ABIDING AND PRAYER

 John 15:7: “ If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish,
and it shall be done for you

 Notice the conditions that Jesus lays down.
There are two.
Two words:“Abide” and “Ask” = All.

 As we abide, it is His life in us.
Our life is forevermore His.
As we abide in Christ we shall have firmer confidence, richer joy, greater stability,
more communion with Jesus, and greater delight in our Lord.
We must abide!

 If we abide in Christ in daily fellowship, it will be easy to pray as we should.
He has promised to abide in those who abide in Him.
His life in us assures us of constant fellowship with our Lord.
Abiding will produce in us desires and petitions similar to those which He unceasingly
presents to His Father.

 So, when we abide in Jesus, prayer comes spontaneously even as roses naturally shed
their sweet fragrances.
Prayer is the natural out gushing of a soul in communion with Jesus.

  • Just as the leaf and the fruit will naturally come out of the vine,
    so prayer naturally buds and blossoms out of those souls who are abiding in Christ.
  • As sure as the stars shine, abiders pray.
  • They do not say to themselves, “Now is the time to pray
    No! They pray as hungry men eat - that is, when the desire comes upon them.
  • They don’t cry out: “I ought to be in prayer, but I don’t feel like it. It is such an effort. "
    No! They rejoice to pray.
  • Those who abide in Jesus open the day with prayer.
    Prayer surrounds them as an atmosphere all day long. At night they fall asleep praying.

 So Abide!

 Habitual asking comes out of abiding in Christ.
“ If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask: and ye shall not cease from asking
Ask what you will.
Ask, and it shall be done for you.
We may ask anything for which we have the will (Greek present tense) at any time.

  • We - as remaining in Jesus with our will
  • We - with His (Word) utterances remaining in us
     
  • We - who will seek and will nothing “apart from Jesus
  • We will nothing contrary to His Word. Our will will be to bear much fruit.

 The verb “ask” is the imperative: “ Ask for yourselves
It means we must ask.

 The Vine orders the branches to ask of it all that it is able to give,
and there is no question about the receiving: it shall be done for you.

 So every branch must abide, but what about the asking?
Go and look at a vine.
Get close to it and listen.
You cannot hear anything, but if you could, you would hear every branch praying.
You would also hear the Vine answering the branches prayers.
Every branch is dependent upon the sap, the life of the vine-branch, the life element for
sustenance to support it and to strengthen it and to produce the needed fruit.

If you could see inside the branches, you would see the answer to the branches’ prayer
that always comes - movement.
You would see the movement of life moving up from the vine stem into the branches
pressing along toward the production of fruit.

 So, Jesus said: “If you abide
“You can ask whatever you will."
That is the most amazing thing ever said about prayer.
The condition is that we abide. Prayer is now as much a necessity of our spiritual life as our breath is to our natural life.
We cannot live without asking of our Lord!
“ If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask: and ye shall not cease from asking

 "Ye shall ask what ye will and it shall be done for you."
He doesn’t speak of what we, ourselves, should be enabled to do, but of what should be done unto us.
He doesn’t say, “ Strength shall be given you and you will be sufficient for all your religious activities."
He does not say, “ If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall do spiritual things

He says: “ YE SHALL ASK!”

  • Do you long to be completely filled with His Spirit? Then ask!
  • Do you seek to be holy? Then ask!
  • Do you want patience? Then ask!
  • Do you want to bear the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, etc.? Then ask!
  • Do you want to overcome the world? Then ask!
  • Do you need the Son to ripen your fruit? Then ask?
  • Is the dew or the rain needed? Then ask?

 The Father wants to give these things!
Ask!
God will not overlook your work and labor of love.

 Ask for all but the pruning; this the Father will administer, according to the good pleasure of His goodness. Can you not clearly see why the branch gets all it wants while it abides in the vine,
since all it wants is already in the stem and placed there for the sake of the branch.

What does the branch want more than the stem can give it?
If it did want more, it could not get it; for it has no other means of living but by receiving its life
out of the vine stem.

 So, we must cry out:
“ O, my precious Lord, if I want anything which is not in Thee, I desire always to be without it.
I desire to be denied my wish which wanders outside of Thyself

 If the supply of all I need or will ever need is already in Thee for me, why should I go elsewhere?
Thou art my All!
Where else could I look?

 So, we are assured.
Ask what we will, and we shall have it, since He already has it for us.

 Sad to say, there are those here to whom this text says nothing at all.
For some of you are not even in Christ, and therefore you cannot abide in Him.
Your first need is to believe in Jesus Christ as your Saviour.
Receive Him as your personal Saviour!

If you have questions about how to do that, please ask.
So, first , you must be born again.
You must have been made anew in Christ.
Then, and only then, you may enjoy all the precious, prevailing privileges of abiding in Christ.
Then, His Words will abide in you. Then, all the wonderful blessings of abiding will be yours.

 ABIDE + ASK =ALL

 This sermon was prepared by Dr. Harold L. White
 

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