HALLOWED BE THY NAME
It is unfortunate that some passages are so familiar that most Christians have memorized the words, but fail to realize the intense and important meaning of the words. As a result, we quote such passages and do not get the benefit of nor express the great thoughts that they contain. The Lord’s Prayer is a typical example of this. It is often quoted en masse, and the ones mouthing it never give a thought to the incredibly important words they are quoting.
A shocking example of this is the part of the prayer that says, “Hallowed be Thy name”. These words are not for our benefit, but instead, they are a glorious statement of praise for the Creator of the Universe. Prayer ought to include more than a petition for some need we have or some desire we want to be granted. Prayer is primarily a recognition of the very real existence of God, and His eternal presence with us. The privilege to stand in His throne room and realize that He is a loving Father should also make every prayer one of praise and adoration. He is not an angry tyrant ready to condemn us. He is a loving and merciful Father who wants to bless us if we will come to Him in faith and ask. Such a One should cause every prayer to be a prayer of thanksgiving and glorious praise.
This concept is conveyed by Jesus when He included the words, “Hallowed be Thy name”. It was a phrase of worship and adoration to the One who is responsible for our very being. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. He did not have to, but His loving heart caused Him to create the earth for a dwelling place, and then He created man to share a loving eternity with Him. For such love and benevolence, we should shout His praise. Then when man, given the power of choice, made the wrong choice, God, instead of venting anger on Him, made the incredible sacrifice of His Son as a means of forgiveness for man. Such incredible mercy should call forth magnificent words of praise with every prayer we offer.
The bottom line is that prayer is a form of worship. When it is only for our selfish benefit, like the Pharisees of old, it becomes an act of rebellious denial and brings upon us the condemnation of Heaven, as Jesus said when speaking of the prayer of the Pharisees.
“Hallowed be Thy name”, or words like it, should be a part of every prayer. Only then will our prayers be a form of worship, and only then will they get the loving attention of the Creator of us all.