Summary: John 16:24 tells us to ask. Let’s look at what that means.
• START WITH VIDEO ON PRAYER.
• SLIDE #1
• Today we are going to look at another life verse that will help us to live out the kind of faith that God wants us to live.
• How many times do we feel all alone in our quest to live for Jesus? How many times have we lifted up some kind of prayer to God only to seemingly to have it go unanswered?
• I remember several occasions when I had uttered a prayer in the direction of God only to feel that it was not heard.
• That left me feeling empty and confused. Have you ever had that experience?
• Aren’t we told to prayer to God all the time?
• 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to pray without ceasing. Why would we be told to do that if it makes no difference? Is God messing with our minds?
• Today we are going to look at a passage in which Jesus encourages His followers to do something.
• If we are going to live the life that God want us to live, we MUST realize that we have a wonder gift that god has given to us.
• Today we are going to look at what Jesus promises to us as we look at John 16:24. It is my prayer that you will take the time this week to memorize this simple passage, that you will let it penetrate the depths of your soul!
• Let’s turn to John 16:24
• In this passage, Jesus is getting near the end of His time on earth. He has told the 12 that He was going to die and be raised. The disciples are a little confused, and so Jesus comforts them.
• Jesus explained to the disciples that his departure would only last “a little while” (actually only three days), for he would see them again on the day of his resurrection. Then a new relationship between the disciples and Jesus’ Father would begin. They would then be able to approach God the Father as his children and bring to him their requests through prayer. (Life Application Bible)
• Let’s look at our text.
• SLIDE #2
• John 16:24 (NASB) 24“Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be made full.
• As we look at this verse, the first thing I want us to see is that there is a problem.
• SLIDE #3
I. THE PROBLEM.
• As we look at verse 24, the problem that we see is the fact that the disciples had not been praying for things in the name of Jesus.
• Jesus is not rebuking the disciples for this problem because they has not been taught to pray in that manner.
• When you think back to the model prayer found in Matthew 6:5-15, Jesus does not tell them to pray in His name, He tells them to pray to the Father who is in heaven.
• He tells them that until now (the time before the resurrection) they had not prayed in His name, but AFTER the resurrection that they would be able to pray to Jesus.
• The issue we have to understand is what does Jesus mean when He tells us to pray in His name?
• Is praying in the name of Jesus simply an exercise of reciting your list of things you want God to do, and then at the end, say, “In Jesus name I prayer”?
• If we do not understand what it means to pray in the name of Jesus, or to ask in His name, we could end up not having a lot of faith in the power of prayer.
• The answer to this question is pretty easy once you think about it.
• To pray in the name of Jesus means that we are to pray for the things that Jesus would want us to pray for.
• This thought is similar to the situation of an ambassador. When we send an ambassador to another country in the name of the United States, we expect them to represent the values and wishes of the United States.
• When we pray in the name of Jesus, we are supposed to represent what He wants.
• I wonder how many prayers go seemingly unanswered because what we are praying for is not within the will and character of our Lord.
• Oh, God, please let me win the lottery! God did not answer the prayer for me, so I guess prayer does not work.
• This is how many people put prayer to the test, they will ask for something THEY want, and when THEY do not get it, they turn on God.