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Teaching Them to Obey

It’s a good idea occasionally to ask important questions of ourselves to see if we are on track spiritually. Let me throw out a few simple questions that may be more revealing then they appear at first glance:

  1. Do I read the Word of God regularly?
  2. How much of what I read do I obey?
  3. How do I determine the answer to question #2?

The Great Commission, which we find in Matthew 28:19,20, instructs us to baptize and teach. Note the precise words of Jesus, though: “…teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you” (emphasis added). Your version may read “obey” instead of “observe.” Either way, the point is the same: we are not simply to convey information in our teaching; we are to help people learn obedience.

To promote obedience we must obviously be obedient ourselves. Besides, we know that the Word of God is “breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16,17). The Word of God demands an obedient response. Abstract thinking or concepts are good, but until they become actionable, we miss out on the full blessing of the Scriptures.

Next time you read a Bible passage, meditate on it for a while and ask God how His Spirit wants you to act upon what you’ve learned. Be specific. For example, “God is majestic” may be the main idea of a passage, but it’s not yet actionable. “Call Lisa and encourage her in her depression about God’s majesty”—that’s more like it!

We appreciate hearing from you. How have you made sure to act on what God’s Spirit is telling you through Scripture?

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