What is a doer of the word?
The bible tells us in James 1:22 to be doers of the word, not just hearers. And in our Free Indeed’s “Grace-Based Recovery” book, we read:
“I would be shocked if you told me that you didn’t know the right things to do in relationship to your particular addictive struggle. In other words, your problem is not ignorance. You know the difference between right and wrong, between sober and addicted. You know where that line is because you have crossed it many times. So don’t pretend that your struggle is with knowledge. It isn’t! Your struggle is with practice. You struggle with applying your will, by God’s grace, to do the right thing.”
It isn’t enough to “just know the truth”, God expects us to “do the truth.”
It’s time to put what we already know into practice!
Don’t be a fool
I love the New Living Translation of the passage we just read, where it tells us, “But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.”
We don’t want to be fools, we want to hear the word and be wise as one who built his house on the rock, and not on the sand as described in Matthew 7:24.
So, why don’t we just do it! Why don’t we just obey the Word of God and put His Word into practice?
What do we really believe?
As we are developing our integrity and accountability plans in “Free Indeed”, there are two “sets of lies” that we examine. One set are the lies we believe about ourselves, and the other set are those things that we say we believe, but when we examine our actions, we don’t really believe them.
Two of the big issues that fall into the latter set of lies are: the word of God, and the power of prayer.
We “say” that we love the Lord, but then we disobey His commandments. John 14:15 tells us that if we really love God, we will obey his commandments.
In Titus 2:11-12 it tells us, “For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age.”
Grace can save us
So, if we really believe God’s Word, why don’t we grasp-on to His grace and say “no” to all of the ungodliness and worldly passions that come our way? Because the truth of the matter is that we say we believe the Word of God, but our actions suggest that we don’t.
Hebrews 4:16 reassures us that we should approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy in our time of need.
In addition to God’s grace, we are told to “walk in the Spirit, by the Spirit” in Galatians 5:16-17 so that we should not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
So the question I must ask myself, the question that I must be honest about, is this: “Do I really believe what the Word of God has to say and am I in obedience to that Word?”
What does God desire from us?
God’s Word tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 to: “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” The Bible even goes so far as to say to meditate on His law day and night (Psalms 1:2-3) and to hide the word of God in our hearts (Psalms 119:9-16).
These things will help us to flee from youthful lusts, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace as described in 2 Timothy 2:22.
The Bible acknowledges that temptation is common for all mankind, but it reminds us that God is faithful to provide a way out of temptation so we can endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13).
Confession vs Healing
Did you know that it’s not enough to keep temptations to ourselves? In James 5:16 we are told to confess our sins to each other and pray for each other so that we may be healed (James 5:16).
However, it’s important to understand the difference between “forgiveness” and “healing”.
God forgives, confession heals! We must have both!
Move beyond your excuses
Now we come to our closing questions:
Do I really believe what the Word of God says, and if I say I do, then what’s stopping me from receiving all of God’s promises?
I’ll suggest that it’s time to move beyond our excuse: “I can’t beat my flesh”. When we are alone, that is true. But with the Word of God, with His grace and Spirit, with prayer and confession, we will have the victory!
God has given us His Word. He has given us the tools. Now we must choose. Now we must make the choice!
It’s time for decisions! It’s time to move beyond “trying”.
God is not going to fix all of our messes: we do reap what we sow. There is a powerful quote from Evan Miller (Apostolic Moral Purity) where he said: “You will never pray out of your life what God’s Word directs you to discipline out of your life.”
OUCH!, OUCH!, OUCH!
We don’t like those words: discipline and responsibility: confession and accountability!
My Brothers and my Sisters, it’s time to really believe the Word of God.
It’s time to become a doer of the word, and not hearers only!
It’s time to apply God’s tools for freedom and healing.
Using God’s Word, Prayer, and Fasting, along with Confession and Accountability, we can be free.