Thou shalt copy!
Reading: Hebrews 11:7-19
"As by one man's disobedience many were made sinners,
so also by one man's obedience many will be made righteous" (Rom 5:19)
Obedience is taught as well as caught. Because the children of disobedience outnumber the children of obedience and we are invariably surrounded by the former, we get easily imbibed with a spirit of disobedience (Eph 2:2). The most effective means to unlearn the ways of disobedience is to learn from those who walk(ed) in obedience (Col 3:6-8).
Of the clouds of forerunners whom we can emulate to walk in obedience, Jesus is the supreme example (Heb 12:1). We are called to closely study Him and watch Him (Heb 3:1,2). The obedience of Jesus was not intermittent but consistent. He was obedient "until death." His life from beginning to end was characterised by obedience. He obeyed His Father on the banks of River Jordon, in the wilderness of temptation, in the Garden of Gethsemane, on the Mount of Golgotha, and everywhere. No spot on earth was desecrated by Him by steps of disobedience. Let this mind of Christ, the willing mind of obedience, be in us also! (Phil 2:5,8). Let us "obey always!" (v12).
The 11th Chapter of Hebrews is called God's Hall of Fame. It's filled with portraits of those who excelled in obedience to God in their generations. Noah obeyed God amidst mockers (Heb 11:7). Abraham obeyed God leaving comforts (v8). Joseph obeyed God against allurements (v22). Moses obeyed God against affluence (v24). Daniel obeyed God against threats. The disciples obeyed God amidst persecutions.
of obedience run not only all over the Bible but also throughout Church
history. Amy Carmichael (1867-1951) obeyed God's call and came to India.
William Carey (1761-1834) obeyed God's call and came to India. David
obedience took him to Africa. Adoniram Judson's
(1788-1850) obedience landed him in Burma. Hudson Taylor (1832-1905)
sailed to China in obedience to God's call. Sadhu Sundersingh (1889-1929?)
(inset) walked all over India with the gospel because his sole aim was to
obey God. Mary Slessor (1848-1915) would not have chosen to work among the
cannibals if she had not wanted to obey God. Obedience to God cost Graham
Staines (1941-1999) his life and that of his sons. It's again obedience
that still keeps his wife Gladys Staines where he was burnt alive by
ungrateful people. Let's be always inspired by these forerunners!
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