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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

5 October 2011: Peter Belton, St Mary's Sheet

Thinking about the words used

We so often use a form of words in our prayers and I, for one, need to get to grips with what they mean and their implications.

So, how about "in the name of Jesus"? We often finish our prayers with this phrase.

To say or do something in someone else's name would mean that they would want to say or do the same thing and we are acting on their behalf, with them, or with their 'delegated' powers.

So to say 'in the name of Jesus' means that we are in the position of knowing the mind of God.

Awesome implications and responsibility!

Particularly when God has other ideas as to what is best for us and has a hugely longer perspective of infinity than we have.

So, if we pray or say (or think) these things lightly or casually, we are really taking the Lord's name in vain.

It is also potentially misleading to other folk, who might, rightly or wrongly, reasonably believe that we are talking with the mind of God. I guess this does draw us nearer to the Lord and helps us trust his holy spirit.

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