Obedience   1 comment

Obedience

Obedience

Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.Do everything without complaining and arguing, so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.” Phil 2:12

I don’t know about you, but I often find myself as a worker who complains when doing jobs which don’t fit me. Whether it pleases me or not, what matters is obedience to God. God is forming my character but I keep complaining or fail to obey Him. It’s a grace to serve God but I ignored His call for service several times.

What God seeks is obedience even if I feel uncomfortable, don’t see fruits and see myself surrounded by people better than me for the tasks He’s asking me to do.

But what do you think about this? A man with two sons told the older boy, ‘Son, go out and work in the vineyard today.’ The son answered, ‘No, I won’t go,’ but later he changed his mind and went anyway.Then the father told the other son, ‘You go,’ and he said, ‘Yes, sir, I will.’ But he didn’t go.“Which of the two obeyed his father?”They replied, “The first.” Mat 21:28

Sometimes, I see myself like this son who complains and grumble but at the end I’ll just do it though I don’t grasp everything.

If you obey God by doing what He asked you to do even though you know you were not fit for that job, what matters is OBEDIENCE. It is better to obey God than doing something He did not say. If you did the best you can out of obedience to God and still failed to excel, it does not matter. It’s obedience and the attitude of the heart that God looks at. What you’re doing is perhaps just a meaningless and frustrating puzzle in your eyes but remember that God has the big picture in mind.

If I ask a little boy “Son, I’m thirsty, please bring the jar of water ” and he spills most of the water on the way, will I blame him? Did not I know that this jar of water was heavy and was not easy for him to carry in his little hands? But this little boy obeyed. Many times you’ll receive critics even if you obey. Is it a solution to disobey in order to avoid critics? No way, this is cowardice and immaturity.

As per the Oxford dictionary, obedience means “submission to an authority” or “carry out a command/instruction”.

A soldier who died on the field because he obeyed the command of his superior will be honored. Those who disobey or flee are called deserters and cowards.

What do we do when the Lord of hosts commands? Do we close our ears? Do we tell Him “I just bought five pairs of oxen, bought a field or just got married?” Luke 14.

You can do a lot of good things for God without actually doing what He wished. If God asked you to do X why do you do Y? Is it because doing X is disturbing to you and that Y pleases you more?

If the little boy brought a bottle of oil instead without spilling a drop, could that quench my thirst? I would prefer the little water he brought than an unaltered oil volume.

This is what happened to Saul. God told him not to spare Agag and to destroy all the livestock but He disobeyed.

Saul and his men spared Agag’s life and kept the best of the sheep and goats, the cattle, the fat calves, and the lambs—everything, in fact, that appealed to them. They destroyed only what was worthless or of poor quality.”

His argument was this:

But I did obey the Lord,” Saul insisted. “I carried out the mission he gave me. I brought back King Agag, but I destroyed everyone else. Then my troops brought in the best of the sheep, goats, cattle, and plunder to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal.”

Sounds spiritual to be willing to keep the best of the sheep for sacrifice to Samuel’s God(not his God apparently).

And we know what Samuel said: “What is more pleasing to the Lord: your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice? Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.Rebellion is as sinful as witchcraft, and stubbornness as bad as worshiping idols.” 1 Sam 15:22

You can go to church, worship God with your beautiful voice and do so many good deeds but still not obeying God. The sacrifice of your lips, the money and time you give can be meaningless if you’re not obeying. It’s still better to do one thing God asks than doing 1000 things He did not ask. This is what we see nowadays in churches. Churches do a lot of good things and they still wonder why God is not blessing. God’s way of healing Namaan was simple:

Go and wash yourself seven times in the Jordan River. Then your skin will be restored, and you will be healed of your leprosy.”

The bible says that Naaman reasoned as such “Naaman became angry and stalked away. “I thought he would certainly come out to meet me!” he said. “I expected him to wave his hand over the leprosy and call on the name of the Lord his God and heal me! Aren’t the rivers of Damascus, the Abana and the Pharpar, better than any of the rivers of Israel? Why shouldn’t I wash in them and be healed?” So Naaman turned and went away in a rage.”

Often we get angry because we see God’s way of doing things embarrassing and weird. Let me tell you that God is reputed for not doing things our way. 2000 years ago, He proved it again on the cross.

Are not there cleaner rivers elsewhere? Or could not Elisha himself come and wave his hand? There’s also pride which often forbids us to obey. We reason like Naaman and say” Why did he send just a messenger, I am unworthy for his visit? Why should I dip myself in this dirty Jordan river 7 times?”

The officers said: “But his officers tried to reason with him and said, “Sir,if the prophet had told you to do something very difficult, wouldn’t you have done it? So you should certainly obey him when he says simply, ‘Go and wash and be cured!’”

Obedience to what God requires is rooted in trust. When someone knows God, he has the fear of God and will obey even though he knows not God’s plan.

It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going.” Hebrews 11:8

Do you think Abraham was not weighting the consequences when he left all his possessions and took his family to go in the midst of uncertainty? He lived by faith as a foreigner and in tents. Did he take it lightly when the angel of the Lord stopped him at the last second he was about to kill his son?

This is what the Lord says: Because you have obeyed me and have not withheld even your son, your only son, I swear by my own name that I will certainly bless you.”

Obedience to God here again, proved to be far greater than sacrifice. Christ’s perfect obedience was itself a living sacrifice. Jesus’ sacrifice started before the cross. During all His life He surrendered His will to the Father. The cross was His glorification, the perfect sacrifice of the one who entirely forfeited His rights. His food was to do the will of His Father He said (John 4:34).

Obedience to God is adoration because by definition you’re submitting yourself to His will. Disobedience and pride are strongly related because when you are prideful you do not want to submit to God’s command and will. Sin is itself disobedience. This was the original sin of Adam and Eve. Obedience always had great value in God’s eyes.

Just look at what the Son did:

Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous.” Rom 5:19

Let us be inspired by Jesus to live a life of obedience.

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Posted December 25, 2012 by Cedric in My writings (English)

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One response to “Obedience

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  1. Dear Lord, Please bring our heart to obey because we know that your Will is the best that can happen to us. Please help and find us faithful in obedience.

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