How have you had such moments, where you actually contemplated on this statement?
The first time this question was asked brought dire consequences. This happened in the Garden of Eden where a conversation between the crafty snake and Eve ensued.
Genesis 3: 1-24. Just to highlight on the excerpts of the conversation.
Now the serpent was craftier than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made.
He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?”
And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’
I bet the snake rolled up its eyes and gave a know it all sign and muttered something like Huh…do you say? And went ahead said. ‘Let me school you a little bit and it said to the woman. “You will not surely die, for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.
And voila, Eve fell in the devious plan of the serpent, desired the fruit, ate and did not end there she had her husband Adam take a bite. I could picture the snake shouting, bingo or jackpot or something to celebrate that win…but the consequences thereafter were dire for we lost the connection with God because of the disobedience from the two who by the way the instruction was given to Adam, yet look who went round and rebelled, Eve and Adam whom had been given the instruction did not help much.
See how disobedience or rebellion happens. Out of a very seemingly simple question. Did God actually say? Eve disobeyed, she had all the information to an extent she added “not to touch” and because of that got deceived, she let the desire of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pleasures of life take heed.
This statement has two consequences, obedience if you actually know what God says or disobedience if you have half truths about who God is and if you lack that information totally about what God says.
Many are times we fall into the second and unfortunate consequence – Disobedience…
The Israelites left Egypt with pomp and funfair, came all the way to the Red Sea, then all of a sudden they cry out to Moses that he had brought them there to die because Pharaoh and his army were in hot pursuit, forgetting that this was not an ordinary journey but it is God who had ordained this journey and blame game began…
Again, disobedience is witnessed when Moses takes too long on the mountain where he had gone to have a chat with God. Eeh this guy though, he had such a privilege. So they decided with the assistance of Aaron to make an idol a golden calf to be exact so that they can worship yet they had been issued with the Ten Commandments and one of them was very clear. “You shall have no other gods before[a] me. “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands[b] of those who love me and keep my commandments’ very clear, but guess what…? they go ahead and the consequences were dire.
There are many examples of clear disobedience not because they did not have clear instructions. Same for you and I. What has God actually said about serving him?
Matthew 6:33 says But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well, but what do we do? vice versa. We seek, search for wealth, things of the world and when these things slip off our fingers or cause to engage in activities that lead us in disobedience to Who the owner of all things, we dive straight on to despair, depression, fear, doubts, and in extreme cases death.
We have let ourselves be led by the desires of the flesh, it is me, myself and mine. But God actually says in Mark 12: 30 – 31; Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” Who’s your first love? Is it God or is there something else or someone else?
Jesus Christ also had this similar conversation with Satan in the wilderness after his forty days and forty nights of fasting before beginning His ministry but this time round the devil lost because Jesus knew what God actually said. He knew His Father, He knew what his Father says in his word and he proclaimed it. He knew the purpose that His Father had sent Him to do. To do his Will.
Even for us not to fall in this trap that comes with this question Did God actually say, then we have to be intentional about desiring an intimate relationship with God. What is His Will for us? What plans does He have for us? What are His attributes? What does He say about our daily lives? What does he say about our jobs, our daily provision, our children, nation, family relationships and so many other issues of life and most of all to operate in His Will that which is pleasing, good and acceptable.
I love this verse from Psalm 27:4 one thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.”
Every day, we are faced with different life challenges, but in all God has actually said something about it and the best thing is he says: John 16: 33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Yes, His Word not mine, HE HAS OVERCOME! What you are going through is not new neither does it get to God by surprise but in all he will see you through it. Ain’t He an awesome God?
Four things to counter Did God actually say question?
- Read the word
- Meditate upon it day and night
- Be careful to do as it says
- Pray without ceasing
- Have a heart full of gratitude
May the Holy Spirit continue to impress on us on what God has actually said in our everyday life so that we may live in obedience to the Will of God and fulfill the purposes that He has set us for. For the Glory and honor of His Name. Amen.
The Greatest is #LOVE