We could not take the credit for any obedience we fulfill. Obedience to God is never by might nor willpower alone but by the Spirit ot God. Yes, we could not obey God unless our own will is in complete submission to God, but even that is achieved through the working of the Holy Spirit. God works in a surrendered life, yet even in the process of surrendering, God’s Spirit is there mightily working to soften our mind and heart to submission.
When I came to know Jesus Christ as my Lord and my Savior, that was the point in my life when I realized, I am nothing without God. I also realized how great and deep is His love for me that all I could do was cry in surrender to Him. It was the moment when I felt how sorry I was for every sin I committed and how joyful I was that He redeemed me and I have life in Him. Peace and joy washed over me. It is true when they say, “The moment you encounter Jesus Christ, your life will never be the same again.” Everything I have experienced from that moment on up to now are all part of the working of His Spirit in me. The more I grow in my faith, the more I realized I could never rely on my own strength and knowledge to faithfully obey God. His Spirit alone can lead me to the right path and could sustain me to obey the will of God.
“For it is God who works in you both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”– Philippians 2:13 (WEB)
God’s Spirit enables us to obey the will of God. It empowers us to action and move in obedience to the will of God. It emboldens us to do what God requires us to do that even difficult tasks become easier and fulfilling for us. Without the enabling power of the Holy Spirit in the believer’s life, there is no force to spur the believer to walk in faith and obey with trust in God.
This is exactly how Gideon was able to obey God’s will in his life. Even from the very start, Gideon was doubtful if it was really God who sent the message to him to lead Israel (Judges 6:17:22). And when God commanded him to destroy the altar of Baal and cut the Asherah, the idols worshipped by Israelites, Gideon was too afraid to do it during the day in fear of the people that he destroyed them at night (Judges 6:25-28). These occassions give us a glimpse of the weak nature of Gideon. But when the Midianites, the Amalekites, and the children of the east assembled themselves against Israel (Judges 6:33), Gideon suddenly was ready to lead them. The reason was this.
“But Yahweh’s Spirit came on Gideon, and he blew a trumpet; and Abiezer was gathered together to follow him. He sent messengers throughout all Manasseh, and they also were gathered together to follow him. He sent messengers to Asher, to Zebulun, and to Naphtali; and they came up to meet them.”– Judges 6:34-35 (WEB)
God’s Word says that the Spirit of the LORD came on Gideon and Gideon gained the trust of the men of Israel. They followed Gideon to be their leader. I love how the English Standard Version (ESV) of the Bible worded it —— “the Spirit of the LORD clothed Gideon”. Gideon’s fear did not overtake him. His doubts did not hinder him from obeying the call of God. Gideon obeyed the will of God because he was clothed by the Spirit of God. God’s Spirit came on him and Gideon was able to do what he could not do by his own might or willpower.
Fear and doubt may obscure our faith in God but when we are clothed by the Spirit of the LORD, we are able to surrender to His will. His Spirit causes us to obey God. His Spirit makes us overcomers. His Spirit makes us strong. He gives us might to face the troubles and trials of life.
Experience God’s mighty works in your life by walking instep with His Spirit and relying on Him fully.
“Don’t be drunken with wine, in which is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs; singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord…”– Ephesians 5:18-19 (WEB)
“If we live by the Spirit, let’s also walk by the Spirit.”– Galatians 5:25 (WEB)