It is a general consensus among people that all things done by men, whether good or bad, will have a result. The saying “what goes around comes around” is commonly used to indicate that there will be an end to every matter. It is born of men, because the history of mankind and experience taught them of it. Yet, people often fail to do good works. Furthermore, they do good works having the base for them in evil and wickedness. Christians are often told from the Bible that they are called for good works and that they should discipline themselves to do the works God appointed to them. Still, many continually fail to do them in their time to give God glory and end up doing the opposite of their calling. Faithful and God-fearing believers are always prepared for good works and do them. They keep away from bad or evil works allowing God to pilot them for good works. It is the nature of the new self in them.
Works are actions that define behavior. So, the way we behave toward ourselves, others and God will have bearing on the kind of works we do. The Scripture clearly states that all acts are judged by the living and Almighty God. “For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil” (Eccl. 12:14). Every act bears fruit. An act is only complete when it bears fruit. God judges it by its fruit. When He judges, He produces consequence. Therefore, when we are walking in the Lord, we do good works and we know that God’s judgment of our works has honorable rewards. As we walk in Him, our works stem from observing His ways. The more we become like Him, the greater our works. Some works are not visible. Yet, they bring forth result, because God judges them; for He sees we followed the ways of the Lord. Again, we wonder if they are being effective. When He is judging them, He is also causing an effect for His namesake. Because He called us for good works, He takes it on Him to wonderfully work for them.
Nevertheless, when we fail to do good works, it shows a change in our behavior toward God. It ultimately impacts the way we treat ourselves and others. There are many good works to which God wants to appoint us. If you are unclear as to what works He wants from you, seek His mind. He will let His thoughts flow into you by guiding you with His Word. Remember these things when He leads you to good works: His lovingkindness is everlasting; He is good; He works all things for your good. These are not my words, but are in the Word. They apply to all who act according to His will. Failure to understand them will shrink a person from doing good. Then, he or she inevitably does evil. The moment they stop good works it gives an opening for evil ones. For a person is always occupied with either one of them. And, men who do evil receive the wrath of God. “Egypt rises like the Nile, Even like the rivers whose waters surge about; And He has said, ‘I will rise and cover that land; I will surely destroy the city and its inhabitants’” (Jer. 46:8).
God hates evil; therefore, He hates works born of it. It grieves Him when His children are not occupied with good works, for He knows the outcome. It is indeed good for all to keep asking Him to lead to good works. It preserves our life for His glory. Though we face difficulties, He takes us through. For His power is unlimited, unaccounted, but is felt. “Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies’” (John 11:25). If He was able to raise Lazarus from the dead, there is nothing impractical to Him. The substance He requires from us is belief. Because of it, i.e. ‘that God will carry us through,’ we reach the goals He set for us. In reaching them He provides us opportunities to perform others. Therefore, we love others; pray for them in secret, help those in need, etc. Martha knew Lazarus will rise again on the day of resurrection, but his death made it impossible for her to believe that Jesus is also for ‘the now and the present.’ There are times we feel we have come to a dead end and face a challenge for belief. Continuing to believe that He is able creates the way for our works. For if He has called us for good works He will not let us fail. Knowing this is such a mountain of strength. It gives the will to hope in Him.
When we perform good works, our behavior is modified. God continually sanctifies us for His works. Unless we have works from God, we cannot do good to Him and to men. The works of the world never turns us good, much less be the cause for our sanctification. God takes the initiative to sanctify us through His works, since they are of Him and for Him; they are not found in the flesh; they are holy and perfect. By them He makes us a blessing to many. When He judges our actions, we know He is good. So, Paul said, “Only, as the Lord has assigned to each one, as God has called each, in this manner let him walk. And so I direct in all the churches” (1 Cor. 7:17). It is necessary to know that which the Lord has appointed to each one of us so that we do not do evil deeds. We must always make sure of what we must do and if it is from God. If we are not alert, the devil will deceive us for works that are not for God’s glory. Many are being deceived with works thinking to bring praise and glory to God. When the Lord has not assigned them to them, they are not walking in Him, but in the intent of the one who deceived them. This too is an evil act which God brings to judgment.
Walking in the Lord has a soothing and calming effect on us. It is for this reason that we gain greater understanding of His works to us and continue in them. There is no rushing or intimidation. Because of its positive effect, we do not make unwise efforts, but feel the power of God working with us. His works are not short-lived; performing them is a journey. God uses every work He assigns us to bring maximum result that is without blemish. Therefore, “Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision” (Phil. 3:2). There are many men with varying doctrines that can impose their will upon you. These cannot decide between the works of God and of the devil. They ask you to do works with an evil intent. They often guide people with the impulses of the flesh. They are cleansed, but only in the flesh. They drive you to do works in God’s name while it is God who assigns you works to please Him. And then there are those who discourage you from doing the work God assigns to you. In contrast, the approach and attitude of a God’s messenger toward you is like this: “Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers” (3 John 1:2), because he has taught you of all the good will of God toward you and because you walk according to that which the Lord assigned to you.
Therefore, dear brethren, find out from the Lord the good works He has in store for you. If you are not eager for them, there is the danger of doing the opposite of them. He will always have good things reserved for you. Whatever He asks you to do it is for your benefit and His glory. Will you not take time to seek Him today? Listen to His gentle voice from the Word. He desires to bless you with good health and prosperity, and for this reason, desires that you do good. He is a holy God with perfect principles. So, if you desire to seek Him for good works, be willing to do that which He says. “Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but what matters is the keeping of the commandments of God” (1 Cor. 7:19).