From the Pastors Desk
Jul19FriJuly 19, 2019 Pastor Byron Hand
Heart Posture One - Approach your Bible Prayerfully
Heart Posture Two - Approach your Bible Humbly
Heart Posture Three - Approach your Bible Desperately
Heart Posture Four - Approach your Bible Studiously
This week, heart posture five, Approach your Bible Obediently. It almost sounds robotic or cold doesn’t it? We are told to obey our parents. Obey our teachers. Obey the Police officer. Obey the traffic signs. Obey the coach. Obey our governing authorities.
Obey, obey, obey. You may be thinking I have plenty of obligations already, thank you very much.
Tim Keller in his book “Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work” provides an enlightening illustration about obedience and the importance of obedience for the believer:
Modern people like to see freedom as the complete absence of any constraints. But think of a fish. Because a fish absorbs oxygen from water, not air, it is free only if it is restricted to water. If a fish is “freed” from the river and put out on the grass to explore, its freedom to move and soon even to live is destroyed. The fish is not more free, but less free, if it cannot honor the reality of its nature. The same is true with airplanes and birds. If they violate the laws of aerodynamics, they will crash into the ground. But if they follow them, they will ascend and soar. The same is true in many areas of life: Freedom is not so much the absence of restrictions as finding the right ones, those that fit with the realities of our own nature and those of the world.
So the commandments of God in the Bible are a means of liberation, because through them God calls us to be what he built us to be … the fish was built for water and the bird for air, so you were built for God – And you will not find true life and freedom anywhere else.”
“Biblical obedience is not about keeping an arbitrary set of rules, it’s about living in accordance with our design, in harmony with our maker.” Our God wants us to flourish, because of that He may restrict us in order to truly set us free. Smethurst states insightfully:
“He prohibits us to drive us to what is good. He lays boundaries with hands of love.”
Check out Deuteronomy 10:12-13:
12 “And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, 13 and to keep the commandments and statutes of the Lord, which I am commanding you today for your good?”
Notice the rapid-fire requirements:
- 1) Fear
- 2) Walk
- 3) Love
- 4) Serve
- 5) Obey
These function like links in a chain, or distinct notes in the musical score of our life. God is interested in our actions and in our attitudes. Feet, hands, minds, hearts --- He wants it all.
There is one last phrase in Deuteronomy 10 that I hope we don’t miss. It’s the last three words of verse 13 – “For your Good.” We approach our bibles obediently “for our own good.” These words revolutionize bible study.
Why does God make these all-encompassing claims on our lives today? It is because He deserves our obedience. WE were made for obedience, like fish for water and birds for air.
The God who created this universe calls us to lives of obedience to His revealed will in His word. We are going to finish this chapter next week. Let me leave you with an awesome quote that drives home the importance of obediently approaching our Bibles:
“He loves you too much to leave you in charge of an existence you didn’t design. Just as there are physical laws like gravity built into creation, there are moral laws you were born to honor. A Disobedient believer makes no more sense than a disenchanted bird trying to reach the ocean floor. In infinite wisdom and goodness, God has structured His moral universe in a particular way. We can trust Him. If we refuse, we won’t just be breaking his laws; we’ll be breaking ourselves against them.”
We will pick up where we left off next week …. See You Sunday