This is Important – Christians are Wrong If…

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I had one of those moments recently when I realized Christians are wrong when... We say it right, but do it wrong. Obedience.

I had one of those moments recently when I realized Christians are wrong when…

We say it right, but do it wrong.

What’s it?

Obedience.

Why do you obey God? Okay, maybe a better question is why do you try to obey God?

  • To please Him?
  • To earn His favor?
  • To look good at church?
  • To feel good about yourself?
  • So “it will go well for you?”
  • All of the above?

God promises it will go well for those who obey Him, but that should not be our motive.

Why?

Because everything on that list of reasons are ME focused!

As I read in Deuteronomy the other day, the following words practically jumped off the page:

“I have taught you all the laws, as the Lord my God told me to do. Obey them in the land that you are about to invade and occupy. Obey them faithfully, and this will show the people of other nations how wise you are. When they hear of all these laws, they will say, ‘What wisdom and understanding this great nation has!’

No other nation, no matter how great, has a god who is so near when they need Him as the Lord our God is to us. He answers us whenever we call for help. No other nation, no matter how great, has laws so just as those that I have taught you today. Deuteronomy 4:5–8

We are not supposed to obey to show who we are . . . we are to obey to show who God is.

Not to show that we are good, but to show that He is good and loving.

Not to show that we are better than those who don’t obey, but to show that His ways are best. Commands that tell us to treat others with respect, compassion, and love. 

Not to show that what the Bible says is right, but to show that God’s commands are perfect. Commands that show His perfect love has the power to change hearts and lives.

[Tweet “We don’t obey to show who we are . . . we obey to show who God is.”]

Based on the Deuteronomy verses above, considered “Law,” obeying shows who God is. That He gives wisdom and understanding and is near and just.

I had one of those moments recently when I realized Christians are wrong when... We say it right, but do it wrong. Obedience.

Obedience glorifies God!

It’s not about you. It’s not about me. It’s not about theology or doctrine.

It’s about God. It’s about glorifying the One who loves you so much He died to show you.

Friends we need to take ourselves out of the equation. If we could begin to obey God to show His love, if we could lead with our hearts, if we could obey out of love to show love . . . it would change everything.

No more judgmental pride.

No more obeying to be accepted.

Simply . . . coming to Jesus.

Come to me, all of you who are tired from carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke and put it on you, and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit; and you will find rest. Matthew 11:28–29

Jesus said, “Let the children come to me and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14

Then going where He leads with obedience.

It’s not about us, about rules, about judgment, about fitting in or doing it right.

It’s about doing everything with great love.

His love!

Showing we love Him by loving others. Showing His love and reflecting His glory—that is obedience.

I had one of those moments recently when I realized Christians are wrong when... We say it right, but do it wrong. Obedience.

Friend, any other reason for obedience is just wrong.

“Do you feel loved by God because you believe He makes much of you, or because you believe He frees you and empowers you to enjoy making much of Him?” ~John Piper

Ever since I first heard of your strong faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for God’s people everywhere, I have not stopped thanking God for you. Ephesians 1:15–16

“To do even the most humbling tasks to the glory of God takes the Almighty God Incarnate working in us.” Oswald Chambers”

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22 Comments

  1. It is all too easy to let our focus drift from God to us. This is truly a wake-up call today, Deb, one I know I needed to hear.
    Blessings!

  2. Well said Deb. A lot of obedience is solely based on “how well I look” and “how much He loves me more because I am obedient.” As you state, that misses the point.

    1. It’s a hard one to remember. We want everything to be about us. Oh to faithfully obey simply to love and glorify. It’s just not about me. At least that’s my prayer.

  3. Oh Deb! You always seem to have a message just for me. I hear you heart in every post. This one is so revealing to me. Thank you for shining the light on the dark spots so we can see things clearly. ♥

    1. Oh Celi, Your kind encouragement is a huge blessing. Thank you so much! God bless you!

  4. My constant prayer lately has been “Less of me. More of Him.” Obedience has to be about Him. Jesus, only Jesus. Thanks BarbaraAnn. Blessings to you!

  5. Janis Cox says:

    This lesson has been shown to me these past few weeks as well. Drop myself. Oh that is so hard to do – I am so much with me. 🙂 But I am trying.
    Following you from Embracing His Will.
    Blessings,
    Janis

  6. You’ve really hit on an important distinction here, and I think that getting this point on obedience can change a person’s reading of Scripture and walk with God. I’m trying to be very conscious of this whenever I teach — our obedience is our gift to God, it is a RESULT of His working in us, and it is for His glory alone.

    1. I agree Michele. It is about living to give Him glory not to receive it ourselves. It’s so hard when pride and society fight against that with everything its got. Whew! I just keep praying to keep my heart and mind focused on Jesus. Thanks for sharing your thoughts here. Blessings to you!

  7. Angela Parlin says:

    Well said, Deb! Obedience is to glorify God…it’s not about us. I appreciate this encouragement and teaching today…thanks for sharing it with us at #RaRaLinkup!

  8. bluecottonmemory says:

    As we move closer and closer into God, I think our motives for “doing right” align up with doing right out of love. There’s such truth in your post – it breaks the love factor down with such grace!

    1. Thank you so much for your encouragement. My constant prayer is to speak truth with grace. I can turn into a fist pounder at a moments notice, and I find it harder to “shine” when I ranting. 🙂 Blessings to you!

  9. Kristin Taylor says:

    “We are not supposed to obey to show who we are . . . we are to obey to show who God is.” –> Wow. This is really something to think about! Thanks for sharing this at #ThreeWordWednesday.

    1. Thank you Kristin! Praying your celebration of His gift of love are blessed this weekend!

  10. MaMarierie says:

    I love this statement “Obedience Glorifies God!” Goes along with my life verse – Matt 5:16 – letting my light shine!!

    1. Great life verse Marie! Thanks for sharing it here! Blessings to you!

  11. Great post, Deb! I’ve struggled for most of my Christian life to “walk before (God) faithfully and be blameless” (Genesis 17:1). But recently, I’ve found that the closer I get to God, the more I want to know Him, the easier that walk is. As my love for God grows, my desire to do His will and obey grows too. I think this is perfectly aligned with Matthew 6:33 and Psalm 37:4, because (I think) as we focus on God and draw near to God, our desires change. We no longer desire so many material things but desire God’s will. We change from “keeping up with the Joneses” to “keeping up with Jesus.”

    1. Thank you Colin! I agree the closer walk helps. When I am more connected to God I want Him to receive the glory. Of course it can still be hard to get my ego out of the way. It’s something I pray about often. May your celebration of His grace this weekend be filled with blessings.

  12. Christine says:

    Thanks for this inspiring post, Deb! You are so right that our obedience should be because of our LOVE for God. I can’t help but be reminded of Jesus’ example of being obedient to God the Father! In LOVE, Jesus came to earth as one of us, and being obedient to God, He willingly died a criminal death….death on a cross….all in obedience to God! That is powerful and a great example for us too. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Letetia Mullenix says:

    I have been meaning to get to this post for 2 weeks! I saw the title and knew I was going to love it. I’m so glad you posted it to Motivate. (I’m a bit behind). All I wanna say is ” Yes! yes! yes!”

    This”We are not supposed to obey to show who we are . . . we are to obey to show who God is.” and this “It’s about doing everything in great love” should summarize the purpose of all we do. Thank you for this encouraging read!
    Blessings, Letetia

  14. Raising Samuels says:

    Well said, Deb! Christians need to know it is about honoring and obeying God for his glory, and not ours. Thanks for sharing 🙂 #bloggercaregroup

  15. Cindy Barclay says:

    Great post, Deb! “We are not supposed to obey to show who we are . . . we are to obey to show who God is.” I don’t obey out of duty or obligation, but the ore I understand God’s heart- the more I want to walk in His ways. All His ways are perfect and lovely altogether. Shine on! blessings- #bloggercaregroup

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