-Word of the Week-
Early this morning, a dear friend of mine sent me a special text. Here’s what it said:
“And we will receive from him whatever we ask because we obey him and do the things that please him.” 1 John 3:22
Simple, right? After all, it was just a text message of one Bible verse. But in the moments after reading those words, I was certain the Lord had a purpose for prompting Dan to send me the text: to get me to examine the word obedience.
So what does it mean to obey? What is obedience? Below I have definitions from both the Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary and the Holman Bible Dictionary. Here’s what they have to say…
Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary:
- “[Obedience is] an act or instance of obeying”
- “[To obey is] to follow the commands or guidance of; to conform to or comply with”
- “[Obedience is] to hear God’s Word and act accordingly”
- “[Obedience is] to hear or to listen in a state of submission”
- “[Obedience is] essential for worship”
- “[Obedience is] motivated by our love for God
- “[Obedience] springs from gratitude for grace received”
- “[Obedience] means imitating God in holiness, humility, and love”
- “[Obedience] comes from a heart that trusts God”
- Since sin distances us from God, we cannot live connected to God while living in disobedience (1 John 1:6).
- Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to convict the world concerning sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:7-8).
- We cannot please God in our flesh, but if the Spirit lives within us, we can put the deeds of the flesh to death and live by the Spirit (Romans 8:8-13)
- Living by the Spirit is evidenced by our actions as we “walk by” or live in submission to the Spirit (Galatians 5:25)
- We experience the fulness of His love–by becoming children of God through living in submission to the Spirit (Romans 8:14)–that enjoying and keeping his commandments is the only response that can attempt to reflect our love and thankfulness for Him (1 John 5:3).