In this section of the Baptist Larger Catechism, we conclude our discussion on the Lord’s Prayer. These questions address the final four petitions and the conclusion in the Lord’s Prayer. These questions are an expansion of questions 114 – 118 in the Keach Catechism. The extended responses are based on Questions 192 – 196 in the Westminster Larger Catechism.
As before, feel free to comment on the questions below.
Q. 185: What do we pray for in the third petition?
A: In the third petition, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven,1 we acknowledge that we and all humans are by nature not only completely incapable of and unwilling to know and to do the will of God2 but are actively prone to rebel against His Word,3 to be unhappy with and complain about his providence,4 and are naturally inclined to follow our own selfish desires and the directions of Satan.5 We pray then that God would by his Spirit remove from us and others all spiritual blindness,6 weakness,7 indisposition to spiritual activities,8 and perverseness of heart,9 and that he would by his grace make us willing to know, do, and submit to his will in every circumstance,10 with the same kind of humility,11 cheerfulness,12 faithfulness,13 steadfastness,14 zeal,15 sincerity,16 and constancy17 that the angels have in heaven.18
1. Matthew 6:10
3. Romans 8:7
14. Psalm 119:4-5
15. Romans 12:11
Q. 186: What do we pray for in the fourth petition?
A: In the fourth petition, Give us today our daily bread,1 we acknowledge that in Adam and by our own sin we have forfeited any right to all of the outward blessings of this life, that we deserve to be completely deprived of them by God and to have their use by us cursed,2 and that the outward blessings of this life are not in and of themselves capable of sustaining us,3 nor do we deserve4 or actually obtain them by our own efforts,5 but lust after,6 acquire,7 and use them in unlawful ways.8 We pray then for ourselves and others that both they and we may wait daily on God’s providential allowance of the outward blessings of this life and that, according to what his fatherly wisdom decides is best, we may lawfully enjoy his free gift of what is sufficient for us.9 We also pray that God would continue to bless us with sufficient worldly goods, that they would sustain our needs and be sanctified by us,10 that we would be satisfied with them,11 and that God would protect us from anything that undermines our support and sustenance in this world.12
1. Matthew 6:11
7. Hosea 12:7
8. James 4:3
11. 1 Timothy 6:6-8
12. Proverbs 30:8-9
Q. 187: What do we pray for in the fifth petition?
A: In the fifth petition, Forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors,1 we acknowledge that we and everyone else are guilty both of original sin and actual sins and are therefore debtors to God’s justice, and that neither we nor any other created being can make the least satisfaction for that debt.2 We pray then for ourselves and others that of his free grace and through the obedience and satisfaction of Christ, which is grasped and applied by faith, God would acquit us from the guilt and punishment of sin,3 accept us in the One he loves,4 continue his favor and grace to us,5 forgive our daily sins,6 and fill us with the peace and joy that come from the daily gift of growing assurance of being forgiven.7 We may more boldly make this request and be encouraged to expect to be forgiven, when and if we are assured in ourselves that we have genuinely, from the heart, forgiven others who have wronged us.8
1. Matthew 6:12
5. 2 Peter 1:2
Q. 188: What do we pray for in the sixth petition?
A: In the sixth petition, And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one,1 we acknowledge that God, who is completely wise, righteous, and gracious, may, for various holy and just purposes, ordain circumstances by which we become the target of temptations, are defeated, and temporarily taken captive by them;2 that Satan,3 the world,4 and our own sinful natures have a powerful potential to turn us aside from righteousness and trap us;5 and that even after our sins have been forgiven, we are naturally so depraved,6 spiritually weak, and inattentive to our spiritual condition7 that we are not only prey to temptations and willingly expose ourselves to them8 but are completely incapable of and unwilling to resist, get away from, or use them as opportunities for our spiritual growth9—and consequently we deserve to be left under their power.10 We pray then that God would so rule over the world and everyone in it,11 so curb our sinful natures12 and restrain Satan,13 so ordain all things,14 so endow and bless all the means of grace15 and sharpen our awareness in the use of them, that we and all his people may be providentially spared from being tempted to sin;16 or, if tempted, that his Spirit would powerfully support and enable us to resist during the time of our temptation;17 or, should we fall, that we would be raised again and restored,18 with the experience being thereby sanctified and used for our spiritual growth;19 and that our sanctification and salvation may be made complete,20 Satan trampled under our feet,21 and we become completely delivered from sin, temptation, and all evil, forever.22
1. Matthew 6:13
5. James 1:14
10. Psalm 81:11-12
18. Psalm 51:12
Q. 189: What does the conclusion of the Lord’s prayer teach us?
A: The conclusion of the Lord’s prayer, for Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever,1 teaches us that there must be substance to our petitions,2 that they are based not on any intrinsic worth in ourselves or any created being but on God himself,3 and that to our prayers should be added praise,4 which recognizes God alone as eternally sovereign, omnipotent, and gloriously excellent.5 In that respect, insofar as he is able and willing to help us,6 our faith makes us bold to plead with him that he will help us7 and calmly to count on him to answer our prayers.8 To show that we want to be heard and have confidence that we are heard, we say Amen.9
1. Matthew 6:13