Precision obedience requires following the Lord’s way —no more and no less. God
warned the Israelites, “So you shall observe to do just as the Lord your God has commanded
you; you shall not turn aside to the right or to the left” (Deuteronomy 5:32).
Because the Old Covenant required precision obedience, we who have received the
greater New Covenant should be even more conscientious (cf. Hebrews 2:3).
Apostasy was a sad reality in the days of the apostles, and it is a danger to the church in
every generation. Constant vigilance is required if we are going to stay faithful.
Central to our fidelity is remaining grounded in Scripture. “Everyone then who hears
these words of Mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock”
(Matthew 7:24). This allegiance to the words of our Savior provides security in an uncertain
world, for as the next verse continues, “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds
blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock” (v. 25).
Further, we must be willing to bring Scripture into the present reality of our lives through
penitent faith. The Bible is not merely an academic book to study intellectually. “For the word of
God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and
of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart”
(Hebrews 4:12).
The living word must permeate and change us if we are going to be the people God has
called us to be. Restoration and repentance are not simply events to be done and forgotten.
Repentance before God calls us continually to turn from our sins. Restoration in the church calls
us to continually look to the pattern given in Scripture and to change where we fall short.
~Gregory Alan Tidwell, Editor of the Gospel Advocate
Sept. 2015 Editorial, (edited for space)
Reprinted with permission, Gospel Advocate