The Will of God – I Thessalonians 5:18

by Pastor John Fredericksen

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A Christian man lamented to me how his life had turned out. Through alcohol and poor decisions, he had lost his job, his family, and many of his friends. He blamed his father for inattentiveness, he blamed other Christians for offenses, and then he blamed God. Among other things, he said: “I just wish I knew what God’s will was for my life. All of my friends knew exactly what God wanted them to do with their lives, but God never showed me.” He was failing to take personal responsibility for his decisions and failing to understand God’s will.

Webster’s dictionary defines “mysticism” as “any doctrine that asserts the knowledge of spiritual truths through intuition or meditation, vague thinking or belief, of occult character or meaning.” Without realizing it, many believers embrace the concept of mysticism as they seek God’s will in their lives. God has a better idea. Galatians 4:1-7 explains that God deals with us, not as children, but as adult sons. Galatians 5:1 tells us we have great liberty to make decisions in life without God micromanaging every detail. That means He gives us the freedom to choose who we will marry (I Corinthians 7:39), what work we pursue (I Timothy 3:1), even where we go (I Corinthians 16:12). This means God gives us wide latitude to decide our direction in life, yet He will work within us every day regardless of which path we choose. But God has also plainly told us we can understand His will today (Colossians 1:9; Ephesians 5:17). It is God’s “…will [to] have all men to be saved and to come unto the knowledge of the truth” (I Timothy 2:4), and to “…deliver us from this present evil world…” (Galatians 1:4). “This is the will of God…that ye should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor…” (I Thessalonians 4:3-4). Then, “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (I Thessalonians 5:18). Beyond this, all the obvious instructions in Paul’s letters are God’s will: being transformed (Romans 12:2), walking in newness of life (Romans 6:4), renewing our minds through Scripture (Ephesians 4:23; 3:16), and much more relating to growth in godliness.

Have you been searching to understand God’s will for your life? You don’t need a mystic experience, or a seminar. Understand your liberty in Christ and the principles in Paul’s epistles that clearly define God’s will.

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Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."