Matthew 6:9-15 – “Pray, then, in this way:
‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. 10′ Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11′ Give us this day our daily bread. 12’And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13’And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’]
14 ” For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 “But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.” NASU
Yesterday we began to dive into the waters of God’s Life and I shared some of those things that have been birthed in my heart as I study this prayer. I want to state, up front, I do not know it all, and the more I learn the more I realize I don’t know much at all. However, I have a heart to Know Him and the more I pursue Him, the more He reveals Himself to me. I’m sure you have realized the same thing and therefore, it is my desire to learn to live in His presence and to encourage you to do the same.
Having opened my heart to the first sentence of the prayer, “Our Father, who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name” I am brought to a sense of humility. How could this God, the One True and Living God, the Creator of all things, care enough about me to invite me to come into His presence? How could He be willing to give us His Son to redeem us? How could He be so loving, compassionate, kind, longsuffering, forgiving, and good that He would invite us to ‘Call Upon Him?’ That is Amazing, to me! That’s who our God Is!
Once we have recognized and revered Who He is in our prayers and engaged in the directive and patter of David and Israel in Psalm 100:4-5 we can move to petition. I dare not just mention that Psalm without quoting it in its entirety. “Enter His gates with thanksgiving And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. 5 For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting And His faithfulness to all generations.” As I type I am in Awe of His Goodness and His Infinite Love, Mercy, and Grace! He is Mighty, Sovereign and yet He loves us and enjoys our Praise! The Bible says in Psalm 22:3 that God “Inhabits or is enthroned on the Praises of His People.” What can I say but Hallelujah?
The petition begins both a recognition and a request. “Your kingdom come.” Three words linked together that reveal something incredible for mankind. Jesus is instructing those who heard Him and all who read His directive and pattern to both recognize there is a reality called “God’s Kingdom” and that reality can be realized on earth. Some will reject that and insist that the Kingdom is future and when we get to heaven. If that is the case, then why would Jesus offer the next sentence?
I believe He was instructing us to pray for God’s Kingdom to come to help us understand the Will of God on earth and heaven. I believe it is the desire of the LORD that we walk in the fullness of God’s will and purpose and that would also include His power on earth. Jesus came, according to I John 3 to “destroy the works of the devil.” Destroy the works of the devil regarding sin, sickness, bondage, etc. He can to destroy the works of the devil and set man free!
What is the atmosphere of heaven? We have sung ‘Camping in Canaan’s Land’ for decades and many have made Canaan a type of heaven, but I have long contended that is inaccurate or incomplete. In Canaan, they had to dispossess the enemies that were occupying the Land or the Place of Promise. In heaven, there are no enemies possessing anything. I believe that crossing the Jordan was not talking about physical death but death to the flesh and entering Canaan was not heaven but entering into the Place of Promise. It represents life on earth for the believer. It represents a land flowing with milk and honey now. It represents victorious life on earth. It represents manifesting God’s presence in our present world. It represents bringing the atmosphere of heaven into our surroundings and enjoying the fullness of God’s Life, Love, and Purpose.
He said, following the directive to pray for God’s Kingdom to come to pray, “Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” That means involvement and co-laboring with God as well as discovering His will individually and collectively and obeying. God’s will is not mysterious and something He hides from us and makes difficult for us to discover or discern. What purpose would that serve Him or us? If you tell your children or a subordinate, “I have a plan and desire for you, but I will not tell you what it is and I’m going to make it a mystery but if you don’t discover it and do it, I will punish you” what purpose would that serve? No, you want them to know what you want and even want to share in their fulfillment of that will. So, does the Father!
I want to stop here and discuss this more tomorrow. I pray that the Holy Spirit will begin to give life to the seed that I’m trying to sow into your lives and in mine. “LORD, help us to see and believe that You truly want us to experience your Kingdom on earth and want us to both know and fulfill your will and plan for our lives.”
God bless you as you enjoy this beautiful day in Him!