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The Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus and tested him by asking him to show them a sign from heaven. He replied, “When evening comes, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red,’ and in the morning, ‘Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah.” Jesus then left them and went away. Matthew 16:1-4 NIV
Back in Matthew 12 we had read about the leaders asking Jesus for a sign. In both cases He refers to them as an adulterous generation. And in both cases, He stated the only sign they would receive was the sign of Jonah.
Do we ever mask our requests of Jesus as demands, with comments such as “If you love me, you will do this for me.” Or “Prove yourself by doing this for me”? Actually, Jesus is not obliged to fulfill any of our requests. He does so out of love for us, and that the Father and the Son might be glorified in so doing.
We must put faith and trust in the Lord. If a request we make is not fulfilled, it has nothing to do with the love of Christ for us. We do not know all that Christ knows. What we ask for may not be beneficial for us and for the advancement of God’s kingdom. We must obey, and follow in Christ’s footsteps. He will provide that which we need.
We can, and should go to the Lord with requests, but never make it appear as asking for a sign. Put not the Lord to the test.
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