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…
Trifling with a name is disrespect to the person to whom it belongs. In the filial relation irreverence of speech and the corresponding deficiency in conduct uniformly coincide, the two being reciprocally cause and effect. The former, however, would of itself produce the latter. Were a son who really honoured his father and mother tempted by bad example to talk flippantly about them, and to call them by names unworthy so sacred a relation, irreverence in feeling and conduct would be the swift and inevitable consequence. The Hebrews dared not pronounce, even on solemn occasions or in reading the Scriptures, Jehovah, the most sacred name of God — a reticence which must have made blasphemy the rarest of sins. Would that we might take a lesson from them as to the needless use of the Divine name, even at sacred times and on sacred themes, much more as to its utterance on ordinary occasions! The frivolous or profane use of that name cannot long co-exist with a reverent spirit. Early and of necessity it lapses into practical atheism. It is a social offence against which no stress of indignation can be excessive. As lese-majeste against the Sovereign of the universe, it is the climax of human audacity. As a sin against one's soul, I will not say that it is irreparable; for I do not believe that recuperative power is denied to any being under the reign of infinite love; but of all forms of guilt and wrong it has this bad pre-eminence, that it fouls the only fountain for its own cleansing, desecrates the very shrine before which lowly, awe-stricken worship is its only token of repentance and condition of forgiveness.
(Prof. Peabody, D. D. , LL. 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.