I. Ask, Seek, Knock – First Ask
“Do you want to make your mountain move? Then before you start commanding, ask for understanding to lay aside all doubt. That’s what asking is about.” – original quote
“Ask, seek, knock. That’s what the Bible says. “Ask and you shall receive. Seek and you shall find. Knock and the door will be opened.”
Who has never heard this verse before? Perhaps a better question is, what is the hardest part about asking, seeking and knocking?
Let’s discuss the first part, asking.
To some of us, asking can be a hard thing, especially when those close to us reject our requests for information. Despite the saying “There’s no such thing as a dumb question,” people tend to treat questions like dirt. They make the other person feel as if he or she has asked a stupid question. That’s what makes asking hard.
Nevertheless, Jesus instructs us to ask. For if we ask, then we’ll receive an answer. Of course, the best person to ask is God Himself, because He is all powerful. He knows what you need before you even ask Him. Sometimes people don’t ask God anything until they’e desperate. That’s okay, because a question is a question. A request is a request. And if you don’t know what to ask God for, a simple “Help!” will do.
If you’ve ever asked God for something and received an answer, then you know the power of asking.
If not, then maybe you need to seek it.
II. Ask, Seek, Knock – Second, Seek
A. Seek Wisdom
“If you don’t seek, you’re up a creek because you need direction” – original quote
Do you know it’s possible to receive an answer but not recognize it when it comes? Perhaps it’s because you forgot you asked the question. Or maybe you didn’t completely like His answer or got distracted by something else you wanted more. If so, then maybe you’ve been asking the wrong question. Is it possible that God wants something better for you – something you’re not smart enough to think of asking?
If you think God is a know-it-all, you’re right. That’s why you should ask Him for wisdom, because He is more than happy to supply it.
“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all men liberally, and upbraids not; and it shall be given him.” (James 1:5)
In other words, God will never fault you if you ask Him for wisdom.
B. Seek Faith
“But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. for he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord.” (James 1:6-7)
Whoa, what’s this? It seems that asking for wisdom isn’t enough. We need to have faith too. How do we get that?
“Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17)
There’s something about hearing God’s word that gives us faith to receive what we ask from Him.
“And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us: and if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petition that we desired of Him.”
That said, the best way to know God’s will is to know His word. That involves seeking.
After all, how can you know the wisdom contained in God’s word – the wisdom that shows you His perfect will – unless you seek it?
“My son, if you will receive my words, and hide my commands within you; so that you incline your ear unto wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding; yes, if you cry after knowledge, and lift up your voice for understanding; if you seek her as silver, and search for her as for hid treasures; then you shall understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.” (Proverbs 2:1-5)
III. Ask, Seek, Knock – Third, Knock (The hardest part)
“You search the scriptures; for in them you think you have eternal life: and they (the scriptures)…testify of me. And you will not come to me that you might have life.” (John 5:39)
Jesus spoke these words to people who were really into reading the Old Testament but who found fault with Him, the Messiah to whom those scriptures pointed so many years before.
They might have had the asking and seeking down pat, but they didn’t seem to know much about knocking.
To knock involves taking a step of faith toward God, reaching out your hand and tapping on His door.
“I am the door,” Jesus said. “By me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out and find pasture.” (John 10:9)
To “enter in’ involves more than merely asking and seeking. It involves friendship and a willingness to share life together. This is the kind of relationship Jesus spoke of in Revelation 3:20, to quote His words, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to him and sup with him and he with me.”
It is this relationship, this close knowledge of God, that allows you to come boldly before His throne of grace, in order to find grace and mercy to help you in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)
Knocking on God’s door involves submitting to his will, which is perhaps the hardest part of asking, seeking, and knocking. After all, don’t we all like to get our own way? To “ask, seek, knock,” you must surrender all.
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