The Lord's Prayer Bible Study
I. Christ in My Eyes
The Gospels paint a vivid picture of the life of Jesus, and how He desires for people to live. Often, He tells a parable or prays a prayer to demonstrate a chief principle or character quality which He desires all people to possess. The greatest of Jesus' sayings is found in Matthew, when He demonstrates the way believers ought to pray.
Prior to Jesus' prayer, Jesus speaks to His disciples and a large crowd on the Mount of Olives to teach the specific way in which they are to pray (Matt. 6:5). This sermon stems from Jesus giving a previous warning as to not practice righteousness for the purpose of being noticed by others (Matt. 6:1). He starts by exclaiming, "Do not pray like the hypocrites." Jesus uses the term hypocrites to show His disciples the opposite example of proper righteousness (Shelton, 164).
He said this under the context the disciples would pray to Him with no ulterior motives (Barker and Kohlenberger 31). In that time, it was a custom among the chief priests and elders (the "hypocrites" in the passage) to sound trumpets when they were giving to charity or fasting. During this historical period, it was generally thought the efficiency of prayers and fasts were insured by almsgiving (Barker and Kohlenberger, 30). Additionally, the Pharisees loved to stand and pray in a showy fashion for everyone to observe (Matt. 6:5). Referring to this action, God warns that "They have received their reward in full" (Barker and Kohlenberger,164). However, Jesus desires for the disciples to avoid temptation of this type of spiritual exhibitionism by closing the door and praying in an inner room (164). For Jesus said, "Your Father who sees what is done in secret will...