We find written in the book of James not only a promise but instruction as to how to pray. James is often referred to in the history of the early church as 'James the Just' or 'James the Greater' and was the half brother of Jesus and a leader of the early church. In early church history we learn that James was such a devoted man of prayer that he had large knees with thick calluses that looked like the knees of a camel. He was martyred in Jerusalem by being beaten to death while praying for his attackers.

James teaches us that we are able to ask God for anything we lack; indeed God is the only one who can meet our needs and only waits for us to come to Him in faith to do so. He not only wants to give us the things we need but wants to give them liberally. But let us ask in faith; our request for wisdom must be made like all other requests we make of God Ė IN FAITH, without doubting His desire or ability to give us His wisdom. By asking in faith, without doubt, we are showing the kind of heart we need in seeking Godís wisdom, a heart that believes Godís word, and believes it speaks to us today and is relevant to our lives.

ďAnd upbraideth not,Ē James adds this to assure us that God does not despise our requests but receives them without reproach, for He is ever ready to pour His blessings upon us without any limitation. Those looking for true wisdom will always ask of God then turn to the source of all wisdom. True wisdom will always be consistent with Godís word. I have found that as I grow closer and stronger in my walk by faith the scriptures open up to me and I find myself gaining understanding where once there were only words. As I learn to let go of self the Holy Spirit leads to understanding.

Let us consider how express and particular the promise: ďIt shall be given him." James shows this is not a promise we can take lightly. Consider then the plight of those foolish enough to perish in their foolishness if wisdom can be had for the asking and they will not pray to God for it.

The human condition lends itself to a constant doubt. We doubt ourselves, we doubt God, we doubt His word and therefore faith comes slow and with difficulty. But, God requires that we gain the faith to know without doubt that His promises are true and faithful. As we grow in the word and give ourselves over to the Holy Spirit He teaches us how to leave our doubts behind and walk by faith.

Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Let us not forsake the honor and privilege we have today to come boldly before the throne of grace, to be able to meet with Jesus like the discipleís did. Have a question? Ask and He shall answer! Have a need? Ask and He shall provide according to His grace! How important is prayer to the believer? You are asked, no, commanded, to boldly come to the throne of God, your Creator and Savior. When Jesus shed His blood on the cross He opened the doors of heaven and only waits for you to walk boldly up to His throne and make your request known. But doesnít He already know my needs? Yes, but itís by approaching His throne in prayer and faith†that we see His hand move and learn to give Him the glory. Let us never take for granted the privilege we have each day to sit at the feet of Jesus and learn His will for our lives. It is a privilege to give Him all our cares and worries and know He will meet all of our needs.

I leave you today with a prayer that you will take hold of the great promises and privileges afforded by the sacrifice of Christ for you and take the time to boldly go to His throne today!

Solus Christus (only with Christ)

Bob Goulding © August 2006
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