Day 211 - Obedience That Blesses

For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes he world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

—I JOHN 5:3 & 4

Why is the topic of obedience a constant emphasis? Why are the people elevated in other believers’ opinions and viewed as accomplishing the nearly impossible when they are perceived to be obedient? Obedience, after all, is not difficult. We either obey or we do not.

We are slaves of righteousness, so every believer can choose to obey. The reason it is perceived as being a big deal is that legalism has found a way into the Christian life through the topic of obedience, just as sin found a way in through the law. Legalists find a way through obedience to manipulate and control believers’ lives. We hear, “God blessed me because I obeyed.” In reality, God blessed because of Jesus, and Jesus has set us free to obey. In every religion but Christianity obedience and blessing are tied at the hip; in Christianity we are tied at the hip to Jesus, hence, tied to many blessings.

All believers are blessed, even though we do not always obey, because Jesus is a blessing and He dwells in us.

I was watching a man advertising holy spring water by claiming fantastic testimonies that came from its use. He told of one woman who won a $1,200,000 judgment against a man because she used the holy spring water. “Blessings” tied to spring water! As believers, obedience is one way we can bless ourselves as well as others. However, we must never forget that blessings come not from our behavior but His. Our obedience does not change God’s view of us; Jesus changed God’s view of us.