We studied on the topic of obedience for bible study this evening. The passage given was John 17:6-7. Pastor Chris led the study.
John 17:6-7 (NASB)
6"I have manifested Your name to the men whom You gave Me out of the world; they were Yours and You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word. 7"Now they have come to know that everything You have given Me is from You;
The main lesson of the evening from the verses is this: we may have with us a group of people or the church to disciple and teach, but like Jesus, we must always remember first and foremost that they belong to the Father, not to us. They are not ours, it is not "our" church. They may very well be the helpless sheep that we need to care and guide, just that they are not ours, and it's not about us. All is of God.
Pastor Chris then said something I need to think about. He said that we are not responsible for someone's obedience, i.e. whether or not the person obeys is through the conviction of the Holy Spirit. So if you have done your best for the person, and yet he refuses to be obedient, don't take it on yourself. But my question is are we not responsible for the destiny of our brethren? I know what he is at - it is not about us but about God. But yet, I am not thoroughly convinced that we are not at all accountable for the lives of our fellow brethren. It is true that we cannot blame ourselves if one brother decided not to live a godly life however hard we encourage him, but we then just say it is not our fault? Is that all?
A brother then asked a very interesting question. He wanted to know our opinion what we think God will ask us when we see him in heaven. I have not thought of that before - and so I started asking myself: what do I think God will ask me when I finally, by God's grace, meet him. The thing is, I couldn't think of any! Whatever the question that came up, is dead-on relevant now. So my respond to him was this: I do not want God to ask me anything when I finally see him, I want him to ask me now! If I wait until I meet him, it might be too late. I want to be the one to ask the questions when I see him and the questions will be endless, but I will have the eternity to do it ;)