Sermons of David Chadwell
THY WILL BE DONE ON EARTH
Click here to listen to this sermon read by Greg McAbee.
The statement, "Thy will be done," is a familiar, acceptable, good statement.
That statement to most of us is comfortable and non-threatening. It has a ring
of loyalty and devotion about it that should be a part of every Christian's
prayer and hope. Most of us would agree that things are better when God's will
is done. God's will is good, not bad.
Most of us understand that statement. We agree that we are speaking of God's
will. We agree what God wishes should be done. We Christians agree that we
should be devoted to achieving God's will. We would say there is no mystery in
that statement, that all Christians understand it.
We not only understand that phrase, but we also use it. We most often use it
when making a request of God for a specific blessing. It would be inappropriate
and impossible to dictate what God must do. We do not wish to sound like
arrogant, haughty people who feel superior to God. So, we submissively pray,
"Thy will be done."
There is a particular prayer we used to say often in which we used that phrase.
We called it the Lord's Prayer; it is found in Matthew 6. In the past it closed
a school room devotional, closed a devotional at public functions, and often was
used when churches gathered. Likely, most people did not think much about what
they said--they just said the expected words.
In that prayer, we said more than, "Thy will be done." We said, "Thy will be
done, on earth as it is in heaven." "Thy will be done," does not sound strange,
but, "on earth as it is in heaven," may sound a bit strange. Have you ever given
serious thought to God's will being done on earth as it is in heaven?
- The most obvious fact in that statement is that God has a will.
- What does it mean for God to have a will?
- It means God has purposes that are important to Him, that will be accomplished.
- It means God has reasons for (1) what He does and (2) what He wants, and nothing
is insignificant about any of His reasons.
- It means God is motivated or moved by His purposes and reasons--He has a
specific objective in all He says and wants.
- The purposes, reasons, and motives are not given to God by humans.
- We do not assign God His purposes, reasons, or motives.
- God does not act or function because we decide what He should do or why He
should do it.
- God is not some senile grandfather who exists in some remote sphere afflicted
with a feeble mentality.
- He does not need to be told what He thinks or wants.
- He is not dependent on us to decide what He thinks or how He feels.
- The living God knows what He wants and why He wants it.
- His will is founded on good reason and wise purposes.
- In every consideration, God's purposes, reasons, and understanding is superior
- What does it mean for God's will to be done?
- God's intent rules!
- His purposes determine the course and direction for people who belong to Him.
- His will definitely impacts all who respect and reverence Him.
- It has a negative impact: those people will not rebel against His wishes.
- It has a positive impact: those people will serve Him as they seek to accomplish
- How is God's will done in heaven?
- Scripture does not give us much information about the order of the heavenly
sphere, but the little information given forms a specific impression.
- God is held in absolute honor and reverence.
- Heavenly beings are honored to fulfill God's wishes.
- God's purposes are fulfilled without questioning or resistance.
- His purposes are the only purposes.
- No angel would say,
- "We will think about it and let you know later."
- "We prefer not to do that."
- "We are not interested in your concerns because those concerns are not important
- God's will in heaven is done in total submission to His purposes and desires.
- It is God's desire through Christ that the divine will be done in human life in
the same manner it is done in the heavenly sphere.
- What would that mean?
- Human life would hold God in absolute honor and reverence.
- Human life would be honored and pleased to fulfill God's wishes and desires.
- Human life would fulfill God's wishes and desires without rebellion or
- Human life would consider God's purposes as the only true purposes.
- God's purposes would always take precedence.
- God's purposes would always be the deciding factor.
- Human life would do God's will completely through total submission.
- Your reaction: "Impossible! That cannot happen and will not happen under any
- If I asked, "Why?" what would be your answer?
- "Too many people will never submit to God's will under any circumstance!"
- "Rulers, power merchants, world politicians, the wealthy, and the wicked will
never seek any will but their own."
- Does that mean God's will can never be done on earth as it is in heaven?
- Is the only way God's will can be done on earth as it is in heaven for all
people to surrender themselves to God?
- If the whole world does not agree to do God's will on earth, does that mean no
one can do God's will on earth?
- At least once God's will has been done on earth precisely as it is done in
- When was God's will done on earth precisely as it is done in heaven? In Jesus'
life and death!
- Consider God's will in Jesus' life.
- In John 4 Jesus traveled through Samaria with his disciples.
- Jesus stopped at the well Jacob dug (near Sychar) to rest while the disciples
went to get food.
- Jesus was tired, hungry, and thirsty when the disciples left.
- While the disciples were gone, Jesus had his famous conversation with the
- When the disciples returned with food, Jesus would not eat.
- He declared he had food to eat they knew nothing about.
- Jesus said in John 4:34:
My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and
to accomplish His work.
- In John 5:30, as part of a tense discussion about proper actions on the
Sabbath day, Jesus said in
I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My
judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who
- In John 6, Jesus taught he was the bread of life just as was the manna. In verse
38 he said:
"For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will
of Him who sent Me."
- The absolute importance of God's will to Jesus is seen beyond doubt in the
Garden of Gethsemane.
- He knew his betrayal and death would happen soon.
- He did not wish to die and assume an enormous burden in death.
- He prayed fervently not to die.
Matthew 26:39, And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed,
saying, My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I
will, but as You will.
Matthew 26:42, He went away again a second time and prayed, saying, My Father,
if this cannot pass away unless I drink it, Your will be done.
- God's will was the determining factor in everything Jesus did in life and death.
- Consider the emphasis Jesus placed on others doing God's will.
- In Mark 3, his mother and brothers came to talk to him as he taught.
- He was informed his family wished to see him.
- This was his answer in verse 35:
"For whoever does the will of God, he is My brother and sister and mother.
- True kinship with Jesus is maintained by doing God's will.
- In Matthew 7:21 Jesus said,
Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but
he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.
- In John 7:17 Jesus declared to people who doubted him:
If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know of the teaching, whether it is
of God or whether I speak from Myself.
- Jesus is the perfect example of God's will being done on earth as it is in
- He also is proof the choice to do God's will is made by the individual.
- His world was even more wicked and discouraging than our society is.
- It is not what our world says; it is what we say!
- Christians need a clear understanding of God's will in their lives.
- As with Jesus, the determining fact in our concerns and actions must be God's
- It is God's will that gave us our spiritual existence.
- James 1:18, In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth,
so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.
- John 1:12,13, But as many as received Him, to
them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in
His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the
will of man, but of God.
- The moment we perceive God's will in a matter, that perception determines what
we should do.
- We conscientiously consider God's will in every matter.
- "How does this choice affect God's purposes?"
- "Will this allow me to function for God as I should?"
- "How will this affect God's concerns and interests?"
- "How will this affect his kingdom?"
- "How will this affect me as His representative?"
- "Will this place me in rebellion to God?"
- God's will is the Christian's ultimate rationale and formative influence.
- All knowledgeable Christians acknowledge it is their responsibility to be living
Romans 12:1,2 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present
your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your
spiritual service of worship.
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of
your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and
acceptable and perfect.
- We exist to seek and submit to God's will.
- That is a lifetime, never-ending Christian objective.
- In practical terms, what does that mean?
- I want to grow where He wants me to grow.
- I want to change where He wants me to change.
- I want to learn from Him.
- I want to cease being what He does not want me to be.
- I want to become what He wants me to be.
The question is not will there ever be a time when the whole world does God's
will as it is done in heaven. The question is will each of us do God's will now
as it is done in heaven? It happened in Jesus' life when he lived in a wicked
age. Will it happen in your life?
It begins by your submission of your life and will to Jesus Christ.
sermon posted 10 April 2007
Link to next sermon
Link to other Writings of David