Teach us to pray. Part 2 6/14/15
Last week we talked about prayer. We discussed that Jesus modeled prayer and his followers were committed to it. We also learned that what most people know as the Lord’s prayer is truly a model prayer; a prayer given to his followers as a pattern or model. When you study every prayer in the NT, you’d discover that every prayer is different (the believers prayer Acts 4:22-30; Acts 7:59-60 Stephen’s prayer) Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians. Eph.3:14-21
We learned that prayer is not meant to be a show; prayer is something personal or relational. (between you and your heavenly Father). Prayer is not meant to be about meaningless repetitions. Jesus taught his followers to think about the eternal and not just the temporal when praying. (Don’t just focus on the here and now, but also on the future glory) Jesus had said in Matthew 6:9, This is how you should pray. Your kingdom come.
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Our last point last week was that when we pray we are to yearn for the coming kingdom. Jesus’ return to earth to establish his never-ending kingdom. It will be in that kingdom that God’s will will be completely done.
How is God’s will done in Heaven? It is carried out completely, consistently and constantly. It is done without complaint, without discussion and without hesitation. It is done with joy and excitement. This is the way we want God’s will to be accomplished in our midst today. We struggle doing his will consistently. During his earthly ministry, Jesus said that he came to do the will of the Father. You and I struggle doing the will of God on this earth, our sinful nature gets in the way. When we pray “your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” we are looking forward to the consummation of his kingdom where all God’s promises will be accomplished.
Give us today our daily bread.
Asking God for our daily provisions. This is what most people pray for. Give me, give me…..
If we already know God is our Father we should ask him for our daily provisions.
Forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors (forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us Luke 11:4)
We are asking God to forgive us the same way we forgive others. Forgive us as we forgive…..
Jesus had some strong words to say about forgiveness. (v.14-15)
If you don’t forgive others, God will not forgive you. (Forgive us as we forgive others. Lord treat me as I treat others…)
You can pray all you want but if you don’t forgive others, God will not hear your prayers. You are not authorized to seek him in prayer or worship. Mark 11:25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive your sins.
Things that hinder your prayer and even your worship to God.
Unforgiving attitude. God is very serious about our relationship with others.
Lack of reconciliation. Matt.5:23-24
Disharmony in family or with others I Pet.3:7
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
We are to ask our Father for deliverance from temptation (experiment, trial, test). Scripture tells us that God doesn’t tempt anyone (James 1:13) When tempted, no one should say, God is tempting me. For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone.
God doesn’t tempt you, but he allows the enemy to tempt you. God will allow trials to come to our lives as way of testing our faith. You and I will be tempted and tested (God will allow that to happen); however, God will not let you be tempted beyond your limits. 1 Cor.10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. (ESV)
When praying we should always keep in mind the war we are waging with our enemy. We are at war spiritually speaking.
Jesus had said to his disciples watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. Mt.26:41
When Jesus prayed to the Father, John 17:15 for protection for his disciples. “My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.”
Just like you ask your Father to give you your daily provisions; it’s ok to ask for deliverance from temptation and the power of the evil one.
God as our Father provides for our physical needs and also for our spiritual ones. We must rely on him for those provisions.
When you pray remember you are addressing your heavenly Father, the one who provides for our physical and spiritual needs. One day when God’s will is done on earth as it is in heaven, you won’t have to ask for daily provisions. When God’s will is done here as it is in heaven, then you won’t have to forgive anyone, for people would not do anything wrong or evil. When God’s will is done here as it is in heaven, you and I won’t have to deal with temptation, sin and the devil. They all be gone forever.
In the meantime, we are to continue to develop our relationship with God; we are to continue to come to him in prayer, but even prayer will, one day, be no longer needed. That is when you will know that His kingdom has come and his will is finally done.
Until that time, keep on watching, waiting and praying!