But I’ve heard a good number of Christians say it’s foolish to try to please God because He already loves us.
Our current Christian culture is so afraid of “works salvation” that we’ve thrown the good out with the bad.
The bad: thinking good works save us. They don't. We come to the Lord based solely on His mercy.
The good: we work out our salvation (our continuing walk with the Lord) with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12-13) and we “find out what pleases the Lord” (Ephesians 5:10).
If a man marries but continues to live like a single man, he’s a bad husband.
If we come to Christ but continue to live like unsaved people, we’re bad Christians.
Christ says those who love Him obey Him (John 14:23).
We cannot earn God's mercy and grace. But we can seek to live lives that are obedient and purposeful. That’s not “works” – it’s love.
1. How can we please the Lord according to these passages?
Colossians 1:9-14: For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Hebrews 13:16: Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
2. Notice that our sanctification is a process of renewal, transformation, and knowledge.
Romans 12:1-2: I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Colossians 1:9-10: And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.
copyright 2017, Gail Burton Purath, BiteSizeBibleStudy.com