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Bible Dictionaries

Charles Buck Theological Dictionary

Lord's Prayer

Is that which our Lord gave to his disciples on the Mount. According to what is said in the sixth chapter of Matthew, it was given as a directory; but from Luke 11:1 . some argue that it was given as a form. Some have urged that the second and fourth petition of that prayer could be intended only for a temporary use; but it is answered, that such a sense may be put upon those petitions as shall suit all Christians in all ages; for it is always our duty to pray that Christ's kingdom may be advanced in the world, and to profess our daily dependence on God's providential care. Nevertheless, there is no reason to believe that Christ meant that his people should always use this as a set form; for, if that had been the case, it would not have been varied as it is by the two evangelists, Matthew 6:1-34 : Luke 11:1-54 : It is true, indeed, that they both agree in the main, as to the sense, yet not in the express words; and the doxology which Matthew gives at large is wholly left out in Luke. And, besides, we do not find that the disciples ever used it as a form. It is, however, a most excellent summary of prayer, for its brevity, order, and matter; and it is very lawful and laudable to make use of any single petition, or the whole of it, provided a formal and superstitious use of it be avoided.

That great zeal, as one observes, which is to be found in some Christians either for or against it, is to be lamented as a weakness; and it will become us to do all that we can to promote on each side more moderate sentiments concerning the use of it.

See Doddridge's Lectures, lec. 194; Barrow's Works, vol. 1: p. 48; Archbishop Leighton's Explanation of it; West on the Lord's Prayer; Gill's Body of Divinity, vol. 3: p. 362, 8vo. Fordyce on Edification of Public Instruction, p. 11, 12; Mendlam's Exposition of the Lord's Prayer.

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Buck, Charles. Entry for 'Lord's Prayer'. Charles Buck Theological Dictionary. 1802.

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