I have met Christians who always pray to know God’s will for their lives. God, however, revealed His will in the pages of the Holy Scriptures. I will stop at just a few places in the New Testament that refer to God’s will directly or indirectly. Therefore, God’s will is:
1. Our sanctification
For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God. (1 Thessalonians 4:3-5, NASB)
Pornography is one way to ignite your sexual appetite. Also going on dates. Sexual jokes, etc. A child of God will know how to control his mind and body and will not expose himself to the things that can provoke his sexual desires. God created human sexuality and arranged marriage as the exclusive setting for sexual intercourse. And married people must always be vigilant in their minds so that they do not sin against one another and before God.
2. To be thankful
In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:18, NASB)
We live in a world where people are dissatisfied with their condition, especially materially. The love of money has also encompassed many Christians who, instead of being content with their condition and following the things above, spiritual things, are dissatisfied and run after material things. We have something to learn from the apostle Paul who said of himself: …for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with little, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. (Philipians 4:11b-12, NASB) For the apostle Paul the priority was the gospel and he was satisfied with every state.
3. To be submissive to the authorities and to do good
For such is the will of God, that by doing right you silence the ignorance of foolish people. (1 Peter 2:15, NASB)
Here Peter speaks in the context of submission to public authorities. Above he says, “Be subject to any human rule, for the Lord: both to the king, as high ruler, and to the rulers, as some who are sent by him to punish the wicked and praise those who do good.” Beyond that we must do good to each other, to the people around us, we must be subject to the laws of the state (those which do not contradict the Word) and be socially active. In fact, our love for God will always be reflected in our relationships with our neighbor.
4. To be subject to ministers
…begging us with much urging for the favor of participation in the support of the saints, and this, not as we had expected, but they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God. (2 Corinthians 8:4-5, NASB)
The Apostle Paul boasts before the Corinthians of the Churches of Macedonia, which, in their great poverty, made a collection to help the saints in Jerusalem. This had left a deep mark on Paul. He had appealed to all the churches he had planted, but he did not expect to receive such an answer from the Christians in Macedonia. They showed a beautiful loyalty to the apostle Paul, but this only happened after they gave themselves to God. A Christian who claims to be in a good relationship with God will always be obedient to his elders in the Gospel and will be quick to respond to good initiatives from them.
5. Suffering according to God’s will
Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God are to entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right. (1 Peter 4:19, NASB)
Today it is not popular in churches to talk about suffering. The gospel of prosperity is fashionable, which says that God’s will for you is to be healthy and prosperous in all areas of life. However, Scripture makes it clear that those who choose to live godly will be persecuted. When you choose not to steal, not to take or give bribes, to be honest with your boss, you can often be met with criticism from colleagues. Or, as a young man, you chose not to have sex until marriage. You may be considered as unusual as a white crow in the classroom. Or, you could be sued, like me, for publicly declaring that homosexuality is a sin. You have become a Christian and you face opposition from your relatives, they call you a sectarian or they call you other ugly names. All of this is suffering according to God’s will, and we should not be surprised when people treat us that way, because our Savior was treated the same way.
6. To study God’s Word
If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know about the teaching, whether it is of God, or I am speaking from Myself. (John 7:17, NASB)
We cannot know God’s will without studying God’s Word. It is important to make Bible study a daily discipline. I usually devote 30 minutes daily to individual study of the Word. At the moment I am studying the book 2 Peter according to the inductive method and in the last 2 months I managed to study 5 other Bible courses: “Malachi,” “Esther,” “Judges,” “Jesus: Understanding His Death and Resurrection,” and “Being a Disciple. Counting the real cost.” We cannot understand the Word from a simple reading. It is very deep and requires thorough study. Here is what James says: But one who has looked intently at the perfect law, the law of freedom, and has continued in it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an active doer, this person will be blessed in what he does. (James 1:25, NASB)
7. The salvation of men
First of all, then, I urge that requests, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made in behalf of all people, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:1-4, NASB)
It is God’s will that all men should hear the Gospel and come to the knowledge of the truth, that they may be saved. That is why he urges us to pray for those exalted as rulers, so that we may have a favorable context for the proclamation of the Word. If we live in peaceful and quiet times, then know that these are a good time to work hard to expand the Kingdom of God. We were commissioned to go and make disciples of all nations. “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20, NASB) Let us take our calling seriously and faithfully do the high service we have received.
Translated by Ina Croitoru