In the last blog we covered the second part of The Lord’s Prayer, this finalises the study. The Lord’s Prayer – Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. Matt 6:9. The Lord’s Prayer – the conclusion.
And of His Kingdom there shall be no end And of His Kingdom There shall be no end; The Word of God On which we can depend. Shines forth, In a world of gloom To the heart that for Him Makes room. A continuous sense of half successes and total failures Are the sum of man’s expressions Prosperity existing for a time Only to be followed by war and depression Twenty six civilisations have come and gone Such is the history of men Yet man still battles with the same problems Over and over again. The fluctuations of time, The swinging of the pendulum from war to peace From starvation to plenty, from chaos to order All this will one day cease. But the Kingdom of God will abide forever. On this we can depend. The joy of this truth floods our being “And of His Kingdom there shall be no end”. By the late Andrew Feakin (passed away 16th March 2019)
God gives and saves like a king
Henry says – The conclusion: For Yours is the Kingdom, and the power and the glory, forever. Amen. Some refer this to David’s doxology, (1 Chron. 29:11 Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendour, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, LORD, is the Kingdom; You are exalted as head over all).
This is a plea to enforce the previous petitions. It is our duty to plead with God in prayer, to fill our mouth with arguments, (Job 23:4 I state my case before Him and fill my mouth with arguments). Not to move God, but to encourage our faith and excite our fervency. The best pleas in prayer are those that are wrestled for.
The plea here has special reference to the first three petitions; “Father in heaven, Your kingdom come, for Yours is the Kingdom, Your will be done, for Yours is the power, hallowed be Your name, for Yours is the glory.” And as to our own particular assignments, these are encouraging: “Yours is the Kingdom. You have the government of the world, and the protection of the saints who are Your willing subjects in it.” God gives and saves like a king. “Yours is the power, to maintain and support that Kingdom, and to make good all Your engagements to Your people.” Yours is the glory, as the ultimate end of all that is given and done for the believers, in answer to their prayers. This is matter of comfort and confidence in prayer.
He is praised by a world of angels
The best pleadings with God is in the praising of Him. It is the way to obtain further mercy, as it qualifies us to receive it. In all our addresses to God, it is fitting that praise should have a considerable share. We praise God, and give Him glory, not because He needs it—He is praised by a world of angels. But because He deserves it and it is our duty to give Him glory, in compliance with His design in revealing Himself to us.
Praise is the work and happiness of heaven and all who would go to heaven hereafter, must begin their heaven now. Observe how full this doxology is, The Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, it is all Yours. It becomes us to be bountiful in praising God. A true believer never thinks he can speak honourably enough of God. In this there should be a gracious fluency, and this is forever. Ascribing glory to God forever, it is eternally due, and an earnest desire to be eternally doing it, with angels and saints above, (Ps. 71:14 As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise You more and more).
Lastly to all this we are taught to end with Amen, so be it. God’s Amen is granted. It is ‘His shall be so’. Our Amen is only a ‘let it be so’. It is in the token of our desire and assurance to be heard that we say Amen. Amen refers to every petition gone before, and so we are taught to knit up the whole in one word. In so doing we gather up what we has been amiss. It is good to conclude with some warmth and vigour that we may go from them with a sweet savour upon our spirits.
Our selfish nature is loathed to comply with this
It was the practice of people to say, Amen, audibly at the end of every prayer. It is a commendable practice, provided it be done with understanding and liveliness. Most of the petitions in the Lord’s prayer had been commonly used by the Jews in their devotions except ‘as we forgive our debtors’. This was very new, and therefore our Saviour here shows for what reason He added it. From its necessity and importance.
God, in forgiving us, has a particular interest in our forgiving those who have injured us. Therefore, when we pray for pardon, we must remind ourselves of that duty. See that parable, Matt. 18:23-25. Our selfish nature is loathed to comply with this, and therefore it is here imparted, (Matt. 6:14, 15 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins).
It is promised that if we forgive, our heavenly Father will also forgive us. Not as if this were the only condition required. There must be repentance and faith, and new obedience. This will be a good evidence of the sincerity of our other qualities. He who relents toward his brother shows that he repents toward his God. That which in the prayer are called debts, are here called trespasses, which are debts of injury, wrongs done to us in our bodies, goods, or reputation.
We must be ready to help him and do him good
We must forgive, as we hope to be forgiven and therefore must not only bear no malice, nor seek revenge, but must not chastise our brother for the injuries he has done us. Nor must we rejoice in any hurt that befalls him. But we must be ready to help him and do him good, and if he repents and desire to be friends again, we must be as familiar with him as before.
‘But if you do not forgive those who have injured you’, that is a bad sign that you do not have the other essential conditions and are unqualified for pardon. Therefore your Father, whom you call Father, and who, as a father, offers you His grace upon reasonable terms, will not forgive you.
Christ came into the world as the great Peace-Maker
If you be defective in forgiving, you cannot expect the comfort of your pardon, but to have your spirit brought down by some affliction or other to comply with this duty. Those who have found mercy with God must show mercy to their brethren. None can expect that He will stretch out the hands of His favour to us, unless we lift up to Him pure hands, without wrath, (1 Tim. 2:8 Therefore I want the men everywhere to pray, lifting up holy hands without anger or disputing).
If we pray in anger, we have reason to fear God will answer in anger. What reason is it that God should forgive us the great debts we owe to Him, if we do not forgive our brethren the penny debts that are indebted to us? Christ came into the world as the great Peace-Maker, not only to reconcile us to God, but to one to another. In this we must comply with Him. It is a great presumption and of dangerous consequence, for any to make a light matter of that which Christ here lays such a stress upon. Men’s passions shall not frustrate God’s word.
Adapted from the Matthew Henry Commentary
Prayer for the Day
Father I come to You. I declare that Yours is the Kingdom, the power and the glory, forever. May I fill my mouth with arguments and state my case before You. Let my faith be encouraged and my fervency for You be excited. Compel me to be willing to wrestle with You in prayer.
Let Your kingdom come and Your will be done. Thank You that You maintain and support me. Let the ultimate end of all that is given and done for me be to Your glory. Cause my prayers to be filled with praise of You. For You alone deserve it. Thank You for revealing Yourself to me. Let my life ascribe glory to You and may I always have hope and praise You more and more.
May I always be willing to forgive others, as I hope to be forgiven. Let me never bear any malice, or seek revenge. But may I be ready to help them and do them good, and if he repents and desire to be friends again, give me the grace to be as familiar with them as before. In the name of Christ I pray. Amen.