MATTHEW 6:9_Hallowed be thy name.
Hallowed can be defined as to hold someone or something in reverence. This is a recognition of God as—the holy, revered God of Heaven. This is who you pray to when you pray. Don’t take this too lightly. It is important to hallow God in your prayer life.
Recognizing the holiness of God adds faith to prayer. You are not praying to someone who may or may not listen because He is too busy running the world. This is the Luke 1:37 (KJV) God, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” This is the God who created all of heaven and earth -He should be revered! This is the God who parted the waters of the Red Sea – He should be revered! This is the God who made the sun stand still – He should be revered!
The more you hallow God, the more you pray with courage. This is the God who gives you the ability to slay giants. Giants who taunt you with your weakness. This is the God who frees you from any shackles of bondage the devil has lured you into.
The Father in Heaven is pleased when you talk to Him about the cruelty the world has dealt you. He has already answered. Hebrews 13:5 (KJV), “… for he [God] hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
God of Heaven, I do hallow Your name. You only do I serve and give my heart to. You are God Alone, God of the Impossible, God of Creation. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ wants me to hallow the Father—I do!
MATTHEW 6:9_Our Father which art in Heaven…
Jesus begins by recognizing who God is. Remember how Elijah began his prayer in I King 18 (KJV), “36 And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel.”Recognizing God through Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob would be important to the Jewish community. Jesus’ recognition of God as Our Father which art in Heaven, opens up a prayer path for Gentiles. This says God is the Father of all mankind—not just the Jews. All people are made in His image.
God’s creation is amazing and miraculous. God’s DNA can connect you to your biological parents, whom you may have never met. You may blame God if you’ve never known your parents, or if you know them but have a poor relationship. Don’t blame God for the mistakes of people. Rather, praise God that He can help you overcome – anything.
Without a savior people are sinful. They cause pain – lots of pain. Your Father, which is in Heaven, wants to love you through the pain.
Include Him in your sorrow – don’t blame Him for it.
Father God, I worship You as the One True God, Creator of all of Heaven and Earth. I praise You there is nothing I face in life that You cannot give me the ability to overcome. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ wants me to know God is my Father—I do!
MATTHEW 6:9_After this manner therefore pray ye…
Jesus taught us how not to pray. The hypocrite in the synagogues and street corners. The heathen with vain repetitions and no heartfelt relationship with God.
Jesus taught us how to pray. Leave the outside out. Inside, alone with God with the door closed, the depths of our heart is exposed.
There is another reason private prayer is so important. Regardless of the fact that God already knows our heart, through private prayer we learn what’s in our heart. We have managed to hide some things so deep it requires talking to the Creator to bring them to the surface. We won’t learn that as easily in public prayer.
As in the previous devotion, there is a place for prayer groups and out-loud prayers. There is also a place for sharing prayer requests. If those requests are answered with a yes, you are not the only one praising. Psalm 109:27 (KJV), “That they may know that this is thy hand; that thou, Lord, hast done it.” If they are answered with a no, hopefully will not be the only one thanking. If they are answered with a wait, hopefully you will not be the only one anticipating God’s will.
Jesus will now teach us a model prayer. He does not teach this as the only prayer to pray. Take heed to the word manner in this verse – it is important. This prayer is a pattern.
If our prayers are just asking-for-something-prayers, this prayer teaches a better way.
Holy Creator, Teach me to pray. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ is the creator of prayer—He will teach me!
MATTHEW 6:8_before ye ask him.
In I Kings 18, God knew Elijah wanted the fire lit. It wasn’t necessary for Elijah to ask. But it was necessary for everyone listening to hear God proclaimed as the LORD, and Elijah as His prophet. His audible prayer may cause some Israelites to turn from idol worship to the One True God. Not all prayers should be private. There is a place for prayer groups and out-loud prayers.
Mark chapter 10 (KJV) gives an account of a blind man named Bartimaeus, “48 And many charged him [Bartimaeus] that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, ‘Thou son of David [Jesus], have mercy on me.’ 49 And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, ‘Be of good comfort, rise; he [Jesus] calleth thee.’ 50 And he [Bartimaeus], casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus. 51 And Jesus answered and said unto him, ‘What wilt thou that I should do unto thee?’ The blind man said unto him, ‘Lord, that I might receive my sight.’ 52 And Jesus said unto him, ‘Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole.’ And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.”
Jesus knew Bartimaeus was blind. Jesus knew Bartimaeus’ cry for mercy was to receive sight. Jesus wanted Bartimaeus to tell Him – out loud. Bartimaeus did. And received his heart’s cry.
God of Heaven, I will make known to You in prayer, everything in my heart. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ wants me to voice my prayers to Him—I will!
MATTHEW 6:8_for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of…
God knows our needs. That is not a reason to bail out on prayer. We decided prayer was primarily about building relationships. Getting to know each other.
If we’ve learned anything the past 150 plus days it’s that Jesus’ teachings are right, holy, and true. Jesus’ teachings lead us to be salt and light.
We can learn a lot about prayer from the prophet Nehemiah. He prayed well and often. Nehemiah 1:11 (KJV), “O Lord, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant, and to the prayer of thy servants, who desire to fear thy name: and prosper, I pray thee, thy servant this day, and grant him [Nehemiah] mercy in the sight of this man [King Artaxerxes].”
Nehemiah had a large request to ask King Artaxerxes. He wanted some time off. Not just a few days – years! Nehemiah wanted to leave Persia, return to his home town, Jerusalem, build a wall, and renew Israel’s faith in the LORD. He prayed before he asked the king. Nehemiah just prayed a lot. Notice he asked God to be attentive to the prayer of His servant. I learned that from him. I ask God to let His ears be attentive to the prayers of His servant (me).
Prayer is not about coming to God because you feel obligated. Neither is it only about asking God to do something for you, or give something to you.
Prayer is a form of worship.
Jesus Friend, Thank You that I am Your friend. I want to be a loving friend who enjoys communicating with You. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ is my friend—I am His friend!