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Hallowed Be Thy Name

The Lord's Prayer  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Series Review

What can I do for you? That’s what we ask when someone dies, someone loses their job. Someone has a serious illness. A divorce. A family tragedy. What can I do for you? How can I support you.
What do you think is the number one answer: Pray for me.
We can always pray. We can’t get their job back. Get their parents back. Make the pain go away. Solve their problem. But we can pray. Prayer, next to reading the Bible, is one of the most important things we do as a Christian. So important that one day the disciples said to Jesus, “Lord, teach us to pray.” Then Jesus answered them with what we know as the Lord’s prayer. It’s a model prayer. It’s a guideline. A template.
The trap of rote repetition. The National Anthem. Look around, and you see retired military who are deeply moved, and others who look distracted. In conversation, mouthing the words but their minds are elsewhere. Rote repetition.
This series is not just about the prayer we recite on Sunday. We’re not just going to break down each part of the Lord’s Prayer so we can know what it means. I want us to leave here knowing how to pray.
(When we are confused…hurting…we can know how to pray)
So how can I pray? How can I teach my kids to pray? It begins with…Our Father, who art in heaven.
The Lord’s Prayer begins with Our Father. Last week Rich Barney unpacked that for us. Jesus wants us to know that God is our father, so we can address him like we would a loving father: One who cares about what happened to us today. One who is delighted that you are visiting. One who is excited about spending time with you. One who wants to be with you all the time.
That can be challenging, if we have

Sermon Introduction

Matthew 6:9 NIV
“This, then, is how you should pray: “ ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
Matthew 6:
But then Jesus stops right after that and says, “But wait, he’s also holy.”
Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed by thy name.
Hallowed. That means holy. Holy is your name. Yes, God is a loving father, but at the same time He is holy, and we are to treat his name as holy when we pray. There’s an important balance when we talk to God.
(the side of you I can relate to: I can relate to you as a father, as a sports fan; the side of you I can’t; lost someone to cancer, law enforcement agent; a pastor? oh, let me tell you it’s great; )
There is a warm side of God that we an relate to - God wants us to relate to; but there is also a side to God that we can’t: God is holy. This sermon really comes down to one word: holy. Holy is your name. Hallowed by thy name. Just like the word Father, the word holy can transform the way you pray.

Y…H

What comes to your mind when you hear the words God is holy? For me, I think of behavior, actions, character. Morals.God’s actions are right. God’s motives are pure. God’s wisdom is perfect.

Y…H

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I was reading a book written by a Jewish author, and I kept running into this. I thought I knew what it was, but I asked a Jewish person what it was. He explained to me that it was the Hebrew name for God. But Jews are forbidden from speaking or writing God’s name, so they would write it in an abbreviated form.
I’m sure you know that Christians do not have an issue with speaking or writing God’s name. Listen to a message or read a portion of the Bible and that becomes apparent. But the explanation by my Jewish friend taught me something that day: God’s name is not just a name, like yours and mine. God’s name is not just a word alongside others. God’s name is not to be used for common purposes. God’s name is holy. Hallowed by thy name. We have to be careful how we use God’s name in our everyday speech, and in our prayers.
I w
So many of them I can see in the words that have come out of my mouth. Losing my temper and saying something mean to my kids. Ever use sarcasm or dry humor and it hurt someone? Discouraging someone with the wrong kind of criticism. We can do so much damage with our mouths.
So in the words of my Jewish friend, we can be reckless with our speech, so just don’t say God’s name at all. I wouldn’t go that far, because God is a father and invites us to call him by name. But take care how you use God’s name.
Hallowed by thy name. Holy is your name.
What comes to your mind when you hear the words God is holy? For me, I think of behavior, actions, character. Morals.God’s actions are right. God’s motives are pure. God’s wisdom is perfect.
What comes to your mind when you hear the word holy? For me, I think of behavior. Morals.
holy because I the Lord am holy, as it says
1 Peter 1:16 NIV
for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
We pray like we are talking to a loving Father, but we are also talking to someone who is holy.
God’s actions are right. God’s motives are pure. God’s wisdom is perfect.
But here’s another way to think of that word holy: it means set apart. Special. Not for common use. Look at this verse:
Exodus 20:8 NIV
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
The Sabbath. It’s not an ordinary day in the Old Testament. Don’t work. Don’t play. Set is aside for rest and worship. I had a professor who was rigid about the Christian Sabbath. He wouldn’t mow his lawn or do work around the house. A few times we drove by his house to see if we could catch him cleaning the gutters or tinkering with his car. Never did. That day for him, and the Sabbath for Jews was not just another day. It was a day dedicated to the worship of God.
Advent and Lent are holy seasons. They are not ordinary. Holy Week is not an ordinary week. God’s name is not an ordinary name. His name is holy. Hallowed by thy name.
Think of Birthdays and anniversaries. They are not ordinary days. Objects can also be holy.
The name of God. Not an ordinary name. It is a holy name because God is holy.
If we embrace the fact that God is our father, it will change the way we pray. If we understand God’s holiness, it will affect the way we pray.
If we embrace the fact that God is our father, it will change the way we pray. If we understand God’s holiness, it will affect the way we pray. Here’s a passage that illustrates God’s holiness:
Rather than break down the word holy, I want to read a story from the Bible that illustrates God’s holiness. Don’t just read this or hear this: try to imagine this scene:
Isaiah 6:1–8 NIV
In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke. “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.” Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
What an awesome scene, and what a great picture of God’s holiness. I want us to notice 3 things about God’s holiness that can affect the way we pray: Sacredness, Sin and Service.

Sacred

There are so many things that describe this awesome scene: The train of God’s robe fills the temple. This is a sign of God’s majesty. Angels in the presence of God covering their eyes in the presence of God. We read they were flying, lots of fascinating things to explore; but more importantly they are saying:
There are so many things that describe this awesome scene: The train of God’s robe fills the temple. This is a sign of God’s majesty. Angels in the presence of God covering their eyes in the presence of God. We read they were flying, lots of fascinating things to explore; but more importantly they are saying:
There are so many things that describe this awesome scene: The train of God’s robe fills the temple. This is a sign of God’s majesty. Angels in the presence of God covering their eyes in the presence of God. We read they were flying, lots of fascinating things to explore; but more importantly they are saying:
Isaiah 6:3 NIV
And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”
The importance of repetition. what do we do when we want to emphasize something that’s important: italics, caps, repetition
For me, if I can imagine this scene when I pray, it changes the way I pray. It keeps me from becoming too casual. It helps me remember that God is powerful. But most importantly, it helps keep me from being at the center of my prayer. It sets the one for my prayer.

(e.g. college friend, meeting future inlaws, the vase which was an urn, it was not an ordinary vase, but it was sacred).
(e.g. college friend, meeting future inlaws, the vase which was an urn, it was not an ordinary vase, but it was sacred).
When we pray, we are not in an ordinary place (not moving around during the prayer). And when we pray, “Lord,” we are not using an ordinary name because we are not praying to an ordinary person. We are praying to a God who is holy and righteous.

Sin

Sin

We read in Scripture of people encountering the presence of God. They don’t always clap their hands. They don’t make casual comments about God.
These angelic beings are shielding their faces. Isaiah falls down on his face in despair. When he realizes he is in the presence of a holy God, the next thing he realizes is that he is not worthy to be there.
Often in the Bible people like Isaiah fall down on their faces in despair.
Isaiah 6:5 NIV
“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.”
The same can happen to us: when we realize we are in sacred space in the presence of a holy God, we realize our own sinfulness.
white glove - holiness illuminates sin (I’m okay - God’s holiness says we’re not okay)
white glove - holiness illuminates sin (I’m okay - God’s holiness says we’re not okay)
It’s hard to be careful in our speech, am I right? I think of some of the biggest mistakes and sins I’ve committed, things I’ve done to another person. Things I have failed to do. My thoughts, which only God knows.
A district superintendent or bishop visiting the congregation.
A district superintendent or bishop visiting the congregation.
It’s hard to be careful in our speech, am I right? I think of some of the biggest mistakes and sins I’ve committed, things I’ve done to another person. Things I have failed to do. My thoughts, which only God knows.
So many of them I can see in the words that have come out of my mouth. Losing my temper and saying something mean to my kids. Ever use sarcasm or dry humor and it hurt someone? Discouraging someone with the wrong kind of criticism. We can do so much damage with our mouths.
When I pray, hallowed be thy name I am reminded that God is holy, which means I also realize that I am not. I remember that the very beginning of my prayer that I am a person who sins. I am a person who messes up, hurts God and hurts other people, and I desperately need God to forgive me.
This is why so many prayers begin with a confession of sin.

Service

prayer is not just for consolation - God comfort me, do something for me; God help that person;
prayer should drive us into service
Isaiah 6:8 NIV
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
We pray to a holy God who graciously invites us into his holy presence, forgives us, and sends us into service.
one way to measure the effectiveness of prayer: are we being driven into service;

Conclusion

Praying the right way, not just learning a new word.
What difference does this make in prayer? How does it change the way we pray?
A Surprising Request. Notice that this is a petition or a request. It is not a declaration (as I thought it was for years). It is a request to God that he would see to it that his own name be hallowed.
Treating God as Holy. Teaching my kids to pray. Modeling prayer for my kids. Emphasizing the seriousness of prayer.
Treating God as Holy
Our Attitudes
The Way We Experience God
The Way We Serve God
So as we remember this morning that we pray to a Father, a parent. A parent who cares deeply about us. But this father is holy. Therefor, His name is to be treated as holy. Let us pray the prayer that Jesus taught us to pray:
So as we remember this morning that we pray to a Father, a parent. A parent who cares deeply about us. But this father is holy. Therefor, His name is to be treated as holy. Let us pray the prayer that Jesus taught us to pray:
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,
For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
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