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Prayer is the means by which we can obtain a greater measure of the influences of God's Spirit, and thereby grow in all the fruits He produces.

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  #37. Prayer is the means by which we can obtain a greater measure of theinfluences of God's Spirit, and thereby grow in all the fruits He produces.   Luke 11:13  “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how muchmore will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” Jesus has been teaching His hearers about prayer. He first gives them the pattern for their dailyprayer, then teaches them about the need to be persistent in their praying. Finally, He draws alesson from family life - pointing out that even earthly fathers would never give their childrenharmful things when they have asked for their daily bread - the food they need to live on. If thatis true of evil men, how could it be supposed that God would deny His children what they needfor spiritual life and power (the Holy Spirit) if they ask Him?The Holy Spirit supplies all that we need to live for Christ. He is the grace and the power behindall our spiritual desires and actions, the One Who conforms us to the image of the Lord JesusChrist, making us holy as He is holy. Without Him, we can do nothing, but we can do all thingsby His enabling. How, then, shall the people of God gain a greater measure of the preciousinfluences of the Spirit? How shall they obtain what they need for spiritual life and health? Theanswer is not complex. There is no great feat we must perform, no rite to be observed, nointellectual, financial or societal standing to be achieved. To put it in simple terms, the HolySpirit of God, third Person of the Godhead, is ours for the asking because of the work of Christ!This teaching is both simple and profound. Here is what Matthew Henry has to say on thispassage: Observe:   (1.) The direction he gives us what to pray for. We must ask for the Holy Spirit, not only anecessary in order to our praying well, but as inclusive of all the good things we are to pray for;we need no more to make us happy, for the Spirit is the worker of spiritual life, and the earnest of eternal life. Note, The gift of the Holy Ghost is a gift we are every one of us concerned earnestlyand constantly to pray for.   (2.) The encouragement he gives us to hope that we shall speed in this prayer: Your heavenlyFather will give. It is in his power to give the Spirit; he has all good things to bestow, wrapped up in that one; but that is not all, it is in his promise, the gift of the Holy Ghost is in the covenant, Acts 2:33 ,38 , and it is here inferred from parents’ readiness to supply their children’s needs, and gratify their desires, when they are natural and proper. If the child ask for a serpent, or ascorpion, the father, in kindness, will deny him, but not if he ask for what is needful, and will benourishing. When God’s children ask for the Spirit, they do, in effect, ask for bread; for the Spirit is the staff of life; nay, he is the Author of the soul’s life. If our earthly parents, though evil, be yet so kind, if they, though weak, be yet so knowing, that they not only give, but give withdiscretion, give what is best, in the best manner and time, much more will our heavenly Father,who infinitely excels the fathers of our flesh both in wisdom and goodness, give us his HolySpirit. If earthly parents be willing to lay out for the education of their children, to whom theydesign to leave their estates, much more will our heavenly Father give the spirit of sons to allthose whom he has predestinated to the inheritance of sons.    We are going to go on in the next few Reasons to underline the teaching of Scripture that allthe fruits and blessings of the Spirit come to us through prayer. How could it be otherwise, whenthe Spirit Himself is granted to us on this basis?So this coming week, let's be much in prayer for God to grant us His Spirit in greater and greaterfullness, and all the blessings and benefits that attend His presence in the believer's life! 
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