Friday, November 2, 2007

The Table of God’s Willingness

When He had come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him. And behold, a leper came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” Then Jesus put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed. (Matthew 8:1-3)
Some people think that prayer is about trying to get God to do something that He has been unwilling to do. But as one man of God said many years ago, prayer is not about overcoming God’s unwillingness; it is about laying hold of His willingness.

The leper who came to Jesus had no doubt that Jesus was able to heal him, if only He was willing. Though he had faith, he just did not know what the will of God was concerning his healing. So he asked. Now, this was the only time anybody had ever asked Jesus if it was His will to heal—and the answer was Yes! What joy it must have been for this leper to realize that he had just laid hold of God’s willingness. And immediately he was cleansed.

Prayer that gets results is prayer that lays hold of God’s willingness. The apostle John put it this way.
Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, 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 the petitions that we have asked of Him. (1 John 5:14-15)
It is the will of God to give us every good thing. The Bible says that “no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly” (Psalm 84:11). Every good gift comes from God (James 1:17) and He is unwilling to hold any of it back from us. Why? Because of Jesus. Paul said “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32).

When we take of the Table of the Lord, we see that God did not withhold His only Son from us, but gave Him freely that we might know His salvation. The bread and the cup demonstrate that God has not withheld any good thing from us, but that He is more than willing to give it all to us. See His willingness, we can pray with God confidence, knowing that we will receive the good that we ask.

The Table of the Lord is The Table of God’s Willingness.