“Our Father which art in heaven.” Matthew 6:9
Suggested Further Reading: Luke 11:1-13
A child, even though he is erring, always expects his father will hear what he has to say. “Lord, if I call thee King thou wilt say, “Thou art a rebellious subject; get thee gone.” If I call thee Judge thou wilt say, “Be still, or out of thine own mouth will I condemn thee.” If I call thee Creator thou wilt say unto me, “It repenteth me that I made man upon the earth.” If I call thee my Preserver thou wilt say unto me, “I have preserved thee, but thou hast rebelled against me.” But if I call thee Father, all my sinfulness doth not invalidate my claim. If thou be my Father, then thou lovest me; if I be thy child, then thou wilt regard me, and poor though my language be, thou wilt not despise it.” If a child were called upon to speak in the presence of a number of persons, how very much alarmed he would be lest he should not use right language. I may sometimes feel concerned when I have to address a mighty audience, lest I should not select choice words, full well knowing that if I were to preach as I never shall, like the mightiest of orators, I should always have enough of carping critics to rail at me. But if I had my Father here, and if you could all stand in the relationship of father to me, I should not be very particular what language I used. When I talk to my Father I am not afraid he will misunderstand me; if I put my words a little out of place he understands my meaning somehow. When we are little children we only prattle; still our father understands us.
For meditation: The Father always heard the Lord Jesus Christ (John 11:41,42); by the working of the Holy Spirit he can understand us even when we cannot understand ourselves (Romans 8:26,27). Never be afraid to go to him in prayer because words fail you.
Sermon no. 213
12 September (1858)