Copyright 1994 - 2023 Bill's Bible Basics
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Published On :
June 11, 1997
Last Updated :
September 27, 2019
Human Rat Race, Jesus Came To Do God's Will, Jesus Became Our High Priest And Introduced A New Covenant, Stubborn King Saul, Obedient King David, Psalm 40 Mysteries, Importance Of Obeying God And Knowing His Will, The General Will Of God Is Salvation, Our Great Commission: Share Message Of Salvation With Others, Treasure Of God's Kingdom, God Has Not Changed, Challenges To Preaching The Gospel, God Will Provide Your Needs, What If Your Needs Are Not Met, A Call For Laborers, Personal Faith And Choice, Rich Ruler: Forsake All To Follow Jesus, The Full Price Of Discipleship, Count The Cost First
In this modern world of ours, most people are kept so busy just trying to survive from day to day, that very few ever take the time to think about -- or even care about -- what God's Will might be for their lives. This is not to suggest that they are necessarily bad people; they are simply caught up in the usual human rat race, and the mundane affairs of this present life. However, for Believers in Jesus Christ, this is indeed a very important issue we should not choose to simply ignore. While discussing the necessity of Christ's Sacrifice on the Cross as the Final Atonement for our sins, the Apostle Paul quotes from the Book of Psalms in his Epistle to the Hebrews. Paul writes the following:
"Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God . . . Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second."
Hebrews 10:7, 9, KJV
The original prophecy, as written by King David about a thousand years earlier, finds its origin in the following verses from the fortieth Psalm:
"Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart."
Psalm 40:7-8, KJV
If you read more of Hebrews chapter ten -- and in fact, the entire Epistle -- you will discover that the Apostle Paul is actually describing how Jesus became our new High Priest, and how through His Sacrifice on the Cross, He did away with the Old Covenant of the Old Testament period, and He brought in a New Covenant which was founded upon and sealed with His own Blood. That is why in the previous verses, Paul writes "He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second." I likewise discuss these issues at length in the series "Is Jesus the Only Begotten Son of God?".
As some of you will know, unlike Jesus who delighted to do His Father's Will, King Saul was a king of a very different kind. Rather than acknowledge and obey the voice of the Lord via the Prophet Samuel, he relied upon his own wisdom and human understanding. Because of this, the Scriptures inform us that God became angry with Saul, and rent the kingdom from him, and eventually made David the king. David actually served in Saul's army at the time. Consider the following verses:
"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."
Proverbs 3:5-6, KJV
"And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king."
1 Samuel 15:22-23, KJV
King David was the exact opposite of Saul. He was in love with the Lord's Spirit, and he highly exalted God's Word in his many Psalms. In fact, if you carefully read Psalm 40, you will discover that while it is a prophecy regarding Jesus, it is also a parallel to David's own life. You see, not only was David persecuted by his enemies -- just like Jesus -- but he was also the second king of Israel, after the first king, who obviously was Saul, just like the previous verses state. But that is not all. Consider that we find the "first Adam" in the Book of Genesis, and the "last Adam" -- or "second Adam"? -- in Jesus Christ, as per 1 Corinthians 15:45. Also, unlike disobedient King Saul, David fervently endeavored to do God's Will, just like Jesus. Consider the first three verses of his very first Psalm which show the reward of delighting in doing God's Will:
"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper."
Psalm 1:1-3, KJV
In later Psalms, King David continues to proclaim the reward of those people who obey the Word of the Lord, as well as his own personal delight in doing the same. Consider this group of verses:
"Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart."
Psalm 37:4, KJV
"I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word . . . Thy testimonies also are my delight and my counsellors . . . Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight . . . And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved . . . Their heart is as fat as grease; but I delight in thy law . . . Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight . . . I have longed for thy salvation, O LORD; and thy law is my delight."
Psalm 119:16, 24, 35, 47, 70, 77, 174, KJV
Thus we see that obeying the Lord, and knowing what His Will is for our lives is something which should be of concern to every sincere Christian. As it was with Jesus and King David, it should also be a delight for us to do God's Will. But the question which then arises is this: Exactly how does one find out what God's Will is for his or her live? Perhaps the best approach to answering this question would be for us to first establish what we know to be the Will of God. That is to say, the general Will of God. Once we have established that, it will then be easier to provide a more amplified answer. Upon conducting a bit of Biblical research, I found the following Scriptures which are applicable to this subject. Let's start with what Jesus had to say regarding the Will of His Father:
"Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work."
John 4:34, KJV
"Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent."
John 6:29, KJV
"And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day."
John 6:40, KJV
From the previous verses, we can ascertain that the words "work" and "will" are sometimes synonymous. In this case, God's Work, or Will, for Jesus, was that He fulfill His mission of Redemption, by offering His Life on the Cross for the sins of the world. In other words, Jesus came to save us. Jesus then expands on that thought by adding that it is then God's Will that we believe on what His Son has done for us, so that we might obtain Everlasting Life. This then, is the overall Will and Work of God: that all men everywhere might be saved, as becomes evident by the following set of verses:
"For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost."
Matthew 18:11, KJV
"For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them . . ."
Luke 9:56, KJV
"For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost."
Luke 19:10, KJV
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved."
John 3:16-17, KJV
"For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth."
1 Timothy 2:3-4, KJV
"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
2 Peter 3:9, KJV
A few of my other articles which discusses the scope of God's Salvation plan are "Is the Message of Salvation Meant for All Men?", "All Are Given a Chance, But . . ." and "Not Everyone is a Child of God". You will find them listed at the end of this current series. So, after explaining what God's overall Will is for humanity, Jesus then narrows things down a little more for us when He tells His Disciples the following. Please notice the interesting numerology between these two verses:
"Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you."
John 15:16, KJV
"And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."
Mark 16:15, KJV
Thus we see that once we fulfill God's overall Will for our lives by believing in Jesus, similar to the Apostles and the Disciples of old, we are then expected to do what we can to carry that same message of Salvation to others. Amongst us Christians, this responsibility is commonly referred to as the Great Commission. Following are some additional verses where this Christian mandate is mentioned:
"And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give."
Matthew 10:7-8, KJV
"Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine."
2 Timothy 4:2, KJV
"But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth."
Acts 1:8, KJV
"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come."
Matthew 24:14, KJV
"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:"
Matthew 28:19, KJV
"And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem."
Luke 24:46-47, KJV
"And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ."
Acts 5:42, KJV
"And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house . . . Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears."
Acts 20:20, 31, KJV
"How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things . . . So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."
Romans 10:14-15, 17, KJV
"For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!"
1 Corinthians 9:16, KJV
"Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things."
Galatians 6:6, KJV
"Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth:"
Colossians 1:4-6, KJV
"And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also."
2 Timothy 2:2, KJV
As I have explained on other occasions, being saved is like possessing a great treasure. It is something we should want to share with as many people as we possibly can, by whatever means we can. Jesus also compared God's Word and the Kingdom of Heaven to a great treasure in the following two verses:
"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field . . . Then said he unto them, Therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old."
Matthew 13:44, 52, KJV
Now some people may argue, "Yes, but preaching the Good News was just for the people in those days. That was just for the Disciples whom Jesus had personally hand chosen to spread the Gospel during the First Century. Surely it is not meant for those of us living today in the 21st Century. After all, times have changed. I have a family to support. I have bills to pay. I don't have time to preach the Gospel, even if I wanted to."
My friends, this is indeed true. No one can deny that life has become much more complicated than in those bygone days. Although to be honest, even then they had these same basic responsibilities. They had to support their families. They had to pay the Temple tithe. They had to pay Roman taxes. They had to grow food, herd animals, repair their homes, mend their clothes, etc. On top of all of that, they did not have electricity or running water. Yet despite all of those challenges -- not to mention constant persecution -- they were still able to reach the known world of their day with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Having said that, allow me to ask you something. Has God changed? Is He any less powerful than He was back then? Let's look to the Scriptures for a clear answer:
"For I AM THE LORD, I CHANGE NOT; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed."
Malachi 3:6, KJV
"I said, O my God, take me not away in the midst of my days: thy years are throughout all generations. Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: BUT THOU ART THE SAME, AND THY YEARS SHALL HAVE NO END."
Psalm 102:24-27, KJV
"And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: BUT THOU ART THE SAME, AND THY YEARS SHALL NOT FAIL."
Hebrews 1:10-12, KJV
"Jesus Christ THE SAME yesterday, and to day, and for ever."
Hebrews 13:8, KJV
So if God has not changed, are we really to believe that He is unable to provide for His servants just as much today as He did in the days of old? To say that the Lord is no longer as great as He used to be, or that today He is incapable of fulfilling His Word, would be in total contradiction to the Holy Scriptures. If you seriously doubt that God can still provide your needs in this modern age, if you truly seek first His Kingdom, then I ask you to please consider the following sample verses:
"God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?"
Numbers 23:19, KJV
"Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:"
Isaiah 59:1, KJV
"And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him."
1 John 5:14-15, KJV
"But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus."
Philippians 4:19, KJV
"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."
Matthew 6:33-34, KJV
"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened . . . If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?"
Matthew 7:7-8, 11, KJV
"And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive."
Matthew 21:22, KJV
"Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows."
Luke 12:6-7, KJV
"And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest? Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith? And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you."
Luke 12:22-31, KJV
"He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?"
Romans 8:32, KJV
"Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen."
Ephesians 3:20-21, KJV
"Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart . . . I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread."
Psalm 37:4, 25, KJV
"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it."
Malachi 3:10, KJV
Given the many Scriptures I have shared here, it should be rather evident that God both can and is willing to provide our needs, if we are truly seeking first His Kingdom, and fulfilling His Will for our lives. Now, if you are seriously lacking anything in your life, the problem is not with God. It is with you. Perhaps you are simply lacking in faith. Or maybe you are doing something which is displeasing to the Lord. Only you personally can determine what the problem is through prayer.
When it comes to serving the Lord, what it really comes down to is a matter of faith and personal choice. I cannot decide for you, and you cannot decide for me. We must each operate according to our own degree of faith and personal conviction. The Lord is indeed doing the calling. He is most assuredly looking for modern-day Disciples who desire to carry on the work of reaping the soul harvest. However, it is entirely up to us how we choose to respond to His call. Consider the following set of verses:
"And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. And they straightway left their nets, and followed him."
Matthew 4:19-20, KJV
"Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest."
Matthew 9:37-38, KJV
"For many are called, but few are chosen."
Matthew 22:14, KJV
"Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest."
Luke 10:2, KJV
"Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest." John 4:35
"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:"
John 10:27, KJV
Just as occurred back then, not everyone is willing to simply give up everything by forsaking family, friends and material possessions in order to follow Jesus. It takes a special kind of person to do this, and they are indeed far and few between. The rich ruler in Luke chapter eighteen certainly did not make the grade. Consider the following verses:
"And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother. And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up. Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich. And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through a needles eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God."
Luke 18:18-25, KJV
There is definitely a price to pay for such dedicated service to the Lord, and it goes beyond just giving up one's material possessions. Believe me; I know because I have experienced it in my own life. Consider the following verses:
"And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me."
Matthew 10:36-38, KJV
"And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it."
Luke 9:23-24, KJV
Because there is such a high price to pay in order to be a full-time Disciple of Jesus Christ, even back then, Jesus admonished those people who desired to follow Him, to first count the cost, as we can determine by the following group of verses:
"For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand? Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace. So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple."
Luke 14:28-33, KJV
Please go to part two for the continuation of this series.
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