Friday, February 2, 2018

"The Benefactor" Part 3

"The Benefactor"

Part 3

    One of the reasons our great and glorious Heavenly Benefactor must fulfill our requests according to His wisdom and knowledge involves a most fascinating aspect of prayer.

    "God… worketh all things after the counsel of His own will" (Ephesians 1:3; 11).

    How skillfully must our Heavenly Father's coordination execute the answer to merely one prayer?  The answer is perfectly.  Indeed, consider that of the billions upon billions of requests God has fulfilled in response to human supplications, each must coordinate perfectly with all others.  This involves not merely present Divine activity, but also every prayer answered throughout human history.  All must fit into God's "eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Ephesians 3:11).  There can be no loose thread or rogue response.  God's answers for Joe must correlate with His answers for George like the most perfectly fitting glove.  "As for God, His way is perfect" declared David (II Samuel 22:31).  This includes everything our Lord does, including and especially His role as the Benefactor who calls us to make our requests, but who must answer in a manner that does not violate His nature, integrity, and purpose.  "He is the Rock; His work is perfect.  For all His ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is He" (Deuteronomy 32:4).

    To illustrate, suppose we make a request for George that seems proper, beneficial, and even to our understanding, Biblical.  If, however, answering our plea would conflict to any degree whatsoever with His working in the heart and life of Joe, God cannot answer the prayer as we prayed it.  He may rather look upon the heart of our intercession and answer according to our motivation rather than the mode of our request.  But He will not and cannot act in any manner whatsoever that fails to fulfill His perfect synthesis  of everything He has done, is doing, and will do.  Answers for George must perfectly align with answers for Joe.  Perfectly.  Little wonder that the Apostle Paul fell to His face in wonder as He pondered such Divine coordination: "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!  How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!  For who hath known the mind of the Lord?  Or who hath been His counselor?   Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto Him again?  For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory forever. Amen" (Romans 11:33-36).

    If our view of prayer tends toward the trite or trivial, the truth we consider provides the cure for such silliness.  Or if we tend to be wordy in our prayers, as if our "much speaking" informs our Lord of what and how He needs to act, realizing the holy synthesis of His actions will lead us to our knees and faces (Matthew 6:7).  Again, every prayer God answers, or has answered, or will answer, must perfectly coordinate in the scope and context of His eternal purpose.  The thought should overwhelm us to the degree we throw up our hands and even our hearts in frustration.  How can we begin to pray rightly in the blinding Light of such perfection?  We cannot, of course, apart from the same Light that gives sight to the blind.  We trust the Lord to lead and enable us in our prayers.  "Teach us to pray" asked the disciples of the Lord Jesus (Luke 11:1).  No wiser request has ever been uttered in human history.  The same petition must be often heard in our personal history.  We have no hope regarding prayer otherwise.  Through Christ, however, and by the leadership of the Holy Spirit, we can be confident that our Benefactor promises to not only answer us, but also increasingly teach us how to ask.  The perfect synthesis of His fulfillment of our requests necessitates such awe and such expectation, even as the Psalmist prayed...

"O send out Thy light and Thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto Thy holy hill, and to Thy tabernacles."
 (Psalm 43:3).

Weekly Memory Verse
   See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
(Ephesians 5:15-16)



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