The Lord’s Prayer, like God’s Word, teaches us that there is still much for us to learn, much for us to experience in that dynamic interaction between God’s Word and our daily lives. Whether it’s the Old Testament or the New, God’s Word always leads us to the cross.
Tonight our focus is on, “Give us this day our daily bread.”Here Luther writes, “God certainly gives daily bread to everyone without our prayers, even to all evil people, but we pray in this petition that God would lead us to realize this and to receive our daily bread with thanksgiving.”
God generously provides for us. We should remember that He has given us all that we have, and give Him thanks and praise for what He gives us each day. Most of the time we take God totally for granted, assuming that He will always be there for us and willing to provide those things that keep us alive and going.
Once again Luther writes, “Daily Bread includes everything that has to do with the support and needs of the body, such as food, drink, clothing, shoes, house, home, land, animals, money, goods, a devout husband or wife, devout workers, devout and faithful rulers, good government, good weather, peace, health, self control, good reputation, good friends, faithful neighbors, and the like.”
It’s good for us to be mindful of these things, specifically what “Daily Bread” is, and where it comes from.
As He sat with His disciples, Jesus took bread, broke it, and gave it to them saying, “Take and eat; this is my body given for you.” What He said was true – it was bread. It looked like bread, felt, smelled and tasted like bread. But it was also His Body, soon to be beaten, battered, broken, and bleeding on the cross. That is what was offered to the Father as full and final payment for your sins, and for mine.
On that hillside overlooking the Sea of Galilee, Jesus was looking ahead to His suffering and death on the cross. But the truly amazing thing is that He was, at the same time, thinking of you.
Galatians 4:4-6, “When the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as His children. And because you are His children, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into your hearts saying, ‘Abba! Father!’”
And first John 3:1, “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.” “‘For I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me,’
says the Lord God Almighty.”
There is no doubt about it – God loves you! It pleases Him to care for you. God is pleased to provide everything you need in this life – everything from toothpaste and coffee filters for your body and earthly life, to forgiveness and eternal life for your soul and your spiritual life.
We close with prayer. “Heavenly Father, guard and keep us from the assaults of the devil, the deception of the world, and the desires of our sinful nature. Protect us that we may not be deceived or misled by lies, be overcome by despair, or be seduced into a way of life that leads ultimately to death. Shield us by Your grace and strengthen us with Your Word and Spirit that we may withstand every attack and win the ultimate and eternal victory. Through Jesus Christ, our brother and our Lord. Amen!