Friday, February 26, 2010

Offering Prayers for Secular Events

Coming from Texas, the number of prayers I've witnessed offered at public, non-church related events is more than I can count. I have seen football games, ribbon cutting ceremonies, fairs, dances, graduation ceremonies, PTA meetings, fund-raising dinners, political rallies, and the like, all preceded by prayers of invocation. I must say that every time I participated in such prayers, I did so with some serious reservations. In the following blog, Prof. John Stackhouse of Regent College offers a concise explanation of why such generic invocations for secular events are ill-advised for Christians. I know this is going to be a point of contention for some of my readers, but I agree with him fully and I would encourage you to give his reasoning some serious thought.


Bob Cleveland said...

I haven't read the other blog yet, but I must say that standing up in front of a bunch of people, whether it's at a prayer meeting, a dinner, or a football game is about as far removed from what Jesus said about prayer, and also from what He DID about prayer.

When I lead classes, I seldom start or finish with invocation or benediction. I don't see prayer as either some sort of sanctified starting gun, nor checkered flag, for meetings.

belongs to the state of Ohio said...

i haven't read the other blog yet either but I will probably find myself agreeing
like the whole idea of bringing prayer back into schools I have never found beneficial my step mother inlaw sends me invites on facebook to join a group advocating prayer in schools and she doesn't have anything more than the idea that she is american and there for a judeo-christian. Prayer in schools are not going to make the country turn "back" to God. I am sick of the shirts and bumper stickers that say "as long as there are tests there will be prayer in school" well no S*** but that's not what was banned from school.
sorry little rant there

UnderMidnight said...

a ceremony of empty meaninglessness.
kind of like church.

Emily Hunter McGowin said...

Ah, my wonderfully jaded, friend. How I miss you! :)