What does it mean to walk with God?

God created us for fellowship with Him and He desires us to walk with Him (Micah 6:8). Before the fall, Adam and Eve would walk and talk with God in the garden of Eden, but after they had sinned, they were ashamed and hid when they heard Him coming (Genesis 3:8). Their sin separated humanity from God (Romans 5:12). But Jesus came to offer us forgiveness and restoration. The sacrifice of Jesus enables us to have a personal and close relationship with God through the Holy Spirit (John 14:16–17). When you put your faith in Jesus, your relationship with God becomes the most important thing in your life. You want to talk with Him, seek Him, and please Him in all your ways. This is walking with God.

Enoch (Genesis 5:24) and Noah (Genesis 6:9) were called men who walked with God. When you walk with God, you factor Him into your everyday life and your decision making. You spend time praying and talking with Him throughout the day.

If you go on a walk with your friend, what do you do during your walk? Besides the obvious, walking, you are having a conversation, sharing things that are on your mind, and listening to your friend do the same as you head to your destination. You stay focused on what each other is saying and do not get distracted. As a believer in Christ, you can walk with Him throughout your entire life here on earth until you arrive in heaven. God loves to be in relationship with us, and we can converse with Him through prayer and reading His Word, hearing His love and gaining His wisdom for us as we live our lives here on the earth (Psalm 32:8; 1 John 3:1).

Walking with God means you are in agreement with Him and His ways (Amos 3:3). No one is perfect, but when you are walking with God your desire should be to see your own selfish desires die for the sake of seeing God transform you more and more into the image of His Son: "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come" (2 Corinthians 5:17; see also 2 Corinthians 3:18).

Another name for walking with God that is commonly used in the New Testament is "walking in the Spirit" (Galatians 5:16; Romans 8:4). When Jesus ascended into heaven, He left the Holy Spirit with us. The Holy Spirit, being on the earth and in us when we believe in Christ, is our direct link to God (Romans 8:9–11, 26–27; Ephesians 1:13–14).

Walking with God is a way of life, and it is a choice. We can walk in God's ways or the ways of the world, but we cannot do both (2 Kings 8:27; Ephesians 2:2; Matthew 6:24; James 4:4). There will be sacrifices made no matter which path you choose, but walking with God is the way of eternal life (Hebrews 12:1–2). It will not be without cost, but it will be worth it (Matthew 7:13–14). Walking with the Lord means you live to please Him and not yourself. We cut things out of our lives that keep us from walking in the ways of God, because we are motivated by His love and a desire to be close to Him (Romans 13:14; Psalm 1:1–3). We also depend on the power and work of the Holy Spirit to enable us to walk with Him (2 Corinthians 3:18; Philippians 2:12–13).

People who walk with God display the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22–23). Christ followers live in contrast to the ways of the world surrounding them (Philippians 2:15). When Peter and John were arrested and brought before the authorities for preaching the gospel, the authorities took note of the men's boldness "… and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus" (Acts 4:13). When you consistently walk with God, others will be able to recognize that, though you are flawed and imperfect, you have been with Jesus.


Related Truth:

How can I walk in the Spirit?

Why is living for God so difficult?

What is it to abide in Christ? What does it mean to abide in Christ?

How should our identity in Christ affect the way we live?

Why should I spend time alone with God?


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