“For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” Romans 8:6
Arguably the number one question Christians ask has to do with God’s will. Personally, I believe discerning God’s will is an easy thing; especially as it pertains to understanding our role in His plan for the present moment. Let us consider a few passages on the topic of God’s will, keeping in mind that these are just a sampling.
Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing. And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. Be at peace among yourselves. Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all. See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:11-18
That verse concludes that all the recorded activities, although not an exhaustive list, are the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. So if you woke up this morning saying, “Gee, I don’t know what God wants me to do,” start with these:
- Comfort and/or encourage someone (this is God’s will)
- Recognize & esteem your pastor and elders (this is God’s will)
- Keep the peace (this is God’s will)
- Patiently educate and/or care for the needy (this is God’s will)
- Fight evil by pursing goodness (this is God’s will)
- Rejoice (this is God’s will)
- Pray (this is God’s will)
- Give thanks (this is God’s will)
Have you done any of these things today? If you haven’t, you should know that you are not submitted to God’s will. Have you even prayed? Pastor Chuck Smith has said repeatedly, “We can do more after we pray, but we can’t do more until we pray.” That my friend is pure, God-inspired wisdom.
Here’s another one:
Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men 1 Peter 2:13-15
The Father has placed each of us under various authorities; from the President of the United States to the cops in our local police departments, from our parents to our teachers, from our bosses to the mall security guards. It’s a huge list and it’s God’s will that we’re obedient to their lawful rule, providing it doesn’t contract His authority.
I believe that when we are disobedient, we effectively move ourselves from beneath the spout where God’s blessings pour out — God doesn’t stop the flow, but we move away when we sidestep His will. And I can argue that sidestepping is the equivalent to back-sliding.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Romans 12:1-2
What’s God’s will for you today?
Be a nonconformist!
Walk away from what the world and satan wants you to become and allow the Lord to give you a Holy make-over. If you have been waiting for God to reveal His specific plan (will) for you, but sense you’re not receiving any divine direction, there is a chance you haven’t been walking in His will with any consistency. Today is the day that can change.
What about God’s will in regard to the choices we make: should we go there, should we buy this, should we marry that guy; how are we to know? Well, assuming we have been faithful with these other things, there are essentially four (4) criteria that we should consider before making every decision.
What Does God Say?
The probability exists that your issue has been addressed within the scriptures. In other words, there is a Biblical foundation that you can base a decision on. You may not find an exact match, but if you were wrestling with the idea of getting a tattoo or piercing (for example), you would likely happen upon a complementary directive in God’s word regarding stewardship and/or honoring the temple that is your body. That’s step one.
What would your pastor (or an elder, deacon, etc.) do?
I confess the hardest thing for me to do is ask my pastor his opinion on matters. Why? Because I know he will give me his opinion. Be that as it may, God has placed these people in our lives and they are valuable resources who have the capacity to look at things from an unbiased and Biblical position.
If we look long and hard enough, we can find someone who will agree with us. This is not God’s will — He would rather we ask our pastor or elder who is not afraid of telling us the truth or losing us as a friend.
A wise man will hear and increase learning, And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel, To understand a proverb and an enigma, The words of the wise and their riddles. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:5-7
What has your experience shown you; how does your track record look? If you are in the habit of following the previous steps, you probably have a history of making good choices. A person who prays and patiently waits, searches God’s word, and seeks Godly counsel, typically makes good choices. Is that your testimony? Is it your routine to allow your Creator to search the depths of your heart?
The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it? Jeremiah 17:9
Who Has Led You to This Point?
How did you get here? When you boil it all down, there is really only two ways you have come to the fork in the road we call choice: you either traveled there on the flesh-express, or the Holy Spirit has brought you to this place. How can you be sure which it is? The answer lies in going back to what you know to be true regarding God’s will and complying with it. Remember, God’s will brings you closer, while satan’s will widens the gap.
”However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come…Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” John 16:13, Galatians 5:16
- What do these passages say about God?
- What do they say about you?
- What’s our recourse?
These articles may or may not relate to this blog (I haven’t read them all):
- Courage to Question (myheartsmission.com)
- You Are Special! (aviesplace.wordpress.com)
- Words can nullify God’s work and/or attributes! (keyword-power.com)
- When to make your move (sherrylcook.wordpress.com)
- Choices (attilaovari.com)
- Seek Spiritual Discernment (pttyann2.wordpress.com)
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