Scripture reading for January 8th: Genesis 18-21, Matthew 6
Key Scriptures: Matthew 6:9-13 “Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your Name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and for give us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.””
Jesus, in teaching His disciples how to pray, gave simple instructions. He laid out a pattern for them. God was addressed as ‘Our Father in heaven’, implying family relationship. Really, the term ‘Father’ is more like ‘Daddy’! The priority was to His will being done, not ours! We were to acknowledge our dependence on Him for everything: provision, forgiveness, and protection from evil and the evil one.
Genesis 18:23-25 “Then Abraham drew near and said, “Will You indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city. Will You then sweep away the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous who are in it? Far be it from You to do such a thing, to put the righteous to death with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked. Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?””
Prayer: Father, thank you for Your simple instructions and the ability of Your people to come before you and ask questions and declare our needs! In Your Holy Name, Amen.
Scripture reading for January 8th: Matthew 6
Key Scriptures: Matthew 6:9-13 “This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your Name, Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”
Jesus taught His disciples how to pray. This prayer was not intended to be just some words prayed by rote memory. Jesus wanted the disciples to know God as their Father and have a relationship with others and the Father. He was to be addressed corporately as “Our Father”! We stand in relationship with others also praying to the same Father in heaven.
This Father is holy and His Name is to be reverenced. His disciples remind themselves of God’s holiness and their need of humility and reverence every time they approach God’s throne. The Father is also a King and has a kingdom. His children pray that Kingdom will come upon the earth and His will will be done here as it is done perfectly in heaven.
The disciples are also dependent on God for daily provision. We recognize God as our provider as well as the only One who can forgive us our sins. Forgiveness can only be granted to us as we release those who have offended us! God alone can protect us from our enemy, “the Evil One”, or Satan. We need this protection each day as well as provision and forgiveness.
Observations for over-comers: Prayer is the lifeline of disciples of Jesus. “But I call to God, and the Lord saves me. Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress, and He hears my voice. He ransoms me unharmed from the battle waged against me. .” (Psalm 55:16-18)