Prayer: Open my eyes, that I may behold wonderful things out of thy law (Psalm 119:18).
Readings: Matthew 6:5-18; Luke 11:1-13
Memory Verse: Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.
The prayer, called the Lord's prayer, was taught to His disciples by the Lord Jesus Christ. It has been used in all the centuries by countless Christians in hundreds of languages. It was first spoken in Aramaic, Jesus' language and then recorded in the gospels according to Matthew and Luke in Greek. The verse: "Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever" is not found in all the manuscripts and is therefore put in the notes of some translations. It is not found in Codex Alexandrinus and Codex Sinaiticus but it is found in W. (4th and 5th century) i.e. Washington, the Vulgate, and some Church Fathers use it. If there is not agreement concerning all the manuscripts it does not make all that difference to the teaching as our studies will show. The teaching of this verse and all our main beliefs depend on many verses and passages. The ideas of this verse are found elsewhere in scripture as our studies will show: "Thine is the kingdom" – this idea comes earlier in the prayer. Where and how is the word 'kingdom' used earlier in this prayer? The kingdom is God's and Christ's. A kingdom presupposes a king.
What Kind of King is the Lord Jesus Christ?
- King of History, the Lord of the ages
- King of the Nations now
- King of kings and Lord of lords (Revelation 19:16). King of the Jews (Matthew 2:2,5-6). He fulfilled the Old Testament prophecy found in the prophet (Micah 5:2). He came from the family of Abraham and the house of King David. He did not come in the way the Jews expected and so most of them rejected him. They had too small an idea of his kingship. On his crossthe inscription was'This is the king of the Jews' (Luke 23:38).The word for king is ‘malek’ in Hebrew and Arabic.The inscription on the cross was written in Hebrew, the language of religion, in Latin, the language of politics and of the Roman rulers and in Greek, the language of learning. He is king in all these three realms. In Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Colossians 2:3). He is king in the realms of science and learning.
- King of Glory
- He came from glory and returned to glory. Even his incarnation could not hide that glory entirely. For example, it was revealed at his birth when the shepherds saw his glory and at his transfiguration when Peter, James and John saw his glory (Luke 2:9; Mark 9:2-3).
What Kind of Kingdom Does He Have?
- A Spiritual Kingdom
- He says: "My kingdom is not of this world" (John 18:36). It is a kingdom which can only be entered by spiritual birth (John 3:3).
- An Eternal Kingdom
- A Universal Kingdom
- People of all nations, all tribes, languages, classes, rich and poor, belong to this kingdom (Revelation 5:9-10).
What Kind of Subjects are You?
A king has subjects. He rules over people. His subjects can be divided into three kinds.
- All of us are born rebels (Psalm 5:10). We are born in a state of sin therefore we commit acts of sin (Psalm 51:5). We need to take God's remedy or medicine, none of our own is strong enough. We are reconciled to God by Christ's death for us, not by our own efforts and good deeds (2 Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 2:8-9).Nicodemus, although he was a religious and moral man, was still a rebel and needed to be born again so that he could enter the kingdom of God (John 3:1-15).
- Half-hearted and Lukewarm
- No man can serve two kings. We often try to serve self and Christ (Matthew 6:24; Luke 9:23; Revelation 3:15-16). Let us test ourselves. Are we thrilled by thepresence of and authority of our king? Do we consciously enjoy his presence through worship, daily prayer and Bible study? Do we rejoice in his authority over the materialism, communism and other religions of our time? Do we have joy in our hearts despite the difficulties around us? How wonderful to be a king's representative and ambassador and to share his riches personally and publicly. We are kings because he is king and he has made us kings (Revelation 1:6).
- If we are obedient subjects we know the blessings of obedience. If we are disobedient, we do not always know what we miss. He is king and we should let him rule over us, he will use us and make us fruitful in his service. Christ seeks to win rebels, to restore the half-hearted and to receive the worship of obedient subjects.
Subjects for Praise and Prayer to our King
- Praise Jesus our king for himself, for his kingdom and for the privilege of being his subjects.
- Pray for kings, rulers and those in authority.