“Radical obedience to Christ is not easy... It's not comfort, not health, not wealth, and not prosperity in this world. Radical obedience to Christ risks losing all these things. But in the end, such risk finds its reward in Christ. And he is more than enough for us.” -David Platt
Being obedient can be extremely difficult when you do not know what the outcome will be of your obedience. Radical obedience is putting full trust and faith into God when you don't know the end result of Gods plan. Let's be honest we are almost never are privy to Gods plan, however we are reassured that Gods plans for us do not involve harming us and are not void of hope (see Jeremiah 29:11). Radical Obedience does not mean we are exempt from fear or absent of worry. We are reminded that God works for the good of those who love him (see Romans 8:28).
The terms "radical" and "obedience" have both been given a bad rap, yet they are major cornerstones for a believer. If followed, they lead us to new heights in our lives and in the lives of those around us.
Radical: (Especially of change or action) relating to or affecting the fundamental nature of something; far-reaching or thorough.
Obedience: Compliance with an order, request, or law or submission to another's authority.
When I think about radical obedience I am reminded of Esther. Her unfailing obedience is the blueprint for what radical obedience is.
Esther was made queen while concealing the fact that she was a Jew. God gave her favor with the king to become queen (regardless of her prior stature). She was put in that position to stop the destruction of the Jews and according to Esther 4:8 she was instructed to, "go into the king’s presence to beg for mercy and plead with him for her people." Though the complete plan was undisclosed to her on how it would all come about, in Esther verse 4:14 she is told;
"For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?"
Here is where is gets risky. She cannot just go to the king like someone on the street. According to scripture;
"Hathak went back and reported to Esther what Mordecai had said. Then she instructed him to say to Mordecai, “All the king’s officials and the people of the royal provinces know that for any man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned the king has but one law: that they be put to death unless the king extends the gold scepter to them and spares their lives. But thirty days have passed since I was called to go to the king.” (Esther 4:9-11)
She would most likely be put to death by the king, regardless of being the queen. This for anyone else would be mission impossible and she knew that. She knows that there is a huge risk and cost of this radical obedience, but is reminded that God has planned her for this moment all of her life.
"When Esther’s words were reported to Mordecai, he sent back this answer: “Do not think that because you are in the king’s house you alone of all the Jews will escape. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?" (Esther 4:14)
Then one of the greatest lines in history comes from Esther's mouth that should empower us all in ever challenge we face and all we are asked to do by God;
"When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.” (Esther 4:16)
The most amazing thing happened when she acted out her radical obedience;
"On the third day Esther put on her royal robes and stood in the inner court of the palace, in front of the king’s hall. The king was sitting on his royal throne in the hall, facing the entrance. When he saw Queen Esther standing in the court, he was pleased with her and held out to her the gold scepter that was in his hand. So Esther approached and touched the tip of the scepter.
Then the king asked, “What is it, Queen Esther? What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be given you.” (Esther 5:1-4)
She was spared her life and was told by the king that He would give her anything she asked. Radical obedience equaled radical favor.
As with anything, there is a cost and a reward.
The Cost of Radical Obedience:
*You will be seen as radical and may not "fit in"*You may be judged
*Loss of comfort
*You will feel fear and anxiety
The Rewards of Radical Obedience:
*God moving in huge ways in your life*Trusting and falling more in love with God
The next time God is prompting you towards radical obedience ask yourself,
"Have I come to this position for such a time as this?"