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Are We Pleasing To God?

Are We Pleasing To God?

     As we walk this path of life, all seek to please, or be pleased.   The problems that arise in this result from “how we seek to please” and “whom we seek to please”.   We all have our “place in the crowd” called humanity. Do we seek to be pleasing to humanity?   Many that are married seek to please their spouse.   The Spirit had Paul allude to this in 1Corinthians 7:32-35, noting that “pleasing God” is to be of most importance.   But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: 33 But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife34 There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband. 35 And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.  This is not to say that one should not be married, but that pleasing God MUST come first in the lives of all His people.

     This is in complete agreement with what Jesus taught in Mark 4:19 as He explained to His apostles, what He taught by the seaside in the parable of the sower. And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.While family, career, education and such are a large part of our lives, we cannot afford to allow these things to cause us not to be pleasing to God. Our focus is to be doing those things which are pleasing to Him. In Colossians 1:10 the Spirit had Paul write: That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;  The key here is that if we want to be pleasing to God, we must increase in knowledge and also do what we learn so that we walk worthy of the Lord and please Him.

     In Galatians 1:10 we read: For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ

We can also determine that which was to be proclaimed to be pleasing to God in vss 11-12. But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. 12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.  The revelation of Jesus Christ (the gospel), our knowledge of the gospel, and our continued obedience to it is what is pleasing to God.   1Thessalonians 2:4 clearly states that the faithful preaching of the Word of God is pleasing to God.   But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts. 

     But how does this affect “happiness”? That is truly dependent upon what it is that makes one happy.   Does being pleasing to God make us happy? Should we ever be happy if we are NOT pleasing God?  Happy defined is: Feeling or showing pleasure or contentment.  Should we not be content or feel pleasure in being pleasing to God?   Then, why are so many worried about pleasing man?

Are they afraid of man?   Should we not remember the Words of our Lord found in Matthew 10:28 regarding “fear” of man?   And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.  How many on the wrong side of this will be happy for eternity?   We all know that answer.  

       God’s Word was given to man to bring about man’s happiness.  We are also aware that God’s Word is given for our correction.   This too is for our happiness in this life and in the “world to come”. Job 5:17 is the first place in which God’s Word tells us we are to be happy when corrected by God’s Word. Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty Anyone who has received “chastisement” does not realize “happiness” at the moment the correction is being exercised.   But all who are honest, will realize the benefit afterward, as well as the happiness that results as Hebrews 12:9-11 tells us. Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. 11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby

     What are other benefits of pleasing God?   The Spirit had the wise man, Solomon, write in Proverbs 16:6-7, Words for our learning. This is much needed even in our present society amid the turmoil that is certainly unpleasing to God. By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil. 7 When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.  The Spirit had the apostle Paul, in 1Thesalonians 4:1 write it this way: Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.

     Isn’t it about time to consider “pleasing God”?   He has provided for this His Word in which we can please Him and also be happy in this life and in the hereafter.                  

                                           Dennis Strickland – Mooresville church of Christ

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