Pay Attention, All Who Are Learned




1. Open up the treasury door for us, Lord, at the prayers of our supplications; let our prayers serve as our ambassador, reconciling us with Your Divinity. Listen, all who are wise, pay attention, all who are learned, acquire understanding and knowledge, seeing that you are instructed and wise, I will relate before you the accomplishments of holy prayer.


2. Prayer divided the Red Sea, allowing the People to cross through its midst; by the same prayer the sea was reunited once more, swallowing up Pharoah, the rebellious and impious. Prayer brought down manna from heaven, prayer brought the quails from the sea, prayer struck the rock in the desert, causing water to gush forth for the thirsty.


3. Blessed is the person who has consented to become the close friend of faith and of prayer: he lives in singlemindedness and makes prayer and faith stop by with him. Prayer that rises up in someone’s heart serves to open up for us the door of heaven: that person stands in converse with the Divinity and gives pleasure to the Son of God. Prayer makes peace with the Lord’s anger and with the vehemence of his wrath. In this way too, tears that well up in the eyes can open the door of compassion.


4. Come, let us look at those warriors who conquered, who excelled in both faith and prayer. Prayer caused the sun to stop in its course at Gibeon and the moon at the field of Ayyalon; it overturned the sevenfold walls of Jericho that mighty city; it brought devastation to Amalek with its king, it slew Sisera along with Madon, Sihon, Og and all their princes, giving their land as an inheritance to Israel, the People of God.


5. I will show you, my brethren, what faith and prayer have effected: the prayer which held back the sun at Gibeon can hold back evil from us: He who held back the moon at the field of Ayyalon, who overthrew the sevenfold walls of Jericho that mighty city, who drove off Amalek along with its king, will drive off and break into pieces the might of Satan.


6. Prayer gave manna to the people, and by the same prayer the just are nourished. The prayer that bound the heavens released them too, just as it had first bound them. Prayer brought down from heaven the fire that devoured the sacrifice and licked up the water; prayer seized and finished off the four hundred and fifty priests of Baal.


7. For forty days prayer accompanied the prophet in the recesses of his cave on Horeb; he openly conversed with the Deity. Fiery chariots were harnessed and descended, they took him up, ascending with him to the God whom he loved. The Watchers on high rejoiced at the ascent of the prophet to heaven in his body.


8. Prayer shut up and fettered the mouths of lions inside the pit, so that the just Daniel was not harmed. Prayer preserved the Three Children in the Furnace of fire. Prayer opened up the wombs of barren women, providing them with heirs. Such are the wonders that prayer and faith have continuously brought about—and there are others even greater than these.

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