– Matthew 6:5-15
The six sides of the hexagon represent and remind us of: God’s Character – God’s Kingdom – God’s Provision – God’s Forgiveness – God’s Guidance – God’s Protection that are all a part of the Lord’s Prayer.
The Lord’s Prayer however is not a prayer that Jesus had to pray, but a prayer that Jesus’ disciples should use as a model for their own prayers. The value of the Lord’s Prayer is not found in the repetition of the prayer in church services, but in using it as a model. The Lord’s Prayer is a skeleton, you could say, of things we ought to know about God when we pray. Using each part, we put “meat” on that skeleton to produce a prayer that is pleasing to God.
”Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name” – We begin by thinking of our approach to God in Prayer. It is so easy to rush into his presence, forgetting to whom we are speaking. When we approach God in prayer, we need to pause and to focus on just who we are talking to. When we come to our Heavenly Father, we must realize that we only have access into God’s presence because of what the Lord Jesus did for us. When I come to God in prayer, I am on speaking terms with the God of the Universe. Yet, I am coming to someone who cares. I am coming to someone who wants to listen. I am coming to someone who knows me and under-stands me better than anyone else in this whole world! That’s awesome!
But when I pray, “Our Father, which art in Heaven”, I am also reminding myself that my Heavenly Father is in charge of the throne room of the universe! It is God who sits on the Heavenly Throne and runs the show!
I am also reminded of the fact that there is a heavenly realm…a spiritual realm that is beyond what I know and see. “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12) “His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms,” (Ephesians 3:10)
The words “hallowed be Thy name” means “holy”. To “hallow” also means to sanctify, to be sound, fit or whole, to be perfect, free from defilement, uncontaminated. It means to have a different quality of being, to be extraordinary, above and over all. To hallow God’s Name is to recognize, regard, respect, reverence, profess and proclaim God as holy. We don’t add to God’s holiness in prayer – we treat Him as holy. Although we have free access to God, we should always remember that when we take advantage of His open-door policy, we speak to Him with reverence.
The many Names of God in Scripture describe His nature and attributes; they explain Who He is: Yahweh- God ; Elohim- Creator, Lord of Lords; El Shaddai-God Al-mighty; El Elyon- God Most High; Jehovah-jireh- God our provider; Jehovah-shalom- God of our peace; Whatever name or descriptor we use, his name is to be “hallowed.”
When we pray “Thy Kingdom come” we are asking God to advance and expand that Kingdom in the hearts of people, and we are anticipating the day when that Kingdom literally comes when Jesus returns. It is a Kingdom that is both present and future – it is here and now and will one day come in fullness. “Thy Kingdom come” is an evangelistic prayer. We are part of the answer to this, for we have a role in bringing God’s Kingdom to completeness. “Thy Kingdom come” is a call for God to increase His Kingdom, to convert the hearts of unbelievers, to draw people to a saving knowledge of Christ. It is also the realization that one day God’s Kingdom will literally be a kingdom on earth “as it is in heaven” with Christ on the throne and “we shall rule with him forever and ever”! It is an awesome privilege inherited only by those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Paul describes “the Kingdom of God”…as righteousness and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. If the Kingdom is within us, this means we’re children of the King. We can’t honestly pray for His rule over others unless want Him to rule us. Therefore, “Thy Kingdom come” means we are under the Lordship of Christ.
As Christians, we hold dual citizenship. Paul states, “our citizenship is in heaven” (Philippians 3:20). We are governed by human law, but also by Biblical truth. We are loyal to our nation, but we recognize that we belong to God’s Kingdom. Nations may rise and fall, but we are part of a holy, perfect Kingdom that will last forever, whose Architect is the Lord God Almighty. Paul explains that God “has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the Kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14). One day, yet future, the forces of evil will be finally routed by the host of heaven. In the meantime, we pray, “Thy Kingdom come.”
More to come…..