This week Teresa Wells continues our our Word Nerd Wednesday series on The Lord’s Prayer with this great discussion about God’s kingdom.
Jesus Taught Us How To Pray
“Therefore, you should pray like this:…Your kingdom come.”
The Lord’s Prayer. The words speed forth in a mumble of King James English, like a mantra of religious phrases not our own, just something we memorized in rote fashion many years ago.
Yet they were Jesus’ words of instruction. Those words didn’t spew forth without thought or in King James English. Jesus’ words were instructive and wise. He said these chosen words to a group of people, so they would know how to pray.
“Your kingdom come.” (6:10a)
But what does “Your Kingdom Come Mean?”
But what does this mean, really? Or rather, what does Jesus mean?
Before we can answer that, we must know who Jesus was addressing. He was speaking to his disciples. This group is not only the Twelve; it is a bigger group whom we might label more “seekers” than disciples. Later, a great number of these disciples decided they couldn’t stomach Jesus’ message and abandoned him (John 6:60-67).
At the beginning of Matthew 5, Jesus goes up on a mountain and the large group of disciples gather round so he can teach them. It’s during this time of teaching that Jesus speaks about prayer. After telling the group not to be like the hypocrites by praying loudly and publicly, Jesus instructs them how to pray so they may please their Father. In Matthew 6:9-13, Jesus gives them a model prayer that is simple, reverent, and humble.
Jesus shows the disciples how to have the proper perspective of Father God as he directs their reverent salutation. Then he directs them to make three requests that are God-centered, not human-centered. The three requests: that God’s name be honored; that God’s kingdom come; and that God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven. After this follow requests that are human-centered.
“Your kingdom come.”
I think Jesus’ meaning was two-fold that day. He looked at the disciples and probably meant for them to pray for God’s kingdom to multiply by way of the gospel.
His Kingdom IS Coming
But we are the disciples, too, receiving the instruction on prayer. The gospel has spread far and wide, and though we are to continue to pray for the spread of the gospel, I think Jesus also intends for us to pray for His future return, when He will reign on this earth. His instructions are to pray for God’s kingdom to come. It is our ongoing hope, Christ’s righteous reign on this now unrighteous earth.
“Your kingdom come.”
Let’s be eager in our prayers. Let’s prepare our hearts, our minds, and our spirits, spending time with Jesus in the Word and in prayer. Let us pray earnestly for Christ to rule over his kingdom on the earth and ask those we meet if they know Jesus. Let’s visualize the freedom from sin, poverty, hunger, disaster, and pollution. Let’s imagine the love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control that will reign under Christ’s rule. Most of all, let’s pray vigilantly, “Your kingdom come.”Most of all, let’s pray vigilantly, “Your kingdom come.” #yourkingdomcome #wordnerdwednesday Click To Tweet
Teresa Wells is a wife, mom, and grandma living in Dallas, Texas. A retired educator, Teresa enjoys writing Bible studies and teaching young women in her church. She blogs about this and special needs parenting at www.teresawells.com.