It’s called a “Conditional Clause”, and we use it a lot in life.
Sometimes we don’t even think if it, but we live this way:
IF I do (this thing) THEN I will get (this result).
You see it in Major League Baseball all the time.
Batters have a specific routine they get into before entering the batters’ box. Pitchers have certain habits they will do to get themselves ready to make a pitch.
Where do these behaviors come from?
One day they probably made this gesture and got a Home Run, or a strikeout in a key situation, and now they think that ‘IF they keep doing (that behavior) THEN it will go well for them.’
Sometimes it’s just wacky.
Sometimes in life, however, it’s pretty accurate:
IF I eat right, get enough sleep, and exercise, THEN I will usually be healthy.
IF I live within my means and save money, THEN I will have enough when an emergency arises.
There’s also something a little bit deeper than this “conditional clause” I’d like to challenge you on.
Last week, I shared the question: “Does God Really Love Us?”, and challenged you to consider whether or not you really believe that. (Read it here: https://pastordajo.wordpress.com/2015/06/25/does-god-really-love-us/)
As you considered that, I hope that the answer was a resounding YES!
But I have a new question for you:
‘IF God really does love us, THEN what should be our response?’
I think the answer is Trust! Faith!
Think about it: IF a child believes that daddy will catch him, THEN he is more likely to jump off the side of the pool. IF a child thinks mommy will listen, THEN she will open up about her problems.
Similarly, IF we believe–really believe–that God loves us, THEN we will trust, follow, and submit ourselves to Him and His Word, in faith.
The Scriptures say “Without faith it is impossible to please God, for anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who diligently seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)
How do we SHOW our faith?
By obeying His Word: Jesus said, for example: “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.” (Matthew 7:25-28)
So, IF we believe in God and believe He loves us, THEN we will follow!
IF we believe in His Love for us, THEN we will trust Him enough to submit to His leading–as read in His Word!
Yet, many of us live as though we know better than He does.
We live as though ‘Our Word’ (opinion, feelings, etc.) are more important than His Word.
We see this a lot in our culture–especially with regard to sex, sexuality, relationships, values, etc.
Yet, we still have to ask: IF we believe in Him and IF we believe He loves us, THEN why aren’t we living that way?
“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
What does He–your loving heavenly Father–say in His Word about how you’re living?
IF we really believe in Him, THEN we probably need to repent of our stubbornness and disobedience and get in line with His Word again.
IF He is God, THEN we are not, and HE gets to set the standard for right and wrong.
IF we really believe, THEN we will follow.