John 16:12-13

I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.

The Lord's Prayer,
Updated by the Holy Spirit

There was something Jesus could never teach to his disciples when he was walking with them in the fields of Galilee. The true meaning of his coming sacrifice on the cross was to be hidden from everyone until the mission was completed.

That is the reason why the famous prayer which Jesus taught to his disciples does not contain the whole gospel message. The familiar petition "Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us" lacks the reality of atonement which was yet to come.

It wasn't until after Jesus had returned to his Father that the Holy Spirit was able to start teaching about this fundamental part of the Good News. The prayer for forgiveness had been answered. It was Apostle Paul who was most likely the first one to really understand what had taken place on Calvary. See how the wording on forgiveness changed after the atonement of sins, under the instruction of the Spirit:

"Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you." (Colossians 3:13 NIV)

"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." (Ephesians 4:32 NIV)

According to the gospel of the New Covenant, all the sins of men were permanently forgiven through the cross. And because of that, salvation was to be given to those who receive Jesus, regardless of their good or bad deeds.

Therefore, the next time you recite The Lord's Prayer again, remember it's the old version. It has been updated by Jesus Himself. 🙂


- Markku Sarento