Matthew 7:13-23 Part I

Sermon on the Mount     7:13-23
Intro
For two weeks we are going to focus on the passage that was just read.  I wish we had more like four weeks as our Lord Jesus possibly builds to the climax of the Sermon on the Mount.  I am not at all prepared to say this is the most important section of the Sermon on the Mount, but it is way up there.

This week we are going to focus on what Jesus taught.  We will focus on the details.  Next week we will focus on how what Jesus taught applies to our lives.

My goal, I have been praying it is also God’s goal, is that you will be so challenged by Jesus teaching today that you will spend every day this coming week asking, seeking, and knocking, Matthew 7:7-8, what this passage means and how does it work in my life.

Jesus has taught so much about being a true child of God through the Sermon on the Mount.  He has taught them to look within themselves to there very being.  He has taught them what their being must be.  He has also directed them to how they are to related to other people.  And most recently again He had guided them in their relationship with God.
In a way Jesus has been teaching about relationships the whole time.  I see primarily three types of relationships; with ourselves – who we truly are, with others, and with God.

Jesus is back to teaching us about ourselves.  He is teaching us more about our spiritual lives related to how God’s kingdom works.  Did you notice that Jesus is very direct in this passage?  I believe He is so direct because what He is teaching is so important.  There is one way and Jesus wants to make sure we don’t miss that way.

Verse 13    13“Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it.

Jesus begins with a command, not a suggestion.  We do not get to choose where each gate leads or opens into.  If we could choose how the gates worked and which one leads to where, we would be God.

We must enter through the narrow gate.  This gate is not some common gate to a field or a garden, it is emphasis on the main gate or main entrance to a guarded city.  Jesus is teaching there is only one entrance or way to eternal life, to a spiritual life.

In general we people seek the entrance of least difficulty, the one that seems most logical to nearly everyone.  Jesus is making it clear the way of a disciple, of a child of God, is to only following Him.  John 14:6 “I am the way”, He said.  And the word road in verse 13 is the same word as in John 14:6.

Jesus is the only way to a relationship with God.  The word destruction is based on the word to be “cut-off or severed”.  So the many who enter or go through the wide gate and the broad road go to eternal separation from God.  The narrow gate alone leads to eternity with God.

Verse 14    14BUT (How) narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it.

Narrow in these two verses literally means small or not wide.  But difficult has deeper meaning.  This is actually a verb.  So Jesus is teaching about what it will be like to travel this road.  He is not saying you must have difficulty on this road, that we must work hard or something like that, but He is saying it is a difficult road to travel and few find it.  Literally the verb means it is a pressing, constrictive road that is not easy.  The easy road is the wide road that many take.

Jesus just taught in verses 7-8 7“Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 8For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

Why do few find the narrow gate and the difficult road?  Because they do not ask God, seek, or knock.  Jesus said everyone who searches finds in verse 8.

Contrary to the world’s understanding, God has not made it complicated to enter the narrow gate.  But He does teach there is only one way to enter – His way!

Verse 15    15“Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves.
Another person was clothed in the Bible, but not in sheep skins.  The same word for clothing is garment as in Matthew 3:4, John the Baptiser had a camel-hair garment.

Beware is another command from Jesus.  In other words we must be on high alert and expecting false prophets.  They seem so innocent on the outside, but inside they have intentions to literally snatch you up.  Ravaging is the robber who takes from you.  Paul used the same word about some people in the church in 1 Corinthians 5:11But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler—not even to eat with such a one.

False prophets make bold claims that seem so right.  Matthew 24: 4Then Jesus replied to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and they will deceive many.  They know what to say and how to say what makes sense.  But in the end they only want to mislead people as they have been misled.  These aren’t satan worshippers or atheists who share their true beliefs openly.  These are deceivers who have been deceived themselves by the evil one who pretends to be an angel of light, 2 Corinthians 11:14.

Verse 16    16You’ll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thorn bushes or figs from thistles?

Jesus is saying you will see them for what they are, you will know their true motives by testing what they teach.  Recognize or know is not only in your mind, but it is more what you know by relationship through experience.

Remember these are people who look good on the outside only.  So we must look or search deeper to test if they are false or not.  And the “proof in the pudding” is not what they say, but what they truly believe that ends in their true actions.  James 2 is a great example – faith by statement verses faith that leads to Godly actions.  Jesus taught this in Matthew 23:27“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which appear beautiful on the outside, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and every impurity. 28In the same way, on the outside you seem righteous to people, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.

If what they say does not match what they do, something is truly wrong.

Verse 17    17In the same way, every good(a) tree produces good(b) fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit.
Verse 18    18A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit.
Verse 19    19Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

I did a little research on trees.  Apparently, good fruit and nut trees produce good fruit and nuts.  But sick and untended trees produce little fruit that often doesn’t even look good.

Verse 17-19 there are two different kinds of good.  The good tree Jesus taught is good from the inside out that leads to good fruit.  But the good fruit good is an emphasis on how the fruit looks as well as what is inside.

Verse 20    20So you’ll recognize them by their fruit.

I believe Jesus is comparing people that are bad inside verses those that are good.  And the bad ones might look good on the outside, but they can’t hide what they produce.  Because what all of us “produce”; what we do, what we say, how we live, what we truly believe, etc.  comes from who we really are.  Matthew 15:18

If we follow Jesus and enter through the narrow gate and take the difficult road then we are made good by God’s grace – Jesus Himself as our Savior.

But if we go any other way or think we can go through any other gate – we will be cut off from God forever.  And we might even think we are good, but we are not truly good and our lives will prove it.  This week I challenge you to examine yourself honestly before the Lord, 2 Corinthians 13:5 Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith. Examine yourselves. Or do you yourselves not recognize that Jesus Christ is in you?–unless you fail the test.

Verse 21    21“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord! ’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of My Father in heaven.

Jesus taught in 7:8For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.    The word everyone is the same word in verse 8 and verse 21.  Is Jesus contradicting Himself?  No way.

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord        Everyone of the people who call Jesus Lord think they are His followers, think they are Christians or they are outright liars.  By calling Jesus Lord it is to be a declaration of ownership.  A servant or slave calls the person who owns them their lord.  But we can say just about anything we want to say, it doesn’t make it true unless it is true.

Is it enough to think we are followers of Jesus when we call Him Lord?  Jesus is teaching our words are not enough.  Please don’t take this idea lightly.  Jesus is teaching the disciples and the crowds on that hillside, not every one who think they are going to heaven, is truly going to heaven.

This is not Jesus accusing anyone.  He is not condemning anyone.  I don’t believe He wants this statement to be true, but it is true.  In John 3:16For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

When Jesus taught that “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord    I believe Jesus was directing this statement to everyone individually.  Therefore He is directing this statement to me as well.  And His goal is to teach me, you and everyone how to enter the narrow gate and go the difficult road.  He is teaching how to truly declare Jesus is my Lord and it be true, not just words.

Do I think I am going to heaven?  Am I truly going there?  I am confident the answer is yes because I believe in the name of God’s one and only Son.  I have choosen the narrow gate and the difficult road.  But I believe I have more evidence than only my words that this is true.  More on this next week.

Are you asking this of yourself yet?  Do you think you are going to heaven?  Are you confident you going there?  God has done everything, but force you to be able to say with confidence – YES!!!

The key, I believe, is when our statement of faith and beliefs is the same as our produce – our fruit.  The fruit must be the will of My Father in heaven.

Verse 22    22On that day many will say to Me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in Your name, drive out demons in Your name, and do many miracles in Your name? ’

So which day is “that day”.  I believe it is the day of judgement when Jesus returns (Matthew 24:29-31, 25:31-46).  The people Jesus described did “good” things.  They did amazing things in Jesus name, but somehow they weren’t the will of My Father in heaven, they weren’t God’s will.

Is my goal going to be reached for this message?  Do you feel compelled, that you want and even need to study this for yourself this week?  Or will we end soon and your heart not be moved to action?  I don’t know what that action must be, but I hope a part is to keep asking, keep seeking, keep knocking.

Verse 23    23Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you! Depart from Me, you lawbreakers!’

Jesus taught on the judgement day He will declare publicly – He will announce.  ‘I never knew you

Never means never.  Knew is the past tense of know by experience with the person.  It is knowing someone well enough to call them friend.  Jesus is saying we never really met.

Depart is a command from Jesus meaning literally – go away.  And He says go away, not because He wants to say so, but because He must.  He must because the person was literally – working lawlessness so they are a law breaker.  The word lawless can also be translated disobedient or sinful depending on the context.

Does Jesus know you?  I believe this is the vital condition upon which all of the Sermon on the Mount is based.

Application
Next week we will dig more into the application of how this all work in our lives.

My primary goal has been to proclaim the Word of God according to God’s will.  My secondary goal today has been that you have so many questions now, that you are so hungry for the answers, that you can’t wait until next Sunday.  And you don’t have to wait.  I don’t believe waiting is even an option.  Waiting would mean you are not asking, not seeking, and not knocking yourself.  Did Jesus teach the disciples to wait for anything before they started asking, seeking, and knocking?

There are two parables I encourage you to study this week along with asking, seeking, and knocking.  The first is the parable of the wedding banquet in Matthew 22:1-14.  The second is the parable of the 10 virgins in Matthew 25:1-13.  I hope also you will not stop with just these parables this week.  If you will study these parables this week I believe you will see why I strongly suggest them.

Does Jesus know you?  I believe He wants to know you, as does His Father.  1 Timothy 2: 3This is good, and it pleases God our Savior, 4who wants everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Does Jesus know you?  If you have placed your faith in Jesus, have chosen to follow Him, then the answer is a confident YES.  If this is true then you are on the difficult path and have gone through the narrow gate.  If this is true then the product, the fruit, of your life will be good, will be God’s will.

Is your fruit good?  What is the good fruit of doing God’s will?  Jesus said in verse 21 that only if we are doing God’s will are we on the difficult path to the kingdom of heaven.  What is God’s will?  My challenge to you this week is to keep asking God what is His will.  My challenge is to keep seeking God’s will this week.  My challenge is to keep knocking.

Pray continually Paul taught in 1 Thessalonians 5:17.  Prayer is asking, and praying continually is a big part of keep asking.

Opening the Bible is one way to seek, and opening the Bible and searching it regularly is a big part of keep seeking.

Jeremiah 29:13 says You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.

Seek the Lord with all of your heart this week.  If by next Sunday you realize you have done little or no seeking, something is wrong with your heart.

Pray

Matthew 7:7-12

Sermon on the Mount     7:7-12                Luke 11:5-12

7“Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 8For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. 9What man among you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! 12Therefore, whatever you want others to do for you, do also the same for them — this is the Law and the Prophets.

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Prayer

Intro
Jesus makes a bit of a focus change in verses 7-11.  Jesus focus last week was on how we are to deal with other people, and verse 12 we get back to that focus.  Verses 7-11 turn our focus on our relationship with our Heavenly Father.  And from a proper relationship with God, Jesus teaches us how we are do deal with other people.

Jesus is teaching us one more way we are to become more like Him, to be His disciples who lead others to be His disciples.

Jesus taught the crowds and the disciples to:

Verse 7    7“Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you.

Persistence is a Godly trait.  Jesus teaches this on many occasions, I will give one in a moment.

But I read a great quote one day that helped me with the idea of perseverance.  The legendary American Football coach Chuck Noll said “stubbornness is only a virtue if you’re right”.  If we keep asking for the wrong things from the wrong people, if we keep searching for the wrong things in the wrong way, if we keep knocking on the wrong door – we are just wrong.  Coach Noll said “When you’re wrong, it’s just another character flaw”.

Persistence in the wrong things is just virtueless stubbornness.

So according to Jesus does it maters what we keep asking for, searching for and on which door we keep knocking.

Please read verses 7-12 to yourself and find out what you are to be asking.  Read what you are to be seeking.  Find out what it means to knock.

So, what did Jesus tell us to ask for in these verses?  Please give me His list of specifics?  What are we to seek?  And what door?  Jesus didn’t give us a list did He?  I guess we can ask for anything?  I would like a million dollars, a supercar, and all the fuel I will ever need.

God is just a cosmic Santa Clause?  Is that what Jesus is teaching?  I sure don’t think so.  But I do believe an acceptable question for God is to learn what to keep asking, what to keep seeking, and how to keep knocking.

By the way ask, seek, and knock are all commands from Jesus.  These are actions we must not only choose to do, but we must do.  And these are not one time actions, they are to be done on a regular basis, as if they are a habit or tradition.

Keep asking can also be translate as request, petition, beg, call for, or crave.  There is another word that is also translated ask that is more like inquiring or asking to understand.  This ask is much stronger.  This  is more like asking for things we truly need or desire greatly or deeply.

Keep searching is the same original word as in Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.”    This word can also be translated seek, desire, require or demand.  It is based on the idea of looking for something with the need to get to the bottom of the matter.  It is a relentless, never giving up, kind of searching.

Keep knocking is not based on a timid attitude, but more aggressive as if there is a sense of urgency or necessity.  As if we are knocking so hard that we might knock down the door.

Keep asking, seeking, and knocking seems to be like the widow who pestered the judge in Luke 18:1-8.  The widow never gave up seeking justice.  Here is how Jesus ended the parable.   7Will not God grant justice to His elect who cry out to Him day and night? Will He delay to help them? 8I tell you that He will swiftly grant them justice. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He find that faith on earth? ”

Jesus taught in this parable that persistence is related to faith.  Do you, do I, believe God not only hears us when we ask, but also will give what we ask for?  Do we believe when we keep searching we will find?  Do we believe God is even there to answer the door if we urgently keep knocking?

I believe Jesus left a challenge at the end of that parable.  when the Son of Man comes, will He find that faith on earth? ”    If He came back right now, what would He find if He walked up to you?

Verse 8    8For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

Take this verse out of context of the Sermon on the Mount and the rest of the Bible and it would lead you to a dangerous understanding of God and our relationship with Him.  It would make God the perfect “Santa Clause”.  Our expectation could be like in Star Trek and the replicators.  Just ask for anything and it just appears right before your eyes.

I hope you realize that if you ask for a Lamborghini or for a perfect husband, you might not get what you asked for.  We could spend all day unpacking how and for what to ask, search, and knock.  But I think the best answer Jesus already told us in Matthew 6: 8Don’t be like them, because your Father knows the things you need before you ask Him.

I have a list of nearly 20 additional verse for context to asking, I will be sending all of them in the eBlast.  James, Jesus half brother, gave this insight into asking that Jesus probably taught him.  James 4:1-3 1What is the source of wars and fights among you? Don’t they come from the cravings that are at war within you? 2You desire and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. You do not have because you do not ask. 3You ask and don’t receive because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your evil desires.

Verse 9    9What man among you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone?
Verse 10    10Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?
Verse 11    11If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

Jesus gets very practical with His illustration, but the message may have been more powerful than we grasp at first glance.  For example; there are two kinds of give in these three verses.  9-10 are different than the two times in 11.  Honestly, I don’t believe I understand well the difference.  But the word give in verse 11 is the same as in verse 7.  It means to give as to place something in front of them.  Verses 9-10 it is to give over, as from one person to another, what I have to give I give.

Theologians agree that the type of giving God does in verses 7 & 11 is spiritual in nature.  But in verse 11 Jesus taught we also, though we are evil or sinful by nature, can also give similarly as God.  The word know in verse 11 is the key.  This know is based on the idea of understanding or perceiving well.  It is knowing what someone really needs and not just what they want.

Good parents truly understand not only what their children want, but also give with wisdom to fulfill their need.  I hope you had a good example of this from your parent, but I realize this may not be true for you.

If your child wants to eat only candy when they are hungry, a good parent does not always give them candy.  The child is hungry, and a good parent will give them something to eat.  But the good parent also knows candy is not that good for them.  The good parent finds good alternatives such as meat, vegetables, and fruit.

God is the perfect parent.  He knows that we need things and He knows exactly what we truly need.  So one thing we don’t need is to worry, Matthew 6:25-34.

God’s giving includes the Holy Spirit, wisdom, knowledge, direction to make us more like Jesus, to grow as His disciples.  God knows our need for salvation.  He also knows what we need to grow into mature disciples of Jesus.  He knows everything.

The bottom line may be if we trust God and are willing to receive what He wants to give us – good things?  Do we think we know better than He does what good things we need, want, or deserve?

But it we don’t ask, and keep asking we won’t receive anything.  If we don’t keep searching we won’t find.  And if we don’t knock then the door will not be opened.

Verse 12    12Therefore, whatever you want others to do(a) for you, do(b) also the same for them — this is the Law and the Prophets.

You may recognize this as the “Golden Rule”.  Wow, it seems like Jesus made a big change in thought, but He didn’t.  Therefore is always indicating that the previous information leads to the next statement or thought.  Lets see how they connect.

First we need to highlight a few words.  The word everything or whatever, is the word all.  It is meaning all as in a completed set of individual parts.  So Jesus is saying don’t leave anything conveniently out of your list for your own benefit.

Then the word want.  The word is normally used in the context of what God wants for His children.  This want is for what is best.

And then we need to talk about the word do.  It means to do as in to make, manufacture, or construct both times in this verse.  It is a literal action.  But the first do is based on what the person SHOULD do, not necessarily what they will do.  The second do is a command.  You and I are commanded to do and act as we want others to do and act with us.  But what the other person chooses is their own business.

We have seen the phrase “the law and the prophets” before, Matthew 5:17    “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.    Jesus will teach about this phrase even more in Matthew 22:40    All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”    You may remember 34When the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they came together. 35And one of them, an expert in the law, asked a question to test Him: 36“Teacher, which command in the law is the greatest? ” 37He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. 38This is the greatest and most important command. 39The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. 40All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.”

Last week we learned not to judge others and to take the log out of our own eye first.  I believe Jesus is making this same point again.

12Therefore, whatever you want others to do(a) for you, do(b) also the same for them — this is the Law and the Prophets.

Jesus is teaching us how to have a perspective on relationships like He has.  And one of the ways we will learn this is by being others focused through examining ourselves.  How do we want others to treat us, what do we want others to do for us?  Do we want them to be angry with us, to hit us, to laugh at us, or to judge us?   No, we want them to be kind, thoughtful, patient, helpful, respectful, generous.  We want them to have the “Fruit of the Spirit”, Galatians 5:22-23, when they deal with us.

But how do we treat others?  Think back to last week?  Do we have a double-standard?  Do we expect others to be better to us than we are better to them?

Here is how the first part ties into verse 12.  I believe Jesus taught verses 7-11 are the way that we receive what we need to treat others like Jesus would treat them?  We keep asking for what we need and don’t have.  So if we keep asking, for example, we will keep being filled with God’s power through the Holy Spirit.  We keep seeking, for example, God’s perfect will for our lives each day.  And we keep knocking.

Application
I believe I can summarize what Jesus is teaching in two words – keep praying!  I realize this not the full answer, but keep praying.

If we will ask God, and keep asking in prayer God will answer and give us what we need, what is good.  This is easy to say and not as easy to do.  Asking God and leaving the answers to Him requires many things.  It requires giving God our wants and wishes to receive His will.  It requires trusting Him for not only the results, but when they will happen.

We must keep seeking.  He taught in Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.”  Jesus didn’t say seek only these things.  But I wonder if we really seek, and keep seeking, first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, is there anything else worth seeking?  These two aims or goals seem specific at first glance to me, but they incorporate all that is our spiritual lives.  Therefore I believe Jesus is teaching us to desperately and urgently seek these things for the rest of our lives on earth.

And to keep knocking?  Maybe Jesus was teaching the basic process of starting with curiosity.  Jesus told the disciples in Matthew 18: 3“I assure you,” He said, “unless you are converted and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Maybe a part of what Jesus was telling them is their need to ask lots of questions and seek lots of things, just like children.  Are we curious enough about spiritual things to ask God about them, to seek them as if our lives depended on learning about the ultimate aims and goals?  And when the seeking leads to a door, are we curious enough and do we trust our Heavenly Father enough to knock on the door?

I don’t know much yet about these things, I have so much to learn.  But I believe I do know how to keep asking, keep seeking, and how to learn how to keep knocking.

It starts with a personal relationship with God though Jesus.  If you know you do not have a relationship with Him, but you want to learn more, please come to me at the end of the service.

I believe I also know that it includes lots and lots of:
Personal Prayer
Personal Bible Study
Learning with and from other disciples of Jesus
Biblical Materials: books, podcasts, study materials, commentaries, etc.

So are you an asker of God?  Are you a seeker of the kingdom of God and His righteousness.  Are you knocking at the door He leads you to?  If not, then you can start today.  Start with asking God what He is leading you to do?  If you are an asker, seeker, and knocker.  In what was is He challenging you to keep asking, keep seeking, and keep knocking.

Are you receiving from our Heavenly Father, are you finding, is the door being opened?  If so, you will be learning more regularly how to live the Golden Rule, verse 12.  But if you are not asking, seeking and knocking according to God’s will and His way, then you can not be obeying the Golden Rule.

I encourage each of us to spend a few moments in prayer asking, seeking and knocking as the Lord leads each of us.  Please feel free to come and see me if you want someone to join you in this process.

Cross References
Mark 11:24    Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
Luke 11:9    “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
John 14:13    And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
John 15:7    If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.
John 15:16    You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit–fruit that will last–and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.
John 16:23-24    In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.    (different kind of ask)
James 1:5    If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
1 John 3:22    and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him.
1 John 5:14    This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.