Good, Acceptable and Perfect Will

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Someone once told me to trust in God is good. To believe in Him and have faith that He will sort you out is good. Then I asked, what if after believing I also make plans for just in case. He said, that is applying wisdom which is acceptable. But resting on completely on God by the renewing of your mind is an example of a perfect will of God. Then I began to ponder. I always thought a good acceptable and perfect will of God is one narrative.

Looking at Romans 12:2, I must have read it time and again but I never paid extra attention to the last part of the verse. “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

Good, acceptable, and perfect. I was actually beginning to think that there are three different things God wills: good things, acceptable things, and perfect things until I read the article of John Piper on this topic. God’s will for us are one and the same – good. In otherwise, it is impossible for God’s will to be good (and not acceptable unto Him), and other things are acceptable and not good. “Good” is one way of describing the will of God, and “acceptable” is another way of describing it. They are not separate or any less discerning than the other.

Here’s where it either gets interesting or confusing, depending on how you understand it. The perfect will of God from my understanding is that everything that happens on the face of the earth, be it good or evil is the will of God because He allows it. Nothing can happen except God permits it. See Lamentations 3:37. However, there is also a command of/from God to people who will believe in Him to do this or that or abstain from this or that. Obeying such command is fulfilling the perfect will of God.

Hence, to be transformed by the renewing of your mind is to filled with His word and be able to apply it to our daily lives, regardless of what is easily obtainable. We should discern (from the bank of knowledge of His word in us) and do what is the will of God – what is good and acceptable and perfect. Strive to know and do the good. Strive to do that which is pleasing to God and by so fulfilling His perfect will.

Unsearchable are God’s ways. Mysterious are His ways. Only those who will seek Him will He give the understanding of the hidden treasures in His word.

I pray that God grants us the grace to do according to His perfect will for us. Amen!

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