So I guess I'll make a thread about this.
I was reading my bible today when I came upon a verse I had starred some time ago. Matthew 6: 5-6. According to this verse, public prayer would be something that isn't right. I know that the Pharisees would make a scene when they pray, so then I have to bring up the point of bowing your head. It certainly isn't a biblical concept. Yes, I know it's about being humble when you pray, but isn't that calling attention to yourself in public?
07-03-2007, 01:04 AM
The Pharisees did not pray in public for the praying. They did it to look holy and righteous in the eyes of the public.
If someone bows their head to pray to look holy, they are guilty of that too. If they're sincerely praying, no problem.
07-03-2007, 12:39 PM
^ i agree.
07-03-2007, 03:37 PM
i thought bowing your head was just to show respect. like that's what i think of it as.
07-03-2007, 03:48 PM
Prayer journals with letters written to God are a good way to be able to pray in most places without looking holy since most people don't know you're even praying. It's like public prayer, but more secret.
I've been iffy about public prayer for awhile because I remember when I went to a youth conference, I attended a school evangelism seminar and the leader of it thought a good evangelism technique was to pray (bow head) before lunch. But now I see that as wrong because the hope would be that a) people notice, b) they think you're religious/spiritual, c) they ask you about it. Something about that doesn't sit well with me.
I actually disagree with most of his points now. He also thought it was a good idea to leave a Bible on your desk so that people could see it. I disagree because, unless you're going to act like a Christian, you should leave it in your backpack. I knew one girl who would try to read her Bible during class and the teacher would ask her to put it away so that she could do her math before reading and she was rather rude about it, which I think is counterproductive. (she was a nice girl though.)
07-03-2007, 04:38 PM
you shouldn't try to draw attention to yourself in any way when you're praying; after all, it is about you and God.
Using this logic, was Daniel in the wrong?
Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.
07-03-2007, 05:18 PM
...as was his custom since early days.
perhaps the issue isn't Daniel's "public" prayer (though one could argue it was not since he was in his home and not on the street corner), but rather, that he did not change (or compromise) even though he knew it would bring persecution.
He continued on with the Lord, in prayer, as always... being faithful to God.
I don't believe he had the windows open hoping they would see him.
07-04-2007, 06:57 AM
As I said: Motivation.
Daniel stood at the window because it faced Jerusalem. It was normal for them to pray facing Jerusalem.
07-04-2007, 11:16 PM
I think it is the motivation. Because there was the story that Jesus told about the religious leader who prayed thanking God that he wasn't a sinner and there was the tax collector who only asked God for mercy. It sounded like both of them were praying in public, but the tax collector wasn't there to brag about his so-called righteous nature. He was there for God's mercy.
I'm still iffy about it. I think it's hard to be humble and do something like that. When I pray I generally have my eyes open and I'm doing other activities. While it might not be as solemn as bowing your head, I don't feell like that's the appropriate thing to do in public.
07-05-2007, 12:31 AM
I'm not much on public prayer myself. I usually do the same as you or write it down because both are ways in which I can pray without drawing unnecessary attention. But I don't know if it is in and of itself a negative thing. Except Jesus did say to pray where no one can see you. So that tips my feelings a bit.
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