Listen for GOD’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track.
- Proverbs 3:6 (The Message)
In 1 Kings 13 we read about a man of God from Judah, who prayed for king Jeroboam’s hand so that it should be restored, and God healed it. Jeroboam then offered that the man of God should go with him to his house so that he could bless him with some refreshments and a reward. But the man of God couldn’t do it for it was not part of the instructions he received from God. God instructed him to not eat, drink or go back the same way that he came. So, the man of God left and went on another way just as God instructed him. On his way back, the man of God rested under an oak tree and there came to him an old prophet from Bethel who invited him to go with him to his house to eat and drink. Again, the man of God said to the old prophet that he couldn’t do it for God had not instructed him to do it, but the old prophet continued by saying that the angel of the Lord told him that the man of God should go to his house to eat and drink. But the old prophet was lying to the man of God. The man of God was convinced, so they went to the old prophet’s house where they ate and drank water. Then God spoke through the old prophet, saying that the man of God has not been obedient to the Lord’s instructions and his corpse shall not go to the tomb of the man of God’s fathers. The man of God left and, on his way back he was killed by a lion.
In reading this and seeing what happened to the man of God we feel sorry for him and almost want to say, “You know, it’s just one mistake; give the man of God a second chance.” But it is clear that there was absolutely no grey area when it came to obeying the instructions of the Lord in that time. Obedience was everything in the old covenant. If you failed in doing your part, there was also a serious consequence and there was nothing you could do to escape the outcome.
Do you realise that we are not living under that old agreement anymore? Can we settle this once and for all that we will not come under a curse today, if we do not obey the voice of God or if we make a mistake? I can boldly declare this because Jesus became a curse for us (Galatians 3:13) and Jesus paid the price for our disobedience. We also don’t have to do something right in order to experience the blessings of God. Now that we live after the cross, God is no longer deciding whether he wants to bless us or not. He already blessed us in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3). We are now in a new and better agreement with God. We are free to follow the voice of God/the promptings of the Holy Spirit, without thinking that something bad will happen to us if we fail to do so. The new is not do good, get good, do bad, get bad…The NEW is believe and get good.
By faith we receive the benefits that came through the cross of Christ and His obedience to His Father!
Faith is obedience – living in obedience to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, knowing that He is leading us into a greater experience of His goodness. The other side of faith is this: believing that we will receive GOOD even when we failed to obey Him, because we are able to believe in and receive His mercy and grace. Think about it…
This is wonderful, thank you Jesus, glory to God! We are free to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit and can only expect to see His goodness manifested more and more in our daily lives!
OBEY JESUS, HE LOVES YOU!