God asks us to trust Him for all our needs. He alone brings forgiveness of sins to us. We respond by forgiving others, even when they don’t deserve it or ask for it.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Read Exodus 16:4-5
Underline: the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day
Margin: Daily Bread
Read Psalm 145:15-16
Underline: you give them their food … You open your hand
Margin: God provides.
Read Matthew 5:45
Underline: For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
Margin: God provides for all people.
Read 1 John 3:17-18
Underline: let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
Margin: We provide for others.
God calls us to trust Him alone to meet our needs. The phrase “daily bread” represents all the things we need to survive (including food, shelter, clothing, and more). While God physically provided bread daily for His people in Exodus 16, we understand this to mean a daily trusting—God is not forbidding us to plan ahead and prepare for the future, but rather to remember that even our best plans are dependent upon Him. So while we plan ahead, we remember to focus on God as our source of supply, not our own plan. In addition, God provides for all people, not just Christians, but He calls on Christians to also provide for others as we love them “with actions and in truth” according to 1 John 3.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Read Psalm 51:1-2
Underline: Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.
Margin: God forgives.
Read Matthew 18:21-22
Underline: “how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times.”
Margin: We forgive because God forgave us.
Read Matthew 6:14-15
Underline: but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Margin: To receive is to give.
Jesus paid the ultimate price by dying on the cross so we could be forgiven. He alone is able to forgive our sins, so we ask Him here to do as He promised. However, we also ask Him to help us forgive others. Because God has first forgiven us, we are able—and should be willing—to forgive others. If we are unwilling to forgive others, then God will not forgive us.
God’s Kingdom will reign on earth no matter what we do, but we ask Him to use us to make it happen. We also pray that He would send His Word and the Holy Spirit to help us believe in Jesus.
Your Kingdom Come
Read Romans 14:17
Underline: the kingdom of God is … righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit
Margin: Send me your Spirit, Lord.
Read 1 Peter 2:12
Underline: Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that … they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.
Margin: Send me in your Spirit, Lord.
Read Isaiah 55:11
Underline:my word … shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
Margin: God’s kingdom will come
God does not need our help making His kingdom come. In fact, it will come whether we help it along, fight it every step of the way, or do nothing. But we pray that God would send His Holy Spirit to rule in our hearts and establish His kingdom there first. But we also pray that He would use us to bring His kingdom about, as we are sent out in the Holy Spirit to live lives that point to the saving love of Jesus. When we aren’t sure if we’re being effective, we remain encouraged.
Your Will Be Done
Read John 6:40
Underline: For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life
Margin: God wants to save me.
Read 1 Timothy 2:4
Underline: who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Margin: God wants to save everyone.
Read Romans 16:20
Underline: The God of peace will soon crush Satan
Margin: God’s Will frustrates Satan.
God’s desire for you is that you would know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. He created you and He’s crazy in love with you. He doesn’t want you to go to hell, but to instead spend eternity with Him in heaven. Not only that, but He wants all people to be saved. Here we pray that God’s desire would come true for all people: that they would accept Jesus as Lord. God’s will also “frustrates” the plans of Satan. Satan carefully lays plans to lead us away from Jesus, but God disrupts that plan with His Word, bringing hope and life to His people where Satan would send despair and death. Ultimately, God will defeat Satan once and for all, casting him into the fiery pit of hell.
God, our loving Father, is the sole recipient of our worship and prayers. We are to keep His Name holy.
Overview of Prayer
Read Revelation 22:8-9
Underline: Worship God.
Write: Pray to God alone
Read Romans 8:26
Underline: the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.
Margin: Pray in the Spirit
Read 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Underline: pray without ceasing
Margin: Pray a lot!
Read Matthew 6:5-8
Underline: when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
Margin: Pray from the heart.
Read Matthew 6:9-13
Underline: Pray then like this
Margin: The Lord’s Prayer
God is to be our sole focus of prayer. Only He can hear and answer prayers. We don’t pray to angels, dead saints or loved ones, or other objects, but to God alone. He not only invites us to pray continually, but partners with us as the Holy Spirit prays on our behalf when we don’t know what to say. Jesus also gave us specific words to pray when we don’t know what else to pray for, what we know as the Lord’s Prayer. So when we are uncertain what to pray, we can confidently pray this.
Our Father in Heaven
Read Luke 11:11-13
Underline: If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!
Margin: God gives good
God tells us to approach Him as a loving Father. He is able to provide all things good to us and never fails us.
Hallowed Be Your Name
Read Jeremiah 23:28
Underline: but let him who has my word speak my word faithfully.
Margin: HALLOW God’s Name.
Read Matthew 5:16
Underline: let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Margin: HALLOW God’s Name.
Read Romans 2:23-24
Underline: breaking the law … The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.
Margin: HOLLOW God’s Name.
Hallowingand Hollowingare two similar, but opposite words. Hollowingis the more common and familiar word. It means to take substance or value out of something. So if I hollowout a piece of wood, all that would be left is the outer shell. It is less than it once was. Hallowingis like adding or protecting the value that is already there. While we can not make God’s Name any more holy than it already is, we can protect the value of God’s Name by using it correctly.
Similar to the 2nd Commandment (You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God), we hallowGod’s Name by using it correctly. Through teaching God’s Word, pointing attention back to God for our good deeds instead of ourselves, and calling on His Name when we are in trouble, we hallowHis Name. Conversely, we hollowGod’s Name when we publicly say we believe and trust God, but continually disobey Him. In other words, when we talk the talk, but don’t walk the walk.
College was one of the best spiritual experiences of my life. I started to think seriously about my faith in Jesus during late High School, but it was in college that my faith really took off. It was a Christian school with lots of opportunities for spiritual growth.
I took lots of theology classes and learned so much from them. But as I reflect back on my time, it wasn’t about the classes as much as it was the people around me who showed me what it was to be a Christian in today’s world.
The disciples had an amazing opportunity to learn from Jesus himself about what it means to be His follower. While there may have been some more “formal” teaching, much of what the disciples would have learned was caught rather than taught. They saw how Jesus lived and learned through that experience.
But for whatever reason, they just didn’t understand this prayer thing. They saw John teaching his disciples how to pray and asked Jesus to do the same.
Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day 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 evil.” Matthew 6:9-12
Unsure how to pray, they simply asked Jesus to teach them. And what a gift they received! They would have learned so much more beyond this prayer from Jesus, but here was a prayer they use no matter what was happening in their lives. They no longer had to wonder if their prayers were “right” or “good.”
Do you struggle with what to say to your Father? Pray then like this. Are you hurting? Pray then like this. Are you worried? Pray then like this. Are you rejoicing? Pray then like this. Do you want to pray like Jesus? Pray then like this.
We wrapped up the Lord’s Prayer this evening with the final petitions (6th: “Lead us not into temptation” and 7th: “Deliver us from evil”) for the Lord’s Prayer. Here’s the summary of what we talked about:
Lead us not into temptation
James 1:13-14 | God does not tempt us. Temptation comes from within us, from our own evil desires, and from the devil, but never from God.
1 Corinthians 10:12-13 | God allows us to be tempted, but also provides the way out for us. The temptation is not the sin.
2 Corinthians 4:8-9 | It feels like we are being assaulted from all sides, but even in the midst of it, God is with us.
James 1:2-3 | The process of being tempted makes our faith stronger.
Deliver us from evil
Proverbs 18:10 | God is our protector. His name is a strong tower for us.
Matthew 6:14-15 | If we aren’t willing to forgive others, our sins are not forgiven.
We ended up going way long on the lesson because there were so many questions. I hate missing small group time (which happens when this happens), but I love that students are wrestling with this and asking the questions.
Tonight at Cornerstone we continue the Lord’s Prayer, looking at “Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Our game this evening is Long Live The KING. Let me know your score if you end up playing along!
Two guest small group leaders this evening. My Jaime will be filling in for Sue, who’s at the KINDLE training event in Mundelein, IL. Michelle will be filling in for Darcy. Excited to have them both with us this evening.
We spent last night orienting to a new year of Cornerstone. Last year we had a full class period with no lesson to get acclimated. It seemed to long. This year we tried to just fit it in to the normal class time with a few modifications. There wasn’t enough time. I think next year we’ll try doing a 2-hour first class. We’ll see.
Introduced the topic of prayer before getting into the Lord’s Prayer specifically. The key points from the lesson:
Revelation 22:8-9 | The angel tells John to Worship God alone. It’s a good reminder that we should also pray to God alone. Not to the saints, not to angels, but only God because He’s the only one that can hear and answer our prayers.
Romans 8:26 | The Holy Spirit prays with us. Great news for when we don’t know what to pray.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 | Pray a lot. Find opportunities to pray throughout the day. Maybe it’s between classes, whenever you look outside, before meals, whatever. Look for those opportunities to pray to God.
Matthew 6:5-8 | It’s what on the inside that matters. We don’t pray to be noticed by others. It’s ok to pray in public, but we need to do it from a pure heart.
Matthew 6:9-13 | Here’s where we get the Lord’s Prayer from. Don’t know what to pray? Pray this!
Luke 11:11-13 | Just as earthly fathers know how to give good things to their children, so our Heavenly Father does the same. God gives good. He’s unlike our earthly fathers in that He never fails, forgets or hurts us. God gives good. Jaclyn had a great question on this point. She was reading a book in English class and the boy in the story was being abused by his mother. For six years he prayed to God for help and for six years saw nothing. If God gives good, where was He for this boy? Great question! I love when students make connections to real life from what we discuss at Cornerstone. It’s part of being relevant to today. I told her that sometimes God lets bad things happen to us to prepare us for ministry and to draw us closer to Him. Sometimes we don’t see what the good in this situation is until much later in life. Sometimes, we never understand the good because God is something completely and utterly different. His ways are not our ways.
Jeremiah 23:28 | One of the ways that we “hallow” God’s name is speaking His Word faithfully. We don’t ignore parts or change it.
Matthew 5:16 | Another way we “hallow” God’s name is when we serve and care for others, pointing them back to the Father.
Romans 3:23-24 | We “hollow” God’s name when our actions don’t match our words regarding what God says about how we should live.
Overall, a fun night. Here’s the audio file from the evening:
This evening we start on the Lord’s Prayer. An interesting discussion occurred here around the theme of “fathers” in the media. We like to start each night with a game themed around the lesson. This evening, we’re playing “Father and Kid Duos”. I needed fathers that Middle-School students would be able to recognize on sight.
In the end, we had a hard time coming up with a lot of options, and those that we did find weren’t very good role models. What a sad statement on our world today. This is why we need Godly men to step up and be Godly fathers to their children or role models to other students!
If you’re interested, you can play along with us this evening (or whenever you happen to read this post). The first half of the file contains the instructions and the images of the fathers. The second half has all the acceptable answers. Enjoy!