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Greatest Sermon Ever 21: On Asking
Richard Root
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Greatest Sermon Ever 21: On Asking Jul 5, 2020
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Richard Root Matthew 7:7-11 Sunday Morning
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Sermon -Sunday Morning -2020/07/05 11am -Richard Root -"Greatest Sermon Ever 21: On Asking" -Matthew 7:7-11

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Sermon Notes:

The Sermon on the Mount – 21. On Asking
Matthew 7:7-11

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7: 7-8)

• For the past six months we’re been making our way through the Sermon on the Mount. Recently, we’ve been looking at Jesus’ teachings on how to relate with other people:
1. Do not judge. Overthrow the spirit of condemnation. Remember “prejudgment=prejudice.”
2. Remove the plank from your own eye before you remove the speck from another person’s eye.
3. Last week we looked at Jesus’ teaching on being patient and not forcing and pushing our advice on other people.
• This week, Jesus pivots the focus of the conversation from our relationships with others to our relationship with God himself, our heavenly Father.

On Prayer
• One of the primary ways we interact with God is through prayer. Nine out of ten people say they pray regularly, and three out of four people claim to pray every day.
• If you ask the average person about prayer, they will say that it’s important, that they pray often, but that it’s not very satisfying. As important as people say it is, they experience prayer more often as a burden than as a delight.
“Of all the activities in which the Christ follower engages, and which are part of the Christian life, there is surely none which causes so much perplexity, and raises so many problems, as the activity we call prayer.” — David Martyn Lloyd-Jones
• The main purpose of prayer is not to make life easier. It’s not to get God to do what you want him to do, but simply to know him, to have a relationship with him and, in the process, maybe become a little more like him.
• Jesus compares our relationship with God to that of a child and a parent.
“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?” (Matthew 7:9)
• Jesus depicts God as our heavenly Father, as someone who is eager to give and meet our needs. He is our provider. We are his children, which means our we are to ask, pray, and receive.

Barriers to Prayer
1. If God knows what I need, why do I need to pray or ask?
2. It’s hard to pray when plenty of people around me have everything they need and more without praying for it.
3. I prayed and prayed. God didn’t answer.
God’s promises are not unconditional. His love is. God is not only good, he is wise, and he knows the difference between what is good and what is not.
4. I have trouble trusting anyone who calls himself “Father.”
“If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” (Matt. 7:11)

A Renewed Understanding of Prayer
• The reason why Jesus tells us to pray is because prayer is about our relationship with him. Prayer is the language of relationship. It’s meant to build a connection with God.
• God loves to be asked. He doesn’t need our wisdom or our knowledge, not even the information contained in our prayers. But by inviting us into prayer, God also invites us into a deeper relationship with him.
• In the hardest moments of life, God comes close to us, and he doesn’t change. He doesn’t falter, he doesn’t quit, he doesn’t leave, and he doesn’t let go.
God’s goodness is not dependent on any outcome or what we get. God is good because when those storms come, he comes closer to us than those storms ever can.

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