3.8 How can I pray with a text from the Bible?
The Bible contains the Word that God wants to say to you. Praying with a text from Scripture is something that becomes easier through frequent practice. You will not only grow in faith by praying with texts that make you feel good or that you can easily relate to, but also by praying with texts that you might find difficult to understand.
Frequently using texts from the New Testament in your prayers is a good thing, as it helps you to grow in your relationship with Jesus. Try to get inside the story, imagine what happened, and get to know Jesus better by engaging with the texts.
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The Wisdom of the Church
What are the sources of Christian prayer?
They are: the Word of God which gives us “the surpassing knowledge” of Christ (Philippians 3:8); the Liturgy of the Church that proclaims, makes present and communicates the mystery of salvation; the theological virtues; and everyday situations because in them we can encounter God. [CCCC 558]
Can you learn to pray from the Bible?
The Bible is like a wellspring of prayer. To pray with the Word of God means to use the words and events of the Bible for one’s own prayer. “To be ignorant of Scripture is to be ignorant of Christ” (St. Jerome).
Sacred Scripture, especially the Psalms and the New Testament, are a valuable treasury; in it we find the most beautiful and most powerful prayers of the Judeo-Christian world. Reciting these prayers unites us with millions of people from all times and cultures who have prayed, but above all with Christ himself, who is present in all these prayers. [Youcat 491]
This is what the Popes say
Prayer should accompany the reading of sacred Scripture… As Saint Augustine puts it: “Your prayer is the word you speak to God. When you read the Bible, God speaks to you; when you pray, you speak to God”. Origen, one of the great masters of this way of reading the Bible, maintains that understanding Scripture demands, even more than study, closeness to Christ and prayer. [He] gave this advice: “Devote yourself to the lectio of the divine Scriptures; apply yourself to this with perseverance. Do your reading with the intent of believing in and pleasing God. [Pope Benedict XVI, Verbum Domini, n. 86]