Read Philippians 2:5-8. What does it mean to obey? Jesus Christ, who said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth” (Matthew 28:18), first had to obey the will of the Father. We talked about His humility a few weeks ago, and how that humility led to obedience.
How important is Christ’s obedience in the grand scheme of things? Read Romans 5:18-19. Without His obedience, what hope would we have? Read Romans 5:6-11.
“‘Only a divine being can accept death as obedience; for ordinary men it is a necessity!’ The death of Christ was not something inflicted upon the Son of God, but the voluntary laying down of his life for the salvation of people (John 10:17ff); therefore, it was, on the part of Christ, obedience to the Father’s will.” (Coffman, Commentary on Philippians).
There is nothing that any of us can do in this life that is more important than submitting to and obeying God’s will. But in order to submit to Him, we need to recognize that there are several other authority figures to whom we need to submit. Who are some of those others?
— husbands [Ephesians 5:22-24; Titus 2:5]
— parents [Ephesians 6:1-3; Colossians 3:20]
— employees [Eph. 6:5-8, Colossians 3:22; Titus 2:9]
— elders [Hebrews 13:17]
— government [Romans 13:1-7; 1 Peter 2:13]
Is it easy to do this? What can we do to motivate ourselves to be more obedient and submissive to those in authority? Read Ephesians 6:8 again.
If we can learn to obey those in authority in this world, whether it is authority within the family structure, or in the church, the government, or at work or school, then we can more easily submit to God’s will, knowing the eternal rewards of obeying Him will far exceed those temporary rewards given in this life.
Read Romans 6:16-18. Every day, we decide who we are going to obey. If we obey the lust of the flesh, then we make ourselves “”slaves…of sin leading to death.” But if we obey the Father, that decision makes us “slaves of righteousness.” Despite the negative connotation that word carries today, we need to recognize that we are all slaves. We are either slaves of sin, or slaves of God.
Read Galatians 5:16-21. Here is one of the Scriptural lists of sinful behaviors that we must avoid. It is not all-inclusive, but gives us a general idea of the types of activities that displease God. Paul then turns his attention to a more positive list. Read Galatians 5:22-25. We cannot love and hate each other at the same time. We cannot be adulterous and be at peace with our spouses. We cannot be kind and have outbursts of wrath. We cannot experience joy if we are jealous. The works of the flesh are opposed to the fruit of the Spirit. We must decide, will we fulfill the lust of the flesh, or will we walk in the Spirit?
Read 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10. What is the consequence if we choose to disobey God’s will? Do we truly understand what that means? What are the two goals we are striving for? Get to heaven, and take as many people with us as we can. Have you been reaching out to your friends and family that are not members of the Lord’s church?
Read Hebrews 5:8-9. What are the results of obedience?
Read Romans 6:1-13. Where does our allegiance lie? How do we demonstrate that allegiance?
Jesus “humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” Then what happened? Read Philippians 2:9-11. Let us commit to losing our minds, and take on the mind of Christ in obedience to the Father.