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Friday, September 22nd | How to Close a Prayer

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah
The Truth Network Radio
September 22, 2023 9:00 am

Friday, September 22nd | How to Close a Prayer

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah

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September 22, 2023 9:00 am

In this show, Dr. Shah talks about the importance of how you close your prayer and how the end of the Disciples' prayer is biblically defendable in the original text. 

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Hello, everyone. Today is Friday, September the 22nd. I'm Ryan Hill.

I'm Jon Galantis. And you're listening to Clearview Today with Dr. Abbadon Shah, the daily show that engages mind and heart for the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can visit us online at ClearviewTodayShow.com. If you have any questions for Dr. Shah or suggestions for new topics, send us a text at 252-58-25028, or you can email us at contact at ClearviewTodayShow.com. You guys can help us keep the conversation going by supporting the show. You can share it online, leave us a good review on iTunes or Spotify, anywhere you get your podcasting content from.

We're going to leave a link in the description so you can do just that. The verse of the day takes... I'm so sorry. The verse of the day today comes from Hebrews chapter 11, verse 6, but without faith, it is impossible to please him, for he who comes to God must believe that he is and that he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him. I love that idea of diligently seeking God. You don't just stumble upon... And it is true that you can stumble upon things that lead you to believe there may be a God, but you don't just stumble upon Christ and his salvation power. You have to ask for it.

You have to seek it. And I love that without faith, it's impossible to please him. We overlook that. And I think it's because we want all the answers laid out. We want proof that God is there.

We want to be... I don't want to say that it's arrogant, but it's almost like, God has to prove himself to me before I believe in him. I'll believe in him and I'll obey him, but you got to fulfill your end. You know what I'm saying? You got to make it plain to me.

Yeah. If you're God, do this, and then I'll follow you. No, that's not the right posture to have. And look at the end of it. And he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him.

If you are genuinely looking for God, you're going to find him. I guess it's because it puts me as the standard. Like, I will obey you, but you have to prove yourself to me. It's kind of like a teeter totter.

Like, I'll be submissive, but you got to prove yourself before you're submissive. That's right. Is it cold in here to you?

It's not, but I'm glad that you brought that up. It's cold. Because we are going to have, this week, we're going to have a double harvest from the gripe vine. What? The gripe vine.

Meow, meow, meow, meow. Here we go. Blink. I have a gripe.

Two gripe vines in a week. Okay. And I have to get this off my chest.

I have to share it. Airplanes. Okay.

I don't like them, but go ahead. Well, that's not the gripe. But when you board an airplane, it can be a hectic process. You got your luggage, your bags, your maybe jacket, and you're kind of like this super narrow walkway, and there's tons of other people, especially on an international flight. If you've never flown internationally before, the plane is usually set up three seats, an aisle, four seats, another aisle, and then three more seats.

Yeah, that's true. So that's usually how an international flight is broken up. Every international flight I've taken has been set up that way.

The one coming back from Greece recently, which is where we were, same way. We flew from Athens to Toronto. That's an 11-hour flight.

That's bad. That's a long time. That's a long flight.

Which is fine. We knew that going into it. It wasn't like, oh my gosh, this is a surprise that it's in 11 hours. What was a surprise was at the beginning of the flight, they had the AC going pretty hardcore as you're walking on. People are hot. I mean, it was warm in Athens, so we were walking on the plane, and you get settled in your seat, and you're like, okay, all right, maybe it's a little bit chilly, but I've got a jacket. I've packed a jacket because sometimes planes are cold. I'd much rather be cold on a plane than hot on a plane. So you didn't like the cold plane?

No, no, I was fine with the cold plane, and it wasn't even that cold where we were. That's not your gripe. There was a gentleman. Here's my gripe.

Here it is. Get ready. This guy, several rows in front of us, but still in our section of the plane, who takes it upon himself to be the champion of the people on the plane. And when I tell you that this dude, at the top of his lungs, was yelling at one of the flight attendants about how cold it was, I was like, are you kidding me? We're barely in the air. I mean, we had been in the air for maybe five minutes, and he is laying into this dude like, it is cold. It is inhumane.

This is embarrassing for you. Inhumane? Yeah. And for you as an airline, look at how many people are bundled up, which was not that many, by the way.

Wrap up in the blanket and shut your mouth. Was he American? Could you tell? I'm sure that, well, I don't want to say that. I'm sure that he was.

He did not have a discernible accent, so I'm thinking that he probably was. I was like, you have got to be kidding me. I can't believe he said it's inhumane. Also that I was sitting next to each other on a plane, and we looked at each other like, is this real life?

It's literal torture. Is this actually happening? People will show their entire behinds on a plane.

I mean, they will moon ev- they will just act out on a plane. And I think, here's what I think happened. I think that when he said that, I'm pretty sure that there were people around him who opened up the air vents that had been closed to make it colder just to spite the sky. And I was like, Elizabeth and I were like, is this real? Is this actually happening? He was crazy.

I don't know. Let us know what you think about cold crybabies on the plane. Yeah, cold crybaby. What's the craziest thing y'all have ever seen on a plane? Yeah. Not quite that bad, but I've seen some people when they get the booze in a little bit, they really act up on them. Poor flight attendants, man. I feel bad for them. I do, too.

I feel bad for them. He shut them down very quickly. And very respectfully. I mean, he didn't mouth off back to the guy, the flight attendant. But I was just like, this dude didn't set the thermostat, why are you yelling at him? Put your blanket on and hush. Wow.

I don't know. We're going to get Dr. Sean Reid to continue the show in just a second. I've got to get off this subject, because I feel my blood pressure rising. Let us know what your plane experience has been like. Text us at 252-582-5028, or you can visit us online at clearytodayshow.com. Stay tuned. We'll be right back. Hey there, listeners. I'm Jon Galantis.

And I'm Ellie Galantis. And we just want to take a quick second and talk to you about Dr. Shah's and Nicole's book, 30 Days to a New Beginning, Daily Devotions to Help You Move Forward. This is actually the second book in the 30 Days series, and the whole point of this devotional is to help us get unstuck from the ruts of life. You know, when it comes to running the race of life, it matters how you start, but a bad start doesn't ultimately determine how you finish the race. You can have a good finish even with a bad start, and that's where this book comes in. No matter who you are or where you are in life, you're going to get stuck.

Instead of going out and buying some gadget or some planner, like I know I've done several times. I know that's right. 30 Days encourages you to find your fresh start in God's word. Life doesn't have a reset button, but our God is a God who does new things. His mercies are new every day, which means every day is a new chance for you to start over. You can grab 30 Days to a New Beginning on Amazon.com. We're going to leave a link in the description box below, and if you already have the book, let us know what you think about it.

That's right. Send us a text, 252-582-5028. Share what God has done in your life through this devotional. Hey, maybe we'll even read your story on the air. Ellie, you ready to get back to the show?

Let's do it. Welcome back to Clear View Today with Dr. Abbadon Shah, the daily show that engages mind and heart for the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can visit us online at ClearViewTodayShow.com. If you have any questions or suggestions for new topics, send us a text, 252-582-5028.

That's right. If today's your first time ever joining us here on the Clear View Today Show, we want to welcome you, let you know exactly who's talking to you today. Dr. Abbadon Shah is a PhD in New Testament textual criticism, professor and Carolina University author, full-time pastor, and the host of today's show.

You can find all of his work on his website. That's AbbadonShah.com. And Dr. Shah, I've been meaning to ask you because today's intro was absolutely insane. Oh, man. What is the worst, what's the worst behavior or just the craziest thing you've ever seen on a plane? Like people just, like, have you ever seen people just go buck wild on a plane? I haven't personally.

I mean, and I'm glad I didn't because that's like raises your anxiety level to a whole new level, I guess. But I have seen people just become rude, you know? So I've seen that. I've seen that. Did people ever, because you rode the train a lot when you were younger, did people ever act out?

Oh, train is crazy. I can talk about that. I had people walk in and sit right on my birth.

Birth is like your little spot where you lay asleep and just sitting there and it's like, Hey, I'm ready to go sleep. Oh, is this a few more minutes? It's like, huh? Okay. A few more minutes means another hour before he gets off his stop. But this is not your seat, but you're going to sit here anyway. So should we fight with this guy or should we just let it go? Or should I just kind of lay down and just kind of kick him off? What do we do here? It's a train.

We can talk all day. I told doctors, I said I've never actually ridden a train. I've ridden like a metro or like a subway, but never like an actual locomotive train. You've never ridden a train until you've ridden a train in India.

That's the gauntlet. That's the real deal. That's where you learn what train rides are about. When you're on a train in India, the only thing you can do, man, is you can only pray.

That's true. Speaking of prayer, we've been continuing this conversation about prayer over the past couple of days. And even before we left, even before we took our trip to Greece, we were talking about prayer and the importance of prayer, the theology behind it, the doctrine behind it. And we've heard from so many people how it's been helpful to them, how it's helped their prayer life, how it's helped them grow closer to God. And one of the things I appreciate the most about you, Dr. Shah, John and I were talking about this, is being a text critic, you can dive deeper into scripture than the average person. You understand the language, and you understand the context, and you help us understand those things as well, which helps us go deeper in our faith. So we want to take some time. We began that conversation over the past couple of days in Matthew, chapter six, with the Lord's Prayer.

We want to take some time here, because we just kind of briefly touched on it, and just dig deeper, because there's so much here for us to understand that will help us in regards to our prayer life. Absolutely. How you end a conversation matters. That's true. When you talk to somebody, you can leave on a high note or a low note.

Same with God. It's a conversation. How you leave that conversation also matters. You can leave on a high note and just trust that your Heavenly Father will answer your needs better than you expected, or you can walk away the same, or even feeling more hopeless than when you began that conversation. There are tons of things that we've written over the years that you specifically have written, and in learning to write and learning to create things, I think one of the biggest things that you've taught me is the ending is the most important. How you end it is critical. If you're truly honest, many of us don't even think about what we're doing when we end our prayers.

That's true. We begin our prayers, but let's say if you're like me, or if you're like the average person who is doing devotions, you read a Bible passage, maybe one from the old, one from the new, read a devotional, and then you will launch into your prayer. And then somewhere here and there, distraction, whatever, you end a prayer. Maybe you end the prayer, maybe you say, okay, let me go and take care of this, or somebody's calling me or my phone's ringing. That's the end of your prayer. It's not a proper end, but Jesus ended the Lord's prayer or really the disciples prayer with a doxology. Speaking of like the rushed ending to a prayer, have you ever just heard the, like, I don't know what else to say. So I just say, gee nay pray men, like exactly like they just rush it.

They're like, and thank you for everything. I had a, this is the beginning of a prayer, but I had a Bible teacher when I was in maybe seventh grade. He would begin his prayers with dear heavenly father, but he said it so fast. It was definitely father. Definitely.

Definitely father. Yeah. But just, just that you're right. A lot of my prayers, especially in the morning time, get interrupted by the mundane. Yeah. And I, and I don't even end them. I just kind of shift my focus. Or the urgent. Something will keep us from finishing that prayer.

Imagine if that's how our conversation was with people. Hang on a second. I got to go. No, no, no, no. Don't even say, I got to go.

Yeah. Just walk off. Just get up and be talking to me.

Let's talk to me right now. So one of the things that I really loved about everything you did was, oh, okay, straight up gone. Isn't that what we do? Oh yeah. I'm talking to somebody else. Yup. Yup.

Yup. So Jesus ended the prayer with the doxology and in the Mishnah, it says, and this is according to the Jewish custom prayer was always followed by a conclusion, by a doxology. So it's not just that you ended a prayer. You ended it with a conclusion, a doxology. And in the Mishnah, it says in the morning, two blessings are to be said, which they order to be concluded with a benediction must not be left without a conclusion.

That's true. So it was important to end the prayer in the proper way. And in the Old Testament, you see that repeatedly at the end of prayers. One example is Psalm 106 verse 48.

It says, bless be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting and that all the people say, amen, praise the Lord. So it has that conclusion, that doxology. Yeah. I love that order to it. I mean, it helps us be more methodical. How have you been able to, Dr. Shah, kind of guard yourself against that distraction or guard yourself against the mundane interrupting your prayers? What does that look like for you? Sometimes I fall into the same trap that everybody else does. And it's tragic.

It's frustrating. And I'm disappointed with myself because of that, because I allow myself to be distracted. If it's important that I end my prayer the proper way, then I need to get up earlier before the distractions of life begin. But I don't get up earlier. I mean, I am right now because we just came back from a trip on jet lag. I'm getting up at five o'clock in the morning or maybe five 30, like I did this morning. So I'm getting up earlier and I'm able to have that distraction free prayer time. But typically it's like eight o'clock. And by the time it's eight 20, this, that, and the other text messages are coming in, notifications are coming in and I am distracted. People are walking around, whatever, and it's not good.

It's not good. And it's, it's sad because we're not just talking to an important person. We're talking to God and we are not even completing a conversation with him. And I think it shows that, that, that respect then, and Jesus had that respect.

And I liked that you brought up the fact that, that Dr. Shah is a text critic. Cause one of the things I wanted to ask you was how do you deal with some translations or some copies of the Bible that say stuff like the, the doxology wasn't actually there. It was, it was added later in life. Cause I've had, I've heard people say that like, well, you know, in the Lord's prayer, that all that doxology, all that ending wasn't actually there, it was added later. And typically you'll see this footnote that the earliest and most reliable manuscripts and other ancient witnesses do not have these words, or we'll say something like some late manuscripts add the doxology or even the NU. What is NU?

NU is Nestle Island, N is for Nestle Island and U is for UBS, United Bible Societies. These are critical texts. These are texts that have been put together through, most of them are through reason eclecticism. So that is the prevalent methodology of determining the original text.

So what they're saying is based on these Greek texts, the doxology is not original reading. So what do we do, you know, what, well, how do we deal with that? So my first encounter with this whole issue began when actually I was in elementary school. Really? Yeah. I didn't know a thing about text criticism, but it began there because I went to a Catholic school.

So they were teaching you your colors, your shapes, and then whether or not the doxology was actually original. No. I'm just joking.

Because in our assembly, we would close the assembly with the Lord's Prayer. Okay. Okay. That makes sense.

But since in the Latin Vulgate, the doxology is not found. Oh. You didn't recite it as a kid. It's not me.

What I mean is the school. The people up front, the nuns would not recite for yours as a kingdom, the power and the glory for now and forever. Amen.

They wouldn't say that. They would just end it with, lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen. And I was like, back at church, they say for yours as a kingdom, the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

So that wasn't something you discovered upon coming here because your father at his church did include the doxology. Oh yes. Yes. That makes sense. It was there. But I didn't know why the nuns were not saying it's like, and as a little kid, I would wonder it's like, do they not believe that the kingdom, the power and the glory are gods forever and ever? Maybe they don't believe that. Maybe they think it's not.

Maybe they think it's also the rulers of this world who have a certain amount of glory and power and whatever as well. So maybe that's why they're there. I never stopped to think, Oh, is there text? If only you knew then that you were going to have a PhD in this exact field.

Like why? Excuse me, sister. Why don't you sit down and let me learn you something.

You sound like my mom. But I went out to do my PhD in New Testament Textual Criticism. And that's when I realized, Oh, okay, this is a text critical issue that's going on. So it should be included?

Yeah. According to my study, and there are people who will disagree with me because their methodology is different. They're going with the critical text. I'm going more with the Byzantine text and I feel like there, it is valid.

And I don't know how much we want to go into textual criticism in this discussion. I mean, it's kind of interesting, I bet. Yeah. Yeah. Trying to, I mean, that's a good point. I feel like there's a lot of people who've looked at that and held those things side by side and said, wait a minute, is this an error? I mean, did Jesus really say this?

Did he not? What, what do we do with that? I feel like that's a question on people's minds. And I also want to clarify, I'm not a King James version only. I'm not a KJV only. It's a great translation, but I am not for the, I'm talking about the Byzantine text, which the KJV has used, but that does not make me a KJV only.

My methodology is based on my own study and my PhD work, which is not in Byzantine text, by the way. It's, it's in, it's a whole different subject in textual criticism, but it is true that the doxology is not found in the earliest Greek manuscripts that have survived. The keyword there is survived because even those are copies of manuscripts that came before.

Right. Well, the problem was, the point I'm making here is that there are many manuscripts that did not survive. So just because some have survived, you're saying, oh, that's the right one.

How about the ones that haven't survived? Yeah, that's a good point. And if you, if you think about it, how many majority of the manuscripts include the doxology, then the question is, if they included, where did they get it from? By logic, they require a predecessor text, right? Because if they, if others have it, you have to assume that it was added. It would, it would make a lot of assumptions on the part that these earliest manuscripts don't have it. The vast majority of ones who do come after have it.

So somewhere in the middle, someone had to have just, someone had to add it, but then for what reason? Right. And there's, there's tons and tons and tons of manuscripts before that, that didn't.

So isn't it more likely that these few that don't have it should have it? Right. So to get a little bit more technical for a few minutes, for those of you who are not exposed to the subject of textual criticism, let me just say this. You may want to get exposed to this subject of textual criticism because that's the feel from which some of the most vehement attacks are coming against the Bible. It's true. And because the average person or the lay person is not as educated in textual criticism, what do we do?

We kind of throw up our hands and go, well, I guess they must be right. I just don't know. Maybe. I don't know. I don't know. I don't know. I don't know. I just believe, man. I just thought I'd do.

Or with many people, it's like, I guess I can't believe. Yeah. Yeah. That's true.

So it's worth just kind of exposing yourself. So for the benefit of those who want to just for a few minutes, it is this, this doxology is not found in three manuscripts from the fifth century, which is DZ0170. So elephant B from the fourth that have survived, they don't have that text. They don't have the doxology, elephant B.

Neither do these three manuscripts from the fifth century have it. But one thing that many people don't realize is that four out of those five seem to have a common origin, which narrows their weight. So we got to be careful when we say, oh, look, all these, well, what if they're connected?

What if they were written around the same area? Right, by the same people or there's some kind of a genealogical connection, then you cannot say these are all separate witnesses. You have to now say, they're not as separate. They are related. Right. In fact, they are descendants.

And if that's the case, then we really cannot give them that much weight. It's like, it's like if you and your family or you and your two kids saw John steal something or so you're claiming, OK, Ryan, I mean, you're claiming that you saw John steal. Right.

Also, Noah and Evie are claiming the same thing, but you are related. Right. So at that point, can we really say these are three individual independent witnesses or now we have to say maybe one or one and a half at the most.

Whereas if Ryan and then two other unrelated church members saw me steal something, that would carry more weight. At that point, we have to go, OK, there's something going on here. That's a good point. Right. That's a good point.

So that's something we need to consider. Also, what many people don't realize is that the doxology is found is found in one early Greek manuscript, which is W from the fifth century and two, Sigma and Phi from the sixth century. Something else, the doxology is absent from only 13 or so manuscripts, and 10 of them are after the 13th century.

So much later. But from the eighth century on, fifteen hundred and four manuscripts have the doxology. From the eighth century on, fifteen hundred and four manuscripts have the doxology. The overwhelming majority have that doxology.

And again, I know my recent eclectic friends are saying, wait, but they are from the eighth and the ones from the fourth don't have it. I hear you, but we're also emphasizing those that have survived. Can we really take the ones that have survived in the sands of Egypt and claim that that was the case all around the Mediterranean, where the climate was so humid that many of those papyrus manuscripts have disintegrated and gone forever?

Can we really say that that all that doesn't matter? And one of my friends, Jonathan Borden, did the math and altogether, ninety eight point six percent of all Greek manuscripts have the doxology. So I mean, even that's that's what I'm thinking is that with that overwhelming majority, even if those earliest ones don't have it, they must have gotten it from somewhere. They must have copied it from somewhere. There is a predecessor text.

I guess the question is, like, why drop it? Right. It seems like the evidence is overwhelmingly in support of having the doxology in there. So something else to point out over here, the Latin version doesn't have it. So also the early church fathers, Origen, Tertullian, Cyprian, Ambrose and Augustine. So we have to sort of keep that in mind.

But the doxology is found in an old Latin manuscript and some of the old Syriac versions, some Coptic, Gothic, Ethiopic, Georgian and Armenian. So I can go on and on. But the question is, why did some manuscripts drop it? Right. Right.

I mean, that's what I want to know. Maybe Luke does not include it because some scribes may have felt that Matthew shouldn't either. Because they need to match.

Yeah, they need to match. They should remember that maybe Luke left it out because the Gentile didn't see the need for a doxology at the end of every prayer. That's very true.

Different audiences. Yeah. Maybe because when the church collectively read the passage, they would stop and deliver us from evil and the priest alone would say the doxology.

So it started to become more and more normal and then they figured that's how it must have actually been. Yeah. Yeah. Personally, I think it's because some scribe thought that it was contradicting the opening prayer, which is your kingdom come. And it could be that the scribe felt that if the kingdom was still to come, how can we say yours is the kingdom? Really? Scribes would just make calls like judgment calls like that? Very rarely.

Golly, that's crazy. But there is a possibility. Yeah, that's true. So we don't have all the conclusion and answers, but my conclusion is that the evidence is in favor of the doxology. This is part of textual criticism.

It's not a hard and fast science, but it requires research and thinking and application. So this is a purpose behind it, folks. I hope everybody knows that our goal is to educate people and then strengthen them in their faith. Right.

So let's close the episode well. How do we close out of prayer? So yours is the kingdom, meaning the rightful owner now and forever is God, right? And no matter how we come to God in prayer, we need to remember that God owns his entire creation. Everything that is in it, including our problems, including us, God is in control. And what a, how much peace that brings us.

That's right. Yours is the kingdom. Then also yours is the power forever, which means he can change circumstances now and forever. Now, you know, sometimes people think, yeah, God can, but maybe not.

He should know God can everything God can, we just have to know that sometimes he may not. And that's where the last one comes in for yours is a glory forever, which means this, he gets the glory now and forever. So sometimes I may not get the answer that I want, but nonetheless, he gets the glory. And the glory is this, that he will work all things together for good. That's right.

And I just have to trust him. A good example of that is in Lazarus's life, he had to die. Four days had to go by, but in the end, God, Jesus said, you know, this is not the end in itself. Because he says, in John 11, 40, Jesus said to Martha, did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?

Oh, that's true. Because some of our prayers may not come through the way we want them to, but they will bring God glory. So important for us and so helpful as we think about prayer, especially how to close a prayer and this whole passage behind the Lord's prayer, it helps us kind of understand not just how we should structure our prayers, but what the heart behind prayer actually is. If you guys enjoyed today's episode, if you have questions or suggestions for new topics, if you'd like to learn more about how to enhance your prayer life, send us a text at 252-582-5028. You can visit us online at ClearviewTodayShow.com. And don't forget that you can partner with us financially on that same website. Stand shoulder to shoulder with us as we seek to impact the nations with the gospel of Jesus. We love you guys. We'll see you next time on Clearview Today.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-27 16:30:11 / 2023-09-27 16:43:41 / 14

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