Did you know that the blessings of the Lord are contingent upon our obedience?
Make no mistake, Although the free gift of Salvation qualifies as a blessing, it's our obedience to God that secures even that blessing.
"Salvation is a GIFT to the sinner."
Romans 3:23 says, "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" The Bible informs us that Salvation is for the sinner. The only prerequisite to receiving this gift from God, is our personal willingness to accept it.
We can't earn it, inherit it, or steal it; and we certainty can't buy it. Our one and only option in receiving God's gift of Salvation, is to accept it.
Additionally, Salvation is something we do not even deserve as sinners. Therefore, it's only by the Grace of God that we are privy to it. Salvation comes by way of the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross. It's a provision of God for the redemption of man, but God will not force it on us.
You have been given a choice in the matter. You have the right to exercise your choice to choose it, or you may also refuse it. I don't recommend it, but it's absolutely your choice to make. Just know that you will have to live with the consequences of that choice, should you choose to refuse it.
However, to receive the gift of Salvation, only meets one criterion for getting into Heaven.
Cashing in on the eternal benefits of this gracious gift, and actually making it into Heaven, hinges on our willful and conscious obedience.
In other words, if you disobey God, you can loose it.
One common mistake among individuals regarding obedience in the things of God, is that they tend to think that their opinions matter. Sorry to say, they do not.
In light of God's blessings, obedience to Him is not negotiable. Your beliefs, knowledge, understanding, or even how you feel about God's mandates_do not change God's decrees. God's Word is final authority on everything we do in this life. That's whether we agree with Him or not.
As far as God is concern, man can think and say whatever he wants. We could hold a rally, post our views on social media, text about it, write books, or even produce a movie about how we feel. It will not change one thing God has ruled on. God Word remains truth, in-tact, and unchangeable with or without mans approval, in every generation under the sun.
That's what people don't get. God does not need our help or input on managing His world_we need His.
We need to understand that God is not trying to hurt or enforce control over mankind. We are all created freewill agents, and we have been granted the freedom of choice. God does not interfere with those choices. Instead, what God does for those who make the wrong choices in life, is to spare them His immediate wrath, and afford them provision for their repentance.
God's mandates are simply put in place to protect mankind. The Bible exist because God is trying to guide us through His Word.
When we choose to live outside of God's divine directives, we open ourselves up to the many harms that exist in the world. It would serve us well in this one lifetime to tailor our individual life choices to match God's perception and guidance, Because God is Omniscient (all knowing), and because He is the Creator of all things that do exist in the world; who better to guide us through life than the one Who gives us life ?
Consider the following analogy of the Car:
Let's say you own a car. You know for sure it belongs to you, because you're name is on the title. You have the keys, and you park it in your garage every night.
Still, if you choose to disregard the auto industry's warnings that your car will not run without gas. It will not matter even if your car is paid-in-full. Without gas, it will not run.
You could cry all night about it, and attend counseling sessions all day. You could even go as far as to organize a protest, start a blog, or file a complaint with the consumer protection services. If you insist on not putting gas into that car, you are going NOWHERE.
It wouldn't matter how clear you were in making your point. Your circumstances will not change if you continue to ignore the auto-industry's instructions. You will be the only one suffering the set-backs of owing a car with an empty gas tank. In fact this situation will become increasingly worse.
A situation like this could cost you your job. Also, friends don't stick around when you don't have transportation_they move on. Should you allow the car to sit up, over time, you could expect to loose the car as well. See how it works? It's a trickle down effect of mis-fortune. All because of one bad choice.
That's how the Blessings of obedience work. The car in that analogy is you. Since the Bible outlines the mandate for reaching Heaven, we can't get there without adhering to what it says. Obedience is the fuel we need to take us to the Blessing. When we choose disobedience, our Salvation is stagnant, and that disobedience will ignite the perils of a curse in our lives instead.
With Salvation, once you accept it, it's yours. you have it. Just like having the title to a car, it even has your name is on it. However, your disobedience will put your Salvation in jeopardy. If your Salvation is not kept fueled with obedience, you will not reach your destiny of Heaven. Your journey will stop on the roadside of life.
For some reason, man remains under the misconception that we can help God see things clearer. Man can't help God see anything clearer. Man cannot see clear himself. Therefore, whenever we willfully go against God; based on our personal perception of the matter, we are by default choosing to loose. Immediately the Blessing is removed. Which then leaves us opened to the trickle down effect of mis-fortune.
People tend to put too much value on their personal opinions. God does not ask our advice on anything. The only things we can do to be helpful to God, is to be obedient. When we model obedience we are helping God to move further in His plan for mankind. Your disobedience is nothing but a hindrance to God, because it interferes with His plans.
If we could only understand that it does not matter to God, that you happen to disagree with the Bible. It does not matter that you don't trust in a Bible that you believe to be written by fallible man. It does not matter that you feel it's not fair that you obey, while everyone else is doing whatever they want. It also does not matter that times are changing.
None of that matters to God, and none of that is grounds for dismissal of God's precepts. It's your submission to God's Word despite what's going on in the world that counts to God.
I encourage you today to choose wisely. In Deuteronomy 11:28, God told the Israelites,
... "I set before you this day two mountains, Mt Gerizim, the mountain of blessings, and Mt Ebal, the mountain of curses. The blessings would hinge on their obedience, while the curses of course would be the result of their disobedience.
Later in Deuteronomy 28, the people were told that if they choose obedience, that all the blessings of that mountain would come upon them and overtake them.
“Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God
will set you high above all nations
of the earth.
And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of
the Lord your God."
On the other hand, should they choose disobedience, they could then expect all the curses of Mt. Ebal to come upon them and overtake them as well.
The same is true for us today. God's mandate for obedience is eternal. Either we trust God and obey, or we don't. You choose.
"While obedience ignites the Blessings of Heaven _disobedience extinguishes it."