Obedience

From the beginning of time God has expected obedience from us. In Genesis the second chapter beginning in verse fifteen it reads, “Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.  And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die." Adam and Eve’s life in the Garden was predicated on their obedience to this one command. They disobeyed the command of God and subsequently were removed from the Garden of Eden. God has not left us to our own devices. He expects complete obedience to his will. Like Adam and Eve the fate of our eternal life is balanced against our compliance with the will of God.

We have but one purpose in this life and that is to seek and follow the commands of God. Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man's all. For God will bring every work into judgment, Including every secret thing, Whether good or evil.” Solomon aptly points out that not only are we to follow the commands of God, but we will be judged by our compliance with His will. Is it any wonder that Jesus tells us, "If you love Me, keep My commandments.” (John 14:15) The simple truth is that God has something for each of us to do, and it all begins with our humble submission to His will.

We are all the creation of God. (Ephesians 2:10) As the Creator, He has the right to command our unquestioning obedience. But, our God did not simply command obedience He sent his only Son to pave our way.  “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. “ (John 3:16-17) Jesus came to this world and demonstrated the unwavering obedience we must all follow. Jesus “was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.” (Hebrews 4:15) God, our creator and ruler of the universe could have justly demanded our compliance to his will. Instead he sent his Son to cleanse us from our sins, and show us the way to salvation.  It is this example of love that should motivate our compliance with the commands of God. “We love Him because He first loved us.” (1Jn 4:19) “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.” (1 John 5:3) Christ Jesus wants us to follow Him, He wants us to keep the commandments, He wants our obedience.

Jesus said in Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Jesus asks us to come to Him. But, He has something for us to do. He has commands for us to follow.  The same God that created the world loves and cares for you. He sent his Son to die for your sins (John 3:16-17), and He asks for your obedience. What will you answer?

Philippians 2:5-13 “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,  and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.”