Exactly how bold can you dare to be in prayer? Do you have the right to come into the Presence of God and make certain demands of Him? What are your rights, your limitations, and your boundaries when it comes to the issue of prayer?
Jesus used an attention-grabbing word in John 15:7 when He was speaking to the disciples about prayer. The King James Version says, “… Ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” The Greek word “ask” destroys any religious suggestion that we are lowly worms who have no right to come into the Presence of God. It also destroys the picture that we must pitifully beg and plead for the things we need of the Lord. You see, the word “ask” is the Greek word aiteo, a word that means to be adamant in requesting and demanding assistance to meet tangible needs, such as food, shelter, money, and so forth.
Although this word aiteo means to demand or to insist, it does not give a believer license to be arrogant or rude in his approach to God. In fact, in the New Testament, the word aiteo is used to portray a person addressing a superior. The person may insist or demand that a certain need be met, but he approaches and speaks to his superior with respect and honor. Additionally, the word aiteo expresses the idea that one possesses a full expectation to receive what was firmly requested.
There is no doubt that this word describes someone who prays authoritatively, in a sense demanding something from God. This person knows what he needs and is so filled with faith that he isn’t afraid to boldly come into God’s Presence to ask and expect to receive what he has requested.
Some people are disturbed by this idea of “demanding” something from God. However, they wouldn’t find this particular concept of prayer so disturbing if they kept it in context with the entire verse.
The first part of John 15:7 gives the key: “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you….”
Jesus knew that if His words take up permanent residency in your heart and mind, you will never ask for something that is out of line with His will for your life. His Word will so transform your mind that your prayers will always be in accordance with what He has already said. In fact, this transformation process is what gives you the confidence to boldly come into God’s Presence and make your requests known! You ask boldly because you already know it is what He wants to do!
When you know you are praying according to the will of God, you don’t have to sheepishly utter your requests. Rather, you can boldly assert your faith and expect God to move on your behalf! To tell the truth, God wants you to act boldly and courageously in prayer. He wants you to seize His will for your life and demand that it come into manifestation! He’s just waiting for you to ask!
And don’t think that you can only come to God for spiritual blessings. As noted earlier, the word aiteo used in John 15:7 primarily has to do with requesting things of a physical and material nature, such as food, clothes, shelter, money, and so forth. Jesus plainly stated in Matthew 6:33 that if we seek the Kingdom of God first, God will see to it that all the material things we need are provided. On the other hand, James 4:2 teaches that believers often do not have what they need because they don’t ask!
Philippians 4:6 says, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” The word translated “request” is also the word aiteo. By using aiteo in this verse, Paul also urges us to be bold, authoritative, and commanding. However, he underscores the point that our approach to God must not be rude and arrogant but rather filled with gratefulness and thanksgiving. This means we should have a thankful, grateful heart as we come to make our requests known.
As you allow God’s Word to take an authoritative role in your heart and mind and you give that Word the freedom to transform your thinking, your mind will become renewed to God’s will. When that happens, it will cause you to pray in accordance with His plan for your life. Once you are in this position, you are ready to experience this aiteo kind of prayer. That’s when you can begin to boldly, courageously, and confidently move into higher realms of prayer to obtain the petition you desire of God! As you make your bold requests known to God, take the time to show your respect by thanking Him for all He has done in your life!
MY PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, I’m so glad that I can be bold and straight to the point when I come into Your Presence. I am so thankful that You want me to boldly present my needs to You and expect You to answer my requests. Jesus told me to boldly ask, so it is right for me to do just that! Today I come before You to tell You about some big needs I have in my life—and because I know You want to bless and help me, I am releasing my faith, fully expecting to receive what I request of You today!
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
MY CONFESSION FOR TODAY
I confess that I am bold when I come to God in prayer. Because Jesus beckons me to come to the Father with bold, frank, and confident requests, I make my needs known to God and fully expect Him to answer me. He is my Father, and I am His child. He WANTS me to be bold enough to ask Him to meet my needs, and He promises never to withhold any good thing from me!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
QUESTIONS FOR YOU TO CONSIDER
- Have you ever felt like you needed to beg and plead for God to do something in your life?
- How is the teaching going to change your prayer life?
- Can you think of one thing you can boldly ask God to do for you today?