HOW TO KNOW GOD’S WILL
“Most people speak of God’s will as something you have or don’t have. ‘Have you discovered God’s will for your life?’, they ask each other. What they usually mean is, ‘Have you discovered God’s blueprint for your life?’ But the fact is that God seldom reveals an entire blueprint. So if you are looking for that blueprint in its entirety, you are likely to be disappointed. What God does most frequently reveal, however, is the next step in His will.” - Paul Little
I. GOD DOES HAVE A PLAN FOR US
A. Read the following verses, note especially the promises.
Ps. 73:24 _______________________________________________________________________
Ps. 32:8 ________________________________________________________________________
Prov. 3:5-6 _____________________________________________________________________
Ps. 25:8-9 ______________________________________________________________________
B. What conclusions can you draw from these verses? _____________________________________
C. God’s will can be divided into two aspects. FIRST, His general will which has already been revealed in His Word and applies to every Christian. SECOND, His specific will which relates to you personally, for which there may not be a Scriptural command.
From the following verses, what do you discover to be His general will for you as a Christian?
1 Thess. 4:3-4 ___________________________________________________________________
1 Thess. 5:18 ___________________________________________________________________
1 Pet. 2:15 ______________________________________________________________________
Col. 3:16-17 ____________________________________________________________________
2 Pet. 3:18 ______________________________________________________________________
D. Many other verses could be given to point out other things that are God’s will for you. Write down at least six other things that you know are God’s will for you and every other Christian.
The vast majority of God’s will for your life has already been clearly revealed in the Bible. A.W. Tozer pointed out that we should never seek guidance on what God has already forbidden. Nor should we ever seek guidance in the areas where He has already said yes and given us a command.
II. PREREQUISITES FOR SPECIAL GUIDANCE
His general will for you and every Christian is clearly revealed in Scripture. His specific will is not always as easy. The following prerequisites are essential for all who would find His specific will.
A. You must be a Christian.
What does Jesus say is necessary if we are to do the work (or will) of God, according to John 6:28-29? _______________________________________________________________________
Who does the shepherd lead, according to John 10:3-4? __________________________________
B. You must be willing to obey what you already know to be His will. How do the following verses relate to this statement?
John 14:21 _____________________________________________________________________
John 15:14-15 ___________________________________________________________________
John 3:36 ______________________________________________________________________
C. You must be willing to accept His will even before you know what it is. What is necessary before knowledge, according to these verses?
John 7:17 ______________________________________________________________________
Ps. 25:14 _______________________________________________________________________
III. PRINCPLES OF DECISION-MAKING
The will of God is not like a magic package let down from heaven by a string. The will of God is far more like a scroll that unrolls every day. The will of God is something to be grasped as a package once for all. Our call, therefore, is basically not to follow a plan or a blueprint, or to go to a place or take up a work, but rather to follow the Lord Jesus Christ.” – Paul Little
A. What does Rom. 12:1-2 teach about finding God’s will? _________________________________
How is a person’s mind renewed? ___________________________________________________
B. How do you gain an understanding of God’s will? ______________________________________
Ps. 37:31 _______________________________________________________________________
Ps. 119:105, 130 _________________________________________________________________
C. What other element is necessary for God’s will?
Ps. 143:8 _______________________________________________________________________
Ja. 1:5 _________________________________________________________________________
Are you concerned enough about finding God’s will that you will spend five minutes a day in prayer asking Him to reveal it? ________
D. Whose guidance can we be assured of as we seek God’s will?
John 16:13 _____________________________________________________________________
E. Read Ps. 27:14 & Isa. 30:18. How does “waiting on the Lord” relate to knowing God’s will? How does a person do it? __________________________________________________________
Satan rushes men, God guides them.
F. What principle is clear from the following proverbs?
Prov. 15:22 _____________________________________________________________________
Prov 12:15 _____________________________________________________________________
Prov. 11:14 _____________________________________________________________________
G. What can we know to be true about God’s will for us?
Jer. 29:11-14a ___________________________________________________________________
H. What are some other factors that can help you discern God’s leading? Match the following verses with the appropriate phrase.
____________________ Careful & wise thinking a. Col. 3:15
____________________ Inner spiritual peace b. Rom. 13:1
____________________ Legal obligations c. Eph. 5:15-17
I. The following questions may be helpful to ask as you discern God’s will.
Am I putting God’s desire ahead of my own?
Will it help me love God and others more?
Will it help me fulfill the Great Commission?
Will it help me lead a more holy life?
Will it bring glory to Christ?
Will it help my brother or sister in the Lord to come closer to Him?
J. Summarize the insights and principles which you have learned to help you in discerning God’s will.
Commit yourself to doing the will of God even before you know what it is. Realize that God is already working in your life; then press forward, launching out in what seems best after prayer, study, counsel and seeking His peace, thanking God for whatever comes, know that His will for your life is good, pleasing and perfect.