Whole-Hearted Obedience

Listen to the message here. Watch it here.

This week we are back in our series called Joshua: Presence & Promise. We saw the story of Caleb asking for the land God had promised him. We saw his conversation with Joshua in Joshua 14, and we looked back at its origins in Numbers 13 & 14.

We saw several realities at play in this passage. The three main themes we saw running throughout the passage were:

True faith is anchored in God’s word.
Again and again Caleb goes back to what God said as the basis for what he is asking and hoping in. It wasn’t about his desires or ideas–it was all about what God himself had said.

3 ways we see that play out in our lives:

  • Our knowing who God is, worshipping him, and following Jesus are tethered to how God reveals himself in the Bible.
  • A general knowledge and familiarity with God’d word that permeates our thoughts & desires.
  • Major decisions are guided more by the truth in God’s word than preferences or circumstances.

True faith is characterized by whole-hearted obedience.
Real faith in God isn’t demonstrated by us saying we have faith. It is demonstrated by doing what God says. True faith always leads to obedience.

When we says “whole-hearted obedience” we mean at least two things:

  • Doing all that Jesus says > not partial obedience or when it’s convenient–what Jesus says, how he says it, when he says it.
  • Loving Jesus the most > not obeying out of duty, but out of gladness and delight because we love & trust Jesus.

Whole-hearted obedience is rooted in deep faith that God will accomplish his good purposes.
Whole-hearted obedience isn’t about trying really hard to obey. It’s not even really about behavior. Whole-hearted obedience is really about belief & trust. When we really believe God is who he says, and believe what he says in his word, it motivates us to obey. So whole-hearted obedience is really about knowing, loving, and trusting in Jesus.

Discussion Questions:

  • As you read the passage and listen to the sermon, what do you sense God saying to you? To our church?
  • What things encouraged you? What things challenged you?
  • What sins do you need to turn away from? How can we help each other do that?
  • Do you have consistent patterns in your life that anchor you in God’s word? If not, what is keeping you from it?
  • As you inventory your life, is it clear (to you and to others) that you love Jesus the most? Why do you answer the way you do? If the answer is no, what is keeping you from it?
  • What step do you need to take this week to pursue whole-hearted obedience?