The Lord's Prayer
Hallowed be Your Name
Our Father, which is in Heaven, hallowed be Your Name. What does it mean to hallow God's Name? Is the word associated somehow with haloes? A halo is a little ring or a circle of light that some artists paint around the heads of saints, angels, and of the Lord.
I don't approve of it because Yeshua never went around with a light shining around His head. Maybe the Pharisees would have recognized that He was the Anointed if He had, but He refused to give the Jews that kind of sign. It was only James, John, and Peter who saw Him transfigured, and He told them to not tell anyone about it until after He was risen from the dead.
The only sign that He said He would give the Jews that He is the Messiah is that of Him coming to life of His own accord after three days. He needed them to doubt that He was the Messiah, so that they would fulfill prophecy and cause Him to be put to death. They did not have to stay doubters after His resurrection, though. They could have repented and received Him as their Saviour; many of them did.
Even if one does not know that the Greek word for hallowed means "venerated," one still gets the idea of reverence in regards to God's Name. When we approach the Father, we need to do it with reverence and awe. Wrapped up in His Name is His authority and His power and His character. We need to love what is good, recognize that only God is truly good, and continue to trust that He is thoroughly good, no matter what happens that seems to say otherwise.
There is something else, though, that Yeshua is telling us about hallowing His Name. It is a prayer that His Name will be reverenced everywhere. It is a prayer to cast down evil powers from the heavenlies and make them bow their knees to Yeshua and confess that He is Lord. It is a prayer to turn His Name back from being a casual curse word or spitefully blasphemed, and turned instead to one that is spoken with reverence on the lips of all Mankind.
Surprisingly, there are a lot of Christians who are irreverent towards the Lord in their every day speech. Haven't we all heard our friends from church laughing about something, rolling their eyes, and saying, "Oh, my God!" Some of these are people who are considered to be very spiritual, and some are even on the church staff. I was raised in an era when it was clearly recognized, even by unbelievers, that saying "Oh God" in any way except as prayer, was taking the Lord's Name in vain.
Christians have been desensitized to this sin by watching sitcoms where characters frequently say, "Oh God!" accompanied by a droll facial expression, and then the pre–taped laughter is played to reinforce the idea that this is funny or shows sophistication.
Frequently we hear our friends talk about something funny, and it gets us laughing, then that phrase pops up and we are reluctant to let go of the good time we are having to think soberly about what that person has just revealed about themself.
A person might say this phrase in response to being terrifically impressed to meet someone or to receive a thing that they desired. If they are not saying it as an expression of gratitude to God for the opportunity to meet someone they admire, or for receiving something they like a lot, then it is an expression of idolatry. Others might not know what they mean by it, but the person should stop and think about what is going on in their heart.
Yeshua said in Matthew 12:35 – 37, "A good man out of the good treasure of the heart brings forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. But I say to you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall be condemned." I might be accused of nitpicking or "straining at a gnat" but, apparently, our Lord and Saviour thinks that this is a serious issue.
Not all Mankind will reverence God willingly, but Judgment Day is coming when all people will bow before His Throne and acknowledge that He is holy and that He is Lord. Yeshua wants us to work together in our prayers and deeds so that He can rescue people from being forced to worship Him and then sent to Hell, but rather saved to live with Him in Heaven and be glad to worship Him both now and forever.
This part about hallowing God's Name is like Yeshua opens His arms wide and invites others to come and be part of His Family. It also reinforces His intention in having us address God as "our" Father, rather than merely as "my" Father. It is a prayer to unite the Body of the Anointed with each other as Family, but also to unite them together in common purpose.
The Bible says in Matthew 18:19 that if two us agree on Earth as touching anything that we shall ask, it shall be done for us of His Father which is in Heaven. Just try to imagine the power of all the saints throughout all ages who have prayed this prayer, really meaning it. That prayer is hanging in the air, humming with power, waiting for more redeemed souls to add their prayers, and it is going to cast the powers of darkness out of the heavenlies when enough others have joined in to bring them down.
Additionally, this part of the prayer implies a petition for all our brothers and sisters to develop character so that we will be a credit to our Saviour. God's Name is blasphemed when Christians only talk the talk, and don't walk the walk. By saying the Lord's prayer every day, it is one way of fulfilling Paul's exhortation to pray for all men everywhere.
Your word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
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