By Stan Brown
I John 3:22 and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight.
We have not entered God’s candy shop where all our desires are immediately met. We have entered the presence of God where we may converse with Him one on one. We have reached the place where our desires are in tune with who He is. We have reached the place where we trust in His timing. Perhaps we even begin to understand that He exists outside of time as he intervenes in time. David expresses it this way. Psa. 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart. John writes whatever we ask we receive from Him. This is not an easy place to abide else John would not have spent so much time getting here.
How then do we get to this point? Everything John has said before leads up to this. I hesitate to go over it again since, in some fashion or another, I have mentioned it every day but it is so essential that I once more briefly summarize. As we walk in the light which reveals our sins, we confess those sins and fellowship together with the Father and the Son. We gain victory over the deceits of the devil. We love one another. And whatever we ask we receive from Him. (OK, brief interlude here. Yes, John writes in the extremes of light and dark and we never reach perfection in this life but John encourages us to take the road that leads there. Interlude ends.) Let us strife, with the power of the presence of the Holy Spirit to walk where He walks every moment.
This verse also looks forward to what John will soon more fully explain. The result of our confidence toward God is answered prayer. John summarizes the reasons as he writes because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight. He says that we may come confidently before God in prayer as we (1) keep His commandments and (2) do the things that are pleasing in His sight. This is really one reason observed from two perspectives. God is pleased when we follow Him and obey His commandments. As we walk where Jesus walks, we desire what He desires. It is exciting to know that in His great love, He desires what is best for us and those we love.
The reward is twofold as we do what John says. First, we have mutual fellowship with the master of the universe and beyond. Second, whatever we ask we receive from Him. This is much the same as the words of Jesus that John records in his Gospel. “If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it (John 14:14). This statement is immediately followed with a statement about commandments and love. “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments (John 14:15). Let us walk in the light each moment of every day.