The Will Of God Versus The Will Of Man

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There is a very fine line between realizing the need to ‘die daily’ as we grow from ‘babes’ (nepios) to adults (huios), as we graduate from ‘milk’ to ‘strong meat,’ and at the same time always be aware that it is ALL the Lord’s doing and nothing of ourselves.

It seems contradictory for Paul to say on the one hand by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God and then tell us to be CAREFUL to maintain good works that they be not unfruitful. We know that Christ warned us that every tree that brings not forth good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire. Why are we told on the one hand that God works ALL things after the counsel of His own will, and then warned that He will render to every man according to his deeds? Why are we told I am crucified with Christ…Christ liveth in me and in the next breath told I keep my body under subjection, lest after preaching to others I myself should become a castaway? And still Paul is able to say I am CONFIDENT of this very thing, that He which has begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. How can Paul be so confident and yet always be encouraging others and himself to “be careful” and “keep my body under subjection?”

The obvious answer is that God Himself has decreed that we be both “confident” (Php 1:6) and “vigilant” (1Ti 3:2 and 1Pe 5:8). God is completely capable of evaluating whether we have ‘buried our talent,’ or ‘increased our five talents.’ I firmly believe that He knows in advance exactly what we will do with the ‘talents’ that we are given ‘according to our several abilities;’ but we don’t. So we live ‘confidently’ yet ‘vigilantly.’


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