The Lord taught His disciple’s how to pray but prior to that, He taught them how not to pray, “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him” (Matthew 6:7-8, NASB). Avoid meaningless repetitions. Memorized prayers with no heart, devoid of meaning are meaningless repetitions.
The Lord taught His disciple’s to pray this way,
“Pray, then, in this way:
‘Our Father who is 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 forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
‘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.’]
(Matthew 6:9-14, NASB).
Then a special emphasis on forgiveness, “For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions” (Matthew 6:15, NASB).
Be a disciple
- Make prayer intimate but respectful. ‘Our Father in heaven’ is about seeing God as father. This is the first time in Scripture that someone addressed God as father. We pray because He loves us and we love Him. Yet prayer is also about humility. He is in heaven and we are on the earth. In prayer, we must be intimate but at the same time be in a state of humility. We exalt Him with our hearts and lips, yet bow our heads and knees in humility.
- ‘Hallowed be Your name’ is about being in awe of His name, to treat His name as holy, to show reverence. There should be that combination of intimacy, humility, respect, and the fear of the Lord every time we pray.
- Recognize God’s kingdom and submit to His will. ‘Your kingdom come. Your will be done.’ We are to pray for His Kingdom to expand and His will to be done. To know God’s will as revealed by the Bible is necessary to make this an intelligent endeavor.
- We are to pray for our daily needs. Although we know that God knows our needs before we even mention them, it is still good to specifically mention our daily needs to Him in prayer.
- Our debts against God is our sins. However, through Christ we are forgiven. In His name, we pray for God’s forgiveness upon us. In confessing sin, it is best to be specific about the sin rather than being general. Better to say forgive me of my pride than forgive me for all my sins.
- We must forgive all who wronged us. No matter how hard it is. Let us just keep in mind that the Lord is willing to forgive our countless offenses against Him. Why can’t we forgive others when the Lord asked us to do so as stated in His word?
- Pray that we are not tested or tempted even though we know that we shall all pass through trials. And always pray to be delivered from people of evil intentions, from the plans of the forces of darkness, and from any situation that may cause us harm spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically.
- Praise Him. ‘For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’ The word, ‘kingdom’ was mentioned twice in the prayer. This is consistent with Matthew’s intent that the Lord Jesus is the King.
- Encourage others to pray consistently and fervently
- Teach what the Lord taught
- Inspire others to follow the pattern of the Disciple’s Prayer.
- Do I have a sense of intimacy, respect, and awe whenever I approach God in prayer?
- Do I treat His name as holy?
- Am I submitted to His Lordship and His will expressed in the Bible? Do I pray for the expansion of His kingdom and do I pray for His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven?
- Do I pray for my daily needs?
- Do I confess my sins to the Lord to seek for His forgiveness?
- Do I forgive others?
- Am I aware of the trials, temptations, and testings? Do I pray for God’s protection and guidance not to be led to these fiery trials?
- Do I praise Him because He is Lord of all?