Summary: Starting the Lord’s prayer
From Jack Peters Sermon web site
Part #1 of 8 - The Lord’s Prayer
This passage is called The Lord’s Prayer.
It is called The Lord’s Prayer, because the Lord gave it. However it is not a prayer that Jesus had to pray, but a prayer that Jesus’ disciples should use as a model for their own prayers. The value of the Lord’s Prayer is not found in the repetition of prayer in church services, but in using it as a model. The Lord’s Prayer is a skeleton, when we pray, saying each phrase, we put "meat" on that skeleton to produce a prayer that is pleasing to God.
We begin by thinking of our approach to God in Prayer. It is so easy to rush into his presence, forgetting to whom we are speaking. When we approach God in prayer, we need to pause and to focus on just whom we are conversing with. When we come to Him and say, "Our Father which art in Heaven," we are reminding ourselves of three things:
PRAYER IS PERSONAL
The words "Our Father" are personal words. They imply a personal relationship with God. Oh you might ask "Isn’t God everyone’s Father?" In the sense of God being creator, yes he is. Mal. 2:10 says, Have we not all one father? has not one God created us?
But there is another sense in which God is not the Father of all.
When Adam and Eve disobeyed God by eating the wrong fruit, there was a separation that took place between man and God.
God is righteous and just. Somebody had to pay for our sins. The logical choice would be ourselves. We deserve to be punished.
However, God in his love sent His Son to die in our place!
When a person realizes that he is a sinner without hope and turns in faith to Jesus Christ as the one who died for his sins, many wonderful things happen. Let me mention two of these things:
First, we are no longer at war with God because of sin.
Second, he or she becomes a child of God. As a child of God, you have just as much right to come and talk to your Heavenly Father, as you do your earthly father. The only difference is, your Heavenly Father is a better listener and more available!
When we come to our Heavenly Father, we must realize that we only have access into God’s presence because of what the Lord Jesus has done for us. Therefore, we are to pray in Jesus’ name.
When I come to God in prayer, calling him "Father", I am on speaking terms with the God of the Universe As you begin your prayers, approach God in Jesus’ name as your loving, Heavenly Father. You are coming to someone who cares. You are coming to someone who wants to listen. You are coming to someone who knows you and understands you better than anyone else in this whole world!
PRAYER IS PRACTICAL
When you pray, you pray to "Our Father". He is not just your Father, but the Father of all those who know the Lord Jesus as Savior.
You are coming to pray with and for others!
You are not the only one at the throne of grace!
And although you are there to talk to God about your own needs, you are also there to talk to God for the needs of others as well.
The whole Lord’s Prayer is in the plural, therefore you are also praying for others!
But more important than praying for others, you are praying for the glory of God! You are not to come to God to get Him to do your bidding. God is not a genie in a bottle. You are coming to God to accomplish His program.
That’s why the words, "Hallowed be your name," "Your Kingdom Come," "Your Will Be Done," and "Yours is the kingdom."
Think of being contracted to build a house. The man who is purchasing this house simply says to you, "When you need something, ask. I’ll provide it."
You need a bulldozer and other equipment to get the ground ready and to dig a hole for the basement. You ask, and the equipment and operators show up.
You need cement for footers for a foundation. So you ask. The cement truck arrives.
You need lumber, you ask, and it arrives. You need carpenters, electricians, plumbers, and ask for them. They arrive. And so it goes through the whole building process. When something was needed, the man building the house was asked, and whatever was needed in materials or laborers was provided.
Why was the man so cooperative? You were building his house! He’ll have the glory of living there and enjoying the finished product.