Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Lord's Prayer as Answers to the Lord's Questions

From J. I. Packer's Praying the Lord's Prayer:
We need to see that the Lord's Pray is offering us model answers to the series of questions God puts to us to shape our conversation with him. Thus:

What do you take me for, and what am I to you?

Our Father in heaven.

That being so, what is it that you really want most?

The hallowing of your name; the coming of your kingdom; to see your will known and done.

So what are you asking for right now, as a means to that end?

Provision, pardon, protection.

How can you be so bold and confident in asking for these things?

Because we know you can do it, and when you do it, it will bring you glory!
By the way, Packer also writes:
Three venerable formulae together add up to Christianity: the Apostle's Creed, the Ten Commandments, and the Lord's Prayer, summarizing respectively the Christian way of believing, behaving, and communing with God.
Toward that end he's written three short studies: Affirming the Apostle's Creed, Keeping the Ten Commandments, and Praying the Lord's Prayer. I'd highly recommend all three. You can also find these studies in one volume: Growing in Christ.