Prayer: Boldly Approaching God's Throne

8 - Is Praying a Burden or a Joy to You?

By Dr. Paul M. Elliott
To truly come into the conscious presence of God, and commune with Him at His mercy seat, is a foretaste of Heaven.

From the TeachingtheWord Bible Knowledgebase

Part eight of a series of selections from Profiting From the Word by A. W. Pink. Read part seven.

Edited by Dr. Paul M. Elliott, president of TeachingTheWord Ministries

To truly come into the conscious presence of God, and commune with Him at His mercy seat, is a foretaste of Heaven.

In our last article, Arthur Pink wrote of the need to submit to God while pleading His promises in prayer. In the final article in this series, he addresses the question of prayer as a burden or a joy - and what makes it one or the other.

We are profited from the Scriptures when prayer becomes a real and deep joy. Merely to "say our prayers" each morning and evening is an irksome task, a duty to be performed which brings a sigh of relief when it is done. But really to come into the conscious presence of God, to behold the glorious light of His countenance, to commune with Him at the mercy seat, is a foretaste of the eternal bliss awaiting us in heaven. The one who is blessed with this experience says with the Psalmist, "It is good for me to draw near to God" (Psalm 73:28). Yes, good for the heart, for it is quieted; good for faith, for it is strengthened; good for the soul, for it is blessed. It is lack of this soul communion with God which is the root cause of our unanswered prayers: "Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart" (Psalm 37:4).

What is it which, under the blessing of the Spirit, produces and promotes this joy in prayer? First, it is the heart's delight in God as the Object of prayer, and particularly the recognition and realization of God as our Father. Thus, when the disciples asked the Lord Jesus to teach them to pray, He said, "After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven." And again, "God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba [the intimate Hebrew term for "Father"], Father" (Galatians 4:6), which includes a filial, holy delight in God, such as children have in their parents in their most affectionate addresses to them. So again, in Ephesians 2:18, we are told, for the strengthening of faith and the comfort of our hearts, "For through him [Christ] we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father." What peace, what assurance, what freedom this gives to the soul: to know we are approaching our Father!

Second, joy in prayer is furthered by the heart's apprehension and the soul's sight of God as on the throne of grace - a sight or prospect, not by carnal imagination, but by spiritual illumination, for it is by faith that we "see him who is invisible" (Hebrews 11:27); faith being the "evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1), making its proper object evident and present unto them that believe. Such a sight of God upon such a "throne" cannot but thrill the soul. Therefore are we exhorted, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:16).

Thirdly, and drawn from the last quoted scripture, freedom and delight in prayer are stimulated by the consciousness that God is, through Jesus Christ, willing and ready to dispense grace and mercy to suppliant sinners. There is no reluctance in Him which we have to overcome. He is more ready to give than we are to receive. So He is represented in Isaiah 30:18, "And therefore will the Lord wait, that He may be gracious unto you." Yes, He waits to be sought unto; waits for faith to lay hold of His readiness to bless. His ear is ever open to the cries of the righteous. Then "let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith" (Hebrews 10:22); "in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God," and we shall find that peace which passes all understanding guarding our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7).


Copyright 1998-2022


All rights reserved. This article may be reproduced in its entirety only,
for non-commercial purposes, provided that this copyright notice is included.

We also suggest that you include a direct hyperlink to this article
for the convenience of your readers.

Copyright 1998-2022 TeachingTheWord Ministries