Pray Then Like This

Matthew 6:9 (CSB) “Therefore, you should pray like this:
Our Father in heaven,
your name be honored as holy.

Our Father In Heaven

Thus far in the Lord’s instruction, Jesus Christ has helped and encourage us to pray like him. Let me sum up Christ’s teaching on prayer:

  • you must believe and trust in God

That is it. That is the message.

So this teaching in prayer is assuming that you do believe and trust in the Holy One of God. Otherwise, your prayers are nothing but babble.

With all of the major religions in the world, nothing sets apart Christianity more so than the forgiveness of sins, being made right-standing with God by God, and the fact that we have access to the Father as a child would to their own dad.

Even the other faiths that began with Abraham: Jewish and Muslim. For those of the Jewish faith, they have an strong, prevailing faith that God is indeed our Father for those who believe. But without Christ, it is wholly incomplete. To the Muslim and in the Koran, Allah is never referred to as Father.

Christ proclaims that for us to come to the Father, we must believe and trust in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ.

John 20:11-18 (CSB) But Mary stood outside the tomb, crying. As she was crying, she stooped to look into the tomb. She saw two angels in white sitting where Jesus’s body had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. They said to her, “Woman, why are you crying?” “Because they’ve taken away my Lord,” she told them, “and I don’t know where they’ve put him.” Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know it was Jesus. “Woman,” Jesus said to her, “why are you crying? Who is it that you’re seeking?”

Supposing he was the gardener, she replied, “Sir, if you’ve carried him away, tell me where you’ve put him, and I will take him away.”
Jesus said to her, “Mary.”
Turning around, she said to him in Aramaic, “Rabboni!”—which means “Teacher.”
“Don’t cling to me,” Jesus told her, “since I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them that I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”

Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them what he had said to her.

See what the Risen Christ says to Mary in verse 17:

“Don’t cling to me,” Jesus told her, “since I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them that I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”

In other words, Jesus is telling Mary: “I must ascend to the Father and it will be at that moment that you will have God as your Father.” (This is on Easter Sunday which he departs for a little while. What happens on Easter weekend is a whole other Doctrine series.)

You behold God? You trust in his Son? Here is what you gain as having God as Father:

You are alive

Romans 8:12-13 (CSB) So then, brothers and sisters, we are not obligated to the flesh to live according to the flesh, because if you live according to the flesh, you are going to die. But if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

You are being led by the Spirit of God

Romans 8:14 (CSB) For all those led by God’s Spirit are God’s sons.

Hebrews 12:5-11 (CSB) And you have forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons:
My son, do not take the Lord’s discipline lightly
or lose heart when you are reproved by him,
for the Lord disciplines the one he loves
and punishes every son he receives.
Endure suffering as discipline: God is dealing with you as sons. For what son is there that a father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline—which all receive—then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had human fathers discipline us, and we respected them. Shouldn’t we submit even more to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time based on what seemed good to them, but he does it for our benefit, so that we can share his holiness. No discipline seems enjoyable at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

You don’t get to descend back into slavery

Romans 8:15a (CSB) For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear.

You are adopted by God and you get to cry to God as Father

Romans 8:15b Instead, you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father!”

You are defended by God in front of God to the glory of God

Romans 8:16 (CSB) The Spirit himself testifies together with our spirit that we are God’s children,

You are now co-heirs (or another way to put it, joint heirs) with the One whom is heir of all things

Romans 8:17-18 (CSB) and if children, also heirs—heirs of God and coheirs with Christ—

Hebrews 1:1-2 (CSB) Long ago God spoke to our ancestors by the prophets at different times and in different ways. In these last days, he has spoken to us by his Son. God has appointed him heir of all things and made the universe through him.

You will suffer like Christ

Romans 8:17b-18 -if indeed we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is going to be revealed to us.

You will look like Christ

Romans 8:28-29 (CSB) We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

Psalms 17:15 (CSB) But I will see your face in righteousness;
when I awake, I will be satisfied with your presence.

You will be glorified in Christ

Romans 8:30 (CSB) And those he predestined, he also called; and those he called, he also justified; and those he justified, he also glorified.

Psalms 16:5-11 (CSB)
LORD, you are my portion
and my cup of blessing;
you hold my future.
The boundary lines have fallen for me
in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
I will bless the LORD who counsels me—
even at night when my thoughts trouble me.
I always let the LORD guide me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad
and my whole being rejoices;
my body also rests securely.
For you will not abandon me to Sheol;
you will not allow your faithful one to see decay.
You reveal the path of life to me;
in your presence is abundant joy;
at your right hand are eternal pleasures.

The Prayer

My Jesus
 
You have told me this so that I may know this: I can now come to the Father. My Father is mindful of me, and His will has already dictated our relationship to be so. You have done all the work. The Spirit bears witness with my Spirit that I am a child of God. This same Spirit that raised You from the grave dwells in me. As the Holy Spirit lives in me, He gives me the power, the right and privilege to go and be with the Father.

Father, I cannot think of You like some cruel, ruthless, thoughtless, mindless man voided of compassion and love. I dare not compare You in light of an earthly father. You are exalted and high and lifted up, all earthly fathers held in the view of You. You, O God, are good and do nothing but good.

Your faith is given to me and with this new heart You have given me, I now get to trust in You when Christ says, “Our Father is our perfect Father in heaven.” That means You are perfect in love, perfect in compassion, perfect in mercy, perfect in grace, perfect in judgment, holiness, righteousness, and faithfulness.

You, my Father in heaven, are high and lifted up above all other gods and all over the earth. You are the Triune God who is in the perfect community and perfect love, sufficient and satisfying in Yourself and needed no one else and nothing else. You are the Creator God who sees all and knows all.

You are all around the earth, and Your glory fills the earth. You are all-powerful, never to be limited to what You can and cannot do.

For I am certain: You are holy, far above our tragic depravity and our laughable idols; You are so far and distant as You cannot dare not to look upon our sins.

This is so very true: I am a stranger before you and lost as our Fathers were. Likewise, my days on the earth are like a shadow, and there was no hope. But, despite my horrific sin, my wicked thoughts, my desperately sick heart, my numerous transgressions; my gruesome pride; and in spite of me being so far away from You, You loved me so much that You thought of me from eternity past. Because You wanted me to be with You, You sent Your Son to do whatever it takes to bring me to You.

And You Son did it, perfectly, by your Spirit. Jesus Christ did so by giving over His perfect, spotless life for my cancerous, sin-infested, death-filled life. He did so by taking on Your just punishment that was meant for me and then poured out his blood to clean away all of my sins, wickedness, iniquities, transgressions, and evil. And it is by Your Spirit and by Your will, Your Son rose from death.

Why did You save me? I have not a clue. I did nothing to deserve Your gracious and everlasting love, even less so, Your undivided attention.

All I know is that I was once lost, now found; once blind, now I can see; once dead; now fully alive in You.All because of what You have done.

I love You, my God.

Media

Today’s episode at The Study

Live on Twitch! || YouTube || Discord || Apple || Spotify