The LORD's Plans Will Prevail - May 2021

by Pastor Pete Panitzke on June 01, 2021

If you are walking with me on this daily Bible reading pattern (attached), you will say, “Didn’t we just read this?” 1 Chronicles 11 lists King David’s mighty men. We did just see this list in 2 Samuel 23 a couple days ago.
 
The Chronicler (possibly Ezra), living after the Exile about 450 BC, records many of the same events as the books of Samuel and Kings. He focuses only on the southern nation of God’s people, Judah, whose capital was Jerusalem and whose kings were all descended from David. His goal is to show that all happened, even the exile in Babylon, happened as the LORD had foretold. The LORD is faithful, even when God’s people are unfaithful.
 
The phrases that jump out at me in this chapter:

  • As the LORD had promised
  • Because the LORD Almighty was with him
  • The LORD brought a great victory

The LORD was accomplishing his plan.
 
Our New Testament reading (Luke 11:1-26) also shows that nothing can stop the LORD from accomplishing his plan. The devil was active, possessing many people at that time. But Jesus is stronger. “If I drive out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come to you.”
 
What are the issues that you are facing that lead you to question God’s faithfulness? What makes you wonder… Does God have plans to bless me? Will his plans succeed? 

Take heart! Our Savior is almighty. Our Savior is faithful. The LORD's plans will prevail. 
 
The challenges of life make me appreciate the Lord’s Prayer. Every time I counsel with someone who wonders, “Is God’s plan for me going to succeed,” and we close with the Lord’s Prayer, I see how each petition speaks to the issues we discussed.
 
With that in mid, let us claim the privilege of prayer to our King (Luke 11:1-13). He will answer our prayers as he, our loving Father, knows best.
 
Three issues with the Lord's Prayer

1. Why does this version of the Lord’s Prayer in Luke differ from Matthew’s version?

This is another indication that they are independent witnesses. If Luke were simply copying Matthew, he would have had the exact same wording. But Matthew, as one of the disciples present at the Sermon on the Mount, records Jesus’ words that day. Luke, as an historian, learns from those who were there that Jesus spoke a similar prayer on a different occasion. This reassures me as I read their accounts of the Empty Tomb on Easter. They are independent witnesses to the critical question: Did Jesus rise from the dead?
 
2. Why are there footnotes about “some manuscripts”?

We don’t have any of the documents that the Biblical authors wrote on. Instead, we have thousands of handwritten copies (manuscripts). Imagine you were a copyist and you came to the Lord’s Prayer in Luke. How easy it would be to think, “I know this, I don’t have to copy it. I’ll just write these words from memory.” Mistakes were made. Thankfully, there are scholars who study these thousands of manuscripts. In the places where there is a difference in the manuscripts, they report to us what is found in the earliest manuscripts and what is found in the vast majority of the manuscripts. Because of the wealth of manuscript evidence for the text, less than 1% of the text is in doubt, and no doctrine of Scripture is in doubt. 

  1. Where is the doxology?

The manuscript evidence is clear that the doxology “For thine is the kingdom…” was not part of Jesus’ original prayer. It was likely added as part of the Church’s liturgy as a short song of praise, similar to the way we add “Glory be to the Father…” after singing a psalm.

May the Holy Spirit bless your reading of his Word. The Father will hear your prayers!

Pastor Pete 

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