1 Timothy 2:8
I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling
This verse, I am sorry to say, probably belongs with the preceding section, but I wasn’t looking ahead like I should. Regardless, we will discuss just this one verse.
In verse 1 we learned that prayer was to be for all people; that there is no person so far from God’s grace that they shouldn’t be prayed for. Here we learn that prayer is to be in every place; that there is no place so far from God’s grace where prayer shouldn’t be offered. Here though we learn that God has certain desires of those who pray; namely, that their hands should be holy, without anger or quarreling.
In contrast, Isaiah 1:15 tells us what God does with those individuals who pray and do not have holy hands.
When you spread out your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood.
When men have defiled and sinful hands, God leaves the room and stops up his ears. Verse 16 goes on in Isaiah:
Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.
Oddly enough, the only way for a man to wash blood from his hands is to wash them in the blood of the Lamb. Jesus Christ is the only one who makes dirty hands clean. He is the only one who can take the angry and quarreling heart out of a sinful man and replaces it with a holy and undefiled heart. This is why we pray in Jesus’ Name. Because he is the one who makes our dirty hands clean.
God never leaves the room or stops up his ears when his people lift up their hands toward heaven in the name of His Son Jesus. Isaiah goes on to say:
Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.