Tuesday, September 4, 2012

To Will and to Work for His Good Pleasure

We serve an amazing God!  He puts the desire in us to do something and then as we embrace that choice and stand in faith, He does it (through us).  And to top it off, it pleases Him.  Philippians 2:13 states "for it is God who works in you both to will and to work for His good pleasure."

What work do we have to do?  Clearly the Word of God in James points out that faith without works is dead.  Likewise, Ephesians 2:10 declares "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them."  He intends for us to work as a result of our faith, and He has prepared things for us to do.

Does He do it or do we do it? Yes.  Let me ask you a question.  Did you believe to get saved or did God give you the grace to believe and you simply received it?  The answer is "yes."

Perhaps Galatians 2:20 can shed light on our dilemma. "I have been crucified with Christ, it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me, and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me."  In other words, when I accept that Jesus gave Himself for me and realize by faith that I, my old man, died with Him, then, also by faith, I now live in His resurrected life.  My new life is hidden in the living risen Lord and He is in all I do.  We are eternally joined.  So everything I now do is by His strength and power through faith.  Instead of complaining about having to work, we now understand that God enables me to do all things as a way to partner with Him.  My working together with Him gives Him pleasure.

What a great perspective--we can please the Creator of the Universe simply by doing the things set before as an act of cheerful worship.  Faith makes it happen.  Jesus said the work of God is to believe in the One whom He sent.  When we believe in Jesus and His life in us, everything we do comes from God and is by God's strength.

God's desire from the beginning was to have fellowship with us. He is pleased to accomplish work together with us.  He gives us the desire and provides the power and we get the joy of accomplishing the work.

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