The Father-Child Relationship in Prayer

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), July 31, 2019 | Go to article overview

The Father-Child Relationship in Prayer


Greetings from Faith Lutheran Church in Eldorado.

For just shy of 2,000 years, Christians of all flavors have prayed the Lord's Prayer. Thomas O'Loughlin author of the book, "The Didache: A Window on the Earliest Christians," writes, "It is one of the few elements in Christians' worship today where one can get widespread agreement (more or less) about what to do or say: at the suggestion that a group recite the Lord's Prayer, most will both agree to the suggestion and be able to say it." (Page 76).

On page 69 he quotes the Didache, a short guide for Christians from the 1st or 2nd century A.D., which instructs Christians to pray the Lord's Prayer three times each day. This prayer had a profound effect on the first Jewish and Gentile Christians. They understood it as coming from the risen Savior's own lips, of which I concur.

Luke records that early converts were taught by the Apostles, "And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers," (Acts 2:42).

I have no doubt that the Lord's Prayer was being taught and prayed by Jesus' disciples from the beginning. Yet what do the words of the Lord's Prayer mean? To be taught the Lord's Prayer goes beyond memorizing the words to understanding the meaning they convey. We look now at the first part of the prayer.

Jesus introduces the prayer with the words, "Our Father, who art in Heaven. …

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