Summary: Sermon on Obedience. Explains what it means to be obedient
TO OBEY IS BETTER
A. Sir Leonard Wood once visited the King of France and the King was so pleased with him he was invited for dinner the next day. Sir Leonard went to the palace and the King meeting him in one of the halls, said, “Why, Sir Leonard, I did not expect to see you. How is it that you are here?” “Did not your majesty invite me to dine with you?” said the astonished guest. “Yes,” replied the King, “but you did not answer my invitation.” Then it was that Sir Leonard Wood uttered one of the choicest sentences of his life. He replied, “A king’s invitation is never to be answered, but to be obeyed.”
B. “Has the Lord as much 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. For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He has also rejected you from being king.” (1 Samuel 15:22-23).
C. Defining and applying obedience may seem easy at first, but it cannot always be the case. Saul thought he did obey, or at least he played like he did. Jesus is our King. His invitation to bring Him glory should correspond with our obedience. I would like us to see three concepts in regard to obedience. In studying them, I would like us to be asking ourselves: AM I OBEYING?
I. OBEDIENCE AND RELATIONSHIP
A. The cornerstone to understanding obedience is that of relationship. Without a relationship with God, the concept of obedience has no value.
B. In the first six days of God’s creative work, most of God’s creation was fashioned, and everything was declared to be “good” six times (1:4, 10, 12, 18, 21, and 25). But God’s crowning creation act had not been created yet. Then God said: "Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”" (Genesis 1:26-28, NIV).
1. God created man in his own image. God being a Triune God (one God in three distinct persons) created man to be relational. He created “male and female.”
2. He saw man being lonely in the Garden and said that it is not good for man to be alone (2:18), and made him a partner that was the woman (2:20-24).
3. In the Garden God walked with them. When he came to visit them “in the cool of the day,” (3:8), Moses makes it sound like this was His custom.
C. The truth of the matter is that God has always wanted to have fellowship with people. He walked with Enoch (5:22-24) and Noah (6:9). He always has desired and continues to desire fellowship with man.
D. Living the Garden was terrible for Adam and Eve for they were going away from the presence (relationship) of the Lord. The same was true of their son Cain (4:14).
E. Unless we treasure the relationship with God, then we will have no motivation or drive what He asks of us. So first, without a treasuring of a relationship we can’t begin to conceive of obedience.
II. OBEDIENCE AND ATTITUDE
A. Obedience and attitude go hand in hand. They are correlated. So to see this correlation we will take into account several aspects of attitude.
B. What is the relationship between motive and obedience?
1. The Jews of Jesus’ days gave, prayed and fasted and yet Jesus condemned them for it (Matthew 6:1-18). They were doing the right things. So why?
2. Jesus exposed that they were doing it for show and praise of men but not to give God glory. Their motives were not pure. They were not humble, but proud and self-promoting.
3. Do you do what you do to impress people or praise God? The answer to this question will reveal the motive of your heart.
C. What is the relationship between correctness and obedience?
1. Romans 14:1-6 present us two different groups. Obviously the two different groups of Christians were expressing faith in opposite ways. The issue was not correctness, but faith.