“In that day you will not question Me about anything. Truly, truly I say to you, if you ask the Father anything in My name, He will give it to you.” (John 16:23)
It is interesting how many Christians totally ignore the first part of this verse, in their rush to claim the second part of it.
They are ready to “Ask the Father anything in My name, (and) He will give it to you” — what a great promise, they think! But unfortunately they IGNORE that the first part of the verse, which precedes that promise, spoke about how Jesus’ disciples would not QUESTION Him about anything — because if they asked the Father, He would give it to them.
In other words, Jesus was saying that what the Father would “give” them, was the ANSWERS to the questions they would have about Him. Thus this is NOT the material “give me whatever I ask” promise that many think it is. Rather it refers to the spiritual insights that the Lord will give them regarding the knowledge of Himself, His kingdom, and His ways. It is a much less “material”, and much more “spiritual” application than many of us have realized.
But it is also an encouragement: if we ask God things regarding the knowledge of His kingdom, and HIMSELF (the greatest knowledge there is) then “He will give it to you”! SO LET’S ASK for these things! Let others ask for cars and homes and money. You “Seek first the kingdom …” and let those lesser things be added to you as God wills (Matthew 6:33).
Appreciated this Shawn. I guess I was under the same impression as most people, but asking in the context of Scripture which would be according to God’s will, and His answering me according to His will and purposes for my life. That answer could be yes, wait, or no. Whatever His response, would be His good and perfect will for me, regardless of what I may think. I appreciate this clarification, but wonder if there is any application to my initial interpretation.