Failure To Obey Him, Is To Reject Him

December 28, 2012

Jesus teaches us that if we say we love Him, the proof of our love is that we will be obedient to His commands. (John 14:15) He also teaches that only by seeing that we are obedient, will He and the Father (as the Spirit –v. 16-18) come to indwell us. (v. 23) The apostles taught this as well. (Acts 5:32 // Rom. 8:9 // 1 John 3:24)

The most simplistic explanation of what it means to be “obedient to God” is to “repent and believe the Good News” (Mark 1:15) or, even more simply put, “to believe in Jesus.” (See John 3:15,16,36) For if anyone truly believes in Jesus (Emmanuel / God-with-us), then that person will also believe His words; and to believe His words equates to obeying them, with the renunciation of sin being the first step.

Jesus equates these two (belief and obedience) repeatedly. For example, in John 12:47, Jesus teaches about “the person who hears My words but does not keep [obey / follow / adhere to] them.” In verse 48 Jesus teaches that to fail to keep His words is to actually reject Him, for He goes on to say, “There is a judge for the one who rejects Me and does not accept My words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.” Then in verses 49 and 50, Jesus says that His words are in exact accord with the instruction and teaching of the Father, and that this doctrine is eternal life.

In other words, Jesus is warning us that to not obey His words is to not obey the Father’s commandment (order / doctrine) concerning His Son, and that, conversely, obedience to this charge (directive / instruction) is the only way to inherit eternal life rather than condemnation.

Walking in obedience to Christ’s teachings, or not doing so, is the determinant of our eternal destination. Jesus warns of this over and over and asks, “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” (Luke 6:46) For as His words make clear, it is only the person who is repentant, humble, and purified (Matt. 18:3 & 19:17 & 23:12,25-33), and who puts His words into practice (Luke 6:47), who will escape eternal destruction. (v. 49)

with love,

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