Pray then like this: “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 also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. – Matthew 6:9-13 ESV
This was the Pattern of prayer that Jesus gave us. Jesus is the gift of Christmas and He is the fulfillment of the LORDS prayer. Jesus is; “autobasileia,” meaning “the kingdom in person.” Jesus said, “The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or, ‘There it is!’ For behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst.” (Luke 17:20-21) But if I cast out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. (Luke 11:20) The Pharisees ask Jesus when the kingdom of God is coming. They were looking for a conquering Messiah or king. But Jesus’ answer surprised them. The Greek word that is translated as “midst” has the meaning of “among” or “in the midst of.” So what was the meaning of Jesus’ reply? He told them that the kingdom was already among them, but not within them. Since they were rejecting Jesus, it is clear that they were not citizens of the kingdom; and since scripture never speaks of the kingdom being inside someone, the kingdom was not in them either. But the kingdom was among them in the sense that Jesus, the King of the kingdom was living among them! The kingdom of God has come, it is the incarnation of Jesus- His will was done!
Leader, Stephen Covey was quoted as saying, For me, the Lord’s Prayer, “Give us this day our daily bread” doesn’t just refer to the physical food necessary to get through the day. It means, “give me this day Christ, the bread of life, give me his atonement, so that this day I might turn the other cheek, I might go the second mile, I might feel to forgive as he forgave the Roman soldiers while he hung on the cross. This is the gifts of Christmas, not only was Jesus the Kingdom of God in person He is also our provision. He gives us our daily bread; He gives us His atonement; satisfaction or reparation for a wrong or injury; amends. The Hebrew Word for atonement is “kipur” with the verb form being “kaphar” and means “to cover, purge, make reconciliation” and “to cover with or coat with pitch.” That last definition is very interesting because the same Hebrew word used for pitch is “kaphar” and that is what the Ark was covered with. Make yourself an ark of gopher wood. In Genesis 6:14 it is written; Make rooms in the ark, and cover it with pitch inside and outside. This is another gift of Christmas; we have been covered!
Conduit, as we celebrate Christmas today are you going to be preoccupied with the number of gifts under the tree, or are you content with the gifts that Christ gave us through His incarnation? Included in the gift of Christ is also the forgiveness of all of our debts and the one who LEADS US. Leaders, and managers are paid more money than regular employees because of the added responsibility. Are you wrapped up in the gifts under your tree or are you content with the gifts that the ‘Babe in the manger’ has brought you? Are you still wanting of this world, or is Jesus your portion? Psalms 73:26: “My flesh and my heart fails, but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.” Benson’s commentary puts it this way: Lamentations 3:24-26. The Lord is my portion, saith my soul — An interest in the favor and love of God, and His presence with me, my heart tells me, is the best inheritance. And, possessing these, I have that which is sufficient to balance all my troubles, and make up all my losses. For, while portions on earth are empty and perishing things, God is an all-sufficient and durable portion, a portion forever. Therefore, will I hope in him — I will stay myself upon him, and encourage myself in him, when all other supports and encouragements fail me. As you celebrate Christmas today, remind yourself that what you get under the tree is nothing compared to what you have received from the birth and acceptance of Jesus as your Lord, your savior, your portion! Merry Christmas for Jesus is the gift of Christmas!