“Through Him and for His name’s sake,
we received grace and apostleship
to call people … to the obedience that comes from faith”
Paul is quite clear that our response to the gospel is ‘the obedience that comes from faith.’ He is not saying that obedience earns salvation but that having been given the incredible gift of salvation in Jesus Christ there is no other response possible than to live in obedience to Him.
There are two aspects to this call. The first is that in response to the message of the Gospel we place our complete and permanent trust and faith in Jesus Christ.
- “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent” (John 6:29)
The second follows on as a necessity. Having put out faith and trust in the Lord we commit ourselves to the life that He wants us to lead – not the way that the world is living. Not to do so would be a denial of our faith in Him. That is why James would say,
- “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it say” (James 1:22)
- As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead” (James 2:2)
Jesus underlines this when He tells us that
- “If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love” (John 15:10)
He is not saying that obedience brings us into His love, but that it keeps us there. The reason is quite simple – if we refuse to obey Him we walk away from Him! Obedience is not a tiresome requirement thought up by God as a test. Obedience is saying to ourselves that ‘Hey! There is a better and more fulfilling way to live – and I want to be a part of it!”
I’ll do it His Way
Lord help me to desire Your Life and Way of Living – and to walk with You all the days of my life. Amen.