April 6, 2009

Praying the Wrong Way

The following story was reported by the BBC. I was struck by the difference in the nature of prayers prayed by Muslim faithful all over the world and those prayed by Christians.

Some 200 mosques in Islam's holiest city, Mecca, point the wrong way for prayers, reports from Saudi Arabia say.

All mosques have a niche showing the direction of the most sacred Islamic site, the Kaaba, an ancient cube-like building in Mecca's Grand Mosque.

But people looking down from recently built high-rises in Mecca found the niches in many older mosques were not pointing directly towards the Kaaba.

Some worshippers are said to be anxious about the validity of their prayers.

(Emphasis added)

The article does go on to quote an official as saying the prayers were not affected in any way. I wonder who the faithful Muslims are going to believe; some government official or their system of beliefs which requires them to pray toward Mecca? I'm betting their belief system will trump the word of their government.

There is a better way! Prayer, for the Christian, is not a matter of directional fidelity but rather of relational certainty. Rather than uttering our words of prayer toward a place we are engaged in conversation with a God who is there in all places at all times.

I am grateful for the truth that "He [Jesus] is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them." (Hebrews 7:25)


Paul said...

Hi John - off topic -
If you want to join and promote my Easter Challenge for Christian Bloggers - please have a look here http://tinyurl.com/dgxrz7 and leave a comment to let me know that you want to participate!

sojourner said...

we pray in our bodies as we live out our faith