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James 4:2b (NASB)
You do not have because you do not ask.

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Bible Commentary

James 4:2b is a Bible verse in the New Testament where James is teaching believers why they should pray.

James is a very straight-forward, in-your-face kind of preacher. He does not beat around the bush. He speaks the truth, no matter how hard it is to hear.

Sometimes, we just need a wake-up call. There is something amiss in our lives; we can’t seem to shake the dark cloud that seems to follow us around. We’ve waited, hoped, endured, believed and expected, and it still doesn’t happen.


James 4:2b is speaking to us: You do not have because you do not ask.

But wait, maybe we have prayed about it for a very long time, and still nothing has changed.

Let’s take a look at the Greek meanings of “ask,” which are: to ask; beg, call for, crave, desire, require.

If you’ve already prayed for it, maybe it’s someone else we’re supposed to ask. Let’s ascertain the position God has put us in and the relationships He has brought into our lives.


We have not because we ask not. James 4:2b

God has given each of us spiritual gifts and talents. Each of us has a calling, a passion if-you-will, for something. Maybe we felt it and knew it in the past, but things changed and the opportunities to use those gifts faded away.

Or, maybe you don’t know your calling yet and it needs to be uncovered.

Either way, it’s time to awaken that passion, that desire. Look again at the Greek meanings of “ask” - a craving.

Unlocking the Truth - Our Entrance is Abundantly Supplied

Peter had some very wise words to say in 2 Peter 1:10-11,

“Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble; 11 for in this way the entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly supplied to you.”

God chose a calling specifically for each one of us, and our entrance into the Kingdom of God is abundantly supplied to us.


In other words, we already have everything we need. Look around. He has given us the resources we need to prosper. Most likely, we also need the gifts and resources of others that He has put in our life to make it happen. And they need ours!

This is a Kingdom Community. He wants His family to work together. He designed it that way. We have to ask for help. Others need our help.

We are not a one-man band. We must stop sulking and start asking!

James 4:2b
You have not because you ask not.

Paul said we need to stir up the gifts within us. He didn’t tell us to wait for someone else to notice our gifts. He instructed us to “fan into flame the gift of God” (2 Timothy 1:6).

First comes desire, which brings the will and courage to ask someone for help. If we stay focused on fanning our flame, then our passion will take over. Then we’ll keep on asking.

A wise man by the name of Roy Smoothe said, “The starting point of all achievement is a burning DESIRE. Weak desire brings weak results, just as a small fire makes a small amount of heat.”

So then it is our responsibility--our duty--to fan the flame that God put within us. Focus on that one thing—your gift from God.

We are the family of God. He designed a perfect community where our gifts come together in perfect harmony. Don’t be afraid to ask. Fan your flame, and be the inspiration for others to fan theirs.

Study the Bible verse of James 4:2b, remember your gifting, stir it up and ask for the help you need. It will be a blessing to someone else.





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