The Word of God tells us over and over again how God will bless us when we obey his commands. For some of us, that word “obey” has negative connotations. Obedience isn’t for humans. I can almost hear some saying, “what are we, dogs?” Obeying seems like something we train our pets to do. So how hard is it to accept that obeying is simply doing what God says we are to do? For those with controlling temperaments, it takes a huge dose of humility.
I am a Choleric in the control area and I can tell you that God always will humble you in his time. He doesn’t want to leave you stuck and ruled by this area of your temperament. He wants you to be free to respond to his love and gift to us in Jesus with an abandon that will put aside that word “obey” and instead say “love”.
God is not telling us what to do because he has his own control issues. He has purpose and significance in everything. What he tells us to do is an act of love on his part to guide us into receiving all that he so wants to give us.
Blessings of Obedience Formula
Joshua 6:20 clearly shows us the formula that is needed for us to receive all the blessings that God wants to give us. It says, “When the trumpets sounded, the army shouted, and at the sound of the trumpet, when the men gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed; so everyone charged straight in, and they took the city. The city this verse is talking about is Jericho. It is the city the Israelites come to after wandering 40 years in the desert. It is part of the promised land God wants to give to them. But they have to take the city. Not take the city, in their way but in God’s way.
God instructed Joshua that the armed men were to march once around the city with the priests carrying the ark of the covenant and do this for six days. On the seventh day, they were told by God to march around the city seven times blowing their trumpets. They were told taht at the sound of the long trumpet blow after completing the seventh march around the city, they were to shout in a loud voice. This was all their part. God told them what to do and they did what God told them to do. And than, the blessings came. The wall to the city of Jericho came crumbling down and they were able to go straight into the city and take it.
This piece of history show us the straightforward formula of obedience. God commands + We obey = God’s blessing on us.
We have to look at our own lives and ask ourselves has God been blowing the trumpet, sounding for us to do something he wants us to do? Have we heard the trumpet call? Or are we ignoring or even denying when God calls us to do something? Maybe it was an opportunity to encourage another? Or it was an opportunity to submit and be humble? Perhaps it was a call to share about Jesus and what God’s done for you to someone?
We will all fail at following every single command every day. The Old Testament is a testimony to how difficult it is to obey all of God’s commands which is why he sent us Jesus. The gift of salvation and forgiveness that only he can give. We just have to learn to respond with obedience not because we are being told to do something but because we love God.