Picture praying in God’s throne room . . .
Praying is not only an action, but also a location.
When you pray, you draw near to the throne room of God. The writer of Hebrews reminds us that Jesus is our Great High Priest (Heb. 2:17; 4:16) and urges us to boldly draw near in confidence to God’s throne.
Thinking about prayer this way changes how you approach God with your prayers.
Let’s apply a Bible study method (learn more Bible study techniques) and examine each word/phrase found in Hebrews 4:16.*
“Let us then with confidence draw near”
This is a priceless invitation for those who place their faith in Jesus alone as their Savior and trust Him as Lord of their life.
Jesus came to die in our place so nothing—no temple veil, no priest, no sacrifice—could stop us from coming into His presence. He rose from the dead, so we can have confidence in Whom we approach.
Let’s be clear: We are not to pray to anyone or anything else (no objects, no people—alive or deceased). That steals our worship from God—it’s not biblical, and it insults God. Instead, we are invited into a personal, daily relationship with Jesus.
Yes, you are invited to come and speak plainly with Him at any time. You do not need to compose your prayers carefully or fear punishment when you approach Him unannounced.
When you draw near to God, know that He loves to talk with you. He cherishes your prayers because they are evidence of the intimate friendship you share. So, you can speak honestly with Him and near Him.
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace”
This is a beautiful picture of us having access to our sovereign God (approaching His throne) and receiving undeserved loving-kindness (grace).
God has every right to invite us to a throne of justice, but who could approach a throne like that? None of us want what our actions truly deserve in thought, word, and deed (Rom. 3:10). Instead God invites you to His throne of grace.
That’s because God’s free gift of grace saves us (Eph. 2:8-10). Yet, God’s grace extends beyond the moment of salvation. We need His grace each day to sustain us and change us (1 Cor. 15:10). We need God’s presence in every decision, in every relationship—and Jesus provides “grace upon grace” (John 1:16).
When we understand who we are and our desperate need for God each day, our hearts soften. Our self-righteousness (which is the enemy of the gospel) fades, and our dependence on God strengthens our relationship with Him as we draw near to His throne of grace.
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace that we may receive mercy and find grace”
It is a glorious gift to not receive what we deserve (mercy), but instead receive what we do not deserve (grace). God is so kind to us and shows us His love in so many ways.
You can trust Him with your private thoughts, needs, desires, and requests, because He is good. We never have to question God’s goodness—just look at the cross of Jesus to see how good God is to us.
Receiving God’s mercy and grace is what our hearts long for and what Jesus sacrificed everything to provide.
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
You’ve realized your need for God’s grace. You’ve approached His throne with confidence to receive it. Now, you must trust God with the details.
He knows what you need when you need it. God’s timing is always perfect because He controls time. The Old Testament book of Daniel describes God as the “Ancient of Days” (Dan. 7:9), and we learn in the book of Isaiah that God existed before time began (Isa. 43:13). God carefully planned the moment of sending His Son, Jesus, in the “fullness of time” (Gal. 4:4).
When approaching God’s throne with your prayer requests, remember Who God is, what He has done, and His timing is perfect.
He may answer your prayer right away. Or, He may have you wait because He is changing the circumstances, or changing others—or changing you. Sometimes He may not answer in the way you want your prayers answered, but He will always give you His grace or mercy (in the form of strength, wisdom, peace, and more).
You can trust God to meet your needs at the right time and in the right way with the grace only He can provide.
God’s throne room is unlike any throne on earth.
He is seated on grace. He gives you grace. His grace is sufficient to meet your needs at the right time. Because Jesus is our Great High Priest, you can draw near to the throne of grace.
The Lord says, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9 NIV). You are called to persevere, and you have been given the grace to see you through your journey—your story with God and His purpose for you.
What a priceless, beautiful, glorious, and timely picture you can dwell on when you approach God’s throne room in prayer. Take a moment now to approach God’s throne of grace.
Have you drawn near to God’s throne room and experienced His grace in your life? Share your story in the comments below. We would love to hear from you.
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*C. Tomlinson, “The Practice of Praying in the Throne Room of God,” The Gospel Coalition, posted on May 13, 2010.