In heaven, our prayers have form. They have impact and they ascend before God like the fragrant aroma of a sweet, pleasing incense. Meditate on the imagery found in the Bible.
David, that famous King of Israel from long ago, that great man of faith who took down Goliath, happened to be both a poet and a musician. David is well remembered for the beautiful Psalms he penned - quoted throughout the Bible.
Many of David's Psalms express worshipful sentiments; some record his prayers. In Psalm 141, David cries out to the Lord saying, “Let my prayer be set forth before you as incense.”
Prayer as Incense
Prayer as incense? Yes! And the imagery provides a beautiful, vivid description of the spiritual impact our prayers can have. God has always wanted to be accessible to people. In early scripture, God gave the priests instructions for the part of the Tabernacle where prayer and sacrifice would occur. The priests were to offer incense, sweet incense, when entering God’s presence.
Let my prayer be set forth before you as incense. Psalm 141:2
The imagery is unmistakeable, the priests would carry the burdens and cares of the people, and God would receive them as if they were incense; both sweet and pleasing to Him. The concerns of God’s people would not go unnoticed. Rather, God would accept them as beautiful and impactful.
Later on in scripture, we are given a glimpse of our prayers in heaven. In Revelation 8:3, an angel offers the prayers of God’s people, mixed with incense, to ascend up before God’s throne. The prayers of the faithful are not just mere abstractions. In heaven, they have form and impact. God is aware of our prayers, they ascend meaningfully and pleasingly before His throne.
...there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints... Revelation 8:3
Prayer & Meditation Let’s meditate on the imagery scripture provides us. And let’s pray in faith, with the assurance that in heaven our prayers have form. They have impact and they ascend before God like the fragrant aroma of a sweet, pleasing incense.