Thomas Watson once wrote, "The great design of God in His Word is to make us doers of His will." (Thomas Watson, The Lord's Prayer, pp. 151-156).
Even a cursory reading of the Bible makes it clear that God intends for us to be obedient to His plan and purposes. The greatest work that one can do along with the greatest joy that we can experience is to find and do the will of God. Let me say five (5) things about this:
First of all - We have a tendency to make this concept harder than it really is.
There are many things God has chosen to "hide" or keep from believers. We don't know when God will rapture His church from the earth, we don't know who the Anti-Christ is, nor do we know the reasons behind many of the trials that fall upon us. But we can know God's will. He has revealed His moral will in the Bible and makes it very easy to see. Admittedly many times His will is found in the "do's and don'ts" given to us. God clearly marks out the means and manner in which we should conduct our lives. We make the will of God more difficult when we try to discover hidden meaning meant for
We have a tendency to confuse "direction" with "the revealed moral standards of God. It is not difficult to see that God's will for married couples is to avoid adultery and all forms of immorality. Or God wills that believers do not steal, lie, murder, envy, lust, or gossip. But we know life can be very confusing at times. On top of that confusion lies our own desire to actually want to do God's will and not mistake it or miss it. So, we think that we should go to the Bible to discover and decide what God's will is concerning various aspects of our life, such as:
- what college to attend?
- what degree or training to pursue?
- what job or career to pursue?
- what car to buy?
- what spouse to marry?
- how many children to have?
- what house to buy?
- what state to move to or live in?
The actual truth is that we can do almost anything we want. We can go to what ever college we would like to go to. We can pursue the degree or training that interests and suits us the most. We can buy whatever car we want. We can actually marry whom we want, with very little limitations attached. (must be the opposite sex, must be a believer). We can by which ever house we like and we can live where ever we like. The following considerations are the only things that govern our choices or decisions:
- Does it violate any known standard, rule, principle, precept, command, or directive already given in Scripture? (Decisions or choices based on envy, greed, pride, or fleshly desires are to be avoided on the basis that they clearly violate the revealed standards of God.)
- Does it demean, diminish, destroy, or distract our commitment to Christ in any way? (It is not wise to take a job or promotion that forces us to move away from either or both a good Christian support system or a good local fellowship of believers; sometimes more money can be a detriment than a blessing)
- Does it lead us into temptation or sin against God?
We can also use this test when we are trying to make a decision:
- is it necessary for us? (Paul said all things are lawful but not all things are necessary, I Corinthians 10:23.
- does it build me up? (1 Corinthians 6:12)
- does it bring in under its power or domination robbing me of my ability to serve God? (1 Corinthians 9:27)
- will it cause me or others to stumble? (Luke 17:2)
Desiring to do God's will demonstrates your love for Christ and it demonstrates a true relationship with Christ. Those who have no interest in doing the will of God show that they have no relationship to God. (Mark 3:35, Eph 6:6)
Fourthly - refusing to do the will of God is very foolish and very dangerous.
God will if necessary impose His will upon us through either chastisement or punishment. Do not, I repeat, do not listen to and believe these foolish people who state that "God will never violate your so called free will."
- First of all, mankind lost their freewill in Adam when he sinned in the Garden of Eden.
- Second, the only freedom that you have is to obey your fallen, depraved, and sinful nature. Everything you do, no matter how noble or virtuous is tainted with sin.
- Third, you gain freedom back when you die in Christ at your conversion. When you die in Christ, you die to the Slavery of sin, and now have the freedom to choose to sin or to do righteousness. God punishes the wicked who violates and disregards His will and He chastises children whom he loves when they violate His will.
Fifthly - Doing God's will, will be rewarded.
Obedience produces reward. One day all believers will stand before God at the Bema Seat of Christ and be rewarded for our obedience. (2 Corinthians 5:19) Believers who were obedient will be rewarded with silver, gold, and precious stones.
Let me close with Thomas Watson once again, "Doing Gods' will is both your comfort and your crown." (The Lord's Prayer, pp. 151-156)