Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Here's a question I often find myelf asking: why don't we pray in church services for our enemies? I hear lots of petitions for our "troops in harm's way," but only once in the past year have I been asked to pray for our enemies (terrorists, insurgents, the Bath-ists, Al-Quida, and so on). It's a curious phenomenon because Jesus asks us specifically to pray for them. Maybe we don't because someone will think that sort of stuff is a bit too "liberal" for worship. Got any thoughts on the matter?


Blogger Joan said...

Good question. Actually, I have heard our enemies mentioned in prayer several times in the last few months in church here in the southern United States, but they certainly have not been prayed for publicly nearly as often as have OUR troops.

Thursday, 15 December, 2005  
Blogger Andrew Harnack said...

Joan, thanks for your comment. Since 9/11, I have heard only one strong prayer for those (combatants and civilians) who are suffering as a result of our firepower, bombings, and assaults. While I realize that we are, for all practical purposes, at war (I won't argue the pros and cons of it here), nonetheless I wish the church would acknowledge before God her sadness at the loss of lives and our lessening of our compassion in times like these.

I see that you're from northwest Georgia! My wife and I have a lakehouse on Jackson Lake, about 40 miles south of Atlanta. We'll be driving down early next week to stay for a while. And I see too that you are a retired teacher! I'm just now entering my retirement years; let's pray that all of them for both of us will be good ones.

If you'd like have your name listed as a regular Anthrakian participant, let me know. Do stop by often.

Thursday, 15 December, 2005  
Blogger Mason Smith said...

This is a question that I've had trouble answering. I know the Bible speaks clearly on this subject, but in my own prayers as well as in public prayer, I would find it extremely difficult to pray for a terrorist who very much wants to kill people--people very much like my familiy.
A friend suggested recently that one appropriate way to pray for our enemies is to ask that they somehow find peace. This idea seems to be an improvement over what I'd been doing, praying Psalm 59, "Deliver me from my enemies, O God;/Be my fortress against those who are attacking me" (NIV).
In one sense, if we pray that a terrorist finds peace, he-or-she ceases to be my enemy.
I'd be happy to hear other thoughts.

Friday, 16 December, 2005  

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