Obedience Like Fire

“Your words were found, and I ate them,
and your words became to me a joy
and the delight of my heart.”
Jeremiah 15:16
We obey God’s will, as the angels in heaven, when we do it willingly and without complaint. The angels love to be employed in God’s service. It is their heaven to serve God. Heaven is such a happy place that angels would not leave it for a minute even to bring messages from God, were it not that they take such infinite delight in doing God’s will. A hypocrite is able to do good, but he has no delight in the duty. He does God’s will against his own.
Cain brought his sacrifice, but grudgingly. His worship was a task more than an offering. We must be carried upon the wings of delight in every duty. The regenerate may not always have the same cheerful temper of obedience, but this weariness is his burden. He is weary of his weariness, and he prays, weeps, and uses all means to regain his cheerfulness and freedom in God’s service. Delight in duty is better than the duty itself.
We also obey God’s will like the angels when we do it fervently. Angels burn in love and zeal in obedience. They give him their best, and do it readily and swiftly. They do not dispute the case, but as soon as they have their charge, they immediately obey. We should also be ambitious to obey.
Alas! How long it is sometimes before we can get leave of our hearts to obey! Christ went more readily to the cross than do to the throne of grace. How many excuses we have! O let us shake off this backwardness to duty as Paul shook off the viper! The grace of the Holy Spirit knows nothing of sluggish efforts (Psa. 18:44). The angels also obey God constantly. Consistency crowns obedience. Our obedience must be like the fire of the altar which was continually kept burning. Hypocrites soon give over doing God’s will. Therefore, let us do God’s will continually.

Thomas Watson, The Lord’s Prayer, pp. 159- 163

Voices From The Past p: 345, [Puritan Devotional Readings]

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