Throughout the Bible we see that the most important thing in life is to obey God's commandments. Sadly, most people do not know this, and even among the people who claim to be Christian, many do not believe this is so.
obedience is the key
We can see throughout scripture that the same is always true - obedience is the key to receiving the blessing of God. Following are a few examples.
Adam and Eve had few commands to keep:
Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Gen. 1:28, 2:16,17 NKJV)
When Israel formally became a nation, God gave them their own law to live by. It included over 600 commands, and it promised blessing if the people obeyed it:
“Behold, I set before you today a blessing and a curse: the blessing, if you obey the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you today; and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the LORD your God, but turn aside from the way which I command you today, to go after other gods which you have not known. (Dt. 11:26-28)
King Solomon, at the end of his life wrote:
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil. (Ecc. 12:13,14)
Jesus said that the two greatest commands of scripture are to love God and love people:
Jesus said to him, “ ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” (Mt. 22:37-40 NKJV; these were quotations from Dt. 6:5 and Lev. 19:18)
Jesus said that loving Him consists of obeying His commandments:
He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.” (John 14:21 NKJV)
The Apostle Paul wrote that what really counts in life is keeping the commands of God:
Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing, but keeping the commandments of God is what matters. (1 Cor. 7:19 NKJV)
The continual replacement
For thousands of years people have looked to the holy scriptures to understand what God requires of them. It has only been when people found that they didn't want to obey that they started trying to be clever and find excuses to not obey:
The Jews added so many
oral laws and traditions, that by the time Jesus came, it was hard for
people to sort out what was really important to God. The
religious leaders had devised a system that benefited themselves but
was impossible for anyone to succeed in being obedient. Thus,
Jesus rebuked the scribes and Pharisees harshly for their error.
His teaching and the teaching of his apostles became the new standard
In the 3rd century, people
from Alexandria began to combine Greek thought with scripture.
This clouded understanding for over a thousand years until the
Protestant Reformation, and the institutional church claimed to have
more authority than scripture. The reformers helped people place
scripture back in it's rightful position of highest authority.
In the 19th century
liberal-minded men began to avoid obedience by stating that the
majority of the accepted Greek New Testament texts used by the church
fathers were erroneous. From this developed all kinds of attack
on the scriptures, and many fell away from the true faith.
In the 20th century, unbelieving men began to say that that due to cultural changes in the 20th century certain commands of Jesus and the apostles no longer applied to the culture of today. Now, this view is taught in most seminaries, and disobedience is widespread. For example, in some countries, the divorce rate among Christians and non-Christians is about the same. Some churches even affirm fornicators and homosexuals despite what the Bible clearly teaches about these practices. The real authority is modern mass media, which is influenced by non-Christian thinkers. Few people who call themselves Christian congregate to learn how to obey. Following man-made rituals or seeking a happy experience are typically higher on the agenda.
Sound doctrine or lots of
Jesus and His followers knew these days were coming. The Apostle Paul wrote:
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. (2 Tim. 4:3,4 NKJV)
Rules of men or commands of
Just as in the time of Christ, Christians today are in danger of following the rules of men rather than the commands of God. Here's what Jesus said about that:
"Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ' This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men." (Mk. 7:6-8 NKJV)
Tolerance - the new queen
In the US, where the Bible was the foundation of the nation's legal system, people have a new queen: Tolerance. You can declare a man's motives to be evil, but you are politically incorrect if you declare his actions to be evil as the Bible does. The sad result is that even Christians are afraid to speak the truth and even more afraid to discipline other professing Christians who disobey moral commands. These people are themselves in danger, for Jesus said:
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ (Mt. 7:21-23 NKJV)
Is God a liar?
How would you feel if someone called you a liar? Would you want a relationship with that person? If God is a liar, whom can you trust? If God is not a liar, though, we need to take His Word seriously - that God meant what He said. If you do not believe that all of the Bible is God's revelation to man, then you are in great danger. Faith is commitment without knowing, and faith starts where reason ends. Believe in the Bible. Believe in Jesus. He is the Word of God. (Jn. 1:1,14)
This article is public
domain. It is the responsibility
of Theodore Spaeth.
It was last updated on 10 May 2015 .