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January 23, 2022 7:00 am
If a believer fails to receive the good gifts that a gracious God has to offer the full lies not with God, but with our failure to ask and to ask with confidence and welcome to the Bible study on the radio and Internet broadcast with Dr. Jean sports preparing you to think and act biblically. The God we serve is neither a capricious nor vengeful deity like the gods of heathen nations are God invites us to come boldly to the throne of grace and to request the good gifts he offers from his endless bounty.
Listen now as Dr. Boyce draws our attention to a God who seeks to give the very best, to those who know him as father. If the young man once to ask his father for something he'll pattern his request on the nature and the temperament of his father. If the father is ill tempered and stingy young man will ask for little Neil. Take care to present his need and the most winsome man unobjectionable manner. The father is good-natured and is generous. The child will present his need openly and with great confidence. It is the same spiritually. The man prays he will pray in harmony with his view of the God to whom he is praying.
The gods are capricious as the Greeks believed, then men will come carefully and will be on their guard got his vengeful man will be fearful if God is gracious as Jesus Christ declared the true God to be, then one who believes in him can come boldly and he will not fear to ask for good gifts of the one who is declared to be his father. Is this that gives the full measure of importance to the verses, which form the next section of the sermon on the Mount for the verses contain the Lord's declaration that God is indeed gracious to those who are his spiritual children. He declared, ask and it shall be given you seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you. For everyone that asked if receive it than he that Sica following death and to him that Marcus, it shall be opened.
Or what man is there of you with his son ask bread, will give him a stone for the ask a fish, will give him a serpent. If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your father was in heaven. Give good gifts to them that ask him. According to these words, God is not harsh or revengeful or stingy. On the contrary, he is loving, gracious and merciful and he is anxious to get the very best gifts to his children at this passage may be summarized by a few simple propositions. The first is clearly that it applies only to those who are really God's children as means of course that these verses as well, as all others in the Bible that refer to prayer. Do not include everybody. They say ask and it shall be given to you seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you of who are the use in this text. The answer is in the full context for its clear that they are only those who have gone the father of the Lord Jesus Christ for their father.
They are promises only for those in whose hearts God has performed the miracle of the new birth, so that while at one time they were without Christ aliens to Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. They are now saying to be fellow citizens and members of God's spiritual household. Moreover, the promises of this section are additionally restricted to those who are obedient children. This is implied in the context of the sermon on the mount, but it seemed more clearly in other passages. Take John 322 for an example. This verse says then whatever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
Why does John say that his prayers are always being answered is because he is a member of God's family. Of course, but it's also more than that. He says that it is because he keeps God's commandments. And because he seeks to please them person who does that can be certain that his prayers will be hard and that all of them will be answered.
I know that someone will say, but is God, the father of all men doesn't hear all prayers answer to that is no no he is not and he does not hear the prayers of those who are not in his family.
You know what the Lord Jesus Christ taught in the 13th chapter of Luke verses 24 through 30. It's almost the exact counterpart of the text we are considering the point of Luke's passage is that there can be no answer to those who are not in God's family. Jesus had just taught that the only ones who would be saved were those who entered in by the narrow gate.
He was referring to faith in himself. He edited many would seek to enter in by other means, but would not be able then he uttered this great sentence when once the Master of the house is risen up and it shut the door and you begin to stand outside into knock at the door saying, Lord, Lord opened on the house and he shall answer and say unto you, I know, not from whence you are and you shall begin to say we have eaten and drunk in thy presence and I was taught in our streets but he shall say I tell you I know, not from one CR depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity.
In both cases there is an asking in both cases there is a knocking but in Matthew is the born-again child of God, who is knocking, and asking in Luke is the unbeliever.
If we are to exercise the spiritual discrimination and judgment that Christ was talking about in verse six he said give not that which is holy under the dogs. Neither cast your pearls before swine, then we must apply verses seven through 11 to believers in the Lord Jesus Christ only. We must read the verse this way, ask you who are born again and it shall be given you who are born again seek you who are born again and you who are born again shall find, knock you who are born again and it shall be opened unto you, who are born again prayer is for believers in the Lord Jesus Christ only with this point behind us, we may now go on to the second obvious teaching of these verses and it is this even if we are Christians we must ask for the things that God promises the section of God's word contains a positive statement of the principal ask and it shall be given you. James chapter 4 verse two contains the negative statement he'd have not because ye ask not for the teaching of both texts is identical God delights to give good gifts to his children, and hence, we do not have them.
The fault does not lie in God lies in our failure to ask things of him. I believe that these texts contain the explanation of the weakness and irrelevance of much Christian living and of much contemporary Christianity.
Every now and then a minister is asked by some Christian why is it that I cannot seem to find victory in the Christian life.
Why does the Bible seem difficult understand why do I still seem in bondage to some besetting sin. One of my such a poor witness. Why do the high principles of Christian conduct.
Have such little effect on my job, and in the affairs of my family.
The answer is that you do not ask God for these blessings you have not because you ask not what is it many a minister is asking that I do not have the power of God in my preaching.
Why is the Bible so dad what are there so few persons being converted where there are no leaders to expand and reinforce the ministry. Again, the answer is simply that you are not praying you have not because you ask not. Why do so few outstanding candidates for the Christian ministry. Many Christian Lehman are asking why is the church the week the preaching so poor our impact upon our society so ineffective our goals so unrealized. Again, God answers you are neglecting your prayer life. You have not because you are not asking is this true. Don't these words describe the church as we know it today and only described many of us personally.
Dr. Ruben a Torre who makes many of these points quite eloquently in his book the power of prayer rights correctly. We do not live in the praying age we live in an age of hustle and bustle of man's efforts in man's determination of man's confidence in himself and in his own power to achieve things and age of human organization and human machinery in human portion human scheming and human achievement in the things of God means no real achievement of all we need is not so much.
Some new organization some new wheel.
The spirit of the living creature in the wheels.
We already possess. Let me make this point is specifically as I'm able. What do we lack in our own lives and in the church generally is a wisdom. Wisdom to deal with a sophisticated and ungodly world to distinguish good from evil right from wrong and to present the claims of Christ intelligibly and with success if it is, then we should ask wisdom of God. James says of any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men liberally, and abrade is not and it shall be given him. We lack wisdom of all those hours are not God's like suitable candidates for church office for those permissions.
Do we lack Sunday school teachers or church workers, so it is because we are not asking Jesus said, the harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into the harvest. Besides, isn't it significant that these great remarks about prayer occur toward the end of the sermon on the Mount. After the long lists of things that should characterize our lives as Christians, we read of purity of heart, we lack it, we read of meekness and we like that we lack integrity, love, trust in God. Humility discrimination in all of the other things Christ mentions is a true that Jesus mentions prayer again precisely at this point just so we may be encouraged to ask God for them.
Prayer is not changed. God is not changed. His ear is as quick to hear and his arm is strong to save as they ever were.
Then let us ask Tori rights prayer can do anything that God can do as God knew anything prayer is omnipotence.
No one can stand against the man who knows how to pray and who meets all the conditions of prevailing prayer and who really plays the adds that this is true because the Lord God is omnipotent God works for him and works through him. This brings us to our next point for Christ did not only say that we were to ask for God's blessings. He also said that we were to go on asking in the Greek language which lies behind our New Testament. There are two basic kinds of imperatives bruise the aorist imperative, which is a command to do one particular thing at one specific point in time there is a present imperative, which is the command not only to do the thing once, but to go on doing it indefinitely. For example, we were to say to a person driving the car stop at that light stop would be an aorist imperative for it would refer to only one action.
However, if one within to say and don't forget always stop for red lights. Stop would then be present imperative, for it would refer to something to be done repeatedly of the imperatives in this section of Christ's sermon asks he could knock our present imperatives, and hence they are a command to play, read Peter Atlee to persist in prayer. They are a command not to become discouraged. I know that there is something about the idea of prevailing prayer that on the surface at least, seems contrary to a Calvinistic way of thinking.
The conflict is only superficial whenever our natural instincts. Maybe we are to be guided nevertheless by the teaching of Scripture besides us in the Bible teach exactly this to the parables of the Lord Jesus. There is the story of a person who prevailed in a request by means of perseverance in Luke 11 verses five through 10 is a story of a man who lacked food to feed a guest arrived at his home at midnight, went to his neighbor first neighbor did not want to be bothered, but at last he gave the things which were needed because of the man's persistence.
Jesus then repeated his teaching from the sermon on the mount, saying, ask and it shall be given you seek and ye shall find Mark and it shall be opened unto you. In Luke 18 verses one through eight. Jesus told of a widow gained justice from a dishonest judge through a similar course of action and the added, and shall not God avenge his own elect to cry day and night under him, though he bear long with them the same way. Paul wrote to the Thessalonians, pray without ceasing, and he wrote to the Romans, I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ sake and for the love of the spirit that she strive together with me in your prayers. God for me and all of these texts, the emphasis falls on the discipline of prayer and perseverance.
Persistence that is the thing we are to realize our need and then have persistence in seeking its fulfillment as we do this we are also to pray knowing that God sees our needs more than we do and is actually far ahead of us and fulfilling them.
In fact, this is one ministry and perhaps even the greatest ministry of the Holy Spirit. Paul writes likewise the Spirit also help with our infirmity. For we know not what we should pray for as we ought.
Spirit himself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered needed search of hearts. Know with what is the mind of the spirit because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. You see what this means means that God the Holy Spirit not only dwells within us hearing what we say and then responding to it, but he also takes an initiative in prayer, probing our hearts to see our greatest needs and then interpreting our prayers and thought might God, our heavenly father God loves us. He wants to help us and thus he searches us out to see what he can do for us. My sisters and I were very young. I remember what great difficulty we had in our home to discover before Christmas or before birthdays. What we could do for my father. I'm sure he had obvious needs, but also the time it seemed as if he were the only man in the world when everything you like to fish, but he seemed to have all the equipment needed for fishing like to hunt, but we could not help in their most we were always at great pains to discover some need that we could fulfill for them if he would ever drop a hint of some need. We were then quite delighted if we could respond to the need and give him the thing he desired in exactly this way, we are told that our gracious God and heavenly father searches.
Our hearts to see what we need then he delights to answer the need out of his inexhaustible storehouse of blessings.
Now our father, we thank you that you do delight to answer our prayers and that you do answer them. There are those listening were not members of your spiritual family and therefore do not know the privileges of prayer. Give them a sense of their own emptiness and loneliness that they may turn today on those who do believe make your peace, grace, love and mercy. Abide in the sense a new sense of the blessings of prevailing prayer through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. You're listening to the Bible study hours featuring the teaching of Dr. James Boyce.
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The message you just heard as well as other content from Dr. Boyson many reformed teachers, authors and speakers is available at reformed resources as our online store you can get there from the Bible study hour.org hi Mark Daniels, just as the piano replaced the harpsichord and revolutionize the world of music Christ simple statement to do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Revolutionize man's views of ethical standards. The golden rule which is found in the seventh chapter of Matthew, verse 12 is probably the most universally praised statement that Jesus ever made. It's been called the topmost peak of social ethics. The Everest of all ethical teaching.
But anyone who knows the history of ethics knows that this is resulted from the most minute change over the teachings of countless other religious teachers, philosophers and rabbis. What I mean is this. It's not at all difficult to find praiseworthy parallels to this saying in its negative form. Hillel, the renowned Jewish rabbi once said to a follower.
What is hateful to yourself, due to no other. That is the whole law, and the rest is commentary go and learn in the book of Tobit which was probably composed in the third century before Christ is a section in which the hero of the book tells his young son and what thou thyself hate assist due to no man there is a story of a Jewish scholar who instructed in Egyptian king as you wish, that no evil should be for you but to be a partaker of all good things so you should act on the same principle towards your subjects and offenders, and you should mildly admonish the noble and the good many other examples. William Barclay lists these examples, among others, in his commentary also cites parallels in the teachings of Confucius Epictetus.
The Stoics send in the hymns of the faith of Buddhism. They are all similar, but the point is that all of these sayings are negative, they say, do not do anything to anyone that you would not want them to do unto you.
Jesus presented the same truth positively, thereby inverting the saying and of course changing its scope.
Immeasurably Jesus said. Therefore, all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them for this is the law on the prophets.
Because of this apparently small change is correct to say that there is no real parallel to the saying its unique and altogether supply Barclay says this is something which had never been said before, it's new teaching in a new view of life and of life's obligation.
Join Dr. James Boyce as he explores this paradigm shift in the good old man's behavior that's next time one Bible study hour preparing you to think and act