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(By Micca Monda Campbell of Proverbs 31 Ministries)


“Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”~Matthew 28:18 (NIV)


Children learn by copying their parents. They may not always understand their parents’ actions or words, still, they often adopt them as their own. The other day, our son offered the mealtime prayer. In usual fashion he finished the prayer by adding the tag line, “in Jesus Name.” This time, he questioned the “why” behind the words he had been taught to say.

Looking up from his plate, Parker inquired. “Why do we end our prayers in Jesus’ Name?” Great question! I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we end our daily devotions with the same phrase. Perhaps you’ve also wondered why.

Growing up, I was taught that praying in the Name of Jesus meant we were in agreement with Him. That sounds good, but what exactly are we agreeing with?

In the book of Luke, we find a woman who knew the importance of agreeing with Christ. During Christ’s absence, his beloved friend Lazarus took ill and died. When Jesus eventually returned to town, He found Lazarus’ two sisters, Mary and Martha, in deep grief because of their loss. Martha ran out to meet Him. “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you” (11:21-22).

Martha’s statement of faith, “I know whatever you ask of God, He will give you” is significant to why we pray in Jesus’ Name. Martha understood that God had given Jesus all authority over heaven and earth, and wouldn’t deny the requests of His Son. In other words, Martha agreed—by her expression of faith—that Jesus had the authority to change her present situation if He so desired. That’s exactly what He did by resurrecting Lazarus from the dead!

Martha may not have been sure of much that dark day, but she was certain of who Jesus was—who God was—and the importance of their relationship with one another. Martha knew there was no higher court to petition than Christ.

In times of helplessness, you and I understand the importance of authority and what it can do for us. It’s why we ask to speak to the manager of a store in order to solve a problem the clerk has no authority over. We do so because we know the manager has the power and authority to act on our behalf. In a similar manner, we pray in the Name of Jesus because He has the authority—and the power—to accomplish what we cannot without Him.

When you and I pray in the Name of Jesus, we are exercising the same kind of faith Martha expressed. We are agreeing with and claiming the authority of Christ over our circumstances. And we are praying with power—the same kind of power that raised Lazarus from the dead!

We may not be sure of much. But we can be certain that through the authority given Jesus, you and I can boldly make our requests known to God.

Dear Lord Jesus, I believe that whatever you ask God, according to His will, on my behalf, He will give you—and He will give me. My request is __________. I ask it in the powerful Name of Jesus who has all authority over heaven and earth, Amen.


"When I stand before God at the end of my life I would hope that I would have not a single bit of talent left and could say, 'I used everything You gave me.'" ~Erma Bombeck
Leader: Christian Vegetarians & Vegans, & Sparks Raving M.A.D.
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