Vatican to Receive Converted Anglicans
At a conference on Tuesday, the Vatican issued a press release announcing the “Apostolic Constitution,” a new set of church laws that will make it easier for Anglicans dissatisfied with their current faith to convert to Catholicism, Stacy Meichtry and Amy Merrick report for The Wall Street Journal.
As the Journal explains, this move, considered to be “one of Rome's most sweeping gestures to a Protestant church since the Reformation,” could prove to be a “serious threat” for Anglican churches, which have approximately 77 million followers worldwide. Many members of the Anglican Church have expressed their discontent over recent developments such as “the church's growing acceptance of gay and women clergy and same-sex marriage.” Read Article Catholic Church Welcomes Anglicans
This recent development within the Roman Catholic Church is unprecedented. The "melding" of a church with a Protestant Doctrine into the Roman Catholic Doctrine; which is very different from every protestant doctrine is extremely disturbing to many people. However, it is a step toward the "one world religion" spoken of in the Bible and particularly in relation to the church during the last days and a "religion" that will assist in the work of the anti-christ. Our churches today are assisting in this movement by forsaking the teachings of the Bible, which is the Word of the Almighty God. Many Christians today don't know the "truth" because they don't take the time to read their Bibles. Their downfall will be their fault. They cannot keep from being deceived because they do not know the Word of God and without that, how can they have a true relationship with God? There are many "popular" pastors today who are false prophets. People are flocking to them, one in particular is Rick Warren. His message is filled with "new age" teachings and with unscriptural basis. Yet, his churches are packed full. Because we are told over and over to study and even to "hide" the word in our hearts, we should know this; yet look at those who do not. I am sure many who read this would try to argue with me over my comment, perhaps using the "judge not lest yet be judged" argument. However, God tells us to "judge the spirits, whether they be true or false" and that is exactly what Christians are to do. We are not only to do that, we are to inform others.
"Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull the mote out of thine eye; and behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast the mote out of thy brother's eye."
Clearly, it is hypocritical judgment that this Scripture condemns. (Look at verse 6, and 13-15 to see that Christ actually instructs them to make judgments!) A hypocritical judgment is judging something for something of which you are also guilty - LIKE TELLING ME NOT TO JUDGE WHEN YOU ARE JUDGING ME! This passage means the opposite of what hypocrites often interpret it to mean! Jesus' point is for hypocrites to pluck the beam of sin out of their own eye so that they can see clearly to cast the mote out of their neighbor's eye.
Let's look at some other Scriptures...
JOHN 7:14: "Judge not according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment."
LUKE 12:57: "Yea, and why not even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?"
PSALM 37:30: "The mouth of the righteous speaketh wisdom, and his tongue talketh of judgment."
PROVERBS 31:9: "Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy."
LUKE 17:3: "Take heed... If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him."
LEVITICUS 19:15-17: "Ye shall do no unrighteousness in judgment: thou shalt not respect the person of the poor, nor honour the person of the mighty: but in righteousness shalt thou judge thy neighbor. Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbor: I am the Lord. Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbor, and not suffer sin upon him."
EZEKIEL 22:2 & 23:36: "Now, thou son of man, wilt thou judge, wilt thou judge the bloody city? Yea, thou shalt show her all her abominations... The Lord said moreover unto me, Son of man, wilt thou judge Aholah and Aholibah? Yea, declare unto them their abominations."
I CORINTHIANS 2:15; 6:2-3: "He that is spiritual judgeth all things... Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? How much more things that pertain to this life?"
WE ARE TO KNOW THE WORD OF GOD, DELIGHT IN IT, LIVE BY IT:
"Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. 12 Blessed art thou, O LORD: teach me thy statutes. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. 16 I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word. 17 Deal bountifully with thy servant, that I may live, and keep thy word. 18 Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law. 19 I am a stranger in the earth: hide not thy commandments from me.Thou hast rebuked the proud that are cursed, which do err from thy commandments. 22 Remove from me reproach and contempt; for I have kept thy testimonies. 23 Princes also did sit and speak against me: but thy servant did meditate in thy statutes. 24 Thy testimonies also are my delight and my counsellors. 25 My soul cleaveth unto the dust: quicken thou me according to thy word. 26 I have declared my ways, and thou heardest me: teach me thy statutes. 27 Make me to understand the way of thy precepts: so shall I talk of thy wondrous works. 28 My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto thy word. 29 Remove from me the way of lying: and grant me thy law graciously. 30 I have chosen the way of truth: thy judgments have I laid before me. 31 I have stuck unto thy testimonies: O LORD, put me not to shame. 32 I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart. 33 Teach me, O LORD, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end. 34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart. 35 Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight. 36 Incline my heart unto thy testimonies, and not to covetousness. 37 Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way. 38 Stablish thy word unto thy servant, who is devoted to thy fear. 39 Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good. 40 Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: quicken me in thy righteousness. 41 Let thy mercies come also unto me, O LORD, even thy salvation, according to thy word. 42 So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me: for I trust in thy word. 43 And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth; for I have hoped in thy judgments. 44 So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever. 45 And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy precepts. 46 I will speak of thy testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed. 47 And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved. 48 My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes. 49 Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope. 50 This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me. 51 The proud have had me greatly in derision: yet have I not declined from thy law. 52 I remembered thy judgments of old, O LORD; and have comforted myself. 53 Horror hath taken hold upon me because of the wicked that forsake thy law. 54 Thy statutes have been my songs in the house of my pilgrimage. 55 I have remembered thy name, O LORD, in the night, and have kept thy law. 56 This I had, because I kept thy precepts. 57 Thou art my portion, O LORD: I have said that I would keep thy words. 58 I entreated thy favour with my whole heart: be merciful unto me according to thy word. 59 I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies. 60 I made haste, and delayed not to keep thy commandments. 61 The bands of the wicked have robbed me: but I have not forgotten thy law. 62 At midnight I will rise to give thanks unto thee because of thy righteous judgments. 63 I am a companion of all them that fear thee, and of them that keep thy precepts. 64 The earth, O LORD, is full of thy mercy: teach me thy statutes. 65 Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O LORD, according unto thy word. 66 Teach me good judgment and knowledge: for I have believed thy commandments. 67 Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word. 68 Thou art good, and doest good; teach me thy statutes. 69 The proud have forged a lie against me: but I will keep thy precepts with my whole heart. 70 Their heart is as fat as grease; but I delight in thy law. 71 It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes. 72 The law of thy mouth is better unto me than thousands of gold and silver. 73 Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments. 74 They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in thy word. 75 I know, O LORD, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me. 76 Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant. 77 Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight. 78 Let the proud be ashamed; for they dealt perversely with me without a cause: but I will meditate in thy precepts. 79 Let those that fear thee turn unto me, and those that have known thy testimonies. 80 Let my heart be sound in thy statutes; that I be not ashamed. 81 My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word. 82 Mine eyes fail for thy word, saying, When wilt thou comfort me? 83 For I am become like a bottle in the smoke; yet do I not forget thy statutes. 84 How many are the days of thy servant? when wilt thou execute judgment on them that persecute me? 85 The proud have digged pits for me, which are not after thy law. 86 All thy commandments are faithful: they persecute me wrongfully; help thou me. 87 They had almost consumed me upon earth; but I forsook not thy precepts. 88 Quicken me after thy lovingkindness; so shall I keep the testimony of thy mouth. 89 For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. 90 Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth. 91 They continue this day according to thine ordinances: for all are thy servants. 92 Unless thy law had been my delights, I should then have perished in mine affliction. 93 I will never forget thy precepts: for with them thou hast quickened me. 94 I am thine, save me; for I have sought thy precepts. 95 The wicked have waited for me to destroy me: but I will consider thy testimonies. 96 I have seen an end of all perfection: but thy commandment is exceeding broad. 97 O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day. 98 Thou through thy commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies: for they are ever with me. 99 I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation. 100 I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts. 101 I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word. 102 I have not departed from thy judgments: for thou hast taught me. 103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! 104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. 105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. 106 I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments. 107 I am afflicted very much: quicken me, O LORD, according unto thy word. 108 Accept, I beseech thee, the freewill offerings of my mouth, O LORD, and teach me thy judgments. 109 My soul is continually in my hand: yet do I not forget thy law. 110 The wicked have laid a snare for me: yet I erred not from thy precepts. 111 Thy testimonies have I taken as an heritage for ever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart. 112 I have inclined mine heart to perform thy statutes alway, even unto the end. 113 I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love. 114 Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word. 115 Depart from me, ye evildoers: for I will keep the commandments of my God. 116 Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my hope. 117 Hold thou me up, and I shall be safe: and I will have respect unto thy statutes continually. 118 Thou hast trodden down all them that err from thy statutes: for their deceit is falsehood. 119 Thou puttest away all the wicked of the earth like dross: therefore I love thy testimonies. 120 My flesh trembleth for fear of thee; and I am afraid of thy judgments. 121 I have done judgment and justice: leave me not to mine oppressors. 122 Be surety for thy servant for good: let not the proud oppress me. 123 Mine eyes fail for thy salvation, and for the word of thy righteousness. 124 Deal with thy servant according unto thy mercy, and teach me thy statutes. 125 I am thy servant; give me understanding, that I may know thy testimonies. 126 It is time for thee, LORD, to work: for they have made void thy law. 127 Therefore I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold. 128 Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way. 129 Thy testimonies are wonderful: therefore doth my soul keep them. 130 The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple. 131 I opened my mouth, and panted: for I longed for thy commandments. 132 Look thou upon me, and be merciful unto me, as thou usest to do unto those that love thy name. 133 Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me. 134 Deliver me from the oppression of man: so will I keep thy precepts. 135 Make thy face to shine upon thy servant; and teach me thy statutes. 136 Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, because they keep not thy law. 137 Righteous art thou, O LORD, and upright are thy judgments. 138 Thy testimonies that thou hast commanded are righteous and very faithful. 139 My zeal hath consumed me, because mine enemies have forgotten thy words. 140 Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it. 141 I am small and despised: yet do not I forget thy precepts. 142 Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth. 143 Trouble and anguish have taken hold on me: yet thy commandments are my delights. 144 The righteousness of thy testimonies is everlasting: give me understanding, and I shall live. 145 I cried with my whole heart; hear me, O LORD: I will keep thy statutes. 146 I cried unto thee; save me, and I shall keep thy testimonies. 147 I prevented the dawning of the morning, and cried: I hoped in thy word. 148 Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word. 149 Hear my voice according unto thy lovingkindness: O LORD, quicken me according to thy judgment. 150 They draw nigh that follow after mischief: they are far from thy law. 151 Thou art near, O LORD; and all thy commandments are truth. 152 Concerning thy testimonies, I have known of old that thou hast founded them for ever. 153 Consider mine affliction, and deliver me: for I do not forget thy law. 154 Plead my cause, and deliver me: quicken me according to thy word. 155 Salvation is far from the wicked: for they seek not thy statutes. 156 Great are thy tender mercies, O LORD: quicken me according to thy judgments. 157 Many are my persecutors and mine enemies; yet do I not decline from thy testimonies. 158 I beheld the transgressors, and was grieved; because they kept not thy word. 159 Consider how I love thy precepts: quicken me, O LORD, according to thy lovingkindness. 160 Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever. 161 Princes have persecuted me without a cause: but my heart standeth in awe of thy word. 162 I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil. 163 I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love. 164 Seven times a day do I praise thee because of thy righteous judgments. 165 Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them. 166 LORD, I have hoped for thy salvation, and done thy commandments. 167 My soul hath kept thy testimonies; and I love them exceedingly. 168 I have kept thy precepts and thy testimonies: for all my ways are before thee. 169 Let my cry come near before thee, O LORD: give me understanding according to thy word. 170 Let my supplication come before thee: deliver me according to thy word. 171 My lips shall utter praise, when thou hast taught me thy statutes. 172 My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness. 173 Let thine hand help me; for I have chosen thy precepts. 174 I have longed for thy salvation, O LORD; and thy law is my delight. 175 Let my soul live, and it shall praise thee; and let thy judgments help me. 176 I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek thy servant; for I do not forget thy commandments." Psalm 119
In just this one Psalm, the psalmist, over and over, speaks of the wonderous things of the Word of the Lord; knowing the Words and Laws of God, speaking of constantly having it on his lips night and day, keeping God's commandments, delighting in the law, etc.
How is it, then, that we can make excuses NOT to know the Word of the Almighty God? We cannot.
There is great emphasis in the church today on uniting professing Christians of all denominations and beliefs. The message is that we're not so different after all... we can work together. Setting aside theological differences, we can help each other in the things we all agree upon. That effort is commonly referred to as "ecumenism," which is defined as "the organized attempt to bring about the cooperation and unity of all believers in Christ."
The foundation for this ecumenical trend has been laid and built upon over many years. We saw the beginning of institutional ecumenism in the 1960's, with The World Council of Churches, mostly liberal mainline Protestant denominations who denied such essential doctrines as the inerrancy of Scripture and a literal, bodily resurrection of Christ. For years, Evangelicals distanced themselves from this institutional ecumenism because of the unsound theology of the groups involved.
Today, however, that spirit of compromise has invaded Evangelicalism. The more recent Catholic-Evangelical accord is an example of such compromise. In this accord, Evangelicals compromised essential doctrines such as justification by faith alone and the sufficiency of Scripture in order to unite with Roman Catholics on issues such as abortion and school prayer.
Compromising the Truth
The undiluted preaching from God's Word and an authoritative stand on truth seem to be on the decline. What we're seeing instead is a broadening of the gospel, a redefining of what it means to be a Christian, and a growing emphasis on inclusion and tolerance. Ecumenism has come to mean "reducing all elements of faith to the lowest common denominator. God's Word is neglected, experience is valued above truth, a false and selfish "faith" is promoted, and sound doctrine and correction are despised as "divisive" and "unloving."
Ignoring the Scriptures, numerous evangelical leaders today claim that a concern for doctrine causes division and therefore should be avoided for the sake of love and unity among the brethren. The Scriptures, however, couldn't be more specific in its opposition to such a teaching.
I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. [Romans 16:17]
Divisions are created by teachings that are contrary to sound doctrine.
"Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son" [2 John 1:9].
Unity in the faith is impossible without the doctrine of Christ. Without such a foundation we have no basis for the faith, for the gospel, for knowing Jesus, or for knowing anything pertinent to the Truth.
The glittering terminology of ecumenical is seen, on close examination, to be as hollow as a soap bubble and just as slippery and hard to hold onto. Where is the "common ground" between belief and unbelief? A believer cannot ignore the "major theological differences" between him and an unbeliever. Instead, he should be cutting through those differences with the Sword of the Word to win the unbeliever to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. I cannot agree to ignore an unbeliever's condition without, by that very act, compromising my beliefs. For my beliefs include the Great Commission, which requires me to tell the world of the gospel of Jesus.
Modern Christian Ecumenical Movements
Even a cursory review of what has taken place in the Church during the last 25 years will reveal a fierce undermining of the faith. Precisely as the Bible warns (Mt. 7:21-23; 24:4,11,24; 2 Thes 2:3; etc.), today's most effective enemies of Christ are those who claim to be Christians and call mankind not just to any old false religion but to a counterfeit Christianity. Consider some of the following:
Those who get involved with Promise Keepers are trained in a mixture of humanistic psychology and corrupt Christianity. Men attending a massive 1993 Promise Keepers conference were given complimentary copies of The Masculine Journey: Understanding the Six Stages of Manhood by psychotherapist Robert Hicks. In a review of this book, T.A. McMahon notes:
"The book, written to help 'provide directions for a man's life so that he doesn't get lost along the way,' is mainly psychologically biased conjecture centering around six Hebrew words. In chapter after chapter, subjective insights into manhood are offered through quotes by a host of secular authors with a psychological bent, including Carl Jung, inner-healing therapist Leanne Payne, transpersonal psychiatrist/spiritualist Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, and Sam Keen, former theologian in residence at Esalen, the New Age/Eastern mystical therapeutic center south of San Francisco.
The Promise Keepers' movement is part of an ecumenical trend of down-playing doctrine for unity that puts aside essential theological issues in order to promote a unity which is not biblical unity. Are false doctrines being addressed? Are the people in these churches challenged to flee their false religious systems? The answer is "No." Key foundational issues have been dropped, all for the sake of supposed unity.
The men who are reached through this ministry are not necessarily brought into sound New Testament churches and grounded in the truth. They are not being taught to keep themselves pure from apostasy and heresy. They are not being trained in discerning false gospels from the true. Rather they will be instructed in unscriptural ecumenism as they are sent back to their church congregation or parish to become active laymen. They are being taught that doctrine is not crucial, that to fight for the truth is unspiritual. They are even being encouraged to accept apostate denominations as genuine expressions of Christianity. There is so much theological diversity among those involved with Promise Keepers that no in-depth discussion of Scripture or what it means to be a Christian could take place without tearing the movement apart. If one followed the doctrines of some of the groups involved in this movement, one could not even be a Christian. And if one is not a Christian, nothing that person does will enable him or her to be godly.
EVANGELICALS AND CATHOLICS TOGETHER
On March 29, 1994, leading evangelicals and Catholics signed a joint declaration, "Evangelicals and Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the 3rd. Millennium." Contained within the document, which attempts to bring ecumenical unity, are some seriously compromising agreements regarding proselytizing and doctrinal distinctions.
The 25-page document, originated by Chuck Colson and Catholic social critic Richard John Neuhaus, was signed by 40 noted evangelical and Catholic leaders including Pat Robertson, heads of the Home Mission Board and Christian Life Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, Bill Bright - founder of Campus Crusade for Christ, Mark Noll of Wheaton University, Os Guinness, Jesse Miranda (Assemblies of God), Richard Mauw (President , Fuller Seminary), J.I. Packer and Herbert Schlossberg.
It called for Catholic and evangelical cooperation on social and cultural issues where both traditions share common goals, one example being the fight against abortion. The accord also stressed mutual allegiance to the Apostles' Creed, world evangelism, justification "by grace through faith because of Christ," and encouraged "civil" discourse over doctrinal differences.
You can't believe two contradictory propositions at the same time!
You can't believe Christ obtained redemption through His blood and also believe redemption is being accomplished through Catholic liturgy.
You can't believe salvation is by faith and "not of works" and at the same time believe that good works earn salvation.
Only 35 short years ago Roman Catholicism was included among the "modern Cults" about which Harold Lindsell warned his students in a course by that name at Fuller. Today, in spite of its false gospel of works and ritual which millions of martyrs faithfully opposed to the death, Catholicism is embraced by our most trusted evangelical leaders.
While ECT and later agreements may allow some "convergence and cooperation" between evangelicals and Catholics in many public tasks, there remains some important differences including "the meaning of baptismal regeneration, the Eucharist ... diverse understandings of merit, reward, purgatory, and indulgences; Marian devotion and the assistance of the saints in the lives of salvation..."
One often hears the naive expression, especially in justifying the new ecumenical acceptance of Roman Catholics as Christians, "I embrace all those as brethren who 'love Jesus' and 'name the name of Christ.'" Yet many cultists profess to love Jesus and almost all "name the name of Christ." One must discern what is meant by such words.
The gospel of God's grace is denied by every cult and false religion, including Roman Catholicism, where infant baptism removes original sin and makes one a child of God, salvation is in the church and its sacraments, redemption is an ongoing process of perpetually offering the body and blood of Christ upon its altars, and good works merit acceptance with God. Catholics ask the saints to pray for them. This is strictly unbiblical. We are explicitly taught that "No man comes to the Father except through Me" (Christ). Praying to "saints" is considered idol worship. This is an exclusive doctrine of the Catholic Church, in conflict with the Word of God. The Pope is NOT GOD, nor is he any holier than anyone who has accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior. As well, there is no intercessor for Christians other than Jesus and the Holy Spirit. The Bible makes this abundantly clear.
1.Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us." (Romans 8:34)
2. "Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He ever lives to make intercession for them." (Hebrews 7:25)
3. "Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God." (Romans 8:26-27)
The first two verses are referring to Jesus' intercessory ministry that He has for each of us and the third verse is referring direct to the Holy Spirit Himself. Notice in the first and third verses the exact same words are being used in reference to Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Those same exact words are that They both "make intercession for us."
In the Gospels of the New Testament, Jesus specifically tells us that we are to pray direct to God the Father. We are to pray in the NAME OF JESUS CHRIST! We are not to pray to any dead saints who are living in heaven. We are to only pray directly to God the Father, in the name of Jesus, if we have any specific prayer requests.
These three verses are giving us an incredible revelation in that not only should all born-again believers pray direct to God the Father, but that Jesus and the Holy Spirit will also be praying direct to God the Father for all of us as well.
John 14:6 "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."