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Portraits of Jesus

Today's Meditation

Meditations:

More Abundant Living!

Knowing and
Experiencing God


Promises


Portraits

 

Ask and Receive that Your Joy May Be Full!

"Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full" John 16:23.

God delights to give. He is full of compassion, and He longs to grant the requests of those who come to Him in faith. He gives to us that we may serve others and thus be like Him. Jesus declared, "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened." Jesus continued, "What man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him" Matthew 7:7, 8.

To strengthen this message of asking and receiving, Jesus reinforces it by saying, "Whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it" John 14:13, 14.

Previously, Jesus had given instruction to His disciples on prayer by saying, "Have faith in God. For assuredly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

"And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses" Mark 11:22-25.

In order to strengthen our confidence in God, Christ teaches us to address Him as our "Father who is in heaven." God regards those who put their faith and trust in Him as members of His family. He has redeemed us out of a careless world and has chosen us to become members of His royal family, sons and daughters of the Highest Authority in heaven and earth. He invites us to trust Him with a trust deeper and stronger than that of a child in his earthly parents. Parents love their children, but the love of God is larger, broader and deeper than human love can comprehend. He gave the supreme gift of His Son for everyone who will put their faith and trust in Him to adopt them into His royal family and give them eternal life (John 3:16, 17). If earthly parents know how to give good gifts to their children, how much more will our Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask of Him?

Our prayers are not to hoard God's benefits and blessings for self alone. We are to ask that we may give. The principle of Christ's life was one of sharing the gifts He received from His Father and our Father (John 20:17) with those He came in contact with. He came to bless and to benefit others. He came "to seek and to save that which was lost" Luke 19:10. Our mission is not just to please ourselves, we are here to share with others the blessings God shares with us. In so doing we cooperate with Him to benefit and bless others. Our capacity for receiving is magnified by imparting what He has shared with us.

Those who bring their petitions to God, claiming His promise while they do not comply with the conditions, insult Jehovah. They use the name of Jesus as their authority for the fulfillment of His promises, but they do not do the things that would show their faith in Him and love for Him. The promise is "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples" John 15:7, 8.

David talks about the joy of being in relationship with the Lord and the way to receive that Joy. "You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore" Psalm 16:11.

"You will show me the path of life!" Throughout the Scriptures God shares with us His instructions on the path of life that leads to fullness of joy. "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path" Psalm 119:105. "The path of the just is like the shining sun, that shines ever brighter unto the perfect day" Proverbs 4:18. "Ponder the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established. Do not turn to the right or the left. Remove your foot from evil" Proverbs 4: 26, 27.

God's instructions and promises are for His family and they are full of blessings and benefits. "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope" Jeremiah 29:11. God's plans and purposes for His family are full of joy and hope.

There is "fullness of joy" in the presence of the Lord! "He remembered His holy promise and Abraham His servant. He brought out His people with joy, His chosen ones with gladness. He gave them the lands of the Gentiles, and they inherited the labor of the nations, that they might observe His statutes and keep His laws. Praise the Lord!" Psalm 105:42-46. This is not only a historical reference, it's also a representation of what is yet to come when the God of heaven establishes His kingdom on earth (see Daniel 2:44, 45).

Thank you God, for all that You share with us through the Scriptures, Your love, Your joy, Your instructions, Your promises, Your Son and Your Holy Spirit! Thank You!

 
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