Luke 11:14-54

Read: Luke 11:14-54

But he said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” Luke 11:28

The focus of today’s post is: obedience.

Jesus is teaching that true blessing from God is found through an obedient heart that seeks to honor God. Obedience in this context is not legalistic. True obedience to Christ should flow from love for Christ.

John 14:15 says, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” Notice that keeping Jesus’ commands here does not seem to be a possibility, it is an expectation.

This emphasis on obedience reminds me of a section from the book The Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges. I hope this encourages you to see reflect on how obedience should translate in your day to day life.

During a certain period in my Christian life I thought that any effort on my part to live a
holy life was "of the flesh" and that "the flesh profits for nothing." I thought God would not bless any effort on my part to live the Christian life, just as He would not bless any effort on my part to become a Christian by good works. Just as I received Christ Jesus by faith, so I was to seek a holy life only by faith. Any effort on my part was just getting in God's way. I misapplied the statement, "Ye shall not need to fight in this battle; set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the Lord" (2 Chronicles 20:17, KJV), to mean that I was just to turn it all over to the Lord and He would fight the sin in my life. In fact, in the margin of the Bible I was using during that period I wrote alongside the verse these words: "Illustration of walking in the Spirit."

How foolish I was. I misconstrued dependence on the Holy Spirit to mean I was to
make no effort, that I had no responsibility. I mistakenly thought if I turned it all over to the Lord, He would make my choices for me and would choose obedience over disobedience. All I needed was to look to Him for holiness. But this is not God's way. He makes provision for our holiness, but He gives us the responsibility of using those provisions.

It is time for us Christians to face up to our responsibility for holiness. Too often we
say we are "defeated" by this or that sin. No, we are not defeated; we are simply disobedient! It might be well if we stopped using the terms "victory" and "defeat" to describe our progress in holiness. Rather we should use the terms "obedience" and "disobedience." When I say I am defeated by some sin, I am unconsciously slipping out from under my responsibility. I am saying something outside of me has defeated me. But when I say I am disobedient, that places the responsibility for my sin squarely on me. We may, in fact, be defeated, but the reason we are defeated is because we have chosen to disobey. We have chosen to entertain lustful thoughts, or to harbor resentment, or to shade the truth a little.

We need to brace ourselves up, and to realize that we are responsible for our thoughts, attitudes, and actions. We need to reckon on the fact that we died to sin's reign, that it no longer has any dominion over us, that God has united us with the risen Christ in all His power, and has given us the Holy Spirit to work in us. Only as we accept our responsibility and appropriate God's provisions will we make any progress in our pursuit of holiness.

By: Graham Withers

No Comments

Get The App

Stay connected and get the latest content.

Download The App