Friday after Exaudi Sunday
Posted on May 26, 2023 byunder
Scripture: St. Luke 11:5-13 (NKJV)
11:5 And He said to them, “Which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; 6 for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; 7 and he will answer from within and say, ‘Do not trouble me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give to you’? 8 I say to you, though he will not rise and give to him because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will rise and give him as many as he needs.
9 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
11 If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”
There is a false teaching advocated by some preachers known as “name it and claim it.” A favorite passage for them is today’s reading. They teach that if you just know how to “ask,” just know how to “seek,” and just know how to “knock,” God will give you what you want. “Name it and claim it.”
They fail to see what God’s Word actually teaches. Rather than “name it and claim it,” God through Holy Baptism has “named us and claimed us.” As His children, we thank Him for providing all we need in this life, knowing that “God gives daily bread indeed without our prayer, also to all the wicked; but we pray in this petition that He would lead us to know it, and to receive our daily bread with thanksgiving” (Luther’s Small Catechism, the 4th Petition of the Lord’s Prayer).
The “name it and claim it” teachers fail to see their ultimate need, and what everyone needs: the forgiveness of sins. When tempted in the wilderness, Jesus told Satan, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” What proceeds from His mouth are words of condemnation through the Law, and restoration through the Gospel. Daily we are convicted of sin by the Holy Spirit, and are taken by the same Holy Spirit to Christ and His forgiveness. Because God has “named us and claimed us” to be in Christ, we know how to pray: “Our Father who art in heaven…”
Prayer: Almighty, everlasting God, make us to have always a devout will toward Thee, and to serve Thy Majesty with a pure heart; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever One God, world without end. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.