Offending God with Prayer

There are lots of people who pray. In our world, when a tragedy strikes or when a person simply wants to say that they are a friend to another person, suggesting that, “I’ll pray for you.,” or something similar is common.

At the same time, there are many people who will tell you that they find prayer to be an important part of their lives. People who do not worship the Lord with the people of God in a church, people who do not know or love the word of God, people who value the things of the world around them are still people who will say that they pray. And I am sure they do.

But what does God think of it when a person who does not know him, who does not follow him, who will not obey him, decides to pray?

Proverbs 28:9

If one turns away his ear from hearing the law,
even his prayer is an abomination.

Those words from the Scripture are strong and significant. God has told us through a book about wisdom that a person who turns away from hearing the word of God, a person who will not follow the Scripture, might indeed pray. But that person’s prayers will be—get this and don’t miss it—an abomination.

God is not a fan of empty religion. God is not a fan of empty religious expression. God is even clear that he is not the least bit open-minded about this. God has a way that he will be approached. And God has every right to say that, if a person approaches him in a way that actually opposes him, he will not accept it.

Let us not assume that all religious expression is good. Nor let us think that all prayers please the Lord. If a person is against the word of God, their prayers offend God.

The solution here is not to be offended by the fact that God will not do things our way. Instead, the solution is to submit to the Lord by submitting to his word. The God who made us is the Lord. he is our Master, Creator, and Judge. He is a merciful Father to all who will come to him in faith and repentance through Jesus Christ. But he is clear that he is not at all required to accept us through any other path. His word tells us to come to Jesus in faith for salvation. Prayers of those who reject the Lord, reject his Son, and reject his word are not things that please him.