The Son's Prayer

Posted By on Wednesday, April 04, 2018


1. What, concerning God, does Jesus reveal in the following phrases?
(1) “But thou,” v. 6 – The Father’s distinction. The heavenly Father differentiates between a true son and the religious hypocrite along with the unconverted heathen
(2) “When thou prayest,” v. 6 – The Father’s expectation. Jesus did not say “IF thou prayest,” but “WHEN thou prayest.” The heavenly Father expects that his children pray
(3) “Enter into thy closet,” v. 6 – The Father’s direction. The heavenly Father directs his children to seek a place of seclusion for their private prayers in contrast to the Pharisees who sought the public places
(4) “And when thou hast shut thy door,” v. 6 – The Father’s intimation. The heavenly Father intimates that real prayer involves wholehearted concentration and complete separation which leaves no opportunity for observation and no occasion for distraction
(5) “Pray to thy Father,” v. 6 – The Father’s exhortation. Since the end is not secured by the mere act of going into seclusion, the heavenly Father exhorts his sons to pray to him on the basis of their filial relationship to him by virtue of which they have corresponding privileges and the Father has corresponding obligations
(6) “Which is in secret,” v. 6 – The Father’s omnipresence. Though all others are excluded, the heavenly Father, who said, “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” (Jer. 23:24), is present with his praying child in the secret place wherever that may be and whatever that may be like
(7) “Which seeth in secret,” v. 6 – The Father’s observation. The heavenly Father, who said, “Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him?” (Jer. 23:24), also sees his praying child in the secret place of prayer, a child who may pray in full confidence that those who are seen by God have no need of being seen by men
(8) “Shall reward thee openly,” v. 6 – The Father’s disposition. The heavenly Father does not respond to a son’s legitimate need reluctantly or acquiesce to his request only grudgingly, but is kindly disposed for “He that spared not his own Son, . . . how shall he not with him freely give us all things?” Rom. 8:32
(9) “Be not ye therefore like unto them,” v. 8 – The Father’s admonition. Although the heavenly Father is the God of all flesh, he is the father only of those who believe. Therefore, since his children are not like the heathen in their relationship to God, they are not to be like them in their approach to God
(10) “For your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him,” v. 8 – The Father’s assurance. Since the heavenly Father is fully aware of his children’s needs before they even ask him, he is in no need of being informed ; and since he is a good Father, he does not need to be persuaded by a multitude of words

2. Comment on “pray to thy Father” in 6:6: This is not a mere matter of form, but a conscious reality of our sonship, an inner awareness given to us by the Spirit of adoption, Rom. 8:14-16