Sunday, 26 July 2015
THE MODEL PRAYER
Matthew 6:5-13 NKJV
5 “And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
6 But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.
7 And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
9 In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors.
13 And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
LET US LOOK AT THIS SCENARIO
My dad does not joke with anything that has to do with schools and eduction. He tries everything possible to satisfy my academic need, even at that, I still have to tell him about my academic calendar (when a new session starts, the resumption dates and most importantly, when I need to pay my school fee).
Whenever I have to remind him of my school fee, I try as much as possible to humble myself and present it in my possible best way so that he will pity me and bring out his passbook or cheque or ask for my account number the next day and credit my account with my fee.
Sometimes he will tell me that "I know you are resuming school next week, I've not forgotten that you have to pay your school fee, but right now I cannot provide your fee, I will give you a letter to your school bursar to spare you till next month, I'm sure I will be able to pay in 2 weeks time though" and so on.
Matthew 7:9-11 NKJV
Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!
Here is the message, God already knows our wants/needs before we utter our prayers (Matthew 6:8). Why then do we need to shout to God if He already knows our need before we ask. I can imagine myself shouting to my earthly father every time I need my school fee; "daddy, you know my school will start a new session next week, you must provide my school fee, yes you must, I mustn't go to school next week without my school fee, that's why you must provide it, I am you son and you registered me in this school, how you want to do it, I don't know but you must provide it......blah blah blah". Now imagine yourself as my earthly father, how would you feel every time I make a request in such manners?
If we, being evil know how to humble ourselves before our earthly father to make our request and our earthly fathers, being evil knows how to give good gifts to their children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him in humility!
Jesus, Himself, the author and finisher of our faith gave us this model prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) and He knows this is Just enough for us to get whatever we want from our Heavenly Father.
In this manner, therefore, pray:
1. Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name = CALL ON THE NAME OF GOD IN PRAYER AND REVERENCE IT
2. Your kingdom come = THIS WILL DETERMINE THE LEVEL OF YOUR HOLINESS (ONLY RIGHTEOUS PEOPLE CAN LOOK FORWARD TO THE KINGDOM OF GOD. BECAUSE SINNERS CANNOT BE IN THE KINGDOM, THEY WON'T BOTHER IF THE KINGDOM COMES OR NOT)
3. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven = THIS MEANS TOTAL SUBMISSION TO GOD. THIS EXPLAINS YOUR HUMILITY
4. Give us this day our daily bread = THIS IS YOUR SUPPLICATIONS (YOUR NEED AND YOUR WANTS)
5. And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors = NOT THAT GOD'S FORGIVENESS IS DEPENDENT OR HOW WE FORGIVE, BUT WE SHOULD LEARN TO FREELY FORGIVE BECAUSE WE HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN FREELY
6. And do not lead us into temptation But deliver us from the evil one = YOUR DESIRE TO ALWAYS BE HOLY BEFORE GOD
7. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen = RECOGNITION OF GOD'S SUPREMACY
Be thou my guardian and my guide and hear me when I call,
Let not my slippery footsteps slide,
And hold me lest I fall.