Father, hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,
For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us.
And lead us not into temptation.’” [Luke 11]
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“Pray, then, in this way:
‘Our Father who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
‘Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
‘Give us this day our daily bread.
‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’] [Matthew 6:9-13]
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We are exploring the unfurling of a wondrous Rose, in our gardens of spirit, considering the Lord’s gift to our lives of the Lord’s Prayer. We have acknowledged that there are two iterations of the Lord’s Prayer. Jesus gave an “amplified version” to the Multitudes in Sermon on the Mount, and a much leaner version in the Gospel of Luke to the Disciples. We have noted that “thee, thou, thy” is a more familiar form in older English, than “you, your” as we use the words today.
As we look at the Lord’s Prayer, one phrase per post, today we will consider:
“And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.” [Multitude’s Version]
“And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us.” [Disciples’ Version]
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Just a couple quick notes on this, and then examine what the Lord reveals in your own spirit with your own Rose. These two verses are truly different in the places the words differ. For one thing, that “forgive” is again one of those different “magic Greek thingy words”, that is not just a petition or command, but rather a statement of action throughout time, and in range of scope.
There are two notable differences between these two teachings. For one thing, the Multitudes version uses an actual “debt” word that implies a financial obligation. It reads something like “release us from what we owe to others, to the extent that we release others from what they owe us.” The Disciples’ version is nothing like that. First, the word “sin” there is actually “sin”, “falling short-ness”. The “debt” word is debt, yes. But rather than “to the extent that we release” (Multitude text), the Disciples’ form is more directive… “release us from our sins, because we release everyone who owes us.” The phrasing is much more stark… much more framed as “expectation”.
I suspect that this is the first really confrontive challenge any Christian faces in truly embracing Jesus. Here is an essential “requirement” of what Don Merritt has written eloquently on as the “counter-intuitive”. The internal sense of sin, guilt, or shame is one of the deepest sources of pain any of us ever know. Freedom from this pain passes through the mist of “forgiveness”. But Jesus is very clear here, that to experience the release of forgiveness, one must first execute the release of forgiving.
Contemplate your Rose. Savor its aroma. Embrace the freedom Jesus offers, realizing that to embrace Him and His love, our hands must first be empty of the burdens of others’ offenses.
Grace to thee, Gentle Reader.