The Sunday News
Lord teach us to pray
Greetings beloved nation. We are coming to the end of our series on, ‘Teach us to pray’. As we are surrounded by what is happening in the world, it is time for the church to rise up and begin to pray rightful prayers as the disciples went to Jesus in the book of Luke 11:1 and 2 after they had seen Jesus praying and a lot happening such as Lazarus being raised from the dead, people with leprosy being healed through the prayers of Jesus, 5000 people being fed with five loaves and two fish after Jesus had lifted the bread and the fish up to God and gave thanks, disciples were observing all these things.
The bible says in the book of Luke 11:1, “One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of the disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples” (NIV). The disciples had a desire and a cry in their hearts to see their prayers being answered. We have seen how one of the disciples approached Jesus while he was praying wanting to be taught how to pray. Jesus was a man of prayer even though he was God. He depended so much on his father in prayer as the bible says that heaven and heavens belong to God and the earth, he has given it to the sons of man. Jesus realised that, when you are on earth God has given you dominion. The only way for you to see the supernatural happening is to be a man or woman that depends so much on God. There was a time when Jesus was teaching his disciples how to pray in the Lord’s prayer, he told them to ask for the kingdom of God to come and his will to be done on earth as it is done in heaven.
Ladies and gentlemen, as we are surrounded by what is happening in this world, prayer is a vehicle that God uses to bring healing to the nations of the world. We have seen in the bible that when Israel was surrounded by their enemies, they would pray and God would come to their rescue. This was the cry the disciples were having when they approached Jesus to teach them how to pray. They knew that sometimes you can pray and you can pray amiss as the bible says in the book of James. The disciples wanted to be taught how to pray rightful prayers because in the book of James 4:1-3 we see apostle James bringing order in the prayers of the saints and it was so with the disciples that they wanted to know how to pray rightful prayers to God so that their prayers will bring answers on earth. It is so frustrating to pray and our prayers are not answered. One of the reasons of praying is for our prayers to be answered because God promised us in the book of Psalms 65:2 that when we call unto him and pray, he is a God that answers prayer. In the book of James 4:3, apostle James says, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures” (NIV). These were the saints that were praying but when they were approaching God in their prayers, they were asking amiss. We can pray whilst these prayers will not be directed to God hence missing the target because of our attitude when we are praying. Remember in our part 2 we spoke about the attitude of the pharisees that when they were praying they wanted to please men, Jesus was telling the disciples not to pray like pharisees who loved to be seen by men, that was the wrong attitude in prayer and it made their prayers not to be answered.
We see the disciples asking their master Jesus to teach them how to pray and the good thing is that Jesus did not rebuke them. In this time that we are living in we need to know how to pray rightfully. There is a pattern and a manner in which we should pray orderly and rightful prayers that attract answers in our lives. We see in the bible in Luke 11:2 Jesus saying to the disciples, “when you pray, say: “Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come…” (NIV), Jesus did not rebuke the disciples but he was now teaching them how to pray rightfully, how to address the Father God and how to attract answers to their prayers. He said to them when you pray say ‘Our Father’, he now begins to address God as a Father, he did not address God as a servant or as an enemy. Jesus was bringing a sense of belonging that God is our Father and the word ‘father’ means a defender, a source and that is why Jesus taught them to pray and say ‘Our Father who art in heaven’. He was now addressing that our Father in heaven is different from our earthly fathers. He said when you are praying remember that he is your father and that he is in heaven. Speaking of Heaven, it means that He is above everything and by father he was addressing that he is our source, our defender and our preserver. Jesus was actually teaching his disciples that a father is a giver, so when you approach God approach him as a father, do not approach him as an enemy. Fathers are givers, they understand their children so much and they can do anything for their children because they are Fathers. Jesus was saying to his disciples when you approach God and call him Father, the word Father itself, speaks volumes. There is no father who does not want to provide for his children or protect them. Jesus was also saying approach God as sons not as his equals because one of the things that has disqualified many prayers to be answered is approaching God as our equal. In the book of Philippians 2:7-8, Jesus was God but he could not compare himself to God, he humbled himself even unto the point of death, he never put himself in the position of the father.
Fathers are givers, and God said I am your Father and whatsoever you need I am able to provide, I am able to give you good things because I am your father and I am in heaven. In the book of Mathew 7:11, the bible says, ‘If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him’ (NIV), Jesus was talking about earthly fathers that they know how to give good gifts to their children what more our father who is in heaven. Whatsoever we are going through let us learn to approach God as our father, he is our source, our giver, our defender and our preserver.
Jesus always addressed God as the father and that is why his prayers were answered, he would depend so much on his father, he was proud of his father because the bible says he gives good things to them that ask him. In the book of Psalms 27:10 David said, though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me’ (NIV), this was the manner Jesus taught his disciples to pray by addressing God as the father who gives. If you are a father and you are reading this and you are not taking care of your children, automatically you become an evil father because every good father knows how to provide for his children as our father in heaven, he is waiting for us to cry unto him in prayer, lets address him as a father. The bible says in the book of Hebrews 4:16, ‘let us the approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need’ (NIV). Let us cry to our father who is in heaven to heal the nations of the world and corona virus because we are his children, he will show us mercy as a father.
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