Matthew 7:8

For every one that asks receives; and he that seeks finds; and to him that knocks it shall be opened.
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Augustine of Hippo

AD 430
Moreover, great hope has been given, and is given, by Him who does not deceive when He promises. Hence there is need of perseverance, in order that we may receive what we ask, and find what we seek, and that what we knock at may be opened. Now, just as He talked of the fowls of heaven and of the lilies of the field, that we might not despair of food and clothing being provided for us, so that our hopes might rise from lesser things to greater; so also in this passage, Or what man is there of you, says He, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask Him? How do the evil give good things? Now, He has called those evil who are as yet the lovers of this world and sinners. And, in fact, the good things are to be called good according to their feeling, because they reckon these ...

Augustine of Hippo

AD 430
Otherwise; when He commanded not to give the holy thing to dogs, and not to cast pearls before swine, the hearer conscious of his own ignorance might say, Why do you thus bid me not give the holy thing to dogs, when as yet I see not thatI have any holy thing He therefore adds in good season, “Ask, an dye shall receive.”. Serm. in Mont., ii, 21: Asking, is that we may get healthiness of soul that we may be able to fulfil the things commanded us; seeking, pertains to the discovery of the truth. But when any has found the true way, he will then come into actual possession, which however is only opened to him that knocks. Retract., i, 19: How these three differ from one another, I have thought good to unfold with this travail; but it were better to refer them all to instant prayer; wherefore He afterwards concludes, saying, “He will give good things to the m that ask him.”. Tract. in Joan. 44, 13: Wherefore God hears sinners; for if He do not hear sinners, the Publican said in vain, “Lord,...

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Whatever we ask necessary to salvation with humility, fervour, perseverance, and other due circumstances, we may be assured God will grant when it is best for us. If we do not obtain what we pray for, we must suppose it is not conducive to our salvation, in comparison of which all else is of little moment. (Haydock)

Glossa Ordinaria

AD 1480
Ord.: We ask with faith, we seek with hope, we knock with love. You must first ask that you may have; after that seek that you may find; and lastly, observe what you have found that you may enter in.


AD 420
Having before forbidden us to pray for things of the flesh, He now shows what we ought to ask, saying, “Ask, and it shall be given you.”

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Otherwise; Having given them some commands for the sanctification of prayer, saying, “Judge not,” He adds accordingly, “Ask, and it shall be given unto you,” as though He were to say, If ye observe this mercy towards your enemies, whatever seems to your shut, “knock, and it shall be opened to you. "Ask therefore in prayer, praying day and night; seek with care and toil; for neither by toiling only in the Scriptures do we gain knowledge without God’s grace, nor do we attain to grace without study, lest the gift of God should be bestowed on the careless. But knock with prayer, and fasting, and alms. For as one who knocks at a door, not only cries out with his voice, but strikes with his hand, so he who does good works, knocks with his works. But you will say, this is what I pray thatI may know and do, how then can I do it, before I receive? Do what you can that you may become able to do more, and keep what you know that you may come to know more. Or otherwise; having above commanded all ...

Theophylact of Ochrid

AD 1107
. In what has preceded the Lord has commanded us to do great and difficult things. Here He shows us how these things can be accomplished: through unceasing prayer. For He said, "Ask," that is, "keep asking," meaning, "ask continuously." For He did not say, "Ask one time." Then He affirms what He has said by an example from everyday life.

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation - 2 Peter 1:20

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