November 28, 2018
Knock and the Door Shall Be Opened
In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus had a lot to say about the goodness of God and our Fathers willingness to provide for His children. He urged His followers not to engage in materialistic worry, saying, “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (Mathew 6:26; ESV) He added, “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:31-33; ESV)
ASK SEEK KNOCK
As Jesus reached the finish of His sermon, He concluded, “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 the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are 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 7:7-11; ESV)
Contrary to what some teach today, Jesus was not advocating a Gospel of Prosperity. To the contrary, those who seek after physical riches, and an earthly reward, are disdaining the command of Christ not to lay up treasures on earth, but instead to lay up spiritual treasures. (cf. Matthew 6:19-21) People praying earnestly for carnal things need to carefully consider the words of James, the brother of our Lord, who stated, “You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” (James 4:3; ESV)
Nevertheless, the promise of Jesus is rather significant, especially with regards to spiritual rewards, which, throughout the Sermon on the Mount, is what Jesus urges His followers to seek. Again, “Seek first the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 6:33a)
If it is true those who ask, seek and knocks for the spiritual blessings God wants to bestow, is going to have those doors opened to them and find what they are looking for, then we must also conclude that those who fail to find these blessings failed to properly seek after them. Or perhaps, when they asked, and God opened the door, they failed to go through it.
God has demonstrated that He is willing and ready to save men. He sent His Son to be the propitiation for the sins of those who were willing to put their faith in Him (cf. John 3:16). He spoke to men, inspiring righteous men to write down His expectations for us. In these writings we see the power of God unto salvation (cf. Romans 1:16) and we gain that knowledge necessary to make us wise unto salvation (cf. 2 Timothy 3:15). If God was willing to sacrifice His only Son on the behalf of men, demonstrating his love and good will towards us, why would He not be willing to work providentially to open doors and answer prayers on behalf of those who truly wanted to be saved.
We see an example of this in Acts 10, where Cornelius, a good man, is sent an angelic visitation, telling him that his prayers have gone up before God and that he should send to Joppa, for Peter, who would
give him words by which he and his household would be saved. (cf. Acts 10:1-5; 11:14) Cornelius prayed, God directed him where to go, and Cornelius took the opportunity and obeyed. A little earlier in Acts, we have the account of the Ethiopian Eunuch, who was also seeking for spiritual guidance. God sent him a preacher named Phillip. (cf. Acts 8:26-40) The Ethiopian gladly received this guidance and obeyed the Gospel.
God may not send angels to guide preachers and teachers your way, but if you are genuinely looking for spiritual answers, God will answer. If you are knocking at His door, God will open that door. Just make sure when the door opens, you enter through it.
Have a blessed week.