MY AMBITION IS TO PLEASE GOD WELL 2
We are back, friends, to continue from where we stopped last time, discussing: My ambition is to Please God Well.
Let us Pray.
Father, as we get into Your Word now, may Your Words come alive now, we pray. Teach us that we may please You in the footsteps of Christ…in His Name I pray. Amen!
Ambition is a strong desire to achieve or accomplish something in the area of learning, wealth or power. And our text was taken from Saint Luke’s Gospel 3:21-22
21 When all the people were baptized, it came to pass that Jesus also was baptized; and while He prayed He prayed, the heaven was opened.
22 And the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from heaven which said, “You are My beloveth Son; in You I am well pleased.”
2 Corinthians 5:7, it’s from Weymouth New Testament.
2 Cor 5:7-10
7 for we are living a life of faith, not of sight.
8 So we have a cheerful confidence, and we anticipate with greater delight being banished from the body and going home to the Lord.
9 And for this reason also we make it our ambition, whether at home or in exile, to please Him perfectly.
5 By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. 6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He exists, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
We saw last time, Pleasing God well Positionally. What do I mean by pleasing God well positionally? And the point I made last time was that no body can think of pleasing God who is not positioned in Christ. And we said that, pleasing God well starts with being rightly related to God through Jesus Christ. And that relationship is through Christ. Psalms 7:11 says that God is not pleased with anyone who is not in Christ.
Pleasing God practically
Does your private life please God?
The privacy of your life – that part of your life that only God and very few people know about.
God said, concerning Jesus and His private life, I am well pleased with my Son.
The Key to the Private Life of Jesus.
There are two scriptures in my judgement I consider the key to this private life of Jesus for which the Father said He was well pleased.
In Luke 2, something was said about Jesus. This is His private life. Before He started His public ministry: Luke 2, if we read from verse 48,
48 So when they saw Him [Jesus, seated with the Jewish scholars in the temple, after they had sought for Him for some days], they were amazed; and His mother said to Him, “Son, why have You done this to us? Look, Your father and I have sought You anxiously.”
49 And He said to them, “Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?”
The mother said your father and I, and He said, no – not my father. Jesus did not agree that Joseph was His father. Didn’t you know I would be about My Father’s business?
His Private Life.
50 But they did not understand the statement which He spoke to them.
But they understood later.
51 Then He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them [and was obedient to them], but His mother kept all these things in her heart. 52 And Jesus increased in wisdom, stature, and in favor with God and in favor with man.
The second scripture is from Hebrews 10. We are talking about the private life of Jesus that the Father said He was well pleased with. In Hebrews 10 from verse 5,
5 Therefore, when He [that’s, Jesus] came into the world, He said:
“Sacrifice and offering You did not desire,
But a body You have prepared for Me.
6 In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin
You had no pleasure.
7 Then I [Jesus speaking] I said, ‘Behold, I have come —
In the volume of the book it is written of Me —
To do Your will, O God.'”
You noticed I skipped something. That’s in parenthesis. In verse 7 says,
7 Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come —
In the volume of the book it is written of Me —
To do Your will, O God.'”
That is the secret of pleasing God, when Jesus came to the world. You cannot find this statement in the Gospels. But that was what happened before ever He started His public ministry. In the privacy of His life these two scriptures tell me something about Him. And I have drawn four observations from these two scriptures concerning Jesus’ private life that the Father said He was pleased with.
The first one is that Jesus saw the body that God prepared for Him in the womb of Mary to be an instrument of pleasing God. He saw the body that God the Father prepared for Him in the womb of Mary as an instrument for pleasing God. Do you see your body as an instrument for pleasing God? Every part of your body: your eyes, your mouth, your heart, your hands, your feet, as instrument pleasing God. That’s Hebrews 10:5. A body you have prepared for me and God has prepared a body for you and He wants you to use your body as an instrument to please Him.
Secondly, Jesus in His humanity, was irrevocably and uncompromisingly committed to His Father and to His will. In the volume of books it is written of me, I have come to do Your will O God. He was committed to doing the will of the Father. All the time that He lived as man on earth there was nothing else that Jesus desired and did except the will of the Father. And that is the secret of pleasing God. If you are not prepared or ready to do the will of God you can never please God. That’s the secret of pleasing Him.
Thirdly, from those two scriptures, Jesus pleased God the Father well by being subject or obedient to what I call his surrogate parents – Joseph and Mary. Jesus pleased the Father by being obedient to Joseph and Mary.
Young people, you cannot please God well if you are not obedient to your parents. And adults, you cannot please God well if you are not obedient to authorities. You can’t. obedience to those who are in authority over you either politically, ecclesiastically, or domestically – if you are not obedient you cannot please God.
And fourthly, Jesus Christ, in His humanity, was a well-balanced man. The bible said that He grew in four dimensions: in stature – physically; it’s not only in stature that He grew, He also grew intellectually; He also grew socially – He was right with men; and He also grew spiritually – He was right with God.
We cannot please God well if we are not these balanced. By the way, parents you are doing a good job in raising our children to grow physically. You give them food: garri, rice and beans. But some of us are not doing very good job in raising them spiritually or even socially. Some children do not know how to relate to other human beings.
I was at the airport. The person who booked my flight on Lagos to Owerri made a mistake. My flight was supposed to be 7:30 – and she told me it was 10. So I was there after 9, and they told me that I had missed the flight. Then I had to pay a penalty to be booked for 2:30 flight. And I was telling the girl who perhaps is the age of one of my children that I had an experience like that before: two times before with Aero. They didn’t charge me any extra. She says, it a lie. Then there was a man standing besides me, and he said to her, young lady, you don’t say that to somebody who is an adult, who is old enough perhaps to be your Father.
Children who do not know how to behave socially – rude! Very rude. We cannot please God if we are rude.
How is your private life, if I will ask again: that part that only the eyes of God see. What does He see; what does He hear? Are you sure that what He sees and hears about your private life He is pleased? God was well pleased with Jesus in His private life.
Pleasing God well practically
Let’s start with the Public Life
The public life of Jesus was indeed public. And that’s why you read about it in four books: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. That’s public. You can read about the public life of Jesus Christ in three different books. And when you read about His public life there God was well pleased. Was it in His speech, was it in His preaching, was it in His teaching, was it in His miracles – the Father was well pleased. And no wonder towards the end of His life the Father testified just as He testified concerning His private life. The Father testified this time concerning His public life. In Matthew 17:5, God the Father said again, towards the end of the life of Jesus, this is my beloveth Son, in whom I Am well pleased. But this time He added, hear Him – listen to Him. When God is pleased with any man, any woman, any boy, any girl, He will cause people to listen to you.
Does your public life please God well? Somebody may say, but I am not Jesus Christ. Really? But are you a Christian? This argument, after all I am not Jesus Christ that some Christians have is only a lame excuse. Why then do you still say you are a Christian? Why don’t you drop that title – because you don’t know what the word Christian means: “Christ” “tian” – little Christ. That’s what it means – little Christ.
Our public life.
When people watch our lives, watch our language, watch our attitude, our behavior, how we relate to others outside of the church, do they see things that will cause them to long to go to that place you go on Sundays; or do they say, if that is what they go there to do count me out – then you are not pleasing God well. Some of us will sit down and use the technology God has made available to us that He wants us to use to evangelize: we use it to gossip. You tear people down. And after you have said all kinds of ugly things about that person, when you see him or her in public you smile as if you did not say anything. You are not pleasing God well.
We must please God well positionally. We must be in Christ to please Him. We must please God well practically; and we must please God perfectly.
We will conclude this message next time.
Thank You, Father, for this time we have spent together in our Word. I’m praying, O God, that as many as have heard me today will give their lives to Christ. And if they have already done so that you will impress upon them the desire to shine wherever they are, that you may be glorified today and the world around them blessed…in Jesus Name. Amen!