“Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray ….” – Luke 11:1

Imagine with me that we were among disciples in the presence of Jesus during his earthly ministry in ancient Palestine. In the Gospel accounts, disciples were witnesses to prayers of Jesus as he performed powerful miracles of healing, forgiving, and feeding folks—as well as raising his friend Lazarus from the dead.

If we had been present with the disciples, we would have noted, moreover, that Jesus routinely prayed privately. “And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he [Jesus] … went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed” (Mark 1:35). Luke 5:16 records, “But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray.”

Therefore, surely we—along with the disciple in today’s key Bible verse—would have treasured every prayer Jesus spoke. And we also would have implored, “Lord, teach us to pray!” In response to this request, Jesus prayed the words known through the centuries as the Lord’s Prayer, recorded in Luke 11:2-4 and Mathew 6:9-13.

Today’s believers have the benefit of Jesus’s wisdom and guidance provided in this model prayer, also called the Disciples’ Prayer. In coming weeks, we will examine each phrase, clause, and concept Jesus included in this masterfully worded Lord’s Prayer. Historically, its words have been spoken publicly among believers in churches or other groups—and privately by individuals during devotional times.

Bible scholars agree that the brief words of the Lord’s Prayer summarize spiritual truths that are important for Christ followers to understand and believe. The words provide an inspiring example to guide our own prayerful thoughts and words.

Jesus acknowledges the nature and relationship of God in the prayer. He reveals God’s exalted position, power, purpose, provision, and protection. The Lord’s Prayer offers, in microcosm, God’s eternal agenda for his creation and his people.

Jesus included in his prayer several principles from 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

Pointing to Jesus as our “great high priest who has passed through the heavens,” the writer of Hebrews (in 4:14) further enlightens us in verse 16, “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

We thank you, Lord Jesus, for compassionately leading us—heart, soul, and mind—to God, our Father, as you teach us to pray. And we desire to the utmost, God’s will in all things, always. Amen.

 Kay Henry is a columnist for The Claremore Progress. All Bible quotations are from “The Holy Bible, English Standard Version” (ESV), unless otherwise noted.

Trending Video

Recommended for you