Message NotesLord Teach Us To Pray – Part 4 Page 1
Sunday July 28th 2013
Lord Teach Us To Pray
1). Mt 6:9 ¶ "In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. 10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done On 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 do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
a). We had seen last time that having set in place the context out of which prayer is to come, which is, our relationship with God with respect to rulership in Christ’s coming Kingdom and the certainty of that Kingdom and what will be accomplished through it – the first place the Lord turns is to, ‘Give us this day our daily bread’.
b). This took us firstly to Israel in the wilderness and God’s provision of the manna, the spiritual food, that was to sustain the nation as they were led by the Spirit to the land of their inheritance. But we also know that they despised this provision, longing instead for the foods they ate as slaves in Egypt.
c). The reason for this we can see recorded in the Psalms –
Ps 78:19 Yes, they spoke against God: They said, "Can God prepare a table in the wilderness? 20 Behold, He struck the rock, So that the waters gushed out, And the streams overflowed. Can He give bread also? Can He provide meat [Lit. flesh] for His people?" 21 Therefore the LORD heard this and was furious; So a fire was kindled against Jacob, And anger also came up against Israel, 22 Because they did not believe in God, And did not trust in His salvation. 23 Yet He had commanded the clouds above, And opened the doors of heaven,24 Had rained down manna on them to eat, And given them of the bread of heaven.25 Men ate angels' food; He sent them food to the full.
d). We see that they did not believe in God, And did not trust in His salvation and their unbelief is then corroborated for us by the commentary we find in the Book of Hebrews - Heb 4:2 For also the gospel was preached to us, as well as to them. But the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.
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e). There are 2 additional interconnected things we might note from Psalm 78 – firstly, we can note that God ‘opened the doors of heaven’ in order to give them ‘of the bread of heaven’, that which is described as ‘angels’ food’ – literally ‘food of the mighty ones’.
f). Now we might remember that the Lord gave instructions to Moses with regards to the Tabernacle he was to build, that it was to replicate the Tabernacle that exists in the heavens - Ex 25:40 "And see to it that you make them according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain.
And within the Tabernacle that Moses builds replicating the one in heaven we find - Ex 25:30 "And you shall set the showbread on the table before Me always.
g). As the priests in the earthly Tabernacle would enter the Holy Place immediately to their right would be the table with the showbread – showbread is a translation of the same Hebrew word, ‘lechem’, translated ‘bread’ in Psalm 78. – Manna is the name Israel gave to the bread, the ‘lechem’ that God rained on them.
h). We know that we see Christ pictured in the Tabernacle – He is ‘the light of the world’ seen in the candlestick and ‘the bread of life’ seen in the showbread.
i). And so as we see the manna described as the bread of heaven and as we then see Jesus describing Himself thus in - Joh 6:35 And Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst………………………48 "I am the bread of life. 49 "Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 "This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die.
We will immediately realize that the manna is a type of the ‘true bread from heaven’, the ‘bread of life’ – the Lord Jesus Christ. Which is perfectly in keeping with that which we read in - 1Co 10:3 all ate the same spiritual food,
4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.
The spiritual food is the manna, the bread of heaven, which is Christ and the spiritual drink from the spiritual Rock is Christ - Joh 6:51 "I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world."
Joh 7:37 ¶ On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. 38 "He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water." 39
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But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
j). ‘The last day, that great day of the feast’ is referencing the Feast of Tabernacles, the 7th of the 7 feasts given to Israel - Joh 7:2 Now the Jews' Feast of Tabernacles was at hand.
During the days of Jesus first advent, during this feast the priests would go down to the pool of Siloam for 7 days with large water jugs which they would fill and bring back to the temple and pour upon the pavement in remembrance of God’s provision from the Rock in the wilderness journey and also looking forward to the day when Kingdom of God would be established just as we see prophesied by Isaiah – Isa 12:1 ¶ And in that day you will say: "O LORD, I will praise You; Though You were angry with me, Your anger is turned away, and You comfort me. 2 Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; 'For YAH, the LORD, is my strength and song; He also has become my salvation.'" 3 Therefore with joy you will draw water From the wells of salvation. 4 ¶ And in that day you will say: "Praise the LORD, call upon His name; Declare His deeds among the peoples, Make mention that His name is exalted. 5 Sing to the LORD, For He has done excellent things; This is known in all the earth. 6 Cry out and shout, O inhabitant of Zion, For great is the Holy One of Israel in your midst!"
k). On the 8th day of the Feast though, which was known as ‘that great day’ there was no priestly procession to the pool of Siloam, no filling of water jugs and no pouring on the pavement in remembrance but rather a day that looked to the day when that spoken by Isaiah would be fulfilled. And it is on this ‘great day’ of the feast, referencing that which we see in Isaiah Chapter 12 that Jesus makes the declaration that we read in John Chapter 7.
Isa 44:3 For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring;
l). On this particular great day of the feast the scriptures were being fulfilled as the ‘Holy One of Israel’ stood in their midst offering ‘them water from the wells of salvation’ but Israel would neither hear it nor believe it –
Joh 7:40 Therefore many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, "Truly this is the Prophet." 41 Others said, "This is the Christ." But some said, "Will the Christ come out of Galilee? 42 "Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was?" 43 So there was a division among the people because of Him. 44 Now some of them wanted to take Him, but no one laid hands on Him.
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m). We might just note here that ‘there was a division among the people because of Him’ – a division between belief on the one hand and unbelief on the other; just as there was in the camp of Israel during the wilderness journey - Nu 14:28 "Say to them, 'As I live,' says the LORD, 'just as you have spoken in My hearing, so I will do to you: 29 'The carcasses of you who have complained against Me shall fall in this wilderness, all of you who were numbered, according to your entire number, from twenty years old and above 30 'Except for Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun, you shall by no means enter the land which I swore I would make you dwell in.
2). To go back to Psalm 78:20 for a moment the scripture records Israel asking the question – ‘Can He give bread also? Can He provide meat [Lit. flesh] for His people?’ And this takes us to the second of the 2 additional interconnected things we would note in the verses from this Psalm – not only is Jesus the bread from heaven pictured in the manna He is also the literal embodiment of the answer to the question recorded in Psalm 78 - Joh 6:51 "I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, [can also be translated meat] which I shall give for the life of the world." 52 The Jews therefore quarreled among themselves, saying, "How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?" 53 Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.
a). Again we see scripture being fulfilled in their midst, accompanied again by unbelief - Joh 6:60 ¶ Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, "This is a hard saying; who can understand it?" 61 When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, "Does this offend you? 62 "What then if you should see the Son of Man ascend where He was before? 63 "It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. 64 "But there are some of you who do not believe." For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who would betray Him. 65 And He said, "Therefore I have said to you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted to him by My Father." 66 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.
b). Now let’s note carefully that the unbelief we see here is not just from the religious leaders of Israel which we would expect, but from His own disciples, those who had followed Him daily.
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c). And the scripture tells us - From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more. – They ‘went back’, it doesn’t say they abandoned their belief as to who He was but rather that they walked with Him no more – they were not prepared to follow what He taught as it was too hard.
d). This turning back and walking with Him no more might remind us of some verses from the Epistles that we have looked at before –
Php 3:17 ¶ Brethren, join in following my example, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern. 18 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: 19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame--who set their mind on earthly things.
Heb 10:39 But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.
e). So, here then amongst Jesus’ disciples we see a division, a division between belief and unbelief - Joh 6:67 Then Jesus said to the twelve, "Do you also want to go away?" 68 But Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal [age lasting] life. 69 "Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."
f). Peter did not say that what the Lord said was easy or that he understood it all, but what he did say was that he knew that Jesus had the words necessary for life in the age to come and that they had ‘come to believe that You are Christ, the Son of the living God’ – and we will remember from last week what is encompassed in these 2 statements about the Lord’s identity so that we might hear the fullness of that which Peter says here.
3). So then, within the camp of Israel in the wilderness there was division between those with belief and those with unbelief – all connected with God’s spiritual provision with respect to inheritance in the land of promise.
a). At the Lord’s first advent there is division in the camp of Israel between those who have belief and those who have unbelief – all connected with the embodiment of God’s spiritual provision with respect to inheritance in the heavenly land of promise.
b). And then there is this same division amongst His disciples, amongst those who followed Him daily.
c). And of course this same division continues today amongst His household servants in this dispensation - 2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers;
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d). This is why the Lord would have us focus on ‘Give us this day our daily bread’ – it is our daily bread that is essential to the fulfillment of God’s purpose for us.
e). Jesus spoke of this very thing in - Joh 4:31 In the meantime His disciples urged Him, saying, "Rabbi, eat." 32 But He said to them, "I have food to eat of which you do not know." 33 Therefore the disciples said to one another, "Has anyone brought Him anything to eat?" 34 Jesus said to them, "My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.
f). Job spoke of it this way - Job 23:12 I have not departed from the commandment of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth More than my necessary food.
g). And from David we find this - Ps 119:14 I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies, As much as in all riches. 15 I will meditate on Your precepts, And contemplate Your ways. 16 I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word.
h). And then in James - Jas 1:21 Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
i). In Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge – riches beyond anything the human realm can offer, to be realized as an adornment of splendor in that glorious Day - Pr 3:13 ¶ Happy is the man who finds wisdom, And the man who gains understanding; 14 For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, And her gain than fine gold. 15 She is more precious than rubies, And all the things you may desire cannot compare with her. 16 Length of days is in her right hand, In her left hand riches and honor. 17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, And all her paths are peace. 18 She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her, And happy are all who retain her.
j). Such is the importance of our daily bread.
4). Now when the Lord speaks of our ‘daily’ bread we should not just think of this as that which He provides every day, which He does, but we should understand it within the context of that recorded in the second part of the warning given in Hebrews which draws from Israel’s experience in the wilderness - Heb 3:7 ¶ Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: "Today, if you will hear His voice, 8 Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial in the wilderness, 9 Where your fathers tested Me, tried Me, And saw My works forty years. 10 Therefore I was angry with that generation, And said, 'They
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always go astray in their heart, And they have not known My ways.' 11 So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest.'"
a). Today, if you will hear His voice: - The word translated ‘today’, in both its Hebrew original in Psalm 95, from which our author quotes, and in its Greek translation in Hebrews 3:7, refer to the immediate present. Therefore on a personal level it is right now that we need to hear His voice, our daily bread, and then within a broader context, it is only within Man’s Day that there is opportunity to hear the Lord’s voice with respect to the coming Day of the Lord, our bread for today with a view to tomorrow.
b). We can see this in a type with Israel - Ex 16:22 ¶ And so it was, on the sixth day, that they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each one. And all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. 23 Then he said to them, "This is what the LORD has said: 'Tomorrow is a Sabbath rest, a holy Sabbath to the LORD. Bake what you will bake today, and boil what you will boil; and lay up for yourselves all that remains, to be kept until morning.'" 24 So they laid it up till morning, as Moses commanded; and it did not stink, nor were there any worms in it. 25 Then Moses said, "Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to the LORD; today you will not find it in the field. 26 "Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, which is the Sabbath, there will be none."
c). What we see here then is that Israel collected the bread on the 6th day that was to sustain them on the 7th day – the Sabbath rest which was a holy day.
d). Now we find ourselves in the 6th day [ the 6th 1000 years] and it is during this 6th day that we are to gather what is needed of the bread of life that we might have life in the 7th Day [ the 7th 1000 years – the age to come] – the Sabbath rest of God.
e). And there will of course be no ‘bread’ for us to gather on the 7th Day for our time of gathering with respect to the 7th Day will be over – during the 7th Day we shall eat from the tree of life.
f). It is then in our immediate present, right now, not later, that we are to gather the bread given during this 6th day to prepare us for the 7th Day.
2Co 6:2 For He says: "In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you." Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.
g). And if we go back to our warning in Hebrews, which draws from the experience of Israel, we find that according to both the Hebrew and the Greek languages there is only one way that we will be able to hear His voice with respect to the age to come, the 7th Day. And this is given to us in v8 of Psalm 95 quoted in
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v8 of Hebrews Chapter 3 - Heb 3:8 Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial in the wilderness,
h). We will then only hear His voice if we do not harden our hearts.
i). Now, the interesting thing about what is written in our scripture in the Greek language we might remember, is that it would literally read, ‘do not continue to harden your hearts’ – the original recipients of this letter then had already begun to harden their hearts and they are admonished to stop doing this at once.
j). That those who received this letter had already begun to harden their hearts is not really surprising as within the Book of Hebrews we will remember we are told this about them - Heb 5:10 ¶ called by God as High Priest "according to the order of Melchizedek," 11 of whom we have much to say, and hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food.
k). They had become, ‘dull of hearing’, with respect to what they needed to know about the coming of Christ’s Kingdom seen in the ‘order of Melchezedek’, they needed to be taught again, ‘the first principles of the oracles of God’ and they had regressed to the point of needing ‘milk and not solid food’.
l). And the example given to them concerning the process of the hardening of their hearts, which must have been the very thing that was happening to them, is Israel’s ‘the day of trial in the wilderness’ – the rejection of God’s provision of the manna coupled with unbelief.
m). Let’s remember that this letter is written to all those who would potentially comprise the many sons being brought to glory, those who are partakers of the heavenly calling – therefore it becomes a sobering thought that even those in pursuit of the Kingdom, maybe even ourselves, even at this moment, may have begun upon the process of the hardening of the heart for the very same reason as those who were first to receive this letter. What we may conclude then is that the hardening of the heart after this fashion is a very real danger for all in pursuit of the Kingdom from all generations – this is what we see in Israel in the wilderness, we see it at Christ’s first advent firstly amongst the Jews and then amongst His disciples, and so it is not surprising that we would see it amongst Christians today, even amongst those who are in pursuit of the Kingdom.
n). It is then imperative that we remain diligent in our prayers towards our daily bread, not just that the Lord would give it to us because that He has already done, but rather diligent in understanding what it is, why it is and its connection to keeping the Kingdom ever before us as the motivation of our spiritual life so that
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we don’t harden our hearts – Heb 2:1 ¶ Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away.
o). The context for our prayer here then is the urgency that we feel in being prepared for our meeting with the Lord at His Judgment Seat and the passion we have to be found worthy there. Our request is not that God would give to us as He would certainly not withhold it, but that He would give us, would do in us, whatever is necessary that our passion may be realized, that we would not drift away.
p). Lu 11:9 "So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 "For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 11 "If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? 12 "Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!"
Asking for our daily bread and asking for the Holy Spirit is one and the same thing.
q). Finally for this morning let’s remember these words from the Lord –
Mt 5:5 Blessed are the meek, For they shall inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.
5). We will continue with this again next week – if the Lord is willing.