January 18th 2017 [Day 18]
THE THING ABOUT THINGS!
‘Whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them’. NKJV
Context: This is always a tough one for me. I see so many excesses in the teaching of this verse.
- The “God wants to make you rich” TV evangelist brigade teachings Says: “Send us $20 and we’ll pray God blesses you and makes you rich!” Whilst all the time they’re getting rich themselves. We are already rich in Christ as coheirs. God won’t give us great riches if we couldn’t handle it. So God will always meet our needs but He may not give us everything we want.
- The opposite to this is the misery mentality brigade teaching where we’re supposed to be miserable worms, lowly and poor in substance and in spirit and survive on frugality! Hold up, then why does God throughout the Bible continually call us to multiply and increase? How can I be generous to the needy if I’m poor? Ah, I hear some say, Jesus was poor! No He wasn’t. He chose to be poor for our sake’s relinquishing His heavenly rights, but there were women who ministered to the needs of Jesus and the disciples and some of them were very wealthy! And when the soldiers took Jesus’s clothes they threw lots for His robe because it was seamless. Poor people did not wear seamless robes in those days, the nobility did.
- And finally the balanced brigade teaching Says: It is clear that the Lord wants us to be content with what we have. Let your character [your moral essence, your inner nature] be free from the love of money [shun greed—be financially ethical], being content with what you have; for He has said, “I will never [under any circumstances] desert you [nor give you up nor leave you without support, nor will I in any degree leave you helpless], nor will I forsake or let you down or relax My hold on you [assuredly not]!” [Hebrews 13:5] But He also wants to bless us generously so we can generously bless others! 2 Corinthians 9:6-10
Application: You parents—if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him. [Mt 7:9-11] This verse clearly teaches us that:
- God is our loving Father.
- He knows our needs.
- He is willing and able to meet all our needs.
- He will give us only what we need and what is GOOD FOR US.
- However, He’ll still give us over and above when He knows we’ll be generous to others.
- Hence before this teaching in verses 7-11 we see in the Lord’s prayer “your will be done on earth as in heaven!”.
- He gives good gifts [not greedy desires] to those who ask [Be specific!]
- So we need to ask, but in agreement with His will.
- What is His will then? [Check that out tomorrow!]
Tomorrow, I’ll look at this more closely to see why we have to ask if God already knows what we need! And why it is best to ask according to His will!
Prayer: Gracious and loving Father God. I thank you that you always meet my needs but not always what I want. Sometimes I think I’m asking for a fish but you know it’ll turn out to be a snake that will bite me. For example with regards to work and especially the “what I” wanted in ministry deception, that would have been like trying to eat a stone instead of bread. You know what is best for me and your Denials are sometimes just Delays, Diversions or even Don’t even think about it son, it is not good for you! Thank you Abba Father that you care enough for me to say “no” “not yet” or even “yes” When it is good for me! Amen