20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 20:9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 20:10 But the seventh day [is] the sabbath of the LORD thy God: [in it] thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that [is] within thy gates: 20:11 For [in] six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them [is], and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. Exodus 20:8-11 (Emphasis supplied).
Last week I said that those who keep the faith of Jesus will also keep the 4th commandment because the 4th commandment was given to insure that we keep the faith of Jesus. I say this because they both require us to do the same thing in order to be kept: The daily surrender of the will to Jesus. Daily surrender of the will to Jesus is required because the will is our control center: Whoever controls the will controls the life. Without daily surrender of our will it is impossible to please God because we are born with another power is in control of our will. That power is the prince of this world: Satan himself. Once again, notice what we are told in Ephesians 2:1-3:
2:1 And you [hath he quickened], who were dead in trespasses and sins: 2:2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. (Emphasis supplied).
Verse 3 tells us that we are born with sinful natures because Satan controls the flesh which controls our will (located in the mind). This is why the apostle Paul said in Romans 7:21-24:
7:21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. 7:22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 7:23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
In the 7th chapter of Romans Paul makes it clear why daily surrender to Jesus is an absolute must in order to keep the law (commandments) of God. In the 14th verse he tells us that by nature we are carnal which means that our will is a captive of Satan and no matter how much we may want to do God’s will we will end up doing his. It is guaranteed by law: The law of sin which is in our flesh (v.23). This is why Paul cries out in verse 24, who shall deliver me from this body of death. He does this to emphasize our absolute need of surrendering the will to Jesus daily. This is why Paul ends the chapter by saying in verse 25:
I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
I want to emphasize here that Paul says with his mind he now serves the law of God even though his flesh is still ruled by the law of sin. Paul said this because now Jesus was in control of his will through the indwelling of His Spirit which works by law to nullify the power of the law of sin in our flesh so the law of God can be fulfilled in the lives of those who now walk by the power of the Holy Spirit rather than by the power of their sinful flesh (see Romans 8:1-14).
So when Paul said, so then with the mind I myself serve the law of God, he is in essence saying the same thing that this quote says which was written in the 6th paragraph of an article written in 1894 in the journal The Review and Herald. It says:
The first step in the path of obedience is to surrender the will to God. (Emphasis supplied).
Both Paul and the author of this quote agree that there is a step we must take before we can obey the law of God and that step is to surrender the will daily to Jesus.
It is only after we take this step daily that we can do what Paul admonishes all the followers of Jesus to do as a result of taking that first step and that is:
2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure. Philippians 2:12&13 (Emphasis supplied).
Next week I will show that the reason God’s people have not yet entered the rest of God is because the majority of His people have not yet kept the 4th commandment which requires us to take the first step: Not just one day of the week but every day of the week (I know I promised to deal with the 4th commandment this week but I felt led to cover this information first). So, until next week I leave you with this portion of scripture to ponder and pray over:
4:18 But the path of the just [is] as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. 4:19 The way of the wicked [is] as darkness: they know not at what they stumble. Proverbs 4:18&19 (Emphasis supplied).