The Bible tells us that the Lord is no respecter of persons. And because he doesn’t show favoritism—because his promises never change from generation to generation—we can ask him to show us the same mercies he has shown his people through history. King Mahasseh sinned worse than any king before him yet when he repented, he was restored (see 2 King 21:1-18).

The Lord’s mercies never fail, and his precedent examples of past mercies should provide each of us with bold assurance to bring our own requests to him. So, dear saint, when you fear you may have sinned too often against the Lord’s mercy…when you think you’ve crossed a line, and God has given up on you…when you’re discouraged, cast down by failure or by unChristlike behavior…when you wonder if God is putting you on a shelf, or withholding his love from you because of past sins—if you truly have a repentant heart, then lay hold of this truth: GOD CHANGES NOT.

Bind God to his Word. Write down every remembrance you have of what he has done for you in past years. Then go to Scripture and find other instances of his “mercy precedents” with his people. Bring these lists before the Lord and remind him: “God, you cannot deny your own Word. You are the same yesterday, today and forever.”

I urge you, do not neglect doing this. Often we rush into God’s presence making our requests passionately and zealously. But we wilt in our time of prayer, because we don’t come to his throne prepared. We must have a fixed position when we come to God. True boldness doesn’t begin with emotions; it begins when we are fully persuaded. And so we must build a case beforehand not just to present to God, but to fortify our own faith.

Today we have something that the Old Testament saints could only dream of. And that is God’s own Son seated at the right hand of the Father-Judge. We know the Son, because he is our blood-covenant brother, by adoption. And we are able to claim our blood-tie to him whenever we stand before the Judge and bind him to his own arguments: “Father, I have nothing to bring you but your own Word. You promised that I would be complete in Christ, that you would keep me from falling, and Jesus would be my intercessor. You promised you would open your ears to my petition and supply all my needs. Oh, Lord, have mercy and grace on me now, in my hour of need. Amen!”

I truly believe that God is wonderfully blessed when we approach his throne with this kind of boldness, binding him to his own Word. It’s as if he says to us, “Finally, you got it. You bless me!”