If You Believe
Date: February 21, 2023
I use the BLESS method every morning for my devotional.
B - Bible Verse
L - Listen for God's Word and pray
E - Explore the History and meaning
S - Study and savor
S - Summarize and Share
You can read more about it by going to: What is a Faith Journal?
Bible Scripture Verse – Matthew 21:22
"If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer."
Listen for God’s Voice
Lord, I know that you are a loving God who desires to bless us with good things, but I also know that you do not simply grant our every wish. Help me to discern the difference between the things I want and the things I truly need, and to approach you with a sincere heart, asking for your guidance and help in all things.
As I pray and seek your will, I ask that you would help me to understand the true power of faith and the importance of trusting in you. May my prayers always be aligned with your will, and may I never seek to manipulate or control you through my requests.
Thank you for your love and grace, and for the gift of your Word. I pray that you would continue to guide me as I seek to grow in my relationship with you, and that you would reveal to me the true meaning of today’s verse.
In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.
Explore History – Who wrote it, when and to what audience? Key people in the story?
The book of Matthew was written by the Apostle Matthew, who was also called Levi probably between 70 and 90 AD. It was primarily written for the Jewish Christians because it talks a lot about Jesus’ fulfillment of Jewish prophecies and His position as the long-awaited Messiah.
Study and Savor – Key Words
"Believe" - This refers to having faith and trust in God, and believing that he is able to answer our prayers. In this verse, Jesus emphasizes the importance of believing in order to receive what we ask for in prayer.
"Receive" - This means to accept or be given something that we have requested. In the context of this verse, it refers to receiving the answer to our prayer, which we have asked for in faith.
"Ask" - This means to request or make a petition for something. In this verse, Jesus encourages his disciples to ask God for what they need, and to do so in faith, believing that they will receive what they have asked for.
"Prayer" - This refers to communicating with God through words or thoughts, asking for his help, guidance, or blessings. In this verse, Jesus is teaching his disciples the importance of prayer, and encouraging them to have faith that their prayers will be answered.
"Whatever" - This is a word of unlimited scope, meaning anything or everything that we might ask for. In the context of this verse, it emphasizes the power of faith, as Jesus is telling his disciples that if they believe, they will receive whatever they ask for in prayer.
Summarize and Share
Today’s verse is one that speaks to the power of faith and the importance of prayer in the life of a believer. Jesus was speaking to his disciples and encouraging them to have faith in God, to pray with sincerity and humility, and to trust that God is able to answer their prayers.
When Jesus spoke these words to his disciples, he was teaching them that faith and prayer are not simply ritualistic practices or exercises in wishful thinking. Instead, Jesus was pointing to the fact that God is a loving and compassionate God who desires to hear from his people and to provide for their needs. Jesus was calling his disciples to have faith that God is able to do great things in their lives, and to trust in his goodness and provision.
For us as believers today, this passage is so important to us! First, it reminds us that God is a personal God who desires to hear from us and to provide for our needs. We are called to approach him with humility, sincerity, and faith, trusting that he is able to answer our prayers in the way that is best for us.
At the same time, this passage challenges us to examine our motives and attitudes when we come to God in prayer. It is not appropriate to treat God like a genie, expecting him to grant our every wish and desire. Instead, we are called to approach him with a heart of humility, seeking his will and direction for our lives, and trusting that he is able to provide for our needs.
As we apply this passage to our lives, we are challenged to have faith in God and to trust in his goodness and provision. We are called to approach him with humility and sincerity, seeking his will and direction for our lives, and trusting that he is able to provide for our needs. Whether we are praying for healing, provision, guidance, or any other need, we can trust that God hears our prayers and is able to work in our lives in powerful ways. May we always pray with faith and trust, knowing that our God is a God who is able to do immeasurably more than we could ever ask or imagine.
Bible Cross Reference
Mark 11:24 - "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours." This passage from Mark is similar to Matthew 21:22 in that it emphasizes the importance of faith in prayer. It encourages believers to have confidence in God's ability to answer their prayers and to believe that they have already received what they are asking for in faith.
John 14:13-14 - "And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it." In this passage from John, Jesus is speaking to his disciples about the power of prayer in his name. It relates to Matthew 21:22 in that it emphasizes the importance of praying in faith and seeking God's will in our prayers.
James 5:16 - "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective." This passage from James speaks to the power of prayer in the life of a believer. It relates to Matthew 21:22 in that it encourages believers to approach God in faith, believing that he is able to answer their prayers and provide for their needs.
1 John 5:14-15 - "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him." This passage from 1 John emphasizes the importance of seeking God's will in our prayers. It relates to Matthew 21:22 in that it encourages believers to approach God with a heart of humility and sincerity, seeking his will and direction for their lives, and trusting that he is able to provide for their needs.