In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking and the door will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7 HCSB)
In this passage, we see three words (activities) that are related to prayer. Some suggest that these are synonymous—just three different ways of saying the same thing related to prayer. To be honest, there have been times where I have thought this. But, in my more recent study, I seem to be impressed that there is some point of distinction that Jesus is drawing to our attention.
Regardless, this passage does help us to see a basic principle about prayer. My prayer life is in exact proportion to my dependence upon God. How much I depend on God determines how much I pray.
Notice 2 things about these verses. One, the verbs are present tense which alerts us to continuing action. Secondly, there does seem to be an increase in the fervency of the praying.
Dependency leads to consistency in our praying. Not in the sense of twisting God’s arm, but in the sense of continual dependence upon God.
We also see in this passage a second guiding truth. We could call it the powerful promise of prayer. God answers.
You say wait a minute, “God doesn’t always answer my prayer.” Notice the illustration that follows in this passage. It’s of a father and a son. A father gives what is right. The point that Jesus is making is that if we being evil do that for our children, how much more does a God who is perfect and able. In Ephesians 3:20, Paul ends his prayer, “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to His power that works within us.”
I have discovered recently in my life that there are certain things that I am asking God for, other things that I am seeking God about, and yet other things that I am in a continued state of knocking. What about you?