The Simplicity of Prayer – Its Form is Simple
9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
Some practice saying this prayer as part of their religious practice. Some church congregations even say the prayer in unison as part of their worship ceremonies. However, in no place does the passage suggest that this prayer instruction be a ritualistic religious ceremony. This is simply a human invention of the prayer instruction.
There is a more scriptural understanding by a thorough analysis of the prayer’s structure. There is a natural flow to the prayer.
1. Adoration of God
2. Authority of God
3. Appeal to God.
These three structural elements are quite adequate for a prayer life.
Adoration of God
The believer should always fall humbly in obeisance before the living God. We must fall back acknowledging the unique purity and sanctity of His name. The believer’s communications must begin with recognition of the holy, separated state of our sovereign. There is none like Him, and that alone must lead our expression when we enter his presence in the courts of Heaven.
1 Give unto the LORD, O ye mighty,
Give unto the LORD glory and strength.
2 Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name;
Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.
Authority of God
May our adoration spill forth in complete submission and recognition of His right to reign. We must assert our desire and dedication to His jurisdiction over Heaven and earth. We must pledge allegiance to the totality of His spoken, written, and personal will being exercised on earth as it is Heaven.
34 And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation: 35 And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?
Appeal to God
After recognizing His Name and His sovereignty, it is now appropriate to petition our God. As we stand in His presence, we yield to His daily care of our being, and nothing beyond the day. Then we, appeal for continuation of this wonderful state by acknowledge the daily need to keep in accord with both God and man concerning our personal behavior. We then appeal to His guidance to prevent us from foolishly walking into the pitfalls which could jeopardize the glory of such union.
1 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah the second time, while he was yet shut up in the court of the prison, saying, 2 Thus saith the LORD the maker thereof, the LORD that formed it, to establish it; the LORD is his name; 3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.