Question

Answer

No. This prayer is part of the Sermon on the Mount, which was given to the disciples (Matthew 5:1-2), and not to born again Christians today. Most pastors and churches pray this prayer every Sunday. It is our opinion that this prayer along, with the misuse of 1 John 1:9, has keep Christians from ever knowing that they are 100% completely forgiven by God. Not only do Christians pray this prayer every Sunday, but they also pray this prayer when they sin, believing that God will forgive them, only if they ask him for his forgiveness. 

 

The Lord's prayer is found in Matthew 6:9-15. Most Christians only pray the verses from Matthew 6:9-13 and stop there. But to fully understand who this prayer is for, a Christian needs to read Matthew 6:14-15 too.

How does Matthew 6:14-15 line up with all the verses in the New Covenant that mention that Jesus has taken away all our sins? It doesn't line up because we are talking about two different covenants. For instance read 2 Corinthians 5:18-19...All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. Matthew 6:14-15 is true under the Old Covenant. 2 Corinthians 5:18-19 is true under the New Covenant. Today, we live in the New Covenant.

The key to understanding who this prayer was and is for is to ask the question "When did the New Covenant or New Testament begin?" Most Christians would say that the New Covenant began with Matthew 1, since our Bibles have a page just before Matthew 1, which says "The New Covenant". Why shouldn't we believe that?

When Did the New Covenant Begin?

The New Covenant began at the cross, when Jesus died. That is why it says in Hebrews 9:16-17..."In the case of a will, it is necessary to prove the death of the one who made it, because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living. (Hebrews 9:16-17). 

Jesus was still alive when he gave the Sermon on the Mount. The law was still in effect. Jesus tells the disciples that this is how you should pray, under the Old Covenant. The law however, ended at the cross, when Jesus died (Romans 10:4).

Forgiveness Under the Law and the Old Covenant (Was ongoing and conditional and based on what you do)

"For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins." Matthew 6:14-15

Forgiveness Under the New Covenant (Is final and complete and is based on what Jesus did)

"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." Ephesians 4:21

There is No More Sacrifice For Sin

Then he adds: “Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.” And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary. Hebrews 10:17-18

Jesus Took Away Our Sins

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world". John 1:29

Jesus Forgave All Our Sins

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit. 1 Peter 3:18

When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. Colossians 2:13-14

What Then Should We Do After Our Sin? 

1.  Agree with God that His ways are the best ways. We don't do this in order to be forgiven, because we are forgiven.

2. Confess your sins to one another (James 5:16).

3. Pray to God and ask him to renew your mind with the Word of God and to help you in your time of need. Then test the Word of God (Romans 12:1-2).

4. Thank God that he has forgiven you through the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ.

One suggestion is to read Classic Christianity by Bob George. This is hands down, the single best book about the God, Jesus Christ and the Bible. Your life will never be the same after you read this book. Think about getting the study guide too.