If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!
Jesus has been helping us see that barriers and the inconvenience of prayer is normal, so He encourages us to keep asking, seeking and knocking—to keep praying until we break through. He wants us to break through our wrong perceptions of who God is, those barriers that hinder us from receiving from Him.
But here, Jesus goes beyond, revealing something truly special at the end of this parable and illustration. He shows what the Father is longing to give us. He longs to give us Himself, the very presence and fullness of God, His very Spirit, the Holy Spirit. This is too wonderful to explain, too wonderful for our minds to comprehend, so it’s easy to miss the significance of what He’s saying.
The disciples listening and hearing this would’ve been astonished. In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit, because of the sinfulness of man, was only given and graced to certain individuals—to usher in and be part of the story of the One who would enable all flesh to one day receive the Holy Spirit. His name is Jesus Christ.
So Jesus reveals the ultimate aim for us His kids, us as humans. He is revealing what it means to be fully alive. He is revealing that prayer, or asking in faith, is in fact the way by which we as humans become fully alive. The Father longs to make us fully alive, and it is prayer in Jesus’ name that gives us the Spirit that originally breathed into us true life that was lost because sin. Now in Christ we can pray and ask and receive what our hearts have been longing for.
This is why Jesus tells us to not stop asking, seeking, knocking—because what we are asking, seeking and knocking for is life itself. He promised life and life in abundance, and this is how we receive it, through the prayer of faith.
So many times our faith is reserved for career, success, dreams, personal progress; and these are all good things, but they mean nothing in the end if we are not alive in Him. This is why Jesus won’t stop reminding us and refocusing us to pray. Faith is given to us to enable us to come alive, to defeat sin, to overwhelm the enemy, to break down fear, to push back confusion, to dissipate anxiety as we ask the Father in Jesus’ name. With the faith that we have, He will give us His Holy Spirit.
We were designed to house the Holy Spirit. It is prayer that opens the door to welcome the Person that will make us come alive. Our houses, or our lives, are empty without Him. We can fill our houses or lives with materialism, things of this world, riches, success, fame, even other people, but in the end none of these things have the ability to make us come alive. Prayer welcomes in the the Spirit from the Father that makes us alive. This is why Jesus died and rose again. To make us alive in Him. He died so that all hindrances to life, or His Spirit entering our lives, were removed.
If I as a dad want to give my sons, Brooks and Zeph, a great life, how much more does our Heavenly Father want to give us life itself, life that comes from His Spirit, life that comes from Him? So He has promised to anyone who asks, seeks and knocks that He will give us Himself, Life and Life in abundance.
Let’s ask for the greatest gift a human could ever receive, to be fully alive. We may have asked years ago to receive Jesus, but this is a daily ask to be filled afresh and refilled with life, His Holy Spirit.
// Pastor Josh Kelsey