The Model Prayer


“One of His disciples said to Him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” (Luke 11: 1) Jesus responded, saying, “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. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’” (Matthew 6: 9 – 13)


The disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray; He responded by reciting what is now known as ‘the Lord’s prayer.’ This concise intercession contains every essential element of the Christian faith, condensed into a simple paragraph. Firstly, Jesus uses the words ‘Our Father’ as a reference to the community of believers; prayer is meant to be recited in fellowship with other faithful individuals (although private prayer is also essential.) He then identifies God’s place in Heaven and elevates Him, saying, “hallowed be Your name.” ‘Hallowing’ God’s name entails a recognition that God is perfect and worthy of all honor and praise; and in turn, we acknowledge and embrace our own unworthiness (humility.) Additionally, we are implored to hunger for the arrival of His coming kingdom (the second coming.) Our greatest desire is that His will would be done here on Earth, as it is in heaven. We then ask God to give us our “daily bread;” a reference to God providing for our needs in the present time; today; not tomorrow or the next day. Also, we must request God’s forgiveness; but only in proportion to our forgiveness of others; as God detests hypocrisy. Continuing on, we pray for God to assist us in avoiding evil, as He alone can deliver us from our temptations. And finally, Jesus praises God once again; ascribing to Him the power and glory for all eternity.

In this prayer, we are instructed to ask for God’s deliverance from evil, because He alone is powerful enough to protect us from our enemies. In the 1800’s, a missionary named John Paton landed in the New Hebrides Islands; an area infested with warlike cannibals who had eaten two previous missionaries. Still, under constant threat of death he never waivered; introducing the faith to thousands of lost souls. During one particular account, John wrote, “A wild chief followed me around for four hours with his loaded musket, and, though often directed towards me, God restrained his hand. I spoke kindly to him, and attended to my work as if he had not been there, fully persuaded that my God had placed me there, and would protect me till my allotted task was finished. Looking up in unceasing prayer to our dear Lord Jesus, I left all in his hands, and felt immortal till my work was done.” Over the years, as the threats against him continued, John would reach out to God for deliverance. He eventually went to be with the Lord at the ripe old age of 82.

In our lives, Like John, we too will face adversity and trials. Our duty as believers is to request God’s protection and ask for His deliverance from evil. This simple belief is reiterated in the Lord’s prayer; which is a simplified way to address God, given to us by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This is a powerful prayer that we should consider adding to our daily devotions; we would also benefit from reciting it while we fellowship with other believers. 

“Dear Heavenly Father, we praise you for your goodness and glory. As we seek to draw near to you, may our prayers be filled with faith. Your Son is our example, and we yearn to be more like Him. When trials and temptations arise, we ask for Your deliverance and provision. Only through You can we be saved. We love you Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name. Amen.” God bless all of you!

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