Friday, July 25, 2008

To Obey....


Samuel told Saul in 1 Samuel 15:22b - "Look: to obey is better than sacrifice, to pay attention is better than the fat of rams." We often try to cover up our sin by giving it some religious sounding rationale. God looks on the hearts and not the deeds. We must be careful to follow God's Word from our hearts.

Martin Luther has been quoted as saying that there are three things necessary to create a successful minister of God: prayer, meditation, and temptation. You'll really never know the strength and reality of your faith until you experience difficulty in life. You'll never know for sure whether God can be trusted or if you'll fail Him in His call on your life.

The apostle Peter thought his faith in Christ was solid until the temptation came to deny Him. Peter denied Jesus three times. Peter was horrified that he could do such a terrible thing. In order to discover this about himself, he needed to be placed in a situation to reveal his true condition. From this he learned about himself, and that his need was to trust and rely upon God completely.

God allows circumstances to develop around your life to give your faith opportunity to be proven. It is only when we are tested in battle that we become skilled warriors. You can be confident God will allow trials to come your way through situations like a false assault on your character, or a difficult relationship that requires unconditional love. These battles are sent your way to test what you know in the mind in order that they might become part of your heart. A friend used to say that the most difficult part of faith was 18 inches. The distance between your mind and your heart.

If you fail the test, do not be overly concerned. Just be sure to learn from it and grow through the experience just as Peter did.

For Kingdom Education,

1 comment:

Amy Deardon said...

Dr. Marshall, I heard your interview tonight on the radio, and was fascinated to hear about your NT book. Your blog entries are thought-provoking too!

I'm an author whose first novel is just coming out. I did much careful research on first century Jerusalem to write it. You can check out my blog if you're curious.

Just wanted to say hi, and good luck with your book and preparations for a new school year!

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