I feel that God…
Have you ever heard a person say something to the effect of, “I don’t feel convicted over that…” or “I sense that God wants me to be who I am…”, and so on? I have. I fear that there is a great deception taking place in our world, and even in our churches. A deception that says God is all sense and feeling, and what we feel about Him must be true and right, because we feel it must be so. I hear this most often in reference to a sin. Friends, I have good news and bad news for you. The bad news is that this feeling/sensing way of believing is wrong. It does not line up with God’s Word and a person may come under judgment for continuing in that way of thought. The good news, though, is that God does not leave us with question marks when we seek to know who He is and what He expects of us. We do not have to wonder! His Word clearly shows us His character, from creation to the arrival of Jesus and beyond.
In Malachi 3:6, God says, “For I the Lord do not change…” So, when we read of His commands to repent, to turn back to Him, to deny ourselves, to follow Him and His ways, we must remember that He has not changed His ways or character!
In 1 Peter we find this charge:
Therefore, with your minds ready for action, be serious and set your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires of your former ignorance. But as the One who called you is holy, you also are to be holy in all your conduct; for it is written, Be holy, because I am holy.
And if you address as Father the One who judges impartially based on each one’s work, you are to conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your temporary residence. For you know that you were redeemed from your empty way of life inherited from the fathers, not with perishable things like silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without defect or blemish. He was chosen before the foundation of the world but was revealed at the end of the times for you who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory so that your faith and hope are in God.
By obedience to the truth, having purified yourselves for sincere love of the brothers, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, since you have been born again – not of perishable seed but of imperishable – through the living and enduring word of God.
Later in chapter 2, Peter urges his audience to abstain from fleshly desires that war against them. There is a call to good works, not as a means of salvation, but as an outward showing of whose we are. In 2 Peter, he states the world is corrupt, seeking to satisfy their evil desires. In 2 Peter 1:5, he charges again: For this reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness, godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they will keep you from being useless or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. The person who lacks these things is blind and shortsighted and has forgotten the cleansing from his past sins.
He continues with warnings for you and me. Abstain from the world. Deny your flesh. In essence, just because it feels right or good, does not make it so! The Bible is filled to the brim with God’s character and instruction. Yes, He is a loving and merciful God, but to those who fear Him. The author of Hebrews warns in chapter 11 that if we deliberately sin after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there is no longer a sacrifice for our sins! He states that judgment waits instead, for he who tramples on the grace of Jesus! In the case of our faith, willful ignorance is NOT bliss. God has made His ways plain to us, and all He asks is for our hearts to turn to Him, and away from what feels right and good in our corrupted world. Now, don’t hear me say that you will be saved by your works! Of course not! Jesus is our means of salvation, but He does ask us to obey and turn to Him. We have a clear guide in scripture, and we should go to it. We should seek it out and not lean on our own understanding.
Let us not be a people who feel or sense our way through the darkness, but instead, let us pick up the light of His word, and use it to illuminate our path.
*There is so much more scripture! Go read your Bibles and seek out His truth. I can only fit a small amount here, but you will be blessed when you search His words and learn more about who He really is. 🙂