Thursday, September 3, 2009

God's Ultimate Will

Focus verses: Ezekiel 33:1-20

Today's reading talks about responsibility. There is a responsibility for the individual. There is a responsibility for the watchman (or teacher or preacher - they are almost the same thing).

The watchman is responsible to sound the alarm. For those who heed the alarm, there is safety. For those who choose to ignore the alarm, there is judgment.

That judgment is the natural consequence of the action of the person being judged. God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to the saving knowledge of His Son, Jesus.

That may be why God waits so long for all to come to Him. He gives the people chance after chance to change their wicked ways and turn to Him in obedience.

He knows that our obedience to Him will create the best life possible for us. He has our best interest at heart as much as we do. But he has an unfair advantage. He is omniscient. He knows everything, past - present - future.

We don't have that advantage. Therefore when we make choices based solely on our own knowledge, we'll often miss the mark. If we make choices after submitting them to God in prayer, we have a much better chance of going where we want to go and accomplishing what we want to accomplish. Especially if we've been listening carefully to His answer.

The disobedience of a formerly righteous man is his undoing. And the obedience of the formerly wicked man is his salvation. (Remember we are in the Old Testament here.) Obedience is the acknowledgment of our trust in God and belief that He knows best in all things.

When we come to New Testament time, that obedience is the outward reflection of our trust in Jesus Christ. When James says "Faith without works is dead" he means that lip service faith is not enough.

Father, God,

Strengthen our faith into works. Help us to be so fully grounded in Your will that there is no question about our actions. Make everything we do and say point to Your sovereignty and magnanimity.
In Jesus' most precious name.

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