The Power In Obedience
"Now as Jesus passed by, he saw a man who was blind from birth... He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And he said to him, 'Go, wash in the pool of Siloam' which is translated, "Sent." So he went and washed, and came back seeing.'" John 9:1, 6, 7 Sometimes the Lord just sovereignly heals a person or sets him free. But perhaps more often, he first requires an act of obedience. In this case, Jesus told the blind man to go to a specific place and wash. When the man did so, he who had been born blind could now see. As you seek God for solutions to the problems you face, be very attentive to whatever he tells you to do. Many times he requires obedience first, and only on your completion of the directive he gives - will the solution come. Be especially aware that oftentimes what he tells you to do will be something out of the ordinary. He told the blind man to go wash in the pool of Siloam. Had the man gone instead to wash in the Jordan river, his sight would not have been restored. This shows us clearly that we must do exactly as the Lord directs. God raised up a man named Saul to be king in Israel. The Lord told Saul to go and destroy a very wicked tribe of giants called the Amalekites, who were haters of Israel. Well ...Saul did go and he destroyed most of this wicked tribe, but he spared Agag the king and furthermore, he took plunder from them. When the prophet Samuel confronted Saul for this act of disobedience, Saul first declared that he had completed what the Lord told him to do. But Samuel said, "No you haven't. You left Agag the king alive." And for that act of disobedience, Saul lost his position as king over Israel. He entirely forfeited his position because although he did "MOST" of what God told him to do, nevertheless he disobeyed by taking Agag alive. In the story of Jericho, the Lord told the Jews to march around the city and repeat this once for six days, and then seven times on the seventh day with the priests blowing trumpets. Can you imagine Joshua the military leader telling his soldiers something like this? March around the city? Blow trumpets? Imagine them scratching their heads wondering if this man was crazy or what. You wouldn't think this is the military way to take a city, would you! But God oftentimes directs something totally unusual, leaving us wondering if that was really God. One must ask God for confirmation, and when it IS God, he will confirm it to you, but then it is vitally important to do exactly as the Lord directs in faith that as we obey, God will act. Obedience releases the power of God. Another example of this is in the story of Naaman, in 2nd Kings chapter 5. Naaman was the military commander under the king of Syria. He was a mighty warrior, but he came down with leprosy. The king knew there was a prophet in Israel and he sent Naaman to the prophet Elisha, who told him to go wash in the River Jordan seven times. But Naaman was furious. He thought that was ridiculous. He refused to go because in his mind he could have gone to any other river, why this particular one? “'Are not the Abanah and the Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them and be clean?' So he turned and went away in a rage.” 2nd Kings 5:12 In his pride and unbelief he went off in a rage. But his servant reasoned with him saying that if the prophet had asked him to do some great thing, wouldn't he do it? So why not just do what he said? What have you got to lose? And so ...Naaman went, feeling foolish, and washed in the Jordan seven times ...and came up clean. The point is that only by obeying to the letter the direction of Elisha was he made clean. The result was that now all involved knew that the God of Israel is truly God. Seek the Lord in your need. If he leads you to do something unusual, just do it. The most important thing to the Lord is obedience. Anyone who thinks he won't lower himself to do something deemed ridiculous …will simply lose out. Follow the Lord with all of your heart and you will see miracles.
Listen to pastor Jimmy Evans as he addresses this very thing. This is one of my favorite messages of all time.