The Art of Intercession (Manifest Your Will On Earth as it is in heaven 2)

No, I’ve haven’t finished looking at our King’s will being manifested in our lives. Oh, that reminds me. In case you are wondering what translation I am using, it is The Voice. I did this for a reason. Too many times we become so used to reading familiar texts and as a result, we tend to skip over them. I wanted you to have a new and fresh look at the Lord’s Prayer, hence, I used a translation most of you have never read, or if you have, I am sure it has not been on a regular basis.

I also hope you are receiving something rewarding from the last few messages and weren’t simply bored reading them. My hope is that the messages have been encouraging you, but more importantly, forcing you to take a new look at your faith and relationship to our Father.

Our Father in heaven,
        let Your name remain holy.
Bring about Your kingdom.
    Manifest Your will here on earth,
        as it is manifest in heaven — (Matthew 6:9-10)

Now, regarding the prayer Jesus taught us to pray, I see three things that bind the whole prayer together. First, that Yahweh is the Father of all Christians and that He is in Heaven. Simple enough. But the third statement kind of rounds it all off by saying that in Heaven His will is always fulfilled. The first proclaims His goodness in redeeming us through the Cross and taking us into His family. That is quite an honor on our part. The next two declare His greatness and power to achieve His purposes. When you put them together, they point to our hope. As our Father, Yahweh pledges to love us and do good for us for eternity!

Think about it. As Lord of creation, ruling in heaven, absolutely free from any of the limitations of, as Dr. Emit Brown in Back to the Future taught us,  the space-time continuum that we face, He can be relied on to fulfill whatever He intends to do — and do it perfectly! Now, you and I are apt to fail in the things we do, however simple, but Yahweh’s glory is to succeed in whatever He sets Himself to do, however hard it is. So

The work which his mercy began
the arm of his strength will complete;
His promise is yea and amen,
And never was forfeited yet.
Things future, nor things that are now
Not all things below or above,
Can make him his purpose forego,
Nor sever my soul from his love
~Author Unknown

But I’ll tell you what, when Jesus tells us that in heaven his Father’s will is done, he is not talking about his Father’s transcendence over a community of created beings living closer to Him and enjoying more of him than we can while living in these Earthly suits, and serving him with an ecstatic wholeheartedness that we can never attain while living here. This is “heaven” the way we imagine it to be, the “heaven” that Christian “go” to when they die, the state of life that we are currently preparing and training for.

In this sense, Heaven is infinitely more important than the life we are living now. Wouldn’t you agree? Not just because it is “eternal,” while the life we are living now is temporary, but also because none of the relationships we have here, with our current limitations, are perfectly enjoyed as they will be in the “hereafter.” Simply from the fact that the Holy Trinity is the ultimate reality, we learn that relationships are what life is really all about, and relationships with Father, Son, and all of the saints, are certainly what heaven is all about! What we need to grasp is that heaven, and eternity itself, will be an experience of togetherness, closer and more joyous than we have ever known.

In C.S. Lewis’ book, The Great Divorce, he pictures hell as a country where people are always scattering to get as far from each other as they can! But on the other side of things, in No Exist, Satre pictures hell as other people you can never get away from, however “hellishly” they behave! That would be hell! Ah, but in heaven the saints will be close to each other, as well as to the Father and the Son — and glad to be together; and the intimacy and closeness will add to the joy!

Scripture is clearly “otherworldly,” and insisting that the life of heaven is better and more glorious than life on earth at every point. Ooh, however, when you start asking how, Scripture, in essence, says “Wait and see; and realize that it so far beyond your current experience that there is no way you can conceive it.”

We need to understand that heaven, being a reality that is not bounded by space and time as we know them, is not located in, nor can be defined by our current limitations. I know I keep repeating myself, but our finite minds just go “tilt,” every time we begin to discuss it. All we are sure of is that for those who exist in heaven it is a state of perfect communion with our Father, and with others in Him, and there is complete contentment in His presence! In other words, don’t consider eternity as just being a long-long time, but a time and place of perfection. Perfect joy. Perfect peace. Perfect love. And, perfect intimacy!

However, and this is key, if there is going to be perfect communion, not only must Yahweh give without limit or restraint; and his servants, angelic and human, must respond without reservation — which means that in and through them, God’s will is fully fulfilled! That is what we are training for.

So, the doing of God’s will is part of the definition of heaven, and it is part of heaven’s glory that our God gives those who are there, the full ability to do it!

Now, have you ever wondered why Jesus followed “Manifest Your will here on earth” with “as it is manifest in heaven“? Well first, I may be just shooting off the cuff, but I think he was trying to stir up some hope in us. I mean, just look around and you will see that the chaos surrounding us is mocking this request. It is a relentless sarcastic taunt against our basic trust in Him. However, it is also reminding us that our God has already established His will perfectly in Heaven, so it should be easy for it to be established here on earth. This is why Jesus stirs us to hope that on Earth we can see great things. As the angels asked Abraham, “Is anything too hard for Yahweh?” (Genesis 18:14).

But that’s not all of it. Jesus was attempting to awaken a spirit of praise in us. I have heard it rightfully said that “petition exhausts while praise invigorates.” For Jesus to toss in a moment of praise during a time of making our requests, is the spiritual equivalent of refreshment at half-time! Where the strength for the battle of intercession is renewed! Jesus was teaching us the important lesson that praising energizes and renews praying. As Jesus often stated: “Whoever has ears, hear.”

Doulos Studies

(I send out messages like this each morning in emails, and a 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, Intimate Communion. Bookmark the permalink.

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