Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Vision (12.18.14): Give us this day our daily bread

Note:  Here are some abbreviated notes from the Sunday School Lesson back on November 30th on the fourth petition of the Lord’s Prayer:  “Give us this day our daily bread” (Matthew 6:11).

1.  Give:

We begin with the verb of petition “Give….”  This is not a demand and certainly not a command or ultimatum issued to God, even though the second person imperative verb (dos) is used, but a request.  It has more the sense: Lord, would you please remember to give or to provide for us that for which we are in need?

2.  Us:

This reminds us that this is a corporate prayer.  We are to pray not only for ourselves, or for our own family, but corporately for all, and especially for those of the household of faith (Gal 6:10).

3.  Our daily bread:

Thomas Vincent defines “daily bread” as meaning “all outward provision for our daily sustenance.”  So, what is meant by this is not merely food but it is representative of all our material and physical needs.  Our daily bread, thus, includes the food we put on the table, the clothing we wear, the shoes on our feet, the shelter in which we live, the heat and air that provides comfort, the cars we drive, etc.

 Thomas Watson:  “Oh, if God gives all, our eye-sight, our food, our clothing, let us sacrifice the chief praise to him.”

4.  This day:

The adverb here semeron literally means “today.” The idea here is that we need to ask day by day for God’s provision.  Consider that when the Israelites were in the wilderness, God provided for them just enough for each day, no more and no less (cf. Exodus 16:14-30).

When Elijah was fed by ravens by the brook Cherith by the Jordan, the ravens brought him bread and meat every morning and every evening (1 Kings 17:6).

Consider Jesus’ parable of the barn builder in Luke 12:13-21 and the teaching that follows in vv. 22-31.

This is not to say that the God forbids industry and saving (cf. Proverbs 24:27; 31:13-22, 27; 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12; 2 Thessalonians 3:7-12).
Indeed, what is warned against here is not industry or prosperity per se, but any striving that might tempt us to think we have received merely by our own efforts.  We are dependent upon the Lord day by day, every today, for his provision.

Thomas Watson:  “What is it to have food and want grace?  What is it to have the back clothed and the soul naked? ….  O therefore let us be earnest for spiritual mercies!  Lord, not only feed me, but sanctify me; give me rather a heart full of grace, than a house full of gold.”

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

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