Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Jesus on Prayer in Luke 11.1-13

1And it happened when He was in some spot praying, as He finished, someone among His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just like John also taught his disciples. 2And He said to them, “Whenever you pray, say,
            Your Name be treated as holy!
            Your Kingdom come!
            Our bread that we need daily to survive be giving to us daily!
            And forgive us our sins,
            Because we ourselves also continually forgive everything that’s owed to us!
            And don’t bring us into testing/temptation!
5And He said to them, “Imagine that one of you has a friend and travels to him in the middle of the night and says to him, ‘Friend, loan me three loaves of bread, 6because a friend of mine came by road to me and I don’t have what I will set before him.’ 7And to answer that guy would say from inside, ‘Stop bothering me! The door has already been locked and my kids are with me in the bed. I am not able to give to you after standing up.’ 8I say to you, Even if he won’t give to him after getting up because of being his friend, for sure because of his shamelessness after getting himself up he will give him as much as he needs.
9And I personally say to you, ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you. 10For everyone who asks receives and the one who seeks finds and to the one who knocks it is/will be opened.
11And a son will ask what father among you for a fish, and instead of a fish will he hand over a snake to him? 12Or also he will ask for an egg—will he hand over a scorpion to him? 13So if you, even though you’re wicked, know to be giving good gifts to your kids, how much more the Father [probably drop “the One”] from Heaven will give the Holy Spirit to those who are asking Him. 

Main point 
Jesus Gives us a model prayer and then explains that God our Father really will answer our prayers, especially if we are asking for His Holy Spirit.
Pray prayers like the one Jesus models, trusting God to answer, because He is Our Father Who will surely answer, especially we should pray for the Holy Spirit, because that is the Gift our Father really wants to give to us.

Have you ever wondered what your prayers should look like? Have you ever wondered if there was some secret praying technique that would convince God to answer your prayers? Have you ever wondered whether God really answers prayers? Have you ever wondered what prayer our Heavenly Father really wants us to ask but also really wants to answer? Well today we will get answers to all those questions by looking at Jesus’ teaching on prayer in the book of Luke, chapter 11, vv.1-13.

1.      Outline:
a.       Model Prayer
b.      Chiastic Discourse on Prayer Effectiveness
                                                              i.      Illustration # 1: Some guy’s midnight request of his friend
                                                            ii.      Explication: pray, because God really does answer prayer
                                                          iii.      Illustration # 2: Some father’s response to his son’s request for food
2.      Rhetorical Flow
a.       Model Prayer
b.      If you can get a friend who doesn’t want to answer to answer, don’t you think God Who is our Father and Who wants to answer will answer
c.       Pray, pray, pray, because it works, works, works—i.e., God answers, answers, answers
d.      If you wicked fathers give good gifts to your kids who ask, don’t you think God will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him (i.e., His kids).
3.      Miscellaneous Notes
a.       V.5 is actual a question, but it is too complicated a question to render as a question in English
b.      It is almost impossible to tell whether in v.10 whether it should be a present or a future.
c.       Ask, seek, knock are present tense
d.      The first illustration is not about a technique we use in prayer or some concern on God’s part, but about the fact that the request really will get answered no matter what
e.       It is shamelessness, not persistence—this is not a positive idea usually, so probably refers to the asker, rather than the askee, unless it is taking on a new nuance of avoidance of shame

1.      We just need to ask God in prayer
2.      God is our Father
3.      God is the God Who answers
4.      We need to pray repeatedly, expecting repeated answers
5.      We don't need to worry about God answering our prayers in a cruel way
6.      We should trust God to give good gifts
7.      We should pray for the Holy Spirit, for that is Gift that God really wants to give to us 

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