Updated: May 17, 2019
ARE WE DOING THIS?
The Lord has told us to “be” about a number of things that are for our spiritual and physical benefit. In some cases ignoring them will be to the detriment of our lives.
Possibly the greatest threat to today’s Church is the laxity with which we treat the Word. For example, how many of us are habitually watching and praying to escape the things that are coming? (Luke 21: 36). Are we serious about this?
“But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers“. (1 Peter 4:7)
Here we are quite specifically told to do something: be watchful, be at prayer, be serious about it. Are we?
There are a number of scriptures that urge us to be alert. Each one of these texts insists that we pay attention to what the Spirit is saying through the text. Meditate on these verses.
“Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:13)
“Looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless” (2 Peter 3:12-14)
“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth” (Hebrews 11:13)
“Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth” (Colossians 3:2)
“For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philipians 3:20)
“So likewise you, when you have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do‘.” (Luke 17:10)
Are we doing these things?
ACTING ON OUR BELIEF
The Word is given for our edification (= building up). If we don’t act out what it clearly says, we will not grow to our full stature (Ephesians 4: 13).
For instance, we might fully believe in a literal, personal and physical return of Jesus to earth. But if we’re not “looking for it” and “eagerly awaiting” His return, then we are NOT fully believing the Word! To “believe” in Greek means more than to give mental assent; it also means to “act on“.
In fact 2 Peter 3: 12 says that we should be looking for the return of Jesus and in doing so we actually hasten His coming. Now that’s challenging theology! But that’s what the Bible says.
If we’re actively looking for the Lord’s return, eagerly desiring it, and looking forward to it happening, then we’re helping it to come about. I don’t understand all the meaning behind it but that’s what the Word of God says – we hasten His return.
So on this level alone we can see that we’re being commanded by God to do something. So there must be other verses that are “directive texts” that we’ve probably overlooked as well.
Paul encourages us to keep a right focus, on heavenly issues not on earthly concerns. Even on this level, if we did this and acted on the Word we’d be a whole lot better off. How many times a day do we lose our focus and let the world redirect our gaze? The Word is giving us the antidote – set your mind on things above (Colossians 3: 2).
Most of the difficulties we face revolve around not bridging the gap between “doctrine” and “application”.
We believe alright but often find it hard to act out that belief and apply it to our daily walk.
This is one of the most glaring omissions in training and equipping today’s saints. We know an awful lot about doctrines and teachings, but not so much on how to apply them so that they bring us to maturity.
The Jewish (and therefore Biblical) concept of equipping was to teach “on the job” – hence Jesus’ statement “Come follow me” and see what I do. There are plenty out there who will teach you, but not so many who will show you how to apply that teaching.
I believe that this will be rectified in the coming release of the Five Fold ministry.But even if we didn’t have the Biblical concept of leadership (ie. local Elders and trans-local Five Fold ministry), we still have the Word to instruct us.
As seen earlier, there are a number of texts that insist that we “perform” them. Doing what they say. I encourage and challenge you to re-read those Scriptures and begin to do what they say.
The rewards come only when we do what the Word says should be done.