The Savior’s Sermon (Part 3)
”Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”Matthew 7:7–11
Share this Post
Have you ever prayed for something and gotten a different outcome than you asked for? Chances are, you have. It seems that prayer does not have a 100 percent satisfaction rate; and yet in Matthew chapter seven, Jesus seems to be saying something completely contrary to this. He says, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7). How do we understand this in terms of our personal prayer lives, which don’t always seem to match up to these words of Jesus?
First, we look back to the Word. Jesus says that “everyone who asks receives,” but many prayers that are sent don’t exactly result in the outcome we’ve asked for. If we are not receiving what we ask for in prayer, than what are we receiving? Matthew 7:11 says that if even we, as fallen and sinful human beings, know how to give good things to our children, “how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”
Jesus compares us to children asking their father for things. For example, a young girl might ask her father for toys, for candy, and for permission to stay at a friend’s house to play. Sometimes, the father will happily say yes to his daughter’s requests. Yet, at other times, for various reasons, the answer is no. Of course, this is not because the father does not love his child, but because he is either unable to say yes or aware that his daughter’s want is not what’s best for her. If the daughter were to ask her father for candy every hour of the day, her father would eventually start saying no, because he cares about her health.
God always answers our prayers, but He does not always answer in a way that we would like. Unlike our earthly fathers, He is never unable to fulfill our requests. However, much like the girl’s father, God wants what is best for us. In fact, Romans 8:28 says that “for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose.” Because He is holy and we are fallen and sinful, we do not always know what is truly good, and we do not trust Him as we should. This keeps us from seeing that He is always good and always faithful in prayer. One thing that we can always be sure of in prayer is that God will always give us grace, mercy, and forgiveness of our sins. Because of what Jesus has done, “everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened” (Matthew 7:8).
Click Here for Previous Devotions
Share this Post