From our monthly News Letter Sep-Oct 2018.
This is a critical question that demands an in-depth and meticulous thought.
For every endeavor one embarks upon, there is always preparation.
The parable of the ten virgins in Matthew’s gospel chapter 25:1-13 will help us.
Also read“YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE”?
Ten vurgins prepared to meet the bride groom. Five of them were wise -sincere Christians while the other five were foolish -hypocrites.
The foolish ones did not take extra oil, posses grace – meaning inadequate preparation and hence were disqualified. Do you have extra oil for your lamp? Is your light on or off? Please, check.
In Matthew 22:1-14, Jesus illustrated the kingdom if heaven with parable of wedding feast. Many are called to the wedding feast, that is to salvation but few have the wedding garment, the righteousness of Christ, the sanctification of the Spirit. We are all called to prepare for the scrutiny and those who put on the Lord Jesus, who have a Christian temper of
mind; who lives by faith in Christ and to whom He is all and all, have the wedding garment.
How prepared are you to meet your God? Are you putting on a wedding garment? You need to be very sure and absolutely convinced because that is the only ticket or criteria for your entry.
For one to meet God, one must conform to His standard, fulfil His conditions and principles. For instance:
Holiness: God is holy and can never compromise His standard. In Exodus 19:10-15 God gives Israelites two days to prepare themselves, wash their clothes before coming to meet Him at Mount Sinai.
The journey of the Israelites with God that supposed to last for 40 days was extended to 40 years because of their unfaithfulness and ungodliness. God is holy and want His people to be holy too.
Jesus died on the cross to destroy the nature of sin, that which separates man from God. By His resurrection He restored man the nature of God.
Holiness is our nature as believers and followers of Jesus Christ. it flows from within us. It is part of us because we posses the gene/seed of God through Jesus. Whoever that is prepared to meet God must be clothed with garment of holiness (Hebrews). Check yourself! Which garment are you putting on as you walk towards meeting your God? IS it garment of sin – sexual immorality, lying, unforgiveness, idolatry, worldliness, greediness? You must put them off for God can never behold iniquity. 2 Timothy 2:19 tells us about the standard of God – whoever that call the name of God must depart from iniquity. You must die to sin, get rid of your sinful nature and put on the new nature, the nature of holiness (Ephesians 4:23-24).
Your preparation should not be based on your own standard. A life that is prepared to meet God must be absolutely sure, very convinced, not quessing or based on assumption but confirmed that he/she. has the new nature..
Jesus in John 3:3 emphasized it when He was addressing Nicodemus. Unless a man is born again he cannot enter the kingdom of God. Unless a man possess the Spirit of God, absolutely and consciously yields and control or led by the Spirit of God, he/she cannot meet God.
A life that possess the Spirit of God should display in action, in words, in thoughts and even in appearance, Infact in all things the most prominent attribute and evidence of the Holy Spirit which is holiness. You need to check your life once again brother/sister- How prepared are you to meet your God?
A LIFE THAT IS PREPARED TO MEET GOD
Romans 12:1-2 says, “Offer your body as living sacrifice. A life or one that is prepared to meet God must continuously and delibrately. laydown his/her life as a living sacrifice on the altar of God. God does not accept any-how sacrifice. It cannot be of a dead animal. It must be living and healthy before it can be accepted. Leviticus 1:1-4
In our days, the sacrifice God looks for is not of bull, ram, and birds but the sacrifice of a life that has been redeemed from sin and the flesh; a life that is totally laid ob the altar of sacrifice.
Beloved, pause and check again. What kind of life are you placing on your altar of sacrifice? Is it a double standard life -hypocrisy/compromise? Is it a decay and disintegrated life of fornication, adultery, lesbianism, gay, homosexual, masturbation, abortion, cultism, stealing, cheating etc.; No! It can’t be, for sacrifice such as this is not a reasonable and acceptable sacrifice. Your life is already on fire on the altar of sacrifice. Always remain burnt. A burnt sacrifice does not turn back to its original form. For instance – Ice block melts to water, vis-versa but burnt paper turns to ashes and cannot return to its original form. So remain burnt so that your aroma will always be pleasant and acceptable by God.
A life that is prepared to meet God must settle the case of unforgiveness.
Forgiveness is the ability to remember the wrongs done by others without feeling the pain.
Love and understanding play role in forgiveness. We must cry to God for a heart filled with love so as to always put on love as a basic clothe. With an understanding of what Jesus did for us on the cross, nothing should be too big to let go. We should learn to give excuses for offences committed; carry the bowels of mercy; forgive in advance; look beyond the person and see in her/him Mr. Flesh at work.
Jesus our role model. understood this. He differed all odds, went to the cross just to crush Mr. Flesh (Chief producer of unforgiveness). He put him to death on the cross so that we shall be free and our eyes open to follow and act/be like Him. God through Jesus forgives us even while we yet sinners. Jesus prayed for His killers. Stephen also prayed the same to demonstrate to us the possibility of frgiveness.
Note: God has forgiven us of our sins, but each time we sin by refusing to forgive others, those sins are recalled. Matthew 18-23-25. It is life for life and forgiveness for forgiveness Romans 12:17-19.
A life that is prepared to meet God must fulfil the condition Jesus gives in Luke 9:23-26
· Deny yourself
· Carry your cross daily
· Follow Him
· Loose yourself for Him
· Suffer shame for Him
· Cleave steadfastly in Him
· Loose the world
Unless one meet up these conditons, he/she will not be qualified to meet his/her God. Self denial means to forget self, disown yourself, loose sight of yourself and interest, refuse or give up yourself, renounce or leave yourself behind.
Carrying our cross daily entails yielding for the burden of Jesus deliberately, voluntarily and consciously. The burden of Jesus is seeking for lost souls and touching lives. It involves enduring shame, suffering and pain momentarily. They come in different forms, at different levels and time. So we must not choose altarnatives, cut corners. dodge them or jump out of them but patiently accept and endure tnem so that your mind will be renewed and you will be able to achieve your supreme objective of becoming like your master Jesus and meeting your God..
A life that is prepared to meet God must look up and not down as written Colossians 3:1-4 Seek the things that are above, were Christ is, where God you desire to meet is. Set your mind on things that are above not on things that are on earth. Earth is full of distractions, worldliness and evils. You are a child of the kingdom -focus on things above, desire, pursue and occupy your mind with with business of the kingdom. Do not be of the world. The world and itd pleasures are perishing. If you want to enjoy the world and also enjoy heaven, you will end up loosing all and suffer the lost of your soul Luke 9:23. Distinguish yourself from the world in all things. Check your type of business/job, dressing, friendship, association (club) and wherever you spend your leisure time, God is interested in all. In your journey to meet your God, you must be confronted wirh so many conflicts and battles.
You will battle with satan -the tempter and his agents, you will battle with Mr. Flesh who yields and co-operate with the devil to produce sin in you, and battle with the world system. Remember the only sort of spiritual conflict that’s ever successfully won is the one God fights for you. He does not expect you to win the battle, only to surrender to Him and let Him win it for you. So you are not supposed to fight, yours is to fight the good fight of faith 1Timothy 6:12. Yours isn’t a battle of exhusting effort, it’s the battle of believing God for victory.
Trust your God – Jehovah Nissi to prevail for you because the battle is not yours but God’s Exodus 14:14..
Jesus says, “The world will make you suffer but be of good cheer because I have overcome the world John 16:33.
Note also that holiness and righteousness are wonderful shield, defensive coverage and powerful weapons of warfare. Bro Paul says, “Put on the full armour of God, so…. you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” Eph. 6:11. You are to wear God’s armour not -yours. You are to stand -not fight. “The weapons of our warfare are not canal but God’s powerful weapon…. 2 Corinthians 10:4. So act wisely.
There is no one that was created empty. We are all embedded witg great potenials each one according to his ability. A life that is prepared to meet God must discover his own potentials, God’s divine purpose for his life and make effort to accomplish it. Matthew 25:14-30. Ephessians 2:10 says, “God has made us what we are, and in our union with Christ He has created us for a life of good deeds which He has already prepared for us to do”. You are to meet your God with your own score card of good works and receive reward accordingly.
Preparation if meeting God is a conscious, continuous process and should be done minute by minute, all through the day and our lifetime. You should have the understanding that God is in you, He dwells in you -your body is His temple and be conscious how you live your life. You should work on your mind to be ever ready to cmmune with Him in your mind all the time. When your mind is correct/ready in His presence, in your place of prayer, in your quiet time, at the table of His word and in His kingdom at the end. Make conscious effort to renew your mind because it is only a renewed mind that can commune with God..
DANGERS OF INADEQUATE PREPARATION
– Consequence of endless death in hell awaits anyone who did not prepare adequately, and one who neglect his own work.
– All your efforts so far and sacrifices wilk be in vain.
– You will live a miserable and defeated Christian life.
Jesus continued, “Be on your guard then because you do not know what day your Lord will come”. Daily appropriate preparation is very neccessary because a lot of people have gone unprepared -be warned!
Any new day we see is an opportunity given to us to work on ourselves towards drawing close to Him on daily basis. Use the opportunity given to you to repent sincerely
The axe is ready to cut down the trees at the root. Luke 3:9. May you never be cut down. May you never be wasted. God and His angels are ready. In love, He opens His arms to receive you – BE WISE!
Many Christians today take God’s mercy and goodness for granted. They continue to toy with sin loiter in the enemy’s territory, thinking that the absence of immediate consequences is a license to continue to indulge in sin. Romans 2:4-11. To what arear of your life is God pointing His flashlight right now? Notice what the Philistines did to Samson immediately he was captured. Judges 16:21. His eyes were plucked out with sharp object. Why do you think they did this? Be warned! 2 Corinthians 13:5 says, “Put yourselves to the test and find out whether you are living in faith”.
Lamentation 3:40 says, ” Let us examine ourselves and turn back to the Lord. The ball is in your court. May God in His mercy encounter our hearts and make us ever ready to meet Him in Jesus name. Amen.
By Sister Theresa Uzondu
A teacher of God’s word
A gang of robbers broke into a multi millionair’s house, and at gun point fiercely demanded, “Your money or your life.” Within a space of 3 secondes, the man quickly responded with great fear of losing his life and his family, “Please, my life! My life! My life!” He said with a vibrating but flinchy tone.
He went straight to his inner chamber and drew out a box filled up with thousands of naira, a few pounds and dollars and willingly and respectfully handed it over to the robbers who zoomed off with immediate effect. The man knelt down with his entire family and thanked God for their life.
WHY DID HE CHOOSE HIS LIFE OVER HIS MONEY?
It could be for the follwing reasons;
1) Life is most valuable than wealth
2) When life is lost, it can’t be earned back here on earth
3) With life, more money could earned and much wealth could be created
4) He realized that losing his life and probably his entire family means losing everything out of foolishness
5 He also may have come to realize that earthly wealth does not last and not worth dying for
Also read👉🏼JESUS LONGS TO MEET YOU
He was wise enough to make a wise and positive decision at that critical moment of his life. I have heard of a few cases of some other persons who found themselves in a similar situation, but made a foolish and terrible negative decision of holding to their valuables and eventually lost their lives. They gambled with their only one earthly life and lost it. Their foolish greed cost them their very promising lives. they lost it all.
King Solomon wrote: “Anyone who is among the living has hope -even a live dog is better off than a dead lion!” (Ecclesiastes 9:4 NIV)
In other words, a living outcast is far better off than a dead king. That places a high value on life than anything else among men. No one in a real sense naturally wants to die, even you and I..
WHAT CAN YOU LOSE YOUR LIFE TO GET?
Money? Brings pleasure and comfort but fizzles out
Fame? Gratifies the body, feels good but Fizzles out
Wealth? Gratifies the body, brings pleasure, comfort but dwindles away
Power? Makes proud, respected. revered but degenerates and transfers
Women? Pleasurable, but gets old and dies
Alchol? Sweet, pleasurable, intoxicates and kills
Drugs? Hypnotizes, fake boost, Intoxicates and kills
Christ? Gives life, saves life and gives every good thing + everlasting life.
Everybody is naturally careful of not losing their lives because life is sweet and beautiful. But you will be amazed to realize how fast we are losing our precious and promising lives to so many worthless things. Many have willingly lost their lives to this world, to money, fame, drugs, women, power, etc. And not for Christ..
Did you read that? “AND NOT FOR CHRIST!” WHY? We will look at this in a few paragraphs ahead.
The robbers who stand at the highway or break into peoples’ houses have actually lost their lives to the money they go after. They could be apprehended, imprisoned or executed. A cultist loses his/her life to possible danger of sudden death resulting from show of might and supremacy over rivals. A fighter loses his/her life to unpredictable injuries. A quarrelsome person loses her/his life to shame and disrespect. A gossip loses her/his life to unfriendliness and lonliness. A thief loses his/her life to disgrace and indefinite restrictions. The list goes on. And finally here is the ultimate loss. HEAVEN!
Don’t lose heaven because you lost your life to earthly treasures.
What are you losing your life to right now? Does it really worth it?
Nothing on earth is worth losing your life to, no matter what are, or what they are meant for, except Christ, Him crucified for your redemption, and what add values to human life and brings glory God. Outside of this, nothing absolutely worths it. You too think about..
GETTING IT AT ALL COST
When you choose to get anything out of this life AT ALL COST, not minding the possible adverse effect it will have on people around you, yourself and how displeasing it is to God your Maker, you have lost your soul to this life and to hell. Getting something at all cost simply means you don’t bloody care about how it gets into your hands, or what or who is affected.
Don’t lose your promising life to gain this world’s wealth, fame and power that dissapears and is no more like a vapor. But lose your life to get that which lasts for eternity.
And Jesus queried, “What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
(Mark 8:36-37 KJV)
What you can you give to replace your soul? Nothing!
CHOOSE TO LOSE YOUR LIFE FOR CHRIST!
Don’t you ever make the mistake of losing your life for earthly things. It is foolishness in the highest order and it will cost you your real life (eternal life). Lose your life to gain Christ, and for the sake of the gospel. That will give you real life (eternal life) in return.
Here lies the irony, we are everly ready to lose our money to keep our physical life going, like the man we disccussed about at the beginning of this article, but we are not ready to lose our money or our earthly life to gain Christ and eternal life.
And Jesus said in Mark gospel 8:34-37 “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO LOSE YOUR LIFE FOR CHRIST
Losing your life for Christ means choosing Him over anything in your life. It means to seek Him first before any other thing. It means your life being patterned and modeled by Him and molded in Him. It means saying goodby to worldly life. To lose your life for Christ means doing everything for His sake and glory. To lose your life Christ means to deny yourself, pick up your cross (cares and responsibility) and follow Him. To lose your life for Christ means doing everything for His own sake and reverence.
When you choose to lose your life for Christ, you will have no room to accommodate ungodly activities and immoral lifestyles.
WHAT YOU WILL GAIN WHEN YOU LOSE YOUR LIFE FOR CHRIST?
To continue in next edition.
By Romanus O. Obiekosi
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By Olaegbe David
I got married at 25, finished my PhD at 27 and became a Professor at 40.
So fast you see! Yes, everything around me worked fast. It is now that I realise that it was a misplaced priority.
My ambition blindfolded me and I got it all wrong, that is why I am sharing my experience through this medium to warn and encourage our young mothers not to be careless as I was back then.
I worked very hard as a lecturer and as an administrator, always so busy that it became my language to my children….”I’m busy”
My mum was around to nurse the children for me for some time. The moment they clocked ten, I sent them to boarding schools, though my husband was not in support of this. I always found my way.
I had no warm relationship with my children, 2 boys and a girl.
I never knew it was a bad idea not to have time for my husband, children and the household, until 5 years ago, when guilt, loneliness and restlessness filled my heart.
I sent for my children to rejoice with me on my 60th birthday.
The two boys, living in Canada said they are “busy” and that their sister will come down from South Africa.
Two days to my birthday, my two daughters sent this message to me, “Mum, I am very sorry not to be around over there, there is no time to squeeze out, my husband needs my attention at his newly established clinic and presently, I’m pregnant. “I’m very very busy,
I’m also lonely in a strange land. Please pray for us mum. Happy birthday”. I could not recover from the meaning I got from the message.. “First-things-First”. When they needed me for warmth and discussion, I was not available, now I needed them for warmth and discussion I could not get them, rather they returned my slogan back to me, “I’m busy”
To worsen the matter, my dear husband died in his sleep a month after. …Only one of the children came without his family to the burial ceremony.
I was dumbfounded!!! Considered Opinion: it is good to work and be a hard working fellow.
But hear this important and salient truth:
Parenting is sacrificial work, give it all it takes. Avoid any work that will take away your attention too much from your home – Avoid it and be careful!
SOLIDIFY YOUR HOME FIRST, CREATE TIME FOR YOUR SPOUSE AND CHILDREN.
ESTABLISH THE FEAR OF GOD IN THEIR HEARTS THROUGH YOUR ATTITUDE AND BEHAVIOUR.
THOUGH IT IS COSTLY NOW, THE FUTURE REWARD IS WORTH IT.
THIS IS AN EYE OPENER FOR BOTH MEN & WOMEN.
LET’S BE SELFLESSLY AVAILABLE WHEN OUR CHILDREN NEED US.
If this inspires you, pls share to others.
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Bassam Adranly was born a Palestinian and grew up in the Greek Orthodox Christian tradition.
In a recent interview with Revive Live, he says he often criticized Jews. While in his 20s and attending a university in Tel Aviv, he turned to atheism.
In 1995, he says he had a personal encounter with Jesus Christ that turned his life around.
“Every night I was dreaming of Him, all night through,” Adranly says. “Going with Him and His disciples everywhere. … and all day through, I couldn’t get His words out of my mind.”
Adranly said at the time he had a hatred of Jews like many other Palestinians.
“I was wrestling with this and I knew it was wrong. So I gave myself to the Lord to change it,” he told the television program.
Adranly said God touched his heart and his prejudice was gone.
Today, he is an Arab-Christian living in Israel and pastors a congregation in the city center of Jerusalem.
“The Lord showed me very clearly that nationality is not something I receive. It’s not something that I just take from my old life,” Adranly explained. “The Word of God in 2 Corinthians 5:17 says ‘Who is in Christ is a new creation. Old things have passed away,” and it includes our nationality. So we have to come to the Lord and ask to receive from him what he wants to teach (me) about my nationality, about my people.”
Watch Pastor Bassam Adranly’s interview with Revive Live on Youtube.
Archaeologists Claim to Discover Evidence for Biblical Account of Exodus Near Jordan River
Will Maule, Faithwire
A team of archaeologists has discovered evidence which they believe backs up the biblical account of Moses leading the Israelites out of Egyptian slavery and into the promised land of Canaan.
End Times Prophesies, Mormons, Muslims and Secret Handshakes: The Wild Conspiracy Keeping Pastor Brunson From Returning Home
Despite a long-running debate over the historical accuracy of the story, found in the book of Exodus, archaeologists Ralph K. Hawkins and David Ben-Shlomo have said that there is clear evidence of ruins belonging to a nomadic people group who were traveling from Egypt.
“We have not proved that these camps are from the period of the early Israelites, but it is possible,” Ben-Shlomo told The Express. “If they are, this might fit the biblical story of the Israelites coming from east of the Jordan River, then crossing the Jordan and entering into the hill country of Israel later.”
The archaeologists further noted that they were planning to excavate nearby Uja el-Foqa to figure out whether it may have also be linked to an Israelite settlement in the region.
The story of Moses and the exodus of the Israelites is one of the most well-known in the Bible, particularly as it features the parting of the Red Sea.
Exodus 14: 21-22 reads:
“Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the Lord drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. 22 And the people of Israel went into the midst of the sea on dry ground, the waters being a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.”
Several other stunning discoveries have been made in the region over recent years. In 2013, at Khirbet el-Mastarah in the Jordan Valley, Hawkins and Ben-Shlomo unearthed stone ruins and pottery fragments thought to be from the Late Bronze Age (1400–1200 B.C.) or the Iron Age (1200–1000).
By the end of our 2017 season, we were struck by the fascinating picture that had begun to emerge in the Jordan Valley, a region that up until recently has been virtually unknown archaeologically,” the pair told the Biblical Archaeology Society. “Within a range of just a couple of miles, we may be able to see the evolution of early Israel from a domestic-scale culture [at Khirbet el-Mastarah] to a political-scale culture [at Khirbet ‘Auja el-Foqa].”
(H/T: The Express)
THE BIBLE IS GOD’S OWN WORD AIMED FOR A RELATIONSHIP AND COMMUNICATION Continue reading GOD’S INFALLIBLE WORD WRITTEN FOR US (PART 3)