The Obedience of Faith

Second Peter 1:3-4 says God “…has granted to us His precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.” In this verse we are told that because of God’s promises we can become an active partaker of the divine nature (i.e.; we become more and more holy in our life’s practice), having escaped the corruption of the world. We become a partaker in God’s nature by believing the promises of God, and then living in accordance with God’s Word because we believe it. For, our obedience to God’s word is like the hand of faith that reaches out and holds onto the promises of God. Our obedience to God’s word is like the legs that walk by faith on the path of God’s promises. Obedience to God’s word is one way that we receive the gift of His promises. Like an eager child at a birthday party opening her gifts, the child of God receives the precious gifts that her Father bought for her, when she eagerly obeys the commands and precepts of His word.
Saving-faith is the supernatural ability to trust and obey God; thus securing the fulfillment of the promises, which the Lord has made to us in His word. For example, the Christian believes the promise of God that “…if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). Therefore, she publicly confesses her belief in Christ as Lord in baptism (which is the God ordained practice of one’s public confession of Christ- Matthew 28: 18-20; Acts 2:38-39). Her belief in Christ motivates her baptism. In other words, her inward unseen faith in God manifests itself in the outward act of obedience- baptism. In confessing our faith in Christ and believing that God raised Him from the dead we are assured of our salvation based on the promise of God that we will be saved from so doing. But, clearly, this does not mean that we are saved, as a result, of our obedience, rather our obedience is the result of our believing. You see, our belief in God is like the first domino in a row of dominoes: we believe God, so we obey God, which results in receiving the blessings that God promises to all those who believe Him. Perhaps you are beginning to understand the Biblical concept of the obedience of faith.
In saying that we are called to walk in the obedience of faith in order to secure the promised blessings of God, we are not saying that we must walk in perfect obedience to God (for no-one living can do that), nor are we saying that we must earn God’s blessings to receive them. We have already established the fact that everything that we receive from God we have received freely and undeservedly (by grace). However, we are saying that we receive God’s blessings by believing that He does give blessings to those that trust in Him, and we are saying that real trust in God results in an effort to obey Him.

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