Disobedience / Obedience

Disobedience is one of the greatest sins committed against God. Disobedience to God plunged the whole world into sin. Disobedience is the basis of all human suffering this world has ever known or ever will know in time or in eternity.

God has voiced His disdain for disobedience all the way down through the ages and His judgment has been swift in many cases.

A vivid picture of God's dislike for disobedience is seen in the case of King Saul. Disobedience to God cost King Saul the kingdom. One of his sad utterances was, on account of disobedience, "I have played the fool. I have erred exceedingly." He died in defeat in the presence of his enemies on Mount Gilboa, both he and his sons and also the men who were with him. What a sad commentary on the life of King Saul given in I Samuel 31:6-10, "And they cut off his head and stripped off his armor and sent into the land of the Philistines round about to publish it in the house of their idols and among the people. And they put his armour in the house of Ashtaroth and they fastened his body to the wall of Bethshan.1' What humiliation came to King Saul, he who had been forewarned and admonished by the greatest of prophets, Samuel by name, who said, "To obey is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fat of rams" I Samuel 15:22.

Another sad incident of disobedience recorded in I Kings 13 is that of the young prophet, who after he had delivered the message of judgment against the wicked King Jeroboam, disobeyed God in eating and drinking where he was told not to. He died being slain by a lion in the way for what seemed a minor infraction. A sad story indeed! The child of God should always be aware of the fact that the lion, Satan, is always seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8) and disobedience to God#s Word never goes unnoticed by God and never goes unchastened.

Having now considered the disasterous results of disobedience to God's Word, let us now consider the heavenly approval God gives to the ones who tremble at His Word and obey its precepts. In II Chronicles 16:9 we read, "The eyes of the lord run to and fro throughout the whole world to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him." In I John 2:5 we read. "The perfect man is the man who keepeth His Word and in him," says God, "is the love of God perfected."

Obedience to God is the foundation of all God's blessing to His own redeemed ones. Salvation is based on obedience (Romans 5:19), 50 also are the following: growth in Christ (Matthew 28:19, 20), material blessings (Psalm 84:11), spintual blessings (James 1:25), love to Christ (John 14:21), worship (John 4:24), prayer (John 15:4), service (John 16:24), and everything pertaining to life and Godliness.

Paul emphasizes the importance of obedience to the Church at Corinth in the following words,"Bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience to Christ." He says if this is not done then we have no authority to avenge disobedience in others if our own obedience is not fulfilled (2 Cor. 10:5).

Brethren, elders, and shepherds of God's flock, and those who labor in Word and Doctrine, be careful that what we teach others is based on God's Word and not after the traditions of men, lest we find ourselves exposed to God's chastening hand now besides losing our reward in that day.

W.G. McCartney