This is part of our No Longer Sola Series.
I used to say and believe that there is nothing in the Bible about asking the saints in heaven to pray for us. I've realized that was the case because I read the Bible with the glasses given to me by the Lutheran Church. The problem with those spectacles is they weren't strong enough to see everything on the page clearly.
Today's resource shows how the Bible says an awful lot on the intercessions of the saints. The difference is that the Reformation represents a break, a new way of reading the Bible, rather than the return that Luther and the Reformers sought something new emerged in the 16th century.
Most Lutherans and Protestants today do not read the Bible in a way that they can see the ever Virginity of Mary. Why? Christians today do not read the Bible the same way their forefathers in the faith did because they received Reformation tradition and the principles unleashed by Luther.
Another example would be infant Baptism. Look at how Luther justifies Infant Baptism in the Large Catechism, which is a binding document for Lutherans. Notice there is no appeal to scripture but rather an appeal to the life and experience of the Church (Tradition) as the best and strongest proof for the "simple-minded and unlearned".
"That the Baptism of infants is pleasing to Christ is sufficiently proved from His own work, namely, that God sanctifies many of them who have been thus baptized, and has given them the Holy Ghost; and that there are yet many even to-day in whom we perceive that they have the Holy Ghost both because of their doctrine and life; as it is also given to us by the grace of God that we can explain the Scriptures and come to the knowledge of Christ, which is impossible without the Holy Ghost.
50] But if God did not accept the baptism of infants, He would not give the Holy Ghost nor any of His gifts to any of them; in short, during this long time unto this day no man upon earth could have been a Christian. Now, since God confirms Baptism by the gifts of His Holy Ghost, as is plainly perceptible in some of the church fathers, as St. Bernard, Gerson, John Hus, and others, who were baptized in infancy, and since the holy Christian Church cannot perish until the end of the world, they must acknowledge that such infant baptism is pleasing to God. For He can never be opposed to Himself, or support falsehood and wickedness, or for its promotion impart His grace and Spirit. 51] This is indeed the best and strongest proof for the simple-minded and unlearned. For they shall not take from us or overthrow this article: I believe a holy Christian Church, the communion of saints."
The New Testament nowhere explicitly calls for babies to be baptized any more than it explicitly calls us to ask the saints to pray for us. Both practices are correct, however, for both are derived from clear teaching in Scripture regarding the promises attached to Baptism and prayer.
For an extremely thorough treatment on what Scripture has to say about prayer to the saints this article is very good. It addresses all of the following topics:
1. The difference between the mediation of the Lord Jesus Christ and the intercession of the saints
2. How the intercession of the saints is merely praying for us
3. How God requests people to ask the intercession of the righteous
4. Whether angels and saints know our condition on earth
5. The greatness, knowledge and ministry of the saints
6. How the saints who have departed are still living
8. Examples of the intercession of the angels
9. The saints’ favor with the Lord
10. Common objections and replies
11. The spirituality of asking the prayers of the saints
12. How intercession is a living reality
I highly recommend that anyone read this resource who has any questions or concerns about the Biblical or Christian nature of intercession to the saints.