June 22, 2017
Jesus said to his disciples: “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.” Mt_6:7-15
Jesus continued, telling them exactly how to pray. We call His prayer “The Lord’s Prayer” or the “Our Father.” And there are seven petitions to God described within it.
After we have placed ourselves in the presence of God our Father to adore and to love and to bless him, the Spirit of adoption stirs up in our hearts seven petitions, seven blessings. The first three, more theological, draw us toward the glory of the Father; the last four, as ways toward him, commend our wretchedness to his grace. “Deep calls to deep.” CCC 2803
1 Hallowed be Thy Name – We recognize the holiness of God and give Him all the Glory, both now and forever!
2 Thy Kingdom come – The Kingdom of God has been coming since the Last Supper and, in the Eucharist, it is in our midst. The kingdom will come in glory when Christ hands it over to his Father: CCC 2816
3 Thy will be done – Our Father “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”95 He “is forbearing toward you, not wishing that any should perish.”96 His commandment is “that you love one another; even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”97 This commandment summarizes all the others and expresses his entire will. CCC 2822
4 Give us this day our daily bread – Feed us O God, every day with food for nourishment and the Spiritual food that is the Word of God – Jesus!
5 Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us – Forgiveness is a two-way street. If we never forgive anyone, if we think we’re so perfect to never trespass against others, how would we expect anyone to ever forgive us. And yet if we forgive and it’s not accepted or their trespass against us continues – Peter asked how many times do we forgive – Jesus said FOREVER!
6 Lead us not into temptation – We ask God not to allow us to take the way that leads to sin. We are engaged in the battle “between flesh and spirit”; this petition implores the Spirit of discernment and strength. CCC 2846
7 But deliver us from evil – In this petition, evil is not an abstraction, but refers to a person, Satan, the Evil One, the angel who opposes God. The devil (dia-bolos) is the one who “throws himself across” God’s plan and his work of salvation accomplished in Christ. CCC 2851
Seven points recognizing our weaknesses and God’s Holiness and desire to help us – if we just let Him!
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