Saturday, March 19, 2016

Nothing Going Right?

There are benefits to living in obedience to Jesus. There are consequences for living in rebellion to Jesus. This is a basic fact that has been true since the beginning of creation. All Yahweh wanted from Adam and Eve was their love, and love means obedience; Jesus taught us that, in case it wasn't clear. Adam had one rule to follow: Don't eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. One rule and he could not maintain obedience.

Just outside of the Promised Land, Yahweh gave some final instructions to Israel before he took Moses from them. He made it clear to them that his intention was to bless them beyond imagining so that he would be glorified through them. They would become the greatest nation. All they had to do was be entirely devoted to him, obey his instructions. He also made it clear that if they entered into rebellion against him there would be consequences; the blessings would be reversed, and everything that had been promised against their enemies would happen to them. Nothing would go right for them, even if they worked hard.

Jesus gave us many promises but he wanted to make it perfectly clear for us that only those who loved Yahweh with all they had would be considered as part of him. He was loving us with all that he had and the relationship required the same from us. The manifestation of love in our lives is obedience and anything less is a pale version of love.

Our Father's great passion is an eternal relationship with us. He paid the price for our admission and he continues to pursue those who have rejected him. He also brings correction for those who say they are his children and yet continue to rebel against him. You know who you are. We are all in that number from time to time, but he loves us enough to correct us.

This should be a good warning to us when suddenly nothing is going right, no matter how hard we are working. If everything is failing you need to examine your relationship with Jesus and your actions. If you have become distracted or perhaps enslaved by a particular sin, prosperity and success will be halted to bring your attention to this fact. It isn't a lack of love but the fact that he values eternity with us over blessings on this earth. His intention is for us to have both but he will remove the one to ensure the other.

The Scriptures explain it this way:

Bear hardship for the sake of discipline. God is treating you like sons and daughters! What child isn’t disciplined by his or her father? But if you don’t experience discipline, which happens to all children, then you are illegitimate and not real sons and daughters. (Hebrews 12:7-8)

This same passage also tells us that no one enjoys correction but we should be mature enough to understand the benefits:

No discipline is fun while it lasts, but it seems painful at the time. Later, however, it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness for those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:11)

If you are in rebellion, have become disobedient or even distant from Jesus, stop it. Repent and get back to walking in his righteousness. His great desire is to bless you so the Father will be glorified through the blessings he will pour through you. He loves you enough to correct you, so understand what is happening in your life today.

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