When we invade someone’s space we get close up and personal with them, it implies great intimacy. It is this intimacy we are invited into when Jesus tells us to “abide in Him.” John 15:5
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”
Then Jesus makes a direct link between abiding and asking: John 15:7
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
Did you notice that “IF?” Jesus wants us to abide in Him as we ask because then our hearts will be in tune with His, our thoughts will be in line with His and our actions will be in line with His purposes.
- When we abide, His Word has had a chance to sink into our hearts and transform our minds and we are praying in accordance with what He has already said in His word.
- This abiding will also ensure that our requests are in line with His will, promises and purposes and since we have been transformed in our thinking, it gives us confidence that we are asking correctly in His presence. (James 4:2-3)
- When we abide, we know our motivations and our hearts are pure. A heart that is dependent on Him, as a branch is to the vine, is a pure heart. (2 Tim 2:22)
All of the above are the product of abiding in Him i.e. invading His person in a desire to be intimate.
What is asking then? In the same passage, that word ask, which is “aiteo” in Greek, means to demand or insist, not as a person being rude or arrogant, but as a person addressing a superior with respect and honor, much like a soldier would approach a superior. He is fully expecting to receive that which was firmly requested.
It describes one that prays with authority, based on a confident understanding of the relationship between them. It is one who knows what they need and comes boldly to the throne to ask, fully expecting to receive.
Understanding this concept of asking, goes hand in hand with abiding. We do not have to grovel, or sheepishly ask; instead we boldly assert our faith, based on the Word of God and His promises and confidently expect God to move on our behalf. God wants us to ask Him boldly.
In Phil 4:6 we are told “Do not be anxious, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, let your requests by made known to God.”
That word ‘requests’ is also the Greek word “aiteo” and Paul is encouraging us to be bold, authoritative and commanding in our prayers. But he underscores the point that our approach must not be rude or arrogant but rather be filled with gratefulness and thanksgiving. This thankfulness Paul points out is to remind us that we are to be characterized by a thankful heart in our asking.
Finally notice then in John 15:7 that when we abide in Jesus, and out of this place of intimacy and love we then ask: then all that we desire will be given to us.
Oh Lord, let me learn to abide in You before I am asking for anything. Let everything I ask come out of a deep and intimate relationship with You where our hearts are joined together and my thinking is in line with Yours. Let this relationship be the foundation to my boldness in coming to You; my confidence of having my needs met built on our love relationship and my heart soaked in a grateful appreciation of You.
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