May 17: School & Family Catechist

The School & Family Catechist
by Rev. William Smith (1834)

being an Exposition on The Westminster Shorter Catechism, Question 100.

Q. 100. What doth the preface of the Lord’s prayer teach us?

A. The preface of the Lord’s prayer, which is “Our Father who art in heaven,” teacheth us to draw near to God with all holy reverence and confidence, as children to a father, able and ready to help us, and that we should pray with and for others.

EXPLICATION.

The preface. –An introduction, or something going before, which is intended to lead to the subject which follows.

Reverence and confidence. –Fear and hope, awful regard, and firm belief.

ANALYSIS.

In the preface of the Lord’s prayer, which is, “Our Father who art in heaven,” we are taught four things :

1. These words teach us, in the first place, to draw near to God with holy reverence. –Heb. xii. 28. Let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and godly fear.

2. To approach him with a holy confidence as children to a father. –Rom. viii. 15. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry Abba, Father.

3. They teach us also to trust in God, as able and ready to help us. –Isa. xli. 13. I  the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not, I will help thee.

4. These words also teach us to pray with and for others. –1 Tim. ii. 1. I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men.

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