Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be made full. (John 16:24)
We have heard the following many times, and have even said or thought the same ourselves that "God does not hear me, care about me or answer my prayers". This statement is not true at all, in light of Scripture and the protocols of Abba Father, Who hears all His Children and processes in His own time and according to His own holy Will!.
It is understood that we are positioned to be praying to the Father, in Jesus' Name through our adoption as His sons and daughters (based on John 1:12). Therefore, we are authorized to approach the Throne of Grace for His Grace, Favor and Mercy in all things, according to His purposes. This key verse in our journey to understanding the "Power Prayer Life" from John 16:24, gives us the condition. This condition is similar to a math equation: if you add one plus one, you will get two!
It is this simple, ask IN FAITH (knowing that God only hears the prayers of the righteous, and those asking for His forgiveness and salvation) and thou shalt receive. Therefore, this equals peace, joy, contentment and victory in Jesus! To fully grasp this what this joy really is, please understand that praying in the Name of Jesus is not a chant, mantra or formula for yours or mine own selfish pursuits, but a powerful and humbling realization and acknowledgement that we are nothing, can do nothing and deserve nothing UNLESS we are in the Presence of the Name above All Names! This is the true conditional status of the intercessors, prayer warriors and just plain old Christian like you or I who pray daily (or several times per day) to the Father!
In My name - means just that! It means we are praying as directly commissioned by Him, to seek His presence and intervention for our prayer requests. Please do not neglect or misunderstand what this truly is. This is the Creator of ALL things, paying direct and close attention to seemingly insignificant people like us! Who am I that the King would bleed and die for (as they song says) and then when He returns to His throne after the Ascension, send His Spirit to live in those He saves.....THEN LISTENS TO OUR PRAYERS??!! Who are we indeed? Blessed and more fortunate than we can ever imagine is the response!
Your joy may be made full - This is truly an amazing statement by God the Son! He simply says "ask in My Name....and your joy will be complete"! The true meaning of this is both amazing and even unfathomable. The original word "Joy" here is "chara" or "xara" and means, in essence, that the awareness of the Heavenly Favor of God will be so present in your own spirit that the resulting joy and exuberance in your spirit will want to cause you to leap, jump and dance for joy in your heart. It exemplifies the presence of God's goodness in the life of the Christian which, if the Christian is properly submitted and committed to the Will of Christ, will burst forth and show all over his/her countenance. This, my friends, is the condition we find ourselves if we are prayerful obedient servants who seek the very Face and Presence of the Master, as much as we can, during each day!
Does God owe us a response? In general, God owes us nothing, but because of Jesus' Sacrifice on the Cross, He has given us everything and that includes access to the Throne through prayer! He has promised us, when we pray like this, in the Name of His Son? Yes He does and those promises can ALL be found in His literal, inerrant and Holy Word.
He says in John 15:16 "You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you." Regardless of anything else, that very fact - that GOD HIMSELF CHOSE US. This means everything and like any good parent, the Father listens to and responds to us!
The Bible also says in 1 John 5:14 "This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us." After knowing that our Father has chosen us, how can we help NOT having confidence? The wonderful thing about being saved and called a child of Christ is we inherit eternity. An upcoming post will discuss what eternity really means - past, present and future.
This inheritance is more than just the blessed hope of living in anticipation of a future heaven. It is about living in the NOW, with confidence (as the verse tells us), that we can appropriate every aspect of our lives to His safe keeping as no one cares for as God does! Praying in the Name of Jesus is not just a stock ending to a prayer we are supposed to "say" or "mumble" like some pagan mantra. It is the sole and exclusive privilege of the blood-bought son or daughter of Christ, and thus God the Father, who knows the Heart of the Father and how He loves us. It is therefore, this love, which compels us to boldly approach the Throne of Grace, in Jesus' Strong and Powerful Almighty Name, in humility and but with confident hope - that He would do what He said He would. Amen.