You Think It’s a Curse Word, But It’s Not

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You’ve heard it before. But it makes you cringe. Your not sure why, but every time it comes up in conversation you begin to feel oppressed as if you rights and freedom are being violated. Do you know what I’m talking about yet? It’s the word “submit.”

No, I’m not talking about submitting a resume for a job posting. I’m not talking about submitting an article for publishing. Nor am I talking about hitting the submit button on an online form.

I’m talking about the following definition of the word:

“To accept or yield to a superior force or to the authority or will of another person.”

I know, you already hate it don’t you? But the question is why? And the answer lies in the truth that many of us have grown up in a society where we are told everyday that we are free. We are free to be who we want to be, and we are free to make our own choices. In essence have been taught to be, and want to be autonomous.

We want the right to be self-governing individuals.

But is that what is best for us? Are we as individuals able to make the very best decisions for ourselves on a daily basis? Should we really be given the authority to self-govern our life? The writer of Psalm 95 didn’t think so which is why he wrote in verses 6-7:

“[6] Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!
[7] For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture,
and the sheep of his hand.”

Do you see it? He keeps using that word. Worship, bow down, and kneel are all associated with that dreaded curse word “submit.” The psalmist is calling us to come to the Lord our God and submit to him. To see him as the superior force and authority in our lives and to give our will and our lives over to him to do and live as he sees fit.

Now before your head explodes the question we need to ask is why. Why would the psalmist say this? And ultimately, why would the psalmist think this is the best thing for us? These verses give us a few good reasons for this.

One, he is our maker. The triune God of the Bible is the one who has made everything we see including us. He has not made us on accident, but he has made us for a purpose. And if we are made for a purpose then he is the one to best tell us what that purpose is and how we should live it out.

Two, he is our God and we are his people. In the Old Testament the people of God were the physical nation of Israel. But now, because God’s Son, Jesus Christ, came to earth, lived a perfect life, and died on the cross, we who believe in him, now are also considered the people of God. This means that God, through Christ, initiated a great rescue plan to deal with our sin so that we could have a new and forever life with him. He did this at a great cost to himself which means that he is a gracious, loving, and self-sacrificing God. This is a supreme being and authority that we should want to follow.

Three, God calls us his sheep. Shepherds are tasked with the great task of doing what is best for their sheep. They stay up all night to watch over them and protect them, and they make sure that the sheep never get lost. In the same way our God is a protecting God. He works to protect his people from harm and he is always working for our good and our best.

We have a God who made us for a specific purpose. A God who graciously and lovingly made a great sacrifice to save us from our sin so we could be his people. And we have a God who protects us and is always working for what is best in the lives of his people. This is a God who deserves our worship and he is a God to whom we should submit.

And when you realize how amazing he is, it only seems natural that you would let him have authority over you. The word “submit” no longer seems like a curse word, but a loving word given to us by a loving God who wants to rule our lives because he knows what is best and wants our best. So lets be people who love God and submit to him realizing that he has saved us at a high cost to himself and is working for our very best each and every day.


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