Thy Kingdom Come Here Part 1
by Andy Cokayne 29 October 2023
How well do you know the Lord’s Prayer?
This week we are asked to pray the Lord’s Prayer in and for our community, but also to live for God’s Kingdom in our community.
It can be hard for some of us to commit to community, especially if we’re guarded or prefer solitude. But community is God’s desire for us—and it’s a sign of a mature faith. Because at the end of the day, when we grow in our relationships with other believers, we grow in relationship with Him!
Most of what Paul wrote, were letters to churches at: Rome; Corinth; Galatia; Philippi; Ephesus; Colossae; and Thessalonica, all were groups of believers, communities, often coming to terms with what it meant to follow Jesus,.
Paul urges the community in Rome - Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. (Romans 12:16)
The writer to the Hebrews says - And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another. (Hebrews 10:24–25)
God loves us an individuals, but he also loves communities.
On Sunday 29th we looked at the first three sections, or days set out on the Prayer Card, of the Lord’s Prayer, and Jacky is going to carry on next Sunday with the final four.
First - Our Father who art in heaven
We are not to pray to saints, or angels, or even the Virgin Mary, but to the everlasting Father, the Lord of heaven and earth. We call him Father, as our creator as Paul preached in Athens “in him we live, and move, and have our being, - we are his offspring.” (Acts 17v28).
The phrase “Our Father in heaven” indicates that God is not only majestic and holy, but also personal and loving. Note to that Jesus said “Our”, not “My” Father, or “Your” Father, but “Our”, as a community He is Our Father. He is not exclusive, he is more than “My” Father, he is Our Father.
We have an amazing privilege and honour to be able to call God Almighty, creator of heaven and earth, Our Father, we are called to be intimate with the all-powerful God.
Second - Hallowed be your name
To pray hallowed be your name means to ask God to let his name be worshipped, exalted, honoured, and adored on earth as it is in heaven. It is to ask God to move and act in the world, that people will worship and treasure Him above all else.
We all hallow something. It might be a person, a job, our family, our money, our reputation, or something else. There aren’t two kinds of people in the world: hallowers and non-hallowers. There is only one kind: the hallower, the worshipper. We worship what is most important to us.
What is the most important thing in your life? If we put anything before our Father we will flounder and fall. Therefore in giving us the Lord’s Prayer, he insists we cannot pray to him as an intimate Father unless we also value him as our Almighty God above all else.
Third - Your kingdom come your will be done on earth as it is in heaven
The phrase “Your kingdom come” is a reference to God’s spiritual reign, not like some thought at the time Israel’s freedom from Rome. God’s kingdom was announced in the covenant with Abraham (8v11 Luke 13v28) is present in Christ’s reign in believers’ hearts (Luke 17v21), and will be complete when all evil is destroyed, and God establishes the new heaven and the new earth (Revelation 21v1). This is the time when sin, sorrow, and Satan shall finally be done away with.
When we pray “Your will be done,” we are not resigning ourselves too fate, but praying that God’s perfect purpose will be accomplished in this world as well as in the next. We are praying that God’s laws may be obeyed by people on earth as perfectly, readily, and unceasingly as they are by angels in heaven. We ask that those who do not obey his laws now may be taught to obey them, and that those who do obey them may obey them better.
So what does all this mean to us?
What does it look like for you and me, when we pray for God’s kingdom to come here in our community? Perhaps:
That all will live in peace.
That all will have enough to eat.
That all will feel and be secure.
That all will have a roof over their heads, and be warm.
That all will feel part of a loving, and giving community.
That all will know Jesus.
We are to pray that God will move / or is He already moving, in this community?
It is up to us to get to know what God is doing, and then join in.
Hymn – Build your kingdom here (Rend Collective)
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