Also when I cry and shout, he shuts out my prayer.
I. Although our prayers were never, in a single instance, directly answered in this world, YET IS PRAYER NOT IN VAIN, FOE TO PRAY IS A COMMANDED DUTY; and to the dependent creature it can never be unprofitable to obey a Divine command. Prayer, in its very nature, tends to mortify sin, to compose our minds into a frame of devout dependence on Almighty power, and to maintain in us sentiments of habitual trust, and rejoicing confidence in God.
II. Though prayer be not immediately answered, IT MAY NEVERTHELESS BE ANSWERED AT SOME AFTER PERIOD, even in the present world. The glory of God, the arrangements of Providence, and our own good, may render delay expedient; but delay is not denial
III. The thing we ask MAY BE INCONSISTENT WITH THE RECTITUDE OF THE DIVINE SOVEREIGNTY, and on that account must necessarily be denied.
IV. IT IS NOT ALWAYS IN WRATH, HOWEVER, THAT OUR PRAYERS FOR OTHERS ARE NOT HEARD, BUT OFTEN IN MERCY TO THEM. In our fond attachment to children or to friends, we would detain them from God and glory, to suffer amid the evils of time. In our ignorance we ask things detrimental for ourselves as well as for others. In labour, poverty, and trouble, we seek ease, and peace, and competency, and freedom from affliction; but it may enter into God's plan for preserving and perfecting us, to withhold from us health and a prosperous state. And, besides, the thing we desired may be refused, in order to give us something better than we sought. Oh, what need there is of the Spirit to help our infirmities! for we know neither what we should pray for, nor as we ought.
V. When we pray to God, it becomes us to REMEMBER THE INFINITE DISTANCE BETWIXT THE CREATURE AND THE GLORIOUS CREATOR; AND THOUGH EARNEST, LET US BEWARE OF BEING WILFUL AND PEREMPTORY.
(J. Sievewright, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Also when I cry and shout, he shutteth out my prayer.