Prayer- Matthew 6:5-15
If God knows what we need before we ask, why do we still need to pray?
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.
6 “But you, when you 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 openly.
7 “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
9 “In this manner, therefore, pray: our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13 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.
14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
15 “But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Food for Thought
1. Why should we pray at all?
2. What religious discipline do you consider to be valuable and why?
3. What is the point of praying in tongues if we don’t understand what we are saying?
4. According to Jesus, what wrong motivation prompts people to pray? (6:5)
5. What name did Jesus call those who pray for show and why? (6:5)
6. Where do hypocrites prefer to do their praying? (6:5)
7. What kind of reward will religious showmanship bring? (6:5)
8. How did Jesus command his followers to pray? (6:6)
9. What type of reward will humility in prayer bring? (6:6)
10. What does Jesus have to say about repetitive or long, windy prayers? (6:7)
11. To whom does Jesus tell us to pray? (6:9)
12. What should be our attitude towards life’s necessities? (6:11)
13. What should be our attitude towards those who have wronged us? (6:12)
14. What should be our attitude toward temptation? (6:13)
15. What is behind Jesus’ insistence that prayer you be in secret?
16. What aspects of our faith should be public?
17. What common or overused phrases do you hear frequently repeated in people’s prayers?
18. If God knows what we need before we ask, why do we still need to pray?
19. If Jesus commands us to pray in secret, is there any value in public prayer?
20. Why do people feel uncomfortable praying out loud?
21. When you pray in front of a group, how can you concentrate fully on what you are saying to God rather than how your prayers sound to others?
22. Why do we often use special language or words for talking to God?
23. Should we tell people we are praying for them?
24. How can we pray with importunity without being repetitive?
25. Why did Jesus pray all night (Lk 6:12) and then tell us to pray with few words?
26. What is the place of agreement prayers in Jesus’ prayer prescriptions?
27. Why do we need to pray for God’s will to be done on earth?
28. What is the will of God that we want to be done on earth?
29. What debts do we owe God?
30. Are we supposed to cancel the debts of those who owe us money?
31. Why should we pray that God should not lead us into temptation?
32. Why should we say “for yours is the kingdom, the power and the glory forever?”
33. Should we end our prayers by saying “Amen?”
34. What changes do you need to make in your prayer life?
35. What strained relationship will you seek to repair this week by forgiving an offence?