In this new series I have partnered up with Jim Busch from the Facebook group Following God out of Christianity. I am researching a series of subjects for him to write on and post in his group. We then will take the info from these blogs and do a series of videos that he will post in his group and Youtube channel.
This series will not be an all-inclusive coverage of each topic, as there have been many books written on them already. But, if you want to know the difference between what the Hebrew Scriptures has to say about such subjects as prayer, repentance, the soul and so on this series will be a great introduction. I will be listing source materials for your further research.
Torah Prayer vs New Testament Prayer/in Jesus name
I will start off with some of the basic passages the Christian New Testament has to say about prayer then move to the Hebrew Scriptures.
Christianity has a mixture of beliefs, some pray to the Father, some pray to Jesus, some pray to the Holy Spirit then some pray to all three.
The NT says to pray in Jesus name – John 16:23 KJV “And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.”
John 16:26 KJV “At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you:”
The NT says that no one can come to the Father accept through Jesus – John 14:6 KJV “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
I will be covering the subject of the trinity in a separate blog; this one will deal with the subject of prayer only.
Because Christians are warned not to read what they call the Old Testament too much, they spend most of their time in the NT. This causes them to be unaware what the Hebrew Scriptures really say.
At this point I need to make a disclaimer; even though there are some similarities between the Christian OT and the Hebrew Scriptures, the Christian OT is not the true Hebrew Scriptures. In the creation of the Christian bible the Roman Catholic Church who created the Old and New Testaments tampered with the Hebrew Scriptures. The books were rearranged and there are many verses that were out-right mistranslated to give them a Christology that is not there in the original Hebrew.
To know the correct translation one needs to get a Hebrew/English Tanach like the Artscroll Stone Edition Tanach. Learning to read Hebrew would be even a greater plus in seeing what the Hebrew Scriptures say because English is a horrible language to translate the Hebrew in, so much is hidden when one only reads the English, as we will see in this series. For example the English word soul – there are several Hebrew words referring to the soul; to understand a particular passage on the soul, it depends which word is used in the passage. I will get more into that one when we discuss the soul.
In a very short sweep of the brush I will show you a couple of passages in the Hebrew Scriptures that will make void the those passages in the NT book of John, and then we will get into the breakdown of what Prayer is in the Hebrew.
In the Torah culture that the Creator G-d created, He did not set up any mediators to go between man and Himself.
Now many of you Christians will say that Moses was the mediator of the OT. He was not. The Creator spoke to him in the giving of the Torah and then he was commanded to write it down but when it came to personal prayer and communication with the Holy One Blessed be He, it was and has always been individual. They (Israel) do come together for corporate prayer but there is a personal one on one prayer called, hisbidadus they do; more on that later.
Let’s take a look at an important passage on prayer and going to our creator as an individual.
Tehillim/Psalms 145:18 “G-d is close to all who call upon Him – to all who call upon Him in truth.”
Do you see what this say? It says that He is close to ALL who call upon Him – there is no mediator mentioned here – Abraham, Isaac and Jacob did not need a mediator – the people of Nineveh in the book of Jonah did not need a mediator to go through or call out in his name to make repentance.
Let’s look at another one,
2 Chron. 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
Here in this passage from the Writings of the Tanach/Hebrew Scriptures we find instruction from the Creator – in it we see the instruction to pray, there is no mentioning of needing to pray in anyone’s name or come to the Creator through anyone but oneself. We also find that for the forgiveness of sin here requires nothing but prayer and changing one’s ways. More on that when we get to the subject of repentance; as you can see the subject of prayer touches so many other areas.
So in this short look into the Hebrew Scriptures, prayer and connecting to the Creator is whole lot different than it is in Christianity. Thus it is easy to see that Christianity is not a Jewish idea, if it was the subject of prayer and connecting to the Creator would be the same.
Christianity changed the rules, you do not need to pray in Jesus name or have him to pray for you. If you want to really connect to the Creator, lay aside your mediator and call out to Him for yourself in the truth of the Hebrew Scriptures, without calling in anyone’s name. This is the true personal relationship with the Creator you are meant to have. You do not need to add any tag lines at the end of your prayer. You do not do this with your earthly parents or friends in regular conversation and you do not need it with your Creator Who has a very personal interest in you. He wants you to talk to Him straight on – He is close to those who call on Him – i.e. not in some other’s name. You are being held back and controlled by a religion that did not come out of the Hebrew Scriptures.
Let go and have an amazing walk with your Creator.
Call out to Him.
A proper way to call out to Him in English is addressing Him as ‘Master of the Universe’ this statement means that He is the One and only Master, He is your only source – He is the only one and there is no other – there is no need to call on any other name to call on Him.
Pray and meditate before your Creator about what Psalms 145:18 says. Believe it and do it.
In part 2, I will be discussing the different Hebrew words that relates to the subject of prayer. These different terms will help enhance your prayer life.
Terry W. Hayes