Praying with the Church is designed to provide a biblical basis for supplementing personal, spontaneous prayers by learning to use set prayers and to use them at set times. I call these prayers “sacred rhythms” of prayer. The book then introduces readers to the major prayer books of the Church. Here’s the prayer this week from The Book of Common Prayer as printed in Phyllis Tickle, The Divine Hours:
We thank you, heavenly Father, that you have delivered us from the dominion of sin and death and brought us into the kingdom of your Son; and we pray that, as by his death he has recalled us to life, so by his love he may raise us to eternal joys; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
How appropriate for this blog this week to have a prayer of thanks for deliverance from sin — which we might call basic mistrust — and from death — which is the result of sin.
Observe that the thanksgiving is for being delivered from the dominion of sin and death; not just personal temptations but the systemic problem of sin. Sin, turned loose among cracked Eikons, becomes a dominion of sin and death.
The paradox now emerges: the Son’s death recalls us to life and his love raises us to eternal joys.
This little ending “who lives …” is standard for BCP prayers, and we can’t be reminded enough of our Trinitarian faith.