Yesterday we spoke if how good it is to stand clean and uncondemned before God. A clear conscience brings peace to the heart and confidence to the soul: “Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God.” (1 John 3:21).
But the passage goes on, “…we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him.” (v.22)
When we have a right heart we begin to make right petitions. As our requests become more in line with God’s Will we find more prayers are answered. This is what Jesus was referring to when He said, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” (John 15:7).
And this is just the start of living clean before our Lord. As we grow in our openness with the Lord we receive more of His Love and Forgiveness. We seek to keep His commands and please Him more. We realize that without Christ we are more lost than we could ever imagine – like a ship adrift at sea.
You cannot anchor a ship to itself; it must be anchored to something outside itself, something immoveable, something strong. Self cannot sustain you in the storms. You must anchor your life to Christ.
In fact, that’s the very next part of our passage, “ … and do what pleases him. And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us” (v.23).
These are commands, much like a parent might command a child hesitating at jumping from a fiery second floor window into the waiting parent’s arms, “Jump!” Jesus shouts, “Believe!” “Love!”
When we do this… when we trust and obey Him, He lives in us. “The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.” (v.24).
We have confidence and boldness in Christ.
To hear all of Pastor Andrew’s message go to the Lincoln Baptist Church website and look under ‘Media’ for the March 10th Sunday message.