[This sermon is one of a series entitled “Sermon on the Mount, Concentrating on the Beatitudes,” which is being preached on Sunday mornings by Pastor Tim Senter.]
I pray that as we have looked at the Lord’s Prayer together you have a fresh understanding of the undertaking of prayer with our Lord and God. I also pray it astonishes you that the Savior would advise us that we go to the Father in such confidence, boldly enough to make demands. This encouragement from the Savior should shed new light on Paul’s teachings in Ephesians 3:11-12. We are to look at our Savior and come to the Father boldly and confidently through faith in Christ. We also see some of what Paul teaches us in Galatians 5:24, in that we should destroy all the passions in our flesh such that we better belong to the Savior. In doing this, we become more spiritual in our life, in our attitude, in our behavior and toward our God. As we grow more spiritually minded and oriented to God, we develop a more perfect relationship with God. In developing this relationship, we are more capable of approaching God with the demands we find in the Lord’s Prayer. Every bit of our spiritual attitude and life is already connected to God (God already knows) therefore we should be willing to approach Him as He would be worshiped – in spirit and truth, recognizing He is God.
I pray we also see Hebrews 4:16 in a different light as we should confidently draw near to the throne of grace in order to receive mercy and find that grace when we need Him most. God’s grace is certainly a subject we will discuss with respect to the Lord’s Prayer. It is the central element of prayer for us. We will discuss this much more when we discuss verse 11 – “Give us this day our daily bread.” We are instructed, not just by Paul, but by our Lord (where Paul received his instruction) on how to pray, how to approach the Father, and how to approach Him with confidence.
Look at Matthew 6:9 please. We now begin a concentrated study on how these verses call upon us to keep our hearts in order to pray. In our first verse, we find once again that God is great, gracious and marvelous. We are to recognize these attributes. The God of our fathers is the God of our future. We must see God as He is, treat Him as He desires, and recognize the holiness of His name alone. Israel did as they replaced His name in the Old Testament with others in order to keep it sacred. We too should respect His perfect glory in our most intimate worship, prayer.
In the next few weeks we will look carefully at the Lord’s Prayer and attempt to discover together how to pray to God. We will be looking at what we should consider when we pray, how our attitude effects our prayers, what we should pray for and how we should pray for those things truly burdening our hearts. This will be an in-depth study. No, we should not expect everyone to spend as much time on each piece of His prayer as we will while studying it over the next weeks. However, we should learn enough from this study to give us a solid understanding of our Lord’s requirements and His expectations concerning our prayers. Then we should implement those things in our prayers on a personal level to worship God as He has instructed us to through His Son. We should, when we are finished have a new appreciation for prayer. Those are the things we should desire. Continue reading