We have been looking at the prayers of the Lord Jesus and at His examples of prayer. He also taught on prayer, Luke 11:1-4. It’s significant that this teaching came as the Lord was praying as Luke records it, which caused the disciples to want to pray as He did. Prayer is not perhaps an easy thing to learn to do in an effective manner. So the Lord undertakes to teach His own how to pray.
It’s often the case that we struggle to pray and are perhaps unhappy with our prayer lives. Prayer is a strictly spiritual enterprise. It doesn’t matter if you’re smart or dumb, rich or poor, young or old – those are all insignificant in coming to God in prayer. The believer comes to God only through the Lord Jesus Christ and from that relationship comes prayer. Romans 8:15, the believer cries out to God from the Holy Spirit living within. These two factors must be in evidence for there to be prayer.
The impediments to prayer are huge – the world crowds in on us, the devil seeks to distract us. Thus the Lord Jesus commands that we pray against temptation.
The content of what is called the Lord’s Prayer further teaches:
- We are coming to the person of God Himself as our Father. This ought to bring us to the end of ourselves, into a place of humility. Reverence is a basic component to prayer. The fact that we are brought by Christ and enabled by the Holy Spirit keeps us going on. The believer cannot call God Father without real faith and real trust as a child.
- Prayer is not just a list of requests, but thanksgiving for the relationship. The God who supplies the believer’s needs on a daily basis, the God of the universe, must be approached with praise and thanksgiving.
- It is only His will that will be accomplished in this world and the believer comes to Him in willingness to do that will.
Most of all we must come to the Lord as the disciples did and ask Him to teach us to pray. This is a prayer that He will answer readily.