The Lord God has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious; I turned not backward. Isaiah 50:5
At some point in the believer’s life, the word of God was heard, the truth of salvation was realised and the walk with the Lord began. Sadly, not everyone that starts the walk will continue walking to the end. Maybe the rules appear too harsh, the lifestyle too restrictive or the teaching too demanding. This happened during Jesus’ ministry. People followed, they listened, they followed on, they listened, but then something shifted. The message that had once opened their ears now burned them and ‘many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him’ (John6:66).
We may, of course, not even realise that we are being rebellious; Saul certainly didn’t. The Lord guided and directed him in battle and made him a great king. Along the way, Saul decided to amend God’s instruction for his own benefit. This is the Lord’s response, “I regret that I have made Saul king, for he has turned back from following me and has not performed my commandments” (1Sam15:11). If we are not following all that God’s word teaches, then we are rebelling.
Jesus said, “I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father.” John 14:31
Jesus humbled himself completely to the will of the Father, no matter the cost. Sometimes we like to weigh up the pros and cons of a situation before committing to it. This is not what God desires. He wants our ears open to his voice and our hearts open to his leading, that we might find complete fulfilment in Him.
When we get to the end of our journey, may we be able to say with the psalmist, ‘our heart has not turned back, nor have our steps departed from your way’ (Psa44:18).