Reredos: The Lord's Prayer

  • Our Father in heaven,
    hallowed be your name.
    Your kingdom come.
    Your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
    Give us this day our daily bread.
    And forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
    And do not bring us to the time of trial,
    but rescue us from the evil one. (Matthew 6:9–13, NRSV)

The prayer that Jesus taught his disciples, and that we now call the Lord’s Prayer, has been a permanent element of Christian public and private prayer for two thousand years. A different version is found in Luke’s Gospel:

  • When you pray, say:
    Father, hallowed be your name.
    Your kingdom come. 
    Give us each day our daily bread. 
  • And forgive us our sins,
    for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us.
  • And do not bring us to the time of trial.’ (Luke 11:2–4, NRSV)

The version printed on the reredos is the version that would have been familiar to seventeenth century worshippers. The traditional ending, which is not found in the gospels, is found attached to some instances of the Lord’s Prayer in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, but not to others. 

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