Our Model Prayer

Orate = Our Model Prayer

Orate = Pray in Latin (Pray without ceasing)

ōrāte

PART TWO OF SIX

We asked, “Lord, teach us to pray.” And He answered, “When you pray, say:

Our Father in heaven,

Hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come.

Your will be done.

On earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our sins,

For we ourselves forgive everyone who is indebted to us.

And lead us not into temptation,

But deliver us from evil” (Luke 11:2-4).

This is no magic formula for prayer, but as Jesus taught us the model way to pray, we must take serious note. We must pay attention to the content of the Lord’s Prayer, the special “ingredients,” and align our hearts with it. We can look at the address and the six petitions that follow for guidance.

THE ADDRESS: We are to pray to our Father in heaven as Jesus did. Note that we are also instructed to pray in the name of Jesus (John 14:13-14) and to lean on the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:26, 27). We are to address our prayers to the omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, all-loving, One True God.

PETITION #1: “Hallowed be your name.” This begins the prayer with adoration, recognizing that the name of God is holy. This ties in with having a healthy fear of God, and we should acknowledge it verbally. If we look back at my favorite definition of fear of the Lord, “a reverential awe for His power and glory and proper respect for His wrath and anger,” (https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/cotidie.blog/174) it fits in with the word hallowed, which means holy, or greatly revered.

PETITION #2: “Your kingdom come.” Jesus announced that the Kingdom of God was at hand, and we should long for and eagerly await His Kingdom. As I wrote previously, The Kingdom of God can also be thought of as the “reign of God.” The reign of God began to take place in the life and ministry of Jesus, but was not fully manifested then and will not until Jesus returns (https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/cotidie.blog/237). We see an “already-not yet” tension here, as theologian R.T. France calls it. The coming of the Kingdom began when Jesus was here on earth, and will be fulfilled when He returns. We must keep a Kingdom mindset at all times, fighting the worldly thoughts and deeds that come natural to us.

PETITION #3: “Your will be done. On earth as it is in heaven.” David Guzik says, “Jesus wanted us to pray with the desire that the will of God would be done on earth as it is in heaven. In heaven there is no disobedience and there are no obstacles to God’s will; on earth there is disobedience and there are at least apparent obstacles to His will. The citizens of Jesus’ kingdom will want to see His will done as freely on earth as it is in heaven.” Charles Spurgeon said, “He that taught us this prayer used it himself in the most unrestricted sense. When the bloody sweat stood on his face, and all the fear and trembling of a man in anguish were upon him, he did not dispute the decree of the Father, but bowed his head and cried. ‘Nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.’” Jesus will show us what the full extent of this portion of the model prayer means as He prepares to face the cross.

PETITION #4: “Give us this day our daily bread.” He is the supplier of everything we need and we are not to worry for His provision for our daily necessities. Not our wants, but our needs, according to His will and His purpose for us. This also reminds us the power of focusing on today, cotidie, not looking back or looking ahead.

PETITION #5: “And forgive us our sins, For we ourselves forgive everyone who is indebted to us.” As we have been forgiven by the blood of Christ, we are to quickly forgive as well. This is a reminder that we are all equals in this regard.

PETITION #6: “And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil.” We must remember our weakness in the flesh, but also remember when we are weak, then we are strong. We must ever require the grace and strength of Jesus to make it through each day.

Father, I adore you. Help me to keep a Kingdom mindset as I await your return. Not my will be done, but your will. Give me what I need for today. Help me to forgive and see everyone as equals; sinners who need Jesus. I need your help today and every day.

I constructed my own prayer, based on the model prayer above, to show that the model prayer is that, a model. God does not want repetition of the same prayer over and over. He wants relationship. He wants our heart to be aligned with this prayer. He wants our adoration. He wants us to be not of this world. He wants us to seek His perfect will. He wants us to rely on His provision. He wants us to easily forgive. And He wants us to require the strength only He can give, each and every day.

Just for today, meditate on the model prayer and sincerely pray it when you are ready.

Tune in tomorrow for Part Three…

France, R.T. The Gospel of Matthew. Eerdmans, 2007.

Guzik, David. enduringword.com

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