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Sermon July 24 2022

Pentecost 7 C 2022 The Lord’s Prayer

Luke 11:1-13


Grace to you and peace, from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen. 

Imagine Warren Buffet teaching you how to pick stocks.  Imagine Joe DiMaggio teaching you how to hit a curve ball.  Imagine Winston Churchill teaching you how to make a speech.  Imagine Jesus teaching you how to pray. 

Wait a minute.  You don’t have to imagine it.  In our Gospel text today, Jesus teaches us how to pray.  Jesus said to His disciples “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name.  Your kingdom come.  Give us each day our daily bread.  And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us.  And do not bring us to the time of trial.” 

That’s it.  The words Jesus gave to us to use when we pray are short and simple.  Jesus taught his disciples that it is not how many words that we put together, or how loudly we pray, or how long we pray that is important.  No, what is important is that we trust that God will hear our prayer and believe with all our hearts and minds that God knows better than we do what we need to live in His Good Creation.

And so, to help us with our prayer lives, this morning we are going to review the Small Catechism chapter on “The Lord’s Prayer” in responsive form and hear again in plain and simple words how Jesus instructed us to pray.


P: Our Father in heaven

What does this mean?

C: With these words God tenderly invites us to believe that he is our true Father and that we are his true children, so that we may pray to him as boldly and confidently as dear children ask their dear father.


P: Hallowed be your name

What does this mean?

C: God's name is certainly holy by itself, but we pray in this petition that we too may keep it holy.

P: How is God's name kept holy?

C: God's name is kept holy when his Word is taught in its truth and purity, and we as children of God lead holy lives according to it. Help us to do this, dear Father in heaven! But whoever teaches and lives contrary to God's Word dishonors God's name among us. Keep us from doing this, dear Father in heaven! 


P: Your kingdom come.

What does this mean?

C: God's kingdom certainly comes by itself even without our prayer, but we pray in this petition that it may also come to us.

P: How does God's kingdom come?

C: God's kingdom comes when our heavenly Father gives his Holy Spirit, so that by his grace we believe his holy Word and lead a godly life now on earth and forever in heaven.


P: Your will be done on earth as in heaven.

What does this mean?

C: God's good and gracious will certainly is done without our prayer, but we pray in this petition that it may be done among us also.

P: How is God's will done?

C: God's will is done when he breaks and defeats every evil plan and purpose of the devil, the world, and our sinful flesh, which try to prevent us from keeping God's name holy and letting his kingdom come. And God's will is done when he strengthens and keeps us firm in his Word and in the faith as long as we live. This is his good and gracious will. 


P: Give us today our daily bread.

What does this mean?

C: God surely gives daily bread without our asking, even to all the wicked, but we pray in this petition that he would lead us to realize this and to receive our daily bread with thanksgiving.

P: What, then, is meant by daily bread?

C: Daily bread includes everything that we need for our bodily welfare, such as food and drink, clothing and shoes, house and home, land and cattle, money and goods, a godly spouse, godly children, godly workers, godly and faithful leaders, good government, good weather, peace and order, health, a good name, good friends, faithful neighbors, and the like.


P: Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against US.

What does this mean?

C: We pray in this petition that our Father in heaven would not look upon our sins or because of them deny our prayers; for we are worthy of none of the things for which we ask, neither have we deserved them, but we ask that he would give them all to us by grace; for we daily sin much and surely deserve nothing but punishment.  So we too will forgive from the heart and gladly do good to those who sin against us. 


P: Lead us not into temptation.

What does this mean?

C: God surely tempts no one to sin, but we pray in this petition that God would guard and keep us, so that the devil, the world, and our flesh may not deceive us or lead us into false belief, despair, and other great and shameful sins; and though we are tempted by them, we pray that we may overcome and win the victory.


P: But deliver us from evil.

What does this mean?

C: In conclusion we pray in this petition that our Father in heaven would deliver us from every evil that threatens body and soul, property and reputation, and finally when our last hour comes, grant us a blessed end and graciously take us from this world of sorrow to himself in heaven.


P: For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.

What does this mean?

C: We can be sure that these petitions are acceptable to our Father in heaven and are heard by him, for he himself has commanded us to pray in this way and has promised to hear us. Therefore we say, "Amen," "Yes, it shall be so."


As you can see, Luther’s understanding of each petition, not only helps us in our prayer life, but provides great aid. From the introduction to the conclusion, we see that God is our true Father whose name is holy.  We ask in the Lord’s Prayer that God will give us His spirit, and that His will be done so that the evil plans of the devil, world, and our sinful nature will be hindered.    

        And so, when you are struggling for words to pray, pray this prayer. When you feel like you are babbling in your prayer, pray this prayer. When you want to guide others into prayer, pray this prayer! 

And the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Amen. 

Let us pray: O God, you encourage us to believe that you are truly our Father and that we are your children.  Help us to pray to you with complete confidence just as children speak to their loving father, through Jesus Christ, your only begotten Son, our Lord.  Amen.