God comes to our aid no matter the variableness of the situation. He is known for it. The only reason He does it is He unfathomably loves us. We ourselves cannot measure His lovingkindness toward us, except to be in awe and praise of it. We do face various circumstances that put varying pressures on us. They weigh us down with pain, sadness or shame. At these times the Lord earnestly desires to help us. We too earnestly ask Him that He take note of us. And there is a standard that our asking Him necessitates. Many either forget or neglect it; some do not even consider it. Those who are aware of it no doubt enjoy His mighty helping hand. That standard is seen in the following Word. “When they came to Jesus, they earnestly implored Him, saying, ‘He is worthy for You to grant this to him’” (Luke 7:4).
To be worthy before the Lord God is a unique standard to which we should all strive to attain. There are times when God simply sends help in our direction without even asking Him, i.e. from compassion. It is His way of letting us know He is there for us and with us. He does it when men must come to know Him and does it when they are earnestly walking with Him. But, if one takes His compassion lightly, he or she is bound to lose it. On the contrary, if he or she seizes it and acts on it, they are striving to become worthy to all that He is able to do. Worthiness is trait God looks for in believers. It is a sign He desires we have so that He can freely come to our aid. It echoes His holiness in us. It is not about doing any or numerous works in His name, but doing things that please Him and are according to His will. The things we do must align with His thoughts; they reflect true faith and righteousness. Then, our mind together with our body tunes to become worthy or sustain worthiness before Him.
The trait worthiness is acquired from a desire for God. Men desire various things in life, but believers are to yearn for God. Therefore, they can receive from God and that too everything good. However, they can drop from continuing in that desire. It is by the impediments of the flesh. They are many, and with the power of Satan have the power to steer them away from God. Hence, to be worthy before God is an acquired trait. He who has believed in God and continues in zeal for Him is worthy before Him. Jesus said, “O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me” (John 17:25). Continuing in zeal acts as a measure to the knowledge God sent Christ. The moment we step away from it we work to lose the substance of that which we have known. This makes us unworthy before God. Being with zeal is a work of the heavenly realm. With this in mind let us explore the possibilities that keep us worthy before Christ.
1. Living in innocence. The life of the apostle Paul is a cue to this to all who desire to be worthy before God. Luke in Acts 25:25 records the words of Festus. “But I found that he had committed nothing worthy of death; and since he himself appealed to the Emperor, I decided to send him.” How difficult it is to lead an innocent life! And yet, it is not impossible. For God in Christ is the one who leads us in the innocent way, if we on our part yearn for Him. Paul was someone who understood God and the purpose and work of His Christ. Had not Christ appeared, the zeal he had for the Law that is of the Law is spotless. But when he was transformed through Christ’s zeal and realized that Christ is of God, he yearned for the God in Christ. Committing acts worthy of death will bereave us of God’s help. They bring sin into us and cause death to the relationship we have with God. They necessitate punishment by discipline.
2. Supporting the ministry of Christ. The apostle Paul was very particular of it when it came to believers. He taught them of it and encouraged them for it that they would not distance themselves from the righteous duty they have toward God. The centurion too, though a gentile, did good works according to the Law and the will of God. He built a synagogue for the Jews and became worthy of Christ’s help. He did it, since he loved God’s nation. Involving ourselves in the service of Christ in the means He dictated to us is one of the key factors to receiving His help. But first we ought to have loved His people; it comes from practicing the desire for God. And Paul even makes the argument that such service multiplies greatly the things we have; for we increase the yield of our righteousness from God’s abundant provision. Supporting the service of Christ is in itself a ministry. So, Paul said, “Because of the proof given by this ministry, they will glorify God for your obedience to your confession of the gospel of Christ and for the liberality of your contribution to them and to all” (2 Cor. 9:13).
3. Being wise. “Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction” (2 Thess. 2:3). When with zeal, we do not allow ourselves to be deceived. We can be a Jew to the Jew, a gentile to the gentile, weak to the weak or believer to the so-called believer, and yet, never allow ourselves to be deceived. Being wise means we know full well the truth of the gospel. We do not run to places to understand Christ. We are not shaken by the messages of false preachers or be confused by the false knowledge of men who claim to know God. We are not tricked by those whom we serve in order that Christ is found in them.
4. Reveling in obedience to God. “For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands” (1 Pet. 3:5). It is not merely our outer look that makes us worthy before Christ, but obedience of our heart. Obedience symbolizes purity for God. Although Peter speaks of women, it can be extended to all when we consider Christ as the head of the church. Simplicity in righteousness helps to revel in obedience.
5. Permitting God to use us. We should never think performing God’s will as one time effort. Neither should we think that one effort is all we can do. The Lord is able to use us as many times as possible when we continually submit to Him. So, we see the following of the apostle John. “And they said to me, ‘You must prophesy again concerning many peoples and nations and tongues and kings’” (Rev. 10:11). The Lord delights in using us for His purpose by whatever way He chose. And, it is a blessing we are being called by Him for as long as we live.
As we consider the above possibilities and do them, we stand worthy before Christ all the days of our life. Christ Himself bears witness concerning us before the Father that we are not short of His aid.