A case of mistaken identity?

25 December 2019
Topic: prayer

Speaker: Apostle Ernie

Have you ever experienced a case of mistaken identity when talking to someone on the phone? I work as a secretary for a large company, and my voice is very similar to my employer’s voice. Quite often, people who call the office where I work assume they are talking to my employer. Is it a possibility something like this could happen when we pray to our heavenly Father in Jesus’ name? Most Christians will give a definite no as an answer to this question if you are saved by the Blood of Jesus they believe it would be an impossibility to pray to have a case of mistaken identity when it comes to prayer.

What we believe or what we would like to believe is not essential if the things we believe dont match up with the Bible. The Bible always has to have precedence in our lives. So how does the Bible answer our question?

In Isaiah 42:8 Yehovah says He will never share His glory with anyone, He wants His name to be glorified and praised. We see this in Matt 6:9 when the disciples ask Yehoshua to teach them to pray, the first thing Yehoshua says is this “our Father in Heaven, hallowed be thy name.” At no point do we see Yehoshua instructing His believers to say or do anything that brings glory to His name. Everything Yehoshua said, did, and taught was focused on glorifying the Father’s name Yehovah.

So why then do we Christians pray “in Jesus name”?

We pray “in Jesus’s name” because we believe John 14:13 tells us to do so. Who is glorified when we say “in Jesus name”? Who gets the glory when our prayers in “Jesus name” get answered? The Father or the Son? The answer is, the Son is glorified and not the Father. Isaiah 52:8 and Matt 6:9 tells us Yehoshua never intended any glory for Himself. So this is why we know John 14:13 does not ask us to pray in “Jesus name” the way we do today.

So what does it mean to pray “in Jesus name”?

If we want to understand John 14:13, we have to keep in mind Yehoshua (Yeshua/Jesus) was a Jew born in Israel into a Hebrew culture. All the things He said, everything His disciples said has to be interpreted with this in mind. If we neglect this, we end up misunderstanding everything He said, everything His disciples said and even everything Paul said.

The name of a person in a Hebrew culture has different meanings. It could mean the given name, but it could also refer to the reputation of a person. We know because of Isaiah 42:8 and Matt 6:9 Yehoshua is not referring to His given name. That leaves us with just one option; it has to refer to His reputation and character. We see this again 1.John 2:6, where it says all those who claim to be one with Yehoshua have to live their lives the way He did. So what Yehoshua is saying here is this, when we live our lives as He did, we are praying in His name.

Now we understand this has got nothing to do with saying the words “in Jesus name.” It has got all to do with how we live our lives. So how did Yehoshua live His life? He was obedient to the Torah, the very thing most Christians today refuse to obey.

What the Bible is saying is this, if we want our prayers answered, we have to obey Torah the way Yehoshua followed the Torah. And when we pray, we have to pray in Yehovah’s name to Yehovah because that will glorify the Father, and the Father Yehovah does not share His glory or name with anyone.

What we believe, or what we think does not matter if it comes into conflict with the Bible. The Bible always has to have precedence over our opinions and what we want it to say.

Today we have learned that if we want our prayers answered, we have to pray to Yehovah in Yehovah’s name being obedient at all times to the Torah. If we do this, we are one with Yehoshua (Yeshua/Jesus), and we are praying in His name.

The Bible can not contradict itself, and Yehovah (God) can not go back on His word. If this is the way He answers prayer, then this is the only way He answers prayer.

Who then answers prayer prayed in Jesus’s name when we know they are not Biblical prayers?

The Bible says in Psalm 4, Yehovah sees the heart of everyone, and even if we call upon Him by a different name out of ignorance, He will still answer our prayers because He sees we are doing it out of ignorance.

If you pray to “the Father”/”God”/”Lord”/”Jesus” out of ignorance because this is what you believe is right, Yehovah is still the one answering your prayer. He sees your heart, and He knows you are doing this out of ignorance.

But if you know what the Bible says and you still choose to pray to “the Father/God/Lord/Jesus” because you dont want to change what feels comfortable for you, you are no longer doing it out of ignorance. When you cross that line between prayers prayed in ignorance, and prayers prayed knowing what the truth is, it becomes dangerous.

When you pray to the Father/Lord/God/Jesus knowing what the bible says, you have no guarantee it is Yehovah answering your prayer. If you choose to ignore the truth, Yehovah will allow you to suffer the consequences of it, and He will even let evil spirits further deceive you. (Rom 1:28)

Now I have shown you what the Bible says, so now you are accountable to the Bible. Make sure to choose wisely how you pray so you will not be given up to deception.

Before I close, I need to address how to pray for others. We will often come across situations when we have to pray for someone who dont knows who we are referring to if we use God’s name Yehovah. Or perhaps they might mistakenly think you are a Jehovah’s Witness.

In such cases, you are to pray the way they feel most comfortable with. If they are a mainstream Christian, start your prayers with “Lord/Father/God/Jesus” so they feel receptive to your prayer, and they open up for Yehovah to give them what they need right now. Yehovah sees their hearts, and He knows they would not be receptive if you had prayed correctly, so He will answer the prayer you pray for them as if they had prayed it themselves.

Should you, in such cases, tell them the truth?

Not always, sometimes time will not permit you to teach them why they should not say “in Jesus’s name.” The most important thing is to minister to people.

So make sure it is not a case of mistaken identity the next time you pray. Pray to Yehovah in Yehovah’s name united with Yehoshua (Yeshua/Jesus) by your obedience to the Torah.