Thy kingdom come
The form of expression used by the ancient Jews, relating to this article, before the coming of Christ, doubtless was, as it now stands in their prayers F18, (aby Kxyvm) (twklm) , "the kingdom of thy Messiah come". Christ alters the expression, leaves out the word "Messiah", and puts it thus, "thy kingdom come", to let them know that the Messiah was come; and that it was the kingdom of the Father, in the power of his grace, upon the souls of men, they must pray for and expect: however, he conformed to a rule of their's in this, as well as in the former petition F19; that
``every blessing, or prayer, in which there is no (Mvh trbz) , "mention made of the name", i.e. of God, is no prayer; and that every prayer, in which there is not (twklm) , "the kingdom", is no prayer.''In this petition the disciples were taught to pray for the success of the Gospel, both among Jews and Gentiles; for the conversion of God's elect, in which the kingdom of God would greatly appear, to the destruction of the kingdom of Satan, and the abolition of the kingdom of the beast, in the latter day; which will usher in the kingdom, of the mediator, he will receive from his Father, and this will terminate in the kingdom of glory: in a word, not the kingdom of nature and providence is meant, which always was; but the kingdom of heaven, which was at hand, nay had taken place, though as yet was not very visible, and which is spiritual in the hearts of God's people, Jews and Gentiles; and which will appear exceeding glorious in the latter day, and at last be swallowed up in the ultimate glory; all which must be very desirable by the sincere lovers of Jesus Christ.
Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
There is some appearance of this petition still remaining, in what the F20 Jews call the short prayer:
``what is the short prayer? R. Eliezer says, (Mymvb Knwur hve) , "do thy will in heaven"; and give quietness of spirit, or acquiescence of spirit in thy will, to them that fear thee below.''Christ says "thy will"; not the will of wicked men, nor the will of Satan, nor a man's own will, but the will of God: by which is meant either his secret will, which is the rule of all his proceedings both in providence and grace; is unknown to us, till facts make it appear; is always fulfilled in heaven and in earth; and sometimes is fulfilled by those who have no regard to his revealed will; and is what ought to be submitted to patiently, and without murmuring: or rather his revealed will, which consists partly in the declarations of his grace and mercy; as that salvation is by Christ, whoever believes in him shall be saved, that all the redeemed be sanctified, persevere to the end, and be glorified; and partly in the commands enjoined his people, which will of his is good, perfect, and acceptable. The will of God may be said to be done by us, when our wills are resigned to his; when we patiently submit to every adverse dispensation of providence; when our hearts and actions are, in some measure, conformed to his law; when what is done, is done in faith, with a view to his glory, and without dependence upon it; of which such only are capable who have a spiritual understanding of the will of God, believe in Christ, receive grace and strength from him, and are assisted by his Spirit. These desire to do the will of God, as it is done in heaven; meaning not so much by the inanimate creatures, the sun, and moon, and stars, as glorified saints and holy angels, who do it voluntarily and cheerfully; speedily, and without delay; constantly, and without any interruption; and perfectly and completely.
F18 Seder Tephillot, fol. 128. 2. Ed. Basil.
F19 T. Bab. Beracot, fol. 40. 2.
F20 Ib. fol. 29. 2.