5 May, 2019 – Matthew 7:7-12 – The Bible doesn’t promise that God will change the circumstances of our life and remove all the difficulties and problems. The Lord often reminded us (John 16:32-33) that ‘there will be trouble’, but we are not alone in our trouble. We walk through this life as Abraham did, not knowing where he was going, but knowing the One who was with him, who would never forsake him. The Lord, in Matthew 7, confirms the amazing promise given to those who believe in him, the promise of God’s inexhaustible love for us, the love of the heavenly Father, who knows the best for, who wills the best for us, and who will never fail in giving us His best.
In the context of the judgement, we came to realize how hopeless and powerless we are, and desperately in need of the grace of God in our life. Reading through the Lord’s sermon, we say amen when he tells us to be all that a Christian should be and to be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect, and yet we see ourselves so far from the goal we have in Christ. But in the same moment we realize our insufficiency in the light of God’s perfect grace, we also see this beautiful promise – ‘ask and it will be given to you’. All that we need for a godly life and God’s divine power has already been made available for us (2 Peter 1:3-4) through the knowledge of the only true God and His son Jesus Christ (John 17:3). Luke 11:13 records the words of Jesus more specifically – the object of our seeking and knocking is first God himself. And when we receive the Holy Spirit, we will have peace in whatever we are facing in life, because we know our Father who knows all and is concerned about me, Father who is watching me and desires the best for me. I might pray and not know which way is best for me, but he guides my steps to the goal without failure. He will never lead us wrong way, he doesn’t make a mistake in what he gives us.
And so knowing we are in the arms of such a great Father, let us seek, ask and knock, because all we need is perseverance. We often start well but soon find ourselves slacking, that is our problem. So the Lord emphasizes that we must keep knocking, that we must pray without ceasing (1 Thess 5:17) until the end, because all that is good has already been given to us in Christ Jesus. Let us then live seeking the fulness of the Holy Spirit, his love, grace, peace, patience, righteousness, forgiveness and all that is good and He will give us all, just as he gave us himself on the cross. And may this great truth and principle govern our attitude towards others, because the golden rule in Matthew 7:12 is not just an out-of-context moral rule, but those who know God as our Father, who wants the best for us, cannot want anything less for others and live imitating His love.