Torchbearers for Christ
Sunday, July 31, 2016
Them that honor Me, I will honor
These are golden words and they apply to all of us without exception. God is saying to us that if any person, anywhere, will honor Him he or she will, in turn, be honored by Him. To make it personal God says to each one of us, "If you will honor Me, I will honor you. We often hear about the honor of representing one's country in sport, or the honor bestowed by a country on some person in recognition of a worthy act. But very few of us will ever qualify for that sort of honor. But it is within our power to honor God and to have Him honor us in return.
What does it mean to honor God? How does He honor us in return? We honor God when we make it our chief ambition in life to please Him, to love Him and to serve Him at all times. This is the way that Jesus lived. He said "I honor My Father" (John 8:49) and in John John 8:29, "I do always those things that please Him". A man without God, on the other hand, may seek the honor of his fellow man rather than the honor that comes from God (John 5:44). A number of Bible passages tell us how we can honor God and how He honors us in return.
1. We honor the Lord by trusting Him with our whole heart. Jesus told us that it is God's will that "all men should honor the Son even as they honor the Father" (John 5:23,24). He then added, "He that hears my word and believes on Him that sent Me has everlasting life". We honor the Lord Jesus by believing His Word and trusting in Him. God honors us in return by giving us eternal life.
2. We honor the Lord by serving Him. Jesus said, "If any man serve Me, him will My Father honor" (John 12:20-26). In speaking of the corn of wheat falling into the ground and dying, our Lord was referring to Himself and His death and the fruits of His sacrifice. But He was also giving us a principle that if we too die to self we will bring forth fruit to His glory (John 12:24). As we honor the Lord by surrendering to Him and serving Him, He will honor us by making our lives spiritually fruitful.
3. We honor God by setting our love upon Him. Psalm 91:14,15 reads, "Because he has set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him; I will set him on high because he has known my name. He shall call upon me and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him". In return for our love, He promises to honor us by delivering us, by lifting us up, answering our prayers and being with us in trouble.
4. We honor God with our substance. Proverbs 3:9,10 reads, "Honor the Lord with your substance and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so shall your barns be filled with plenty....." Jesus has told us "Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you" (Luke 6:38 NKJ) by giving God His rightful place in regard to our substance, we will be richly rewarded.
Is it all too difficult? Some may feel that to honor God seems to be too demanding, but we may be sure that God will give the grace to obey Him whatever it might involved.
This article was written by Pastor Geoffrey Davies. He is a frequent contributor to this column. He lives in Melbourne, Australia, where he pastored a church for over twenty-five years. Since 1983 he has traveled widely, continuing his ministry of encouragement and Bible teaching.
Last month's Word. The Servant & the Seeker