Summary: Jesus teaches us how to pray
PRAY LIKE THIS!
Mt 6:9a “Pray, then, in this way:
In vs 5-8, Jesus told us “how not to pray.”
* Wrong to call it “the Lord’s prayer”- Jesus never prayed it. Couldn’t.
* He did not say “pray this”. He already said to not “recite prayers”. Here He is saying that we are to “pray LIKE this.”
* More accurately called “a model prayer”.
CHARACTERISTICS OF A MODEL PRAYER
1. WHO WE ARE TO PRAY TO.
Mt 6:9b ‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.
A. We are to pray to God alone. Nowhere in the Bible are we instructed to pray to anyone but God, in fact we are forbidden to.
It is not Biblical to pray to Mary, the apostles, or other dead saints.
It is not Biblical to pray to stars, angels, or any created thing or being.
* Nor is it proper to pray to any of these as a mediator.
1 Tim 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus
B. Why we are to pray to Him.
Because He is the God of Heaven!
* He is not bound to Earth.
* He is higher than us in every way...... HE IS HOLY!
* He is above all things. He is above everything that we face. Circumstances do not control Him, He controls circumstances!
C. How do we approach Him?
“Hallowed be Your Name”
We must approach Him with reverence.
* He is not “the Big Man upstairs”. (taking God’s Name in vain)
* Jesus is not “your homey”.
** He is the Lord and should be referred to with respect and reverence.
We need to remember Who is God and Who is not!!
2. WHAT WE ARE TO PRAY FOR.
A. Kingdom Needs.
Mt 6:10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.
The primary focus of our prayers ought to be Kingdom related. To focus primarily on our own needs is self-centered, not Christ-centered.
* What is involved in praying for His kingdom to come?
(1) We make Jesus famous. (Chinese Christian once told us that it was his goal to make Jesus famous in all of China and the world). Our goal ought to be to extend the influence of His kingdom worldwide.
(2) Lead People to Salvation. New believers are added to the Kingdom and it grows.
(3) To Transform society. As we lead people to Christ our society ought to improve as we are transformed into the image of Christ.
B. Physical Needs.
Mt 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread
Bread is not “just food” but symbolic of all our physical needs.
We should invite God into all aspects of our lives. He is our Father and desires to greatly bless us. When we come to realize that all good things truly are from Him, we will come to Him for our needs.
* job, home, safety, joy, peace, etc.
C. Spiritual Needs.
Mt 6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
We have many spiritual needs. Jesus mentions forgiveness as our major need.
We cannot come to know God unless we repent and believe in Jesus. We cannot maintain fellowship with God unless we live in a continual state of repentance. Sin hinders our fellowship.
Jesus illustrated this at the Last Supper. He spoke of “having already bathed” referring to salvation/baptism, but told the disciples that they needed their feet washed regularly to maintain fellowship with Him.