Throughout the whole Bible, obedience from man shines as one of the desires of God. Even though there may have been times when man could not understand why God commanded certain things, yet he has always been rewarded when he obeys the voice of God.
We need not expect to have blessings from God unless we are willing to submit to the commands which God has given.
There have been different commands given in different periods of time. Who is required to obey a command depends according to whom the command has been given.
FOR EXAMPLE: God commanded Adam and Eve not to eat of the forbidden tree. We have no such command today.
God commanded Noah to build the ark. We are not commanded to do so today.
God commanded Moses and the Israelites to keep the Ten Commandments and the various commands given under the Old Testament law. We today are living under the New Covenant law which Christ died to bring forth; though we have several of the old commandments in this law, we are not required to keep those given to the Israelites.
Thus, in whatever dispensation (period of time) we are living, we are required to keep the commandments given unto us.
Since we are not concerned with dispensations in this lesson, we will not study it. The subject upon which we want to place the most emphasis is that of obedience unto God. If we will just be obedient unto the commands of God we can expect to receive an eternal reward.
One of the best examples of obedience in the Bible is that of Christ, the Son of God. Jesus was obedient even to endure terrible sufferings for you and me. He was willing to be obedient to His Father though it meant much humiliation and sorrow. Hebrew 5:8 says, "Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered, and being made perfect He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obeyed Him."
Notice the last part of the statement: "He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obeyed Him." Some teach that we are saved by faith alone. The writer of Hebrews tells us that salvation is for those who “obey” Him. Therefore, we conclude that we must not only believe, but also obey His commandments if we expect to be saved.
Paul wrote and said, "And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels. In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power." (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9).
This passage teaches that those who "obey not the gospel" shall be punished. Hence obedience is necessary.
Another example which we should notice is the example of King Saul in the 1 Samuel chapter 15. Samuel told Saul that God wanted him to go down and utterly destroy the Amalekites; to kill every thing, man and woman, and child, and all the animals of the Amalekites. Saul went down and killed all the Amalekites but King Agag and part of the finest of the animals. When he came back he was telling about doing what God had told him to do and Samuel met him and asked him what the bleating of the sheep and the lowing of the cattle meant. Saul answered that they had brought them back for sacrifices. Samuel said, "Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifice as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams." (1 Samuel 15:22).
God is more concerned with us obeying His commands than in trying to worship Him in an unauthorized way. Let us not presume to know the will of God. Let us study and read the Bible more, so that we might be able to know that we are pleasing Him in what we do.
The Bible Teaches That …
1. WE MUST OBEY THE GOSPEL IN ORDER TO BE SAVED. As we have already learned, we must be obedient to the commands of the gospel if we expect to have remission of sins. Jesus commanded: "Go and preach the gospel to every creature, he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." (Mark 16:15-16)
Peter preached at Pentecost and said: "Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins." (Acts 2:38). These are commands to be obeyed. God does not expect us to obey all the commands but some of the commands in order for one to become a Christian. It is impossible for us to obey every commandment before we may become a Christian. We must obey these first commands if we expect ourselves to be saved.
The Bible Teaches That …
2. DISOBEDIENCE IS A TRAGIC THING. The disobedience of Adam and Eve brought sin into the world and death by sin. Not only did they bring death upon themselves, but upon us, and the beginning of many sorrows for mankind.
The disobedience of the Israelites kept most of them from ever entering the land of Canaan.
The disobedience of Ananias and Sapphira caused them to be struck down dead. (Acts 5:1-11).
Our disobedience will cause us to be lost. So, it behooves us to apply ourselves to the study of the Word of God and then obey the commands that are given to us. Let us not suppose that we can do anything to serve God just so long as we are honest and sincere. This will cause us to disobey Him and be lost.
Section 1 - Fill in the blanks.
Question 1 "Though he were a ______, yet learned he ______by the things which he _______; and being made _______, he became the author of _______ to all who ________ him."(Hebrews 5:8)
Question 2 "And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the _______ shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking ______ on them that ______, and that ______ of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with ______ from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power."
Section 2 - Fill in the blanks.
Question 1 God commanded ______ and ______ not to eat of the forbidden fruit.
Question 2 God commanded ______ to build an ark.
Question 3 God commanded ______ and the ______to keep the Ten Commandments.
Question 4 One of the best examples of obedience to God is that of ________.
Question 5 An example of disobedience is that of ________.
Section 3 - True or False
Question 1 Christ is the author of eternal salvation to all that obey Him.
Question 2 God shall render vengeance on them that obey not the gospel of Christ.
Question 3 King Saul was told to kill all of the Amalekites and their animals.
Question 4 King Saul obeyed the voice of God.
Question 5 To obey is better than sacrifice. (1 Samuel 15:22).
Question 6 God requires obedience from us.
Question 7 We need to study the Bible that we might know what to believe and what to obey.
Question 8 Disobedience is a tragic thing.
Question 9 Disobedience brought sin into the world.
Question 10 If we disobey, we shall be saved.
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