Obedience & truth

Jon Cressey
Jon Cressey
Obedience & truth

obedience 1Don’t be surprised if you hear prophetic exhortation to obey the Lord with gladness, right in the middle of difficult times or circumstances.

It is normal to hear the call for ‘burning heart’ obedience, but there is also a passion that the prophetic needs to inflame for grace. God always gives grace to the humble and opposes the proud.

Prophets must lead the way by demonstrating obedient hearts saturated with God’s grace.

Lots of rhetoric but how do we work this out? Prophetic ministry has the capacity to see the bigger picture and have a sense of purpose about God’s plans or activity in the Church calling them to hope or repentance. (“For the Lord GOD does nothing without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets”. Amos 3:7)

Christians believe that the Bible is clear enough to understand it in order to follow its commands. However, even if we all agree that the Bible is God’s Word to humanity that reveals His glory and His will for us, we must also say that the Bible is often a difficult revelation to interpret.

To Jesus, everything revolved around obedience. In His relationship with the Father, obedience was all: “I do always do the things that please Him.” (John 8:29) As for us, it’s the same: “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord’ and do not do the things I tell you?” (Luke 6:46)

Trust & Obey…

This song gives a simple, clear explanation of living the Christian life. The title expression was used in a testimony meeting, following an evangelistic crusade in Brockton, Massachusetts, by Dwight L. Moody. A young man stood to speak, and it soon became clear he knew little Christian doctrine. But he finished by saying, “I’m not quite sure – but I’m going to trust, and I’m going to obey.”

Daniel Towner, who was in the meeting, jotted down the words, and gave them to John Sammis, who developed the lyrics from them.

When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word,
What a glory He sheds on our way!
While we do His good will, He abides with us still,
And with all who will trust and obey.

Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

Not a shadow can rise, not a cloud in the skies,
But His smile quickly drives it away;
Not a doubt or a fear, not a sigh or a tear,
Can abide while we trust and obey.

Not a burden we bear, not a sorrow we share,
But our toil He doth richly repay;
Not a grief or a loss, not a frown or a cross,
But is blessed if we trust and obey.

But we never can prove the delights of His love
Until all on the altar we lay;
For the favor He shows, for the joy He bestows,
Are for them who will trust and obey.

Then in fellowship sweet we will sit at His feet.
Or we’ll walk by His side in the way.
What He says we will do, where He sends we will go;
Never fear, only trust and obey.

The issue of obedience being a focus of the prophetic ministry is an easy one to understand. Doing it is another thing, but what of the issue of grace? How do obedience and grace find themselves partnered here? The answer is a liberating and encouraging one.

Grace leads us to a heart condition where we walk in obedience to God, not because the command is set before us, but because we want to do the things the please Him.

It is an attitude in complete antithesis to Gen 6:5-6; “The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

Some say that the shortest verse in the scripture, Jesus wept (John 11:35), is the saddest, but I think the next verse of this portion in Genesis takes the title;

“And the LORD was sorry that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart”.

Prophetic ministry calls the Church to walk in God’s grace in obedience.

We don’t want His heart to be grieved with us. We want to obey Him with hearts full of faith, love and joy – all as a fruit of His astonishing grace.

God is good.

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