If you love me, you will keep my commandments
From the times when we were tender and helpless children, we have been taught to obey those set above us, submit to our parents, submit to authorities, e.t.c. It was drummed into our ears repeatedly the relevance of obedience in the smooth running of every unit of governance. This is why it is not surprising to find that God demands obedience from us; and from Genesis to Revelation, the Bible has a lot to say about obedience.
Obedience is not a death sentence, and it is something we can all groom ourselves to perform without too much thought. Obedience makes progress easy to achieve in any organization, and the more we are subject to those set above us, the more we can seek the same from those under our guidance. Through the old and new Testaments, we can conclude that despite the grace of God that has been poured out on us, believers have been called to a life of obedience.
How Are We To Obey
In this context, we already know that obedience means listening to God’s higher authority, submitting to his command, trusting in God’s word, and acting according to God’s desires. But how are we to do all these? We will train ourselves to respond promptly to God’s desires by praying non-stop. In the book of Jude, we were told how to build up ourselves; by praying in the holy ghost. So when we pray, we are strengthened to obey. This was also evident when Jesus was at Gethsemane, and he was able to obey God and die for us when he prayed.
Our manner of obedience also ought to be in faith, like the man that was let down to Jesus through the roof; we ought to pick up our beds and walk when Jesus commands it. If that man had doubted or remained in his comfortable bed for fear of falling if he attempted to stand, he would have made no progress. Jesus said, “get up, take your bed and walk” immediately; he did so with faith that God could not fail. The next time you receive a command from God that seems “inconsiderate of reality”, obey in faith that Jesus would not let you fall.
Obey God joyfully with a firm understanding that he will never lead you astray. Many persons obey God out of coercion from other believers, but this practice would rob you of the joys that willing obedience would bring. You have your own individuals relationship with God, and as you obey, you grow in the process. So consider God’s instructions to be another avenue for you to grow and experience a new dimension of God. Until Abraham took Isaac for sacrifice and God’s angel intercepted the process, providing a ram, Abraham would probably never have known God to be Jehovah Jireh.
Reasons Why We Would Obey
After considering how we are to obey, we shall examine ” why we should obey?”
- Obedience To God Is One Of The Ways We Worship Him.
To clarify the scriptures, we find that even though the Bible emphasizes obedience, the believer is not justified solely (made righteous) by obedience. There is the God part of salvation and then the man part of it. God already did the work, which is the first thing to note. Your faith needs to capture this first and then obey its declarations. Salvation is a gift of God, and we have done nothing to obtain it besides faith in and obedience to the truth. Thus, true Christian obedience flows from a heart of gratitude for the grace we have received from the Lord Christ.
- The Very Act Demonstrates Faith.
You can decide to obey God or not because, in his loving mercies, he left men with a will and the ability to make choices; however, you must note that when you do obey God, you demonstrate faith in him. Much more than offering tons of sacrifices, God would rather have the show of your confidence on the alter. Even though the laws of Moses required the Israelite people to offer sacrifices to God, those sacrifices and offerings were never intended to take the place of obedience.
This is why in 1 Samuel 15, we hear God speaks audibly concerning the subject; ” So Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king. 1 Samuel 15:22-23
- While Disobedience Leads To Sin And Death, Obedience Is Rewarded By God
We must obey God for reasons other than all we stand to gain; however, it is still a fact that obedience to God would add more blessings to our lives. From the story of Adam and his wife, we see the consequences of disobeying God. From the story of Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, e.t.c, we see the blessings that followed obeying God. So you would be doing yourself a huge disservice by attempting to disobey God.
- Jesus Called Us To A Life Of Obedience
We are not bastards to be left to behave as we wish; we are sons of a kingdom bound and regulated by certain rules; therefore, obedience is inevitable. Do not become a part of the group of individuals that take the grace of God in vain. Allow the word of God to shape and instruct you. Jesus didn’t live and revel in disobedience, do not give in to that pattern; obedience is the hallmark of our love for Christ.
We don’t learn obedience overnight; it’s a lifelong process, and we continually pursue it by making it a daily goal. The road of obedience is fraught with many pain, hurt, and discomfort. But when we do learn obedience, we do not just unlock financial blessings, and we command authority with God.