Commands of Christ: 21

Pray like this…

“When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on street corners so that others may see them.  Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.  But when you pray, go to your inner room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.  In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words.  Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.  “This is how you are to pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.  Give us today our daily bread; and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; and do not subject us to temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. Matthew 6:5-13

He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread and forgive us our sins for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us, and do not subject us to temptation.” Luke 11:2-4

Jesus commanded us to pray.  Not any or every prayer will do.  There are ways we can pray that will not please Him.  We are to pray with right motives.  We are to pray thoughtfully.  We are to pray in ways that acknowledge God’s holiness and fatherhood, and in submission to His will and ways.  We are to pray for our needs and forgiveness and protection.  Jesus taught elsewhere about prayer as well.  Of course Jesus also modeled prayer.  Perhaps the most complete understanding of prayer is that it is our communication with God, both speaking and listening.  It is something we should be engaged in as a way of life, constantly aware of His presence and alert for His desires and will and purposes in every situation.