The Lord’s Prayer: What it Teaches us about Prayer

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It brings to us the way we ought to regard God when we pray.  Thus when we pray “Our Father” we understand that we ought to regard Him as our father.  Likewise, when we pray “Hallowed be Thy name” we see Him as holy.  When we pray “Your kingdom come” we see Him as a king, our king.  When we pray “Thy will be done” we see Him as our master and teacher.  When we pray for daily bread we see Him as our provider.  When we pray for forgiveness we see Him as our savior.  And when we pray for leading and guidance we see Him as our shepherd and protector, the one who goes before us.

It shows us the spirit of true prayer.  At each junction in the prayer Jesus conveys to us what the spirit of…

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The Lord’s Prayer: Its Form

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The prayer is arranged in three main parts: the address—“Our Father who is in heaven,” six petitions, and the doxology. We will focus, in this blog, on the six petitions.

The Six Petitions

As for the six petitions, the first three are directed toward God and His purposes, and the second three are directed toward man and his needs.

The first three petitions are:

1 That the name of God will be revered—“Hallowed be Your name,”

2 That the role of God would be established—“Your kingdom come,” and

3 That the will of God be done—“Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

Notice how each of these petitions is dependent on and related to each other. The hallowing of His name is dependent on the coming of His kingdom, and the coming of His kingdom requires the doing of His will.  Each is a separate…

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The Lord’s Prayer: Its Two Settings

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The study of prayer would not be complete without examining the Lord’s Prayer. It is no doubt the most comprehensive piece of work on prayer ever composed.  Here in this very short prayer Jesus has woven every possible principle of prayer together and has given it to us to show us how to pray.  It is the best and simplest prayer tool we could possibly have.  John MacArthur, in his book, Jesus’ Pattern of Prayer, said, “It [The Lord’s Prayer] is an absolute masterpiece of God’s infinite wisdom to somehow encompass every conceivable element in prayer and reduce it to one simple pattern.”1

In this first blog on the Lord’s Prayer, as an introduction, I want to talk about its settings. In upcoming blogs we will talk about its sources, its form, and generally what it teaches us about prayer.

The Two Settings of the Prayer 


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And Lead Us Not Into Temptation, But Deliver Us From Evil

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We have been looking at the Lord’s Prayer and we have been trying to practice praying as our Lord outlined for us. We have come to the part where it says, “And lead us not into temptation…

So, after we have prayed for daily bread and forgiveness, we are made clean and strong, ready for duty and for battle.  But before we go out into the world we must pray that God would lead us and protect us.

The petition here for leading is really a plea for mercy—that God would not lead us into situations where it would be too difficult for us to bear under trials, so that we would give into sin.  The second part, that He “deliver us from evil,” is the answer to the first part.  That is, if He does not lead us into temptation, what He does is the opposite—He delivers us out of…

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And Forgive Us Our Debts, As We Forgive Our Debtors

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 Here is the petition that is the most needed to maintain our relationship with God.  It is the petition that helps to keep our mind and soul pure so that we can commune with Him in prayer.  Hence this petition for daily forgiveness makes it possible to be satisfied with our daily bread, and also makes it probable that He will guide us and deliver us from evil when we ask Him.

The forgiveness that we ask for is according to our debts to God.  For God has given us His laws and we have not obeyed them, we have not been righteous as He requires.  Thus, because of our sin against God, we owe Him a huge debt of consequence.  How can we pay this debt?  It is so immense, so gigantic that we will never be able to pay it back.  Therefore, all we can do is…

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5 Possible Meanings of “Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread”

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 This is an excerpt from my book Purpose of Prayer.

Here is the first of three petitions that describe our own personal needs.  The first three petitions are for God’s desires.  The next three are for our needs.  And we must always remember to pray for His requirements first; then He will show us what our real needs are, and He will lead us to pray for those things.  Moreover, when we concentrate on His priorities first, He gives us a true and right perspective on things; hence, He shows us what our priorities should be, and He puts us in a better mind to pray for ourselves and for our friends. 

This first of these personal petitions is for our daily bread, and is normally thought of as a petition for all our daily, physical needs—for our food and shelter, etc.  For the most part, I think this…

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Your Will Be Done On Earth As It Is In Heaven

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An excerpt from my book Purpose of Prayer .

As we pray for God’s name to be hallowed, and for His kingdom to come, with the same breath we should pray also for His will to be done.  For the holiness of God and the kingdom of God is established by the will of God.

Here we are praying that God would do His good will to overcome what is sinful and evil in the world, that He would do whatever He wishes to do, so that the earth would be as heaven.  And since He wishes that all would be saved, and thus be conformed to His image, this prayer is really a prayer for the salvation and sanctification of all those in the world.

Now, since God has given all men and women a choice, we know that many will choose not to be saved and to go…

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How to Hallow God’s Name — from Matthew 6:9-13

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First of all we should discuss why we should hallow His name?  There are several reasons to hallow His name.  Two reasons stand out to me.  First, the most obvious reason is because He deserves it.  He is God and He is holy; therefore we ought to treat Him as holy.  He is the one that is high and lifted up.  Hence we ought to cry out daily (in our mind or even verbally) as the angels do, saying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory” (Is. 6:1-3).

A second reason to treat God as holy is so that others around us will treat Him as holy, and likewise, believe and obey Him.  For when we show God (or anyone) respect, others who observe us will tend to follow our example (Heb. 13:7).  But when we disrespect God…

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Hallowed Be Your Name – What It Means To Hallow God’s Name

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cropped-copy-of-northern-lights1.jpg This first petition in the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) is designed to bring us further into the presence of God, but with the aim that God would be glorified.  Hence, when we pray “Hallowed be Your name,” we are in fact praying as such: “Lord, let Your name be hallowed in me so that I will experience who You are and give You praise; and let Your name be hallowed in my friends so that they also can know You and praise You.”  Therefore, though we are asking God to show Himself to us in all His glory, and though we are seeking to ascend further into the heavenlies to experience the awesomeness of God, the aim is not to get our personal needs met, rather it is that God would be lifted up and glorified.  Hence, in this first petition, Jesus is teaching us that we should start our…

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4 Things that the Lord’s Prayer Address, Our Father in Heaven, Tells Us about Prayer

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An excerpt from my book Purpose of Prayer.

The proper way to start any prayer is with an address.  I suppose there are several ways to address God when we pray, but the address in the Lord’s Prayer is the best way—since Jesus gives it to us.  Here are…

Four Things that the Lord’s Prayer Address, Our Father in Heaven, Tells Us about Prayer — Matthew 6:9-13


1.  That prayer is only for Christians.  The words “Our Father” indicate that this prayer and all true prayer is only for those who can truly call God Father. In a general or physical sense, all people can call Him father, because all people were created by Him (Mal. 2:10).  But here, “Father” is used in a spiritual sense (Gal. 4:5-6).  Hence, Jesus teaches us here that only Christians, those adopted into the spiritual family of God, can truly communicate with God…

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