For those of you who have spent some time with us, you probably know by now that I spent a good bit of formative years in various Protestant traditions. This helped me become a tradition sympathizer. I believe that there is great value in the different traditions. As such, I have engaged in multiple conversations, usually strawman arguments, around different traditions. As we are discussing the Saints in our podcast now, I thought I would focus on that one.
The question we hear a lot, is why are you praying to dead people?
First off, we need to clarify the language. It is not a prayer in the sense that it is is worship to the Saint. It is a request that they pray for us. It is much like asking your close friend to pray for you when you are going through a difficult time. The only difference is that this friend is in Heaven and not the house across the street.
The next piece is the word “dead.” I would agree if someone is dead, then asking them to pray for us counts for little. The assumption should be deduced then that they are not dead, which is why we ask them to pray for us. As most of these conversations happen with Protestants, the best way to keep from engaging with the strawman is to go to Scripture. My two examples are this:
Elijah. Is he dead or is he alive? In the Bible, Elijah is taken up to Heaven in a chariot of fire. My argument is that Elijah did not taste death.
Moses. We know that Moses died because the Bible says that. God even buried him. It also says that no one know where is grave is. *Queue spooky mysterious sounds*
Now, the good part. Christ transfigures before three of his disciples. With him is Elijah and Moses. They speak with Jesus. They are not figments of imagination because Peter asks if he should build tents for them. Why would Peter feel the impulse to build a tent for a floating spirit? He wouldn’t.
This is my conclusion that there are those that move from this life to the next, are alive, and can interact with us.
Life is hard. We need all the prayer we can get. The prayers of my Patron, who is close to God and knows His will (as it would be manifest in his presence), are separated from selfishness and sin. His prayers are clear and true and harmonize my good with the will of God.
Working for my life’s vision of writing stories in a beverage shop that I own.