THE BENEFITS OF OBEDIENCE AND TRUST IN THE LORD AND IN HIS WORD
A Compilation of messages that explain Bible verses on this topic.
WE RECEIVE GOD’S LIGHT BY FAITH AND OBEDIENCE
“Who among you fears the Lord? Who obeys the voice of His Servant? Who walks in darkness and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord and rely upon his God.” - Isaiah 50:10
The whole 50th chapter from the book of Isaiah prophesies about Jesus, the coming Messiah. For those of us who have already received the Light of Jesus this verse is easier to understand than for the Jews of Isaiah days. The persons addressed in this call, are those who reverently “fear the Lord” and “obey the voice of His Servant.”
Jesus was and is the most perfect Servant of the Lord and because of His total obedience, God gave Him all authority on heaven and earth. He is the light of the world and only those who receive Him as Lord and Savior, can have His true light. Without following Jesus’ counsel, one walks in darkness, deep trouble and cannot have His shinny splendor in their heart.
We are urged to trust, rely upon God and be confident in the name of our Lord, so that we may lean upon and be supported by Him.
THERE IS PEACE IN OBEYING GOD
Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble. Lord, I hope for Your salvation, and I do Your commandments. - Psalms 119:165-166
Submission to God’s Word brings true peace. God gave us His Law, for our benefit and not to be a severe Father. Only when we obey His will, do we not sin, keeping our peace and sparing ourselves much pain and suffering. As Moses wrote in Deuteronomy 4:40 “you shall therefore keep His statutes and His commandments which I command you today, that it may go well with you and with your children...” For things to go right and us to prosper in life, we need to follow God’s instructions.
Sin steals our peace and joy, but when we love God’s Law, we know it is best for us and we love to obey it. While we live in obedience to God’s Word, we do not give the devil the right to hurt us, because we have no unforgiven sin to condemn us. Because we live right, loving and obeying God, and because we have an even better Covenant, we have our sins forgiven and washed away by Jesus’ blood. All of us who die in Christ are saved and will make it to heaven.
THE FRUIT OF OUR LIVES DEPENDS ON WHOM WE OBEY
For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. - Romans 6:20-21
What an amazing truth! While we were slaves to sin, we could have nothing in common with righteousness, so we were totally free from it. That means that we had no desire to know what God wanted and cared even less to obey His will.
We can all say that there were no eternal benefits or true good fruit from the time we lived as slaves to sin. On the contrary, we might be ashamed of some of what we did before knowing Christ. Nothing good comes out of sin, and the end of it is death. But in Jesus we found true life, one that is worth living and which will continue into everlasting life.
THE OBEDIENCE AND FEAR OF THE LORD ARE THE CONCLUSION OF ALL KNOWLEDGE
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. - Ecclesiastes 12:13-14
Even for the wisest man ever, life was not easy or perfect. When Solomon was writing the Ecclesiastes book, he was disappointed and worn out by what was going on in his life. His conclusion about all he knew and learned over the years about having the key to a blessed life is: “Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all.” For King Solomon had everything he wanted, knew more than most people of his time, had the highest position in his nation, and so much power, that it was easy to reach the point where he had experienced all this world can offer. Life viewed from just the human point of view may seem hopeless. True life is the one only lived for God’s glory.
God created us to be His now and forever. But because He gave us the freedom to choose, it is up to us to live right for Him and not fear Judgment day. God is omniscient, He knows everything about us, even better than we do. He loves us with the most perfect and unconditional love until the end and wants what is best for us. But God is also just. If we reject Him now, He will not force us to be with Him in heaven, when we leave this earth.
WE HAVE TO CONTROL WHAT WE THINK AND SUBDUE OUR THOUGHTS TO JESUS CHRIST
Casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, - 2 Corinthians 10:5
It is up to us to be willing to destroy any attempt of the enemy in trying to take control of our minds. The devil drops his thoughts into our minds trying to make us sin. What is tempting for one person may not be tempting for another. The enemy knows what attracts us and what to use to deceive us. We are the ones who have to “resist him, steadfast in the faith," (1 Peter 5:9) no matter how many times he returns, or how attractive he “packages” his deception. If we do not know our weaknesses and do not fight against them with the Bible verses that give us victory in these areas, we become his victims. The Bible has the right teachings for any problem we are going through and by learning the truth of the Scripture, we become stronger and the temptations will have less power over us.
How can we submit our thoughts to Jesus? Shortly after I came to Christ, I spilled the cleaning powder on the kitchen carpet. My habit was to be very upset with myself and call myself clumsy, careless and so on. Does it sound familiar? But the Holy Spirit brought these verses into my mind and stopped me from acting as usual. I began to say, "I am bringing all these negative thoughts into captivity to the obedience of Christ. In Jesus, I have the victory and getting mad is not helping me at all. On the contrary, by keeping calm and having the right attitude I will be able to clean this mess, better and faster.” And it worked! Thank God, I have had to apply these verses endless times, over the years. I cannot say that I have managed to keep my right attitude every time, but I have made great progress and I will continue to grow in the right direction with Jesus’ help. There is hope for every single one of us!
WE ARE HAPPY, WHEN WE OBEY GOD
You shall do what is right and good in the sight of the Lord, so that it may be well with you and that you may go in and possess the good land which the Lord swore to your fathers - Deuteronomy 6:18
God promises us such amazing blessings in His Word and all He is asking from us is to “do what is right and good in the sight of the Lord.” By doing what is right, we are empowering God to work in our behalf, bless, protect and make His wonderful plan for our lives to come to pass. When we do the opposite, we hurt ourselves, as we empower the powers of darkness to attack and destroy us.
Our welfare depends on our obedience. Even when the wrong decisions of those around us are affecting us, as long as we remain in the palm of God’s hand, He will turn all the bad into something beneficial for us in the long term. The only way we truly change and become more like Christ is by going through hardships. While things go well, our carnal nature attempts to overcome the Spirit and pride rises up. We are tempted to believe that we can do it all and we can make it on our own, without God’s help. We can hurt ourselves by being prideful, without any help from the enemy.
Only by living an obedient life, loving God and pleasing Him, can we enter in the possession of all that God has prepared for us to have. The happier life for each of us is the one that God planned for us, ahead of time. The more we follow God’s plan, the more fulfilled and happier we are here and now and for all eternity!
DISOBEDIENCE HAS A HIGH PRICE
But he sent messengers to him, saying, “What have I to do with you, king of Judah? I have not come against you this day, but against the house with which I have war; for God commanded me to make haste. Refrain from meddling with God, who is with me, lest He destroy you.” Nevertheless Josiah would not turn his face from him, but disguised himself so that he might fight with him, and did not heed the words of Necho from the mouth of God. So he came to fight in the Valley of Megiddo. – 2 Chronicles 35:21-22
The Lord changed His will about the punishment His people deserved for their sins, after the sincere repentance of King Josiah and his desire to seek and fulfill the Lord’s will. God postponed the punishment for the nation of Judah until after the death of Josiah. As the Lord had told him, “you shall be gathered to your grave in peace; and your eyes will not see all the calamities that I will bring to this place”(2 Kings 22:20). It is amazing that after the people were so sinful, the Lord gave them a king to turn their hearts toward Him, giving them the chance to be forgiven. If Josiah would have continued to seek the will of the Lord in all of his decisions, both his fate and the people’s might have been much better.
This is a valid truth in all matters. When we are faithful in our obedience to the Lord and ask for His help, acknowledging our total dependence on Him, our lives are very blessed with much more peace and joy.
If God's sovereignty means that He controls everything that happens, then King Josiah would not have died at such a young age (he was only 39) after being wounded in battle (2 Kings 22:20). But the Lord did not force Josiah to do His will and He does not force us either. From 2 Chronicles 35:21 we learn that Neco, the Pharaoh of Egypt, warned Josiah not to fight against him, because he would have been fighting against God, who had sent Neco to fight against Carchemish. But not even then, did Josiah ask God what His will was.
Stubbornness and pride cost us dearly, and the enemy uses them very efficiently to push us to self-destruction.
ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD’S PROMISES, IN SPITE OF THE PHYSICAL EVIDENCE
Who, contrary to hope, in hope believed, so that he (Abraham) became the father of many nations, according to what was spoken, “So shall your descendants be.” And not being weak in faith, he did not consider his own body, already dead (since he was about a hundred years old), and the deadness of Sarah’s womb. - Romans 4:18-19
Abraham was seventy-five years old (Genesis 12:4) when the Lord first told him that He would make him a great nation and called him to leave his country (Haran) and go to the promised land (Canaan). It was about fifteenth years before the Lord's angels came back and told him that in a year, he and Sarah would be parents. For all these years, Abraham had continued to believe without having anything else but the promise of the Lord. Sarah gave birth for the first time, when she was ninety years old, and Abraham became the father of the promised son when he was one hundred years old, by having extreme faith.
For each of us, there are certain things that are part of the marvelous plan that the Lord has for our lives and which demand extreme faith on our part, to come to pass. Even if we deviated from the path that the Lord wanted for us, if we still want to do His will and return to Him, the Lord can still show us the way He has prepared for us, and by faith we can stay faithful to the end.
The gifts that the Lord has placed in us are there, and if we ask the Holy Spirit, He will show us what they are and will help us grow in them. Nothing can give us more satisfaction than living our lives for the Lord, fulfilling the call He has for each of us.
ABRAHAM CHOSE TO BELIEVE GOD’S PROMISE AND NOT DOUBT
He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform. - Romans 4:20-21 Abraham strengthened himself by his faith and continued to give glory to God for fifteen years until he saw the fulfillment of the Lord's promise. How wonderful! In all those years, he refused to doubt that he would receive what God had promised. For someone who, until he was ninety years old, had no child, to believe that he would have so many offspring that he will become the father of many nations and the whole earth would be to be blessed in his seed was enormous! And indeed, Jesus was born of the descendants of Isaac, and through him all the earth is blessed! Abraham knew that God would do what He promised, and nothing could have shaken his belief! Such a faith is counted by the Lord as righteousness for the one who has it. He who has such a faith, knows his Lord, and can live purely by fulfilling the Scriptures
BY FAITH WE ARE CONSIDERED RIGHTEOUS
Now not for his sake alone was it written that it was credited to him, but for our sake also—to whom righteousness will be credited, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead— who was betrayed and crucified because of our sins, and was raised [from the dead] for our justification [our acquittal—absolving us of all sin before God]. - Romans 4:23-25
Abraham’s faith was counted as righteousness, and this is true for us as well; if Jesus is our Lord and we have faith in God the Father, who has raised Jesus from the dead after He had paid for our sins, dying in our place. The wages of sin is death. Jesus died and rose from the dead, that we might be considered sinless and be justified. We cannot ever be righteous enough through our own good works. If that were possible, Jesus would not have had to die. But Father God gave His Son so we might be saved and be with our Lord forever in heaven.
We can be righteous, pure and sinless, only by firm faith in Jesus Christ and by what He has done for us. We cannot believe in Jesus without believing in God the Father and the Holy Spirit, because all three are one!