Humility and Obedience

Humility and obedience are two characteristics which every Christian should have.

Modern man has a proud, self-satisfied attitude and thinks he can get along without God. Neither does he fear God nor does he respect God’s Word as an authority in his life. He is selfish and puffed up. Is it any wonder then that God does not hear the prayers of such people?

The most important requirement for knowing God is to fear or respect Him and to honor His Word. Psalm 111:10 tells us: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments. His praise endures forever.”

Man must realize that he is only dust and will return to dust when he dies. In James 4:14, we read: “… For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.”

However, if a person has received the Spirit of God in this life, he will inherit eternal life at his resurrection, which is a gift from God: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

We should be humble and show obedience, understanding that all the gifts and talents we possess were given to us by God.

If we approach God with such an attitude and if we acknowledge His power and authority over our lives, then He will hear us.

When Christ lived as a human being, He also feared or respected God, just as we should do. Hebrews 5:7 tells us, that “in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, [He] was heard because of His godly fear…”

An attitude of humility and fear of God is always essential in prayer. And by respecting God’s Word, we are obedient.

The requirement for an answered prayer is neglected and constantly disregarded by most professing “Christians.” Matthew 6:7 states, for example: “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.”

Very few people know the true God. Most do not look towards God as the authority in their lives. Instead, the society of this world with its morals, customs, traditions and religious practices have become their “god.”

God inspired Paul to write: “Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?” (Romans 6:16).

When we are obedient to the ways of sin that are practiced in this world, we are replacing the true God with society and its pagan customs!  God does not want “lip service.” He demands humility and obedience!  If one has not learned to fear and respect the true God and accept His Word as authority in our lives, then one cannot even start to know the true God in the first place.

In 1 John 2:4, we read: “He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”

So, how can people stubbornly refuse to keep God’s commandments and yet expect Him to hear their prayers? Peter gives us the following answer, “‘For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers; But the face of the LORD is against those who do evil’” (1 Peter 3:12).

Sin is the transgression of God’s law, as the Authorized Version accurately states in 1 John 3:4.  The New King James Bible translates it in this way: “Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.”

God will not hear the prayers of those who persist in sin and wickedness. If people were to obey God, they would receive answers to their prayers. In that case, God would not seem so far away and so unreachable.

If one goes to God with humility and a repentant attitude, and if one is determined to obey God, He will answer one’s prayers.

As true Christians, we can have extraordinary confidence that God will answer our prayers if we are humble and obedient. 1 John 3:22 confirms this: “And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.”

Humility and obedience are very closely related, since without humility one cannot have obedience. Both are crucial for a good relationship with God and with our neighbor. Therefore, obedience and humility are two qualities that every Christian must have.

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