The Northfield

  2535 Shore Road

  Northfield, NJ 08225


Church of Christ




The Perfect Model

"This then is how you should pray" (Matt. 6: 9).

Many kids that I knew in my youth were into model airplanes. They usually came in a kit complete with parts that fit together and stuff that came to be known as airplane glue to adhere the parts. When completed they were displayed in their rooms, often hanging from the ceiling. I messed up on my early tries and soon went on to baseball. The model airplanes were scaled down replicas of famous planes like the American B-52 or the German Messerschmitt. We know that the model is a representation, just as a photograph of someone is not the person. We use models all the time in science class to teach about something that we cannot duplicate right there. Here in the sixth chapter of Matthew, after explaining how not to pray, Jesus gave His disciples and us a model on how to pray. A similar prayer in a different historical setting is given in the eleventh chapter of Luke.

The model give us a perfect formula for prayer. it divides it in such a way that it can be observed and studied in a couple of manners. It can be viewed as six petitions, three relating more directly to God and three to us. It might be viewed as being divided into three sections....(1) Praise, (2) Petitions, (3) More Praise.... Jesus is teaching His disciples to hold God in reverence and give Him credit as the provider of all things. He also shows that it is our privilege to go the God as we seek our needs. Some Bible versions include a doxology at the end that returns more praise to God. The real story here is that at any time we can and should desire to commune with our God through prayer. I guess the question that one might have is; "Is it OK to pray this prayer?" Of course it is. But remember, it is a model, and though it has the right components, it is not exactly personal to ourselves. Our prayers ought to be a very personal communion with God, reflecting specific needs and people. It is just fine to have a model, but why settle for it when we can have the real thing...

Have a wonderful day... Go about doing good... Love mark Phil. 4:11

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