Obedience to God

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Discipleship is the focal point in an obedient Christian life.  By living a life that reflects the brilliant light that Jesus infuses into the life of the believer is the best way to open the mind of the unbeliever to the possibilities offered by Jesus. The core of that daily life revolves around a relationship with God based on obedience and faith. The disciple cannot transform another person, only the Holy Spirit can do that. The disciple can lead another person in the right direction. Consistent obedience to God and to the will of God demonstrates the benefits gained from that relationship. When a nonbeliever notices the disciple’s life he is drawn to want the same for himself. This is what Jesus meant in Mark 1:17. “Come after me and be my disciples, and I will make you become fishers of men.”

The relationship between God and his believers with respect to the qualities of love and obedience precisely parallel the relationship between parents and children. Babies and later adolescents and finally teenagers are truly dependent on their parents for everything. They depend on them for a warm place to live, food to eat, everything they need to grow and prosper.  Parents have hopes and dreams for their children from birth followed by a plan to help them achieve all that they can. For his disciples, God also has a plan but they often don’t know what it is.  Jesus gives his outline for discipleship in John 13:34-35. “I give you a new commandment: that you should love one another. Just as I have loved you, so you too should love one another. By this shall all men know that you are my disciples if you love one another.”

God never forces his disciples to be obedient but they will choose to do so in order to stay close to him.

Jesus said “if you want to come with me, you must forget yourself, take up your cross every day, and follow me” in Luke 9:23. It is their choice to be obedient. “Come after me” means be my disciple. “Deny himself” mean give up whatever plan the disciple might have for his life and be obedient and follow God’s plan instead. “Take up his cross daily”. Obedience to God and service in discipleship is a day to day yet lifelong relationship.

Disciples are born again followers of Jesus.

They have assured of a place in heaven. They don’t have to earn that place in heaven. It was given to then free by the grace of God. They will obey God’s will because God offers so much withdrawal from that relationship that would be unspeakable. Jesus died as an act of obedience to his Father. That is the definitive example for his disciples to follow.

Because the Holy Spirit transformed the disciple into a new being when that disciple accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior, that disciple will no longer want to deny God his will. The knowledge and understanding of what his relationship with God is worth to him will inspire him to follow God’s plan as it is revealed to him.

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