Monday, January 24, 2011

Motives: Pleasing Man vs Pleasing God

After reading a friend's blog post, it got me pondering this thought.  When you serve or do an everyday thing...are you pleasing man or pleasing God?  When is it okay to please man (or please man only)?
Doing in act of service pleasing man because they benefit.  What was the motive of the server?  Did the server just do it because they knew it would benefit the man (maybe a man in need)?  What about pleasing the man was the outcome?  Did the act of service please God?  How do you know?
I think it comes down to motives and the heart.

But let's look at the Truth and see what it says.

After reading Psalm 69:30-33 also got me to ponder the idea of being humble.
Consider meditating on that for a moment....

but also be careful not to take it out of context.

30 I will praise the name of God with song And magnify Him with thanksgiving31 And it will please the LORD better than an ox Or a young bull with horns and hoofs32 The humble have seen it and are glad ; You who seek Godlet your heart revive33 For the LORD hears the needy Anddoes not despise His who are prisoners.

Proverbs 21:17
17 Whoever loves pleasure will become poor;
   whoever loves wine and olive oil will never be rich.

When things are enjoyed apart from thanksgiving to God or enjoyed more than following in God's paths, they will destroy a person's life.

In John chapter eight Jesus is talking about Him and the Father.

26 “I have much to say in judgment of you. But he who sent me is trustworthy, and what I have heard from him I tell the world.”
 27 They did not understand that he was telling them about his Father. 28 So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up[a] the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. 29 The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.”

So, "pleasing God" is doing things like-Christ.  How do you know what Christ did or how He would react to every day life?  Read Scripture.  That's one of the reasons why we have alone time with God.  Our desire becomes to know Him and obey Him because our love.  We are broken and His grace and forgiveness allows us to come to Him.  Pleasing God is obeying Him.

Now it is time to read Romans chapter eight.

Life Through the Spirit
 1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you[a] free from the law of sin and death3 For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh,[b] God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering.[c] And so he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
 5 Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires6 The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. 7 The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. 8 Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.
 9 You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. 10 But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life[d] because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of[e] his Spirit who lives in you.

AMEN!!! :)  What a wonderful blessing it is to know that through the Holy Spirit I can have a relationship with my Father in heaven.  If you are living in the flesh, please keep reading that passage from Romans.  If you feel a tug right now, just send me a personal message, better yet....send God a personal message!  He wants to hear from you!  

That passage is saying that if you are doing things through the flesh then it is not pleasing God.  Doing things through Christ is what is pleasing to God.  Can Christians do things that are not pleasing to God?  Yes, unfortunately we do.  We can't do it alone.  We fail alone, because our minds are focused on what the flesh desires.  However, through the Spirit we can have our hearts and minds set on what is pleasing to God.

1 Corinthians 10:23-11:1 Paul talks about how important it is to be like-Christ.  He also mentions what it looks like to please God.

23 “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive. 24 No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.
 25 Eat anything sold in the meat market without raising questions of conscience, 26 for, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.”[a]
 27 If an unbeliever invites you to a meal and you want to go, eat whatever is put before you without raising questions of conscience. 28But if someone says to you, “This has been offered in sacrifice,” then do not eat it, both for the sake of the one who told you and for the sake of conscience. 29 I am referring to the other person’s conscience, not yours. For why is my freedom being judged by another’s conscience? 30 If I take part in the meal with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of something I thank God for?
 31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. 32 Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God— 33 even as I try to please everyone in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved.
 1 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.

Paul continues to talk about pleasing God in 2 Corinthians chapter 5:6-10.  This time we hear more encouragement about the reason why we should obey and please God.  He also talks about how confident we can be in our faith, because it's about living by faith and not by sight.

6 Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. 7 For we live by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9 So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.

Through this confident faith, know that you are not alone.  God is with you every step of the way.

2 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.
 14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”[a] Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain. 17 But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. 18 So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.   (Philippians 2:12-18)

A blessing recorded for you from Paul from Colossians chapter one...
Thanksgiving and Prayer
 3 We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all God’s people— 5 the faith and love that spring from the hope stored up for you in heaven and about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel 6 that has come to you. In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world—just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God’s grace. 7 You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant,[c] who is a faithful minister of Christ on our[d] behalf, 8 and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.
 9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives,[e] 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you[f] to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
The Supremacy of the Son of God
 15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
 21 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of[g] your evil behavior. 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23 if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

Paul is an incredible writer isn't he?  But it is so humbling to know that God filled him with those wonderful words to help bring the Gospel to you and to me.  God rescued us, so that we could worship with Him eternally.  
You may have whatever comments you would like towards this post.  You can disagree with every words I say.  But the purpose of this post was to get the GOSPEL of CHRIST out.  I want my motives to be pleasing to God.  I don't want any praise to come towards me.  That's not what this is about.
The next time to clean your toilet, or wash that dish you use every day, or do laundry think this:
I want to please God in everything I do, not because of me but because of GOD!
I know it gets tiring, I haven't been doing it as long as you.....but I think we can help each other, encourage one another, and pray.  
My thoughts on pleasing God are not over, but I should end this post.  
If you have anything on your mind, let God know.
If you need to reconcile with someone, let them know as soon as possible.
Which reminds me, I need to do that right now!


  1. reading this post has touched my very soul ,because like you . i just want my motives to be pure and pleasing to him.these scriptures you used are so amazing.what translation and verses did you use? thank god for you. flo

  2. The verses I used are written within the blog post if you can find them....usually before or after the verses are copied down. The translation I use is usually NIV or ESV. Thanks for reading and your encouraging words!