Tag Archives: Israel

The Lord’s Prayer (Part 2)

This is the second installment of my look at the Lord’s payer in Matthew chapter 6.  You can read part 1 here.

This is the entire prayer:

“Our Father who is in the heavens, Your name be sanctified; Your kingdom come; Your will be done, as in heaven, so also on earth.  Give us today our daily bread.  And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.  And do not bring us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.  For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.  Amen.”

This time I’ll focus on verses 11-13, beginning with “Give us today our daily bread.”

The devotional I’m using points out that in this prayer for the kingdom, the King doesn’t want us to worry about tomorrow, as verse 6:34 indicates.  Instead, he wants us to pray for our daily bread.  This means living by faith.  When I read this I immediately thought about the children of Israel as they wandered in the wilderness for 40 years.  The only thing they ate during that time was the manna sent by God every morning.  They were specifically instructed to not store any manna for the next day or else it would bread worms and stink (Exo. 16:20).  This was their daily bread.  They trusted that Jehovah would send the manna the next morning, so they didn’t worry about saving some for later.  The devotional says “The kingdom people should not live on what they have stored; rather, by faith they should live on the Father’s daily supply.”  O Lord!  I want to live like this!  I don’t want to worry about tomorrow or trust in what I have!  Teach me how to live by faith and trust in Your provision!

This prayer also indicates that we need to take care of our relationship with others.  I’m so independent that I usually have no thought concerning others.  If I hurt someone’s feelings, I just think “Meh.  They’ll get over it.”  Or if someone hurts my feelings, I simply avoid them until I forgot why I was mad at them in the first place.  But this isn’t what the Lord tells us to do in verse 12.  I need to actively ask the Father to forgive my debts and not make the lazy excuse that I’ve been washed by the blood of Christ, so I’m good as far as sin is concerned.  I also need to forgive others as opposed to my usual modus operandi, which is to let everything callous over and hopefully go away by virtue of sheer forgetfulness.

I thought the last two paragraphs on this devotional were pretty outstanding, so I’m just going to let you read them for yourself:

“The prayer to the Father concludes in this way: ‘For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.  Amen.’  Here is the realization and praise of God’s kingdom, power, and glory.  This also refers to the Triune God.  The kingdom is of the Son, which is the realm in which God exercises His power.  The power is of the Spirit, which carries out God’s intention so that the Father can express His glory….Thus, the prayer taught by the Lord in His supreme teaching begins with God the Father (v. 9) and also ends with God the Father (v. 13).”

“Such a critical prayer surely increases our seeking of the kingdom of the heavens as the Father’s heart’s desire and affords us our need of the divine supply of grace to fulfill all the supreme and strict requirements of the kingdom of the heavens for the Father’s good pleasure.  On the one hand, we are seeking for something according to the Father’s hearth’s desire.  On the other hand, we have the supply to fulfill something for the Father’s good pleasure.”

Isn’t this good?!  I never saw the Triune God in this prayer before.  How wonderful to see the deeper significance behind this prayer!  This isn’t just something to repeat in a rote way!  It’s a pattern of a prayer that can actually increase our seeking for and desire of the Father’s will!  But it doesn’t end there!  This prayer also gives us the way to ask for the grace required for meeting the Father’s requirements for the kingdom of the heavens.  This is how I want to pray.  Lord make me a person that prays prayers that take care of the Triune God, my daily necessity, my relationship with God and with others, and also of Satan!

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Joshua

English: English translation of hebrew version...

English: English translation of hebrew version. Map of the twelve tribes of Israel, before the move of Dan to the North (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today some of my friends from Christians on Campus and I got to help out with a VBS type camp called Summer School of Truth Jr.  It’s for kids in grades 1-6 and the topic this year is Joshua and how he helped the children of Israel enter into the good land (Canaan).

The major theme that my partner and I were supposed to speak over was “We should take the lead to work to accomplish God’s purpose and to help others to enter into what God has provided for them.”  Joshua was really a pattern in this respect.  He and Caleb were the only two original spies sent my Moses that came back from Canaan with a good report.  They wanted to stand by faith on God’s word to fight for the good land, but the rest of the Israelites were afraid of the natives and shrunk back, thus beginning their forty years of sojourning through the wilderness.

Anyway, there’s a lot in the book of Joshua that I enjoyed while preparing to speak to the kids, but what I was really impressed with was that Joshua fought for other people.  He lead the children of Israel in the fight against the all the nations in the promised land (Deuteronomy 1:38), but he didn’t do it so that he could establish his own little kingdom.  Joshua 11:23 says “So Joshua took the whole land according to all that Jehovah had spoken to Moses; and Joshua gave it as an inheritance to Israel according to their divisions by their tribes.  And the land had rest from war.”

God prepared that land in Canaan for the children of Israel and promised it to Abraham in Genesis 15, but He still needed someone to cooperate with Him to take it and distribute it among the tribes of Israel.  According to Deuteronomy 31:7, Joshua was that man, but like I said, he didn’t do anything for himself.  He didn’t even allot himself any part of the land he had waited forty years to possess.  Joshua 19:49 says “So they finished distributing the land as inheritances according to its borders.  And the children of Israel gave Joshua the son of Nun an inheritance in the midst of them.”

Joshua gave everyone else their land first.  He took care of everyone else first.  He fought for everyone else first.  In the Bible the good land is a type of Christ and inheriting the land is a type of enjoying the Christ we have received from God.  So today, I’m just considering how much I have fought for other people so that they can enjoy the inheritance and the riches that God has prepared for them.  I know I’ve experienced being on the receiving end when people have prayed for me, expounded a verse in the Bible I was struggling to understand, or even just helped me to sing a hymn of praise in a church meeting.

But have I done this for others?  I know that to a small extent, the answer is yes.  I have prayed for people, read the Bible with them, and encouraged them when they were down.  However, I know that I have also shrunk back from helping someone in need or tried to greedily get something for myself.

Romans 15:1-2 say “But we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those who are weak and not to please ourselves.  Let each of us please his neighbor with a view to what is good for building up.”  So many times my view is toward myself and not toward the Body of Christ.  If I’m strong in something I want to get stronger and not be weighed down by someone I think is weak.  This is absolutely against what God is doing.  God wants us to live our Christian life with a view toward what is good for the building up of others, with a view toward helping others gain the Christ that God has prepared for them.

O Lord Jesus!  Make me one who takes the lead to work for others and helps them enter into the what You have prepared for them!

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