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Why You Should Be Saying, “If the Lord Wills I will…”

If the Lord Wills

If the Lord wills… It’s the biggest IF in the world. The whole success of our spiritual walk with God is whether we do God’s will or not. I’m not talking about salvation, we all know what God’s will is concerning that.  At least I hope we do.  Let’s review it just in case.

Romans 10:9,10 If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead you shall be saved.  

For with the heart man believes unto righteousness and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

OK. Now that’s settled. What do we do after that. Anything we want? Anything we feel like doing? Of course not. We ‘ought” to be doing the Lord’s will.

“But we know what the Lord’s will is…” says a famous television preacher. “God wants us to prosper and be in health even as our souls prosper: he goes on. OK, I believe that’s God’s will for Christians including me. So if I want to move to California and start a movie company, all I have to do is believe, act and receive right? God will bless me because I’m operating his “law of believing.” All it takes is vision and faith.  Is that correct? Is that what you believe?

Take a look at this then…

James 4:13-16  Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.”

Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.

Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”

As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil.

God calls my example scenario “boasting.” Hmmm…. I better rethink this believe and receive thing.  Something’s wrong with it.  What IF God doesn’t want me to start a movie company but wants me to do something else? Will He still bless what I’m believing for and working toward? I’m not sure — you tell me.

I John 5:14,15  This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 

And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.

Ahhh… that’s the key — if we ask anything “according to His will” he hears us and grants our petition. That’s a lot different than believe it and receive it. That’s quite a change from “what you can conceive, you can achieve.” Let’s be honest here. God isn’t going to bless something He hasn’t authorized.  That’s the bottom line.

God Makes the Rain Fall on the Just and the Unjust

Matthew 5:35  That you may be the children of your Father who is in heaven: for he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

God has set certain laws in place that govern life. One of them is “as you sow, so shall you reap.”

Galatians 6:7  Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap.

The law of ‘giving and receiving’ is really this law stated in Galatians 6:7.  It has to do with much more than money. For example, if you give people heartache, you’ll eventually receive heartbreak back. If you steal, you’ll be stolen from. If you give generously, you will be given generously to. That’s the law of sowing and reaping.

The law that people seem the most confused about is what they call the law of believing and receiving. They look at the healing miracles Jesus did during his earthly ministry and say, “See — if you believe you receive.”  They then transfer this to anything they can imagine, as long as what they are imagining isn’t obviously evil.

Can we take a closer look?

Matthew 21:22  And all things, whatever you shall ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive.

That verse seems to give us a free ticket to whatever we want, whether it’s in the will of God or not. The ‘blanket’ interpretation of this verse is the result of not allowing the Word of God to interpret itself to us. Tell me, how does this verse fit with I John 5:14,15?  I’ll repeat those verses to make the comparison easy for you.

I John 5:14,15  This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 

And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.

Clearly both verses have to harmonize because Jesus said, “The Scripture cannot be broken.” (John 10:35). We cannot throw out I John 5 14 and 15 because we prefer Matthew 21:22! But this is how so many people read God’s Word! This is why there are so many contradictions in the Bible — not because they really exist in the Bible, but in people’s understanding of what the Bible is saying — or should I say in their lack of understanding?

The Scriptures have to agree. They cannot contradict each other if it’s the true Word of God. God is perfect and His Word is perfect. The prevailing thought in all of Scripture from Genesis through Revelation is God’s will being done on earth even as it is in heaven.

True Faith Is Based On What God Says

God has given us His written Word. God’s Word is revelation from God. It states God’s will very plainly. God’s agenda is the restoration of all things.

Acts 3:21  [Jesus] Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.

To bring that about, He has to save all people.

I Timothy 2:3-6  For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 

Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; 

Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

To accomplish this great feat, God calls on His people to help Him.

II Corinthians 5:17-19  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 

And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 

To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.

When your plans agree with God’s plans then you have the things you desire to bring whatever it is to pass. But let’s not jump to conclusions here just yet. Think about this for a moment:

God’s Word reveals God’s specific will for all in heaven and on earth:  for angels, “fallen” angels and mankind. But God’s will for your individual life must be revealed to you and will be as you walk with Him.

That’s how I understand the Scriptures, how about you?

To illustrate this point, I bring to your mind the life of the apostle Paul. After his conversion, Paul wanted to go into Asia to speak the good news. He was all enthusiastic, believing and positive, ready to do anything for the risen Lord Jesus who had appeared to him on the road to Damascus.  With such faith, doing the ministry of reconciliation in Asia surely would have been blessed by God, correct?

Wrong.

God told Paul not to go. However several months later, God told Paul to go into Asia and commence ministry there.

Paul’s timing was wrong even though it was God’s will that all men be saved, that Asia needed to hear the Word of the Lord and Paul was God’s man for the job.

This is why, even when we know what we are planning is in line with God’s written will, that we “ought to say” if the Lord wills we will do such and such.  Even when it’s right according to the Scriptures, there may be a reason why God doesn’t want it for you or for you now. Can you follow this clearly?

God doesn’t want to hold you back.  He wants a relationship with you so He can guide you into His specific will for your life right now.  This is what walking in or by the spirit is all about.

Romans 8:5-7  Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires.

The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. 

The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.

Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.

Make Your Life Pleasing to God

I want to encourage you to make your life pleasing to God by always seeking what God’s will is in every situation. Learn to say, “If the Lord wills I shall do this or that” instead of positively affirming what you are going to do without consulting God first. When what you want to do agrees with what God wants you to do, then God shall supply every need you have to get it done. When your will is aligned with God’s will, you will have the things you desire.

Praise God for His mercy and grace.

The original article is published here.

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