Matthew 6: 9
We are returning to look at the most famous prayer in the world, which is probably uttered millions of times daily. Jesus obviously wanted us to pray this prayer frequently. He says, “Pray in this way”; at least take hold of the principles found here.
I believe this prayer is essential to our understanding in many ways. Tonight, I want us to focus on two fundamental truths, Who is God and Who are you. These truths crystallize two identity issues. This prayer shows how great God is. How could we argue for God’s greatness from this prayer? He dwells in heaven and He rules a kingdom. This points to His sovereignty and might. He’s not a little God, but a mighty God who we worship.
This prayer also gives us a healthy perspective of ourselves. Only God is self-sufficient as the Creator. We are dependent on God. There is a creature/ Creator distinction here. God does not need us; He didn’t make us because He needed us, but we do need Him. How could we argue this truth from the Lord’s Prayer? The very simple petition: “Give us this day our daily bread.” In every day life, we are dependent on God. The moment we are born, we are dependent. Someone has said, We come into this life like babies and we leave like babies. Totally dependent.
Was the first man Adam dependent on God? Yes. Where do we see that in Genesis 2? Well, he needed the helper God created. He also needed food, so God put him in a garden. The first man and woman were dependent creatures, dependent on God. We are reminded every day, every time we eat how much we need God. Think about how much of our lives are centered around food. If we thoroughly grasped this one petition, it would help us live the Christian life. It would promote in us a deep sense of dependency and humility.
One of the great dangers of living in America is our affluence. How many of us get up in the morning worrying about our need for daily bread? We have our cupboards stocked. Many of us have a surplus of money; we are financially secure. It seems everything is taken care of. Because our lives appear this way, it breeds self-sufficiency. When this happens, our prayer lives shrivel. We lose our sense of dependence on God.
Remember God gave that warning to His people in Deuteronomy 8? He said, When you come out of the wilderness and enter the promised land, beware lest you forget Me. You are going to have houses, gold and silver, multiplied flocks, but don’t forget the God who brought you out of Egypt. We can easily forget God.
We are dependent on Him not just for temporal things, but spiritual as well. He calls Himself the Bread of Life. Also, the Word is called bread. Jesus said, “Man cannot live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” Every time we hear a sermon or read the Bible, we are dependent on God to feed our souls. So, we can remember these two great lessons: how great God is and how dependent we are.