What Really Is God's Will?
No person can find a place in the everlasting and blissful Kingdom of God UNLESS he or she not only understands His will but also endeavours to do it. A man may claim to be holy or appear to be religious – saying prayers times without number, claiming to see visions or have dreams of God, going about in white robes, and so on – and yet be ignorant, very ignorant, as to what the will of God is. So while it means one thing to call God’s name it is quite another matter to do His will.
The word will in the context of this sermon may be defined as meaning “desire” or “purpose”. It is of utmost necessity that a Christian should in the first instance know the will of God. For without this knowledge it will be impossible to do the pleasure of the Almighty Father. This, as a matter of fact, emphasizes the vital importance of knowledge. Yes, King Solomon stated: “Also, that the soul be without knowledge, it is not good” – Proverbs 19:2; see also Hosea 4:6.
God Almighty through the operation of his spirit in the prophets of old, Jesus Christ His beloved Son and his apostles, caused His will or purpose or desire, which men need to know and do to be clearly expressed in the Book of books – the Holy Bible.
In it there are divine laws and judgements through which we are able to know the things God allows His worshippers to do and those He forbids. Concerning the laws of God, Moses the prophet told the Israelites: “Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall ehar all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people” – Deuteronomy 4:6.
Also, there are in the Bible records of important events, which served as types of future things that God would do and which were designed to teach great lessons for the spiritual benefit of Christians in this last days – the most turbulent age in human history. In regard to such ancient happenings among the people of God, St. Paul wrote: “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.” – 1st Corinthians 10: 11; see also Romans 15: 4.
Apart from the psalms or songs of knowledge, the proverbs and other wise sayings in the Holy Scripture, there are prophecies and revelations of the sublime purpose of God towards mankind. And St. Peter stated: “We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: for the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men .of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” – 2 Peter 1: 19,21.
The doing of the will of God therefore calls for the keeping of His commandments and working in accordance with His purpose. King David delared: “I delight to do Thy will, O my God: yea, Thy law is within my heart.” (Psalm, 40: 8) This is true of everyone who is a faithful worshipper of God but more particularly David’s declaration was prophetic and typical of Jesus Christ’s determination to fulfil his mission on earth as purposed by the Almighty Father. – Hebrews 10: 7-10.
While Jesus Christ was on earth he lived up to expectation, and his resolution to do his Father’s will was manifest both in his utterances and deeds. He said: “I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.” – John 5: 30.
After Jesus Christ had declared himself as the bread of life, he said that all those whom his Father had given him would certainly come to him; and whoever came to him he would in no wise cast out. He then added; “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of Him that sent me.” -John 6: 35-38.
Furthermore, Jesus Christ told his disciples: “My meat is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish His work.” – John 4: 34.
Throughout the life of Jesus Christ on earth there was never a moment he fell away from allegiance to his Father, the Almighty God. Even at the crucial time of his crucifixion- that moment of the supreme test of fidelity-he maintained his subjection to the Will of the Father. Under the grip of human feelings consequent upon the persecutions of the wicked, Jesus prayed: “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.” And he prayed the second time, thus: “0 my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, Thy will be done.” (Matthew, 26: 38- 42) And because it was the will of the Father he was killed. Thus he tasted death for the redemption of humankind.
He is not a Christian who does not submit himself like Jesus Christ to the will of God. As a matter of fact, it will be impossible to attain the required degree of excellence in the practice of righteousness without following the example of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ who attached great importance to the doing of his Father’s will. – John 8: 29, 31, 32, 36; Matthew, 5: 20; Hebrews 12: 1-3.
On a certain occasion Mary, his mother and others of her children caused his speech to be interrupted because they wanted to speak to him. Someone in the c row d informed Jesus about this, but he turned to the man who brought the message and sa i d: “Who is my mother? and who are my brethren? And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.” – Matthew, 12:46-50.
It is because many people who claim to be worshipping God today do not really understand His will, that they have set at naught His commandments and trampled upon the principles of Christianity. Many of the priests and pastors who ought to lead the people in the path of truth and righteousness are themselves visionless or without understanding and they having been overreached by Satan do neglect their spiritual duties and are so spineless that they are be- come men-pleasers.
The other day, in this country a “juju festival” – a carnival of the pagans was reported to have ended with a church service at the place of worship belonging to one of the denominations in the main stream of orthodox Christendom. No true Christian can see such things without developing a feeling of revulsion in total condemnation. It was St. Paul who stated: “Can light consort with darkness? Can Christ agree with Belial, or a believer join hands with an unbeliever? Can there be a compact between the temple of God and the idols of the heathen?” – Read 2 Corinthians 6: 14-18. New English Bible.
There are also instances in which certain prominent churchgoers only for socIal advantages, undergo pagan rites and ceremonies so as to obtain chieftaincy titles. Some of these peo- ple who too profess to be Christians are brought to kneel before certain shrines to be blessed by juju priests and so forth. And in order to give the whole show a veneer of modernity, they also end up with a church service where certain “clerks in holy orders” who also pose as the servants of God and ambassadors of Christ give their share of ‘blessing’.
And there are cases of burial ceremonies, for which there can be no scriptural justification, that are allowed to be connected with church services.
Many people in this time of the last days are like the naturaI Jews who were enthusiastic in the service of God but for the fact that they did not know His will as shown by Jesus Christ in truth and faith, they practised their own righteousness instead of that of God. St. Paul wrote about them in this vein: “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God but not according to knowledge. For they, being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.” – Romans 10: 1-3.
No one should deceive himself as to think that whatever he docs in the name of God Almighty and Christ Jesus receives Their blessing. One may be called a “president”, a “prophet of the most holy order”, a “Senior Apostle”, a “vicar of Christ” and suchlike, and yet be as far from God as Satan the devil himself is if one’s claims are not based on truth as contained in the H0LY Scripture. And the mere fact that anyone claims to see vision or have a dream of God, or purports to do wonclers or heal the sick in the name of Christ does not in any way make him a prophet of God or qualify him to enter His Kingdom. What is important is the doing of the will of the Almighty Father.
Jesus Christ, knowing what false prophets and nominal Christians would do in his name simply to gain the praise of men and to deceive the gullible, said: “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesised in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” – Matthew, 7:21-23.
It is clearly stated in the Bible that even our prayers cannot be answered unless we say them in accordance with the will of God. “And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us: and if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.” – 1st John 5:14-15.
The need to understand the will of God, therefore, cannot be overstated. Exhorting the Roman Christians as to how they should dedicate themselves to the service of God, St. Paul stated: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” – Romans 12:1, 2.
And in St. Paul’s epistle to the Ephesians, he wrote: “Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.” – Ephesians 5:17, 18.
The will of God therefore is associated with the practice of all righteouness. Whatever conforms to the word of God as contained in the scriptures is His will. Thus the Holy Bible serves as a guide for Christians in determining what the will of God is. And the Psalmist said: “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” – Psalm, 119: 105; see also Proverbs 6:23.
There is blessing in doing the will of God. Jesus made it plain that it is those who do the will of the Almighty Father, will inherit His Kingdom. And John the apostle stated: “And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever” – in God’s Kingdom. – 1st John 2:17.