We’re planning a fun day trip with Joy today in Poppy’s truck. Every mile of our adventure will be powered by the combustion engine under the hood. That engine has two jobs: to take in fuel and to put out power. My husband will provide the fuel by filling up the gas tank and the engine will produce the power which will push the truck down the road.
Paul knew nothing about a combustion engine, but he understood the principle. He wrote, “Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose” (Php 2:12-13). Do you see the principle? What God works in – you work out. God is at work in you through His Word and His Spirit – providing power, wisdom, strength, and righteousness. Your job is to take what He provides and work it out in your life.
He gives you His power to overcome the devil. You work out that power by “standing your ground” (Eph 6:13) against the enemy until he runs from you (Ja 4:7). He gives you His wisdom to make godly decisions. You believe His wise counsel and act according to His will (Rom 12:2). He gives you His strength to endure the trials so that you can persevere with Joy (Ja 1:2), knowing that God is working all things for the good (Rom 8:28). He gives you His righteousness so you can live a holy life. He gives you a way out of temptation, and you take it. He gives you His love so that you can love others – even those who are hard to love. He gives you His Spirit, and you work it out by living by the Spirit (Gal 6:16), being led by the Spirit (v. 18), and keeping in step with the Spirit (v. 25). He gives you His Word to teach, rebuke, correct, and train you in righteousness – you work it out by study and obedience.
You would think we were crazy if we jumped in the truck and expected to make our trip without any fuel to power the engine. How crazy is it to try to live godly lives without the truth of the Word and the power of God’s Spirit? Beloved, God is providing the fuel for holy living (2 Pet 1:3) – all you have to do is work out what He is pouring in. Get your motor running – it’s time to hit the road!