Continuing in the apostles’ doctrine.

emmaus

All quotations are from the New King James Version of the Bible.

Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

              This was Christ giving instructions to His apostles just before the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was given. On that day when the Holy Spirit came upon Peter he stood up and preached the message of repentance and remission of sins through the name of Jesus Christ resulting in 3000 becoming disciples of Jesus and being added to (built into) the assembly of Christ;

Acts 2:36  “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  “For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.  And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine (and-even) fellowship, also the breaking of bread, also prayers.  Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.  Now all who believed were together (Greek sense is ‘about the same thing’ = in harmony) and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.  So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church (ekklesia – assembly) daily those who were being saved.

 

All of the following is only possible by the indwelling Christ Who is the Spirit.

              The Lord Jesus Christ had spent over 3 years teaching His disciples – students – apprentices – about the kingdom of God. It wasn’t bible school or theology. I wasn’t how to win friends and influence people. It wasn’t about communication techniques. What was the major thing Jesus taught those who left everything to follow Him?

John 15:9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends. You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. These things I command you, that you love one another.

John 17:20  “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me. And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

Jesus had majored on teaching His followers to love one another, to continue with one another, to forgive one another, to share with one another, to support one another, to not criticize or judge one another, to give to one another. These were among Christ’s commandments to be taught by His apostles for the next generation of disciples to observe. Commandments are to be observed, obeyed, carried out. The commandments of Christ can only be fully observed by those who have repented – dropped everything to follow Jesus – and received the gift of the Holy Spirit, Who sheds His love abroad in their hearts. They are not a new set of rules to burden folks unwilling or unable to carry them out.

First hearing and believing the message of repentance and remission of sins through the name of Jesus Christ.

Then repentance – leaving all, everyone, everything, every way and every thought to follow Jesus.

Then baptism in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission (removal, release from) sins.

Then receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit resulting in prophesy/speaking in new languages.

Then being instructed in the commandments of Christ (the apostles’ doctrine – the things taught by the apostles for the new disciples to observe.)

 

As seen in Acts 2:42 first to be taught was community – koinonia – meaning commonality – having things shared.

Matthew 16:13 When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”  So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”  Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter (Petros – a rock), and on this rock (Petras – a big rock, Christ)  I will build My church (ekklesia = assembly}, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

Christ’s intention from the beginning is to have an assembly, a team, a community of living stones and for it to be built on one foundation which is Jesus Christ Himself the chief cornerstone.

Psalms 68:5 A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, Is God in His holy habitation. God sets the solitary in families; He brings out those who are bound into prosperity; But the rebellious dwell in a dry land.

God is the God of families. He made us this way on purpose.

Psalms 133:1 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, running down on the beard, the beard of Aaron, running down on the edge of his garments. It is like the dew of Hermon, descending upon the mountains of Zion; For there the LORD commanded the blessing— Life forevermore.

Ecc 4:9 Two are better than one, seeing they have a good reward for their labour.  For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falls, and there is not a second to lift him up.  Also if two should lie together, they also get heat: but how shall one be warmed alone?  And if one should prevail against him, the two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord shall not be quickly broken.

Matthew 18:15  “Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother.  “But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’  “And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church (assembly). But if he refuses even to hear the church (the assembly), let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector. “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you (plural) bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you (plural) loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.  “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven.  “For where two or three are gathered together in My name (Yah’ishua = God the Saviour = Jesus), I am there in the midst of them.”

For my brother to sin against me, I need to be seeing him quite a lot. Brothers I never see nor hear from, don’t generally sin against me, not that I am aware of anyway. Jesus was telling the disciples these things because they were called to be in close relationship and contact with one another. While this kind of necessary fellowship is wonderful and generally positive in effect it is not without challenges. But worth the challenges!

Relationships are first and foremost one to one. If we don’t have real relationships with folks one to one then relationships with a group are not going to be very real or effective. We can’t love the assembly without first receiving one another individually.

Note how Jesus starts with advising  ‘privately between the two parties’ and then with ‘one or two more’. This is the best option! In human thinking this may not generally be what occurs to us. We may have been conditioned to believe that the more the better. It was a crowd that called for Jesus to be crucified. It was a mob that stoned Stephen and beat Paul and others. We have a better chance to be rational and less hasty in twos or threes. We have a better chance to hear the voice of the Spirit and our own consciences.

Mark 6:7 And He called the twelve to Himself, and began to send them out two by two, and gave them power over unclean spirits.  

Luke 10:1 After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go.

Jesus here demonstrates the importance of not being alone in His work. Also that two will do.

Luke 9:12 When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.”  But He said to them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.”  For there were about five thousand men. Then He said to His disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of fifty.”  And they did so, and made them all sit down. Then He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude.  So they all ate and were filled, and twelve baskets of the leftover fragments were taken up by them.

Here we have a huge crowd. Five thousand men plus women and children as only the men were numbered. Too many to feed efficiently as a single group. So the disciples made them sit in groups of fifty. Fifty was manageable by one or two disciples. Being practical when it comes to numbers is important to Jesus. He is the most practical Person ever! The disciples learnt from this exercise and implemented the lesson later as we see in the book of Acts 2 where three thousand one hundred and twenty disciples continued daily, house to house.

Acts 9:26  And when Saul had come to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples; but they were all afraid of him, and did not believe that he was a disciple. But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles. And he declared to them how he had seen the Lord on the road, and that He had spoken to him, and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus.  So he was with them at Jerusalem, coming in and going out.

Here Barnabas has received Saul, as Christ had received himself. This is the building block of the body of Christ, individual disciples knit together by the love of God shed within them by the Holy Spirit. Truly God sets the solitary in families! These relationships are essential to the building up of the body of Christ.

Acts 20:17 From Miletus he (Paul) sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church (assembly). And when they had come to him, he said to them: “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you, serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears and trials which happened to me by the plotting of the Jews; how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house, “

Here Paul is explaining to the elders how He served in the gospel and in teaching both in public (large numbers – evangelising) and house to house – small numbers for teaching, care and encouragement. He says this so that the elders will learn from Paul’s example and evangelise in public and encourage care among the flock house to house.

Acts 20:28 “Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church (assembly) of God which He purchased with His own blood. “For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. “Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.

Paul knows that after his departure some elders will raise themselves up and draw disciples after themselves. Those who draw the disciples after themselves tend to avoid dividing their followers into smaller groups to serve one another. Instead they prefer to get all their followers into one location at one time so they can personally lead them wherever they want to take them. Sadly today this is seen as normal, with a solitary elder (The Minister, Pastor, Vicar, Priest etc) dominating the flock he has drawn after himself. It should not be so among the disciples of Jesus Christ. In this Paul was only applying practically and relevantly to the situation in the local assembly that which Jesus had warned His disciples about here:

Matthew 23:1  Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples,  saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.  Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.  For they bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.  But all their works they do to be seen by men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments.  They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues, (gatherings) greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called by men, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi.’ (Teacher, Teacher) But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren.  Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.  And do not be called masters (director, leader); for One is your Master, the Christ.  But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.  And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

The desire to be seen to be special may lead to dividing the body of Christ locally. Through exalting oneself and allowing the disciples to refer to one by whatever title sets them apart as a leader instead of the Christ. Sadly this is so common that it is accepted as ‘good’ and not challenged as it should be among those bought with the blood of God’s own Son. Multiple elders in each city with shared oversight/care is God’s way to safely have the flock overseen.

Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.

Hebrews 3:12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God;  but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin

This is only possible where brothers and sisters dwell in unity. Having received one another as Christ received us. Without ‘two or three’ type relationships I will not be aware that my brother is in trouble and even if I know, I will not be best placed to give help. If I only have superficial chats with fellow large meeting attendees none of this is likely to happen. But God sets the solitary in families!

Hebrews 10:19  Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh,  and having a High Priest over the house of God,  let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.  Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling (episynagogw – intense, intimate fellowship) of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

This is a clear exhortation not to forsake being continually together in the name of Jesus. Going to a theatre style event with large numbers in the name of a group, ‘church’ or denomination does not count. Only in genuine one to one, or among as many as can comfortably fit in a home situation, will each member grow in functioning in the gift they have been given. Thereby each one will be built up in their most holy faith into the Head of the assembly, Jesus the Lord, the Anointed One.

 

The second commandment to be observed was breaking bread, daily house to house. Daily implies no set day or time and house to house implies no set place but wherever and whenever was convenient. This was worship in spirit and in truth, not in this or that particular place or time.

Luke 22:14 When the hour had come, He sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. Then He said to them, “With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.”  Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, “Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”  And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”  Likewise He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you.”

After this last supper Jesus did something that illustrated the purpose of breaking bread to not forget Him.

John 13:1 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.  And supper being ended, the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray Him,  Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God,  rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself.  After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded.  Then He came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, “Lord, are You washing my feet?”  Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this.”  Peter said to Him, “You shall never wash my feet!” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”  Simon Peter said to Him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!”  Jesus said to him, “He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you.”  For He knew who would betray Him; therefore He said, “You are not all clean.”

 So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.

              The disciples like the Jews of the time would have been aware of the ordinance of the ashes of the red heifer which was given so the priests and Levites could restore sanctification after becoming un-clean and unable to function in the house of God.

Numbers 19:1  Now the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “This is the ordinance of the law which the LORD has commanded, saying: ‘Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without blemish, in which there is no defect and on which a yoke has never come. You shall give it to Eleazar the priest, that he may take it outside the camp, and it shall be slaughtered before him; and Eleazar the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, and sprinkle some of its blood seven times directly in front of the tabernacle of meeting. Then the heifer shall be burned in his sight: its hide, its flesh, its blood, and its offal shall be burned. And the priest shall take cedar wood and hyssop and scarlet, and cast them into the midst of the fire burning the heifer. Then the priest shall wash his clothes, he shall bathe in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp; the priest shall be unclean until evening. And the one who burns it shall wash his clothes in water, bathe in water, and shall be unclean until evening. Then a man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer, and store them outside the camp in a clean place; and they shall be kept for the congregation of the children of Israel for the water of purification; it is for purifying from sin. And the one who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until evening. It shall be a statute forever to the children of Israel and to the stranger who dwells among them. He who touches the dead body of anyone shall be unclean seven days. He shall purify himself with the water on the third day and on the seventh day; then he will be clean. But if he does not purify himself on the third day and on the seventh day, he will not be clean.  Whoever touches the body of anyone who has died, and does not purify himself, defiles the tabernacle of the LORD. That person shall be cut off from Israel. He shall be unclean, because the water of purification was not sprinkled on him; his uncleanness is still on him.

This is the law when a man dies in a tent: All who come into the tent and all who are in the tent shall be unclean seven days; and every open vessel, which has no cover fastened on it, is unclean. Whoever in the open field touches one who is slain by a sword or who has died, or a bone of a man, or a grave, shall be unclean seven days. And for an unclean person they shall take some of the ashes of the heifer burnt for purification from sin, and running water shall be put on them in a vessel. A clean person shall take hyssop and dip it in the water, sprinkle it on the tent, on all the vessels, on the persons who were there, or on the one who touched a bone, the slain, the dead, or a grave. The clean person shall sprinkle the unclean on the third day and on the seventh day; and on the seventh day he shall purify himself, wash his clothes, and bathe in water; and at evening he shall be clean. But the man who is unclean and does not purify himself, that person shall be cut off from among the assembly, because he has defiled the sanctuary of the LORD. The water of purification has not been sprinkled on him; he is unclean.

              Having been chosen by God to be priests and serve in the Holy place the priests were first washed (a shadow of baptism in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission – removal of sins). Then they were consecrated by having oil poured over them (a shadow of the gift of the Holy Spirit). Then they were dressed in Holy robes (a shadow of justification and sanctification by the Holy Spirit). In this way they were purified and could perform their service in the tabernacle without being slain by the most Holy God.

              But when they left the tabernacle there was always a chance they might become unclean through contact with an unclean situation or object. That would mean that they were then unclean and unable to carry out their service in the Holy place. For this reason the ordinance of the ashes of the red heifer was given, to restore a clean status before God.

              The ashes of the red heifer were a memorial before God of the sacrifice for purification that had been made outside the camp of an offering without blemish. A shadow of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ the Lamb of God outside the gates of Jerusalem which took away the sins of the world.

              In breaking the bread in memorial to the body of Christ broken for us and drinking the cup in memorial of the blood shed for the remission – removal – of our sins we have the opportunity to examine ourselves, confess our sins and know that the blood of Jesus Christ, God’s Son, cleanses us from all iniquity. Thereby restoring a clean conscience to those called to serve the Living God.

1 Corinthians 11:17 Now in giving these instructions I do not praise you, since you come together not for the better but for the worse.  For first of all, when you come together as a church (an assembly), I hear that there are divisions among you, and in part I believe it.  For there must also be factions among you, that those who are approved may be recognized among you. Therefore when you come together in one place, it is not to eat the Lord's Supper. For in eating, each one takes his own supper ahead of others; and one is hungry and another is drunk. What! Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church (assembly) of God and shame those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you in this? I do not praise you.

              For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread;  and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”  In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death till He comes.

Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.  But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.  For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep.  For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged.  But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world.  Therefore, my brethren, when you come together to eat, wait for one another.

The above is a good account of disciples of Jesus Christ assembling together in order to share a meal together and to break bread in remembrance of the Lord’s death as commanded by Jesus Himself. It was to be done in the context of a shared meal – doing it for one another.

Not a religious observance or ritual but a simple act of discerning Christ’s body and blood by which we can have propitiation for our sins.

              1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.  My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.  And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.

 

The third instruction to be observed was prayer. Jesus had taught His disciples how to pray. It is Christ’s intention that His disciples united in Him ask the Father in His name and receive the things asked for as we saw in John: 15  ‘You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. These things I command you, that you love one another.’

Matthew 6:5 “And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you (singular) pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you (singular) openly. And when you (plural) pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. Therefore do not be like them. For your (plural) Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. In this manner, therefore, pray:

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.  And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.”

Jesus first warns His disciples about wrong ways to pray, the wrong attitude to pray in. Praying for dramatic effect upon others. Praying rehearsed pre-prepared scripts that are supposedly effective ways of praying similar to incanting a magic phrase in some religions and superstitions.

The last thing Jesus intended was for His guidelines on the manner of prayer to become a rehearsed script to be chanted in unison. Rather these are His guidelines for how the disciples of Jesus Christ should pray.

Our Father in heaven.

We must know Who we are addressing in prayer; His relationship with us who are born from above. We are not to pray to the air. Nor to an impersonal God Who has no relationship with us. Being in heaven He has all authority and power. He is the only God and Father of all born of water and of the Spirit. As His children we can together have special boldness to approach Him on His throne.

Hallowed be Your name.

Zechariah 14:9 And the LORD shall be King over all the earth. In that day it shall be—“The LORD is one,” And His name one.

Our first request should concern the sacredness, sanctity and fame of the name of God, ‘I AM Salvation’ = Yah’ishua = Jesus. The name given by the Father to the Christ which is above every other name, both in heaven, on earth and under the earth. The only name in which there is salvation. Which name is hallowed, made sacred and known through signs and wonders done in His name to validate the message of repentance and remission of sins in His name declared by His servants.

              Your kingdom come.

Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder.

And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom,

To order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever.

The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

              Jesus taught His disciples to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. Everything else is passing away. This eternal kingdom is manifested in righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Jesus taught His disciples that it was the Fathers good pleasure to give them the kingdom which we experience through the indwelling Holy Spirit. The reality of the kingdom of God is manifested through signs and wonders done in the name of Jesus Who is the Christ – the anointed king. Where demons are cast out and sick people healed in the name of Jesus Christ  the kingdom of God has come.

              Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

The disciples were called to leave all and follow Jesus, being taught by Him and serving Him as He gave them instructions. Jesus gave parables and stories to demonstrate the importance of His servants carrying out their duties towards Him. He made it clear that He expects to find His servants engaged in carrying out their duties when He returns. For God’s will to be done His people must be willing in the day of His power and listening for His commands. Jesus made it clear that whatever good we do for our brothers and sisters we do it for Him.

Give us this day our daily bread.

Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. We are participants in the new covenant in which God writes His laws on our hearts by His Holy Spirit. If we have ears to hear we will receive each day the word direct from God by His Spirit which is able to save our souls.

And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 

To examine ourselves daily, confess our faults to our Father and know that the blood of Jesus Christ God’s Son cleanses us from all sin. Knowing that if we do not forgive those who have offended us neither will God forgive us. This is an opportunity to remove obstacles to good relationships in the body of Christ and to renew a clean conscience towards God.

And do not lead us into temptation,

Matthew 26:41 “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

Jesus wants us to be aware of temptation that is common to every man because of our flesh.

1 Corinthians 10:12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

But deliver us from the evil (one).

Evil is everywhere. Mostly it is within the heart of man.

Matthew 15:18 “But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.”

God gives grace to the humble but opposes the proud. When we are aware that in our flesh there dwells no good thing we throw ourselves on the sure mercies of God.

For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.

              We sum up that we are speaking the One Who has the kingdom, that it is not ours. That all power in heaven and on earth belongs to Jesus Christ and not to us. That all glory belongs to Him who has loved us and washed us from sin, not to us.

Isaiah 42:8 I AM the Lord God, that is My name; And My glory I will not give to another, nor My praise to carved images.

 

              To discuss this or any other matter regarding the good news of Jesus Christ please email;  

Colin Thompson, Gateshead, England.

Comments welcome by email to colin@followingjesuschrist.co.uk

Other material on site at http://www.followingjesuschrist.co.uk/