Hi there, just wondering if there are passages in the Bible that indicate that we should pray to Saints or to the Virgin for that matter. I love doing so, but I’m not sure how I could defend this issue to non-Catholics.
Check this out, it’s from the faith section of this Catholic Answers site:
It mentions relevant parts of Scripture.
Check Revelations chapters 4, 5 and 6.
None. There is no Biblical defense. Appealing to Revelation (no S) 5:8 is so absurd it doesn’t warrant a response. Unless you believe there are 24 male saints and prayers sit in bowls until a saint offers it with incense, then appealing to Revelation is ridiculous.
There are many examples of the principle of one saint asking another saint for intercession in the Bible. Perhaps this article will help. :o
Praying to Saints: A Visual Aid
I have an article on my blog that covers this.
The Intercession & Communion of Saints
When we pray to the Saints, it’s like asking your friends or family to pray for your intentions (see James 5:16). I’m sure Protestants wouldn’t hesitate to ask friends or family to pray for their intentions and, typically, the people we usually ask are people we feel confident have a good prayer life (would you ask an atheist to offer prayers for your intentions?). Who better to ask than the Saints? This doesn’t preclude your own prayers to God, it just gets a team going for your intentions!
Now the only question can be, “Do the Saints hear us?” Revelation 5:8 does address this in that prayers are presented by these holy ones to the Lord.
Check out biblical references to praying to Saints at www.staycatholic.com - look at the “Doctrinal Concordance of the Bible” PDF file on their site (and print off a free copy!:))
If only your Bible was Church-based…
I suggest the OP watch this two minute video: Praying to Mary - A Biblical Defense
Your comment makes no sense. The OP asked for a Biblical defense. There isn’t one. Prayers in bowls sitting next to 24 Elders does not even remotely support praying to departed Saints. It’s SYMBOLIC.
Like I said, if only your Bible was Church-based - You’d suffer no confusion with any book of the Bible, especially Revelation.
The bowls are symbolic of prayers received by the elders in heaven, you are correct.
But of course, in addition to that, one member of the body of Christ asking another member of the body of Christ for intercessory prayer is all over the New Testament. So is the concept that the body of Christ is united. Some interpreters try to cut-off the heavenly members from the earthly members, which is of course, impossible as well as unbiblical.
Yep, that certainly give a clear picture.
Which is more absurd…the saints praying and offering prayers to God for the salvation of man? Or the saints, in their boredom in Heaven, playing hide and seek?
Or do you think this is absurd too:
Revelation 8:3-4 (King James Version)
3And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.
4And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.
Do you believe there are angels in heaven? Or you do not believe so?
Of course it’s symbolic. Symbolic of what?
Not to be against, mind you, but your position is unfounded, the Church is to be Bible based, for it is the Church, if my understanding of history is correct, the Catholic Church, that assembled the Bible for believers and the world, and declares is to be of God and therefore agrees that it is True. Hence it is the Church that says that believers should believe the Bible as True.
People change, the world changes, creation changes, but the Word of God, the Truth, never changes, it is fulfilled.
If a painter paints a painting that inspires revelation from God you don’t worship the painting and you don’t pray to the painter. For that is not the reason the painter painted the panting, is it?
Where in this does it say one should pray to those Saints who have passed on?
James:5:16: Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
To use Rev:5:8 doesn’t stand, reason being, Abraham is a Saint though he passed on, how lone was it until what God promised him was fulfilled? King David is a Saint how lone was it until God fulfilled what was promised him? the Apostles are Saints how lone will it take for God to fulfill what was promised them? The prayers of the Saints remain before God in God’s Presence (note the importance of that, that the Saints prayers are in God’s Presence, not some one else’s, though the Saints are in God’s Presence) until all is fulfilled. And that fulfillment is in Christ Jesus the Lamb that approached the Throne of God the received the fulfillment in His Name.
But if you want use what is written in Rev. Then look to this in what is the relationship that is of Heaven and those who are in it, with those who are yet in this flesh. When John bowed to a person in heaven, what did that person say?
9: And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
10:** And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God:** for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
I think the closest thing you’ll find in a Catholic Bible to praying to the saints are the words addressed to them in Daniel 3:86 by the three young men in the fiery furnace:
O ye spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord: praise and exalt him above all for ever.
Unfortunately, Daniel 3:86 is now missing from most non-Catholic Bibles, one of the byproducts of the Protestant Reformation. The Protestant Reformers were so against the Catholic doctrine of the Communion of Saints and other Catholic doctrines, such as Purgatory and indulgences, that they removed whole Old Testament books or parts of Old Testament books, like this verse of Daniel, from the Christian Bible that even hinted support for the Catholic doctrine.
The next closest thing you’ll find in both Catholic and non-Catholic Bibles to praying to the saints are those places in the Psalms where the psalmist addresses the angels:
Bless the LORD, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, hearkening to the voice of his word! Bless the LORD, all his hosts, his ministers that do his will! (Psalm 103:21-22)
Praise him, all his angels, praise him, all his host! (Psalm 148:2).
Checked them. Not really convinced.