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Prayer in the Psalms: The Means to Intimate Communion in God’s Presence

January 11, 2012

Unity: Monists perplex Christians by claiming that an impersonal reality encompasses a personal deity and that we are all part of that one being. As a mechanical formula, unity seems better than a diversity of creatures in creation – after all everyone is looking for a unified theory in science. Atheism likewise seeks unity in matter. Scriptural truth, however, which provides a coherent whole matching reality, is diametrically opposed to the unity of Hinduism or Atheism or any other world system. This paper attempts to bring out how biblical prayer in the Psalms supersedes any pagan conceptions of divine union. It will hopefully correct and balance Christian appreciation of prayer as divine access to God, in an experiential rather than philosophical sense.

Spirituality: Common language often relates “spirituality” with elements of pagan mysticism. Biblical spirituality wrests that domain back to a true and genuine practice of man’s spirit in relation with God who is Spirit. This practice should be governed by God’s revelation.

Prayer: Prayer is central to the spiritual life of all Christians. In examining the practice of prayer in the Psalms, this paper will explore the connection between God and the believer. It will use the categories of religious experience from Caroline Franks Davis to focus on intimate prayer in the Psalms. Thus the non-Christian mystical impulse is contrasted against pure biblical intimacy. The goal is to isolate the legitimate, beneficial, and necessary aspects of spiritual intimacy in prayer. Such a study can elevate the enjoyment of God as much as scripture permits.

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The article is by Pradeep Tilak, a doctoral candidate at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky. Focusing on apologetics, he regularly writes articles that engage the culture. He serves as an elder at Bethlehem Bible Church. You can contact Pradeep at ptilak@yahoo.com.

Click here, to continue reading his paper.

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