Summary: The Bible clearly tells us what God’s Will is for our lives.
Knowing God’s Will Through The Scripture
20th January 2008 am
Ephesians 5:17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
What is God’s will for us? As seen last week, God’s will differs from believer to believer. But here are four aspects in the will of God which apply to every Christian.
The Greatest Knowledge – Knowing the Will of God
The Greatest Discovery – Finding the Will of God
The Greatest Achievement – Doing the Will of God
I. God’s Will is that we Learn More About Him – Colossians 1:9
The fist thing Paul prayed, in relation to the Christians at Colosse, was for their spiritual vision. They needed knowledge, understanding and wisdom. Satan will always go after the mind, 2 Corinthians 2:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not.
Ever since the fall the mind of man has been easy prey to Satan’s deceptions. People’s minds today have been deceived by different views, by different religions and by different cults. The problem is if we do not know God’s Word then we will be open for deception
The Gnostic cult was going after the minds of those at Colosse so Paul prayed for their spiritual enlightenment. – explain gnosticism
Satan will always exploit ignorance, so Paul prays that we should have knowledge, understanding and wisdom.
The Gnostics claimed to have a special and superior kind of knowledge. “Wisdom” (Sophia) has to do with the discerning faculty, with cleverness and skill and the right application of knowledge. You see it is possible to have knowledge without wisdom, to be a walking encyclopaedia of Bible facts and yet be unable or neglectful of the application,
“Understanding” (suneis) relates to our ability to look at things critically and objectively and to discern the true from the false. The Colossians were being deceived by false teachings – to know what is false we have to know what is real – the only way a bank teller knows that a note is counterfeit is because they have handled the real thing for so long – they know what it feels like, smells like and looks like.
We need to be “filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding”.. We need to do learn more about God’s Word, learn more about Him – it’s His will that we do.
II. God’s Will is that we Grow in Grace – 1 Thessalonians 4:3
Sanctification is a wonderful word but, sad to say it is often misunderstood. If you go through the Scriptures, you will find that it has several different meanings. Sanctification of the believer is a work of the Spirit of God. Let’s look at the threefold aspect of it:
Positional sanctification – we all enjoy this because of our position in Christ, we will never be more saved than at the moment we put our trust in Him. We are not accepted because of who we are, but because of what Christ has done. 1 Corinthians 1:2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, which at all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: . In the New Testament all believers are called saints – “sanctified (holy) ones.”
We don’t have to develop holiness by our own self-effort and self-denial. We are born into it by means of the new birth. Paul says that Jesus Christ is made unto us both righteousness and sanctification (1 Corinthians 1:30)
Practical sanctification is the Holy Spirit working in our lives to produce holiness in our walk. God’s demand is that we, as His children, separate ourselves from evil things and evil ways. This is something that we must grow in and pursue diligently. It is a learned behaviour. It is made possible by the power of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit 2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
This practical sanctification will never be perfect so long as we are in these bodies with our old sinful flesh
Total sanctification will occur in the future when we are conformed to the image of Christ Jesus. Then both the position and the practice of sanctification will be perfect.
The literal meaning of the word sanctification is to be “set apart for God.” The moment a lost sinner comes to Christ and accepts Christ as his Saviour, that person is set aside for God’s use.
This is clearly taught in the Old Testament in the tabernacle. God taught the Old Testament believers great doctrinal truths through very simple, practical lessons. In the tabernacle there were vessels and instruments which were used in the sacrifices. After they had gone through the wilderness for forty years, those pots and pans and forks and spoons were pretty well beaten and battered. I don’t think they were very attractive. I think that any good housewife would have said, “Let’s trade them in on a new set. Let’s throw these away.” However, God called them holy vessels. They were holy because they were set aside for the use of God. That is what made them holy.