Every Christian knows about prayer. We say grace before meals, pray with our kids at bedtime, and recite the 'Lord's Prayer.' But prayer is also a doorway to intimacy with God. We just need to change our goal from getting God to do something for me, to knowing Him better.
Our culture is becoming increasingly hostile to the God and the church of Jesus Christ. Biblical truths are attacked in government and media. Our world is showing its 'true colors': It's bad, but there's good news, too. As salt and light, Christians point to a better way, and a better day!
Her name isn't actually in Matthew's genealogy of Jesus, but she is there - 'she who was the wife of Uriah.' Bathsheba was involved in the sin that stained the rule of Israel's greatest king, David, resulting in death. But repentance and grace gave forgiveness, and new life.
Tamar and Rahab, the first two women in Matthew's genealogy of Jesus, both present a moral challenge to Christians. But the third, Ruth, seems a saint by comparison! Her circumstances, however, were far from great. Yet her life exhibits God's love and grace.
This Christmas we're going back, way back, to four Old Testament women in Jesus' family tree. Matthew's genealogy of Jesus records them for us - four unlikely women, who exhibit through their lives God's redemptive purpose in sending Jesus to this world.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen. This doxology at the end of the Disciple's Prayer declares that God is God, and we are not! He is omnipotent, eternal, glorious King of the universe! These words express our submission to Him.
The last request in the Disciple's Prayer has troubled Christians for centuries: Does God 'lead us into temptation'? What is Jesus telling us to ask for? The answer to those questions reveals that God knows the dangers of testing, and wants us to have victory over sin.
Jesus instructed His disciples to pray, 'And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.' This is the only mention in this prayer our action - how we have forgiven others. How much have you forgiven others? How much do you need forgiveness?
Jesus tells us to ask for forgiveness: Why? Because our spiritual position doesn't guarantee our spiritual condition. A disciple of Jesus has eternal life by faith; that's his position. But fellowship with God requires ongoing forgiveness of sin; that's our condition.
"Give us this day our daily bread..." Those familiar words from the Disciple's Prayer have been often misconstrued in our materialistic world. A closer look reveals that disciples recognize their dependence on God for each day's needs, and trust in Him completely.