Ask And Receive
There is always room for the person who asks Jesus for something. If you believe completely in Him, He will not let you down, but will give you what you have asked for.
Alright thank you very much, and hello again radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing all right today? Oh, I trust everything’s going well with you and if for chance you’ve struck a rough day, remember you can look up and say, Lord Jesus see me through this one, and He will. He hath said, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee”. Jesus said one in His last words to His disciples, “Lo, I am with you always even unto the end of the world”. Our Lord Jesus Christ promises not to leave you. His blessed indwelling Holy Spirit is with you to guide you even through the most difficult of days and some of you have struck one like that. I’m praying that God will bless these words to your heart to encourage you to keep on.
Well, now we’re in Mark chapter 7 and it says in verse 24, “From thence He arose and went into the borders of Tyre and Sidon and entered into a house. He would have no man know it, but He could not be hid”. Stop here long enough for small thought. The reality of the Lord Jesus Christ is something that simply will not be concealed. Bob Pierce, now with the Lord of course a number of years, told in my hearing the story of what happened shortly after he as a young boy had given his heart to Christ. On Thursdays a little neighbor boy came to play with him because the boy was staying with a grandmother next door, that sort of thing, and this little neighbor boy looked at Bob Pierce, the week after he had given his heart Christ he said, “What happened to you? You’re different”. Bob, as he told the story chuckled, he said, “Yes, I was different because the week before I tried to hit him with a 2 x 4”. That’s some difference isn’t it? But, even little child can know there’s a difference. I’ve a friend who was a president of a large company in Baltimore, who had one particular person that disliked him, and whom he disliked, but now the Lord Jesus Christ got a hold of my friend, and now he’s coming into the office of this disagreeable man, and the man says, “What happened to you, you’re different”. You see, not a word needs to be said when Jesus is real, He cannot be hid. The problem as I see it, with many of us who call ourselves Christians, is that the Lord Jesus is not at all real in our lives. We may have a formal profession of faith in Him, but He’s not in control of our thoughts and our words and our actions, and as a result, there is no real evidence that Jesus Christ is living within us. That’s something to think about beloved, and something about which you and I may well pray and seek God, for what we need is not a profession. Christianity is not a point of view, not a profession, it’s not a perspective. What we need is a working relationship with a living person, “Christ in you the hope of glory”, says Paul is the secret of the Christian life. It said, “He could not be hid”. If people do not recognize the fact that you and I are Christians, it tells us that or ought to tell us, that He’s not enough in control of our real being, to give evidence that He’s there. Now, you and I don’t have to go around shouting praises and singing hymns, in order to convince people that we‘re Christian. Just the opposite effect is produced by someone who was officially religious.
I have a little Cookism saying that I use sometimes, if you see a man who’s always pious you have to watch him because he’s apt to lie about other things too. No, this whole idea is not that you go around being officially religious, nor indeed that you intrude into people’s privacy with the praises and shouts and all of that. That’s not what we’re talking about. What we’re talking about is the presence of Jesus Christ in your life and in your home, so real the people feel Him when they meet you. I’ve had the joy through the years, oftentimes, of having people come on the campus of the college and say to me, quite sincerely, Brother Cook I felt the presence of the Lord when I came on this campus. Well, halleluiah for that, that’s exactly what we pray for, but we’re coming down to a personal matter now with you beloved. What do people sense when they come in your home? I visited is a pastor for 18 years full-time, I visited in many homes where when you enter the home, you felt the spirit of fighting and dissension because they were consistently at each other’s throats, fighting and arguing. You feel that the minute you come in, and then I’ve come into other homes where there was peace and they invited you in, you sat down, you felt peaceful and you felt good about things. Why? Because God’s presence was there. Now, this is a simple truth, but oh so important beloved. What do people feel when they meet you and me? It says, “He could not be hid”. When the Lord Jesus Christ is real, when He’s in residence, so to speak, in your life, people are going to know about it, they’ll feel His presence, they’ll be glad.
Well anyway in verse 25 of Mark chapter 7 says, “Certain woman whose young daughter had an unclean spirit heard of Him came and fell at His feet. The woman was a Greek, a Ciro-Phoenician, and she besought Him that He would cast forth the demon out of her daughter”. Now, here’s one of those passages that’s hard to understand, except you understand it in the sense that our Lord Jesus was testing her faith. Jesus said, “Let the children first be filled for it is not worthy”, it’s not right, “to take the children’s bread and cast it to the dogs”, and she answered and said to Him, “Ye Lord yet the dogs under the table can eat of the children’s crumbs”, and He said, “For this saying, go thy way, demon is gone out of thy daughter”. “When she was come to her house she found the demon gone out and her daughter laid upon the bed”. What was He getting at there? Well, He said at another place, “I’m not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel”. The truth being that our Lord Jesus, in fulfilling Scripture, was offering Himself first of all as the Messiah to God’s chosen people, and when they had finally rejected Him, He had to say sorrowfully, “Your house is left unto you desolate ye, unless see Me no more until you see Me coming is King of Kings and Lord of Lords”, and so He was acting out in this relationship the fact that He was sent specifically first, to God’s chosen people as their Messiah, and that people who from outside did not have that same offer at that time given to them. The second thing it seems to me that He was doing was that He was testing her faith and in what seemed to be a very curt turn off, He was giving her opportunity to say, yes Lord but I can at least have the crumbs. She took up His own figure of speech gently and reminded Him that she too could be the recipient of God’s merciful favor. Now, what is the point of all this for you and for me 2000 years later? There are some people who obviously seam blessed with, let us say, a first chance to God’s blessing, but the truth is that if you want God’s touch upon your life, you may have it by asking Him for it. She didn’t quit, she didn’t give up, she said, Lord how about some crumbs? The idea being that there is room for the person who is willing to ask and believe. There is always room for the person who is willing to ask and to believe.
Our Lord Jesus told the story of the person who had someone come to visit Him late at night, had nothing to give Him, and he said he’ll go to his neighbor and he’ll ask for some food. His neighbor said, don’t bother me, I’m in bed, but if he keeps on asking, if he keeps on asking it says, “He’ll rise and give him as many as he needeth”. Persistent praying is taught in the Word of God very, very clearly. Persistent praying is taught in the Word of God and so here is this lady, the victim of what seems to us, a very curt turn off, but she says, Lord if you want to use that figure of speech let me, let me say that the dogs can eat the crumbs. If you classify me as a Gentile dog, that’s the way they did it in those days, not a very, not a very kind epithet, but this she said of you classify me that way, them let me have the crumbs. So I referred then to the Luke 11 passage where the man went next door and said, “A friend of mine in his journey has come to me and I have nothing to set before me. Lend me three loaves”. His neighbor says, “Don’t bother me, the door’s shut and I’m in bed. I cannot rise”. Jesus said, “I say unto you, though he will not rise and give him because he’s his friend, yet because of his opportunity he keeps on knocking, he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. I say unto you, ask, that’s the linear verb form, asking and keep on asking, seek and keep on seeking, knock and keep on knocking and it shall be opened unto you, if you being able know how to give good gifts unto your children how much more shall your heavenly father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him”. Now, I refer to that verse in many, many times daily asking God to give me the fullness of His Holy Spirit for every task that I face. You can I ask, you can have which ask for even though you may not think that you have a very favorable position at the time. I’m talking to somebody who says, oh Cook you don’t know what I’m up against. You don’t know my circumstances, you don’t know how bad off we are, you don’t know broke we are, you don’t know how sick I am, you don’t know how deeply hurt I am. Well that’s true beloved, I can’t know because I don’t live inside of your skin, but Jesus knows. We have a high priest who’s touched with the feeling of our infirmities. Oftentimes, you’ve said to your friends or acquaintances, you don’t know how I feel. That’s true for humans, but Jesus knows how you feel. It says, “He’s touched with the feeling of our infirmities”, and so you can come to your Savior and you can keep on praying and keep on trusting Him and you can get the answer that you need. Yes you can hear from heaven if you keep on praying and trusting. That’s the lesson we learn from this Ciro-Phoenician lady who wasn’t willing to quit, but who kept on believing and kept on asking. She got the answer says, “When she came home she found the demon had gone out and her daughter laid upon the bed”. No more restlessness, no more crying out, no more tearing up things, no more evidence of satanic power. Calm, peace, just like the man over in the country the Gaderenes. When people came out they found him clothed and seated at Jesus’ feet and in his right mind. When the Lord Jesus answers prayer He puts things right. When He answers prayer, He sets things right. You can trust Him to do that. Today if you’re facing something that you say, shall I trust God on this or shall I not, be assured beloved, that if you trust God on a matter, He’ll set it right. You won’t have any regrets.
Dear Father today, make us the kind of people who believe Thee for the answer even though it may not seem to come the way we want it, help us to trust Thee because we know Thou hast never failed us, in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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