BLOG––Encouraged by Faith

Unwilling or God Willing

Posted by Scott Morris on

Disapproval is a default position programmed into personalities by lifelong practice. This is not love. It is not grace. It is unforgiving, unwilling to extend the saving grace of God to those in need of it. Disapproval is a modeled behavior. Friends and relatives influence young people by demonstrating their habitual perspective on others. The faults of others are noted and commented upon by both words and attitudes, tones of voice, facial expressions and posture.

Blessed is the child whose father and mother demonstrated love toward others through attitudes of grace and forgiveness. When modeling kindness and patience toward others, parents lay a firm foundation for a life of loving kindness that does not automatically condemn others for their imperfections.

It is not necessary to approve of sin in order to forgive a sinner. God forgave the sins of people yet unborn, those who would love Him, believe Him and obey Him. The sins of people who may not be born for many more ages of mankind are covered by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. The sin is never approved, but the sinner is always loved.

By the will of God we are approved, not because of our perfection or holy righteousness but because we are made in his perfect image. Perfect holiness is impossible for us to sustain for long, but God is the perfect Father for the messy, selfish, rude and rebellious children of men. Such children require understanding and loving discipline. We may deserve severe punishment sometimes, but that often comes as a natural consequence of our behavior. God never stops loving us because we are sinners. He extends his saving love to his children precisely because his children are sinners! We would be forever lost if He did not.

Since we have such a loving and forgiving Father, we also have a perfect model for how we should think of others. We all know any number of people whose behavior is unacceptable. They are children of God in need of his loving grace. We are the children of God already reposing in his loving arms. Jesus said to us “Go and make disciples worldwide, immersing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and teaching them to be obedient to my will.” (from Mt. 28:19-20)

What disciplines equip us to carry out this great commission? Do the disciplines of godly parents form the basis of your obedience? Did you learn to love and show mercy as a very young child? If you did, you may thank God for a gift of incomparable worth. This is a strong foundation for your own ministry. Were you the beneficiary of a Sunday school where you learned the formative principles of righteous living? Bible stories have been an essential means of presenting the Father, the Son, and their Spirit of Holiness to those not fortunate to have had a childhood church home. Are you obedient to the Will of God in many ways? If so, you are already prepared to show others the Way. Do you enjoy a loving and nurturing church home now? This is an environment conducive to discipleship for young and old, and you are in a position to extend an offer of godly hospitality to those who need it as much as you ever did.

We live in a world governed by ungodly principles. It often seems that godliness is hated and disapproved in every situation of life. We are under assault, no doubt, but do not be deceived. The enemy behind the assault is not the person expressing the disapproval. It is the Power of Darkness that wars against the Kingdom of Heaven. Consider it pure joy, my brethren, when you encounter such trials, for they are evidence of your worthiness of such attacks. Bless those who curse you and be kind to those who abuse you, and know that your suffering is not comparable to the suffering of Jesus who endured much worse for our sake, and died. 

Let us give up unwillingness and disapproval, and begin to dispense grace and loving kindness to those whose souls are in desperate need of the rescue we ourselves received.

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