December 12, 2017

Out of the Will of God?

George Stiekes

Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. Ephesians 5:17

How do you know when you are out of the will of God? John 13 through 17 records a very intimate relationship between Jesus and His disciples. These chapters contain the farewell discourse of Jesus just prior to Calvary’s cross.

There will always be those who abandon their faith who were never truly saved from the beginning. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us (1 John 2:19). These definitely are out of the will of God because they never were in the will of God. Those who are truly believers can never be snatched from the Savior (John 10:28). Those who are truly saved will persevere in their faith, however, it is not unusual for a true believer to get out of the will of God for a period of time. We must keep short accounts with God and daily strengthen our relationship with Him in His Word and prayer so that we do not get out of His will.

The Apostle Peter got out of the will of God. He is a classic example of a believer out of the will of God and there are two words that reveal his spiritual condition at that time. It is found in Matthew 26:58. But Peter followed Him AFAR OFF unto the high priest’s palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end. Peter was following Christ but AFAR OFF. This is what will take place when a believer gets out of the will of God and it is a dangerous position to be in because it is possible to keep on getting further and further away. It actually happened to all of the disciples, except John, for Matthew 26:56 states, Then all the disciples forsook Him, and fled.

Jesus later put Peter on the spot and it is good that everyone of us should be placed in the same spot now and then. Jesus asked him directly, lovest thou Me more than THESE (John 21:15). The word THESE are those things or people that we tend to give greater priority than Jesus Christ. When a believer follows afar off, there are other THINGS or PEOPLE that become more important than Jesus. What is more important in your life than Jesus Christ?

Do not become overly pious right here. Remember that it was Peter who earlier said, Lord, I am ready to go with Thee, both into prison, and to death (Luke 22:33). So, this matter goes further than just commitment. It goes beyond commitment to genuine love. Therefore, the question for every believer relates to whether or not we truly love the Lord.

Have you ever said to someone, I love you, only to have them respond, You sure have a strange way of showing it! How apt would Jesus be to say this of us? Again, we are reminded that God’s will is a daily matter, not just for the big events in our lives.

So how do we get back into the will of God? See this post from January 30.

George Stiekes held successful pastorates in churches in Michigan and Washington among other places. He currently resides in North Carolina and blogs at Reverent Reflections. We recommend his ministry and republish his material by permission.

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