Read: 1 John 5:13-21
This is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. (v. 14)
While in seminary I remember hearing about a prominent theologian who wrote his comprehensive understanding of the Christian faith in a systematic theology. But readers noted that something was missing. He failed to include a chapter on prayer! When asked about that he simply replied that he had forgotten to do so.
Unfortunately, that is what sometimes happens to us. We may love Bible study, worship, fellowship, and service to others, but prayer often is neglected. We forget to pray, or maybe we say a short prayer, but it feels like a perfunctory kind of thing that we do because we are supposed to.
Nothing could be further from John’s view of prayer. For the apostle, prayer is vital to the life of the believer. It is something Christians do with confidence! John wants us to know that we can count on God for help. If there is a genuine need and we ask according to God’s will, God will indeed hear us.
It’s interesting that some of the translations of verse 14, both older and newer versions, use the word “boldness” rather than “confidence.” Indeed, because God is our loving, gracious Father who desires to help us, we should be bold and feel free to ask for his help. How grateful we should be! —John Koedyker
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for hearing our prayers. Help us never forget to pray, and to do it with confidence. Amen.