Summary: BOLDNESS, not arrogance, is blessed. God gives bold access to the throne of grace and welcomes bold prayers from humble Christians.
Prayer Keys - Boldness
Let us approach the throne of grace with confidence [boldness], so that we may receive mercy & find grace to help us in our time of need. Heb. 4:16
This is another verse where I prefer the King James Bible language that says, “boldness.” Boldness is a biblical key to effective prayer.
There is a story about Alexander the Great returning home after a successful campaign. His infantrymen entered to cheers and music, leading the defeated, captured, and bound enemy warriors.
The celebration continued with the cavalrymen carrying the spoils of war followed by the officers. The cheers erupted even louder as Alexander’s chariot was spotted beyond the banners.
A little boy wormed his way to the front of the crowd, then tried to run to the chariot. A burly soldier caught his arm and jerked him back. “Fool kid! Do you know who that is? That’s the emperor!”
The boy answered, “He may be your emperor, but he is my father!” The boy was no fool. He enjoyed free access to the emperor that the cheering crowds and the soldiers assigned to control them did not. He could approach the chariot of the emperor boldly.
We enjoy free access to God. We can approach the throne of grace boldly.
For me to march into Pres. Obama’s office, tap him on the shoulder, grin, and ask for something would be presumptuous, arrogant, possibly suicidal (the Secret Service, responsible for protecting the President, would do anything necessary to stop me). Malia Obama could march into his office and make a request freely, boldly, and safely. She is his child. She enjoys bold access to the oval office.
I am a child of the King of Kings. I enjoy bold access to the throne of grace.
We can also offer bold prayers. I’m not sure this can be separated from praying specifically, another prayer key Bible study. Bold prayers tend to be specific. What would be a bold prayer for us at First Baptist Church, Everman, Texas?
One bold prayer would be that God would use us to reach Everman. I did not know how bold that prayer would be until I began substitute teaching. The rampant disrespect for authority, the disrespect for self evidenced in how students dress and act, the pregnant girls even in junior high, and other things I have seen speak to a great spiritual need in our town.
How can a church which runs about 140 in Sunday School reach town of 6500? The Bible says God has done such things before. After the resurrection and ascension of Jesus, 120 disciples prayed for ten days until they were filled with power from on high. The Lord added to his church about 3,000 that day. In Acts 4, the Lord added another 5,000 (total, 8,000). We’re starting with more than 120 to reach fewer than 8,000. Should we be so bold as to pray for another Pentecost? Should we be so bold as to pray for an event of Biblical proportions? Yes, we should! God welcomes bold prayers, even prayers for events of Biblical proportions!
While emphasizing boldness, we must also remember to be humble. Another bible study will emphasize that God said, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves, and pray…” God welcomes bold prayers from humble Christians.
We enjoy bold access to offer bold prayers, but we should never mistake presumption and arrogance for confidence or boldness. Yes, we can approach the throne of grace boldly, but we should never forget it is a throne. As we approach our father, we also approach the King of Kings, the Lord of Creation. He is worthy of worship, worthy of praise, and worthy of reverence.
In the past, when kings were more than ceremonial figureheads, no one approached them arrogantly. Protocol demanded petitioners approach with bowed heads. If earthly kings and queens, mere men and women, received such respect, how much more should the King of Kings, the almighty God, receive not just respect, but reverence?
Spurgeon said, “His throne hath sway in all worlds, heaven obeys Him cheerfully, hell trembles at His frown, and earth is constrained to yield Him homage willingly or unwillingly.”
Boldness is a biblical key to effective prayer, but we should never mistake arrogance for boldness.
The Bible says we may approach the throne of grace boldly, but not arrogantly. “Oh come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker,” Psalm 95:6. “The LORD is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens. Honour and majesty are before him: strength and beauty are in his sanctuary. Give unto the LORD, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come into his courts. O worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness: fear before him, all the earth,” Ps. 96:4-9.