The Meaning of the Gospel: Ask and You Shall Receive

praying hands

What does it mean to ask and receive?

This is a question that many ask, but few really understand. It’s important we ask ourselves this question because Jesus specifically stated in John 16:24, “Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”

Christ Jesus was not saying we should ask for anything we want, even if it is sinful or unrighteous. Rather he was stating that if our prayer requests are coming from a relationship with God then the Father always hears us.

Not only does He hear our request, but He desires to give us good gifts (Matthew chapter 7).

We should ask Him for wisdom, discernment, and guidance in all things. We should also ask Him to help us become more like Jesus Christ every day.

The Ask

Beseeching God with a request manifests in the form of prayer.

Prayer is simply a heartfelt conversation with our Heavenly Father. We ask Him for guidance, wisdom, and direction in all things. For example, James chapter 1 instructs us to “ask God for wisdom.”

In order to receive from God, we must be willing to give Him our obedience and dependence as well.

When we make a decision based on His will rather than our own, then we are walking in obedience (Ephesians chapter 6).

True prayer requires that we humble ourselves before the Lord, admitting that apart from Him we can do nothing (John chapter 15).

When we pray according to the will of God, we can have confidence that our prayers will be answered. This doesn’t mean we’ll always get what we ask for, but it does mean that our joy will be complete as long as our hearts are right before God. Let’s continue to prayerfully ask Him for what we need and desire – He delights in giving good gifts to His children!

The Receive

Ask and you shall receive – this is a promise from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

It’s important we understand what it means to ask and receive so that we can grow in our relationship with Him. When we ask for things that are in keeping with His will, we can ask confidently knowing He hears us. This is a beautiful promise from our Father – the greatest gift of all!

The key ingredient to receiving what you’ve asked for is faith. Hebrews eleven tells us that Abraham was called because he believed God would fulfill his promise. Without faith, it’s impossible to please Him (Hebrews chapter eleven).

Receiving from God is a process that starts with faith and obedience. We must be willing to do His will, rather than our own, if we want to see answered prayer in our lives.

When we allow Him to direct our paths according to His perfect plan, then we can walk in confidence knowing He will fulfill His promises.

Let’s ask for what we need and receive it with thanksgiving – all glory goes to Him! Amen!

This is to be interpreted as requesting of God in prayer for such things as are deficient; whether they are of a temporary nature, such as food and clothing, which Christ, in the previous chapter, had warned against an excessive and anxious concern for; or of a spiritual nature, such as grace, mercy, and wisdom to act properly towards God and others.

But, if we do not ask according to the will of God in Christ’s name, under the direction and influence of the Spirit who asks in faith and fear, and with submission to God’s will, we shall not obtain what we ask for; rather than as a reward.

What did Jesus mean by this?

Does this mean to ask for anything we want, even if you’re not a Christian, or asking for righteous things? Our prayers to God are not unlike our requests of men.

Our prayers are based on a relationship, as Jesus points out in Matthew chapter seven. If a child asks his father for something the father knows to be hurtful, the request is denied.

The child may be frustrated and unhappy when he doesn’t get what he asked for, but he should trust his father.

Conversely, when the child asks for a good thing according to His will, then they can ask confidently knowing their Father hears them and desires to give them good gifts. He delights in giving good gifts!

This understanding helps us know how prayer works with God. We ask Him for good gifts, and through His Son Jesus Christ, we can come to know the Father.

Biblical Commentary on “Ask and You Shall Receive”

Matthew chapter 7 records a conversation between Jesus and His disciples. They ask Him how to pray, so He gives them what is now called the Lord’s Prayer.

It starts with “Our Father in heaven” – this implies that prayer begins with God! We are instructed to ask for things according to His will (verses 11-12). By doing this we can ask confidently knowing our Father hears us and desires to give good gifts (verse 11) – it also helps us grow closer to Him as well!

Let’s continue asking according to His will so that we may know Him better each day!

A Prayer About “Ask and You Shall Receive”

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your wonderful promises to us in the Bible. We ask that you help us become more like Jesus Christ each day by asking according to Your will, so that we may come closer to knowing You better and becoming one with You through your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ!

We ask God for wisdom, discernment, and guidance in all things according to Your Holy Spirit. And your word instructs us that when we ask with a sincere heart, You will give us what we ask for. So today, we ask confidently in Jesus Christ’s name, that you bless our loved ones, heal our bodies, touch the minds of politicians, and heal our land.

We ask these things in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

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