How I Used Truth - Lesson 3 - Annotation 7
What did Jesus mean by the statement: "Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be made full" (John 16:24)?
7. We believe that Jesus was referring to a type of "asking" that had not been done from the Christ or I AM nature. Jesus knew that "hitherto" the disciples had asked of the Father in limited understanding because they were unaware of their divinity, their true "name" or nature, Jesus is pointing out here that to ask in the same nature from which He asked, the divine or I AM nature, would assure fulfillment.
If we pray or ask for healing in an unenlightened state of consciousness that admits of doubts and anxieties, then we are not asking "in His name." When we ask or pray for any type of good in the understanding of ourselves as sons of God, spiritual beings, then Jesus is saying to each one of us "ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be made full."
We believe that when Jesus says ye shall receive" He is not referring to something that may happen in the future but to an assured fulfillment. In this verse of Scripture Jesus is stating the law of supply and demand. Our asking is the demand for that which our faith tells us is already established for us. However, we may make the demand with a sense of uncertainty that it will be met. When we speak from this level of consciousness it is as though our mind is not entirely open, but is blocked by doubt and fear. The Annotations for Lesson Eight of Lessons in Truth deal with the vital part that "asking" plays in making a demonstration.
"His name stands for spiritual man (Christ), and to ask in the realization of the indwelling Christ is to open our consciousness as to the infinite good that is resident in Spirit. Persons have asked in His name in a literal sense and have not received. Prayer must be substantiated by spiritual realization if we are to have the fulfillment of the promise" (Your Hope of Glory 232).
Even in our everyday life, we become quite familiar with the results of our asking. If we ask in a selfish or petulant way, we are much less likely to receive what we desire. If we ask in a fearful or negative way, even of one close to us, we set up a mental block within our own mind that somehow has its effect upon the other person. On the other hand, if we ask in a confident, loving, understanding way, we open the channel in our own life to receive. This sense of co-operation is felt by the other person, who is more than willing to give what he can. Just as the manner in which we ask for something in the outer has its effect upon our receiving, so our manner of asking of God will affect the time and quantity of our supply. God is not swayed by our emotions, but being the Fountain-head of all good He is continually radiating His good to all creation. So our part is to ask, or make the demand. A familiar hymn voices it this way:
All is yours just for the asking!
Ere you send your silent plea
Heaven unlocks her richest treasure
For your waiting eyes to see.
How we ask (i.e., the manner or attitude of our asking) will determine the results in our life. If we have, as Jesus said to His disciples, "asked nothing in [His] name," we have not asked in the right way. We have made our demand from limited human understanding rather than from the spiritual understanding which knows that our asking must be from the Christ or I AM nature in us. When we raise our consciousness to this divine nature, we will ask "in His name" and the results will be deeply satisfying.
Preceding Entry: How do we ask "in His name"?
Following Entry: How can we tell whether or not we are using His name righteously?