For it is God Who is working in you, enabling you both to desire and to work out His good purpose.
When God gave the Law through Moses He knew man’s fallen sin-nature would develop a spirit of confidence in self – rather than humble dependence upon God. The standard God set to regulate man’s behaviour was perfect – but God did not supply the way or means for man to achieve His standard – so man inevitably failed. God’s intention was that man would fulfil the righteous requirements of the Law in dependence upon Him – rather than relying on his own abilities, strength or wisdom.
God knew that sinful man could never achieve the perfection that the Law required, but Israel confidently announced – all that the Lord has spoken to us, we will do! Exodus 19:8 This worthy pronouncement to do the will of God sounds commendable to the ear of fallen man – but it displays man’s pride, and demonstrates independence from God. God in His wisdom knew that it was needful for man to try to be perfect in his own strength and fail, to realise he was unable to reach the perfection God required.
The apostle Paul realised that it was the Law that showed him his sin. He would not have known that coveting was wrong if the Law had not said, “You must not covet.” King Saul was also a prideful man who tried to address the problem of life in his own fleshly strength, rather than depending on God’s provision and trusting His word. The Galatians were a group of believers who demonstrated pride, rebellion and independence from God, by insisting that the righteous requirements of the Law should be achieved by human merit – having failed to learn God’s vital lesson.
And when we attempt in our own strength to meet our own needs or try to reach God’s standard through self-confidence in our own abilities – we will also fail. As time passed, the people of Israel became more filled with self-righteousness, Righteous independence rather than God-dependency was the garment they wore.
Self-dependency rather than humble dependence on God was the inevitable result, but as the sin of pride increased so also the grace that flowed from God multiplied. It was amidst the call to repent that many in Israel recognised the need to change.. to turn from their prideful ways and so they called out – what shall we do? What shall we do to work the works of God? John 6:28 – how can we change our ways? Christ’s answer was simple – This is the work of God, He replied:– That you believe on Him Whom God has sent – John 6:29
That’s it!!! Believe on Jesus Christ. What an incredible contrast to that which was required of the Law… Under Law – man was responsible to do all God commanded – but could not, Under Law – prideful man was drawn to self-dependence – not God-dependence. But under Grace man has to believe – to believe on Him Whom God has sent.. and from that point on – it is God Who does the work in US.
God has made Himself responsible to carry out His good work in US. God has purposed to create one-new-man.. that is the body of Christ. God has promised to live in the one new man in Christ (not the old sinful man) and that one new man is to live in a state of perfect dependence upon the Lord his God. God is working in you, enabling you both to desire and work out His good purpose. God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him.
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