Key Passage: Psalm 24:1-5: Supporting Scripture: Mark 9:41; Luke 6:21-23; Romans 8:28; 2 Corinthians 11:23-27; 2 Timothy 4:7
Subject: Obedient Always Bring Blessings:
You might read this statement and say, "That many be true for you, but it hasn't been true in my life." If you feel that way, it's possible that you have been expecting the Lord to answer your prayers in a particular way. As a result, you have missed how He wanted to bless you. What is blessing? I personally define it as "anything that is an expression of God's love or goodness towards us." Answers to prayer, miraculous provision, and unexpected favor are some examples. We easily recognize these as God's gifts, but He sometimes chooses to bless us in different ways. For instance, He gives us strength, joy, and peace throughout seemingly impossible hardships, and He uses suffering to mature us spiritually. God's blessings come in a variety of forms, but we can be assured that obedience to Him always bring blessing.
I define a blessing as any expression of God's goodness and love toward us. Answered prayer, miraculous provision, and unexpected favor are some examples. We easily recognize these as God's gifts. But sometimes He chooses to bless us in different ways. For instance, He grants us strength and joy in the midst of hardship, and He uses our suffering to help us mature spiritually.
When we obey God, we can trust that He will display His goodness and love to us. Those who are wise will watch for His blessings in all their different forms.
A. Noah's obedience saved his family from the flood.
B. Abraham's obedience resulted in his becoming the father of a great nation, God's chosen people, Israel.
C. Moses led the Israelites out of Egyptian bondage.
D. Joshua won the battle of Jericho by following God's supernatural strategy.
E. David refused to harm Saul, the anointed king.
F. Jehoshaphat relied on God's word when the Ammonites attacked Judah.
G. Peter obeyed Jesus' command to fish in the heat of day.
H. Paul followed God's will and took the gospel to the Gentiles.
Types of Blessing
God's gifts aren't always obvious. But when you obey Him, He will bless you with:
A. Peace, joy, and contentment. These internal qualities often result when we step out in faith and obey God.
B. Spiritual growth. We will have more faith to obey the next time God challenges us to do something.
C. Eternal blessings. When we stand before God on judgment day, we will be rewarded for our obedience (see Mark 9:41; Luke 6:21-23).
Suffering before Blessing:
Often, the first effect of obedience is not blessing, but suffering. Sometimes, what God requires of us will initially lead to pain and sadness. We shouldn't assume that difficulty means we've made a mistake or that He has abandoned us. Let's look at two significant examples of suffering as an initial result of obedience:
A). Moses followed God's command to lead His people out of Egypt.
Not only did the leader experience difficulty in freeing the Israelites from bondage; the people also complained bitterly about life in the dessert once they were released. Despite these and other challenges, Moses is known as the most important leader in the Old Testament.
B). Paul obeyed God by preaching the gospel. As a result, he suffered tremendous persecution, danger, and physical abuse (2 Cor. 11:23-27). However, because he was imprisoned, the apostle had time to write his epistles to the Colossians, Philippians, Ephesians, and Philemon. His obedience resulted in supernatural blessing (see 2 Tim. 4:7).
God's Purposes for Our Suffering
A. To bring us to the end of ourselves. We become most useful to the Lord when we rely on Him completely. If we respond correctly to loss and suffering, we will find blessing through it.
B. To prevent pride. Suffering reminds us that all good things are gifts from God and not earned by our own efforts.
C. To remove idols from our lives. Worshipping anything other than God is a problem. He causes all things to work together for our good (Rom. 8:28). So if He removes a good thing from our lives, He must have a purpose, even if we can't see it at the time.
D. To deepen our understanding of His ways. When God does something and we aren't sure why, we can anticipate learning something new about how He operates.
E. To demonstrate His faithfulness to His children. In suffering, you and I have the opportunity to become living examples of the goodness of God. As others watch how we respond to overwhelming adversity, they recognize His loving care.
If you obey God, can you expect His blessings? Yes. But remember that His choice of blessing may be different from yours. Perhaps He will use suffering to draw you closer to Himself. Or He may use it to remove from your life those things that hinder fruitfulness for Him. No matter what, if you walk in His will, He will bless you in surprising ways.
Week # 7 Weekly Obedient Question: What if Jesus had not been obedient? Read Galatians 1:3–5 to learn what His obedience made possible. (For this reason we should give thanks for Christ's obedience.)
Week # 7 Weekly Application Question: How can we practice obedience?
Week # 7 Obedience Bible Quiz: True or False Week # 7
1. Solomon was promised a long life if he obeyed God.
2. Obedience to God brought Israel pain and suffering.
3. The wrath of God comes to those who disobey.
Father God, I want to start this prayer with thanksgiving for all the blessings You have brought into my life. We thank, You, Lord, for blessing each and every Prayer Warrior in this community, and those in other community and other websites too. Thank You, Lord, for all that You have done on our behalf; Thank You, Lord, for Your obedience to come and die for the sin of the world. We honor and praise Your holy Name. You are worthy to be praised. Glory be to You! Hallelujah! Father God, when You bless us and we do not see it, please help us to see what You are doing in our lives. When we suffer help us to stay faithful and obey to You plan for us. Help us to practice obedient daily, so Your wrath do not come to us as a result. When You speak to us, Lord, help us to hear and obey You in Jesus' name. Lord, You are our refuge and strength, and You are a very present help in time of trouble. The Lord of host is with us, and we are so grateful. Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised. You are our God and our guide forever and ever, AMEN.
Week # 7 Memory Verse: Deuteronomy 28:2
"And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God."
Week # 7 Weekly Reading Assignments: Galatians 1-Ephesians 1