Posts Tagged obedience

Set Your Mind on Christ Challenge – Day 3

I hope you’re hanging in there with the challenge. I’m sure enjoying all the rich lessons from immersing myself in Jesus this week. Be sure to leave your comments and questions. We’d love to hear how this is shaping you!

Observations:

  • Jesus’ ministry is constantly proclaiming good news with his mouth and being good news with his deeds.
  • Jesus expects that his people will obey him. This theme is relentless (6:46; 8:15, 21; 11:28).
  • Jesus has authority over nature (calming storm), legions of demons (the Demoniac), sickness (the woman with the issue of blood), and even death (Jairus’ daughter).
  • Following Jesus means following him into costly suffering (9:22-27, 57-62).
  • We should listen to Jesus, God’s Son (9:35)
  • Jesus equates following him with “proclaiming the kingdom of God” (9:60).
  • Jesus longs for kingdom workers to go to the harvest fields (10:2).
  • Loving our neighbor happens anytime his need meets our opportunity (10:25-37).
  • Our serving should not get in the way of our humble listening to Jesus (10:41-42).
  • Our prayer life should begin with adoring God’s fame and seeking first his kingdom, even before our needs (11:2).
  • God would love to give the Holy Spirit to those who ask (11:13).
  • Jesus cares more about the heart than the outward appearance (11:39-44).

How would I be different if this truth were explosively alive in my innermost being?

  • I would not only be willing to serve those in need, but eager to do so. Jesus seems eager to bless people, help them, and care for them. Even when the crowds get overwhelming or the need seems too great, he doesn’t get flustered. Rather, he helps them with grace and truth. May God make me a man who loves to serve!

What about you? How is God using this passage in your life? Questions or Comments?

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Set Your Mind on Christ Challenge – Day 2

Wow — there is so much great stuff in Luke 4-7! Lots of challenging truths and examples. It’s wonderful to just take a plunge into Jesus’ life, teaching, and ministry. Here are some of the ways this passage is encouraging me. Be sure to leave your comments and questions.

Observations:

  • Jesus was constantly led by the Holy Spirit (4:1, 14).
  • The word of God was soaked into Jesus life in a way that helped him overcome temptation (4:4, 8, 12).
  • Jesus’ ministry was holistic — he cared about the whole person’s life (4:18-19). This was reflected in his teaching, healing, and demon-outcasting.
  • Jesus taught and did ministry with unique authority (4:32; 7:7-8)
  • Jesus can and does forgive sin (5:23-24).
  • Wildly sinful people LOVED to be around Jesus (5:29).
  • Jesus bathed his big decisions in extensive prayer (6:12).
  • Jesus’ values were counter-cultural and upside down from the world (6:20-36).
  • Jesus expects us to obey him. To call him Lord and not obeying him would be ridiculous (6:46).
  • Jesus was so much fun to be around that he was accused of being a glutton and a drunk (7:34).
  • The natural response to radical grace is radical worship (7:47).

How would I be different if this truth were explosively alive in my innermost being?

  • The main thing that struck me here was the radical holiness of Jesus mixed with his incredible liveliness and fun. If this truth were explosively alive in my life, I would be deeply committed to personal holiness and godliness while also being lots of fun. It’s usually not hard to try to have fun, but it is harder to be radically holy. Then, when I am focused on holiness, it’s easy to get kind of stodgy, uptight, and overly serious. May God make me both holy and fun, so that extreme sinners would love being around me but would always sense an authentic commitment to costly obedience.

What about you? How is God using this passage in your life? Questions or Comments?

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Obedience Motivated by Affections for Jesus

Justin Taylor posted this excerpt from an interview with Matt Chandler, pastor of The Village Church in Texas.

Sanctification here at The Village begins by answering two questions. What stirs your affections for Jesus Christ? And what robs you of those affections? Many of the things that stifle growth are morally neutral. They’re not bad things. Facebook is not bad. Television and movies are not bad. I enjoy TV, but it doesn’t take long for me to begin to find humorous on TV what the Lord finds heartbreaking.The same goes for following sports. It’s not wrong, but if I start watching sports, I begin to care too much. I get stupid. If 19-year-old boys are ruining your day because of what they do with a ball, that’s a problem. These things rob my affections for Christ. I want to fill my life with things that stir my affections for him. . .

We want our people to think beyond simply what’s right and wrong. We want them to fill their lives with things that stir their affections for Jesus Christ and, as best as they can, to walk away from things that rob those affections—even when they’re not immoral.

You can read the whole thing here.

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The Growing Strength of Jesus

I was reading Wayne Grudem’s section on “The Person of Christ” from his book Bible Doctrine and I came across an amazing quote. Here Grudem is speaking about the how “Jesus learned obedience through what he suffered” (Heb 5:8). He writes:

Apparently as Jesus grew toward maturity he, like all other human children, was able to take on more and more responsibility. The older he became the more demands his father and mother could place on him in terms of obedience and the more difficult the tasks that his heavenly Father could assign to him to carry out in the strength of his human nature. With each increasingly difficult difficult task, even when it involved some suffering (as Heb 5:8 specifies), Jesus’ human moral ability, his ability to obey under more and more difficult circumstances increased. We might say that his “moral backbone” was strengthened by more and more difficult exercise. Yet in all this he never once sinned.

This made me think of two things. First, It’s a reminder of the biblical principle that those who are faithful to God in small things are entrusted with more opportunities of faithfulness. How many people I meet who want a lot of ministry or responsibility yet are not even being faithful in the things God has put in front of them now! May we be faithful in even the smallest and most mundane of life situations.

Second, this made me think about how enduring temptation without sin strengthens you to endure more temptation without sin, just like doing difficult exercise prepares you to do even more difficult exercise. The more we say “no” to ungodliness and sin, the more able to say “no” to those things when the pressure is even greater.

All of this makes me thankful that I have a Savior who was PERFECTLY obedient and never gave in, despite facing temptations much stronger and intense than I ever have. In my moments of weakness I can gather strength from this Savior and, when I fail, I can receive forgiveness and grace.

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