Week 1: Our Father in Heaven – July 2

Father2

Day 1 – Think

Consider who ‘Our’ is.

God as father gives us security, provides for us and gives us our identity.

Do you feel valuable to God?

Do you feel secure with God?

Does God provide for your needs?

 

Think about your earthly Father figure. What were the good things, what were the not so good things about him?

Did he make you feel secure, valuable and provided for?

Do you need to forgive him of anything?

What could you do to honour your earthly Father this week?

 

Approaching God as Father is the basis of prayer and gives us the access to be able to pray as Jesus taught His followers.

The Lord’s prayer so far

Access.  Approaching God as Father.

Day 2 – Meditate

Pray throughout today – ‘Our Father in Heaven’

What does God reveal to you through this prayer?

What other prayers or thoughts flow from this prayer?

Day 3 – Scriptural context

God adopts us as His children.

Galatians 3:23 – 4:7 (NLT)

God’s Children through Faith

23 Before the way of faith in Christ was available to us, we were placed under guard by the law. We were kept in protective custody, so to speak, until the way of faith was revealed.

24 Let me put it another way. The law was our guardian until Christ came; it protected us until we could be made right with God through faith. 25 And now that the way of faith has come, we no longer need the law as our guardian.

26 For you are all children[m] of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes.[n] 28 There is no longer Jew or Gentile,[o] slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children[p] of Abraham. You are his heirs, and God’s promise to Abraham belongs to you.

1Think of it this way. If a father dies and leaves an inheritance for his young children, those children are not much better off than slaves until they grow up, even though they actually own everything their father had. 2 They have to obey their guardians until they reach whatever age their father set. 3 And that’s the way it was with us before Christ came. We were like children; we were slaves to the basic spiritual principles of this world.

4 But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. 5 God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. 6 And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.” 7 Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child. And since you are his child, God has made you his heir.

Day 4 – Sermon on the mount

The Lord’s Prayer is set within the context of the Sermon on the Mount. How does this section of the sermon add to our understanding of this week’s part of the Lord’s prayer?

What does this passage teach us about what is important to God in regards how we approach prayer?

 

Matthew 6:1-18 

Teaching about Giving to the Needy

 “Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. 2 When you give to someone in need, don’t do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get. 3 But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. 4 Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.

Teaching about Prayer and Fasting

5 “When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I tell you the truth, that is all the reward they will ever get. 6 But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.

7 “When you pray, don’t babble on and on as the Gentiles do. They think their prayers are answered merely by repeating their words again and again. 8 Don’t be like them, for your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him! 9 Pray like this:

Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy.

10 May your Kingdom come soon.  May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.

11 Give us today the food we need,[t]

12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.

13 And don’t let us yield to temptation,[u] but rescue us from the evil one.[v]

14 “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. 15 But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.

16 “And when you fast, don’t make it obvious, as the hypocrites do, for they try to look miserable and disheveled so people will admire them for their fasting. I tell you the truth, that is the only reward they will ever get. 17 But when you fast, comb your hair[w] and wash your face. 18 Then no one will notice that you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in private. And your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.

Day 5 – Application

Do you see God as your Father or your employer/landlord?

Do you resort to guilt or anger when life doesn’t go to plan?

Guilt from blaming yourself.  Anger from blaming God.

Approaching God as Father does not change with circumstance.  God accepts us as children because of ‘who’ we are in Jesus Christ, not by what we have or have not done.

 

Have you ever been disappointed or offended by God?

Do you trust God? Or do you always seem to brace yourself for tragedy?

Does what might happen tomorrow rob you of something special today?

Do you trust Father God with your tomorrow?

Do you trust God with your loved ones? Your finances? Your future?

Have you ever considered approaching God as Father?

Father

 

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