Following Jesus as a Person Obedient to the Father
“I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me” (John 5:30);
But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do…” (John 14:31).
Recently, I heard Dr. Charles Stanley say in a message, “It’s not always easy to obey God, but it is always the wisest and best thing to do.” Obedience to God and His word is essential in maintaining a right and unhindered fellowship with Him. Throughout the Bible, beginning in Genesis, obeying God is unequivocally important!
In the New Testament, after being commanded and threatened by the religious authorities to discontinue preaching the message of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Peter and the disciples responded, “We ought to obey God rather than man” (Acts 5:29). They continued to preach the gospel message in the power of God and influenced many to repentance and trust in Jesus as Lord! The Scriptures enlighten us of their reason; “We are witnesses to these things, and also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him” (Acts 5:32).
The power of the Holy Spirit is available to every follower of Jesus. Many Christians desire to have the power of God upon their lives and to make an eternal difference for the glory of God. The key to obtaining this is a life of obedience to God and His Word! Why would God willingly fill and empower those who do not obey Him? He will not!
God has chosen to honor and bless obedience to His Word! “Observe and obey all these words which I command you, that it may go well with you and your children after you forever, when you do what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God” (Deuteronomy 12:28). The twelfth chapter of Deuteronomy provides both blessing of obedience and curse for disobedience for a nation. The Bible records in 1 Samuel 15:22, that to obey is better than sacrifice! God promised that individuals who were attentive and obedient to the biblical truths would be blessed with success and would prosper. “This book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success” (Joshua 1:8). Dr. Stanley provides this insightful truth, “You cannot walk in obedience to God with a closed Bible!”
Obedience to God-the Father as exemplified by the Lord Jesus Christ is doing God’s will, God’s way, and in God’s time! In other words, doing what God says, doing it the way He says, and doing it when He says! As Dr. Stanley also said, “My responsibility is to obey God and leave the results and consequences of my obedience to Him!” You, we, should not be so concerned as to how things will turn out, but to be faithful to live in obedience to God and His Word. The Lord Jesus was obedient to the Father in all things and ended up on a cross!
Philippians 2:8 states that the Lord Jesus humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Interestingly, Hebrews 5:8 states that the Lord Jesus, “though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered.” Therefore, obedience to God does not come naturally to us, it must be learned! Are you learning?
Some thoughts to ponder,
Robert D. Finley, Ph.D.