Obey God Rather Than Men

The title of this post comes from the Apostle Peter.  When he was commanded to stop preaching in the name of Jesus he declared to the Pharisees he said, “We must obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29)

When we hear those words today, I think that we get confused. I see folks flipping which things we are supposed to stand firm on and which things we should soft pedal. We get real testy about our opinions. We dig in our heels for our preferences. And then we shy away from talking openly about Jesus. Yet, this wasn’t what early believers were doing. Jesus came first. Rights, privileges, and opinions came last. In fact, the Apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians 9 that he makes himself a slave to everyone so that he could share Christ to everyone. (1 Corinthians 9:19-22)

So for the believers in the Bible, their obedience to God rather than men centered around Jesus. They wouldn’t compromise or bend when it came to Him. Other things could bend. They even joyfully embraced imprisonment for His truth. They would not soften or back pedal the message of Jesus.

The question I ask myself is – do I have this same commitment? Which do I hold strong for? Do I really hold out Jesus as the life of my life? When it comes to telling others about Jesus, do I have this commitment?  When it comes for standing for God’s righteousness, do I have this commitment?  If I am persecuted for the faith, will I respond like Peter?  When my world or culture declares that it will reject me if I don’t reject God’s truth, will I respond like Peter?

The point of course is that Peter, John, and the other disciples discovered something.  They discovered that Jesus is worth it.  He is worth the sacrifice.  He is worth the disdain and mockery of others.  He is worth whatever the cost.  He is our ultimate good.  Because of how wonderful He is, we won’t bend.  We won’t compromise truth.  We do it all for Jesus.

Something to think about,

Pastor John

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