The Mountain: Good Praying

Jesus next warned against praying with strings attached — in contrast to good praying (45):

When you pray, don’t make a big show of that, either. Because hypocrites want people to praise them when they pray, that’s all the praise they’ll get.

Instead, when you pray, you should normally do it privately.  And God, who sees what you do privately, will both praise & reward you.

Private Prayer

When you do pray with other believers, don’t use a lot of meaningless words.  That’s what pagans do; they think that their fake gods will hear them because their prayers are so long!

But God already knows what you need before you ask him.  So try keeping it simple & praying together like this:

Praying Together

God, our father in heaven, we want to honor your holy name with our lives; we want you to be our king; we want your will to be done in our lives!

Please, give us today whatever we truly need for today.

Please, help us forgive the wrong things that other people have done to us. Please, forgive the wrong things that we have done to you.

Please, don’t put our faith to the test. Please, keep us safe from your enemies.

Jesus concluded by emphasizing that we must forgive to be forgiven:

If you forgive other people the wrong things they have done to you, God will also forgive you.

forgive

But, if you don’t forgive other people, then God won’t forgive you.

 

(45) Matthew 6:5-15