James 5:13–20 (ESV)
The Prayer of Faith
anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil
in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore,
confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed
fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. 18 Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.
19 My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, 20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering
will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
Often when visiting someone in the hospital, I will read this passage to them. They
often ask why Lutherans do not anoint the sick? Instead of saying we do… I ask them that “If I have anointing oil, would they really let me anoint them? If they say yes… I tell them that I have anointing oil with me, so I anoint
them. It is a practice that was dying off but has been making a comeback because of the Pastor’s Companion which has a page in the liturgy for anointing the sick. It’s not up to me as to what happens, that belongs to God.
I pray: O Lord, help me to trust you and your Word. Amen.