Pray to Know God's Will

Colossians 1:9-11
For this reason, since the day we heard about you,
we have not stopped praying for you and
asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will
through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.
        And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord
        and may please him in every way:
                bearing fruit in every good work,
                growing in the knowledge of God,
                being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might
                        so that you may have great endurance and patience,
                        and joyfully giving thanks to the Father

Many people often ask what the will of God is for their life. It's a very important question. For afterall it says, "The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever." 1John 2:17  But much of God's will for us is revealed explicitly in the Bible. For example it says, "this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality" 1Thess 4:3 And so also whenever we find a command of God given to his people we can derive application.

Now if we are not willing to do what He explicitly commanded, then why should He reveal any more of His will for us. Indeed, revelation is a function of obedience, and a willing heart is prerequisite to obtaining God's guidance. Those who seek knowledge just to puff up their minds without a view towards application will never really find it. For the objective of knowing God's will is in order to live a life worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him.

Notice the conditions under which Paul prayed that these Colossians would be filled with the knowledge of God's will. For what reason is he referring to when he starts off "For this reason"? It is because "we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints" Those who have demonstrated genuine faith and are practicing Christian love, these especially are the ones for whom it is appropriate to pray urgently and persistently that they be filled with the knowlege of God's will. For the commands to Christians in the Bible are not all that specific. Christians are commanded to love one another. But how do you carry that out in a practical daily sense? What exactly are we called to do for each specific situation we find ourselves in? And how do we discern between what is good and what is best? Even if we discern a need, there's alot of questions, like "how" and "how much" questions. How do I help? How much time, energy, resources and so forth do I contribute to the effort? Or what exactly should I say and when should I say it? While the Bible gives us general principles, it often doesn't give us specific answers to these. For these are revealed as we go. As we pray and are interceded for, God reveals ideas concerning specific applications through meditation (just by thinking about it) correlating the principles of God's Word with our circumstances, or through the experience and knowledge of others, or simply by God opening and closing doors.
 

Why Know God's Will?
1 God wants us to be filled with the knowledge of His will so that we can take specific action, inferring applications from Him Word appropriate for our particular circumstances.
2 God wants us to be filled with the knowledge of His will so that we may act with conviction. If we are confident we understand the circumstance and what God wants us to do, then we can act confidently and speak boldly, just as the apostles. And we can do so in faith. "Walking by faith" is not meant to give the impression that we are walking in uncertainty. Indeed faith is the opposite of uncertainty. "Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." Heb 11:1
3 God wants us to be filled with the knowledge of His will because acting on it will result in fruitfulness
4 Perhaps the most obvious is that by being filled with the knowledge of God's will we get to know God better. And afterall isn't that what eternal life is all about. For "this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent." John 17:3

And now I pray for you, the reader, asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding, in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father.
If you notice significant effects to this end in the future, feel free to glorify God and let me
know that I and others may be encouraged to pray further along these lines.

Steve Amato


The Berean Christian Bible Study Resources Jul 29,2015