The hard way – that leads to life

Psalm 119:176 “I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek your servant, for I do not forget your commandments.”

The 119th Psalm was penned by someone who had a deep reverence and love for God and his Word.  He speaks of God’s Word in one way or another 176 times in this psalm.  Yet, at the end of it all, he confesses that he is prone to wander from God and his Word like a lost sheep.  If someone with such a heart confesses this reality, what about you and me?  

Walking with God in obedience to his Word is a great challenge.  It is a life that runs against the grain of the way of the world, and it is a way with much opposition (as the Word says, from the world; the flesh, i.e., one’s natural tendency to follow various ungodly lusts; and the devil).   Jesus calls it a hard way and a narrow way in Matthew 7:14, but it is the way that leads to eternal life.  The natural way to live, i.e., the way most people live, Jesus calls a broad way, and an easy way (meaning not necessarily an easy life, but one that “goes with the flow” of the world around us), but one that leads to destruction.  

Only those who spend much time in God’s Word are even aware that there are two ways, and though they may desire to obey God with all their heart, they are keenly aware that following Jesus is difficult.  And they are aware that they have no hope of walking in the way of the Lord without constant dependence on Him both for an understanding of his Word and for the power to walk in obedience to it.  If one is not in the Word, they are definitely on the broad and easy road but completely unaware that their choices are leading them to destruction.  

The importance of the Word of God to a life that glorifies God cannot be overstated.  Jesus proclaimed, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4).”  Is that your view as well?

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