Thursday, August 9, 2012
“In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father 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 forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours in the kingdom and the power and the glory forever, Amen” (Matthew 6:9-13).
IDEA: When Christians talk to God in prayer, they can address Him as “Father” because Jesus did.
PURPOSE: To help listeners understand the privilege they have as sons and daughters of a heavenly Father.
When Michelle Obama met with the Queen of England, people were shocked when she touched the queen in a friendly gesture. Why were some people bothered?
Suppose you were going to visit the Queen of England: what questions would you have for the audience with her?
- What should I wear?
- How should I address her?
I. Suppose you had no previous knowledge of protocol and you had to decide how you would address the Sovereign Majesty of the universe: how would you address Him?
Would you dare address him as “father”? How about “daddy”?
In the Old Testament, believers believed in the Fatherhood of God, but it always had to do with God as the Creator-Father of the nation Israel.
The term “Father” is used only 14 times in the 39 books of the Old Testament.
In the 14 times it is always used speaking of God with reference to the nation of Israel.
God is spoken of as Israel’s father, but no Old Testament character dared to speak of God as “My Father” or used that form of address to Him when they prayed.
In the Jewish culture of the first century, Jesus’ contemporaries focused on God’s sovereignty and transcendence. They never repeated His covenant name Yahweh, and so they invented a different name for God as a substitute. (This is true even today.)
II. What do you make of the fact that when Jesus came to earth, He addressed God only as “Father”?
He never used any other address. All of His prayers address God as “father.”
No one in the entire history of Israel ever spoke or prayed as Jesus did.
What should we make of this in Jesus and in ourselves?