June 14, 2022
Tuesday, June 14, 2022
You are My friends if you do whatever I command you (John 15:14).
Sin is rebellion against the laws of God. (1 Samuel 15:22) Has 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 heed than the fat of rams. (Psalm 51:16 17) For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart - these, O God, You will not despise. (1 John 3:4) Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.
Turning from sin requires obedience to God, and submission to His authority and will. “A person cannot submit to God while at the same time openly rebelling against Him; the same life cannot be characterized both by lawlessness and obedience” (John MacArthur). Salvation is predicated upon repentance of sin and obedience to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Romans 6:17) But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. In much of the New Testament, obedience to Christ is synonymous with faith in Christ. (1 Peter 1:1-2) Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied. Speaking of Jesus and our relationship to Him in faith, the Apostle wrote (Hebrew 5:8-9) though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him. The punishment for sin in hell is for those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Thessalonians 1:8).
The Lord cannot be on intimate terms with anyone who refuses to walk the path of obedience to the Father with Him. It is by careful observation that the Lord did not say “I am your friend if you obey Me,” but You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. Jesus was exalted by the Father for His obedience to the will of God. (Philippians 2:8-11) And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. We can call Jesus our friend because He has saved us, but it is He who exalts us and calls us His friends because we live a life of obedience to Him. Amen.