Q: #143. Why do we pray in Jesus' name?
By: Steve Shirley
A: While on the Earth as a man, Jesus told us that we are to pray to the Father (God) (Mt 6:6). He did this while praying, and also gave us the best known example of this in the Lord's Prayer (Mt 6:9-13)(Lk 11:2-4). However, as we spoke about in the previous question, as well as other studies on this site, we cannot approach the Father without blood being shed to cover our sins. When Jesus died on the cross, His blood was shed to pay for our sins for eternity, and He is the mediator between God (the Father) and man (1 Tim 2:5)(Heb 9:15).
Once we become children of God through Jesus (Gal 3:26), we are given the PRIVILEGE of being able to go "boldly to the throne" of God (Heb 4:16) at ANY time with any need. We do this in Jesus' name because He told us to "ask in His name," and also gave us promises connected with doing so.
(Jn 14:13-14) And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. (14) If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
(Jn 15:16) ... that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
(Also see: Jn 16:23-26)
Isn't that an AMAZING promise? We can receive ANYTHING if we pray in Jesus' name! We should remember, however, that our focus in prayer should always be to conform our will to God's will, not trying to conform His will to ours. We need to keep in mind that God has a perfect plan for each of our lives, and knows exactly what we need. If we are asking for things in prayer that are not His will for our lives (1 Jn 5:14), or that consume upon our lusts (James 4:3), we will not receive them.