Delayed Obedience is Disobedience

Have you ever asked your child to stop playing their video game, wash up and come to the dinner table because dinner is being served and nothing happens? You ask a couple of more times, a little louder and still no response. Finally in desperation and exasperation, you go to the den and scream at them to stop playing their game and come to dinner. They wash up and sit at the table and you admonish them for not coming and they say, but I’m here.

At that juncture, a child needs to be taught that delayed obedience is disobedience. They should have responded the moment they heard you instead of ignoring the command. By the way, they need to know that it was a command and not a request.

As Christians, we also need to remember that as children of God, delayed obedience is disobedience.

In chapters 13 and 14 of the Book of Numbers, the people of Israel were fearful of entering into the Promised Land because ten of the twelve spies sent to reconnoiter the land gave a bad report (Numbers 13:26-33). Two of the spies, Joshua and Caleb, gave a “thumbs up” to entering the land because they believed in what God could do. However, in the minds of the people, majority ruled even though God promised them the land.

After hearing a rebuke from the Lord, the next morning, they decided to enter the land, but it was too late… delayed obedience is disobedience. Because of their delayed obedience, they were required to wander in the wilderness for forty years (Numbers 14:25-35). It was a consequence of their disobedience

The experience of the people of Israel is a lesson for us today. It is a prime example of how delayed obedience is really disobedience. However, God being a merciful and just God eventually kept His promise and they occupied the land just as He said they would.

Is there an area of your life, where you are delaying your obedience? For instance, the Word of God instructs new believers to be baptized and you are well aware of that fact, but are, nevertheless, delaying your baptism. Are you being disobedient?

Remember, delayed obedience is disobedience.

Something to think about…