2 THESSALONIANS 1:8
“dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.”
When you were a child did you ever get in trouble for not listening to your parents? Boy, I sure did. I could be a disobedient little booger. I would clearly hear my dad’s or mom’s instructions and do the exact opposite. I knew the risk, weighed my options and proceeded to do what I wanted. Sometimes, I got away with it. But other times, I paid for it.
You can’t read this verse separate from the previous verse. Jesus is going to return, and when He does, He will deal out retribution on those who did not listen to His instructions. That’s what the word “obey” means. It is actually a very strong verb (hupakouo). The hupon the beginning of that word intensifies the verb akouo. So, it means to really listen so you will obey.
If you can’t figure out how to apply this verse to your kids, well…. Don’t we constantly deal with getting our kids to listen to us? Aren’t we always teaching them to obey our instructions? When was the last time you gave them directions on something? Two seconds ago, lol? It’s constant, but purposeful.
Why not read them this verse? Jesus expects the same, but the consequences for not listening to His instructions are eternal. There is no time out or loss of privileges. No! If your children disobey Him by not listening to His commands, they risk spending eternity without Him. That’s harsh, but it’s the truth. Remember, our teaching our children to obey is preparation for obeying their Heavenly Father.
Enough about children. Are you obeying? We, as adults, must continue to obey the Lord’s commands. We don’t graduate out of this. In fact, it is often harder for us to obey because we are adults. As a man, I don’t want anyone to tell me what to do. I want to make my own choices. And I can, but I cannot choice my own consequences. I choose obedience today.
Father God, thank You for clear instructions. Thank You for saving me from myself. I choose to follow You and obey.