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Grace and God’s Kingdom in the Lord’s Prayer

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This is the fourth in a 7-part series on the Lord’s Prayer. You may want to start with the first one, “Our Father In Heaven,” before continuing with the others.

When you teach your child to pray for God’s kingdom to come, you are teaching him to do something that is contrary to the nature with which he was born. You see, the little “kingdom of self” with which we were all born is radically opposed to the kingdom of God. Think seriously about this statement. The flesh stands in violent opposition to the purposes of God. Read once again what the flesh is all about in Galatians 5:19-21:

The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

The qualities of the flesh rule the kingdom of self (Ephesians 2:1-3). As Paul warns, the kingdom of God will not be populated by those who still bow to the kingdom of self. So when you ask for God’s kingdom to come, you are actually making a declaration of war against your own personal kingdom of the flesh. To make this petition without asking for God’s grace is not wise. This thought is clearly addressed at the end of the prayer, when you are instructed to ask for forgiveness for your sins.

God’s kingdom is a place of grace, beauty, love and power. This reality in itself makes God’s kingdom radically different from your own and radically different from your child’s as well.

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