At the beginning of the school year (which is coming up way too fast), the rules are laid down. If you’re the kind of person who usually follows the rules, well…that’s what you’re going to do, isn’t it? But what if you just listened to the rules but didn’t obey them? What good would that be? You’d be as good as the kid across from you that breaks rules left and right without a second thought. The more we think about it, it becomes clearer that there’s more to obeying rules than simply listening to them. We have to obey them.
The Bible says this clearly. James 1:22 (NIV):
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
Although this can apply to obeying the rules, that was really just an example. When it says “word”, it’s not talking about what people say. It’s talking about what God says, in the Bible. We can’t just read the Bible and then ignore what it says as we live our lives. We can’t just listen to our youth pastor or pastor and then forget whatever he said for the rest of the week. Although listening is a key part of it, it is not the only part. We have to obey.
We usually find that obeying the rules pays off. Not only do we not get in trouble, but (if they are good rules: see Obeying Authority) we become a better person. This works the same way when we follow what the Bible says. A good place to start is by reading the Gospels, where you can see Jesus in action and read His words.