Bible Gives Good Advice About Prayer

baseball team praying

The problems with prayer are too many to list, and I've written about several of them over the years. In fact, I've written about one of them (i.e., Christians praying publicly even though their bible explicitly condemns the practice) several times. Each time I've done so, I've quoted from the King James version of the Christian bible (if the bible is inerrant, why are there so many different versions of it?).

So for good measure, here's what the New International Version has to say on the subject:
And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. - Matthew 6:5-6 (New International Version, ©2010)
Seems fairly clear, doesn't it? Public prayer amounts to hypocrisy, and that is not a good thing. Believers should pray privately, behind closed doors. We don't have to infer this from the text above; it is contained in the text above. If we really want to infer something that is implied by but not contained in the text above, we might say that this imaginary "Father" probably sees you touching yourself.

But seriously, it probably doesn't hurt to remind Christians about this bit of their book that so many seem so motivated to ignore. It would be great if our elected officials were familiar with it.