When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word, What a glory He sheds on the way; While we do His good will, He abides with us still, And with all who will trust and obey. Trust and obey — for there’s no other way. To be happy in Jesus — but to trust and obey!”
– John Sammis
When we look at the life of Jesus, we see a life lived in obedience to God!
The Hebrew word for “obey” is the same word used for “hear.” In order to “hear” God when He speaks to us it involves (l) our physical sense of hearing, and understanding what we’ve heard. God speaks to us through human being and through human events; (2) responding to what we’ve heard, and understood, in faith, trusting that God’s requests are always right and that God’s demands are always in our best interest; (3) hearing leads to faith and trust leads to obedience!
Jesus learned obedience at home! He heard God speak to him through his parents. From Joseph he learned the value of hard work; learned honesty and fair dealing with all people; learned to have faith in God and faith in other people; learned reverence for God; learned that life is sacred; learned to stand by your convictions — to follow and obey God.
From Mary, Jesus learned kindness and gentleness; learned to have compassion for the needy, the helpless and the homeless; learned how to care for those who had been hurt.
From the Synagogue/Church, Jesus learned that it was here that he could ask questions and could expect to receive answers concerning the deep concerns of life. For it was at the age of 12 that Jesus was found in the Temple asking questions of the Priests and Teachers.
Jesus knew that obedience is more than hearing and learning; obedience is acting on what one has heard! Jesus heard and obeyed! Jesus saw and followed! Jesus learned to say “Yes” to God; whatever the Father asked him to do, Jesus always did it!
Jesus heard God’s call to be baptized. So, he left home, went to the River Jordon, and was baptized. Jesus saw the need for disciples. So, he was led to call twelve men to be his followers, his friends, his inner circle. Jesus heard the cries of the blind, the lame, the hungry and the hurt, the outcasts.
So, He Fed them, he reached out and touched them, he healed them. Jesus heard God’s call to be the Sacrificial Lamb. So, Jesus went willingly to the Cross to die for your sins and for mine.
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus agonized over the Cross; yet, he accepted God’s decision as being the right way to bring about atonement for Sin. Jesus faced Death, knowing that his Father had power over both Sin and Death.
Jesus was not afraid to die, because he trusted that his Father would raise him up to life again! Jesus heard God, trusted God, and obeyed God!
By Dr. Don Kuehle
(Dr. Don Kuehle is a retired United Methodist pastor in Missouri.)