The word of God is full of commands. They are the source for God’s wisdom that make possible for the righteousness that is by belief. Abiding those helps complete a person as believer. Every command of God has wisdom that allows for the understanding of another to fulfill the call of God. Obedience to God’s command pleases Him to fill us with wisdom and we explain God and His nature according to His will. Undoubtedly, it is by wisdom that every law and rule of God must be and can be interpreted. So, to fully obey God’s commands is invaluable to us. The greater our wisdom from God, the greater our association with Him will be. God has always valued such association and indeed desires that all men have such association with Him. And, God began guiding men with His commands that they may reach Him. They are required to avoid the great hurdles and traps that constantly capture men for ruin.
When God called Abraham and told him to leave His people and place to a place He showed, it was by a command for the sake of good. The good was Abraham’s association with God. Command came with a promise and made belief possible in him. And, belief was credited to him as righteousness. Abraham became wise in that he found the way to live with God eternally. Therefore, though still in the flesh, he looked for a place that has foundations and is built by God. Our belief in God must become righteousness. This happens when it is first found blameless by God. For belief to be blameless it should be without suspicion and falsity, and be achieved from God. To possess a blameless faith and for it to have a perfect result God gives commands to men. And, to guard the faith achieved God gave Law to His people. “Then Moses summoned all Israel and said to them: “Hear, O Israel, the statutes and the ordinances which I am speaking today in your hearing, that you may learn them and observe them carefully” (Deut. 5:1).
To learn the statutes and ordinances of God is the only way to fear Him. To observe them carefully is the only sign of believing Him. To depart from them is sin. Listen: there is only one way by which we possess faith and keep it utterly blameless. It is by receiving His commands. Surely, it was one command to Abraham from God that he had to believe in. But, it was that one command that made possible a blameless faith. The righteousness that Abraham’s faith resulted is what God desires from men so that He could associate with them. And, the faith which Abraham possessed toward God indicated the need for God’s statutes and ordinances. In order to keep a blameless faith in a nation there was a need for a system that would guard it. That system was learning and observing the statutes and ordinances of God. So, one who had a blameless faith also had to learn God’s statutes and observe them carefully. For a blameless faith needed to observe the blameless Law to produce a people that is blameless. For this reason, the calling of God always carries the highest importance. As God calls us by way of command, He calls us to the faith of Abraham. This faith becomes the reason for us to learn and observe His perfect law.
Abraham too observed God’s ordinance. His faith compelled him to do so. Therefore, he kept receiving commands from God that his faith might glorify Him. He traveled to all the places which God showed. He even did not hesitate to offer Isaac as an offering at God’s command. Yet, because of his blameless faith, he knew that God was able to raise people even from the dead. Having believed he offered his only son and received him back from the dead. Such faith was possible only by receiving the command. For this reason, the word of God is given. And, it is true that when everything we do as children of God hinges on His commands, we walk unparalleled distances that are unknown to this world. If on the contrary, the effect is adverse.
“The archers shot King Josiah, and the king said to his servants, ‘Take me away, for I am badly wounded’” (2 Chron. 35:23). It was Josiah’s interference with God’s command that had him killed by pharaoh Neco of Egypt. The command of God to pharaoh was against Assyria. Yet, Josiah, king of Judah, did not listen to the words of Neco that were from the mouth of God. His faith required blamelessness. Or, had he sought for God’s command, his faith would have been blameless. He would have had the wisdom to refrain from meeting Neco. But, He did not regard his faith to be directed by God’s command. This suggests that he suspected God’s purpose in revealing Himself to someone like Neco, the Egyptian. Had God wanted him to go against Neco, would He have not told him? Besides, he had just a while ago celebrated the Passover which had not been done in Israel since the days of the prophet Samuel. Blameless faith is quite different to a faith that many possess. It is appropriated only by the commands received from the God of heaven and earth. By it the righteousness of God shines revealing the difference between the living and the dead. Blameless faith that is based on God’s commands does not interpret on its own. It has the righteousness to act upon the wisdom gained from God’s commands. It knows the will of God. If it is yours, “your gates will be open continually; they will not be closed day or night, so that men may bring to you the wealth of the nations, with their kings led in procession” (Isa. 60:11).
This is the effect God gave to those who will believe Him. In fact, a blameless faith is what God desires from all the churches of Christ and of God. Many are quick to define faith, primarily because God has already defined it in His word. Their defining perhaps does little good. Should God then not have defined faith? Not at all; had He not defined it, we would have been like those without heritage. But when God said faith to be a substance and a conviction, the present churches look to a different interpretation. They lost the emphasis of what God desires. Their haphazard nature or unsystematic belief is the reason. Whether you hope for something and believe to see something that you have not seen, it is only possible through faith. Yet, how is it that one can have faith without him possessing the substance and conviction that comes from God? If one has not known how faith works on a day to day basis while on this earth, he does not have the proper evidence for the faith that gives heaven. What then is the conclusion? His faith is not blameless. He cannot abide by the perfect law.
Nonetheless, Abraham had proper evidence when God called him and took him to places, when He said he would have a son through Sarah and when he believed he would receive his son back from the dead. His evidence was from God’s command. Therefore, the Spirit of God elsewhere also testifying to Abraham’s faith said that he was looking for a better country. How amazing is it that Abraham looked for a heavenly place while not having seen Christ or having heard of the resurrection of the dead? The simple answer is faith through God’s command. It made him travel unparalleled distances that are unknown to the naïve. It was not any faith, but blameless faith that worked in him on a day to day basis. His faith had the substance to hope and the conviction to see the unseen, and they were from God. It was above suspicion and falsity. Because of such faith the many present day churches, which have greater evidence for Christ and the resurrection of the dead, are nowhere near to Abraham and his association with God. And a prophet once said, “He remembers his nobles; they stumble in their march, they hurry to her wall, and the mantelet is set up” (Nah. 2:5).
Why did they stumble? Why did they hurry? It was because they were with blame. They entered the mantelet that is about to be destroyed. This will be the fate of the churches that do not have blameless faith. They will seek refuge on that day, but cannot escape. Having understood the wrath of God against the disobedient, Moses beforehand warned Israel of their behavior toward Him. God again said blessings to those who obey and curses to those who disobey. And Christ also not ignoring His brethren according to the flesh said, “But woe to you Pharisees! For you pay tithe of mint and rue and every kind of garden herb, and yet disregard justice and the love of God; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others” (Luke 11:42). What is the source of justice and love of God? Is it not blameless faith? Surely, the churches have been accustomed to the works done outside the body, but not of the heart. Did not Christ say that to love God is the foremost command and then to love his neighbor as himself as the second? One cannot love God without blameless faith. And, one cannot do justice unless he first comes to know the love of God toward him. Therefore, it is necessary that one receive command from God that results in blameless faith. Dear brethren, consider the severity of this word – “In the generations gone by He permitted all the nations to go their own ways” (Acts 14:16).
What does it mean except that He is not willing for the present generations to go their own ways? In those days he endured their wickedness, since He did not call them His nation. But now as He is willing to save those who believe through the foolishness of the message preached, He will not endure. The perfect means to escape His wrath is to believe in the message preached. The message is about having a blameless faith in God that helps us seek the kind of country that Abraham sought. It is for this reason that Christ appeared in the flesh, died and rose up to heaven that we would escape God’s wrath. And, those who are of blameless faith are aware of the day that gives them the better country. “And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain” (1 Cor. 15:14).