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Abiding In God – Lesson 11: Discovering God’s Will

Scripture Reading: John 6:28-40

Memory Verse: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 12:2


God will reveal His will for the direction and decision making for our lives. At the outset to the often heard or thought question, “What is God’s will?” we must recognize that this is no easy matter to consider. Often the issue is a small one; while at other times a decision can be a life—or—death matter. Hopefully, the previous ten lessons will help us as we proceed into this question.

The Bible has many examples of those who knew God’s will. They were not guessing, hoping, or taking a shot in the dark. In most instances God does expect us to know His mind in a decision; however, we must be careful not to confuse our own personal desires with His express will. There is a variety of ways to discern God’s will in a matter, and sometimes only one of these is necessary while at other times a combination may be necessary.

“We find that often the Lord doesn’t use all the points. Sometimes he gives us one or two big 1000-watt lights. At other times he gives many small 50-watt ones that make us equally sure of his leading. If we come to yellow or red lights, we evaluate further, and generally wait for clarification.” (1:p. 101)

“But what about those times when much is at stake and we can discover no clear scriptural instruction and yet are forced to choose between two possible courses?” (8:p. 4)

The will of the Father is twofold: 1) that all who comes to the Son will be received and not lost, and 2) that all who see and believe on the Son will have everlasting life. Our desire to serve God will be in vain without a proper understanding of the One we want to serve. When we ask for, seek, and receive wisdom, we will find we will have the practical working knowledge which cannot be separated from the spiritual understanding that comes through the discernment given by the Holy Spirit.

To proceed by faith is not easy, but at times it is the only way. Even in these times, we can be at rest and say as Christ did, “Thy will be done.”

Study Questions:

  1. Did God have a known will for Jesus Christ to perform? John 6:35-40.
    Note: Manna satisfied physical needs for a while; Christ satisfies Spiritual needs forever.
  2. Did God have a known will for Paul to perform? Acts 22:12-16.
  3. Does God expect us to know His will? Ephesians 5:15-17; Romans 12:2.
  4. Why do we sometimes get confused in discerning God’s will? Mark 14:34-36.
  5. How strong can our will be at times? 1 Peter 4:1-4; Ephesians 4:17-19.
  6. What advantage is there in knowing the will of God? John 15:7-8. Is this promise conditional? 1 John 5:14-15; James 4:3. Note: God will not act in ways that are contrary to His will.
  7. What is one tool we can use to discern God’s will? 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8; Psalm 119:130.
    Note: God’s commandments help a person identify his or her way in the world that is filled with confusion, sin, and error.
  8. Are there other avenues that God uses to reveal His will? Note: Even wise, capable decision makers need counselors.
    a) Philippians 4:6-7
    b) Acts 20:24
    c) Romans 8:13-14 Acts 20:24
    d) Proverbs 15:21-22; Proverbs 13:10
    e) Revelation 3:7-8
    f) 2 Corinthians 5:7
  9. What can we be assured of that God wants for all His children? Colossians 1:9; Colossians 4:12.