[Deuteronomy 28:1 – 7]
“Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the LORD your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth.  “All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the LORD your God:  “Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country.  “Blessed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground and the offspring of your beasts, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock.  “Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl.  “Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out.  “The LORD shall cause your enemies who rise up against you to be defeated before you; they will come out against you one way and will flee before you seven ways.”
Dear brothers and sisters,
This is the third session on ‘Blessings’. Until the last session, I talked about the first condition to receive blessing, which is about the words and commandments of God. I hope you can check how willingly you kept the words and commandments of God from the depth of your heart. Those who love God and have faith in Him will obey His words and commandments without utilizing their fleshly thoughts.
Dear brothers and sisters,
The second aspect that we will look into to receive blessings is what it is to truly obey.
Verse 2 from the reading passage says, “All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the LORD your God.” True and strict meaning of obedience is to do with the eyes of faith something that you cannot really do if you consider the current situation. In other words, it is not to do something you can do but to do something you cannot do with faith. There are things that we cannot obey and do if we utilize human thoughts and theories, and true obedience is to obey and do such things.
But in fact, even though men think they are absolutely impossible, in the sight of God, they are certainly things that can be done. So, the knowledge, experience, and way of thinking that we acquired in this world become obstacles to having spiritual faith. If there is anything that is beyond human knowledge, it seems impossible to men, but for God there is nothing impossible.
One of the biblical best examples of obedience is Abraham, the father of faith. He became the source of blessings and he was called a friend of God by obeying God. Genesis 12:1-2 says, “Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father’s house, To the land which I will show you;  And I will make you a great nation, And I will bless you, And make your name great; And so you shall be a blessing;”
What would you have done if you put yourself in his shoes? Hebrews 11:8 says, “By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going.” Abraham was 75 years old at that time, and because he did not have any children, his relatives must have meant the whole world to him.
Especially, God did not even tell him where to go but just commanded him to depart from his homeland and relatives. So, it was very difficult to obey the command if you have human thoughts. But Abraham believed the word of God and obeyed it. As a result he became the father of faith and received abundant blessings later.
Now, let us check how obedient we have been compared to Abraham. How did you act when things were not in agreement with your opinions, or not beneficial for you, or were different from your plans? Now you are obeying voluntarily in the flow of spirit, but until recently, disobedience was rampant among you.
You were disobeying in every matter. You were always disobeying so you did not even realize that you were disobeying. But of course, you disobey because either you are not willing to obey or because you are not able. But even though you are not able, if you do not even try with an obedient heart, it is same as disobeying voluntarily.
In order for you to realize what your attitudes were and to be changed, let me briefly mention seven types of disobedience.
First, you disobey because your capabilities are lacking.
When your seniors tell you to do something, you do not have the knowledge, experience, or the capability to follow the instructions, and thus you eventually disobey. In this case, some people know right from the beginning that they cannot fulfill the task, so they don’t even begin to try.
But even though you are not capable enough, the obedient attitude counts. You have to try to overcome your limitations step by step. There is nothing impossible in the Lord, and thus, if you rely on God in everything, you will be supplied with the grace and strength of God to be able to do more than your own ability.
Second, you disobey even though you can obey.
It means you have the ability to do something but you don’t do it. Such people have laziness, so they don’t want to take any instructions or orders from others.
Also, some are worried about the responsibility they have to take when things do not go well. So, they just keep quiet or do not actively get involved in certain work. And yet they think there are no problems because they do will not be held responsible for anything later. They don’t even think they are disobeying. But such people have to realize that their heart is evil, and that they cannot overcome their limitations either.
If you think a certain work is your own, you will not disobey in the way explained above. Especially, if a certain work is for God’s kingdom, you have to expend more effort than when you do your own work.
Third, you stop at a point because you are not able to finish the job.
Such people do not have any sense of responsibility. If you cannot fulfill a certain task, it is obviously required of you that you have to try your best even by utilizing other ways within the limits of the truth to follow the instructions or to finish the job.
For example, if you are given a work that you cannot do very well, you might have to ask for advice or cooperation from others who are good at it, so that the job can be done and you can give the credit to them. But because you are greedy you just try to do it all by yourself and ruin the job. In this way you cannot gain more competence. It is disobedience caused by your selfish desires and the desire to be recognized. It also becomes an obstacle in accomplishing the kingdom of God.
But in some cases, you get the help from others to finish the job, but you give all the credit to yourself only. It is because you want to be revealed and recognized. Such people will just stop working if it seems like the credit is going to somebody else.
Fourth, you disobey because things do not agree with your thoughts.
God told Jonah to go to the city of Nineveh and proclaim to them to repent of their sins. But because Nineveh was their enemy, Jonah wanted it to be destroyed. So, in disobedience to the word of God he ran away to Tarshish, the opposite direction of Nineveh.
Some people disobey because of their self-righteousness, thinking they are right in something. Such people will have to face trials continuously until they break down their fleshly thoughts and obey. Even though something seems so right in our eyes, we have to deny it only if it is the will of God.
Fifth, you try to obey but because you do the things according to your own thoughts, eventually it is disobedience.
Many of you belong to this category. You think you are obeying, but because you are doing things according to your thoughts, the result is that you disobeyed.
In 1 Samuel chapter 15, God told King Saul to kill every person and all animals of Amalek, but Saul brought Amalekite king and saved the good ones from the flock and the herd, killing everything that did not worth very much. Saul thought he was obeying, but he was just following his greed. Because of this, Saul was eventually forsaken by God.
If you have your evil, namely greed, selfish desires or lust, you will eventually disobey knowing the will of God. Therefore, even though you know that you have to obey very well, you should understand, you cannot obey as much as you have evil in you. You can obey according to the will of God completely and not according to your thoughts only after you cast away evil.