A Study of the Will of God for the Christian

Lesson Twelve

Memory Verse:  1 Corinthians 12:27    Lesson Verses:  Romans 12:1,2


"I beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."  Romans 12:1,2


I.    Introduction

A.  A famous preacher once said that "a successful man is one who finds out what God wants him to accomplish with his life, and then fulfills it." Therefore, the true measure of a man's success is not in his social status, his bank account, his influence, or his fame. It simply is doing what God wants him to do.

B.   This lesson will acquaint the Christian with how to find what Godís will is for them, as revealed in the Bible, so he can begin to live the abundant Christian life in the centre of God's perfect will!


II.  Understanding The Will of God


Let's first understand some things:


  1. Most people are self-willed by nature. They do what they do because they want to. The Christian's actions however, are not to be driven by self, but rather by God. Can you give a verse that says such? ___________.

  2. God created you for His glory and _____________ (Rev 4:11), and therefore, not for yours (1 Cor 6:19,20). That may come as a surprise!

  3. There are two kinds of wills that God has for a person - His general, all encompassing will for people everywhere; and His specific will for each individual.

  4. Before God reveals His specific plan to an individual, that individual must be submitted to God's authority over his or her life. Every person must want to not only find God's plan, but already be willing to do it no matter what it happens to be! Why try and tell someone specifically what to do with their life, when you know they won't do it?

  5. The key rests in whether you are truly interested in not just knowing the will of God, but more importantly, interested in DOING it (Romans 8:5; James 1:22)!

III. God's General Will is Found in His Word, the Bible

A.  You will never discover God's will without the Bible, because God has given seven foundational instructions/plans for all mankind to live by.

B.   God's general will for all of mankind is to:


1.      Be __________ (1 Tim 2:4; 2 Pet 3:9)! Everyone must begin here!

2.      Be filled with the ___________ (Eph 5:17,18). A surrendering of your life to the work and authority of God over your will and plans.

3.      Be thankful in _______ things (Eph 5:19,20; 1 Thess 5:18)

4.      Be submissive servants in everything you do (Eph 6:5-8), remembering "ye serve the _________  __________" (Col 3:23,24). This includes submitting to all the laws of the land (1 Pet 2:13-15).

5.      Be sanctified (1 Thess 4:3-7). Sanctification means that we separate ourselves from sins and evils so that we can be holy and clean objects in God's hands (2 Tim 2:21). This involves every Christian coming away from all the activities and influences that hinder us from serving the Lord with our whole heart (2 Cor 6:17,18).

6.      That we are to sometimes ______________ (1 Pet 3:14-17; 4:19).

7.      That all Christians ultimately become conformed to the image of God's Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom 8:28,29).


If you are not currently obeying God's clearly revealed will for your life (the above list), then God can never reveal His specific will to you because the one builds upon the other (Matt 25:21).


IV. Finding God's Specific Will For Your Life


A.  The specific will of God for your life is just an extension of the general will of God for all of mankind. Therefore, the will of God for your life will not violate His general will - there are no "exceptions to the rule," and God's will never contradicts His word.

B.   Finding God's specific will is referred to as "proving" it, to yourself and to the world (Rom 12:1,2). Whatever you discover, will have to be proven as being God's will for you. God expects you to live His plans. This requires you to "sacrifice" your plans and goals, and replace them with His!

C.  Let the word of God "speak" to your heart. God speaks directly to you through the Bible (Like Gen 12:1 where Abraham is told to leave his family and go to a place that God would lead him to). You must therefore be saturating your mind with Scriptures so that God can "talk."

D.  One of the main purposes of the Spirit of God in your life is to guide you in your decisions (John 14:26; 16:13; 1 Cor 2:9,10). When making decisions, especially ones that you are unsure of yourself, pray, and seek both wisdom (James 1:5), and the confirmation of the Holy Spirit before proceeding (Rom 8:14).

E.   Wait for God to "open doors" of opportunity. Sometimes, when we just "push ahead," we find ourselves forcing through blocked "doors" that God intended for us to keep out of (like marrying the wrong person, or working at the wrong job). The Apostle Paul sensed God blocking his path several times so that he would ultimately find the right path (Acts 16:6-10). Learn to accept circumstances as guideposts in the direction of God's leading (Just "___________ in the steps of the Lord," Ps 37:23).

F.   Finally, make sure that in your decisions, you "______ in the Lord with ALL thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding," (Prov 3:5,6). God's will does not always make sense - but it is always best! Therefore, when you find God's will, you will have ______ (Psalm 37:37), because He knows best! A Christian's attitude must be to let God's "_____" be done, not our own (James 4:13-15)


V.  Some Discussion


Work through the following issues in life, and discuss how you would go about finding God's will in the various situations. Think of some additional helpful Scriptures that would guide you in finding Godís will for each issue.


  Concerning Marriage  - decide what qualifications would God have for you to choose from? (2 Cor 6:14; Dt 10:12)  Ask yourself, Is the person saved? Are they faithful in seeking God's will, or only self-centered? Are they mature, or childish? Have you sought wisdom about your desires from your parents (God wants us to honour them, and seek their counsel)? _____________________________________________________________

   Finding a job - what would be important for a Christian to look for in a job, and how would the Christian know it is the right one for him or her? What kind of job should be accepted? When is it time to leave a job? _________ ____________________________________________________________

   How do I find my ministry that the Lord has for me? Is God looking for talent or availability (Philp 4:13,19; 1Cor 15:58)? Am I worried about people's impressions of me, or pleasing God? _______________________ ____________________________________________________________

  Hearing God's Call to Preach? (Mt 9:35-38; Luke 14:16-24; Acts 13:1-4; 2Tim 4:1-4) _________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________


Key Truths about God's Will


v      It will never contradict His written word!

v      It will cost you to live it.

v      It is built upon the seven general wills for all man-kind - you cannot short-cut those to do what you want to do.

v      It is found through prayer, and getting counsel from mature Christians and your pastor.