Accept, Lord, the willing praise of my mouth, and teach me your laws.
18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Many people say they pray and pray but God doesn’t seem to be listening. The real problem is that it is these people who are really not listening. It is these people who don’t trust and believe in God. They have taken neither the interest nor the time to read God’s word from cover-to-cover but they want God to hear them out. They will pay through their nose for an education to secure a comfortable life for themselves but they will want a Bible to be given to them for free, and will only read it only when there is nothing left to occupy their time with. This is the priority people give God and they expect to be heard when they pray to God, when they themselves are the ones who are not listening. The Bible says, God only hears the prayers of the righteous (Prov 15:29/Ps 119:155) because these are the people who have taken the time and effort to know the Lord. These are the ones the God has called out from the world by His Sovereign Might and brought to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Ezek 36:26-29), which is Salvation in itself. Please note that we are not saved by the works of the law, we are saved by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, & conforming to God’s Law (Mat 7:21/Rom 2:13) is simply the fruit/evidence of God’s saving grace (Jam 2:17-18), we have received in Jesus Christ.
22 So also you have sorrow now, but I (Jesus) will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. 23 In that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. 24 Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.
So, what is knowing God? Well, it starts off by overcoming that hatred for righteousness and the bitterness in truth through repentance unto the Lord Jesus Christ and thereon believing in the Gospel. So, what is the Gospel? Well, it is God revealing himself in the Lord Jesus Christ to mankind, through inspired (God breathed) scripture (Gen 2:7/John 20:22/2Tim 3:16). So knowing God, is essentially God overcoming our enmity towards Him and restoring His purpose in us, which is making us share in His nature, because we were made in the image of God (Gen 1:26). An image that was broken in the fall of Adam but restored by grace through faith (Eph 2:8-10) in the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom 5:17).
It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household.
For those whom he (God-the-Father) foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
In 2Pet 3:11-12 we are taught to pray for the hastening of Jesus’ second coming, by living righteously, and Jesus isn’t going to come to a bride (Church) who isn’t ready for her groom (Rev 21:2/Jn 3:3). As much as we look to be equally yoked in marriage (2Cor 6:14), then in the light of Rom 8:29 & 2Pet 3:11-12 we see that God has decreed His called-out-ones (Ecclesia/Church) to conform to Jesus/God’s nature at the earliest. This nature is the very law of God that is written on the believer’s heart (Jer 33:31-34), which makes us a new creation in Christ… the old is gone and the new is here (2Cor 5:17)! So, as believers, we must pray as David did (Ps 119:29), asking God to “Teach Us His Law (Ps 94:12), because God’s Law is God’s very nature which God’s people are sanctified to, each passing day. His law teaches us to put God first and love our neighbour as ourselves (Mat 22:36-40).
36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And he (Jesus) said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40 On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”
Mat 6 (the blessing of putting God first in our lives)
31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
Today, what the world suffers from is lack of purpose because they have estranged themselves from God in the fall of Adam, the believer on the other hand by the redeeming power of God, finds purpose in conforming to the image of Christ. God says in 1 Sam 15:22 & 1Cor 13:3 (Rom 13:8-10) that God places obedience even over sacrifice, & God also says in John 4:24 that He is spirit & those who worship Him must do so in spirit & truth, which is precisely what the Law of God is according to Rom 7:14, 8:4 & Psalm 119:142. So, if we understand a Christian’s journey in this world as being sanctified to conform more and more to the nature of God as revealed to us in Jesus Christ, then we must understand that as we are instructed to pray according to the will of God (1John 5:14), we must therefore pray for ourselves in asking God to teach us His Law each day.