Holy Wednesday—The Conclusion to the Lord’s Prayer (Mt 27:57–66)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

What is the conclusion to the Lord’s Prayer? For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

What does this mean? This means that I should be certain that these petitions are pleasing to our Father in heaven, and are heard by Him; for He Himself has commanded us to pray in this way and has promised to hear us. Amen, amen means “yes, yes, it shall be so.” (LSB 325)

INI + AMEN.

((3. The conclusion of the story is Jesus’ burial.))

Last week we heard about Jesus dying.“After crying out again with a loud voice, He gave up His Spirit.” All His work of salvation was accomplished. That’s what He said, “It is finished.” There was nothing else needed for your salvation. But that’s not all of the story, though. That’s not the end, not the “conclusion.”

We get that tonight. “When evening came, a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, came. He also was a disciple of Jesus. After going to Pilate, he asked for the body of Jesus.” We all remember what he did with it. “He wrapped it in a clean linen cloth and placed it in his own new tomb.”

Death isn’t the conclusion. Once someone dies, they’re buried. That’s what’s next. That’s the end. “He rolled a large stone against the door of the tomb.” End. Done. Over. Still more, though. “Seal it up!” say the Chief Priests and Pharisees. “You’ve got your guard,” says Pilate.

So Christ’s suffering and death ends not with His cross, but with Him being buried, with Him resting from all the work He’d done to save you. He rested on the Seventh Day—Saturday, the Preparation Day. The conclusion isn’t His cross, but the Conclusion is His body buried in a stone-cold tomb.

((2. All God’s promises conclude in Jesus.))

Paul says, “All God’s promises are ‘Yes’ in Him.” All of God’s promises end, are closed, concluded in Jesus. He promised a Savior. He came. God promised that He’d die. He did. He promised that “they they would make his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death.” It happened. We heard about that tonight: Joseph, a rich man, gave Jesus his own tomb.

God really does keep all His promises in Jesus. His promises of salvation. His promise to never leave you or forsake you. Whatever your Father promises “is most certainly true” in Jesus, is “Yes” in Jesus, is “Amen” in Jesus. And His promises also include the Lord’s Prayer.

Our Father in heaven “has commanded us to pray in this way and has promised to hear us.” His promise is kept in Jesus. Jesus gave us the Words of the Lord’s Prayer so that we would trust that the Father hears and answers our prayer. Not because of you, but because His Son Jesus was “crucified, died, and was buried” for you. He promises to hear the Lord’s Prayer, but your Father promises to hear every single one of your prayers, too.

Elsewhere Jesus teaches to be steadfast in prayer. Don’t doubt. Your Father listens. He can’t not. Jesus makes sure of that. You’re baptized into Him, and so your Father hears you no matter what. He promises, “Call upon Me in the day of trouble, I will deliver you, and you will glorify Me.”

((1. We conclude with “Amen” trusting in Jesus’ conclusion for us.))

But that’s not all. Yes, Jesus is the “yes” to all God’s promises, but Paul also says, “therefore, also through Him the ‘Amen’ is gloriously spoken through us to God.” Through Jesus you say, “Amen,” you say, “Yes, Yes, it shall be so.” We can gloriously say Amen. We conclude the Lord’s Prayer, every Prayer, every blessing, even the Sermon’s “In the Name of Jesus” with “amen” “gloriously,” that is, confidently, trustingly, as dear children. We can even praise our Father by saying “for Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever.” Why? Because it’s all through Jesus.

Through Jesus’ death, your “amen” means something. Through His conclusion in the tomb, you can conclude all your prayers gloriously. But there’s even more gloriousness to “Amen.” Because Jesus is also risen from the dead. As Paul says, “God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name so that every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” It’s why we can say that the “kingdom, power, and glory” are our Father’s “forever and ever.” He rose Jesus from the dead for you.

No matter what happens in your life your “Amen” is certain. Jesus is your “amen.” Your Father will always hear and answer your prayer. Trust Jesus’ death, His burial, His resurrection, His death, burial, and resurrection were for you, after all. “Amen” to that. “Amen” to your prayers, too!

((Conclusion.))

What is the conclusion to the Lord’s Prayer? For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

What does “Amen” mean? This means that I should be certain that these petitions are pleasing to our Father in heaven, and are heard by Him; for He Himself has commanded us to pray in this way and has promised to hear us. Amen, amen means “yes, yes, it shall be so.” (LSB 325)

We doubt our prayers sometimes. But God promises to hear you. That promise is “Yes” in Jesus. “He who did not spare His own Son, how will He not through Him graciously give us all things?” Jesus died. Jesus was buried. Jesus was raised. That’s the conclusion to the story, the conclusion of the Passion. Those are all “yes” answers to God’s promises.

We know the conclusion to our prayers, too. “Amen.” Your Father does hear you. He will answer. That’s His promise, too. You can certainly ask Him “with boldness and confidence.” You’re His baptized child no matter what! There you not only died with Jesus, you were buried with Him, too, raised with Him, too! The Spirit given in Baptism will drive you to gloriously say your amen with eyes focused on Jesus’ cross.

But cross and death aren’t the conclusion. Grave and resurrection are. His and yours. God hearing your prayers is, too. That’s God’s “yes” in Jesus. Not only “yes but “amen.” “Amen, amen.” “Yes, yes, it shall be so.”

INI + AMEN.

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