Tonight, we are gathering to conclude our study of the Lord’s Prayer. We will look at the doxology and have a general discussion of the Prayer. If you have the opportunity think through each of the lines of the prayer once more and how you can make those lines more personal to you.
The doxology, most likely, was not originally part of Matthew’s gospel. It was the Jewish, and later Christian, practice of ending any formal prayer with a doxology – which is simply a short concluding hymn of praise. In 1 Chronicles 29:11-12, David concludes a blessing with the words: “Thine, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and thou art exalted as head above all.” In the New Testament, we see doxologies in 1 Tim. 1:17: “To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen”; 1 Tim. 6:16: “To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen”; and Jude 25 “To the only God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.” The earliest liturgical manual we have, The Didache from c.100, does include a doxology after the Lord’s Prayer, and it is generally thought that the doxology’s use within the liturgy eventually led to its insertion in Matthew’s gospel.
As to the meaning of the doxology, John Chrysostom in his Homily 19 on Matthew says:
Does it not then follow, that if His be the kingdom, we should fear no one, since there can be none to withstand, and divide the empire with him. For when He says, Yours is the kingdom, He sets before us even him, who is warring against us, brought into subjection, though he seem to oppose, God for a while permitting it. For in truth he too is among God’s servants, though of the degraded class, and those guilty of offense; and he would not dare set upon any of his fellow servants, had he not first received license from above. And why say I, his fellow servants? Not even against swine did he venture any outrage, until He Himself allowed him(Luke 8:32) nor against flocks, nor herds, until he had received permission from above (Job 1:12).
And the power, says He. Therefore, manifold as your weakness may be, you may of right be confident, having such a one to reign over you, who is able fully to accomplish all, and that with ease, even by you.
And the glory, forever. Amen. Thus He not only frees you from the dangers that are approaching you, but can make you also glorious and illustrious. For as His power is great, so also is His glory unspeakable, and they are all boundless, and no end of them. Do you see how He has by every means anointed His Champion, and has framed Him to be full of confidence?
Dinner is at 6. Menu is sausage and peppers with Italian salad. Discussion about 6:45. Hope to see you here.