And we want to look at what we have been considering in our last two studies as to how we can find the perfect will of God for our life in the different decisions we have to make in life. This is the way our life can be brought to maximum effectiveness for God.
We have been looking at a number of questions that we need to ask ourselves which would help us to be sure concerning God’s will for our life. In this new covenant age, God doesn’t speak to us through prophets or with voices from heaven primarily but through our renewed mind. The bible says in Romans 12:2, “Be not conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what that will of God is which is good, acceptable and perfect.” And when we are in doubt concerning God’s will we need to ask ourselves this questions, and we already considered 7 of them, let me repeat them for you benefit. First of all this question, “is it contrary to any of the teachings of Jesus, and the apostles, or to the spirit of the New testament as far as I know?” The second question that we need to ask ourselves is, “Is it something I can do with a clear conscience?” A third question, “Is it something I can do for the glory of God?” A fourth question, “Is it something I can do in fellowship with Jesus?” Fifth, “Can I ask God to bless me as I do it?” Sixth, “Will my doing it blunt my spiritual edge in any way?” And seventh, “Will it be spiritually profitable and edifying to the best of my knowledge?”
Now we go to the eighth question. We need to ask ourselves when we are considering a course of action, “Would I be happy if I were found doing this at the moment when Jesus returns to earth.” That means supposing while you’re doing this particular thing, whatever you’re planning to do, Christ returns. Would you be ashamed of what you’re doing or would you be perfectly happy that the Lord found you doing that when he returned? 1 John 2:28 says, “Now little children abide in Him so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink away from Him in shame at His coming.” There are people who are going to shrink away from Him in shame because they have done so many things that have dishonored the Lord. So many things that they would not want to be found doing if Christ return to that moment. So he says “Little children abide in him so that if he appears suddenly we’ll have confidence.” “Lord here I am ready.” So that’s a good question to ask ourselves. Would I be happy if I were found doing this at the moment when Jesus returns to earth? Now don’t think that if it’s Christian work or something like that definitely Jesus will be happy if I’m doing that. Well there are so many types of Christian work in the world today and you need to know what particularly the Lord wants you to do.
A ninth question, which is a very important question particularly for younger people, young spiritually I mean, those who are not really mature in the Lord themselves, “What do wiser and more mature brothers think about this?” Let me show you three verses from the book of Proverbs. In Proverbs 11:14 it says, “Where there is no guidance the people fall but in abundance of councilors there is deliverance or victory.” Where there are many councilors there is a safety because people can tell you different aspects of that particular matter that you’re considering which you may not thought of yourself, particularly spiritual aspects, and so it’s good for us to consult with wiser and mature brothers. It says also in Proverbs 15:22, “Without consultation plans are frustrated but with many councilors they succeed.” So if you’re fortunate enough godly councilors who can advise you, it’s good to get their opinions and see what they think about your course of action. We don’t have to become slaves to their opinion but it’s good to take their advice. Proverbs 24:6, “By wise guidance you will wage war, and in abundance of councilors there is victory.” So there is a great value in considering what other people think about this particular course of action.
Another question that we need to ask ourselves is, “This particular thing I’m thinking of doing, will my doing it bring dishonor to God’s name if others know about it or ruin my testimony if others know about it?” Maybe you’re considering an action which other people will not be able to find out. Maybe it’s a secret thing. Maybe it’s a thing in which there’s very little likelihood of anybody discovering it. But that’s not the point. The point is if other people discovered it. Will it bring dishonor to God’s name what you’re doing right now? Or if other people discovered it will it ruin your testimony? So if you say, “Oh well only as long as I keep it secret it’s okay but if others come to know about it, God’s name will be dishonored, my testimony will be ruined.” Then you know perhaps the best course of action for you is to avoid doing that altogether because it’s something shady. It’s something that you know will bring dishonor to God’s name if other people know about it, and so you don’t want other people to know about it, you try your best to conceal it.
Another question is, number 11, “Will my doing it cause others to stumble if they know about it?” Maybe fortunately other people don’t now what you’re doing or planning to do. But supposing they did know, would it cause them to stumble? Or you can say like Cain, “Well I’m not my brother’s keeper.” But the Lord said you are. We are our brother’s keeper. Paul said that, “If something I do is going to cause another person to stumble or fall away, I won’t do it at all in my life. I’ll just avoid it altogether.” And so a very good question to ask is, “Will my doing this cause others to stumble if they know about it.” You see for example in Romans 14:13, it says, “Let us not judge one another but not put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.” And 1 Corinthians 8:9 says, “Take care that this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to the weak.” So there are two things we need to ask if other people know about this, “Will it dishonor God’s name?” “Will it cause them to stumble?” If it’s going to dishonor God’s name, then we should avoid it. 2 Corinthians 8:21 says, “That we are careful not only for what is right for the side of the Lord and honorable, but also what is in the side of men.” It’s also important because we should not cause anyone in the world to stumble by the way we live or do something. Paul said I will not even eat meat if it cause other people to stumble.
And the last question we could ask ourselves is, “Do I feel free in my spirit to do it.” Ultimately that is the way we finally deciced after having asked all these questions, we finally ask “Do I feel free in my spirit to do it.” 1 John 2:27 says, “You have an anointing with teaches you about all things and just as it taught you, you abide in him.” You don’t need anyone to teach you. That anointing will teach you everything that you need to know. That’s the Holy Spirit witnessing within our spirit that something is in line with God’s will.
So as you ask yourselves these 12 questions, you will come to know very clearly in your mind whether some course action you’re considering is God’s will or not. Let’s go through that again. First of all, “Is it in line with the teachings of Jesus, and the apostles, and the New Testament, is it contrary to any of their teachings as far as I know?” Second, “Is it something I can do with a clear conscience? Third, “Is it something I can do for the glory of God?” Fourth, “Is it something I can do in fellowship with Jesus?” Fifth, “Can I ask God to bless me as I do it?” Sixth, “Will my doing it blunt my spiritual edge in any way?” Seventh, “Will it be spiritually profitable and edifying to the best of my knowledge?” Eighth, “Will I be happy if I were found doing it at the moment when Jesus returns to earth.” Ninth, “What do wiser and mature brothers think about it?” Tenth, “Will my doing it bring dishonor to God’s name or ruin my testimony if others know about it?” Eleventh, “Will my doing it cause others to stumble if they know about it?” And finally, “Do I feel free in my spirit to do it?”
After asking these questions if you can get a positive right answer, the right answer to these questions, then we can move forward because the bible says in Roman 8:6, “The mind of the spirit is life and peace.” You’ll have peace in your spirit as you move forward and you can fulfill God’s perfect will.
This is part of the Basic Christian Teachings Series, a set of 72 short messages presented by Zac Poonen. You can download the audio mp3 files or listen to Basic Christian Teachings by clicking here.