6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: Part I of a Sermon Series on the Lord’s Prayer.

Matthew 6:9

Our father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.


- Start of a Sermon Series

- Lord’s Prayer, Our Father, Jesus

- Good to know, tradition, every word is so damn meaningful

- gives us words, when we don’t have any

- A spiritual Swiss Army Knife


- Plural, not a personal but congregational prayer

- By saying "our father" I put myself into the cloud of witnesses (Hebrews 12:1), the community of followers of Jesus, the communion of saints

- Our Gold Medals, our Redeem Team


- Images of God: Doctor, Mother Bear, Lover, King, Wife, Husband, Mother and Father

- God is as loving as parents are

- Those who pray have a loving relationship to God

- Abba means Daddy

- Images have a tendency towards ambivalence: failing dads, cheating dads, drinking dads, beating dads, absent dads

- describing our personal relationship to God


- Why this Shakespearean language?

- Evangelical Catechism (1929), Anglican Book of Common Prayer (1662/1928)

- Not KJV, not Mormon Pop

- Not that a prayer has to be started "Heavenly Father" and sound like 17th century, God understand "Yo, Dad!" as well

- Rooted in tradition, uniting us with sisters and brothers in the mainline protestant tradition like PCUSA and most evangelical churches.


- the greatness of God

- don’t be misled: God is not just Daddy but the Creator of heaven and earth

- Ruler over everything that is, not part of this creation, but in heaven, that is: on the other side

- Almighty

- Incredibly independent yet in his independence incredibly loving


- positive phrasing for "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain" but positively hallow it

- Not just it, but himself

- as with Baptism: Your name is yourself, God’s name is God himself

- When you meet someone new, you let them know your name and thus make yourself vulnerable.

- Jesus, the Rabbi

- Jewish Qaddish

- Evening Shma: "Our God in heaven, hallow thy name, and establish thy kingdom forever, and rule over us for ever and ever. Amen."

- Hollow means make holy, that means separate from the rest

- Cherish as someone very special, among humans we would say: love

- "You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy." (Leviticus 19:2) It’s not a one-way street

- God hollows us and we hollow him thus lifting ourselves up to heaven where we are part of the cloud of witnesses (Hebrews 12:1), the community of followers of Jesus, the communion of saints praying "Our father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name."

- Amen.

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