Today’s reading: Gen. 11 – 12:20; Ps. 4:1-3; Prov. 1:28-33; and Matt. 5:27-48
Abraham’s faith came through his obedience to God
The major characteristic of a truly mindful Christian is their obedience to the sovereign will of God. We grow, through our obedience, by establishing our faith in God and His promised blessings. Our confidence is in God. Not in our own self or in others. And, our faith is not established by merely hearing God’s voice, it is established when we actively respond. This is where we learn to trust in Him while studying and meditating on His word.
Another aspect of our obedience is how we wait upon the Lord. Our Heavenly Father is very time conscious in regard to our ability to act in obedience. As we come to fully trust in God, have confidence He will bring about the blessings and promises; we come to realize that he is neither early or late.
As we grow in obedience, we come to recognize that God’s plan is not based on common sense. Sometimes, what our Heavenly Father may require might appear to be quite ridiculous from our own perspective and understanding. Along with this, our obedience will undergo testing. This is because, just like Abraham, God understands and knows the motivations of our heart as we continue to grow in obedience to His will.
Finally, we learn to promptly respond to His call. The greatest travesty in a Christian life is fearing the consequences of responding in obedience. Yet, we come to realize that God will never require us to do something that is outside of His will and plan for our own lives. It is our responsibility and duty to walk in obedience. It is His responsibility and duty to manage the consequences that incur because of our obedience.
Since God connects obedience to blessings. He also connects disobedience to suffering. When we are faithful to Him, even during hardships, our Heavenly Father will use these seasons of adversity to deepen our faith and confidence in Him. However, if we lack faith, doubt, and succumb to the hardships, we are left shipwrecked. We are blessed, even in the midst of our trials, when we call out to Him. He hears us and sustains us.
Therefore, obedience is not manifested by our outward compliance. Our Heavenly Father is more concerned with the inward change that has brought one to a spiritually transformed life. A life completely devoted to Him and not religious ceremony, doctrinal knowledge, or religious worship. Those who are truly spiritually transformed (born again into a new life ) will desire to do His will.
Because of this transformation, our word becomes powerful and trustworthy than any oath or vow we may take. Thus, our spiritual transformation leads to being perfected through Christ – just as God, our Father in Heaven is perfect. We are clothed, through our faith, with the righteousness of Jesus Christ.