The only way to make ultimate sense out of your story is to understand how it fits into the greater story of the purposes of God for the world. God takes great pleasure in pouring out His power on those who will dare to radically align their purposes with His. In the Lord’s Prayer, God presents us with a clear and compelling vision regarding His purposes for the world and for our lives in it. The history of Christianity as a global movement is rooted in the lives of countless ordinary people whose lives were swept up in God’s extraordinary purposes revealed in this prayer Jesus taught his followers.
What is God’s ultimate purpose for the world?
God’s purpose for creating the world and mankind is to glorify His name. Jesus gave his disciples a wonderful glimpse into this purpose when He taught them to pray saying, “Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed be your name” (Matt. 6:9). God’s ultimate purpose, for which we are to align both our prayers and lives, is for all creation and all the nations to bring glory and honor to Him.
How has God chosen to glorify His name?
Jesus answers this question for us in the Lord’s Prayer where he instructs us to pray, “May your kingdom come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matt 6:10) Here we learn that God has chosen to glorify his name through the coming of his kingdom in such a way that causes His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. God’s name is to be glorified by His invisible kingdom becoming visible in every sphere of life.
How has God chosen to cause His kingdom to come on earth?
God has ordained that his kingdom come with transforming power into every sphere of life primarily through his church. God works through all kinds of institutions and people. But the church is God’s primary instrument for making His “kingdom come and His will be done on earth as it is in Heaven” (Matthew 6:10). The most biblical and effective way to bring the gospel of God’s grace to the world is through starting, growing and multiplying churches among all nations.
How can we be empowered to see God glorified and His kingdom come through the global advancement of his church?
It’s only by the ministry of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8) through the power of the gospel (Rom 1:16). A deep understanding and appropriation of the gospel is absolutely necessary to have true passion and power for missions. What is needed today is a recovery of the gospel of the kingdom. The hope of this gospel is not merely our conversion but also our transformation into the image of Christ. Its purpose is not merely to forgive us, but also to change us into true worshippers of God, authentic lovers of people, and agents of gospel transformation in the world.
Pathway Learning Podcast: Join this choir of church leaders and sing the Lord's Prayer!
Click the Pathway Learning audio podcast below (4:12) to hear Steve Childers' concluding comments on the Lord's Prayer at the Desiring God Pastor's Conference in MN–followed by all the church leaders in attendance singing this prayer to God in worship. Your invited to join them.