Day 9 – Pray to Obey His Will
“your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” – Matthew 6:10b (ESV) (Part 2)
In one way, God’s will is always done here on earth. In Ephesians 1:11, Paul says that God “works all things according to the counsel of his will.” Psalm 115:3 adds that “our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.” In passages such as these, we see that God is sovereign and His will can never be frustrated. Nothing happens without God allowing it to happen. For example, God allowed Adam and Eve to have a choice to obey or disobey. As a result, God allowed or decreed that sin entered our world. We can be sure that this didn’t frustrate or take God by surprise. God, in His sovereignty, will work all things, even evil, together for His glory and for the ultimate good of those who love Him. God’s sovereign or decretive will is often hidden from us until after it comes to pass.
There are some things that God keeps from us but there are other things that He has revealed to us and wants us to know. This is what we refer to as God’s preceptive will. In other words, these are the precepts or teachings about behavior that we often see clearly spelled out in Scripture. Some examples include the Ten Commandments, being content, giving thanks, loving our enemies, staying pure sexually and so forth. God’s preceptive will is routinely broken. To pray for God’s will to be done on earth is to ask that His preceptive will be done. This highlights the importance of reading God’s Word in our private alone time with the Lord, which helps to ensure that we obey His precepts and not our own whims and intuitions alone.
As you pray today, ask God to help you obey His will as you read and understand His teachings in the Bible. Ask Him to help you see that His preceptive will is “good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).