God is at work all the time in the whole universe, in this world on Earth and in each individual’s life, His holy purposes to fulfil. His are wonderful works of amazing grace; we observe and testify again and again in so many lives and instances!
Significantly, His Holy Spirit is constantly working among Christ’s blood-bought people in the Church to accomplish the Father’s glorious plans for a blessed eternity. Our responses to His promptings and workings constitute our efforts in spiritual growth as we obey God’s Word. For example, we are called to “make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.” 2 Peter 1:5-7
Such obedience to God’s Word that contains His will is the authentic proof of our faith, for faith without works or deeds is indeed dead (James 2:14-26).
Hence our Lord Jesus Christ teaches us at the conclusion of His Sermon on the Mount: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 7:21)
And He further implies that doing the Father’s will is actually putting His words into practice as He likens one who does so to a wise man who builds his house on the rock and can withstand the stormy blasts of life, especially the very trying times of these last days before being ushered finally into God’s eternal kingdom.
The bottom line of salvation for Christ’s disciples, therefore, is doing God’s will, as the apostle John records for us in 1 John 2:17,“And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.”
Amy Carmichael puts it this way:
“All that pleases is but for a moment;
All that grieves is but for a moment;
Only the eternal is important.”
Doing God’s will has eternal value.
What then is God’s will? The apostle Paul spells it out simply in 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4 – “For this is the will of God, your sanctification:that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honour”.
Indeed, Hebrews 12:14 tells us that without holiness no one can see God. Our sanctification is in fact a preparatory process for our eternal habitation in heaven with God. During this process we are to rejoice always, pray unceasingly and give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
God is the ultimate judge of whether we have lived our lives according to His will or not.
He searches the heart and examines the mind to reward each person according to his conduct andto what his deeds deserve. Jeremiah 17:10; Psalm 62:12 and Revelation 2:23 provide sobering reminders for us to live God-fearing lives.
“For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing whether it is good or evil.” Ecclesiastes 12:14. Moreover, our Lord Jesus also warns us that we will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word spoken, “for by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:36-37.
May we truly repent of all our careless words and deeds and “be all the more eager to make our calling and election sure” so that we“will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:10-11.
“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.” 2 Corinthians 5:10. (c.f Romans 14:10-12).
No wonder the apostle Paul exhorts us to continue to work out our salvation with fear and trembling! Let us abandon all unworthy goals of carnal and sensual gratification and seek God’s blessed will to do day by day with the help of His Holy Spirit. Our joy will then be full as the Lord will be pleased!
By Mrs Leong King Teng (YCKC Bulletin 27&28 February 2016)