Friday, February 20, 2015

Lesson - The Model Prayer

VERSES:   Luke 11:1-5;  Matthew 6:9-15

MEMORY VERSE:   Luke 11:1  "...Lord, teach us to pray..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Review the first five books of the Old testament.

PRAYER:   Thank the Lord for our many blessings and for even having the avenue of prayer where the Lord, Creator of All, listens to our needs and desires. 

SPECIAL SONG:   How Do Christians Worship God?  (see May 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #5) 

VISUAL AID:   Write the words of Jesus' model prayer on the white board or chalkboard. As the Bible teacher reads each phrase, circle the things that are learned (see below).

  • Jesus had been in a certain place praying. When He stopped, Jesus' disciples asked Him to teach them to pray as John had taught his disciples. Jesus explained to them how to pray and different things for which to pray. This was what He told His disciples who were with Him. He said,
    • "Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name." We should address God when we pray, being respectful and honoring Him with a title such as "Father," "Creator," or just simply recognizing Him as the one true God as David did in many of his psalms.
    • "Thy kingdom come." The kingdom or the church had not been established at this time, so Jesus included that the church would be established as God willed in His prayer.  Today, the kingdom or church has been established, so there is no need to continue to pray for something to come that has already happened. Everything else in Jesus' example prayer should be prayed for.
    • "Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth." When children of God pray, they always pray that God's Will will be done, not their own will. 
    • "Give us this day our daily bread." We should ask God for our food because we know that, being a good and gracious Father, God gives us what we need.
    • "And forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone that is indebted to us." As we learned in the lesson, The Parable of The Unmerciful Servant (see February on this blog), if we are forgiven, we must forgive others.
    • "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil." We should also pray that we would not be  tempted by the devil, but that we should be delivered from evil. With each temptation that comes our way, there is a way to escape it (1 Corinthians 10:13). Sometimes the way to escape is not clear, so we must search for that escape path, knowing that it is there. Joseph's escape from temptation was to simply 'flee' or run away from temptation (see April - Lesson - Joseph Goes To Egypt on this blog). We might need to do that, too!
  • We must remember that the prayer that Jesus used to teach His disciples to pray was not necessarily words that we memorize and recite, but that our prayers should come form our hearts, using this prayer as a model prayer to teach us, like Jesus taught his disciples, how to pray.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • People occasionally call this example of Jesus teaching His disciples how to pray in Luke 11:1-4 as "The Lord's Prayer," but Jesus was only explaining to them how to pray. He was answering the disciples' question on prayer (verse 1). Jesus did not intend for people to pray the exact same words that He used. We know this because Jesus prayed for the kingdom to come in verse 2. The kingdom or the church had not been established at this time, so it was something important for which to pray. Acts 2 tells us that the church began on Pentecost (Acts 2:1) and that the Lord added daily to the church (Acts 2:47) on that day when believers were baptized (Acts 2:41). The kingdom or church was established after Jesus' death on the cross. If someone wanted to know what the Lord's prayer was, they would turn to John 17 and read Jesus' heartfelt prayer to His Father. 
ACTIVITY:   "...Lord, teach us to pray..."
Materials needed:  9" x 12" light brown construction paper, pencil, marker, scissors.

  1. Hand out paper.
  2. Fold paper in half.
  3. Using one of the student's hands, place one hand on paper. Make certain the thumb and index finger are actually on the fold.
  4. Trace hand with paper folded.
  5. Cut out hand, leaving the index finger and thumb uncut on the fold.
  6. Unfold hands.
  7. On the outside of one hand, write "...Lord, teach us to pray..."
  8. On the outside of the other hand, write "Luke 11:1-5."
  9. Turn hands over.
  10. On the inside of one hand, write "1. Praise God's name." "2. Pray for the church." "3. Pray that God's will be done."
  11. On the inside of the other hand, write "4. Pray for food." "5. Ask for forgiveness." and "6. Lead us not into temptation."
  12. Fold hands before the students take them home.