THINK ABOUT THE LORD’S PRAYER
We say the prayer often, but in spite of that (or perhaps because of that) we sometimes don’t really stop to think about what we are saying. Let’s take a quick analysis of what is in this beautiful, truly remarkable prayer that Jesus himself gifted to us.
Our Father who art in Heaven.
Hallowed be Thy name.
Jesus indicates it is right for us to think of God as a loving “Father”. (He doesn’t suggest that we start the prayer “Our Supreme Being”). God is of course our loving Creator, therefore “Hallowed be thy name”.
Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done,
on Earth as it is in Heaven.
God’s will is always observed in Heaven, and we pray that the time will come when it is always observed on Earth. We ask that God’s kingdom may reside in our souls, hearts and minds, during our time on Earth, and of course in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
This doesn’t ask for riches, but rather simple sustenance; and it is a day-by-day request. (Jesus doesn’t suggest we ask for a banquet each day for the rest of our lives). And, of course, “bread” is a metaphor for the necessities of our body and soul.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
This is an extremely important part of the prayer and deserves our full attention. It basically says that we will be forgiven in the same measure as we forgive others.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
We acknowledge that we are basically weak and susceptible to the many temptations we face each day. We live in a world that contains evil, and so we ask that God help us avoid temptation and give us grace to resist evil when it appears.
This word means that we hope and believe that the requests in our prayer are heard. We are confident it is so.