Matthew 6:9-13—LET’S READ THIS TOGETHER
This, then, is how you should pray:
“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,[a]
but deliver us from the evil one.[b]’
Robert Russell tells this story:
There is a huge rivalry in college basketball between the University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky. The story is told that at one of the games between the two schools, an elderly woman was sitting alone with an empty seat next to her. Someone approached her and said, “Ma’am, I have rarely seen an empty seat in Rupp Arena, let alone at a game between these two teams. Whose seat is this?”
The woman responded that she and her late husband had been season-ticket holders for 28 years, and the seat had belonged to him.
“Well, couldn’t you find a friend or relative to come to the game with you?” the observer asked.
“Are you kidding?” she replied. “They’re all at my husband’s funeral.”
Citation: Robert Russell, May All Who Come Behind Us Find Us Faithful; submitted by Jeff Allen, Flora, Illinois
Men, no one can take your “seat.” You are irreplaceable.
Today we are going to study the Lord’s Prayer. It is a simple, concise prayer in contrast to the long, liturgical prayers of the Jews.
Jesus is giving His disciples a prayer that He knows God will answer. This is the model prayer and Jesus is showing that God the Father is the model father.
Today we are going to study the model Father. Of course God is perfect and without error but the Bible refers to God as Father and we see illustrations of that throughout the Bible. He is the ultimate model for us this Father’s Day.
The word for father in the Greek language, the original language of the New Testament, is pater. Pater, root word pa, translates into English with three words, “nourisher,” “protector,” and “upholder.”
I. He is approachable to His family–v9
He is approachable—simply—Abba Father—Daddy—baby terminology
The God of the universe—spoke and created the universe is the same one that Jesus is calling us to address simply as Daddy.
He is approachable but at the same time He is worthy of praise.
“Hallow be thy name”
In OLD TESTAMENT, Yahweh was unspeakable.
Holy of Holies—tied bells on the high priest who went into the holy of holies once a year.
Isaiah 6—Isaiah fell to the ground and describes the hem of His robe
John—Revelation—fell down like a dead man.
Because of Jesus, God the Father is approachable.
Abraham Lincoln’s son Tad—soldier. President’s son took the soldier directly to the President because of Tad’s relationship with his Dad.
Too many fathers keep their love out of reach. They make their love conditional—if you meet my expectations, then I will love you. They do not express their love to them. They do not tell them how much they love them.
Too many dads think they are TOO IMPORTANT to be bothered.
DAD & HIS AVAILABILITY—my Dad ALWAYS takes our calls regardless of who he is with or what he is doing.
APPL—Heavenly Father is approachable to us all through Christ. We all need a father and those who are fathers, we can copy Him.
II. He nourishes His family–v10-11
What does it mean to be a nourisher? A nourisher is a person who supplies whatever is necessary for maintaining life. This would mean everything materially, emotionally, and spiritually.
- A. Spiritual–v10—God’s Will is always for our best—Romans 12:2–His perfect and pleasing will. Proverbs 3:5-8
The prayer looks for the perfect accomplishment of what God wills.
MOM & NEVER MISS A MEAL
WE WOULD NEVER DARE STARVE OUR CHILDREN BUT TOO OFTEN WE STARVE THEM SPIRITUALLY.
ARE YOU FEEDING YOUR CHILD’S SOUL?
2 TIM 3:14-15—FEEDING THEM GOD’S ETERNAL WORD
LEAVE HEIRLOOMS, IRREPLACEABLE ITEMS—Only what we give them spiritually we last forever.
NOT WEEKLY BREAD & NOT MONTHLY BREAD BUT DAILY.
Jesus takes serious our physical needs.
DAILY BREAD—OUR DEPENDENCE IS UPON THE LORD
ESTABLISH AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE—FOOD IS FROM GOD—I MAY FAIL YOU.
SAME ATTITUDE AS MY DOG–dog expects to the fed.
- C. Emotional–Eph 6:4–power of presence. “lose heart”—presence changes that.
Studies say children with involved fathers are:
More confident and less anxious in unfamiliar settings.
Better able to deal with frustration.
Better able to gain a sense of independence.
More likely to become compassionate adults.
More likely to have higher self-esteem.
More likely to have higher grade-point averages.
Citation: Keith Simmons, “USA Today Snapshots,” USA Today (June 14-16, 2002); source: NationalCenter for Fathering
Have you ever heard of Brooks Adams? His father was the Ambassador to Great Britain under Abraham Lincoln. Brooks recalled, “The best day of my life when I was growing up was that day when my dad took me fishing. I remember that we talked & spent time together.” Time & time again Brooks recalled that wonderful day when he & his father went fishing.
Years later, a historian was going through Ambassador Adams’ papers & found the dairy in which that day was mentioned. Brooks’ father had written, “Went fishing today with my son. The day was wasted.”
I wonder how many wasted days have come & gone that were monumental days in the lives of our children, & we never knew? I wonder how many things we were going to do but never got around to doing, that might have changed a life & molded a personality?
III. He protects His family–v13
What does it mean to be a protector? A protector is one who defends and guards one from attack, loss, annoyance, and insult.
- Delivers from evil–v13—He releases us from our sins—forgives us. Colossians 1—rescues us from domain of darkness.
2 Thess. 3:3 — But the Master never lets us down. He’ll stick by you and protect you from evil.
Put road blocks in our child’s life—just like heavenly father—disciples us for our own good.
The planet Jupiter “is our first line of defense” says Allan Boss, an astrophysicist at the Carnegie Institution of Washington. “It is something like 99.9 percent efficient at throwing dangerous space junk, asteroids, and meteorites back out to interstellar space.”
How does that happen?
Jupiter is 318 times heavier than earth. Because of its mass, Jupiter creates a huge gravitational field that acts as a giant cosmic vacuum cleaner, drawing the “junk” that floats into the gravitational field toward it and away from other planets.
Considering Jupiter’s protective role, the ancient Romans unknowingly named the mighty planet well. In Old Latin, Jupiter means “Sky-Father.
¨ A Canadian study found that a father was essential for a woman to develop a sense of adequacy, self-esteem, life goals, and even feminine identification.
¨ Ironically, it takes a strong father to give a woman a high view of femininity.
¨ Kids—especially daughters—get a sense from their fathers that they’re worth being loved.
B. Upholds–Psalm 23:6—A Mighty Fortress is Our God.
GOD IS A MIGHTY ROCK—IMMOVABLE.
DAN HARPER—DEEP KEEL — prevented his sailboat from flipping in choppy waves.
Dads—look at this model of fatherhood. Take notes. To everyone, realize that God is your Father and He does want your communion and He does take care of you.
Family looks to father to be the stabilizing force in a family. We know that EARTHLY FATHERS MAY FAIL BUT THEY NEED TO STRAP THEMSELVES TO THE ETERNAL ROCK. POINT THEIR FAMILY TO HIM AND HIS PROVISIONS.
INDIAN BOY—LASTING INVESTMENT IN CHILD—HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD.—Story by Leonard Sweet
One tribe of native Americans had a unique practice for training young braves. On the night of a boy’s thirteenth birthday, he was placed in a dense forest to spend the entire night alone. Until then he had never been away from the security of his family and tribe. But on this night he was blindfolded and taken miles away. When he took off the blindfold, he was in the middle of thick woods. By himself. All night long.
Every time a twig snapped, he probably visualized a wild animal ready to pounce. Every time an animal howled, he imagined a wolf leaping out of the darkness. Every time the wind blew, he wondered what more sinister sound it masked. No doubt it was a terrifying night for many.
After what seemed like an eternity, the first rays of sunlight entered the interior of the forest. Looking around, the boy saw flowers, trees, and the outline of the path. Then, to his utter astonishment, he beheld the figure of a man standing just a few feet away, armed with a bow and arrow. It was the boy’s father. He had been there all night long.
Can you think of any better way for a child to learn how God allows us to face the tests of life? God is always present with us. God’s presence is unseen, but it is more real than life itself.