Tuesday, February 07, 2006

WordPoints - February 7, 2006

For the Purpose of Obedience

The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things
which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever,
that we may do all the words of this law.
Deuteronomy 29:29

God's word is not given to us for the purpose of idle speculation, but for the purpose of obedience. We misappropriate the truth God has revealed when we make it merely the grist for intellectual debate. The greater design of the Scriptures -- requiring more effort and promising a richer reward -- is to provide the practical materials for building a better, more obedient life. When we study, we ought to be looking for this "obeyable" information. To study for any other reason is actually dangerous.

In the matter of obedience, one problem is that we delay obeying what we've learned from the Scriptures because we can't see as far down the theoretical road ahead as we'd like. Perhaps we don't fully understand why God would require such a thing as the Scriptures have indicated. Or it may not be clear to us what the consequences would be if we took God at His word. Or we may not see how this or that act of obedience fits into the overall scheme of God's will. There is no shortage of obstacles, more or less theoretical in nature, that can stymie the serious student who wants not only to obey, but to understand what is being done. The irony of growth, however, is that understanding comes from moving ahead with our obedience, rather than holding back. In any case, "understanding can wait, obedience cannot."

But another problem related to obedience is that we often delay doing our duty until we feel that we can get it just right. We may think we need to make more progress in the realm of spiritual theory before we can do very well in the realm of spiritual practice. And so we linger in our many abstractions, seeking the strength we need for obedient living. Yet satisfying spiritual progress lies down the clear road of honest obedience to what we presently know is right, not the winding path of theoretical curiosities. We can't seek God without using our minds to the best of our ability, it is true. But neither can we find God without carrying out what our minds have learned already.

The really important thing in life is not the avoidance of mistakes, but the
obedience of faith. By obedience, the man is led step by step to correct his
errors, whereas nothing will ever happen to him if he doesn't get going.
Paul Tournier
Copyright © 2006 by Gary Henry - Visit the WordPoints web site: www.wordpoints.com


Gary Henry said...

Hi Anne. Gary Henry (WordPoints) here. Thanks for sharing the daily devotionals with your readers. I'm greatly encouraged by your kind words. Let me know if I can ever be of any personal service to you or your readers. Reaching forward, Gary.

Anne said...

Hi Mr. Henry! Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment on my blog. I truly enjoy your work and am thankful the Lord is working through you to further the Truth of the Gospel.

Badoozie said...

OMG. you got visited by the AUTHOR. YOU ROCK. will you sign my shirt? or something? I am so impressed.

and to think i was going to comment on this word point, and now i can't remember what i was going to say!
i have to go back and read it again. i've lost my train of thought

Badoozie said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Badoozie said...

okay, here's what i liked about this point. Sometimes when I read, i get caught up in interpreting what I read as how it applies to so and so that is currently mistreating me or someone i know. I use the word to beat people up, in my own mind. So this really hit me. That when you read, how you get ministered to by the word depends on your frame of mind when reading.

anne, i missed you! i'm glad you're back and posting wordpoints. now i'm off to visit mr Henry!!

Badoozie said...

he doesnt have a blog just a profile. did you email him?

Anne said...

Suzie Badoozie - I'm pretty sure he did a search and my blog popped up with his WordPoints. He probably signed on only to post a comment. I have e-mailed him in the past and he promptly responds.

I have his book "Diligently Seeking God" and I get these devotionals via e-mail each day. You should go to his sight and sign up for the e-mails since I don't post them every day.

Badoozie said...

hey dum dum, thats why i come to your blog. don't tell me the secrets. just make me think i have to come here to see them.

Anne said...

I thought you came here because you loved me.