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Acts 9:1-6 HOW TO KNOW THE WILL OF GOD
Intro: If you were to have a face to face encounter with the Lord Jesus, and could ask Him any question you wanted, what would that question be? I suppose you would have to think long and hard about what you would ask Him, but I am guessing that many would be asking, Lord, what would you have me to do? That experience did happen to the man in our text, and he asked that very question. He also received a response from the Lord.
In this passage, Paul asked 2 very important questions. Questions to which we need sure answers. Those questions are: 1.) Who art thou Lord? (v.7) This is the single most important question in all of life. Who is Jesus Christ to you? Your answer determines where you will spend your eternity! 2.) Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? This is the second most important question in life. Gods will and His will alone should be the hearts desire for every child of God. Ill. The context. Paul was told to go into the city and there, he would be told what to do. God did not hide His will from Paul, and He will not hide it from you!
This morning, I am going to preach to you about How To Know The Will of God. Now, before you can know Gods will for your life, you must have an understanding of how His will operates. There are three ways in which we may understand the will of God.
1. Gods Sovereign Will - This is a decision of God that is always carried
out, nothing in the universe is ever able to stop it. God is God and He
accomplished what He wishes. Gods Sovereign will is mysterious and is
known only to God.
2. Gods Moral Will - This, too, is forever settled and is unchanging.
Some things are right and some things are wrong, (It matters not what
society says!) This Moral will is revealed in the Word of God and the
conscience of man.
3. Gods Particular Will - He has a will that is particular and peculiar to
your life. (Ill. Saul - Acts 9:15) This particular will will vary from saint
I can see all 3 aspects of the will of God at work in my life. It was His Sovereign will that set His love upon me and saved me. It was His moral will that I stop cursing, drinking, etc. It was and is His particular will for my life that I become a preacher of the Gospel.
Even though you and I are such a small part of Gods vast creation, and our lives seem very insignificant, God knows you! He loves you! Even the very hairs of your head are numbered and known by Him. As a result, He has designed a particular plan for your life, and, He has promised to reveal it to you and to guide you into it.
Before we get into how to know His will, I am first going to address some myths concerning the will of God.
1.) God Will Give You A Road Map - God does not give roadmaps, He gives
relationships. As you follow Him, He will reveal His will unto you. (Ill. Israel
- Ex. 13:21 - The Pillar of Cloud and Fire!)
2.) God Doesnt Want You To Have Any Fun - Some see God as a Cosmic
killjoy. That is, if you surrender to do His will, you will have a hard and an
unhappy life. Many are afraid to find His will because they are afraid of what
they might be asked to do. (Ill. Put yourself in the place of God. How do you
treat your children? Isnt He better than us? Luke 11:11-13
3.) God Only Speaks To A Certain, Few Holy People - Gods will is not limited
to those with position. He just doesnt speak to the Pauls, the Spurgeons and
the Grahams. He has a will for every saint at every conceivable level of
commitment. If you choose to follow in His will, you will be lead to a holier
life. But, He calls us where we are!
4.) You Have To Wait On A Damascus Road Experience - Sauls experience
certainly was dramatic, but it wasnt normal. God spoke to Saul in the
earthquake, but more often, He speaks in the still, small voice - 1 Kings 19:11-
5.) God Only Reveals His Will To The Young - God calls people of all ages, He
never stops using His saints. If He were finished with you, He would have
called you home. If you are sitting on the sidelines, I can guarantee you that
you need to seek His will! It is never too late to do the will of God.
6.) Gods Will Is Hidden From Us And We Have To Find It Ourselves - (Ill.
The absurdity of a Father hiding His will from His son!) God never hides His
will He reveals it! He wants you to know His will so you can get about doing
it. (Ill. This is not a cosmic Easter egg hunt!)
Now that we have discussed several myths concerning the will of God, allow me to share with you a couple of easy steps that will lead us into knowing the will of God.
I. GODS GUIDANCE IS PROVISIONAL
(That is to say, God expects certain things from us. Unless we are able to
deliver these characteristics, we will probably remain in the dark concerning
A. Be Willing To Obey Him - Ill. Saul wanted Gods will. Too often, we
make our plans, set them in motion and then call God in to bless them. To genuinely do His will, we must put our will aside and be will to do all that He asks us to do. (Ill. Can you honestly say, Wherever He Leads Ill GO?) Ill. Why should God reveal His will to us when He knows we arent going to do it anyway?
B. Display A Spirit Of Meekness - That is, be teachable - Psa. 25:9. Ill. Saul -
He displayed a teachable spirit. If you arent teachable, and think you know it all already, then you will probably never know His will.
C. Be Open To God - Earnestly, sincerely pray for Gods guidance. Report for
duty. Dont wait to be drafted, just show up and ask Him if He has an assignment for you. If God isnt showing you anything, perhaps you should examine your life to see just how much time you really spend with Him in private. Too often he is speaking, but no one is listening!
D. Be Yielded To God - Ill. Saul - Acts 9:8-9, As soon as he had a word from
God, he got busy doing it. Again, God probably not reveal His will to someone who isnt going to do it anyway. If all areas of your life are yielded and open to His will, then you can expect that He will reveal Himself to you. Are you willing to do His will regardless of the cost? Luke 14:26-33.
II. GODS GUIDANCE IS PRACTICAL
(Ill. God will reveal His will in ways that will be plain to see and understand.
He used several in the Bible. These are still His ways.)
A. Through Miracles - Ill. Saul - Normally, God wont speak to a man like He
did to Saul. This was a miracle! Occasionally, He will speak in the fashion, but dont wait on it before you start to serve Him!
B. Through His Word - Ill. Saul - v.5. Gods Word holds the answers to all of
lifes questions - Psa. 119:89. (Ill. Matt. 5:18) When you are in doubt concerning His will, go back to the Bible and read. (Ill. This is Gods primary mode of address!)
C. Through His People - Ill. Saul - Acts 9:8-20. God used Ananias to speak
His will to Saul. Never discount the counsel of the godly people all around you - Pro. 24:6. (Ill. The danger of pride - It will cause you not to listen - 1 Cor. 10:12.
D. Through His Spirit - Ill. Saul - Acts 9:17. The Holy Spirit is in us, John
14:16, and he will guide us unto all truth, John 16:13. One of the distinguishing marks of Gods sheep is their earmark - John 10:1-14. God speaks to people through the Holy Ghost. (Ill. Beware of listening to voices!)
Conc: God has a big plan for your life! Do you know what it is? If not, be meek, teachable, open and yielded to God. Listen for His leading voice in His Word, His people and His Spirit and He will reveal His will unto you - John 14:21. He wants you to be in His will, and therefore, He will never leave you in the dark!
If you know His will, are you doing it? If not, there is no time like the present to surrender and yield to do the will of God.