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Positions of Prayer (Part 4) “Kneeling’ and “Praying toward Jerusalem or the Temple’

Well, glory to God we continue with the subject of positions of prayer part four. The first position of kneeling in prayer is known of as quite common especially in the Catholic and Episcopal churches. Many of the above make accommodation for kneeling in church by putting kneeling pads in front of the seats. It is common for people to kneel along the altar. Church groups such as the Baptist etc. may sometimes kneel at the altar but not during the meeting. As you may know customs differ with the different church groups.

According to my count kneeling is the 3rd most common position of prayer in the Bible, it is mentioned 27 times. Yet it is well behind praying with the hands lifted up (147 times) and lying prostrate (131 times).

We will also look at ‘praying toward Jerusalem or the Temple ‘. This position is given 20 times for 4 th place! I am going to give the scriptures on this position and then share a powerful comment. I often pray toward Jerusalem !

Now for the scriptures on kneeling: The common Hebrew words is: 3665 kana` (kaw-nah’); a primitive root; properly, to bend the knee ; hence, to humiliate, vanquish:

King James Version translates it as — bring down (low), into subjection, under, humble (self), subdue. Often the word kneeling is missed in that the word is translated in different ways.
The only Bible that I know that seeks always to be faithful to the Hebrew or Greek word ‘all’ the time is the Heritage Bible. It can be found on the web at: http://www.cathedraluniversity.com/heritagebible/index.asp
Dr. Gwin Turner is also on my board of directors. Here we will just let the scripture say what is says.

27 times kneeling down is associated with prayer!
Matthew 17:14 “And they having come to the crowd, a man came near to him (Jesus), kneeling down to him, and saying, Lord, have mercy.’

Mark 1:40 “Then a leper came to Him, imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.”

Mark 10:17 “And he going out into the way, one running near, and kneeling to him , asked him, Inherently good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?’

Luke 22:41 And He was withdrawn from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and prayed,

Luke 5:8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees , saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!”
Luke 22:41 “And He (Jesus) was withdrawn from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and prayed.’

Acts 7:60 “Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.’

Acts 9:40 “But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed.’

Acts 20:36 “And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all.’

Acts 21:5 “When we had come to the end of those days, we departed and went on our way; and they all accompanied us, with wives and children, till we were out of the city. And we knelt down on the shore and prayed.’

Romans 14:11 “For it is written: “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to God.”
Ephesians 3:14 “For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.’
Philippians 2:10,11 “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow , of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

I Kings 8:54 “And so it was, when Solomon had finished praying all this prayer and supplication to the LORD, that he arose from before the altar of the LORD, from kneeling on his knees with his hands spread up to heaven.’

I Kings 18:42 “So Ahab went up to eat and drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel ; then he bowed down on the ground, and put his face between his knees.’
2 Chronicles 6:13 “(for Solomon had made a bronze platform five cubits long, five cubits wide, and three cubits high, and had set it in the midst of the court; and he stood on it , knelt down on his knees before all the assembly of Israel, and spread out his hands toward heaven);’
2 Chronicles 7:3 “And all the children of Israel saw the fire come down and the heavy glory of Jehovah upon the house, and they bent down on their knees with their nostrils to the ground upon the pavement, and prostrated themselves, and raised their hands to Jehovah, because of his goodness, because of his eternal mercy.’

2 Chronicles 7:14 “And if my people which are called by my name shall bend their knees , and judge in prayer, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will attentively hear from the heavens, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’

2 Chronicles 12:6,7 “And the princes of Israel and the king bent their knees, and they said, Jehovah is righteous. And when Jehovah saw that they bent their knees, the word of Jehovah was to Shemaiah, saying, They have bent their knees ; I will not destroy them.’

2 Chronicles 12:12 “And when he bent his knees the nostrils of Jehovah turned back from him, and he did not destroy him completely, and also in Judah words were good .

2 Chronicles 29:29 And when they had made an end of offering, the king and all found with him bent their knees , and prostrated themselves.

2 Chronicles 34:27 “Because your heart was soft, and you bent your knees before the face of God when you attentively heard his words against this place and against its inhabitants, and you bent your knees before my face, and tore your clothes, and wept before my face – even also I have attentively heard you — An oracle of Jehovah.’

Ezra 9:5 “At the evening sacrifice I arose from my fasting; and having torn my garment and my robe, I fell on my knees and spread out my hands to the LORD my God.

Psalms 95:6 “Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD our Maker.’
Isaiah 45:22-23 “Look to Me, and be saved, all you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself; the word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that to Me every knee shall bow , every tongue shall take an oath.’

Daniel 6:10 “Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem , he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.’

Daniel 10:10 “Suddenly, a hand touched me, which made me tremble on my knees and on the palms of my hands.’

Now lets look at praying toward Jerusalem or the Temple : Praying toward Jerusalem or the Temple in Jerusalem. 20 times praying toward Jerusalem or the Temple is given.
I Kings 8:29-30 “That Your eyes may be open toward this temple night and day, toward the place of which You said, ‘My name shall be there,’ that You may hear the prayer which Your servant makes toward this place.’ “And may You hear the supplication of Your servant and of Your people Israel , when they pray toward this place. Hear in heaven Your dwelling place; and when You hear, forgive.

I Kings 8:33 “When your people Israel are defeated before an enemy because they have sinned against You, and when they turn back to You and confess Your name, and pray and make supplication to You in this temple.’

I Kings 8:35 “When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against You, when they pray toward this place and confess Your name, and turn from their sin because You afflict them,

I Kings 8:38 “Whatever prayer, whatever supplication is made by anyone, or by all Your people Israel, when each one knows the plague of his own heart, and spreads out his hands toward this temple:

I Kings 8:42 “For they will hear of Your great name and Your strong hand and Your outstretched arm, when he comes and prays toward this temple.’

I Kings 8:44 “When Your people go out to battle against their enemy, wherever You send them, and when they pray to the LORD toward the city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name,

I Kings 8:48 “And when they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their enemies who led them away captive, and pray to You toward their land which You gave to their fathers, the city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name.’

2 Chronicles 6:20-21 “That Your eyes may be open toward this temple day and night, toward the place where You said You would put Your name, that You may hear the prayer which Your servant prays toward this place.’
“And may You hear the supplications of Your servant and of Your people Israel , when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and when You hear, forgive.’

2 Chronicles 6:24 “Or if Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy because they have sinned against You, and return and confess Your name, and pray and make supplication before You in this temple.’

2 Chronicles 6:26 “When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against You, when they pray toward this place and confess Your name, and turn from their sin because You afflict them.’

2 Chronicles 6:29 “Whatever prayer, whatever supplication is made by anyone, or by all Your people Israel , when each one knows his own burden and his own grief, and spreads out his hands to this temple.’

2 Chronicles 6:34 “When Your people go out to battle against their enemies, wherever You send them, and when they pray to You toward this city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name.’

2 Chronicles 6:38 “And when they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their captivity, where they have been carried captive, and pray toward their land which You gave to their fathers, the city which You have chosen, and toward the temple which I have built for Your name:

Psalms 5:7 “But as for me, I will come into Your house in the multitude of Your mercy; in fear of You I will worship toward Your holy temple.’
Psalms 28:1-2 “Hear the voice of my supplications when I cry to You, when I lift up my hands toward Your holy sanctuary.’
Psalms 138:2 “I will worship toward Your holy temple, and praise Your name for Your loving kindness and Your truth; for You have magnified Your word above all Your name.’

Daniel 6:10 “Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem , he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.’
Jonah 2:4 “Then I said, ‘I have been cast out of Your sight; yet I will look again toward Your holy temple.’

It was only during my walk with the cross around the world that I ever considered praying toward Jerusalem . I think it was when I entered Moslem countries and saw how men in the streets would stop and pray toward Mecca . I began to read the scriptures and saw that over and over people were to pray toward Jerusalem .
Often while I was with the cross, I would meet people in the street who would be kneeling in prayer right there in the street. What should I do? Walk on, or just stop and wait for the prayers to end, what would I do. It was then that I felt led of the Lord to lay out prostrate and pray toward Jerusalem . It appeared I was praying toward Mecca . They would always ask about me lying down praying toward Mecca . I would tell them that I was praying to Jesus toward Jerusalem They were always shocked to see me doing this but deeply moved because I was lying flat out and they were only kneeling.

On several occasions I have been in the office of Arabic Moslem ambassadors in New York at the United Nations. It would come prayer time and they would pull out their prayer rugs and bow and kneel in prayer toward Mecca . I would lay face down and pray to Jesus toward Jerusalem . They were always deeply touched and always wanted to talk to me about praying and Jesus. Several times I led the ambassador in prayer to Jesus because of my actions and message of Jesus.
Even now as I travel the world and lay down to pray each night and in the morning I lay in the direction of Jerusalem or the way that I am to walk that day! I just love to do this. I feel great glory and release of the Holy Spirit.
I now invite you to kneel in prayer and also pray toward Jerusalem ! It’s in the Bible so fear not.

Pilgrim followers of Jesus,

Arthur and Denise Blessitt

Luke 18:1

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