A Bible Devotion

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Some Commands Take Precedence Over Other Commands

MATTHEW 22:37-38 NLT 37 Jesus replied, "'You must love the LORD your God...' 38 This is the first and greatest commandment.

Some commands are more important and carry more weight than others.

Not all of Scripture is commands. Mostly it could be called rules (or precepts) for living. In some situations these rules may conflict with one another. When they do, we must know which ones take precedence.

Unless you recognize this, you might find yourself confused when facing an important decision.

The Bible says children should obey their parents. But children should not obey an order to forget God.

EPHESIANS 6:1 NLT 1 Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.

The Bible says we are to obey government leaders. But what if you live in a country where it is illegal to be a Christian? Clearly, God is a higher authority than human government, so there are times when a believer may have to disobey human government.

TITUS 3:1 NLT 1 Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers. They should be obedient, always ready to do what is good.

ACTS 5:29 NLT 29 But Peter and the apostles replied, "We must obey God rather than any human authority.

As these examples should make obvious, there may be times we have to ignore one Scriptural instruction in order to obey a more important one.

We should obey our spiritual leaders, such as a pastor. But those leaders are human and can be wrong. If they tell you to do things contrary to God you should not blindly follow them.

HEBREWS 13:17a NLT 17 Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God.

When we work for someone we are to obey them. But we should not obey if asked to do something illegal or immoral.

COLOSSIANS 3:22 NLT 22 Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything you do. Try to please them all the time, not just when they are watching you. Serve them sincerely because of your reverent fear of the Lord.

As an extreme example, a teenage boy might be in a situation where God, government, his parents, his boss, and his pastor might all be telling him to do something different. Which one should he obey? There is New Testament Scripture telling him to obey them all!

Obeying God is always the ultimate priority. If and when we are ever faced with such decisions, we should turn to God for guidance and follow His direction.

SAY THIS: Obeying God takes precedence over everything.


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