This is the new topic this month and it’s a hard one. Many people who hear the word obedience will think of a dog. We train dogs to sit, come, go, fetch and so on. That’s what we think of (myself included!) when we hear this word.
Do you think that God’s up there going Sit!, Lay Down!, Fetch! That the Master calls out commands and Christians are just supposed to be puppets doing what He tells us to do?
I don’t think so. The choice is ours. That is the point. We still have free will in all that we do. God actually made us this way. He doesn’t want puppets, he wants followers.
I just put obedience in BibleGateway.com and a whole big list of scripture comes up. Yes, the scripture tells us to be obedient to the will of God. So now we have to think, What is the Will of God? That’s when we go back to the Word of God: the Bible.
“Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?” Romans 6:16 So if we want to walk in God’s Will, we need to be like obedient slaves. We can be a slave to sin or a slave to God. But there are more scripture that outlines it for us. “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:29-30 We can take up the offer that Jesus holds out for us, to take up His Yoke. Imagine this: you see those old photos with oxen pulling a cart. There is this big piece of wood riding across their shoulders. That’s the yoke holding the oxen together so that they can share the weight of the load. To be yoked with Jesus in our lives would mean that He is taking the larger portion. We can drop the worry and fretting. His yolk is easy and light. Who wouldn’t want to go through life like that?
So to be obedient we need to obey his commandments. Jesus gave that to us in Matthew 22:36-39 when he was asked:
“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’