Essay / Theology

Invoking God the Father

Father, who so loved the world that you gave your only Son;

Father, whose love was made manifest in sending your Son into the world so we may live through him;

Father, who predestined us in love to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ;

Father, who loved us so much that we should be called, and should actually be, sons of God;

Father, who has sent the Spirit of your Son into our hearts crying “Abba, Father;”

Father, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places;

Father, who chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before you;

Father, who has delivered us from the powers of darkness and translated us into the kingdom of your dear Son;

Father, who has qualified to share in the inheritance of the saints in light;

Father, who loved us, and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace;

Father, who by your great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ;

Father of mercies and God of all comfort;

Father, who makes your sun rise on the good and the evil, and sends your rain on the just and the unjust;

Father, who judges no man, but has given all judgment to the Son;

Father, who has life in yourself, and has given the Son also to have life in himself;

Father, who has sent your Son Jesus, so that everyone who looks at him and believes in him may have everlasting life, and be raised up on the last day;

Father of Jesus, who gives us the true bread from heaven;

Father, who sees our secrets,

Father, who knows everything we need,

Father, Lord of heaven and earth, who has hidden the knowledge of your Son from the wise and prudent, but revealed it to little ones,

Father, who seeks those who will worship in spirit and in truth,

Father, from whom all fatherhood in heaven and earth is named,

Father of all, who is above all,

Father of lights, from whom comes every perfect gift, with whom is no change or shadow of turning,

conform us to the image of your Son, that he may be the firstborn among many brothers, and that your name –Father!– may be hallowed on earth as it is in heaven.

(This invocation is based on the opening pages of Emile Guerry’s book of mediations on God the Father (NY: Sheed and Ward, 1947). I changed it a lot, ESV-ing his wonky translation and re-arranging the sequence of the verses. For more extended biblical meditation on God the Father, see the opening chapter of John Owen’s Communion with God.)

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