Passage: Luke 11
v1-13 - Chapter 11 begins with Jesus' famous teaching on prayer. It's from the Lord's Prayer that we derive the AAA Prayer pattern: - Acknowledge who God is: Our Father in heaven, whose name is holy - Align your life with God's will: Your kingdom come and will be done; lead us away from temptation - Ask for what you want: Daily bread and forgiveness of sins. Jesus goes on to provide three classic pictures of prayer: a friend asking for bread at midnight (v5–8), a person knocking on a door (v9–10), and a child asking for something from his father (v11–13).
v14-28 - There doesn't seem to be a connection between the first section of the chapter and Jesus' argument with the Pharisees, as He refutes their assertion that Jesus uses demonic power to cast out demons.
v29-32 - Jesus says that his generation is evil for continually asking for signs rather than believing the evidence before them. People of the past, even foreigners, have believed without signs. As a result, only the “sign of Jonah” (i.e., the resurrection) will be given to them.
v33-36 - Jesus’ teaching about the lamp of the body shows that God’s light has come into the world through Jesus, but one’s spiritual condition depends on how one receives the light.
v37-57 - Jesus unloads on the hypocrisy and shallowness of the Pharisees and religious lawyers who put on a shiny veneer of godliness, but "inside you are full of greed and wickedness (v39)." Not only were they corrupting themselves, but they're also crushing those who follow them.
Old Testament Reference -
Nehemiah 1:5-11 is a randomly selected prayer from the Old Testament. See if you can identify the AAA elements that Jesus teaches in the Lord's Prayer in Nehemiah's prayer. Use the comment box to suggest another Old Testament prayer that fits the AAA pattern (there's lots of them!).
Use the comment box below to discuss one or more of these questions.
What do the various examples Jesus gives in v5-13 about audacious asks teach you about how to pray? How does the AAA prayer pattern that Jesus sets for us keep us from abusing Jesus' command to 'ask audaciously?'
What words would you use to describe Jesus' emotions as He chewed out the Pharisees and lawyers in v37-52? How does this episode, and others like it in the gospels, change the conventional opinion most people have about what Jesus was like?
Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Your Father, who is in heaven and who's name is holy;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that your desires are aligned with God's kingdom and that His will is being done in your life;
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: After acknowledging and aligning, ask audaciously.