Jesus began teaching us how to pray 1,000 years before He was born!
Read / Listen
Read 1 Chronicles 29:10-13
Listen to passage & devotional:
Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 128
Q. What does your conclusion to this prayer mean?
A. “For yours is the kingdom
and the power
and the glory forever” means,
We have made all these requests of you
because, as our all-powerful king,
you not only want to,
but are able to give us all that is good;
and because your holy name,
and not we ourselves,
should receive all the praise, forever.
It's so easy to short circuit our prayers by bypassing the first two steps Jesus taught us - acknowledging who God is and then aligning our lives with His will - and jumping right to the matter that likely drove us to pray in the first place: asking God for what we need.
One thing that seems to be missing from this AAA prayer pattern is any sort of thanksgiving or even confession of sin. It's not that those components aren't important; they're critical! But King David here demonstrates that when we acknowledge and align well, the elements of thanksgiving and confession will naturally be included.
As David extols God's attributes, he quickly concludes that since "everything in heaven and earth is yours (v11)," and that "wealth and honor come from you... you give strength to all (v12)," then it's fitting to "give you thanks, and praise your glorious name (v13)."
It might surprise you when you go to read the Lord's Prayer in the accounts where Jesus first taught it, which are recorded in Matthew 6 and Luke 11. It seems like a big chunk of what we've come to call the Lord's Prayer isn't even mentioned by Jesus! The words "For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory" are missing from the gospels.
What's going on here? Is this the result of some big conspiracy to add words to the Bible that were never there in the first place? Of course not. Jesus did speak these words, just not in the instances where he taught His disciples (that's us) to pray.
This past year, we've been unpacking our only comfort, that we belong body and soul, in life and in death, to our faithful Savior, Jesus Christ. Our journey has taken us through 259 (we'll finish up at 260 tomorrow!) passages. We've read from at least 47 different books of the Bible, spending just slightly more time in the New Testament than what we did in the Old Testament. Of course all of these words we've read are the words of God Himself.
The comfort Jesus speaks to you comes through the entire Bible, not just in the red letters of the gospels! Remember, in teaching you this prayer, Jesus isn't commanding you to simply mutter the same words over and over as if they're a magic spell. Rather, He taught a pattern in which your prayers should ordinarily conform to.
So it's fitting that we end the prayer Jesus taught us in the gospels with the words He spoke through His Holy Spirit in inspiring David to pray 1,000 years before Jesus came to Earth:
Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor... Yours, LORD is the kingdom; you are exalted over all (v11).
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Praise be to you, LORD, the God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Since wealth and honor comes from God, and He is the ruler of all things, pray that you will use the blessings He's given you in a way that honors and glorifies Him;
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: