Slightly Obsessed #202 A Portrait of Faith: Living to Please God

If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.

– Galatians 1:10

The Scriptures tell us it is impossible to please God without faith.

But how does pleasing God present evidence of our faith to a dying world?

In Hebrews 11, the “faith chapter” describes acts of faith recorded in the Bible and defines faith as the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Since our faith is the concrete evidence of the unseen world, let’s continue to examine what that evidence might look like. This week we look at the image of faith, as expressed by a second quality:

A desire to please God.

The longing to do what pleases Him comes from the active work of the Holy Spirit in our lives as He cleanses our heart and directs us upward. We no longer find pleasure in serving ourselves and sin. Our joy is now found in honoring our Father in heaven and our Lord Jesus. The concrete outflow of that heart change is seen in our actions and words.

How do we please God?

  1. Believe He exists.

  2. Trust that He will honor and reward our search for Him.

  3. Learn what He asks of us in His Word.

  4. Respond accordingly.

In 1 Thessalonians 4:1-4, Paul issued a plea to the Christians to strive to please God with their lives, and he particularly addressed the issue of purity.

Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more. For you know what commandments we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor….

A clean heart is God’s gift to us through the sacrifice of His Son. Living to please Him is our gift back to Him. It is the outward expression of an inward change, evidence for all to witness.

 

Without faith it is impossible to please Him,

for he who comes to God must believe He is

and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.

– Hebrews 11:6

 

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