And he said to them, When you pray, say, Our Father which are in heaven, Hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done…
I can conceive of two ways or methods of reaching the notion of a fatherhood in the Deity, or of arriving at the use of this form of address to the Supreme Being, and calling Him Father. The first may be characterized as an ascending, the second as a descending, process; the first having its rise in an earthly and human relation, the second in a relation that is heavenly, and Divine.
I. The earthly and human relation of a child to a parent-a son to a father — is very close and tender.
II. Here we touch the other and higher view which, as I think, Scripture suggests and warrants of the relation now in question; the relation in respect of which we call God Father, and invoke Him as Our Father. It is essential to the very being of the Supreme that He should be a Father, and that of Him there should be a Son. From all eternity, accordingly — in the terms of the Creed of the Council of Nice — the Son is of the Father, "be. gotten of His Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God." He is "the everlasting Son of the Father," "begotten, not made." The relation therefore of paternity or fatherhood in God precedes creation, as well as redemption; and is indeed from everlasting. For before all worlds the Son is in the bosom of the Father. And the infinite, ineffable complacency subsisting between the Father and the Son, realized in the unity of the Holy Spirit with them both, is the true prototype and original model or pattern of the fatherly relation and the fatherly affection of which all who are in the Son are partakers, and in virtue of which they call God Father, and invoke Him as their Father.
(R. S. Candlish, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.