Jesus moved from “you have heard/but I say” to a “do not be like the hypocrites”.
Yesterday we saw that we are not to be hypocritical in trumpeting almsgiving.
Do not pray like the hypocrites.
They like...no, they love...to pray while standing in they synagogues and on the street corners.
They love to be seen by people.
They use that which we are to do - pray - as an exercise in narcissistic “religious holiness”.
They use their “religious activity” for the own supposed benefit.
New English Translation (NET)
2 You desire and you do not have; you murder and envy and you cannot obtain; you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask;
3 you ask and do not receive because you ask wrongly, so you can spend it on your passions.
4 Adulterers, do you not know that friendship with the world means hostility toward God? So whoever decides to be the world’s friend makes himself God’s enemy.
How are we to pray?
In own room.
Behind closed door.
Again, we see that Father sees all.
There are no secrets.
Does this mean that public/corporate prayer is wrong?
It is an issue of the heart.
We are to pray together.
We are not to pray to receive adulation, glory, etc.