January 2: “God Gives Commands; But What’s His Motive?”

Today’s Bible Reading:

If you click on the following references to read the Bible, it will open up the New Living Translation version of the Bible. This is the translation that I am going to use this year for my daily Bible reading and reflections.

Genesis 3:1-4:26
Matthew 2:13-3:6
Psalm 2:1-12
Proverbs 1:7-9

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

Genesis 3:1, 4-5 (NLT): “The serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild animals the LORD God had made. One day he asked the woman, ‘Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?’ … ‘You won’t die!’ the serpent replied to the woman. ‘God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.’”

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

God had placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. He had given them simple instructions. They were told to enjoy everything in the garden except one tree. They were not to eat of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. They were explicitly warned by the Lord that they would die if they ever ate of that forbidden fruit.

Enter Satan.

In the verses that I’ve chosen for today, we hear Satan tempting Adam and Eve to eat of that forbidden fruit. His line of attack is not to question God’s command. Instead, he questions God’s motive. He questions God’s heart.

He led Adam and Eve to believe that God was holding out on them. He led Adam and Eve to believe that God was keeping them from experiencing what was good for them. He made God seem self-centered. He made it appear that God did not really care about Adam and Eve and their wellbeing.

If we are not careful, we’ll buy into that logic as well. We will read the Scriptures, see the commands that God is given to us, and suspect that they’re not really for our good. What other reason would there be that we daily disobey God’s commands?

So, what is God’s motive? Why has God given us so many commands?

God is ultimately motivated by His glory and our good. He wants us to see how good He is and to enjoy Him. To achieve that end, He desires for us to live in such a way that He can bless us and work powerfully through us to draw a lost world to Himself.

So how should we live? What kind of life does God bless? How can we think and behave in such a way that God is free to live His life out through us?

Simply put, we trust in Jesus to save us and bring us into the divine relationship. Then, we obey His commands. We believe what He has said and act accordingly. His commands really are for our good!

As you read through the Scripture today and the rest of this year, carefully observe what God is saying to you. What is He saying that requires an adjustment in your thinking or behavior? Resolve with all your heart to obey instantly and completely when He speaks. Realize that doing so will be a major source of blessing as God reveals His glory to you.

Photo by Gabriele Lässer on Unsplash

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I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

2 thoughts on “January 2: “God Gives Commands; But What’s His Motive?”

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