Sunday, February 10, 2008

Barth on Prayer

My friend Dr. Eddie Carder, a professor of Philosophy and Faith and Ethics, called me up a few days ago and sent me to his website. Turns out, I have lots of friends with blogs and websites who haven't said anything to me about their blogs and websites. More on that later. Suckers.

Anyways, Eddie sent me over there where I read this quote by Karl Barth, one of my all-time favorite theologians. Barth changed my world as a young 17 year old doubter, teetering on the edge of Universalism, and now again, something has changed in me since a few days ago when I read this here quote on prayer, a subject that has always been mysterious, but lately has been a... struggle.

"God is not deaf, he listens; more than that, he acts. He does not act in the same way whether we pray or not. Prayer exerts an influence upon God's action, even upon his existence. That is what the word 'answer' means. ... The fact that God yields to man's petitions, changing his intentions in response to man's prayer, is not a sign of weakness. He himself, in the glory of his majesty and power, has so willed it."

Here is another from Barth on prayer. I love this one as well.

"To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world."

1 comment:

Roy said...

Where in Barth's corpus do these two quotes come from? I'd love to read them in context. To be specific, I'm trying to make sense of prayer and believe Barth may help me in the task. The problem is that he's so... verbose(?) that I'm not sure where to begin. I like these quotes and think they will be good starting points.

Roy Matthewson