PRAYERS THAT GOD ANSWER Part 1
ASK: Ask, Seek, Knock
Dr Wole Gbogboade
Text: Matt. 7:7-12; Luke 11:9-13.
It is true that the Lord said in the scriptures that when we “Ask”, it shall be given to us, “Seek”, you shall find, “Knock”, door will be opened. However, we all know that it’s not just knocking any door that opens it, the door must have key. Likewise, you don’t open door for everyone who knocks without acknowledging the voice of the one knocking. Mere knocking, seeking or asking does not open the door. Therefore, the first qualification is that the Lord is talking to His Disciples who believe in Him and are willingly following His ways. John 15:7-8. How can you pray to someone you don’t believe in? How can you expect somebody who does not know you to open his door to you just because you are knocking? As it is in the natural, so it is in the spiritual; all truths are parallel. The illustrations Jesus made about answered prayer shows knowledge of the persons knocking. Luke 11:5-8. The first is a friend in the night. The other is about a woman who besieged the judge. Luke 18:2-8. Of course, the friend recognizes his friend’s voice and because he is his friend, he must rise up to give him all what he his friend need; the judge recognize the fact that the woman had a case before him. Knowledge of the One you are praying to will help you immensely.
The Bible says, “The sacrifice of a sinner is an abomination to God.” Prov. 21:27.
Therefore, it is those who know their God that will be strong and do exploits. Daniel 11:32. In other words, knowledge of God is what empowers us to do exploit.
God is committed to the prayers/needs of His people. David was so sure of this fact when he said, “The lord is my Shepherd, I shall not be in want.” Psalm 23:1. The next verse says, “He makes me to lie down in green pastures, (His Word) He leads me beside quiet waters, (Holy Spirit) He restores my soul. He guides me in the path of righteousness for His name’s sake.” v. 2-3. Believers must know that God really wants to give us all we need, not our “want”. However, you can pray but, you can not answer your prayer. Therefore, since God is the one to answer your prayer, you need to know the type of prayer He answers before you pray.
Jesus said, “Father, I thank you because you hear me always.” John 11:41. That should be the testimony of Believers who know their God and follow His principles. The Bible says, the prayer of a sinner is abomination to God. Prov.28:9. Who is a sinner? The one that turns a deaf hear to the word of God. So, it is prayer that is offered by His people that He wants to answer. Of course, sinners can pray for repentance and forsake their sinful ways for God to have mercy and save them. Even many Sinners have repented because of the intercession of their relatives, neighbours or friends who are Saints. Therefore it is good to pray for our loved ones. God appreciates prayers that are prayed in righteousness. Hence, the Psalmist said,“He guides me in the path of righteousness”. That also explains why God Himself said, “If my people who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 2Chro.7:14. The Bible says, “The effectual fervent prayer of the righteous man availeth much.” James 5:16.
For us to be able to access God’s presence and receive answered prayer always, we must be willing to:
1- knows His will (seek His face)
2- turn away from our wicked ways (ask in righteousness). The bible says, “But the prayer of the righteous pleases Him.” Prov. 15:8.
3- Forgive others as you want your heavenly Father to forgive you. Matt. 6:12; Matt. 5:23-26; Matt. 18:35 (Note: read Matt.18:21-35); Mark 11:25.
4- It is not just to pray, you must also trust (believe or have faith) in Him. Psalm 84:12; Mark 11:22, 24.
5- God is willing to do more for His people beyond our prayers because we love Him and are seeking His face not just His hand- His will. Psalm 84:11; 1 Cor. 2:9; Eph. 3:20-21.
Finally, what you are Asking, Seeking Him for and Knocking for also matter. In the illustration in both texts, the Lord said, since your earthly father will not give you stone for bread or serpent for fish, how much more will your heavenly Father, give “good gifts” to those who ask? Matt 7:12. So, we must ask for good things- things that are right according to God’s word. v. 13 qualify it more when it says, “do to others what you will have them do to you.” What you are praying for others about, are you willing to pray it happens to you? If you are willing to curse your enemy, are you willing to receive a curse, for instance? God answered the prayer of Solomon “because he didn’t ask for the life of your enemy” nor mundane things like riches to consume on his own lust or long life good as they are but, he asked for understanding heart (to know God’s ways) in judging God’s people that are great. 1 King 3:11-14. God decided to give Him all he asked. In addition, God gave him wealth above all kings/people who reigned/lived before him. God is just and He loves justice. Therefore, love is the basis of our relationship with God and us. Luke 11:13 concludes that the “good gift” is the Holy Spirit.
Of course the Holy Spirit helps us to pray aright. Rom. 8:26. He also intercedes on our behalf according to God’s will, so that all things will work for us according to God’s purpose for our lives. V. 27-28.
May we always find favour in God’s sight, may His will manifest in our lives and may the Lord hear us always to bless us as he leads/uses us always in all ways in Jesus name.
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