Sunday, October 3, 2010

Luke 6:46 - Part II – As Christians, we are to obey His commands

Why do you call me, “Lord, Lord” and do not do what I say? (Luke 6:46)

The sister went on to say that in the past she did not know that following Jesus was not about “doing” the laws, and that she did get confused between obedience to God and “doing” the laws. She said there did not seem to be any difference to her.

In part I, we ended with such saying, “Sure, it is possible to be like what the Lord has remarked in the above verse, that there are those among us who just call Him, Lord, Lord, but do not do what He say or said”. The consequence of that was allegorically depicted by the Lord in one’s attempt to build a house, one, on the foundation of His Lordship, and another, without {such} foundation; one will stand, the other, a wash-out, when water of testing comes.

Doing laws? Obey His commands
So now, is following Jesus about “doing” the laws? Now, if the “doing the laws”, here, means obeying the commands of God, then, yes! To be a Christian is to live a life in obedience to the commands of God or to live a life in submission to His Lordship. As a Christian, if you are not going to live your life that way, then you should not be surprised when the Lord poses Luke 6:46 to you. To me, the allegory of Jesus is referring to our homes, our homes or, no homes, in Heaven! If I be very blunt about it, if you are not going to live out your life in submission to His Lordship, it is possible you will have no home waiting for you in Heaven, even though you thought you have one built.

Luke 6:46 is to be taken seriously
My advice for people, not that I have arrived, is not to reason away Luke 6:46 and the allegory of Jesus that followed it. Do not listen to people who say that salvation has nothing to do with Lordship of God, or think out all kinds of excuses, including grace, etc, etc, to say that it is alright if the commands of God are not followed so long as one has accepted Jesus as his Savior. I too find it difficult to obey some of the commands of God, but still it does not necessarily mean that obeying the commands of God is not the thing to do. The spirit must be one, of us submitting to the Lordship of God. There might be isolated failures which we have to ask for forgiveness from the Lord, but we must endeavor to live in submission to His Lordship.

To obey God is to obey His commands
Again referring to the sister’s remark, does obeying God imply obeying his commands? Yes, but if you find it very difficult to obey a certain command of God, you can talk to God. God is not legalistic, but the spirit should be that we are to obey Him and His commands.

New lens – obey out of love
The word, “transformation” has become such a catchy jargon that it is used in all sorts of settings to talk about changes that are to take place in the hearts and minds of believers concerning many matters, but it was rarely used to point to what God said concerning how we should view the obedience to his commands. Jesus said those who love Him obey His commands, and those who obey His commands are the ones who love Him. This is the transformation that we must catch; we have to change our mindset in our viewing of obedience to God’s commands. From obeying out of fear, we are to change to obeying out of love for God. Our submission to His Lordship should be, out of love, and not out of fear. When the obeying and the submission are out of love, it will cause lasting change in us. If it is out of fear, when the “stick” is taken away, the attitude disappears. If it is out of love, with or without the “stick”, the attitude remains. God first loves us. How can we love Him back? Obey Him and His commands, is one sure way!

No, No, No, …
Is it alright for one to disobey God or to sin, just because Jesus had already died for us, and His work was completed; and all our sins have been forgiven of us at our born-again? The answer is no. It is not alright. At our born-again, our FUTURE SINS, relative to the time of born-again, were NOT yet forgiven, simply because it had not happen. It is reading words into Scripture to say that our FUTURE SINS were already forgiven. Jesus’ blood was capable of cleansing future sins, but it does not necessary mean that at our born-again, the blood of Jesus cleansed at that moment, even the sins of our future, relative to the born-again moment. Subsequently, when we, believers, sin, we just have to practice 1 John1:9. We are not made perfect at born again, that we are incapable of subsequent sinning. It is a lie that 1 John 1:9 is not believers; and those believers who think that they have not sinned subsequent to conversion is calling God a liar. I encourage readers to read my separate article on “1 John 1:9 is for believers” to correctly understand that indeed 1 John 1:9 is for believers.

Godly sorrow leads to repentance
That we have been reconciled to God at born-again through the work done by Jesus on the Cross, does that mean that everything is alright between God and a believer? Yes. Then does it mean that a believer is no longer condemned, and his guilt has been removed from him? Yes, at his born-again, when he was forgiven and cleansed of his sins. What if he sins after his born-again, does he become condemned, and be guilty? Unless you can find Scripture saying that a sin by a believer is not a sin, and the wages of sin is not the same as that of a sin before born-again, a sin brings on condemnation, and rightly that believer is guilty and should be sorrowful for it. It is a lie that a believer is not condemned on sinning, not guilty, should not feel guilty, and ought not be sorrowful about what he is doing or has just done. The Apostle Paul said in his epistle to the Corinthians brethrens (2 Cor 7), that believers ought to be sorrowful for sins they had done. In fact, Paul was saying that he did not regret his letter caused them sorrow, because godly sorrow was to bring on repentance. If you ignore godly sorrow, or numb it again and again (and that includes the pricking of your conscience by the Holy Spirit), you will not repent, and when you do not repent, and will not ask for forgiveness, how are you going to be forgiven, and the condemnation from the sin be lifted you?

Please, a sin is a sin
Are you insisting that God had forgiven you of your FUTURE sins, and therefore, there is no consequence to whatsoever sin that you may commit now or in the future? Is sin not a sin anymore? Where is it written in Scripture? Or are you expecting the blood of Jesus to operate like an auto-wipe anti-virus program for the believers, the very moment you commit a sin, it is automatically wiped off you! These are presumptuous interpretations of Scripture. Scripture only said that Jesus died more than 2000 years ago, yet his blood is available and capable of cleansing of the sins of any future person, relative to Jesus’ death and resurrection. Died once but propitiation is available for appropriations into future. People should stop saying a believer is persecuting Jesus all over again if he feels condemned or guilty. No, Jesus died once and was persecuted before His death and resurrection; even if you want it He will not die again or be persecuted anymore. This cannot be used to justify the position that one should not be sorrowful about his un-confessed sins, on the pretext that, that would persecute Jesus all over again. He should only not feel condemned, guilty or sorrowful if he has confessed his sins, as in 1 John 1:9. It is right to explain to such believers who had confessed, that they are not to feel that way {guilty, condemned}, but it is surely NOT right to tell believers that they should not feel condemned, guilty and sorrowful when they are indeed in sin, and have NOT wanted to confess or ask forgiveness. At times, we should not be too harsh to people, but surely reinforcing the “it is alright to do wrong/sin” mentality is NOT acceptable.

Our God is a holy God, be holy as He is holy
Brother Anthony, you mean I have to do it {confession} again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and …? You don’t like that, then, refrain from sinning. You don’t like it, but Scripture said the Holy Spirit is grieved (by your sinning). If you say you love God, stop grieving His Spirit. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH TRYING. We should not dissuade people from trying to be better, rather we should persuade it, and exhort it. Satan will tell you to forget about trying, that it is too difficult; do not fall for it! We are all on a journey, we do fall, but we are to get up, and when we fall again, we get up again, and whether we are up or down, we are to help others along, not discourage them, on the Highway of Holiness. Those who are interested to know where Scripture talked about this Highway, and my exposition thereof, read my separate article, “Way of Holiness”.

Anthony Chia, high.expressions – Lord, I will try, and try, and try, because it is my love for you.

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