The Lord’s Prayer: The one thing the disciples asked Jesus to teach them
August 15, 2021
The Lord’s Prayer
The one thing the disciples asked Jesus to teach them
Everything we need to know about prayer was given in the Bible. Even the very template and instructions on how to pray are written in the pages of scripture. As long as it is called today, we will always be in need of something. We will always have decisions to make, and decisions will always require wisdom. We will always need guidance from God. Prayer is spiritual communication between God and man. It is not something where we get to do all the talking to God; it involves learning to listen to Him as well.
Today, I am going to share with you the template of prayer used by Jesus. In fact, He illustrated in Luke 11:1-14 the “HOW” modeling the way we should pray. This is what Christians refer to as “The Lord’s Prayer.”
When I was a little girl, one of the first tv shows I ever watched on tv, black and white, was Perry Mason. I loved watching him as a lawyer. I wanted to be just like this lawyer, who won all the cases. And he won all the cases that were brought before the judge because he had all the right evidence that lined up with the law. I want to bring what happens in a courtroom into the realm of what happens in the spirit when we approach God in prayer.
Perry bringing his case before the judge is like us bringing our prayers before The Judge of a heavenly kingdom. A kingdom is ruled by a king. When we look at our nation, in olden times, we may have called it the Kingdom of America. What do we call it now? “The Nation of America”. If a kingdom is governed by a king, whom or what is a nation governed by? The nation of America is composed of a group of elected officials that we call the government. So we are governed as a nation by our government.
God’s whole plan for mankind is to have a relationship with us. To be a Father to man. For us to be His sons and daughters. Parents are able to lead children, see any danger ahead of them, and advise children of a better plan. How many adults today would honestly admit that they wished they had listened to the advice of dad and mom? If they had done so, things that brought heartache and misery may have worked out better. God is the ultimate Father. He is the only one who sees the end from the beginning. He knows everything, He’s God!
He made everything for man to enjoy and for man to rule or to govern over. We all should know the story of creation. The first three chapters of Genesis cover the story well. However, in order for man to govern well, he had to understand that there was One who governed over him. One who he would learn from and glean from.
For Adam, this should have been God. He obtained guidance from God. The first failed test in the Bible is Adam and Eve failing the test of submission to God’s council. They ignored the legal advice that God gave them. They broke the law and paid a severe price. They failed the test of government, failed the test of being governed. Choosing to obey satan rather than God, their creator. Government is the overriding issue in the Bible. It all boils down to who will rule our lives, God or Satan?
It’s obvious that I am no attorney. It was only recently that my view of life came to me in this picture. As Christ-followers, as believers, our entire lives on this earth are being lived out in a courtroom. We will always be in a battle against the forces of evil, and we will always be on trial presenting our rights before heaven, demanding justice and God’s plan to prevail on our behalf. We will have to do this, until God once and for all establishes His rule upon this earth.
Isaiah 9:7 (NLT) His government and its peace will never end. He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David for all eternity. The passionate commitment of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen!
One of the amazing promises in the Bible is that we get to be a part of this rulership.
Daniel 7:27 (HCSB)
The kingdom, dominion, and greatness of the kingdoms under all of heaven will be given to the people, the holy ones of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will serve and obey Him.’
There is a direct correlation between prayer and submission to God’s government, to His kingdom. Prayer is submission to His ways of doing things – and calling upon our rights as His children, presenting our petitions before Him. These rights can never be known to us without a revelation of who He is and what He has promised. This can never be understood without the Word of God.
Everything that the Word is, Christ is, God is, and every promise written in it belong to those who know what those promises are. But we must first accept that His ways are supreme and submit to His governance of our lives.
Israel rejected God’s rule over their lives. They wanted a king like the other nations. They wanted a mediator. In fact the first rejection in scripture was when they were in the desert. They had direct access to the Lord. Exodus 20:18-19 (HCSB) 18 All the people witnessed[a] the thunder and lightning, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain surrounded by smoke. When the people saw it[b] they trembled and stood at a distance. 19 “You speak to us, and we will listen,” they said to Moses, “but don’t let God speak to us, or we will die.”
The people chose to have secondhand information from God. They rejected drawing near to Him.
Again, in I Sam 8, the people wanted an earthly king, an earthly government. They were rejecting God’s rule. All of this ended up with their failure to receive the promises of God. Judgment ensues when we pursue self-governance. People who break the law are governed by their own desires. When this happens, there will be consequences. Many times self-governed people end up before a judge having to present a case.
As believers we are like attorneys, in that we are petitioning God. We are pleading our case before Him. Any good attorney will always know what their clients’ rights are within the bounds of the law. The Bible teaches us in Phil 4:6-7 (MSG): Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.
As believers, we are also known as disciples, if we take our cues from the disciples in the Bible who walked with Jesus. We see that they only asked Jesus this one request , Luke 11:1 “Lord, teach us how to pray..” Of all the things, they didn’t ask Him to teach them to do miracles or to raise the dead. They asked Him to teach them to pray! So I do believe it’s important as a disciple to evaluate Jesus’ instructions.
There are 9 things that Jesus laid out for us in Matthew 6:5-15, the model of praying/petitioning God.
1. Our Father
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
1 John 3:1-3 See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is. And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.
Jesus shows us that we are God’s children. He calls God “The Father” over 175 times in scripture. He wants us to know that we too can approach the Father just as He does. We have been born again and now relate to The Father the way Adam and Eve were intended to relate.
The Word prayer in Matthew 6:9 is the word proseuchomai in Greek (Strongs G4336). Pros is a face to face contact. It’s the same as in 1 John 1:1 in the beginning..the Word was face to face with God: Jesus and the Father in an intimate relationship. So close there is breath on the face. This is the first part of the word for prayer. It demands a personal encounter with someone. Euchomai – to bring a wish, desire, a longing before a god. In this sense, we are bringing our wishes and desires, coming face to face, intimately with “Our Father.”
2. Which Art in Heaven
We are citizens of heaven. We live by the standards of heaven. This is the place where Our Father lives. Jesus references 23 times in the gospels “Father which is in heaven.”
As God’s children we must recognize that if our Father is in heaven and this is His dwelling place, we too are citizens of heaven.
Philippians 3:20 (AMPC)
20 But we are citizens of the state (commonwealth, homeland) which is in heaven, and from it also we [a]earnestly and patiently await [the coming of] the Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) [as] Savior,
3. Hallowed Be Thy Name
Adoration and worship belong to The Father. This act of worship should come before we petition God. Going before an earthly judge, attorneys humble themselves and say “your honor.” In this same sense, we are giving God The Father the honor that is due to His name.
Why is praising Him necessary?
- He deserves to be praised, and He is worthy to receive our praise.
Psalm 96:4 (TPT) For the Lord’s greatness is beyond description, and he deserves all the praise that comes to him. He is our King-God, and it’s right to be in holy awe of him.
Psalm 145:3 (MSG) God is magnificent; he can never be praised enough. There are no boundaries to his greatness.
2 Sam 22:4 (AMPC) I call on the Lord, Who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.
Rev 4:11 (AMPC) Worthy are You, our Lord and God, to receive the glory and the honor and dominion, for You created all things; by Your will they were [brought into being] and were created.
- Praising God reminds us of His greatness.
- Our faith is stirred up when we praise God, and the atmosphere around us changes. He comes into the room with us.
2 Chron 5:13-14 (AMPC) And when the trumpeters and singers were joined in unison, making one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord, and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and other instruments for song and praised the Lord, saying, For He is good, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever, then the house of the Lord was filled with a cloud, 14 So that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God.
Psalm 22:3 (AMPC) But You are holy, O You Who dwell in [the holy place where] the praises of Israel [are offered].
4. Thy Kingdom Come
When we declare this, we are saying that His Kingdom is the solution to the issues of this world. We are calling on the government of heaven to rule here on this earth.
If we look at our nation, we have already established that we are a people governed by a government that we have chosen. We discussed that the Israelites rejected God and wanted a king patterned after their own desires. When nations like ours elect officials after our own desires, it tells where the people of a nation are at morally. In other words, elected officials who are bent on evil ways in opposition to God’s are placed there because the people desire what is evil. And God, just like He did when the Israelites wanted a king, gave them Saul, because they wanted a king that looked good.
If we as God’s people would exercise this right, declaring in prayer, “Thy Kingdom come” we will see it come. But this must be a sincere desire in our hearts when we pray for it. And we must be living like His kingdom ways are on the inside of us.
5. Thy Will Be Done on Earth, As It Is In Heaven.
What is His will towards us? This is found in the Word of God. God’s will for us is so full of hope and goodness.
Here are just a few things that Jesus shows us. After all, Jesus is our advocate and our mediator before the Father. He is our attorney representative, our legal counsel. And it is He who told us to pray and petition the Father this way.
- His will to save the lost. Jesus came to seek and save those who are lost. Luke 19:9-10 (Message). So when we pray for His will to be done here on earth, and we are praying for a lost loved one, we are praying His perfect will. He wants to save those that are lost.
John 3:16-18 (MSG) “This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.
- His will eliminates the fear of death. Jesus gives us the hope that we will live like He lives.
John 14:19 (AMPC) Just a little while now, and the world will not see Me any more, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also.
- His will is to give us hope, heal us, help us, set us free from anything that oppresses us and to bless us and favor us.
Luke 4:18-19 (HCSB) The Spirit of the Lord is on Me, because He has anointed Me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent Me[a] to proclaim freedom[b] to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free the oppressed, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.
The bottom line is that when I pray this way, I am declaring what is rightfully mine and what rightfully belongs to me. I am only asking the Father for what has already been planned out for my life. Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you”—this is the Lord’s declaration—“plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
Lord, let Your will in my life be established on this earth for my life, for my family, for my friends, for my church family, let Your good plans come to fruition Father. It is not Your desire to see my children lost and going to hell. Send Your salvation to them Father. This is what this gives us access to!
6. Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread.
At this point in this model of praying, I should have now convinced my heart that He is worthy, that He is good, that His ways are sovereign. I should know that He wants to help me and wants to love me. My heart should now be in a place of security and simply in awe of our Father. I believe Jesus was like this. Just in awe of the Father. Have you ever known people who only come to you for what they need? May it be said of us that we are those who seek the face of God and not His hands only.
Saying to God to give us this day our daily bread, is asking God to give me what I need for today. If God supplied everything I needed for months at a time, how often do you really think we would speak to Him and seek Him? And a key word here is the word “us.” I am simply not praying for my own needs; I am including the needs of others.
7. And Forgive Us Our Debts As We Forgive Our debtors.
We must confess our sins.
1 John 1:9 (AMPC) 9 If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action].
We forgive others as many times as it takes. CS Lewis: “Everyone thinks forgiveness is a wonderful idea, until we have someone to forgive.”
Matthew 11:25 (AMPC) And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him and [a]let it drop (leave it, let it go), in order that your Father Who is in heaven may also forgive you your [own] failings and shortcomings and let them drop.
Matthew 18:21-22 (MSG) At that point Peter got up the nerve to ask, “Master, how many times do I forgive a brother or sister who hurts me? Seven?” 22 Jesus replied, “Seven! Hardly. Try seventy times seven.
Go one step further, if you know someone is upset with you. Remember, we are operating under a heavenly kingdom. We did something wrong to God, we sinned against God, He didn’t sin against us. Who came to whom? God came to us, He models for us, what we should aim to be. Go a step further and do what Matthew 5:23-24 (AMPC) teaches us: So if when you are offering your gift at the altar you there remember that your brother has any [grievance] against you, 24 Leave your gift at the altar and go. First make peace with your brother, and then come back and present your gift.
8. Lead Us Not Into Temptation, But Deliver Us From Evil.
James 1:13 (APMC) Let no one say when he is tempted, I am tempted from God; for God is incapable of being tempted by [what is] evil and He Himself tempts no one.
Matthew 26:41 (AMPC) All of you must keep awake (give strict attention, be cautious and active) and watch and pray, that you may not come into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
1 Corinthians 10:13 (TPT) 13 We all experience[a] times of testing,[b] which is normal for every human being. But God will be faithful to you. He will screen and filter the severity, nature, and timing of every test or trial you face[c] so that you can bear it. And each test is an opportunity to trust him more, for along with every trial God has provided for you a way of escape[d] that will bring you out of it victoriously.[e]
John 17:15 (AMPC) 15 I do not ask that You will take them out of the world, but that You will keep and protect them from the evil one.
Jesus is praying for us. We must know this! He is pleading and has pleaded our case. He desires that we remain pure and holy. It is possible to live a life of holiness, a life that is set apart for the Father. Jesus paved the way for us to be able to do this. Prayer can help us to be led in all wisdom. Wisdom gives us the ability to refrain from evil. Proverbs 1:33 (AMPC) But whoso hearkens to me [Wisdom] shall dwell securely and in confident trust and shall be quiet, without fear or dread of evil.
9. For Yours Is The Kingdom and The Power and The Glory Forever.
Everything starts with His kingdom and ends with His kingdom. I stated what the scriptures stated earlier on in this message: “Of His kingdom and government there will be no end.” The perfect plan of God for all of us is to be under His care. Father knows best! It is to reconcile us to where Adam left fellowship with God. This requires us to submit to His plan and His ways. Submit to His government rather than seek out our own desires.
This is the model of prayer that Jesus taught us in the gospels. There are and will always remain many things to pray about. Praying with a mindset that God is our Father will make me see myself as a child that He deeply loves and cares about and who is dependent upon Him and not myself. Giving honor to His name reminds us of who He is. It places the attention on Him and His grandness, His majesty, versus our human frailties and our limitations. Praying like this causes us to yearn for His perfect plans to come into our lives and the lives of others. We begin to desire His best plans. This model teaches us that all that we have comes from the Father, and that He is the only One that is the source of all provision in our lives. It helps us to be ever mindful that mercy triumphs over judgment, and that we must show others His love. “By this all men will know that we are His disciples, that we have love for one another.” We will walk in greater grace and forgiveness with others.
Praying like this can become an effective tool of prayer that equips us to rightfully approach the Father and ask for what He has already made available to us.
- Recognize that God is the only One deserving of all praise. Fill your heart with words that describe His character and meditate and think on it.
- Know the promises spoken through the Word for your life. Learn to pray the scriptures over your situations, acknowledging that God has promised to provide all things necessary for your life.
- Forgive others freely and liberally.
- Know that temptations will come, but the Lord will see you through them all. He has promised to.
- Remember that God is God, His plans will always be accomplished in this world. It’s up to us whether or not we get to rule alongside Him.