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How Should We Pray?

 

Learning the art of prayer from Jesus

READ
Matthew 6:9-13

“Lord, teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1). This request by Jesus’ disciples led to what has long been known as the Lord’s Prayer. It packs great wisdom into simple words and invites us to rethink communication with God as a transformative experience that deepens our relationship with Him.

 

EXPLORE

As you meditate on each phrase, think about the broader implications of Jesus’ lesson on prayer. (For further study, explore the supporting passages of Scripture.)

  • Our Father who is in Heaven. We come into God’s presence as beloved children. (Matt. 18:1-3; Rom. 8:14-16).
  • Hallowed be Your name. Here, we call our souls into an attitude of worship that recognizes God’s personality, power, and beauty (Ps. 103).
  • Your kingdom come. This is a challenge to desire that God’s kingdom—not our own or anyone else’s—would take root and flourish in this world, including our personal circumstances (John 4:34).
  • Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Surrender your own desires to the Lord, and give the Holy Spirit permission to freely work in your life (Prov. 3:5-6).
  • Give us this day our daily bread. Acknowledging the Creator as our source, we ask Him to provide what He knows we truly need today—while trusting Him enough to leave the future in His hands (Matt. 6:25-34).
  • And forgive us our debts. To receive God’s forgiveness, we must confess to Him that at times, we go our own way (1 John 1:8-9; Isa. 1:18).
  • As we also have forgiven our debtors. The Christian’s calling is to let go of past hurts and release them to the Lord. Asking for healing, we should extend to our offenders the forgiveness and freedom we’ve received (Col. 3:12-13).
  • Lead us not into temptation. We need to ask for the Holy Spirit’s leadership and gift of discernment, rather than be deceived on a path of our own choosing (Ps. 61:1-3; 143:9-11).
  • But deliver us from evil. Through God, we can claim victory over the darkness around us (Col. 1:13-14)—He alone can deliver us from the Evil One of this world.

 

REFLECT

  1. What are the central purposes of prayer, according to Jesus’ model?
  2. What changes to your way of communicating with God can align your prayer life more with the Lord’s teaching?

 

(Find more Bible studies online at www.intouch.org/studies.)