The Art of Intercession (“Our Father”)

In the last few messages, I have just begun to look at our Lord’s Prayer as a pattern for intercession. So by golly, I think I am going to do something different and actually show you how we can actually take His Prayer, and use it to pray for our families! So hang onto your butts:

Our Father in heaven . . . (Matthew 6:9)

It is both interesting and fascinating that Jesus begins his prayer by instructing us to say, “Our Father in heaven . . .” (Matthew 6:9). Our difficulty is that we have heard that phrase so many times, we aren’t moved by it. But we should be. Jesus was introducing the people to something they had never imagined was possible. He prayed, “Our Father . . .” but no Jew would dare say such a thing. They couldn’t even pronounce His Name!

As Wikipedia points out:

The tetragrammaton (from Greek Τετραγράμματον, meaning “[consisting of] four letters”, is the Hebrew theonym יהוה, commonly transliterated into Latin letters as YHWH. It is one of the names of God used in the Hebrew Bible. The name may be derived from a verb that means “to be“, “to exist“, “to cause to become“, or “to come to pass“.

Yeah well, that is a bunch of gobbledygook, but as I pointed out, no Jew would ever consider G-d to be their Father. Even the thought was blasphemous! That was the biggest complaint with Jesus’ teachings, he really riled up the religious folks with that idea! Jesus caused a tremendous amount of anger from the temple leaders teaching even the idea that G-d could ever be that personal with mere humans!

But they must have read the words of the Psalmist, don’t you think?

O Yahweh, our Adonay, how majestic is your name throughout the earth!

Your glory is sung above the heavens.
From the mouths of little children and infants,
    you have built a fortress against your opponents
        to silence the enemy and the avenger

Well yeah, they could agree with all that . . . However, the Psalmist kept going:

When I look at your heavens,
    the creation of your fingers,
    the moon and the stars that you have set in place—
         what is a mortal that you remember him
            or the Son of Man that you take care of him?
        You have made him a little lower than yourself

“Huh? Wait a minute!” they would have said, “That doesn’t fit with our way of thinking!”

You have crowned him with glory and honor.
         You have made him rule what your hands created.
        You have put everything under his control:
             all the sheep and cattle, the wild animals,
             the birds, the fish,
            whatever swims in the currents of the seas.

 O Yahweh, our Adonay, how majestic is your name throughout the earth!

Oh, my! What are they going to do with that kind of talking?

Whoa. Then  Jesus introduced us to His Father and the Name they were so afraid of, becomes “Abba” — papa. Here the Jews were afraid to even whisper the divine name, but Jesus was teaching them to say, “Our Daddy in Heaven!” That blew their minds! The ruler of the galaxies suddenly became closer than their own thoughts! As one writer states, “The vast infinity of God is only a prayer’s length away!” Amazing!

The sole focus in our Lord’s prayer is our Father and He is suddenly and forever made real to us. It is in Him that all the needs of the world are opened up to us. In His Son Jesus, every groan, and each cry of our human condition come together. He experiences everything we suffer. Our Father is constantly present in every need. It doesn’t matter how great or tiny the need is — even those needs that are beneath our concern like when a sparrow falls. Amazing!

If this one prayer spans the whole world, it will certainly embrace our own families! Yet, frequently we are called to pray for unbelievers in other countries, people we have never met but yet, we overlook those who are unbelievers in our own families! Too often when a believer is anointed by the Spirit, they want to rush out and minister to the world. But in the meantime, the ministry in their own home is sadly neglected. There are national ministers, great spiritual leaders who minister to millions but bypass their own households. How sad is that?

The real test of our calling is among those who know us best. Our loved ones should be the first, not the last, we should be praying into the Kingdom!

Am I starting to hit too close to home? I’m sorry . . . actually, no I’m not. You need to hear this. You need to see where the focus of your prayers should be. Have you been crying for an outpouring over our nation? Good! But why don’t you start to focus praying for an outpouring in your own family first, then focus on those you have never met before.

Father, we are indeed praying that your Name would always be made Holy in our family. Let every part of our household join in the praises of angels and archangels and the whole company of heaven. Please continually remind us that we are the basic unit of those who are called by your Name. Join us together with your whole Church on Earth and in Heaven. Don’t allow anything we say or do to each other cause your Holy Name to be defamed or insulted.

Allow Your Name to remain Holy when we work, when when play, and when we worship. In the midst of the world, as each of us goes about our daily tasks, remind us that we as a family bear your Holy Name together. I pray that your Name would remain Holy in the church we attend.

Let all of those who rule over us in one way or another know that they must give an account to You. Remind our pastors, elders, bishops or anyone else in our churches to lead us and protect us and to teach us your Word.

May your Name remain Holy in the State and National Capitals. Let the Govenor, the President, and the legislatures always be aware that they are your ministers.

May Your Name remain Holy in all of the nations of the world and cause every knee to bow at the Holy Name of Jesus. Amen!

Doulos Studies

(I send out messages like this each morning in emails, and if you are interested in receiving them, send me your email address and I will add you—a to the list: Mail List)

I do thank you for your gifts. It is your faithful and continued support that makes these messages possible.

This entry was posted in A Life of Prayer, Daily Thoughts, Intercession. Bookmark the permalink.

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