Obedience: the best way to believe

Obedience: the best way to believe

1 Samuel 15:22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

Just as the children’s song goes: “Obedience is the very best way to show that you believe”, the place of obedience in the Christian life is important and irreplaceable. Obedience is an act of faith and confidence in God and He demands it from anyone who would want to be associated with His kingdom. Every Biblical act of faith had a form of obedience or the other as its bedrock.

As good as sacrifices are, they pale in comparison to obedience before God. For sacrifices to be acceptable, they must only be done alongside obedience and never the exclusion of it, regardless of how great, good, or glorious the sacrifices are. The variable assumptions of men to try to persuade God by sacrifice are astoundingly foolish and baseless- Jeremiah 7:22-23 For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices: But this thing commanded I them, saying, Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you. Many of the sacrifices of prayers we offer unceasingly look good but without a basis of obedience, they are merely “lavish religious production” which bears no answer from God- Ecclesiastes 5:1 Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. Obedience embodies the total acceptance of the rulership and kingship of Christ over our lives and adds a sweet odor to our sacrifice before God.

There are no shades of obedience. Sacrifices without obedience are half-hearted attempts to persuade God to accept our perspectives that do not conform to His commandments. This is, of course, a futile attempt as God never changes, nor does His standard.

In conclusion, disobedience is a powerful tool of unbelief and a grievous sin before God. The text reckons it as punishable as the sin of Idolatry, the very first commandment- Matthew 22:37-38 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. Therefore, the trueness of our love confession to God is obedience.

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