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Every Christian Must (7 of 9)
A car may have a tank full of gasoline, but unless the fuel is ignited it won't move an inch. I know many Christians whose tanks are full but they are still stalled between the Red Sea and the Jordan River. For years I was puzzled by members of my church who knew the bible like scholars, could hear a sin drop a mile away, traveled hundreds of miles to attend Bible conferences, but whose lives lacked the plus of Christlikeness. In spite of all their knowledge and activity there was no sign of spiritual maturity; love, joy, peace and the other characteristics of a spiritual life were conspicuously absent. They had plenty of fuel--hi-test stuff at that--but no spark to ignite it.
The purpose and timing of God constitute the fuel of victory in the Christian life. And the spark that ignites it, releasing it as a practical and powerful force in the life, is obedience. God's power flows in the stream of our obedience.
These first two conditions for experiencing god's power, His purpose and timing are God's business alone. They are His responsibility entirely. God never consults with us about either His purpose or His schedule. But obedience is our responsibility. Even though the ability to obey comes from God, we, and we alone are accountable for obedience when the time is right. God reveals to us His purpose, then says, "Now it's your move." And at that moment, everything hinges upon our obedience. We dealt with obedience in chapter two. In this chapter I want to look more deeply into the nature of it.
What motivates us to obey God--what is its basis? The record of the Jordan crossing is a testimony to the unquestioning and unhesitating obedience of Joshua. Under such adverse and pessimistic circumstances, how was he able to obey so admirable? The answer is actually simple: he trusted God. Obedience is the evidence and expression of our faith in God. Obedience is faith turned inside out. Faith i ...
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