“Pray then like this: ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.’”
Prayer is beyond any question the highest activity of the human soul. You are at your greatest when you are on your knees in prayer. It is also the ultimate test of your spiritual condition. Therefore, we will take our time as study The Lord’s Prayer found in Matthew 6.
Jesus uses the Aramaic word abba, which means “daddy”. Abba was the term a small child would use to address his father. Now remember, the ones who can claim God as Father are the ones who know him through a relationship with His Son, Jesus Christ.
The use of “Father” in this passage is intended to inspire confidence and love in the one praying. As a child of God, you can have confidence that He will teach you spiritually, pick you up when you fall, and direct your steps securely.
The phrase “in heaven” reminds us that God is not seen, He is invisible (Col. 1:15) and thus we must pray to Him in faith. Remember, “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Heb. 11:1). Though we do not see God, we are to pray to Him in faith.
The mention of “Heaven” also speaks of God’s position as sovereign. He is on Heaven’s throne and is worthy of our faith. He is an able God! Faithlessness has no place in our prayer lives. Furthermore, this verse does not teach that God is confined to Heaven. Isa. 66:1 reveals that the earth is His footstool. Rather, it points to the fact that God, in His providence, is directing everything from His throne in Heaven.
The phrase “hallowed be your name” reminds us of His holiness. God is a holy God and must be approached in fear and reverence. To glorify His name is the ultimate end of all things. All other requests must be subordinate to this one. The name of God points to all that He is; do you hallow His name?
To hallow God means we give Him first place. We ascribe to Him the honor and glory and majesty that is and has always been His. This, we call adoration.
Let us now review some of the names of God found in the Bible and their meanings:
If our prayers are to be patterned after those of Christ, we must begin them with adoration. Before we ever begin making requests of God, asking for this or that, we are to declare His holiness, His glory, and His goodness. We are to recognize Him for who He truly is, a holy God who is a good father. Therefore, check your prayer life. Are you approaching God as father, in faith, and with fear?