Prayers Around the World, Part 1

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Every culture has a unique expression of worship to God.  We might not understand some of the traditions, but if we see through the heart and eyes of Jesus, there’s much to be gleaned from them.  In the next series of blogs, we’ll explore prayers from around the world, starting today with Israel.

Of course, since our Bible was written by Jews, we have many examples of Jewish prayers – Daniel, Nehemiah, Paul, Jesus and many more!  Today we’ll look at ones less familiar and more traditional to the Jews today.

Here’s some excerpts from the “Amidah” a series of weekday prayers:

“Blessed are you, Oh Lord our God, and God of our fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob.  The great, mighty and revered God, the Most High God who bestows lovingkindness, The Creator of all, who recalls the good deeds of the fathers and brings a Redeemer to their children’s children for his name’s sake, in love.  O King, Helper, Savior and Shield.   Blessed are you, O Lord, the shield of Abraham…

You are holy and your name is holy and your holy ones praise you every day, Blessed are you Adonai, the God who is holy….

Return us, our Father, to Your Torah; draw us near our king to serve you. Restore us to your presence in complete repentance.  Blessed are you, O Lord, who desires repentance.

Forgive us our Father, for we have sinned, pardon us our King for we have rebelled.  For you are a Pardoner and a forgiver.  Blessed are you, O Lord, the gracious one who abundantly forgives…

May the Seed of David Thy servant flourish speedily and may you exalt in Your salvation, for in Your salvation do we hope all the day.  Blessed are you, O Lord, who brings forth the horn of our salvation….

We thank You, for it is You alone who is Adonai, our God and the God of our fathers, forever and ever.  You are the Rock and Shield of our salvation, You alone from generation to generation. We thank You and tell of Your praise, for our lives are in your hands,  and our souls are trusting in You.  Every day Your miracles are with us.  Your wonders and favor are at all times, evening and morning and afternoon.  O Good One, your compassions are never exhausted and your kindnesses are continual.   We put our hope in you.”

I love to see the beauty of the expression in these words and the different ways God is praised!  Notice the references of Jesus and Holy Spirit woven in, though they don’t see it!

Pray this prayer today and think of our brothers and sisters of Jewish decent whom we’ve been grafted into.  Some know Messiah, others do not, but we all believe in the same Father.

Got anything to say? Go ahead and leave a comment!