Will God Give Us Anything We Ask?

I John 3:21 – 23 – “Dear friends, if we don’t feel guilty, we can come to God with bold confidence. And we will receive from him whatever we ask because we obey him and do the things that please him. And this is his commandment: We must believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as he commanded us. Those who obey God’s commandments remain in fellowship with him, and he with them. And we know he lives in us because the Spirit he gave us lives in us.” NLT

John 16:23 – 24 –“I tell you the truth, you will ask the Father directly, and he will grant your request because you use my name. You haven’t done this before. Ask, using my name, and you will receive, and you will have abundant joy.” NLT

I have been asked to interpret what these verses mean that say “if we don’t feel guilty, we can come to God with bold confidence (or trust). And we will receive from Him whatever we ask because we obey Him and do the things that please Him.”

It looks like there are some stipulations:

1. We must not feel guilty.
2. We must obey God’s commands.
3. We must live and do the things that please Him.
4. We must know what the Lord’s will is to please Him.
5. We must believe in His Son, Jesus Christ
6. We must love one another as God loves us.
7. We must ask in the name of Jesus.

What is our answer to these seven requirements? If we can say yes to all seven stipulations it is my belief that God will give us anything we ask. However, the Bible is very clear that God tells us how we can meet our needs or become prosperous. It is very simple: we are to owe no one and we are not to live as the world lives. We are not to put material goals and lusts before spiritual goals and desires.

The fact is anyone in America can make it. Opportunities are limited only to one’s imagination, willingness to take some risks and work hard. There has been some speculation that Americans are drifting into two classes of people: the upper-class and the under-class. Regardless of whether this is true, no one is relegated to one class or the other. Anyone can break into the upper-class and any one can fall into the under-class.

One of the by-products of this freewheeling, anything-goes society is an army of people manufacturing products and providing services and marketing them to other people. Competition can be vicious as each tries to outdo the other. In many cases making money has not been as much of an American problem as spending it.

Most do not realize how many people have spent themselves into debt and have little chance of getting out. We have had people come to us asking that we prescribe a cure for their ailing financial situation that is near terminal. I sometimes feel like a doctor asked to heal a patient with a thirty year history of overeating, overdrinking, heavy smoking and physical inactivity. There isn’t much a doctor can do with arteries that are already clogged, lungs that are already destroyed and a liver akin to a piece of shoe leather! They may have prayed with the above Scriptures in mind but it seems God has not met their financial needs. So what do you tell someone like this? Let’s take the test. How many of the seven requirements have you met in 1 John 3:21-23?

First, it appears we have not developed the right priorities in life. It seems many assign priorities wearing intellectual blinders. If you delve into their finances you will find it quite incredible. The only consolation that we can really give them is: join the party. You are behaving like most Americans and today’s recession proves it. So where do we start to correct the problem? God demands that we tithe, are you? Then you ought to feel guilty, you missed God’s command and you may have not pleased Him. You missed stipulations one, two and three. Shall we go any farther or are you getting the message? So if you are deeply in debt and God isn’t answering your prayer maybe you will understand. (I was only asked to interpret Scripture not necessarily give the solution to getting out of debt.)

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