The Will Of God - His Precept†††††††††††††

1 John 3:23

Godís will of precept is his revealed will, that which he requires of men, that which he commands us to do. It is the duty and responsibility of all men, women, and children to obey the will of God revealed in his precepts. When a person in authority expresses his will to those under his authority, his revealed will is to them a law, a command, a precept, which they are responsible to obey. That which God has revealed to be his will and pleasure is to us a precept, a law, a command which we are responsible to obey. Godís will of command, or precept, made known to us, is our rule of duty (Eccles. 12:13). In the day of judgment God will judge every man by that which has been revealed to him. No one will be held accountable except for that knowledge of Godís will that is within his reach. The moral requirements of Godís law are revealed to all men by the light of nature. Every man is, by virtue of creation convinced of Godís wisdom and power, leaving all without excuse (Rom. 18-20). The revelation of nature is not a saving revelation; but it is, as Paul states it, sufficient to leave all ďwithout excuse.Ē All men are also convinced of their own depravity and sin by the law of God written upon their hearts and consciences by the finger of God in creation (Rom. 2:12-15). Even the most heathen, barbaric tribesmen of ancient cultures, have demonstrated a knowledge that God is and that he requires of man that he must love God supremely, love his neighbor as himself, and find atonement for his sins. No one has ever, in all of history, discovered an irreligious tribe or nation. Religion is as natural to man as water is to rain, because God has stamped upon all a God consciousness that simply cannot be erased. God revealed his will more perfectly upon Sinai in what men call the Ten Commandments (Ex. 20:1-17). The decalogue, that which is commonly referred to as the moral law, reveals what God requires of all men in their relations to God and to one another. Though in Christ we are free from the yoke of the lawís rule and its curse, these requirements are never altered. The ceremonial law given to the nation of Israel was Godís revealed will concerning worship in the Old Testament. It began when God commanded Israel to observe the Passover (Ex. 12) and ended when Christ our Passover was sacrificed for us, when the hand writing of the ordinances was nailed to the cross (I Cor. 5:7; Col. 2:14). These divisions of Godís law into the moral and ceremonial law, it must be pointed out, are purely of human invention. The law of God is one; and its purpose is to point us to and shut us up to salvation by Christ alone. Since Christ has come and fulfilled all the requirements and types of the moral and ceremonial law, the revealed will of God to all men is the gospel (1 John 3:23) Because no man is capable of fulfilling the righteousness of God revealed in the law, Christ fulfilled the law in the place of sinful men. All believers fulfill the righteousness of the law by faith in him (Rom. 8:2-4; 3:31).


Don Fortner