You will find what most people call the Lords Prayer in Matthew Six. But I submit to you that the real Lord’s Prayer is in John 17. If you want to see the prayer and model that of the One Who knows how to pray, read the real Lord’s Prayer in John 17. This is where Jesus actually does pray to the Father and it is not just the template or cookie cutter prayer in Matthew Six, which is simply a pattern of how to pray. I am not saying that what is commonly called the Lord’s Prayer is not important, it is. It shows us exactly what to pray for and in what order to pray the different petitions to God. It is not one to be repeated necessarily. It reveals what our prayers should consist of. So here, in effect, is how to pray and how not to pray, in the hopes that your prayers will effective and glorify Who it is designed to glorify. Namely, God the Father.
Here’s How Not To Pray
First of all, here is not how to pray. Prayers effectiveness is not in its length but in its sincerity (Matt 6:7). It is not by using many words or timing prayers on a watch (Ish. 1:15). It is not like the religious elite of the day in doing it only for show and in the open public (Matt. 6: 1-2, 5, 6). Prayer’s effectiveness is destroyed by regarding sin (I Pet. 3:7/Matt 6:12). Imagine a child asking his father for something and the child is in willful disobedience. Do you think the father will feel like giving the child something when they are presently disobeying him? Not likely. Prayer is not more effective by long recitations or with vain repetitions (Matt. 6:7, 9). And the prayer in Matthew 6, called the Lord’s Prayer, is not meant to be used by vain repetitions either (Math6:7) because Jesus said pray in this manner, not pray after me or repeat after me. Certainly not over and over. Prayer is not a rote memorization of a reading. It is a plea, a petition, nearly a begging of God for His will to be done. Jesus said pray in this manner, not repeat this prayer over and over.
Jesus’ Prayer Template
The Lord’s Prayer of Matthew Six is a model of how to pray, not what to pray precisely. He begins with “Our Father, Who are in Heaven, Hallowed be Your Name”. This means that the first thing is that God’s Name be honored or revered. Jesus starts out His own earnest prayer to God (John 17) by first glorify God and thanking Him. Jesus’ first addressing God’s glory is how ours should start out as well. I typically fall on my face, prostrate, and in private when I pray, for I am humbles that a Mighty God would consider what man or woman is that so kind to us should He be to consider in the first place.
Next, Jesus prayed that God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven, which means that we should pray for what is known to be in God’s will. Just like His Name should be glorified, His will should be done on earth and in us, just as it is in Heaven. And “they kingdom come” means pray for His Kingdom to come, which today means praying for Jesus’ return to rule the earth where the whole world will fall under His Ruler Ship.
Only after praying for God’s glory and His will to be done, should we pray for our daily bread or our own personal physical needs. We should not put our needs at the beginning of our prayers, because first comes God’s glory and honor. Only then can we pray for us or family or friends. And our daily bread should consist, not only of real bread and water, but of the Bread of Life. This is Jesus for He is the Bread of Life. We don’t eat meals only on Sundays (i.e., at church) and starve the rest of the week do we? If we only take from the Bread of Life (the Bible), then we’ll spiritually starving to death the rest of the week. Jesus is the Word and the Word is Jesus (John 1:1-4). The Word ought to be our daily consummation.
Next is praying for our forgiveness, but not until we forgive others first. We can hinder our prayers if we hold grudges or can’t forgive someone else; then how can we expect God to forgive us?
Also, Jesus said we’re to ask for deliverance from temptations (which may also be in the form of trials) and from evil. Actually the original says deliver us from the Evil One (Satan).
Jesus model prayer in Matthew Six concludes the way it started. Jesus goes back to God’s glory. “For His is the kingdom, His is the power, and His is the glory. For how long? Forever. That means eternity. His name will be forever glorified.
Amen Jesus says, meaning, that if we say amen, this means “I agree”. That’s what it originally means. Saying amen is like saying, I agree or yes indeed!
Use Jesus’ name to gain access to the very throne of God. Jesus’ name is the most powerful name in the entire universe.
Here’s How ToPray
The Bible contains many verses to help hone our prayers effectiveness. How’s how your prayers can be heard. Prayers are heard if we are righteous (James 5:16). Prayers are effective if we are humble and of contrite spirit, meaning no pride (James 4:10). If they are in alignment with God’s revealed will (i.e., praying for the lost, praying for the ministry [I Tim. 2:1]) of which His will is knowable (Matt 6:10) your prayers will be heard. And praying for the sick definitely is His will (James 5:15). Prayers should be done in private if possible (Matt 6:4). Praying morning, noon and night, even while we are working or driving (Pslm 55:17). Sometimes we don’t even know what to pray for specifically or exactly how to word it, pray anyway, the Holy Spirit will know (I Cor. 14:15/Jude 20).
Remember that our prayers are like sweet, savory incense to God (Rev. 5:8). God must have loved the real Lord’s Prayer in John 17 prayed by Jesus. Read it and see why and see what Jesus actually prayed and not what model He provided for us and you’ll see His passion and sincerity. I want that type of prayer! Jesus chief concern was to always glorify God’s Name. Now that Jesus has ascended into heaven, when we pray, we ought to focus our prayers that they would glorify Jesus’ name. And pray in His name, for there is tremendous power in that Name above all Names. Pray in this way, and you will be heard. That is God’s will and so I can say with full assurance, that this, my prayer for you, will be answered. Absolutely.