Since God Has Spoken: Obedience

God is not silent. He has spoken. Jesus promised the apostles that “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come” (Jn 16:13). The Holy Spirit then inspired or breathed out God’s words through them (2 Tim. 3:16). This process, although the human mind and thought was present, was continually guided and guarded by the Holy Spirit. These “spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” The Bible records God’s words.

Since God has spoken and still speaks through the Scriptures, Christians should seek to submit to the Scriptures to the best of their ability. Perfection will never be attained by even the most devoted Christian (Rom. 7:21-24). Still, the zealous Christian’s incapability of perfection does not excuse the pursuit of perfection (Matt. 5:48). Salvation is made possible through Christ and is received as a gift (Eph. 2:8-10; Rom. 8:1-4), but that does not excuse a saved person from the pursuit of holiness in precision obedience.

This pursuit of precise obedience is shaped by the Scripture. Paul said, “If anyone thinks that he is a prophet, or spiritual, he should acknowledge that the things I am writing to you are a command of the Lord. If anyone does not recognize this, he is not recognized” (1 Cor. 14:37-38). Since the things written in Scripture are the commands of God, Christians should want to do precisely as God has directed. Paul warned, “If anyone does not obey what we say in this letter, take note of that person, and have nothing to do with him, that he may be ashamed. Do not regard him as an enemy, but warn him as a brother” (2 Thess. 3:14-15).

Obviously, no Christian will ever achieve perfection. However, that inability does not diminish the Christian responsibility to pursue holiness without which no one will see the Lord (Heb. 12:14). This holiness is the result of sanctification (Heb. 10:14), but the Christian’s holiness is also related to the Christian’s behavior (1 Pet. 1:15). Since God has spoken, Christians strive to render precision obedience to the Lord. This precision obedience is required by those who have been the recipients of grace.

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