Monday, June 15, 2015
Parts of the Same Whole
Think of faith and obedience as travel companions heading to the same destination—namely, to please and glorify the Lord. You cannot have one without the other. They grow simultaneously as they are practiced but will wither if neglected.I think that is true of so many of the attributes of the Christian life. They comprise a whole, we cannot pick and choose, we have to buy into the whole package.
Without faith, humility is impossible because to allow humility into us we have to believe that God will protect us. Without humility love is impossible becasue we cannot count the other as more important unless we are humble. Without obedience we do not know that faith is real. And so it goes.
There are several "ladder" passages in scripture. (e.g. 2 Peter 1:5-8 - Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love.) In these passages, one trait leads to another leads to another. It is inescapable and for one to be real they all have to be real. We cannot jump from faith to true and deep love, must proceed through all the characteristics.
Too often we tell people only about the stuff they want to hear about and skip the steps and co-travelers. Is it any wonder then that the gospel is so hard to find in our culture?
co-travelers faith love obedience