Ask and Ye shall Receive
Matthew 7:7-11 “Ask and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
For everyone that asketh recieveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
For what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask Him?”
First, let me ask you: do you want what God has for you?
Then ask for it—you will receive an answer.
But sometimes it is an answer that has a fulfillment, later.
So what do you do? You seek for the means of getting the fulfillment. And use it—that is seeking.
(Perhaps it is a promise that needs to be accomplished: for overcoming sin, for spiritual growth, for healing, for meeting your needs [yes, God is interested in every part of you; your wellbeing, safety, and finances])
What can the means be? Prayer is a great means. It is not reminding the Lord of what He said, but showing the Lord that you expect Him to do it.
This is the knocking: you keep after this promise.
Ezekiel 36:36-37 “Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the Lord build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the Lord have spoken it, and I will do it.
(Here is the promise, but what did Israel do with it? It saddened the Lord that they did not seek for it enough to inquire after it.)
Thus saith the Lord God; I will yet for this be inquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them;…”
Belief is a great means:
It strengthens you against the whispers of the Adversary, the devil, that God is not going to do this for you. (“Sure,” he whispers, “God might do it for others, but not for you.”)
Belief, on the other hand says: I am staying with the Lord. I know He knows my circumstance….I also know He will help me in it, bring me through it, and be with me in it. We “knock” by believing. Even to the point of telling the Lord: “I believe, help my unbelief.” He will.
(Mark 9:23-24 “Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help Thou mine unbelief.”)
Obedience is another means: Sometimes we just have to get up and do what is next, and next; leaving the final outcome to God. The “knocking” is the obedience.
Mark 11:12-15 “And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, He was hungry:
And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, He came, if haply He might find anything thereon: and when He came to it, He found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet.
(If a fig tree had leaves, it ought to have fruit; since the fruit comes on the tree before the leaves. But it did not.)
And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter forever. And His disciples heard it.
And they came to Jerusalem…..”
They did not hang around and see if it was going to happen; they went into Jerusalem where the Lord cleansed the Temple the last time. They had a day of work to do. And did it.
Mark 11:19-22 “When even was come, He went out of the city.
And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots.
And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto Him, Master, behold, the fig tree which Thou cursedst is withered away.
And Jesus answering said unto them, Have faith in God.”
We ask, because we need. He answers many different ways: with further instructions, with promises, with power at the moment.
(How wonderful are His ways! How many lessons I have learned by them.)
We seek, because the need is still there, and we need to know the means God is going to use.
And we knock, because we know God has heard, and encouraged us to keep going to get the blessing. And when He opens, He will give it.
He does not give “look alike” blessings, which are the stone for bread, the snake for the fish (eel).
But He knows how to give “good gifts” to those of His children which ask Him.