June 8, 2017
Over these past few chapters Jesus has been careful to repeat himself on a particular issue no less than six times. Did you catch it?
1. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14:13
2. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. 14:14
3. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 15:7
4. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 15:16
5. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 16:23
6. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. 16:24
These texts might be filed in the folder labeled, “Not true or I’m not getting it.” Of course we know they are true so we must try to ascertain why we aren’t getting it. I think it must be a deficiency in our discipleship. Is it any wonder Jesus waits until the end to share these teachings.
It’s a weak analogy but think of it like this. I’m not going to give my children a credit card until I am satisfied they have reached a level of maturity and character that they can be trusted with such responsibility.
The name of Jesus is an enormous power and an even greater stewardship. Our capacity to steward this kind of power will never exceed our capacity to sublimate our self interest to the interest of Jesus. That’s our problem isn’t it: the protection of our own self interest. Discipleship to Jesus is not about having no self interest, it’s about abiding in a state of trusting surrender to Jesus, who alone satisfies our self interested-ness with the interest of his Kingdom. Is this not the meaning of, “Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added to you”?
I’m pretty sure this is all true and even more sure I am ready to start getting it at a whole new level. Praying in the name of Jesus is not magic, just miraculous. And there’s a world of difference.
Abba Father, we thank you for your Son, Jesus, who teaches us what it means to abide in his name, to ask and seek and knock and to receive and to find and to have the door opened. Disciple us to the kind of maturity that we live in the flow of your Kingdom and discover complete joy. We pray in Jesus name. Amen.
- Why do you think Jesus was so explicit and so repetitive about our learning to ask in his name?
- Why is it so difficult to sublimate our own self interest to the interest of Jesus?
- Where are you most challenged in your discipleship today?
Join the Daily Text Fasting Challenge here. Whenever you sign up, it will begin the following Tuesday.
J.D. Walt, is a Bond Slave of the Lord Jesus Christ. firstname.lastname@example.org.