Preached to the Saints at Riverview Baptist on the morning of February 12, 2017
At 798 Santa Fe Pike, Columbia, TN
Last Wednesday we continued looking at Jesus’ Sermon On The Mount in Matthew chapter 6. Jesus addressed (1) Giving to the poor, and (2) Prayer. Both Giving as well as Prayer are to be God glorifying. We are neither to Give nor to Pray so as to be “seen of men”.
God Is To Be Glorified In All We Do
As Jesus prayed before He went to the Cross He felt the strain of what was coming. Jesus prayed:
John 12:27 (KJV) Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour.
Jesus was coming to the hour of death. Calvary was in view. He knew the beating, He knew the humiliation that was coming – but Christ would not withdraw. He prayed:
John 12:28 … Father, glorify thy name.
Jesus showed us that what matters most is that we glorify God our Father. Even with the Cross in view the “Beloved Son in Whom the Father is well pleased” does not pray for relief, but that God be glorified. Immediately after His prayer – a public prayer that all heard – The Father spoke from Heaven, saying:
“I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.”
God will answer any prayer that glorifies His Name. He is to be glorified, to be magnified, to be lifted up. In Matthew 6 Jesus gave His “Sermon on The Mount”. His disciples – those who have received Him as Master – are sitting at His feet. And as we saw last Wednesday Jesus scorches the “hypocrites” who do “religious” things to be seen of men.
We give to glorify God.
We pray to glorify God.
Prayer is communication between a loving Heavenly Father and His Child. Public prayer is not forbidden, for as we have seen, Jesus often prayed publicly. But prayer is never for show. If you NEVER pray publicly that is all right, but NEVER pray publicly to be seen of men. Let’s say the Lord’s Prayer together:
Matthew 6:9-13 (KJV) After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.  Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread.  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
There Is No “I” Or “Me” In The Lord’s Prayer
When we make our first overview of the Lord’s Prayer we notice first of all that there is no “I” or “Me” in the entirety of this prayer. Every pronoun tied to man used is plural. Everything is:
There is a reason for that. The basis of the Lord’s Prayer is LOVE, and LOVE never stands alone. Love always involves at least two parties. In eternity past before mankind was ever created God loved. God is One, but three Persons, Father, Son, and Spirit. Each member of the Godhead loves the other. God has designed us with self love, but a person who loves self and never extends outward to love others is either a sociopath or a narcissist. Jesus was oner time asked …
Matthew 22:36-40 (NASB) … “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”
The Entirety Of Scripture Is Hung On The Heavenly Nail Of Love.
It is no wonder the Lord’s Prayer would emphasize Love. Those sitting at Christ’s feet are those who have been saved by Love. They have heard that “God so loved the world that He gave His Only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16). Those kneeling at Jesus’ feet have believed that Christ gave Himself for them. They have “confessed with their mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believed in their hearts that God raised Him from the dead, and are saved” (Romans 10:9). They are now “Children of God through faith in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:26).
The Prayer that God expects from His Children is not to be “I” and “Me” but “Us”. We are His Family. I want you to notice also:
This Prayer Is A Pattern
Jesus says “After this manner you pray”. The three words translated “after this manner” is the Greek οὕτω(ς) houtō(s), which means “in this way” or “in this fashion”. What Jesus was teaching was a pattern of prayer. When I was little my daddy, an upholsterer, would take customer’s couches or chairs and put new material on them. Daddy was quite good. I found out that daddy would take the old material off of the furniture then flatten it out and trace around it, using the old as a pattern to cut out the new material. Jesus gives us a pattern of prayer. Jesus never wanted us chanting this Lord’s Prayer but following the outline He gave us.
The first two words of proper prayer is to recognize our relationship to God. “Our Father”. Prayer is the privilege of the Child of God. God expects to hear from us if we are His. If you are saved by faith in Christ you are EXPECTED to pray. Jesus did not say …
“IF you pray”, or
“When circumstances make you pray”, but
“After this manner YOU PRAY”
If you love God as your Father then you should want to pray. Prayer should not be an effort. When I was young my parents used to get mad at me and my wife because we couldn’t go home every Christmas. We had lives, and distance separated us. Though I tried to call momma on special days there were times when I missed calling her (and regretted doing so). But God is with you no matter where you are, dear Christian. Jesus has said “I will never leave you nor forsake you” but Scripture doesn’t stop there, but goes on to say:
Hebrews 13:6 (NASB) … so that we confidently say, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid. What will man do to me?”
The Bible tells us to “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Prayer should not be occasional, for our Father is with us no matter where we go. We should pray conversationally with our Lord, trusting Him Who loves us so. When we pray “Our Father” we are reminded that
Father is our Provider
Father is our Sustainer
Father is our Heavenly Parent
The Jews were frightened of God, so much so that they would not say His Name out loud lest they offend Him. But Yahweh loves us, and Jehovah fights for us. We are His, and He is ours.
Which Art In Heaven
We have fathers and parents who we love and honor on this earth, but our Perfect Father is in Heaven. He is above us. He knows what is best for us. The Psalmist wrote:
Psalms 139:1-5 O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.  Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.  Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.  For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.  Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.
God is pure, and holy, and just. He is infinite, both in knowledge and in power. He is “our Father in Heaven”, and watches over us. What a Great God He is!
Hallowed Be Thy Name
This doesn’t say that we are to “Hallow” God’s Name, but we recognize that God’s Name is Hallowed. The word “Hallowed” is the Greek ἁγιάζω hagiazō, which means “holy, pure, consecrated”. When we come to God in prayer we are to remember that God is Holy and Righteous.
He will not answer nor even hear a prayer that is unholy, loveless, or evil. The Bible says:
John 9:31 Now we know that GOD HEARETH NOT SINNERS: but if any man be a WORSHIPPER OF GOD, AND DOETH HIS WILL, him he heareth.
1 John 5:14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing ACCORDING TO HIS WILL, HE HEARETH US:
God will not answer sinful prayer, nor does He answer prayers that are outside of His will. God is Holy. He will not bless unrighteousness, but He will hear and save the lost if they cry out to Him. When the Christian comes to God in prayer it should be with the understanding that God is Holy. If we are in sin then we “should confess our sin, for He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done, On Earth As It Is In Heaven
Any prayer that God blesses is directed first and foremost to building His Kingdom and accomplishing His Will. The Kingdom of God was central to Christ’s teaching and preaching ministry. Jesus said:
Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Any prayer that does not “seek first the Kingdom of God” will not be blessed. We are to pray that God’s influence INCREASES on the earth. We are to pray that WHAT IS UP THERE COMES DOWN HERE. We are to pray that God’s Kingdom comes to this earth, and that people realizer that our Father is King of THIS earth. King David prayed …
Psalm 74:12 (ESV) Yet God my King is from of old, working salvation in the midst of the earth.
And King David prayed in 1 Chronicles 29:11-12 (ESV) Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. 12 Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all.
Where man reigns there is chaos, but where God reigns there is peace and blessing. This world will never get better on its own.
Nihilism has proved to be an empty void
Atheism has brought only godless behavior
Humanism has fed greed and selfishness
Feminism has given us ashes for beauty
Pro-Choice has murdered millions
This broken nation – nay, every nation, needs God. People need the Lord. People need THE LORD. Not a buddy, not a religion, but a pure and holy LORD GOD to serve and magnify.
Give US This Day Our Daily Bread
What does “Daily Bread” represent?
Bread Represents Work. Some people do nothing, expecting the world to take care of them. This is welfare gone mad. The Apostle said:
2 Thessalonians 3:10-12 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.  For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.  Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and EAT THEIR OWN BREAD.
Bread is the fruit of a person’s WORK. God expects His Children to work. When Israel was given MANNA in the wilderness (see Exodus 16), that “bread from Heaven”, each person had to go out and gather what they were allowed to eat. The Bible says:
Proverbs 14:23 (ESV) In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty.
Bread Represents God’s Word. When tempted of the Devil to turn stones into bread Jesus told that old dog:
Matthew 4:4 …. Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Pastor Rick Warren said “Real life comes by feeding on every word of the Lord. You don’t just need physical nourishment; you also need spiritual nourishment.”
Bread Represents The Saved In Fellowship With God And With One Another. Jesus said we are to pray “Give US this day our daily bread”.
1 Corinthians 10:16-17 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?  For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.
If you are born again by the Grace of God you are brothers and sisters together. It is not the name on the membership roll that gets you into Heaven, but whether your name is on that “roll up yonder”, the Book of Life. Heaven is the place where God’s Children go. The Bible says:
Revelation 21:27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
If you have eaten of the Bread of Heaven, then you are the Bread of Heaven. You are part of a Family that will last forever, the Family of God.
And Forgive Us Our Debts As We Forgive Our Debtors
Forgiveness of sin is contingent on our forgiveness of others. Jesus continues this thought at the end of the Lord’s Prayer, just after the “Amen”. He said:
Matthew 6:14-15 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:  But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
“If you forgive MEN”. Jesus doesn’t use Adelphos here (“Brothers”) but ἄνθρωπος Anthrōpos which means “Mankind”. We are not called to just forgive our brothers or sisters in Christ who offend us, but ANYONE regardless as to race, sex, or religion. Those who pray are not to carry grudges. This doesn’t mean we FORGET the offense, but we FORGIVE the offense, releasing the offending party unto God. The Bible says:
Romans 12:17-21 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.  If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.  Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.  Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.  Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
God will sort everything out. He is, after all, our Heavenly Father. I saw a movie one time where a married couple decided to take vengeance on the drunkard who ran their son over, killing him. They captured him, beat him, nearly killed him … then found out later they had the wrong man. They ended up in jail for no good reason. The Bible says to let God deal with the situation. Regardless of emotion, do good to those who have done bad to you. Release the grudge, and be Children of Light. Then you can pray “Forgive Us Our Debts, As We Forgive Our Debtors”. We have all failed God many times, and He has and will forgive us. Let it go. Let it go!
Matthew 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
As the prayer is closed we pray that God will deliver us from Evil. We pray that God will draw us away from anything that will not glorify Him. Then we close the prayer as we began the prayer, giving glory to God.
Thine Is The KINGDOM
And The GLORY
We live for God’s Kingdom. We live for God’s glory. We live in His power, magnifying Him. This is what the Christ Follower does.
We glorify God.
We magnify our Father.