Jesus answered them, “My teaching isn’t mine but is from the one who sent me. If anyone wants to do his will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own. (John 7:16-17)
Pastor John’s Notes:
There is a prerequisite to understanding the teachings of Christ: We must first want to do the will of God. If we desire to do God’s will, then it will be obvious that Jesus’ teachings are from God. They will ring true to us, and when we hear them, they will reside within us. His teachings will become our rule of life. If, however, we are skeptical or have some other purpose in mind, Jesus’ teachings will simply pass through and never abide.
So take a moment and ask yourself this question: “Do you truly wish to do God’s will or are you living with other purposes in mind?” If we were to be honest, we would have to admit that we struggle with other purposes. We have our own ideas about what our life should be like. Our natural hope is that God would fulfill our will, not the other way around. We are also probably smart enough to remember that the will of God for Jesus was to endure the cross. We fear that there might be a cross somewhere for us, perhaps not a literal cross, but some terrible burden that might be the will of God.
But if we are able to surrender our worldly hopes that life will be picture-perfect and if we are willing to trust that whatever comes to pass, God will give us the necessary strength and wisdom to be victorious, then the teachings of Christ will ring true for us. We will meditate on them, and they will take deep root within our soul. We will find the true life God intends for us to live, and it will be deeply satisfying.
Lord Jesus, I do desire to do the will of God, though I confess I wrestle with other ideas. By your Spirit, set my soul at rest. Enable me to trust in the good will of God for my life. Let your teachings ring true for me, and let them find a permanent place in my soul.