Monday, May 12, 2014

"DANGER WILL ROBINSON, DANGER!!!"

In the same way that the robot of Lost In Space warned Will of impending danger, so I take this opportunity to do the same with my brothers and sisters in Christ. 

The Name It and Claim It doctrine or movement or whatever you desire to call it is not Scriptural. 

If you are a parent, do you give your child everything he/she names or claims that would seemingly be impossible to live without? Remember back to when you were a child - did you receive everything you named and claimed that you thought was vital to continuing with your life? The answer is a loud, resounding - No! Nobody has ever received everything they wanted, from this world, otherwise we would be told how to master the desire or disease of want

Similarly, God does not always award the Christian whatever is named or claimed. Many people quote the James 4:2 - "You do not have, because you do not ask God." - as a means to justify their Name It and Claim It mentality. However, people lift verses like that, taking them out of context and especially disregard the very next verse - "When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures." (James 4:3)

The way to turn-off the alarm button that I have activated hinges on how you respond to James 4:3. Allow me to paraphrase the verse - Whenever you do get around to asking God, you are still not going to receive because God knows whatever you receive, you squander on your own pleasures, which is the wrong motive for asking in the first place.

The rest of James 4:4-12 deals with Association and Attitude. Having a correct and healthy association with God instead of the world grants the Believer a wonderful foundation from which to approach God and ask. Hand-in-hand with the appropriate association with God is a correct and healthy attitude - submissiveness to God (v.7), closeness to God (v.8), cleanliness, purity, and focus before God (v.8), grieve about what saddens God's heart (v.9), humbleness before God (v.10), and an attitude of non-judgmental speech (v.11).

So, all of James 4 could be summed up, in my eyes, as saying - You could have the desires of your heart IF you ask the right person first - God, in the right manner, with what is on God's heart concerning your request. Again, the two "A's" are key - associating with the right person and offering the proper attitude.

Another verse that supports this is Matthew 6:33, Jesus encourages us with what to do in the first things - 
  • But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. - Matthew 6:33
IF (Huge IF here) God's kingdom and God's righteousness are the first things we seek in our asking.....observe....."all these things will be given to you as well."

Whatever Scripture states that Christ has paid for, then that is what we can ASK for from Him. Jesus is the one that paid the price for whatever advantage or blessing that may come our way, now it is up to us to trust in His plan and timing of His plan for that blessing by ASKING and SEEKING Him, not naming and claiming.

Some may use John 14:14 as an example of a verse supporting the fact that you can name it and claim it.

  • "You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it."
I see three errors with this.

  1. Notice the verse says we have to "ASK" God for "anything". There is no naming or claiming.
  2. Jesus is always going to glorify God The Father. The prior verse (v.13) speaks to Jesus granting any request "so that" the Father will receive Glory through the Son. If Glory is not going to be delivered to Father God, then the request will not be granted. 
  3. Surely you have tested these waters and know there is more to this statement than meets the eye. There have been blessings I have thought God would have desired me to have and asked Him for, but did not receive. So there has got to be more to this statement.
The Christian is often times associated with a soldier on a battlefield. Soldiers have all kinds of rank from Private to General. Each soldier has different responsibilities as well as different levels of authority. The General is the top dawg, so it would follow that all other soldiers, no matter their rank, would still have to follow the General's Master Plan while authorized and executing their piece of the many-faceted, complex war puzzle. This would mean that while desiring to name and claim a territory on behalf of the General, the subordinates must still ASK the General and/or inquire of His Master Plan. It could be that this is not the time, place, or resources that the General desires to use or it might be - but He must be consulted first.

In the same light, just because we are seated together in heavenly places with Christ Jesus does not give us permission to go shooting off spiritual guns or applying our position to material things all the time. Just because you are a son/daughter of The Most High God doesn't mean that you name and claim a new house, car, job, etc... Just because you are a child of God does not mean an attitude of gratitude, humility, and PETITION go out the door!
So, do as Philippians 4:6 says, Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Remember what Christ taught about worrying - Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? - Matthew 6:27 But ASK, require of the Lord with the right motives - seek His kingdom and His righteousness. Don't simply name it and claim it. You might think something is best for you at this time in your life, BUT Father Knows Best - Inquire of The Lord Always!