Summary: When you were a child, did you ever have a time when you were disrespecting your mom and she said, “Who do you think you’re talking to?” Well, in prayer we need to be reminded to Whom we are speaking.
We continue this morning in our study of the Sermon on the Mount.
We have noted that this sermon is CORRECTIVE in nature.
Jesus is intending to ensure that His Apostles know the errors which had cropped up within Jewish teaching.
Over the past few weeks, we have been examining Jesus’s corrective teaching on prayer.
He has noted that we are NOT to pray as a show unto others.
We are also forbidden from praying in vain repetition - in mindless chanting - as this is not the way God desires us to seek Him.
But Jesus does not just stop with the prohibitions, He also demonstrates what righteous prayer looks like.
He provides for us a model prayer.
This is often referred to as The Lord’s Prayer - but it really is not.
The Lord’s Prayer is found in John 17, wherein Jesus prays to God as an intercessor for His people.
This is the Lord’s MODEL Prayer.
It is not the prayer Jesus would pray, but rather it is the prayer that He has modeled for us to pray.
NOTE: We include this prayer as a part of our corporate worship because we believe one of the purposes of worship is instruction of the body, and by including this prayer we are including the opportunity for the congregation to learn this prayer and apply its principles.
It is not meant to be prayed mindless, in vain repetition - as that would violate Jesus’s own prohibition on prayer.
But it is meant to serve as a model for righteous prayer, and so we rehearse it weekly as both a reminder of its principles and an expression of fidelity to the teachings of Christ.
We are going to examine the model prayer over the coming weeks.
Today we are going to address the opening portion of the prayer, wherein Jesus demonstrates the proper way in which we should enter the presence of God.
And we are also going to see that even in the opening of this prayer, there is a mountain of spiritual significance.
READ: Matthew 6:9-10
When you were a child, did you ever have a time when you were disrespecting your mom and she said, “Who do you think you’re talking to?”
Maybe I am the only one...
But we have all heard this statement, and some of us have possibly used it ourselves.
It is REALITY CHECK for the person who is speaking disrespectfully.
It is a reminder that there is a line which exists - a line of respect - which dare not be crossed.
A person in a position of authority deserves to be addressed with words of respect.
Knowing this, we turn our attention to the way God is often addressed in our society.
We know that He is blasphemed in the media and by unbelievers, which is sad but not surprising.
But He is also addressed very disrespectfully by people who call themselves Christians.
Just listen to people pray....
They are irreverent...
They are impious...
They are demanding...
They are disrespectful...
The Word-Faith movement has spawned an entire generation whose prayers seem more like the whinings of spoiled children than the petitions of devout saints.
Now, to be clear I am not saying that our prayers must be perfect.
What I am saying is that many people in the modern “church” have no idea to Whom they are speaking, and thus they enter into their prayers without a sense of reverence.
QUOTE: John MacArthur “This is an utterly irreverent age.”
He went on to site a survey which said that the majority of people today have never been to a formal event.
As a result, people take a cavalier and casual approach to everything.
They refuse to take anything seriously.
And that includes the presence of God.
Jesus is NOT your homeboy.
Our prayers should never begin with “Hey big guy in the sky, what’s up?”
We are speaking to the God Who created this universe... who created us from dust... who spoke the world into existence.
And we are to enter in His presence with a sense of awe and wonder.
It is no small thing that we are even able to go into His presence in prayer.
Jesus bought us that ability on Calvary's cross.
We are able to enter His throne room “boldly” Scripture says, but never “disrespectfully”.
With that in mind, let us consider the two addresses which Jesus gives us as the model for how we are to enter God’s presence.
Jesus tells us that when we enter the presence of God in prayer, we need to consider two sublime truths...
1. The Fatherhood of God
2. The Holiness of God
The Fatherhood of God
v.9b “Our Father in Heaven”
One of the most precious blessings which is given to the believer is the ability to identify the Creator of the universe as his father.