Tuesday, October 31, 2017
👉VERSE: _”Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;”_(2Corinthians 4:9)
There is a sect of Christians who believe that, persecution is an awful thing of the past, already experienced by the Apostles and early saints who stood firm for Christ in order for our generation to be free enough to enjoy God’s blessings out of their hard work. Such Christians love to preserve the lust of the flesh even more than their souls but that shouldn’t be the case.
Persecution is the weapon which the devil uses to drag faithless and world based Christians from their focus on heaven onto hell. However, it is to check the status of a Christians love for God despite every form of bitterness as part of His package of salvation.
Due to resistance on the part of Christians who couldn’t endure suffering, many have deviated from the path of perseverance in Christ in order to walk after the devil into eternal disaster. We are surely called to live according to the inspired Word of God and not to think of enjoying the foretaste of the glory which is yet to be revealed to us in heaven.
The world is at war with Christianity and the cunning instigations of the devil on the side of the world, against all the followers of Christ who seek to pass through it. We don’t have any thing to fight over with the children of this world, with the exception of the fact that we are only pilgrims who are walking through the world into the Kingdom of God, where we shall live happily forever and ever.
This will involve cartridges fired against us to separate us from Christ Jesus but that mustn’t work against a perseverant Christian. The world is only waiting to be condemned into an irreparable destruction and for that matter, Satan is working hard to drive many souls into his hellish and devastating “hub” which has many careless souls trooping into it. Endurance in faith is what Christ Jesus demands from us.
For there wouldn’t have been the need for perseverance if there was no hard times associated with our christian belief system. Sail through the storms of life into the place full of joy, without considering the persecution- free option which leads to a dangerous destination for those who regret ever being there.
Abba Father who art in Heaven, please grant us the necessary endurance until we finally enter into Heaven in Jesus name. Amen.
VERSE: “Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;” (2Corinthians 4:9)
From age to age, God has not changed. His criteria for assessing a faithful Christian remains the same and that is why persecution will never cease in the test of our love for God and His eternal glory in Heaven. The greatest gift of God for humankind, is the demonstration of His priceless love for us to enjoy the privilege of being created in His likeness, before He eventually perfected this love through Jesus Christ, even when He had to lay down His life for the remission of our sins.
In exchange for the salvation of God which we have received free of charge, God demands that all of us should walk in the holy path of Christ our Lord. As part of the redemptive mission accomplished by our Lord Jesus Christ for our freedom from sins, He was persecuted by the world. According to the Holy Bible, all the servants of God who pleased Him with obedience and perseverance in faith, including Noah, Abraham, Paul, Peter, Stephen and John the Baptist had to renounce the world and allow persecution to prove their commitment to God. Why is persecution still important for the determination of man’s response to the grace of God by which we are saved?
Persecution has a prime objective for the resistance of rebellion from the world after we have become followers of Christ. It serves as an indication of our love for God and our uncompromising decision to walk in His Way without falling for the evil world which hated our Master Jesus Christ. Christians who wish to enter the Kingdom of God will have to prove to Him that no matter the height of the hurdles we encounter, we need to come out victorious. The world has not stopped hating Christ and that’s why He wants to win through us. Be a partner in Christ’s persecution in these last days as His Spirit in us will make you have a taste of what He did to stay upright for an eternal honour. (Philippians 2:8-11).
Heavenly Father, kindly offer me the zeal to stand firm for you in the heat of any persecution in Jesus name.
VERSE: “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us”(2Corinthians 4:7)
Believers in Christ are presented with a condition for an acceptable service. Stewardship consists of our total rendering of Christian services towards the duty assigned to us by God. In business entities, there are caretakers or managers who ensure that everything is smoothly administered and accounted for.
Knowledge in God’s Word has thought us that all we have came from God and for that matter, we are only stewards and not owners of whatever that we lay our hands on.
With such an understanding made clear, it is good for us to live as stewards and not owners. Nothing in this world must influence us to boast of our riches, positions and several experiences as if we are the originators and engineers of all that can be attributed to our successes.
On account of that, pride is not to be tolerated by anybody who is living on the face of the earth. We are not to announce the success that God uses us to achieve on behalf of others. That will not elicit or arouse the Spirit of submissiveness in us as God’s stewards, who can only be useful in the service of our Lord Jesus Christ. Moving on to talk about our physical features and the body as a whole, we need to know that nothing about us can be changed or used to drive people into believing that we are nicer or superior to them.
Let not carnal discretion lead us into failure as we have been called into God’s stewardship. That will be ungodly and rebellious (1Corinthians 6:5, (1Corinthians 6:19-20). We are nothing without our Master. Even in time of delivery, a woman has to be naked before she is delivered of her baby; because humankind has nothing to call his own when God makes an intervention. Indeed, our lives are not ours (Job 33:4-6, Colossians 3:23, 1Peter 4:10-11). May God help us all.
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, give us the heart of a faithful steward in our various ministries.
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“I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world“.
Manna is the word of God and the word of God is our Lord Jesus Christ, the bread of life. He is the life giving bread. Our souls do not live on it own but borrow life from Christ. There are few who deign to stretch out their hands to put this bread to their mouth; and even when the Lord puts it into their mouth, few relish it, but some are filled with wind and others are dying of hunger through their own folly, while the food(Christ) is close beside them.
It is of no avail to unbelievers that Christ is the bread of life, because they remain always empty; but then does christ become our bread, when we come to Him as hungry person, that he may fill us.
To eat Christ is faith and there is no other way in which we eat Christ than by believing in Him, to have life in common with Him and to become one with Him.
Whosover shall cling himself to Christ, to have life from Him, will want nothing, but will have abundance all that contributes to sustain life.
If any eat of Christ, he shall have a spiritual life; a life of sanctification, which begun here, and will be perfected hereafter; and a life of glory which will never end.
“Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread”. (John 6:34)
Oh for grace to eat thee daily gracious Lord!
Glory be unto your name, Lord Jesus. Please help me to always believe in you and become one with you in your name I pray.
VERSE: “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30)
An empty cup is tiltered below a tap or a container before it can be filled with water. What happens when one capsizes the cup for water? It doesn’t even make sense. That is the bases for differentiating between humble and prideful Christians. According to the Holy Bible, believers in Christ are to be humbly empty for God’s infilling. “…my cup runneth over” (Psalm 23:5)
In the cause of our prayers, God demands more of our thanksgiving and worship as a symbol of subordination and high dependency. Extravagant exaltation of the Lord, is rewarding than the stingy prayer of petition offered by so many Christians in hard times like this. God knows our needs already but when His adoration goes up and up without always praying about our needs, He’s touched to deliver His promises for us. The reason is that, a prayer of adoration is an endorsement of man’s admission of the omnipotent dominion of Yahweh through Jesus Christ. Although it is good to make our requests known to God in prayer, one who humbles himself before God, is freed from the doubts of his counterpart who always prays for his petitions as if God is only good for the provision of our physical needs. He needs our hours of worship more than what we ask from Him (1Chronicles 16:29, Hebrews 13:15, Revelation 19:1,5).
See daily worship and praises as the privilege to decrease in the increasing presence of God, and not a burden at all. It abases you to qualify for God’s profuse blessings, keeps you ever dependent on Him with your head fixed perpetually on the source that never runs out of unconditional love. Humility shall surely be the key virtue that represents the status of God’s children who are saved by the grace of Christ. We are all called into the decreasing realm as children of God, in order to receive from Him our elevation to the of Heaven, where we belong forever.
Lord Jesus Christ, I humbly ask for your grace to decrease in your increasing presence all the days of my life.
“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of he sea, and over the fowl of he air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” (Genesis 1:28KJV)
One very important question that all Christians need to ask themselves is, “Why have I been called by God”? If we fail to ask ourselves this very important question, then we are worshipping our Maker in vain. Like a businessman who doesn’t have any vision statement or target to achieve, many are those who call themselves Christians without knowing the purpose of their call.
Remember, God lifts off our burdens and grants our requests for one reason. The reason is to receive and perform the role of a responsible workman in the righteous vineyard of God. That is why we have been given the dominion to subdue any thing which can hinder our quest to achieve the purpose of our call as Christians.
A lot of Churches across the world, can partly be held reprehensible for the outbreak of sin and atrocities across the world. The reason is that, in the absence of Bible based teachings that will bring the mission of a Christian into the limelight, carnal based teachings are trying to miss and frustrate the goal of our divine stewardship. In such Churches are Christians tired for nothing, and with little recognition for what God defines about their call. In several Churches people are only content with the provisions of God and their selfish interests and least is the consideration made for the purpose of their call. May the Lord help us. God has gotten unquantifiable blessings in stock for us than what we can ask of Him but all this unmerited favor is meant for us to accomplish God’s divine mission, which is to please Him. All are enjoined to persevere under all circumstances and bear our crosses (Philippians 2:12). Have faith, live according to the righteousness of God and this is when we will fulfill the purpose of our call. (Genesis 22:8).
(A sunday sermon, by Ps.Dumfeh Richie of T.H.M)
Oh Lord Jesus, help me to live according to your mission concerning my calling.