Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Reflections On The Lord's Prayer




“In Luke it is recorded that one of His disciples asked Jesus, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples” (Luke 11:1). Jesus then gave a pattern for prayer that has become known as the Lord’s Prayer. The same is recorded in Matthew as part of the Sermon on the Mount (see Matthew 6:9–13)” (D. Todd Christofferson,  “Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread,” CES Fireside for Young Adults, January 9, 2011.)

I have elected to use the version of the Lord’s prayer that is recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, as it appears in its most complete and most recognizable form in the Sermon on the Mount.  I have arranged the Lord’s prayer verse by verse in the order that it is presented in Matthew, and I have included my own commentary, along with selected quotes and scriptures that I have arranged so as to explicate each passage.  My comments are in red, and scriptures are in italics.

The Lord's Prayer is possibly one of the most famous and beloved passages of scripture in all of Christendom, and rightly so.  In it we have recorded for us the sweet and simple teachings of the Savior concerning the correct way to approach God in humble supplication.  Some faiths have enshrined this example of prayer as a prayer to be recited verbatim in worship as well as in personal devotion.  While I disagree that this was the Savior's intent in his teachings concerning prayer, I do believe that each of us might benefit greatly if we were to pause and weigh this prayer with greater consideration than we have typically done in the past.  The Lord's Prayer does not always receive the attention that it deserves, and I believe that the words of instruction and inspiration contained in this brief prayer merit deeper reflection, pondering, and meditation, to the end that we might more fully incorporate these teachings into our own prayers, and in our own lives.

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