“JESUS answered ‘for now this is how it should be, because we must do all that God wants us to do” (Matt 3:15 Contemporary English Version) There are things that God wants you and I to do which we must commit ourselves to doing. They are God’s will for us and we must do them notwithstanding the obstacles. “Jesus answered ‘Let it be this way for now. We should do all that are God’s will’” (Matt 3:15 New Century Version)
From the second translation, it is clear that all what God wants you and me to do is His will. And this verse says we must do all of them – not one of them, not part of them, not nearly all of them but all of them.
And I must quickly admit that this is not an easy task because not all of what God wants us to do is palatable; everything is not enjoyable. But we are forbidden from choosing what we prefer to do; we are to do all that is God’s will for us. However, since God created us as free moral agents, He does not impose His will on anyone. We are free to do contrary to His will. However, there are consequences for the choices we make.
Sometimes we don’t want to do what God wants us to do because of our ego – some things He wants us to do humble us. They make us look small before others.
Some other times we don’t want to do what God wants us to do because of another factor related to ego, which is selfish interest. Selfish interest sometimes hinders you and I from doing all what God wants us to do because others are the direct beneficiaries – not ourselves. “Why must I do it for him?” we query. The natural man is self-centred. Before we do it, we want to know “what is in it for me?” If our obedience will benefit others directly, we are not excited to obey. But the truth is that we are the greatest beneficiary when we obey God by doing what God wants us to do. “If you will only obey me, you will have plenty to eat.” (Is 1:19 NLT)
The King James Version says if you are willing and obedient, you will eat the good of the land. Therefore, our willingness and obedience every time will ultimately benefit us even if it does not look like that in the first instance.
Our focus should not be our comfort but His will. Even if doing what God wants you to do will take you out of your
comfort zone temporarily, do it, and you will reap the fruit of your obedience later which supersedes your present comfort and will compensate for the pains of your obedience.
Test for Jesus Christ In Matt 3, there was a test before Jesus and John the Baptist. It was the test of humility; it was also the test of doing the will of God. Jesus had abandoned his glory in heaven to become man. He relinquished his position in heaven to take up a lowly position on earth. The Bible puts it this way:
“You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.” (Phil 2:5-8 NLT)
This scripture tells us the contrast between what Jesus gave up in heaven and what he became on earth to save humanity. So as part of fulfilling his earthly ministry, we see Jesus, the Son of God; Jesus, the creator standing before his creature – John the Baptist to be baptized. Would he surrender himself in his humanity to be baptized by John or would he say no mortal man was fit to baptize the immortal God that he was (and is still)?
The baptism of John the Baptist was for those repenting of their sins but Jesus never sinned. Would he stoop low and join repentant sinners to be baptized by John? Jesus passed the test. He submitted himself for baptism by John to identify with sinners he had come to die for and to give support and endorsement to what John was doing “But Jesus said, ‘it should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires? So John agreed to baptize him’” (Matt 3:15 NLT 2nd Ed) If you were in Jesus’ shoes would you have done what he did? As the G.O, the
pastor, the chairman, the boss, would you have humbled yourself?
Test for John the Baptist
Are you ready to carry out all that God requires of you? John the Baptist, a relation of Jesus and six months older than him also faced a test. Before this stage, he had done some of what God wanted him to do by preaching the Kingdom of God and repentance from sin and baptizing people, and more important, testifying of Jesus. (Matt 3:11-12) Suddenly, Jesus, the man he had spoken glowingly of, the man who the starting of his ministry would cause his own ministry to fade away showed up to be baptized. He could have seen Jesus as a rival and snubbed him or refused to offer Jesus the platform to launch his ministry, but John the Baptist knew better.
Out of humility, he said in
Matt 3:14: “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?” (NKJV) The Book of John 1:32-34 records John saying, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He remained upon Him. I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God.” (NKJV)
Permit me to stop here this week and continue next week.
I believe you’ve been blessed reading this message. You need to read the remaining two parts of this message. As you respond to the Holy Spirit, your life will be changed. Jesus Christ and John the Baptist passed God’s tests for them. I pray that you will not fail God’s tests. You will do all that God wants you to do.
If you’re not born again, kindly say this prayer now: “0 Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I’m a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour and surrender my life to him today. I invite Jesus into my heart today. By this prayer, I know I’m saved. Thank you Jesus for saving me and making me a child of God”
I believe you’ve said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You’ll need to join a Bible believing, Bible teaching church in your area where you’ll be taught how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things becoming all God wants you to be. I’ll be glad to hear from you. May the Lord be with you.