Reading: “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.” —1 John 4:9

Two facts are plainly affirmed in the Scriptures; first, no created being can ever know God in His absolute essence, and second, all revelation of God is mediated through the agency of the second person of the trinity (John 1:18).

It is true of course that a knowledge of God is afforded through the works of creation, providence and also through the personal conscience (Psalm 19:1–3; Romans 1:20). But the soul yearns for a more intimate communion with the august being in whose image we are made. If then, we are to enjoy conscious communion with Him who is the “Father of spirits” (Hebrews 12:9), we must in measure apprehend Him as He is in Himself. This is accomplished only through Jesus Christ, who is the revelation of the Father (Matthew 11:27).

  • In Christ the Christian gains entrance in prayer for “no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” The faith of true prayer is stimulated thus to lay hold of the power by which all this is to be realized in the soul’s experience; and through the Son we draw very near to the Father in our supplications at the throne of grace.
  • In Christ the Christian gathers material for prayer for “we know not what we should pray for as we ought”; He alone has the words of life.
  • In Christ the Christian gathers confidence in prayer for in Him alone we can “come boldly to the throne of grace.”
  • In Christ the Christian is enriched through prayer for in Christ all the fullness of God dwells and in Christ we grow “unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”

(Edited from Theology of Prayer, B. M. Palmer, 214–228)

Five bleeding wounds He bears; received on Calvary;
They pour effectual prayers; they strongly plead for me:
Forgive him, O forgive, they cry,
Forgive him, O forgive, they cry,
Nor let that ransomed sinner die!

—Charles Wesley