On today’s Bible Answer Man broadcast (06/02/21), Hank continues his discussion on prayer, focusing on the Jesus Prayer. In 2000, Hank began writing a book titled The Prayer of Jesus, by which he means the Lord’s Prayer. It was published a year later and in 2002 rose to number one on the Christian Marketplace Bestseller list. More importantly, it transformed Hank’s personal prayer life. Today, nearly two decades later, another prayer has become transformative, but in a different way. The Prayer of Jesus—or the Lord’s Prayer—has become Hank’s entryway into God’s presence every day. The Jesus Prayer, however, is the means by which he remains constant in prayer throughout the day. It is rooted in the notion that we are to pray constantly. The goal is to nurture nearness to God. When we sin, we sever the power cord that connects us to our Maker. Calling on the name of the Lord repairs the severed cord. There are many examples from the Bible of those crying out to the Lord for mercy. Recall the lepers who shouted, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” Or the Canaanite woman who cried out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me.” These serve as illustrations of sinful humanity crying out for mercy as they sink ever deeper into the cauldrons of their own sin. Sin that not only disconnects them from their Maker but sin that multiplies suffering and sadness around the globe. This is why repeating the prayer, “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, have mercy on me, a sinner,” is so significant. It provides a way back from the edge of the abyss. Unless we continuously ask for God’s mercy, we are in danger of forgetting how desperately we need it.

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