Friday, 31 August 2007

The Lord is mightier than them all.

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“The mighty oceans have roared, O Lord, The mighty oceans roar like thunder, The mighty oceans roar as they pound the shore. But mightier than the violent raging of the seas, mightier than the breakers of the shore. The Lord above is mightier than these” Psalm 93: 3-4

In most of our mission fields and what we know African Traditional Religion (ATR) to be, people seem to ascribe spirituality and reverence to things that they cannot understand. Trees like the Iroko are worshipped as a wonder of the gods. In fact, issues of life are divided between the gods and humans. The roaring of the mighty oceans is one of the things that the ‘gods’ do, hence the worship of the gods/goddesses of the seas. This is because they cannot comprehensively understand the issue of the oceans.

However, a lot of these things are superstitious while demons have taken advantage of people’s ignorance to exploit them and receive worship from them.

The Lord above is mightier than them all.

God is eternal. He has no beginning and no end. He has always existed and dwells from eternity past. He created the universe and the host we know and the ones we don’t know, even the seas. The Lord above is mightier than them all.

He deserves our worship and reverence। In the arena called “time” where human beings live, we go through all kinds of troubles। The idea here is that even if your troubles are like the ‘violent raging of the seas’, the Lord above is mightier than them all and is able to bring you deliverance।
This morning i heard my wife singing the old Scripture Union Spiritual:
"No man can walk upon the sea"
"No man can walk upon the sea"
"No man can walk upon the sea"
"Only Jesus can walk upon the sea"
It's well with you.



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Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Joseph: His God-given Dreams

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This is part of a series of studies we are doing on the life of Joseph. Joseph indeed is a challenge both to the young and the old today. He is a model to servants and those who are going through difficult times in their lives. We hope that it is going to be a blessing to you. Remember you are free to comment and/or write us.


Gen 37:19-20

“And they said one to another, Behold, this dreamer cometh. Come now therefore, and let us slay him, and cast him into some pit, and we will say, Some evil beast hath devoured him: and we shall see what will become of his dreams.”
(KJV)

If you can, try and read the whole of that chapter in Genesis here. The brothers of Joseph hated him because of envy. Firstly, their father loved and favoured him. Secondly, he had dreams about his life which suggested that he would be greater than all of them sometime in the future. In fact, their hatred increased because of his dreams. Look at the list:

“…they hated him…” (Gen.37: 4)

“…they hated him all the more…” (vs 5)

“…and they hated him all the more because of his dream…” (vs 8)

“His brothers were jealous of him…” (vs 11)

The result of all these dreams was that in the course of doing his job and obeying his father, the brothers took him and would have killed him, but for the intervention of Reuben. They decided to sell him. Joseph was sold from one hand to another until he landed in the house of Potiphar in Egypt.

If you examine carefully, it seems to me as if Joseph was sold naked or semi naked. This is because, Vs 31-33 says that they took his robe and dipped it in blood and took to their father so as to deceive him that a wild animal killed him. Joseph was mourned by his father and forgotten. Let’s take of these:

Joseph lost the affection of his father, he lost the affection of his moderate brothers, he lost the company of all the people he was familiar with, he lost his freedom forever because he was sold as a slave. In Egypt, because of his fear of God, he ended up in prison and was disappointed and abandoned by pharaoh’s chief cupbearer. He had traumatic experiences. However, in spite of all these, there is one thing that Joseph did not lose – his relationship with God. A lot of people lose their relationship with God in the face of adversities.

You may have lost ‘all’ in your adversities – relationships, material things, loved one, tragedies and you are like forgotten and abandoned in life by those who used to celebrate you. You may actually have forgotten all the dreams God gave you about your life and all you care about now is just how to have a relief. Please, do not lose your relationship with God. That is what is going to bring to pass your God-given dreams.

The way Joseph took was the only way God had designed for his dreams to come to pass. He suffered but he was faithful in his relationship with God and in his service. At last, his God-given dreams came true.

Your God-given dreams will eventually come true! Only continue in your love relationship with God and in your faithfulness.


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Friday, 17 August 2007

SINGING & MAKING MELODY ON THE LORD

Sphere: Related Content And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever (Revelation 5:13).

According to this verse in Revelation, every creature – which includes you and me – will be singing to the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. “But I can’t sing,” we say. However, one day we not only can sing, but will sing.

Now that you know that in the future you will be singing, there is no reason to wait until then. You can sing now. You can sing today! All of us might not be able to make melodies and sing like King David, but we can all make joyful noise onto the Lord. So what are you waiting for….go ahead and bring the sacrifice of praise onto our Lord.

Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord (Ephesians 5:19).

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord (Colossians 3:16)
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Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Joseph: A child of God can say no to sin

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This is part of a series of studies we are doing on the life of Joseph. Joseph indeed is a challenge both to the young and the old today. He is a model to servants and those who are going through difficult times in their lives. We hope that it is going to be a blessing to you. Remember you are free to comment and write us.

Gen 39:6-9

“…Now Joseph was well-built and handsome, and after a while his master's wife took notice of Joseph and said, "Come to bed with me!" But he refused…How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?"

(NIV)

Joseph was a very successful servant and was well favoured by his master, Potiphar. Also, he “was a very handsome and well-built young man” Vs 6. Soon his master’s wife began to desire him. She was bold and invited Joseph to bed with her, but Joseph said no.

Now imagine the favours he would probably have enjoyed from the madam of the house assuming he conceded to her request, though we know, just like any gain or pleasure of sin, it would have been short-lived. Off course saying no to the woman was a risk in itself and eventually landed him into trouble. However, if you love God and you are a responsible son, you should be able to say no to sin even when it seems ‘risky’. Better land into ‘trouble’ with man and be at peace with God rather than the other way round.

Most people are able to say no once but succumbs when under pressure. Potiphar’s wife “kept putting pressure on him day after day, but he refused to sleep with her, and kept out of her way as much as possible” Vs 10(NLT). Joseph devised ways of avoiding the woman. Why was he taking all the pains? He was determined in his refusal to sin against God.

Often times, opportunity comes for us to prove our decisions. I don’t call it opportunity to sin but opportunity to test our decisions. Joseph was alone in the house doing his house cores. The desperate woman grabbed him on his cloth begging him to sleep with her. Joseph left his clothes with her and ran. God has not asked us to stand and resist temptation. He asked us to resist the devil but urged us to “flee from every appearance of evil” (1 Thess.5: 22).

Temptation can come in several ways: in the course of discharging your duties in your workplace like Joseph, in your school, in house among neighbours, or even in the course of rendering service to God, like helping others etc.

But one thing is clear, “No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God's seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God. (I Jn 3:9 NIV). If you are born of God, you have the capability to say no to sin and live a victorious Christian life.


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Monday, 13 August 2007

Don’t Be Like A Horse Or A Mule

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Today, there are a lot of people who are like horses and mules, wandering in and out of God’s will. Strong and zealous but cannot carry eternal secrets. Gullible Children who have refused to grow and cannot take responsibilities as sons. Read this piece and be blessed. Remember, we entertain questions as God helps us.




Ps 32:8-9

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you.”

(NIV)

The horse or mule has to be guided by bits and bridle in order to keep it under control. You beat it and charge it before it can respond to what you want it to do. There is no reasonable relationship between the rider and the horse. That is not the way God wants us to relate to Him.

God wants us to walk with Him in love and intimate relationship. He wants us to respond to Him in obedience willingly without Him applying force or coercion on us. He wants us to be responsible sons committed to Him as our Father and Lord. He wants us to learn to walk with Him and understand His ways – men and women He can trust and entrust responsibilities into their hands. He can say of them like He said of Abraham “I know him…” We come to some level of trust with Him where He can ‘confide’ in us and share His heart with us and use us.

You may be undergoing a ‘bit and bridle’ experience right now under God’s discipline. This is because God loves you and wants to keep you in His way. It is because He still has a plan for your life. He doesn’t want you to go far away before He starts looking for you. However, God wants you to grow and be trained in His ways so that you willingly follow and serve Him in His kingdom advance without ‘bits and bridle’. Children can be distracted by anything and cannot take responsibilities. Sons can.

God does not want men and women that will be like a ‘senseless horse and mule’ (NLT) who will stop following Him but divert into some ‘bypasses’ because of the lusts and the pride of this life. He looks behind only to discover that something else has distracted them and turned them away from following. God will ask, “where is my son/daughter?” He will be told that he has gone to “play”. What God will do is that He will look for him, bring him back and try to put ‘bits and bridle’ on him so as to keep him within focus until such a time when the child has grown and He can entrust him with eternal secrets. God wants partners.


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