Today’s devotion builds on the thoughts from Sunday’s Sermon – Week 6 of the Lord’s Prayer Series “Temptation & Evil” (LISTEN HERE).
“For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever and ever, Amen.”
Did you know that these words which we commonly use to conclude the Lord’s Prayer were not part of the original teaching from Jesus?
In dusting off my church history, I found that this doxology (statement of praise) was included in The Didache which was perhaps one of the first catechisms of the church written in the late first to second century AD. It seems this doxology was accepted much earlier in the eastern part of Christianity and then much later in the western church.
While perhaps its history of use is a bit vague, it is certainly appropriate to end a prayer with the content and magnitude of the Lord’s Prayer with this statement of praise directed to the Father.
Consider all the petitions prayed prior to this statement:
- Hallowed be your name
- Your kingdom come
- Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
- Give us today our daily bread
- Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us
- Lead us not into temptation
- But deliver us from evil.
None of these requests would come to reality unless our heavenly Father is also the ruler of all (yours is the kingdom). In making this statement, the pray’er is acknowledging the reality this is God’s world. His kingdom is the rule of the Gospel in the hearts of people and his rule over all things on behalf of the Church, his people. Without the Lord being the King of kings, the ability for these petitions to be answered would fall apart quickly.
The doxology acknowledges that the Lord has all power. How else can we pray with confidence if the Lord does not have power to provide our physical needs, power to forgive our sins, and power to overcome sin and evil? He does. Here’s just a couple passages that acknowledge the power of God.
Jesus to those skeptical of his power to forgive, showed his power to forgive by also healing: Luke 5:24 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”
He overcame the power of the devil. Hebrews 2:14 Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.
The doxology acknowledges that all glory is directed to and deserved by the Father as well. After all as the one who is willing to hear this prayer and answer it for our benefit on this earth and eternally in heaven, why wouldn’t our almighty, gracious God NOT deserve all the glory in the world?
And then we end with a confident, “Amen.” Yes, it shall be so.
Just as we started, so we acknowledge that as earthly fathers know how to give good things to their children, so our heavenly Father, to whom we pray, knows how to give us all good things.
For yours is the kingdom, and the power and the glory, forever and ever, AMEN!
Apply: As you think of God’s kingdom, power and glory, how has each manifested in your life?
Prayer: Father in heaven, thank you for your Son who taught us this prayer. In your mercy, forgive us when we have made the Lord’s Prayer and empty statement of words. In your grace, keep in our hearts and minds all the realities for which you invite us and encourage us to pray. Yours truly is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever and ever, AMEN.