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WORD4myDAY

IF THE CIRCUMSTANCES ARE NOT SUITABLE  18/06/2024


““You must not marry and have sons or daughters in this place." For this is what the LORD says about the sons and daughters born in this land and about the women who are their mothers and the men who are their fathers: "They will die of deadly diseases. They will not be mourned or buried but will be like refuse lying on the ground. They will perish by sword and famine, and their dead bodies will become food for the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth." (Jer 16:2-4NIV)


Did you see that? God told Jeremiah not to marry in his country at the time he was prophesying to them. Why? Was it because He did not want him to marry at all? No! Rather, it was because the circumstances were not right. The land was facing enemy invasion at the time. In other words, it was a time of war. And God had told him that his country would fall and many of the people would die or be taken into captivity. Anyone, then, who married at that time did so at their own risk. 


Therefore, it was because God wanted to spare Jeremiah the sorrow of losing his wife or children to the on-going war against the Babylonians that He told him not to marry. What this is teaching us, then, is that God is not dumb. He is not stupid or unfeeling. He also can tell when the circumstances of our lives are not right for us to manage certain things, including love relationships. So, He is not going to force anyone to do anything or to go into a love life that they are not ready for or that will end up defeating His purpose for their lives.


Love relationships, for instance, are basically for companionship. That was why God brought Eve to Adam, the first man. God wanted her to be a suitable companion to him in living his life, in managing the earth and in filling the earth with children of his kind. If you, then, can see that the prevailing circumstances of your life will not permit you to experience love in this manner, it is only wise and right for you not to go into any love affair. And will God get angry with you because of that? No! He will only see and praise you as a wise child. 


Well, the point we are making is that if the circumstances of your life are not ripe or suitable for something you want to embark on, don’t force yourself to embark on it. No, you may not hear the voice of God, as Jeremiah did, warning you not to embark on that thing. But you already have His warning in Scriptures, showing you to watch the circumstances of your life before you do anything. Otherwise, you may end up labouring in pain.


Now I pray that you will not labour in vain ever again in your life, in Jesus’ name. Amen. But pay attention to this word of wisdom. And have yourself a lovely day.




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SEPARATE YOURSELF FROM DESTRUCTION  17/06/2024


“Moses got up and went to Dathan and Abiram, and the elders of Israel followed him. He warned the assembly, "Move back from the tents of these wicked men! Do not touch anything belonging to them, or you will be swept away because of all their sins." So they moved away from the tents of Korah, Dathan and Abiram. Dathan and Abiram had come out and were standing with their wives, children and little ones at the entrances to their tents.” (Num 16:25-27NIV)


There are times that the only way to escape from God's judgment or destruction is to separate ourselves from certain individuals. And at such times, prayer, fasting, giving or any other religious duty we may give ourselves to will not work. The only thing that will be our salvation is to move away from those that have been marked for destruction.


Now such was the case with the children of Israel that Moses brought out of Egypt to take into the Promised Land during the rebellion of Korah, Dathan and Abiram. God, at the time, was determined to destroy these men, their immediate families and their possessions. And that was because of their rebellion against the leaders He had appointed over them, that is, Moses and Aaron. But as Moses pointed out to the people, it would not only be these men and their people and things that would be destroyed, when God's moved to judge them. Anyone that associated himself with them, whether out of sympathy or arrogance, would also be destroyed along with them. 


That means if the whole Israelite assembly took their stand with these men, they also would be swallowed up by death along with them. That was why Moses told them to move away from them and their properties. And they did. So, when these men were swallowed up by the ground, the rest of the Israelites were not swallowed up with them.


Similarly, when God was going to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, the angels He sent made it clear to Lot and his family that the only way for them to be saved from what was coming was for them to separate themselves from the people in these cities. In other words, they must get as far away as they could from these two cities. In fact, they were told not to look back at all when escaping. Otherwise, they would be destroyed along with the people of the cities. (Cf. Gen 19:12-26)


Unfortunately, even though they were sternly warned in this manner and told to escape for their lives, Lot still hesitated, according to the bible. That means he was reluctant to leave. Was it because he did not believe the words of those angels? No! Rather, it was because he was counting what his losses would be, if he should leave like that, seeing that he was a wealthy man. He was really hoping there was an alternative to what the angels had told him. 


But there was no alternative to what they had told him. The only way for him and his family to be saved from what was coming was for them to run away from those wicked and unreasonable dwellers of Sodom and Gomorrah. And he did not have forever to do that. He did not even have one more hour to think the matter over or to have a meeting with his family about it. The angels told him that he had to flee with his people immediately. Otherwise, he would miss the mercy of God. And when they saw his reluctance to leave, they grabbed all of them and led them safely out of Sodom. Yet his wife lost her life in the process because she disobeyed the words of the angels that came to them and looked back.


Why am I showing you this? I am showing you because I want you to know that there are times that the only way for you not to suffer, fail or lose your life is for you to separate yourself totally from certain people, organisations, systems or even communities. And that will be because they have been marked for failure or destruction because of their sins or some active curses. So, regardless of what love, sentiments or sympathy you may have for them and regardless of what prayers you may be offering for them, the best you can do for yourself is to get away from them without delay. That is because even if God gives you time to get away from them, you won't have forever to do so. And a little moment of hesitation from you may make you end up as Lot's wife did.


How, then, will you know who to get away from and when to get away from them? Well, Paul gives us a clue to this in 1Corinthians 5. There he tells us that if anyone who calls himself a believer is living in very obvious sins and will not repent, you must stay away from him totally until he repents. Otherwise, you may end up sharing in his judgment. Apart from that, you can't tell who is marked for certain destruction that you need to immediately get away from, unless God reveals them to you. So, you will be in order to regularly pray to God to make known to you relationships or associations that may end up exposing you to destruction and that you need to get away from. And once He reveals them to you, it will be wisdom for you to act accordingly for your safety. 


Have a great day.



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WHERE YOU SHOULD NOT IMITATE JOB  16/06/2024


“As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job's perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” (James 5:11NIV)


One of the lessons that the story of Job teaches is perseverance in the face of life’s challenges. As we see in the bible, this man faced tribulations that many who have lived and died never faced. He lost all his children and all his possessions in one day. And as if that were not enough, he lost his health too and became an object of scorn among those who had once revered and honoured him. To make matters worse, he did not experience any of these things as a wicked man but as a righteous man. (Cf. Job 1&2)


According to the bible, God Himself testified before all His angels and even the devil that Job was an upright and blameless man. If fact, as God pointed out to the devil, there was no one on the face of the earth like Job. Yet this man was severely afflicted. So, you should never think that Satan is incapable of touching you or afflicting you because you are righteous or holy or because you give generously for God’s cause and to people. If he is permitted, Satan will step into your life and afflict you, regardless of what degree of righteousness, holiness or blameless you or others may think you have. (Cf. Job 1:8)


Now we are not told how many days, weeks, months or years Job’s afflictions lasted. But we are told that the man endured everything. He did not give up on God because of his afflictions. Even though his own wife took advantage of the situation to torture him and to pressure him to denounce God, he still would not denounce him. And though his friends also seized the period to harass him and express their reservations about his devotion to God, he did not give up on Him.


Yes, at some point, he became offended and got angry with God for everything he was going through. But he never for once denied or cursed him. He maintained his integrity all through. So, at some point, God, who is full of compassion and mercy, stepped in, set him right where he was wrong, healed him, made him whole and restored his life, home and fortunes. What a good God!


Therefore, whatever you may be faced with, don’t give up on God. No, do not deny Him or disown Him because of your trials or challenges. That is because the bible says:


“So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, "He who is coming will come and will not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him." (Heb 10:35-38NIV)


Did you see that? Our unfailing confidence in God will be richly rewarded, just as Job’s unfailing confidence in Him was rewarded. All we need is to persevere, even as we do His will. And in just a very little while, we will see Him move on our behalf. Yes, sometimes we may think He is not fast enough or that He is just too quiet about our situation. But we are told in that text that He will not delay His work or action for our salvation, deliverance or exaltation. That means even when we think He is not working at all or when we cannot see what He is doing, He is working fast for our good. And if we do not shrink back, we will see what He has been doing all along for our good.


But then, there is another side to Job’s story, which we hardly notice or pay attention to. And that has to do with the fact that he did not resist the devil at all in his life. Of course, God permitted the devil, as the story goes, to touch his family, possessions and even body. And that was to show the devil that his faith in him was true and genuine. But even though God permitted the devil in that manner, he too had a right here on earth and through his faith in God to resist him. 


Unfortunately, he did not even know at the time that Satan was the one responsible for all that he suffered and was going through. He thought God was to blame for everything. He thought that God was always the one behind everything good and everything bad. And his ignorance in this matter gave Satan all the time and space he needed to make matters go from bad to worse for him. If God, then, had not limited the devil and his works and told him not to touch his life, he would have killed him. 


In like manner, many are suffering in the hands of the devil today because of ignorance of different kinds. It may be ignorance that is associated with his works or one that is associated with not knowing that he can be resisted in the name of Jesus Christ. The bible tells us that we can resist the devil and that we should resist him steadfastly. It also tells us not to give him any opportunity to work in our lives. Then it tells us the nature of his work – it tells us that he is a thief, killer and destroyer. So, anything that is geared towards stealing from us, killing us or destroying us or anything that belongs to us is a work of the devil, and we must not allow it. (Cf. John 10:10; Eph 4:27; Eph 6:10-18; James 4:7; 1Pet 5:8)


This, then, is one area in which we must not imitate Job. Job did not resist the devil at all. Instead, he accepted his problems as coming from God and allowed Satan to persist in afflicting him. And as I pointed out before, if God had not been merciful to him, he would have been utterly destroyed by this enemy of his soul. But we have been clearly told that we can resist the devil and that he will run away from us when we do so. Job did not resist the devil because he did not know that he could resist him. But we know. So, if we allow Satan to work in our lives and mess us up, we must blame ourselves and ourselves only. 


Now I don’t want to end up blaming myself for giving Satan any room at all to work in my life. So, I have got my mind made up to daily take advantage of the grace of God to say ‘No’ to this wicked being’s works in my life and affairs. And I enjoin you too to make up your mind to do the same.




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HOW FAR WILL YOU GO? 15/06/2024


“And say to Amasa, 'Are you not my own flesh and blood? May God deal with me, be it ever so severely, if from now on you are not the commander of my army in place of Joab.'” (2Sam 19:13NIV)


Those were David’s words to Amasa, his nephew, when he was labouring to bring all Israel back to him after the rebellion of Absalom had been squashed. And did he fulfil this promise or not? He did, for we are later told in the bible, “Then the king said to Amasa, "Summon the men of Judah to come to me within three days, and be here yourself."” (2Sam 20:4NIV)


That means David actually made Amasa the commander of his entire army in place of Joab. And was Joab happy with that? No! Truly, judging by some standards, Amasa was not as competent as Joab in leading Israel’s army. For example, he was late in carrying out the very first task he was given by the king (2Sam 20:5). And if he were to be judged by that, he would cease being Israel’s army commander from that time on.


But then, David did not make him the commander of the army because he was more competent than Joab. Rather, he made him the commander because he wanted to end the bloodshed that the rebellion of Absalom had started and make peace with everyone. As we are shown in the bible, Amasa was the commander of the army of Absalom. And his army was larger than the one David had with him. So, it was only wise of David to bring someone like him on board and use his influence to unite the divided armies of the nation. (Cf. 2Sam 17:25)


However, because Joab was not happy with the fact that this man, who had been on the side of rebellious Absalom, was taking over his place, he made a move in disguise to kill him. Look at how the account is rendered in the bible:


“While they were at the great rock in Gibeon, Amasa came to meet them. Joab was wearing his military tunic, and strapped over it at his waist was a belt with a dagger in its sheath. As he stepped forward, it dropped out of its sheath. Joab said to Amasa, "How are you, my brother?" Then Joab took Amasa by the beard with his right hand to kiss him. Amasa was not on his guard against the dagger in Joab's hand, and Joab plunged it into his belly, and his intestines spilled out on the ground. Without being stabbed again, Amasa died. Then Joab and his brother Abishai pursued Sheba son of Bicri.” (2Sam 20:8-10NIV)


Did you see what Joab did in order to maintain his position as Israel’s general? He killed an innocent man. He killed a man that took him as a brother and who had not offended him in any way. And Amasa was indeed his relative. He was his cousin, the son of his mother’s sister. Yet he did not mind killing him in a very cruel and diabolical way. (Cf. 2Sam 17:25)


Well, that is to show us how far some people will go in order to have what they want. They are willing to sacrifice even their own family members or relatives in order to realise their ambitions. And every day we hear news of people sacrificing their families or friends for money, blackmailing their colleagues at work for positions or selling their neighbours to wicked and unreasonable people in order to take over their wealth. We even hear news of people using parts of their own bodies for rituals in order to gain wealth or some earthly positions.


Now I may not know how you far you are willing to go in order to realise certain ambitions of yours. And I may not know how much you are willing to sacrifice in order to satisfy your desires. But I do know that God is watching every one of us and looking at the steps we are taking to realise our dreams or ambitions. And someday, He will judge us accordingly.


Joab was not judged by David for his ruthless killing of innocent men, men better than him. But Solomon, who became king after David, did not hesitate at all to judge him. He saw to it that he paid with his blood for all his crimes. So, even if the society you now live in or the government of your place will not judge you today for ruthlessly destroying others in order to satisfy your cravings, it does not mean that God won’t find someone else who will judge you tomorrow. (Cf. 2Kings 2:28-35)


By the way, apart from the fact that God will judge all people on the day He has set at the end of this age, He is daily judging people for their works (Zeph 3:5). It is just that it is not every time that people can tell that certain problems they are facing in life are symptoms of God’s judgment on their lives. So, you cannot escape God’s judgment for whatever you are doing, good or bad. And if you are going too far, going beyond what is righteous in realising your dreams, He will at the right time make sure you duly pay for your excesses.




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HAVE A SENSE OF DEVOTION 14/06/2024


“All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possession was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there was no needy person among them…” (Acts 4:32-34NIV) 


Now I want to ask, “Can that still happen among us today? Can we today have a situation in which there is no needy person among us?” Why not? Why can’t we experience the same thing? I believe we can. If we will devote ourselves to one another in love, this same thing is going to happen in our midst. 


But today, in the same Christian assembly, some people will put on clothes that are close to rags and some others will come around with flying robes and apparel. Yes, a family will come around for a church meeting with two or three cars while several others don’t even have a bicycle to ride. Yet all of us will sit together, pray together, lift our hands together, sing together, give offerings together and dance together. Sometimes, some of us will not even allow others to move or dance around freely because of our flying robes and expensive apparel. Yet our eyes cannot see the needs of others, because we have become so blind.


I will tell you this: many of us are blind; we are unable to see the things that God wants us to see. And that is because we have no sense of devotion. We have no sense of belonging. We don’t think that the church is a family. And sometimes I don’t blame us, for some families of the world are like that. Children of the same mother and the same father will come together for the same programme or meeting, and some among them will be well dressed while some others will be poorly clothed. Yet their brothers and sisters will not ask, “What is wrong with you? Why are you like this? Is anything the matter with your business? How can we help you?” Rather, they will pride themselves in the fact that they are better than their own brother or sister. That is a spirit of the world, which should not be in the church at all. 


When you see a family that is functioning as God wants families to function, they will be devoted to one another. The brothers and sisters in that family will be devoted to one another. They will want every one of them to do well in life. Your brothers and sisters will be committed to your welfare. If things are not going on well for you, they will be on your case. And if you want to marry the wrong person, they will not allow you or support you. They will say, “No, you will not marry this person, for he is going to destroy your life.” And that is because they are concerned. They know that, ultimately, they are not the ones that will live with you in that marriage; you will be living alone with whomever you marry. And by the time you begin to smell pepper, they will not be there with you.


But in the church today we will say, “It is not our business.” And that is because we have no sense of devotion; we have no sense of belonging. But this is your family, my beloved. That was how the brethren were taught by the apostles to see the church in the early days. To them the church is the household of God. So, when you come into the church, you know that you have come into the family of God. And you have to be devoted to that family. You have to be responsible in that family. And may you be taught and strengthened by the Spirit of God to be so, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


Enjoy your day.



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GIVE YOURSELF TO HIM FIRST 13/06/2024


“And they exceeded our expectations: they gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us.” (2Corinthians 8:5NIV) 


Who was Paul referring to in our opening text? The Macedonian Christians! And what was the first thing they were reported to have done? They gave themselves to the Lord and to His people. That is where to begin. Give yourself to the Lord first. And once you have given yourself to the Lord, nothing will be too difficult to give to Him. 


This, however, has to be a conscious thing. You don’t release yourself to the Lord by accident. Your faculties and everything about you have to be involved. Do you release yourself to people by accident? I doubt it. I know there are people who may want to manipulate you and get you to give yourself to them unconsciously. But generally, we don’t give ourselves to people unconsciously. And it must be the same in our dealings with God. 


Yes, sometimes, we may give ourselves to the Lord unconsciously. I mean there are times that we just join other people of God in doing what they are doing without even thinking about what it means or what it implies. But the giving of ourselves to God has to be a conscious thing. We are to consciously release ourselves to Him. You are to do this out of your own volition. That means you have thought about it and have concluded that that is the right thing to do. So you say, “Lord, I release myself to you. I have thought about this and have seen that it is the right thing to do, especially in the light of all that you have done for me. So, my hands are now yours. My legs are now yours. Every part of me is now yours. You can do with me as you please.” 


Once you have done that, I am telling you, there is nothing that will be difficult for you to release to the Lord. One of the reasons it has been so difficult for some of us to release our substance to the Lord is that we have not fully yielded ourselves to Him. There is no greater gift a man can give than himself. Or is there a greater gift? When you release yourself to a man, you have given him the greatest gift of all. So, nothing else will be difficult for you to give to Him.


In like manner, when you have freely given yourself to God, nothing will be too much or difficult for you to give to Him. So, start by giving yourself to Him. Then you will soon see that it will not be hard or difficult for you again to give Him anything and everything you have.



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CARRIERS OF HIS POWER 12/06/2024

“One day Jesus was teaching, and Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there. They had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with Jesus to heal those who were ill.” (Luke 5:17NIV) 


What do we see here? We see that Jesus was in a place, teaching the people. And those who were there could recognise that God’s power was there with Him to heal the sick. How were they able to tell? It must be that they could literally feel God’s power there. So, they began to take advantage of it to be healed. In fact, the next incident Luke reports in the passage is about some people that brought a man that was paralytic into the place. And he did not leave the place the same way he came in. He was healed, for the power of God was present there to heal the sick. (Cf. Luke 6:18-26)


Also, in the same gospel, chapter 6, from verse 17, Luke says, “He went down with them and stood on a level place. A large crowd of his disciples was there and a great number of people from all over Judea, from Jerusalem, and from the coastal region around Tyre and Sidon, who had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those troubled by impure spirits were cured, and the people all tried to touch him, because power was coming out from him and healing them all.” (Luke 6:17-19NIV) Look at that. The power of God was coming from Jesus and healing the people. So, they were trying to touch Him, for they could sense that the power of God was coming out from Him. 


We too, who believe in Christ Jesus, must get to that place where people will be able to tell or sense that God’s power is flowing out from us. Many of us have not experienced this. That will probably be because we are not desirous of experiencing it or because we are ignorant of the fact that we are carriers of His power. And we are carriers of His power. We just need to know this and continually pray, as Paul prays for the Ephesian brethren, that we will know that His power is at work in us and also know the greatness of this power and how to take advantage of it. (Cf. Eph 1:18-22)


Look at the apostles of old. There was a time, for example, that the people were placing their sick people on the road so that Peter’s shadow would fall on them and they would get well. Why were they doing that? It was because they could tell that he was carrying God’s power everywhere he went. Also, there was a time that people were taking aprons and handkerchiefs from Paul to place on their sick folks, so that they could get well. Why? They could tell that God’s power was coming out from him and that anything he used would have that power on it. (Cf. Acts 5:12-16 & 19:11-12)


Now it can be the same for us. Our cloths can carry God’s power. Our beds can have the power of God settled on them. The things we use can have the power of God settled on them. It is just for us to know that we are carriers of this power and know how to take advantage of it and unleash it on our lives’ situation and for those around us to enjoy. And I pray that you will be enlightened more and more about this power of God that is resident in you, so that you may make the most of it in doing His will.


Have a splendid day. 


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CARRIERS OF HIS POWER 12/06/2024

“One day Jesus was teaching, and Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there. They had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with Jesus to heal those who were ill.” (Luke 5:17NIV) 


What do we see here? We see that Jesus was in a place, teaching the people. And those who were there could recognise that God’s power was there with Him to heal the sick. How were they able to tell? It must be that they could literally feel God’s power there. So, they began to take advantage of it to be healed. In fact, the next incident Luke reports in the passage is about some people that brought a man that was paralytic into the place. And he did not leave the place the same way he came in. He was healed, for the power of God was present there to heal the sick. (Cf. Luke 6:18-26)


Also, in the same gospel, chapter 6, from verse 17, Luke says, “He went down with them and stood on a level place. A large crowd of his disciples was there and a great number of people from all over Judea, from Jerusalem, and from the coastal region around Tyre and Sidon, who had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those troubled by impure spirits were cured, and the people all tried to touch him, because power was coming out from him and healing them all.” (Luke 6:17-19NIV) Look at that. The power of God was coming from Jesus and healing the people. So, they were trying to touch Him, for they could sense that the power of God was coming out from Him. 


We too, who believe in Christ Jesus, must get to that place where people will be able to tell or sense that God’s power is flowing out from us. Many of us have not experienced this. That will probably be because we are not desirous of experiencing it or because we are ignorant of the fact that we are carriers of His power. And we are carriers of His power. We just need to know this and continually pray, as Paul prays for the Ephesian brethren, that we will know that His power is at work in us and also know the greatness of this power and how to take advantage of it. (Cf. Eph 1:18-22)


Look at the apostles of old. There was a time, for example, that the people were placing their sick people on the road so that Peter’s shadow would fall on them and they would get well. Why were they doing that? It was because they could tell that he was carrying God’s power everywhere he went. Also, there was a time that people were taking aprons and handkerchiefs from Paul to place on their sick folks, so that they could get well. Why? They could tell that God’s power was coming out from him and that anything he used would have that power on it. (Cf. Acts 5:12-16 & 19:11-12)


Now it can be the same for us. Our cloths can carry God’s power. Our beds can have the power of God settled on them. The things we use can have the power of God settled on them. It is just for us to know that we are carriers of this power and know how to take advantage of it and unleash it on our lives’ situation and for those around us to enjoy. And I pray that you will be enlightened more and more about this power of God that is resident in you, so that you may make the most of it in doing His will.


Have a splendid day. 


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THE RICH MUST BE WRONG 11/06/2024


“Do not show partiality to a poor person at his trial.” (Ex 23:3GNT)


I really cannot recollect the number of times I have on the road witnessed commercial motorcyclists abusing and cursing private vehicle owners, even when it was clear that they were in the wrong. Unfortunately, most times, when others would intervene and judge such cases between people, it was the one that appeared to be rich among them that they would want to blame. Some would not even bother to find out what really happened before point accusing fingers.


Now why is that often the case? It is because most poor people have hidden bitterness in them against rich people. And that is because they usually think they are the reason they are poor. But while it is true that rich people can be oppressive and unfeeling, it is not every rich person that is hostile, wicked or oppressive. There are rich people that have become rich through the help of God and their honest and diligent labour. And there are rich people that are kind, generous and peace-loving in every way.


Therefore, we can’t always hold the rich responsible for the poverty of the poor. In fact, in many cases, they are not to blame at all for the poverty of the poor. People become poor and stay poor in life for different reasons, some of which could be lack of financial intelligence, laziness, pride, misfortunes and so forth. 


If you are poor, then, you should settle down and carefully study the reason for your poverty and misery instead of always blaming the rich in your land for them. That way, you can begin to take steps that will take you out of poverty and lead you into abundance.


In any case, in our opening bible text, God warns us not to function with bitterness against the rich, regardless of our position in life. Why? It is so that we will not become judges with evil intentions. See, as long as we are bitter against those who are rich in our lives or around us, we will never see anything good in or about them. They and whatever they do will always be wrong in our eyes. This being the case, whenever we have any opportunity to judge a case between a rich person and some poor fellow, we will most likely favour the poor person against the rich one, without examining the facts or even with the facts clearly showing us something different. 


Now when we function like that, we are promoting wickedness in our land; we are perverting justice in the land. And God will not hold us guiltless. This explains why some people will never be rich or great in life. Yes, they themselves want to be rich and great. But they are filled with hot bitterness and anger against rich and great people. Therefore, God Himself is resisting their advancement and exaltation in life. And He will continue to do so unless they repent and cleanse their hearts. 


Perhaps you too are guilty of these things. Perhaps your bitterness, anger and injustice against those who are richer or more highly placed in life than you are the reason your life is stagnant. Every time you are speaking against them and working against them, even when they have not offended you or done you any wrong. You need to repent without delay and allow God to wash your heart with His word. Otherwise, that great height or better life you are eyeing and wishing for yourself in this life may forever elude you. 


Mind you, I am not saying we should not condemn the rich when they are wrong. By all means, we should judge them wrong wherever they are wrong. But we must never assume that the rich must be wrong in every case they have against the poor. God will never work with such assumptions. So, we too should henceforth stop working with them.



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SALVATION FROM UNREASONABLE AND WICKED PEOPLE 10/06/2024


“…and that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men; for not all have faith.” (2Thess 3:2NKJV)


As bible accounts show us, there was a time that King Saul, in his quest to capture and kill David, was ready to kill and destroy anyone associated with him. First, it was his own son, Jonathan, that he wanted to kill. He wanted to kill him because of his friendship with David. But originally, it was because he wanted the throne for Jonathan that he wanted to kill David. Why, then, would he want to kill him? And who would he give the throne to after killing the son that was the most qualified of all his sons to take over from him? He was not thinking about this at all the day he hurled his spear at him. Why? He had become wicked and unreasonable. (Cf. 1Sam 20:24-34)


Also, because he had become wicked and unreasonable, he made a move to attack Prophet Samuel and all the other prophets with him, just because he had learnt that David was with them. But God disgraced him that day and delivered them from his hand. (Cf. 1Sam 19:18-24)


Unfortunately, the story went differently with the priests at Nob. Their head priest, Ahimelech, had interacted with David briefly when he was fleeing from Saul. And he had innocently done this without knowing what was going on between the two of them. But because Saul had become wicked in heart and unreasonable in his actions, he did not even bother to investigate Ahimelech’s involvement with David at all. He simply ordered his execution and the execution of all his family members and the town of the priests. Think about that. (Cf. 1Sam 22)


Now, and this is something I want you to pay attention to, when Saul ordered his officials to rise and kill the priests of God, they would not listen to him. Yes, it was a royal order and these men could be executed themselves for defying it. Nevertheless, they would not carry it out. Why? First, it was because they feared God. In other words, these men knew that there was no way they would touch God’s anointed priests and be guiltless. And since He is greater than their king, they would rather obey Him than obey their king, even if that would bring punishment on them.


Second, those men would not carry out Saul’s order because they had not lost their minds like him. That means they could tell, based on the explanation of Ahimelech, that he had no fault at all in helping David. So, killing him, the priests with him and entire town of the priests had no justification whatsoever. Oh, that God would bless us in our various government and private institutions with such men and women, men and women that will not allow any unreasonable or wicked person to use them to condemn or punish the innocent!


Unfortunately, that same day, there was another wicked and unreasonable person like Saul with him. His name was Doeg the Edomite. He was just like Esau, his ancestor, who was godless and had no care at all for spiritual things. And it was he that rose up to strike down Ahimelech, all the anointed priests of God with him and the entire town of the priests, with all their women, children and livestock. Why did he do that? What was he going to benefit by killing innocent people? Had Saul promised him a great position? No, the account does not say that. So, he just did what he did because he was a wicked, unreasonable, godless and bloodthirsty fellow. 


In like manner, unreasonable and wicked people do not need to have any justifiable reason to attack you or to seek to destroy you. In other words, even if there is no benefit for them in harming you, they may still want to harm you. Or if they simply feel like harming you or someone tells them to harm you, they may not mind doing so. Why? It is because they do not care about tomorrow or the future. No, they do not care about human lives, properties, love, justice or peace. They do not care about the consequences of their actions, even if they may result in their own death or destruction. They only care about themselves and the immediate gratification or satisfaction they are going to get from what they do. 


So, you cannot reason with them or counsel them because they are not different from wild animals. All they want is to consume to their satisfaction now. If tomorrow comes, fine. And if it does not come, it is fine with them as well. These ones are also not different from machines, which are being operated with a remote control. Therefore, they can only do what they are asked to do by those who have possessed them – they cannot ask questions.


You can see why kidnappers, bandits, terrorists, robbers, serial killers, rapists, paedophiles, thieves of public funds and those who use people for money rituals behave the way they do. They do not care about those things that God fearing and sensible people care about. They care only about themselves. So, unless they are destroyed or saved by God, most people will not be safe around them.


Which, then, is better, their salvation or their destruction? Evidently, their salvation is better. In fact, God, as the bible shows us, wants all such people saved (1Tim 2:1-4). However, while they are yet living their wicked and unreasonable life, we will need to be protected from them, so that we do not become victims of their wickedness. That is why Paul, in our opening text, tells us that one of the prayers we should be offering is that we will be protected from unreasonable and wicked people, people who have no faith in God. And we will do well to continually offer this prayer for ourselves and for all our loved ones, for we all have around us wicked, unreasonable and godless people.



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AN ATTITUDE OF THANKSGIVING  09/06/2024


‘A person can receive only what is given them from heaven. You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him.’” (John 3:25-28NIV)


What said these words? It was John the Baptist. And there is a part of what he said that I want you to pay attention to, which is, “A person can receive only what is given them from heaven.” In other words, it is only what God has given you that you can legitimately receive – you cannot receive what He has not given. 


Yes, you can go out of your way to take for yourself what God has not given to you. But that is going to get you into trouble sooner or later. It does not matter whether it is manipulation, force, witchcraft or sorcery that you are using to get what God has not given to you. It can only lead you into trouble. It is only what God has given that does not come with sorrow or pains.


Similarly, Paul says this to the Corinthians: “For what makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do your boast as though you did not?” (1Corinthians 4:7NIV) Did you see that? Is there any good thing that has come to us legitimately that we have not received from God? Did we bring anything into this world when we came? No, we brought nothing. Everything we have had and enjoyed in this life has come to us from God’s hands. Even the very life in us has come to us from Him. Our bodies also have come to us from Him. 


That being the case, we ought to be grateful to Him. Our attitude to God must always be that of thanksgiving. And this is not only about when we receive from God things we have not worked for. Yes, from time to time, God will move people to give us gifts. We should be thankful to Him on such occasions for moving people’s hearts to give to us. And we may not really see anything wrong or difficult in doing that. But when it comes to those things we have worked to earn, we may not see the need to be thankful to God for them. However, whether what has come to us is what we have worked for or a gift, we must understand that nothing can come to us except what God has given. 


Mind you, speaking about receiving gifts from people, it is not everyone that God moves their heart to give to you that will give to you. Some people may not give to you, even though God has spoken to them about giving something to you. So, if someone takes that bold step to give to you as he has been instructed by the Lord, if someone matches up their desire to give to you by actually giving to you, you should be thankful to God for it.


Am I saying we should not thank men for what they do for us or give to us? No! It is also important that we learn to thank human beings. When people give us gifts or do something for us, we should thank them. Even when people pay us for goods sold to them or services rendered for them, we should thank them. That is because there are people all around us who worked for some people or the government and are yet to collect what is due them. So, if someone pays you for what you have done for them, you should thank the person.


But more importantly, you must acknowledge God as the one responsible for all the good things coming to your life and be thankful to Him. You must not overlook any of the things He is doing in your life. Otherwise, you will be exhibiting an attitude of ingratitude. And ingratitude always comes with consequences.



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WHAT TIME IS IT? 08/06/2024


“Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.” (Proverbs 6:6-8NIV)


Solomon, in our opening text, is telling us to learn from the ant. And what are we to learn from it? It is the fact that even though the ant has no overseer or commander, it knows when to gather and store its provisions. That means the ant knows when to work and when it cannot work. 


It is just like what our Lord once said to His disciples. He said, “We must do the work of Him who sent me while it is day. Night is coming, when no one can work.” That means He knew when He was meant to be working and what He was meant to be doing. And when His time came, He knew that His time had come and was ready to glorify God with His death. (Cf. John 9:4; John 17:1)


Now since our Lord Jesus knew what He was meant to be doing with His life and devoted Himself to doing it, we too must know what we are meant to be doing with our lives. We must know what time it is in our lives. Is it a time for us to be working? Is it a time for us to be resting? Is it a time for mourning or a time for laughing? Is it a time to make war against people or things that have been limiting or hindering us? 


What time exactly is it in our lives? We need to know, if we will progress and be fruitful with our lives as God wants.



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WHAT TIME IS IT? 08/06/2024


“Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.” (Proverbs 6:6-8NIV)


Solomon, in our opening text, is telling us to learn from the ant. And what are we to learn from it? It is the fact that even though the ant has no overseer or commander, it knows when to gather and store its provisions. That means the ant knows when to work and when it cannot work. 


It is just like what our Lord once said to His disciples. He said, “We must do the work of Him who sent me while it is day. Night is coming, when no one can work.” That means He knew when He was meant to be working and what He was meant to be doing. And when His time came, He knew that His time had come and was ready to glorify God with His death. (Cf. John 9:4; John 17:1)


Now since our Lord Jesus knew what He was meant to be doing with His life and devoted Himself to doing it, we too must know what we are meant to be doing with our lives. We must know what time it is in our lives. Is it a time for us to be working? Is it a time for us to be resting? Is it a time for mourning or a time for laughing? Is it a time to make war against people or things that have been limiting or hindering us? 


What time exactly is it in our lives? We need to know, if we will progress and be fruitful with our lives as God wants.



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DEAL WITH IT 07/06/2024


“Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.” (Genesis 4:8NIV) 


Did you see that? Cain lured his brother to a field to kill him. He told him to come with him to the field. And Abel followed him. He followed him because he did not suspect him. He, of course, must have seen that his face was fallen and unhappy. But he did not think that was going to be a problem. Perhaps he had been going out with him to the field like that in the past. It may even be that Cain had been showing him care and love before, since he was his elder brother. So, he did not suspect him. Of course, he should have paid attention to his countenance. But for reasons not stated in Scriptures he did not pay attention to it. And he lost his life as a result of this.


But why did Cain end up killing his brother? It was because he did not guard his heart. He allowed anger, envy and bitterness to take root in his heart. So, he ended up killing the very one he was supposed to protect. And when God came to him, all He wanted to know was where his brother was. That was because he was supposed to know; he was supposed to be his keeper. But he had killed him.


Now all along, evil had been resident in this man’s heart, but he did not deal with it. We are told in John’s first epistle that Cain was of the evil one (1John 3:12). That explains why he and his offering were not accepted in the first place. He had not been living right before God. His heart had not been right before him. But he did not deal with it. And because he did not deal with it, the occasion in which he and his brother brought God offerings revealed the evil in his heart. So, if you will not deal with the evil in your heart, a time is coming when circumstances of life will bring it out in the open. Then everybody will see you for who you really are.


In the first place, you are not supposed to permit any form of evil in your heart. But we know that, as long as we are in this world, all kinds of evil desires will be making war against our souls. That is why Peter tells us in his first epistle to abstain from the evil desires that war against our souls (1Peter 2:11). So, we may have all kinds of evil desires crouching at the doors of our hearts. It is on us, however, to protect these hearts, so that these evil things will not gain entrance into them, not to talk of find expression in them.


But suppose some evil seed has already gained entrance into your heart. Then you need to tell yourself the truth about it and deal with it. You need to rid yourself of it by allowing the word of God that is being planted in your heart to take charge of you. James tells us that the word of God is able to rid our lives of every kind of evil and save our souls (James 1:21). But if we do not take His word seriously, we stand no chance to win this war or walk in victory over any of the evil things Satan may bring to possess our souls.




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HE WILL NOT TAKE SIDES WITH YOU 06/06/2024


“But Samuel replied: ‘Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king.’” (1Samuel 15:22-23NIV)


Did you see what Samuel said about God’s view of rebellion? He said rebellion is like the sin of divination and arrogance like idolatry. So, as far as God is concerned, rebellion is like divination – it is like practising sorcery or witchcraft. If you, then, are rebellious, God sees you as one who is seeking to manipulate those who have authority over you. 


And that is exactly what you are doing. You are trying to force them to abandon what they know to be right and follow your ways. That is why you are giving them attitudes and disobeying them. So, God says you are a witch and an idolater. How, then, will He take sides with you? It is not going to happen. Instead, He will expect those who have authority over you to deal with you.


Yes, there are times that those in authority may go beyond the laws or what is reasonable in judging rebellion or disobedience to authority. And if that happens to you, you should know that you are the cause. Even when you are in the will of God, those who have authority over will still judge your rebellion. No, God will not see your stand against their order or instructions as rebellion. But they will see it that way and so will judge it. 


When Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refused to bow for the idol of King Nebuchadnezzar, they were standing in the will of God. Yet their king did not see it that way. So, he sentenced them to death. He commanded that they be thrown into the fiery furnace he had prepared for rebels. And the only reason God protected them was that they were in His will. (Cf. Dan 3)


Daniel experienced something similar. King Darius issued an edict that no one should pray to anyone else but himself. Now Daniel knew that this edict was contrary to the righteousness of God. So, he disregarded it and continued to pray to God. That, of course, resulted in his being thrown into the den of lions. And the only reason God came to his rescue was that he was standing in His will. If he had not been standing in His will, he would have perished in that situation. (Cf. Dan 6)


I want you to understand, then, that it is only those standing in the will of God that He is under the obligation to protect from their leaders. Those who are not standing in His will should not expect Him to protect them from their leaders, if they are rebellious. And it is only if they are shown mercy that they will be protected. So, keep away from any form of wilful rebellion. God will not take sides with you on it.



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SUBMISSION AND PROTECTION  05/06/2024


“The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: “Fellow Ephesians, doesn’t all the world know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the temple of the great Artemis and of her image, which fell from heaven? Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to calm down and not do anything rash. You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess. If, then, Demetrius and his fellow craftsmen have a grievance against anybody, the courts are open and there are proconsuls. They can press charges. If there is anything further you want to bring up, it must be settled in a legal assembly. As it is, we are in danger of being charged with rioting because of what happened today. In that case we would not be able to account for this commotion, since there is no reason for it.” After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.” (Acts 19:35-41NIV)


There was a riot calling for Paul’s head. But when the city clerk would address the matter, he made the people see that there was no reason at all for their agitation or rioting. He told them that the people who started the riot were out of line. According to him, the people they were accusing were law-abiding citizens of Rome. They were not temple robbers or blasphemers. So, there was no reason to be calling for their heads. And if anyone did have issues with them, the courts were always open for them to approach and press charges. That was how God used that man to rescue Paul. 


Also, in chapter 18 of the same book of Acts, God rescued Paul in a similar fashion. He was in Corinth then. And Gallio was the proconsul of Achaia. The Jews at the time made a united attack on Paul and brought him to the court. But Gallio would not even allow them to say a word before telling them that he would not be a judge of matters concerning the Jewish laws or religion. Therefore, they were ejected from his court. And that was the end of the story -- God had protected Paul from his enemies, using an unbelieving government official.


If you, then, are law-abiding, God can use the leaders of your government to protect you. You may not be able to say exactly how He will do that. But He is able to use them. And that is why you have to be submissive to those over you wherever you are and to the laws of your land. 


There are people who pray all the time for God’s protection. They want Him to keep them safe when travelling and in their workplaces. But they would not obey traffic rules and regulations. Also, they would not take seriously the safety rules given in their workplaces. How on earth is God going to protect them?


God has given you leaders who are giving you instructions on how to be safe at work, on the road and so forth. But you will not listen to them. Instead, you are praying and doing vigils to have God’s protection. How is that going to happen? You are your own enemy.


We see similar things happening in our various Christian assemblies. Many get into trouble because they will not submit to their church leaders. We are told in the bible of how God protected a king of Israel from the king of Aram. And how did He do it? It was through the submissiveness of the man to Prophet Elisha. Any time Elisha gave him instructions about where to go and not to go, he obeyed. So, God was able to protect him and his kingdom. (Cf. 2Kings 6:8-12)


Now I am not saying you should turn your church leader to God in your life or allow any leader to take the place of the Holy Spirit in your life. No! But if you believe that they have the Spirit of God in them and that the counsel they are giving you is not contrary to Scriptures, you should submit to them. That may just be what will save your life, your home, your business or your job. 


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TALK TO GOD 04/06/2024

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7NIV) 


What is Paul saying here and what is he not saying? Well, Paul says do not be anxious about anything. In other words, do not become worried because of anything, the things you want to do, the things you want to have or the challenges you are faced with at the moment. Do not allow anything you are faced with to make you downcast. 


But then, observe that Paul does not say, “Don’t worry about anything. All will be well by themselves.” He does not say that at all. Unfortunately, that is the idea that some people have. They think when we say, “Don’t worry about anything,” we are saying, “Things will somehow get better by themselves. So don’t worry about anything.” 


But things don’t get better by themselves. If things do not become bad by themselves, then, they are not going to become good by themselves. There are forces, influences, beings that make things bad and make life sometimes miserable for us. And if things are going to become good or better for us, God must step in and change them. 


That is why Paul does not just say, “Do not worry about anything”; he also says, “In every situation, talk to God.” He says tell God what you want, what you need. And when you do this, first, He will allow His peace to take charge of your heart and mind. This, of course, does not mean that the circumstances of your life have changed. Things may still remain the same for you or even worse, though you have cast them on God. But He will let His peace fill and calm your heart and mind. He will do this to assure you that He is in charge of the situation, even though you may not yet see anything happening about the matter you have entrusted to Him. 


The second thing God will do, when you talk to Him about your situation, is to actually deal with that situation. Of course, everything He is doing to handle it may not be immediately clear to you. But sooner or later, you will see that the matter has been handled and that the peace He has given to you in your heart is not false peace at all. So, don’t give room for any form of worry in your life. You just talk to God about the situation, whatever it may be. And He will have it handled for you. 



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SPEED UP THEIR READINESS 03/06/2024


“The angel of the LORD appeared to her and said, "You are sterile and childless, but you are going to conceive and have a son. Now see to it that you drink no wine or other fermented drink and that you do not eat anything unclean, because you will conceive and give birth to a son. No razor may be used on his head, because the boy is to be a Nazirite, set apart to God from birth, and he will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines."” (Judg 13:3-5NIV)


Who did the angel of the Lord appear to, as we see in this text? It was Manoah’s wife, that is Samson’s mother. And what did He tell her about the child that she was going to have? It was that the child would begin the deliverance of the nation of Israel from the hands of the Philistines. So, if God is going to deliver a land or anyone from any form of oppression, He will begin somewhere and with someone. 


But then, for those who are being oppressed, the person God uses in delivering them is often not their concern but the time He begins to use that person to deliver them. He can use anyone He likes, as long as the person begins the work on time and also succeeds in getting it done. Therefore, it is not enough for us to be praying that God will raise deliverers for us or for our nation, deliverers that will rescue us from all the mess we are in; it is equally important that we are praying that He speed up their readiness to do the job. 


Why is this important? It is because until God considers people ready for whatever job He wants them to do, He cannot use them for it. They may know that He wants to use them in certain ways or even have a great burden to be used by Him in some ways. But until He has made them ready for what He wants to use them for, He won't send them forth. Otherwise, they may mess up the work or turn away from it for one reason or the other. 


For example, even though God had chosen Moses for the deliverance of His people, something the man himself could sense, He did not call him and send him until he was eighty years old. Is that to say that people always have to be as old as Moses before God uses them in any tangible way? No! God did not wait for Samson or David to become eighty years of age before He began to use him to lead His people. Instead, He began to use him even as a young boy. 


So, it is really not about the age but about the readiness of the vessel God wants to use. That being the case, we should not just be praying for God to raise deliverers and comforters for us in this country; we should also be praying that He will perfect all that concerns those He has chosen for this job, so that they will start working right away. 


But are we going to pray to Him about this? Or are we praying to Him at all about this? Do we even believe in praying to God anymore, especially when we consider that our situation in the country seems to be getting worse instead of getting better? Our Lord Jesus says, “Men ought to always pray and not give up.” Why? It is because there are possibilities that we will be faced with challenges that will want to make us give up on praying to God. (Cf. Luke 18:1)


Now if we give up on praying to God, what are we going to turn to that will be able to save us? Will our wisdom be able to save us? Will violence or lawlessness be able to save us? What about rioting, industrial strike actions and so forth? Can these things save us? 


If they could save us, we would have been saved long ago through them. But they cannot save us and will never be able to save us. The only one that can save us is God. And as our Lord Jesus says, if we will not give up on praying to Him, we will surely see His salvation. That is because He never puts off the prayers of His people but always acts quickly on their behalf. And the only way they will eventually see and enjoy the fruit of what He is doing for them is if they do not give up on Him and turn to the weapons of the flesh, which are nothing really.


So, don't give up on praying to God for this nation, for I too will not give up. And I am sure that at the right time, if we do not faint, we will all see the deliverance of our land and also enjoy it along with all God's holy people who are looking forward to it.    



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BE CONCERNED ABOUT OTHERS TOO 02/06/2024

    

“Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (Phil 2:1NIV)


Why did God so favour Nehemiah that he ended up becoming the governor of Judah for some years? It was because he was genuinely concerned about the welfare of his people. As bible accounts show us, when this man first learnt of the horrible state of the exiles of Judah who had returned to Jerusalem, he mourned, fasted and prayed about their matter. Not only that, he risked his life by meeting the then emperor, Artaxerxes, for permission to go and work for their welfare. And because his heart was right, God caused him to be favored. That was how he became the governor that rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem and that also gave the people the confidence they needed to live and thrive again. (Cf. Neh 1-6)


What, then, is the point of this bible story? It is that there are certain levels of elevation or significance we cannot attain in life, if we are not genuinely interested in the welfare of others. We read in the bible of how God used Moses to deliver the children of Israel from that house of bondage, Egypt. Why? Why was he the one chosen by God for the job? It was because he was genuinely interested in the welfare of his people, the Israelites.


Truly, this man did not initially know the right way to go about securing their independence. So, he ended up becoming a murderer. However, everything he did at that time, even in his ignorance, he did because he truly cared about his people and wanted to set them free to live in their own land and to eat the fruit of their own labour. And when God saw that he had learnt and become mature enough to handle the job, He came to him and equipped him with all that he would need to get the job done. And that was how he became one of the greatest prophets of all times. (Cf. Ex 2-3)


In like manner, if we too want God to elevate us to heights that are beyond even our own contemplation, if we want Him to greatly increase us in significance in life, we must rid ourselves of every form of selfishness and begin to take genuine interest in the lives of others around us. That is because it is usually those who are genuinely interested in the welfare of others that God reveals the solutions to their problems to.


Why are many of our elected leaders today clueless about the problems of their people? For the most part, it is because they are not genuinely interested in their welfare. If they are genuinely interested in their welfare, they will not sit still and watch them suffer or live in misery and pains in life. If they are genuinely interested in their welfare, they will not fold their arms and watch them destroy themselves through reckless, foolish and irresponsible lifestyles. Instead, they will subject themselves to serious thinking, consultations and even prayers, if they believe in God, in order to see how to make life better, safer and more rewarding for them. And it is as they do this that God will begin to open their eyes to see what steps to take to accomplish their missions and objectives, even if they do not believe in Him.


You can, then, see why we have nations of the world whose leaders do not know the Lord or are not religious at all that are yet living in prosperity and affluence. You can also see why we have scientists who do not know the Lord at all coming up with great inventions and discoveries that are making life better and safer for us all. These people love and care about the welfare of others around them. Some of them are even willing to risk their lives and everything they have to seek the welfare of others. 


Therefore, God is not ashamed or reluctant to bless them with ideas and secrets that could turn their world around. And He can do the same with us too. Yes, He can continually overwhelm us with ideas and secrets that will solve most of the basic problems of our homes, neighbourhoods, offices, religious assemblies and even nation as a whole, if we will take the words of Paul to us in our opening bible text seriously. What does he say to us? He says, “Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Who among us does He say this to? All of us! Who among us should look out for the interests of others as well and not just his own interests? All of us!


But are we going to begin to do this? Are we going to begin to show genuine interest in the welfare of others in our lives and all around us instead of thinking and working for our own good alone? If we will begin to do so, then, God also will begin to equip us with the wisdom, understanding, knowledge, influence, power and resources that we need to take good care of them for Him. And before we know it, our lives will have increased immeasurably in goodness and significance, so much so that the top will be the only place that can accommodate us.



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THE RELEVANCE OF MODERATION 01/06/2024


“If you find honey, eat just enough — too much of it, and you will vomit. Seldom set foot in your neighbor's house — too much of you, and he will hate you.” (Prov 25:16-17NIV)


Years ago, as a boy in the primary school, I once fell terribly ill and had to be on drugs for some weeks. But instead for me to be getting better, I was only getting weaker and duller. It was so bad that I would sleep for most part of the school period. And when my teacher brought this to my father’s notice, he got really worried about it. Eventually, he went back to find out from the clinic where I had been treated and given medications what could be wrong. It was then he found out that he had been giving me an overdose of the medications. And if he had been a little late in finding out what he was doing wrong, the case would have ended differently.


Now what is the point of my story? It is that something that is meant to accomplish some good may end up accomplishing something bad, if it is not handled moderately. And it is this same point that Solomon is making in our opening bible text. According to him, as tasty and medicinal as honey can be, it is very little of it that our bodies can handle at a time. But if we ignore this fact and begin to drink it as one would drink water, it would not be long before we get into trouble. Then something that is supposed to heal us will end up endangering our lives. The same thing is applicable to salt and several other things that are available for our use.


Therefore, in using the things of this life, we must always pursue moderation. Yes, the Scripture says everything God created is good and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving (1Tim 4:4). However, if we do not know the right dose of these good things that God has created and use them accordingly, we will surely get ourselves in trouble. It does not matter whether it is food, water, drink, dress, sleep or even money that we are dealing with. As long as we do not use it moderately, it will lose its goodness and become evil in our hands, a channel through which Satan can afflict us. 


How, then, do you know that you are being immoderate or excessive in the way you are using things that are good and not bad in themselves? First, when through your use of something that is good, you endanger your life or others’ lives, there is a tendency that you are being excessive in your use of it. Second, when through your use of something good, people start seeing you as irresponsible, you may be certain that you are already being excessive. So, as you use the good things God has placed at your disposal, be careful to always use them in ways that they will not endanger you or others or make you appear irresponsible to those who care about you. 


Also, as Solomon further points out in our opening text, as important as it is to be friendly with our neighbours and to know how they are faring, it is not every time they will want us around them. Even if we think they need us, they may not think so. And if we are not discerning about this and be moderate in our dealings with them, we may end up unduly intruding or interfering with their lives and affairs. Then we may get to see what we should not see about them or get to access information or resources belonging to them that they don’t want us to have access to. And this may get them to become irritated about us or it may give room for them to begin to despise or disregard us.


Therefore, in handling our relationships, we must also and always seek to be moderate. Know when the visitation should end. Know when the chatting should end. Know where the quizzing should end. Master the art of getting to know how much of you people really want in their lives. Remember that even God usually does not come into people’s lives and affairs without first knocking and waiting for them to respond, even though He is the creator and owner of every one of us. And when He comes into our lives, He will still only move to the degree that we permit Him. Learn from God, then, and don’t unduly insert yourself into anyone’s life. (Cf. Rev 3:20)


Now someone may ask, “How do I know that I am already becoming excessive in my dealings with others?” First, when your dealings with them is making you irresponsible in any area of your life, preventing you from doing what you ought to do or paying attention to what you ought to pay attention to, your presence in their lives is becoming excessive. Second, when your dealings with them is making them irresponsible in any area of their lives, hindering them from being busy with what they ought to be busy with or resting when they ought to be resting, your presence in their lives is becoming immoderate.


Then when you can see that your presence in people’s lives or with them makes them uncomfortable or exposes you to things about them that you should know or are not qualified to be part of, know that it is becoming too much or excessive. So, you need to excuse yourself. Otherwise, as I said before, they may end up being the one that will excuse you. And the disgrace or shame that will accompany that may be too much for you to bear. 


My prayer is that you will not be disgraced by those who are meant to honour you or ruined through anything God has given for your good. But you too must learn and master the art of moderation in life. The benefits are just too immense to ignore. Cheers!


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RECOGNISE THE OPPORTUNITIES THEY PRESENT 31/05/2024


“And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.” (Philippians 1:14NIV) 


That was Paul’s testimony to the Philippians about his time in the prison. According to him, because of what he was doing with his time in the prison, other brethren who heard about it became excited the more to share the gospel and reach out to others. That means, right from the prison, Paul was still influencing the people of God. He did not diminish in relevance in the kingdom. He did not diminish in influence in the kingdom. Why? He would not waste his time in the prison on nonsense. Instead, he redeemed the time. He took advantage of the opportunities that his circumstances presented to him to remain useful in the kingdom of God. 


Now this is the way we too must learn to live, recognising and utilising for good the opportunities that the circumstances of our lives present to us, regardless of how horrible those circumstances may be. What I am saying is that instead of wallowing in anxiety and in shame, instead of complaining, griping or grumbling, we are to open our eyes to see what opportunities our circumstances present to us that we can take advantage of, for the glory of God, for our good and for the good of others. 


In the fourth of chapter of this book to the Philippians, Paul says something else very striking when writing his closing greetings. He says from verse 21, “Greet all God’s people in Christ Jesus. The brothers and sisters who are with me send greetings. All God’s people here send you greetings, especially those who belong to Caesar’s household.” (Philippians 4:21-22NIV) 


Consider that. A church was birthed in that place because Paul redeemed the time and would not waste the opportunities that his prison circumstances presented to him. Now I wouldn’t know what your own circumstances are. But if you will open your eyes to see the opportunities they present to you and make the most of them, great things will happen to the glory of God.



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PRAY ALSO 30/05/2024


“Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:36NIV) 


Observe that the Lord does not just say we are to be on the watch; He also tells us to pray. So, being on the watch is not enough; we must also learn to pray. 


See, without offering prayers for strength and protection in these last days, we don’t stand a chance. The fact that you are on the watch does not mean you will be able to escape what is coming. If the Lord does not keep you in these last days, you will not be safe. That is the truth. If He does not protect you against the evil, the corruption, the pollution of these last days, there is no way you are going to escape these things. 


For example, wasn’t Joseph watchful in the house of Potiphar? Was he not careful enough with his master’s wife? Read the account in Genesis 39, and you will see that the young man was very careful in relating to that woman. He made sure that he avoided her the moment he found out that the woman was interested in him. He saw that the woman wanted to lure him into adultery. So he began to avoid her. But as careful as he was, there was a day he fell into that woman’s trap. And if the Lord had not given him the wisdom to do the right thing with the woman, there was no way he would have escaped her snare. Nevertheless, he ended up in jail because of her evil scheme. 


So, it does not matter how watchful or determined you are, if the Lord Himself does not support or sustain you in these last days, you will not be sustained. This has nothing to do with human might, power or intelligence. We do not have any competence of our own to survive in these last days. 


It is no wonder, then, that Paul says to us in 2Corinthians, chapter 3, from verse 4, “Such confidence we have through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God.” (NIV) Look at that. It is not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves; our competence comes from God. 


Then he goes on to say in verse 6, “He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant – not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” (2Corinthians 3:6NIV) Our competence comes from God. Our ability to survive in these last days comes from God. So, we have to be drawing from Him. We have to draw from Him the wisdom we require to survive in these last days. We have to draw from Him the courage we require to survive in these last days. We have to draw from Him the strength to say ‘No’ to wickedness and worldly passions in these last days. We have to draw from Him the protection we need from all the calamities and plagues of these last days. We need to draw from Him the protection we need from the wickedness and the hostility of wicked people in these last days. We need to draw from Him all that we need to survive in these last days.


How, then, do we draw from Him? One major way to do so is through prayers. So, the Lord tells us directly in that text to pray that we will be able to escape all that is about to happen on the face of the earth. That means more terrible things are about to happen here on earth. And the only one that can keep us in the midst of them all is God Himself. So, we have to continually reach out for Him. We have to continually express our dependence on Him. We must realise that we cannot do this on our own. It is not by might nor by power but by His Spirit. Our intelligence cannot do this for us. Our will power cannot work here.


Let me remind you that Peter was determined not to deny his Lord. Read the account in the gospels yourself, and you will see that he was not lying when he said that he was ready to die with or for the Lord. But when the time came for him to prove himself, was he able to do so? No! The courage to do so was not there. The strength to do so was not there. 


But the Lord had told him and the other apostles to pray that they would not fall into temptation. He did not just tell them to watch; He also told them to pray that they may not fall into temptation. But did they pray? No! The accounts show us that they were too tired to pray – they were sleepy. So, when the time of their testing came, they could not stand. Yes, they loved the Lord and did not want to deny Him. But all of them ended up running away from Him.


Now I am sure you don’t want to end up running away from the truth or the practice of righteousness in these last days. And if you don’t want to end up running away from the practice of righteousness, if you don’t want to end up falling into the trap of greed, immorality and bitterness in these last days, then, you must pray.


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BAD THINGS DON’T HAVE TO HAPPEN 29/05/2024


“This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: he was preparing swarms of locusts after the king’s share had been harvested and just as the late crops were coming up. When they had stripped the land clean, I cried out, ‘Sovereign Lord, forgive! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!’ So the Lord relented. ‘This will not happen,’ the Lord said. This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: the Sovereign Lord was calling for judgment by fire: it dried up the great deep and devoured the land. Then I cried out, ‘Sovereign Lord, I beg you, stop! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!’ So the Lord relented. ‘This will not happen either,’ the Sovereign Lord said.” (Amos 7:1-6NIV)

Amos narrates for us here two visions he saw about the Lord’s judgment that was coming on the nation of Israel. One of them was supposed to result in famine in the land. And when he saw this, he prayed to God, saying, “Sovereign Lord, please forgive. How can Jacob survive this?” In other words, he prayed to God not to allow what he had seen from happening. And how did God respond to that? He relented and said, “This will not happen.”

Then the second thing Amos saw was that fire devoured the land. That means there would be disasters that would devour the land. And when he saw this too, he did not say, “Well, since this is what God wants, let it be.” No, he did not say that. Instead, he prayed to God saying, “I beg you, Sovereign Lord, stop. This is too much for us. We cannot bear it. Please, forgive.” And God answered him and forgave the land.

Unfortunately, we have today people who, when they see visions of bad things that are meant to happen, will desire that those things happen. Why? It is that they may appear before people as real prophets. People like such are like Prophet Jonah and are not functioning with the mind of Christ.

Bad things don’t have to happen, even if we have seen them in a vision. We can intercede that they will not happen. Of course, there is an extent to which our intercession can work for people, if they will not turn away from their wickedness. But at least, we can intercede for them.

Amos interceded for the land twice. And God answered him those two times. We too can intercede for our land, our people or anyone that God has revealed bad things to us about. Then we can also proceed to warn them. In fact, we are to warn them, unless God has instructed us not to say anything to them. But if He has not warned us not to warn people about the things He has shown us concerning them, bad things that may happen them, we need to warn them so that they may turn from their wicked ways and be saved. And that is because bad things don’t have to happen to anyone, if they can be avoided.


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Stop denying to truth 28/05/2024


“But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such "wisdom" does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, of the devil. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.” (James 3:14-16NIV)


What is James saying here? First, it is that we can habour wrong and destructive things in our hearts and lives. Second, it is that when we are confronted with the truth about that which is wrong in our lives, we may begin to boast about it. So, you can be boasting about the fact that you are selfish, proud, stingy, wasteful or inconsiderate.


I have seen people boast about such things before. Yes, I have seen people pride themselves in the fact that they are harsh, proud, selfish and inconsiderate in the way they treat others. And it is such people that condemn those who humble themselves before the word of God in handling their lives and refer to them as foolish.


The third thing James says in that text is that we can deny the presence of wrong things in our lives. And when we deny something, we cannot repent of it. If we will not agree that we have been selfish, proud, inconsiderate or stingy in life, we will not see anything to repent of. This, of course, is very dangerous for us. That is because it can lead to a sudden destruction of our lives and even of everything dear to us.


See, those who are boasting about the wrong things they are doing can still be helped. They can still be brought to repentance. But those who are self-deceived, those who will not admit that they are missing it in their lives or homes and need to repent cannot be helped much. And such people, if care is not taken, may end up being utterly and suddenly destroyed by the devil, something that I pray will never happen to you or your home.


So, if you have gone off at a tangent in your life, you need to admit it and stop boasting about it or denying the truth. The wisdom that you think you possess that is making you to act like that, as James tells us, is unspiritual and satanic. Yes, your friends or colleagues at work or even family members may be praising you for being so smart in the way you are handling your life. But the word of God says you are operating by a worldly, unspiritual and satanic wisdom. And soon enough, that wisdom will fill your life with confusion and destruction. It is only a matter of time.


What, then, do you want? Do you want to continue to operate with that satanic wisdom and ruin your life, your home and perhaps your faith as well? Or do you want to embrace the wisdom of God and live humbly before His word?



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LOVE IN DEMONSTRATION 27/05/2024


“Isaac brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah, and he married Rebekah. So she became his wife, and he loved her; and Isaac was comforted after his mother's death.” (Gen 24:67NIV) 


Can you see what is said about Isaac in that text? He loved his wife the moment he married her, even though he was not the one that chose her – she was chosen for him. And because he loved her, they went on to have a great home together. They did not divorce themselves, neither did they end up becoming polygamous.


Did they not have challenges? They did! For instance, we are told this about them in the bible: 


“Isaac prayed to the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was barren. The LORD answered his prayer, and his wife Rebekah became pregnant.” (Gen 25:21-22NIV)


Did you see that? Just as Sarah, Isaac’s mother, was barren for years, his own wife too was barren for almost twenty years. And how did her husband respond to that? Did he go Rebekah’s maid, as his father, Abraham did? No! Did he find another lovely woman in town to marry? No! Or did he put the blame on Rebekah or on his father’s servant who brought her for him to marry? No! Or did he go for a divorce and send her back home to her people? No! 


What did he do, instead? He prayed for her. Why? It was because he loved her. And did God answer his prayer or not? He did.


Think about it. Isaac did not even go looking for any prophet to pray for them (and I doubt if there was any at the time). And he did not send his wife out to start looking for the solution to her barrenness. It is a shame that this what some men often do when there is a challenge in their homes. They will put the blame on their wives and send her to go alone in finding a solution to the challenge.


This is why5 most of our prayer mountains today are never in shortage of married women or mothers seeking solutions alone to their family problems. Where are the men? If you ever find them on any prayer mountain, they are most likely there for themselves, their health, their jobs, their businesses, their ministries or their future partners. It is usually about them. And to say the fact, it is highly irresponsible of us to be acting like that.


This is also why many women have become preys of sorcerers, wizards, herbalists and false prophets. For example, I was once told of a woman that was looking for the fruit of the womb and of how she met a prophet about the matter. And what did he tell her? He told her that he must sleep with her for at least seven times, if I remember correctly, before she would be able to conceive. That’s outrageous, right? But it did happen. And even though what the man asked of that woman was totally ungodly, she yielded and allowed him to sleep with her for a number of times before the matter was exposed.


Why did that happen to that woman? First, it was because she was desperate. Second, it was because her husband left her all alone to solve their common problem. Perhaps you too have been acting like that, often leaving your wife to solve your family challenges alone. Apart from the fact that you are acting irresponsibly, your love for your wife is questionable. If you love her, then, you will never abandon her to face any issue of her life or of your home all by herself.


Isaac did not leave Rebekah to face her barrenness alone. Instead, he took it on himself to pray for her. And God answered. That is love in demonstration. And that is what is also expected of all of us that are men. We are to love her wives and to demonstrate this love both in word and deed.




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ACCEPT YOUR PRAYER RESPONSIBILITIES 26/05/2024


“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving…” (Col 4:2NKJV) 


This is an instruction and not a suggestion. And it is an instruction each of us must personalise. In other words, I must see it as a personal instruction to me. You too must see it as a personal instruction to you. Therefore, we must keep on praying, morning, noon, evening and night. And we must be earnest, serious about it.


It is unfortunate that many of God's people are not serious about prayer. And you can easily detect this from the way they pray in their church meetings. When they are not being frightened or manipulated to pray, most of them will not be serious with it. So, you may find them dozing off, getting distracted with things that do not concern them or just pacing the floor and getting lost in thought. Why? They have not accepted their prayer responsibilities. And that way, they will often have to rely on other people's prayers for them. 


But however committed others may be in praying for us, there are things their prayers will never be able to take care of in our lives. For example, before the Lord went to the cross, He plainly told Peter that He had prayed for him so that his faith would not eventually fail. And God did answer that prayer. But Peter himself needed to pray for himself so that he would not fall into temptation. And did he do that? No! So, he fell into temptation. Yes, the Lord's prayer for him got him restored. But it could not keep him from falling in the first place. (Cf. Luke 22:31-62)


In like manner, it is not every time that the prayers of your pastor, parents, siblings, friends, colleagues at work or brethren in church will be enough to get you out of certain troubles of life or to get you elevated to certain positions in life. So, you must accept your own prayer responsibilities and be serious in carrying them out. Otherwise, a day may come when, as Peter wept profusely after denying Jesus three times in a row, you too may have to weep over certain matters of your life that you have failed to pray about.


But then, as I pointed out before, accepting your prayer responsibilities does not mean you have to abandon life and every other thing just pray. Rather, it means that your heart is continually reaching out for God for all that you need and is always ready to break out in prayers. So, don't abandon your responsibilities at work (if you have not taken due permission to do so) or at home (if you have not gotten your partner or a trusted person to stand in for you) in order to pray. That will amount to doing the right thing at the wrong time. And it will come with consequences, something you will have observed, if you have been doing so.



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EVERYONE MUST BE INVOLVED  25/05/2024


“Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children, those nursing at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room and the bride her chamber. Let the priests, who minister before the LORD, weep between the temple porch and the altar. Let them say, 'Spare your people, O LORD. Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, 'Where is their God?''” (Joel 2:15-17NIV)


Those were the words spoken by Prophet Joel to the people of Judah, as he watched them wallowing in misery and pains. And what was he asking them to do? He was asking them to blow the trumpet and call everyone together to fast and pray for the land. Otherwise, things should be expected to go from bad to worse for them.


As we see in other passages of Joel's book of prophecy, God, at the time He said these things, was judging the land. So, food, joy, gladness and peace had been cut off from them. But God was not done at all. He was still bringing in a large and mighty army that would ravage the land and make it desolate. And that is what happens when people persist in wickedness and will not pay attention to their experience of God's judgment. Things can only get worse and worse for them. (Cf. Joel 1&2)


But things don't have to get worse for us, regardless of what degree of God's judgment we are faced with in our lives or in our land. All we need is to humble ourselves and turn to God for mercy. And that was what Joel was calling his people to do. He said to them, “Look, don't let us wait until the unbelieving nations around us begin to say, 'Where is your God?' before we turn to Him for salvation. Instead, let us call out everybody, old and young, priests and prophets, leaders and followers, husbands and wives, grooms and brides, mothers and sucklings, and ask God to spare us and take away our shame.”


In like manner, this is what we should be doing in Nigeria now, especially those of us who know God and who are called by the name of Jesus. We should be calling out to one another in our various assemblies and getting everyone involved in praying to God for the salvation of our nation. As clearly shown in Scriptures, all that we are experiencing now is nothing but the judgment of God on our land for our widespread injustice, bloodshed and idolatry, even in the church. What I am saying is that we don't need any prophet to tell us that all that we are now witnessing in form of banditry, terrorism, kidnapping and a breakdown of social order in every part of our country are signs of God's judgment on our land. (Cf. Ezekiel 14:12-21; Amos 4:6-13)


And if we do not want things to get worse for us, as they usually get worse for nations and peoples that refuse to pay attention to what God is saying to them, those of us who know the Lord need to begin to get every one of us involved in praying for the land. This is not a job for the leaders of our congregations alone; it is a job involving every one of us. So, instead of gathering together to offer selfish prayers or to promote things that do not edify us or our nation, we should cultivate the culture of remembering our nation in prayers in each of our prayer meetings. (Cf. Leviticus 26:13-39; Deut 28:15-68) 


Now is there any assurance that when we pray like this God will answer? Yes! In fact, the next thing Joel says after his call to prayer in the verses in our opening bible text is this: “Then the LORD will be jealous for his land and take pity on his people. The LORD will reply to them 'I am sending you grain, new wine and oil, enough to satisfy you fully; never again will I make you an object of scorn to the nations.'” (Joel 2:18-19NIV) 


Did you see that? If we will pray to God to save our land, He will show us mercy and speak tenderly to us. Why? It is because He does not delight in anybody's destruction but in their salvation. This, in fact, is why He has severally instructed us in His word to take praying for our nation and all men seriously. So, beginning at our family levels, let us start to get everyone involved in praying to God for the salvation of our nation. Then, instead for things to go from bad to worse for us, God will show us mercy and redeem us.


Have a lovely day.


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EVERYONE MUST BE INVOLVED  25/05/2024


“Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children, those nursing at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room and the bride her chamber. Let the priests, who minister before the LORD, weep between the temple porch and the altar. Let them say, 'Spare your people, O LORD. Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, 'Where is their God?''” (Joel 2:15-17NIV)


Those were the words spoken by Prophet Joel to the people of Judah, as he watched them wallowing in misery and pains. And what was he asking them to do? He was asking them to blow the trumpet and call everyone together to fast and pray for the land. Otherwise, things should be expected to go from bad to worse for them.


As we see in other passages of Joel's book of prophecy, God, at the time He said these things, was judging the land. So, food, joy, gladness and peace had been cut off from them. But God was not done at all. He was still bringing in a large and mighty army that would ravage the land and make it desolate. And that is what happens when people persist in wickedness and will not pay attention to their experience of God's judgment. Things can only get worse and worse for them. (Cf. Joel 1&2)


But things don't have to get worse for us, regardless of what degree of God's judgment we are faced with in our lives or in our land. All we need is to humble ourselves and turn to God for mercy. And that was what Joel was calling his people to do. He said to them, “Look, don't let us wait until the unbelieving nations around us begin to say, 'Where is your God?' before we turn to Him for salvation. Instead, let us call out everybody, old and young, priests and prophets, leaders and followers, husbands and wives, grooms and brides, mothers and sucklings, and ask God to spare us and take away our shame.”


In like manner, this is what we should be doing in Nigeria now, especially those of us who know God and who are called by the name of Jesus. We should be calling out to one another in our various assemblies and getting everyone involved in praying to God for the salvation of our nation. As clearly shown in Scriptures, all that we are experiencing now is nothing but the judgment of God on our land for our widespread injustice, bloodshed and idolatry, even in the church. What I am saying is that we don't need any prophet to tell us that all that we are now witnessing in form of banditry, terrorism, kidnapping and a breakdown of social order in every part of our country are signs of God's judgment on our land. (Cf. Ezekiel 14:12-21; Amos 4:6-13)


And if we do not want things to get worse for us, as they usually get worse for nations and peoples that refuse to pay attention to what God is saying to them, those of us who know the Lord need to begin to get every one of us involved in praying for the land. This is not a job for the leaders of our congregations alone; it is a job involving every one of us. So, instead of gathering together to offer selfish prayers or to promote things that do not edify us or our nation, we should cultivate the culture of remembering our nation in prayers in each of our prayer meetings. (Cf. Leviticus 26:13-39; Deut 28:15-68) 


Now is there any assurance that when we pray like this God will answer? Yes! In fact, the next thing Joel says after his call to prayer in the verses in our opening bible text is this: “Then the LORD will be jealous for his land and take pity on his people. The LORD will reply to them 'I am sending you grain, new wine and oil, enough to satisfy you fully; never again will I make you an object of scorn to the nations.'” (Joel 2:18-19NIV) 


Did you see that? If we will pray to God to save our land, He will show us mercy and speak tenderly to us. Why? It is because He does not delight in anybody's destruction but in their salvation. This, in fact, is why He has severally instructed us in His word to take praying for our nation and all men seriously. So, beginning at our family levels, let us start to get everyone involved in praying to God for the salvation of our nation. Then, instead for things to go from bad to worse for us, God will show us mercy and redeem us.


Have a lovely day.


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A HARD PART OF LEADERSHIP  24/05/2024


“For I told him that I would judge his family forever because of the sin he knew about; his sons made themselves contemptible, and he failed to restrain them.” (1Sam 3:13NIV)


Eli, as we are shown in the bible, was a true man of God and a good man. And though his sons were children of Belial, he was not a partaker of their sins and wickedness. However, because he was the chief priest of Israel at that time, it was on him to deal with those sons of his that were desecrating the priesthood God had given them. 


As God told Samuel in our opening bible text, Eli was supposed to have restrained them by sacking them. But he did not do that. And because he did not do so, God decided to punish him and his entire family line along with them. What a shame! (Cf. 1Sam 2:27-36)


Now what is the point of this? It is simply that if we are occupying any leadership position, we need to know that God is expecting us to use our authority to ensure that those under us are not misbehaving and getting away with it. Otherwise, we ourselves may end up being punished along with them, even though we are not partners with them in their error or misbehaviour.


To say the fact, one of the hardest jobs of leadership is restraining people, putting in place measures that ensure that people don’t behave as they please or get away with wrongdoings. That is because it can make you a lifetime enemy of those involved. It can make people label you will all kinds of derogatory names or titles or make them begin to seek your downfall or death. 


But any home that will remain sane and healthy and not destroy itself must have over it parents that are bold and tough enough to restrain their children and prevent them from always acting as they please. And any society, organisation or institution that does not want to collapse without warning must have over it leaders that are bold and firm enough to restrain those in it and keep them from doing as they please. In like manner, any church of God in which the brethren will remain sound and healthy spiritually must have as leaders men and women that are bold and tough enough to restrain the members and let them know that they cannot be doing as they please and be ignored.


As we know from Scriptures, human beings are naturally delinquent. That means they are naturally prone to do evil. Therefore, if there is no one to restrain them, they will, just as in the days of Noah, continue to do as they please until they destroy themselves. All of this is why God has established for us all kinds of human and spiritual authorities, starting from our homes. And He has placed swords in the hands of those occupying these positions of authority to keep us in line and prevent us from destroying ourselves and everyone around us. (Cf. Rom 13:1-5)


Unfortunately, in many situations and for various reasons, those bearing these swords don’t use them to restrain evil. Instead, they, like Aaron of bible days, tend to succumb to the pressure of those under them and allow them to have their way (Ex 32). You can see why governments of several nations of the world today are now passing laws in favour of homosexuality, lesbianism and other related nonsense and why some of them are actually overlooking injustice and insecurity in many ways. 


But what such leaders they don’t realise is that when those appointed by God to restrain evil refuse to do so, a time will come when He Himself will step in to do the needful, as in the case of Eli. And where this is the case, even the authorities involved will not be spared on the day of judgment.


So, wherever you are occupying a leadership position, remember that an essential part of your job is to restrain evil. Yes, it is a hard one, perhaps the hardest part of your job. But it has to be done, if you don’t want to end up paying for crimes you have not committed. So, get the job done or resign.



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YOU MAY NOT GET ALONG WELL 23/05/2024


“I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to agree with each other in the Lord. Yes, and I ask you, loyal yokefellow, help these women who have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.” (Phil 4:2-3NIV)


How does Paul describe Euodia and Syntyche in those verses? He describes them as women whose names are in the book of life and who have also fought hard at his side for the cause of the gospel. That means they were both great believers and ministers of the gospel. Yet they could not agree with each other to work together in the assembly. What was the cause of their disagreement? We are not told. But we are told that they could not walk together as one and so needed someone to help them deal with whatever was causing disagreement between them. 


So, you can see that great and wonderful believers may not get along well in the same assembly, at work, in school or neighbourhood. Is that to say that they are enemies? Not necessarily so! But for some reasons they may not just be able to cooperate to do anything tangible together. In fact, it may be that God does not want them to function in the same space. And that will be because He has different fields of operation for them. 


Remember that there was a time that Abraham and Lot had to part ways. Was there any disagreement between the two men? No! But there were constant frictions between their workers. And that was because the space they were both operating in had become too small for them. So, the only wise thing for them to do at the time was to go their separate ways. Yes, how Lot handled the choice of where they both went was not commendable. But that is not to say that they were wrong to go their separate ways at the time. They were right. (Cf. Gen 13)


Why am I sharing all this with you? It is to let you know that the fact that someone is a child of God does not mean that you can do things together. Your peculiarities may not just make room for the two of you to be able to work together, do business together or marry each other and get along. Sometimes, it may even be the people in your lives that will make it hard for you to do things together without stepping on each other’s toes. 


Now where that is the case, don’t force things. In other words, where it is not absolutely necessary or compulsory that you do things together, make sure you don’t force yourself into doing things with them. That will reduce your chances of quarrelling with each other. (Cf. Rom 12:18)


Second, where you have to do things together, be willing to respect their peculiarities and promote their interests, as long as doing so does not set you against the will of God (Phil 2:4). Respecting and advancing other people’s interests does not make a fool of you. Rather, it shows that you are loaded with humility and peace. And if you do that long enough, you may just earn the respect and trust of the person involved and build a loving and lasting relationship. But if that still won’t work, you will need to do your best to stay out of trouble and let God have His way. 


Have a pleasant day.



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FULFILLING YOUR WOMANHOOD 22/05/2024


“Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.” (Prov 31:11-12NIV) 


Did you what is said about the husband of the virtuous woman? It is said that her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. Why? It is because she is devoted to bringing him good and not harm, as long as she lives. 


What this means is that God expects you to go into your marriage, as a woman, to do your husband good and not harm, all the days of your life. He expects you to go into that marriage and perfect your man. Yes, He expects that you will go into that marriage and lawfully use everything you have, knowledge, wisdom, strength, love, affection, resources, influence, education and so forth, to complete your man, to supply whatever is lacking in his life, so that he may be a total man. And it is as you devote yourself to doing that, that your real womanhood is expressed and perfected.


Am I saying that a woman cannot be a real person without going into a love or marriage relationship? No! With or without marriage, a woman is a real and complete person. And from what our Lord Jesus Christ Himself teaches us, when we come into His eternal kingdom, nobody will be getting married to anybody. That is because we all are going to be like the angels and there will no longer be what we call sex distinctions. (Cf. Matt 22:23-32)


So, it is only in this world that we have to deal with sex distinctions. And if a woman should decide not to marry at all, nothing is wrong with that. She can still fulfil her humanity without getting married, regardless of her field of study or vocation. That is because being human, as we are told in the Scriptures, is all about living in reverence fear of God and keeping His word (Ecc 12:13). Anyone who lives on this basis, then, is the real human being.


However, when we are talking about womanhood, it can only be well and fully realised and expressed in a marriage relationship. I know that is contrary to the thinking or philosophy of our feminist groups and foundations. But what they think about this matter does not really count. What counts is what God says about it. And God is saying that if you want to stand out as a real woman, not just as another human being, then, you have to be in a marriage relationship and function appropriately there.


Again, do not misrepresent me or miss my point in this matter. I am not against feminist groups or movements. In fact, I commend them for the bold steps they are taking in defending the rights of the woman in a world that is twisted in its understanding of how women should be treated. However, in dealing with love or marriage matters and how women should handle them, they are often working against God’s revelation and will for the marriage institution. That is why they hardly succeed in solving marital problems. Instead, they often compound them. And if you, as a woman, want to have a great home, as far as marriage matters are concerned, you should listen only to God and not to men.


Well, my point is that if you want to realise your womanhood, it can only happen in a marriage relationship. But it won’t happen automatically, if you do not know what is expected of you in your marriage and act accordingly. And one of the things expected of you in your marriage is that you support and do your husband good with everything you have got, all the days of your life. So, this is a life time commitment. And if you are not ready for it, you should forget about marriage.



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PRAYER IS A DUTY.  21/05/2024


“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” (Colossians 4:2NIV) 


Why would you devote yourself to prayer? It is because it is a duty. We devote ourselves to our families, for we know that we are responsible for them. We devote ourselves as students to our studies, for we know it is our duty to do so. Otherwise, we will not do well. Also, in business, we devote ourselves to those things that will make our businesses flourish. Why? It is our duty to do so. And if we do not do it, no one else will do it for us. Then, if you want to do well in your workplace and rise there, you devote yourself to doing the right thing there – you handle every task diligently. 


In like manner, we must see prayer as a duty. Therefore, our attitude towards it must be that of devotion. And it is those who devote themselves to prayer in this sense that we can refer to as men and women of prayer. In Psalm 109, verse 4, David refers to himself as a man of prayer. Can you also refer to yourself as a man of prayer? Can you refer to yourself as a woman of prayer?


I can refer to myself as a man of prayer. That is because I take my prayer duties very seriously. I take my prayer duties for my family, the church of God and my country very seriously. That is because I have come to know that it will be a sin for me not to do so.


You too must take your prayer duties seriously. You must understand that it is a sin for you not to take them seriously. God is going to hold you responsible for those you are supposed to pray for that you will not pray for and who fail because of this. He will hold you and me responsible for things that fail or get ruined under our watch because we will not pray. 


I know we don’t usually think like this. This is why we hardly take prayer seriously, even in our church meetings. Here is someone who has come for a prayer meeting. Yet he is sleeping all the time. Or he is wandering in his mind. He is not excited or serious about it because he thinks it is the exclusive duty of the preacher to do all the praying or most of the praying. 


But it is your duty to pray. And you must be faithful in doing so. God is not going to reward your irresponsibility in handling prayer. That is why a lot of things are not in place in the lives of many of us. We are irresponsible as far as prayer matters are concerned. And the word of God is telling us today to wake up and be faithful in prayer.


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    THE COST OF REWARDING YOURSELF 20/05/2024


“Why did you not obey the LORD? Why did you pounce on the plunder and do evil in the eyes of the LORD?" (1Sam 15:19NIV)


Who were these words spoken to? It was King Saul. And why were they spoken to him? It was because he disobeyed God's instruction to him. And what was God's instruction to him? It was for him to go and utterly destroy the Amalekites and everything belonging to them. 


Now did he go or not? He actually went, fought the Amalekites and destroyed them. But he did not carry out the Lord's instruction exactly the way he was told. He was supposed to destroy all the Amalekites and everything they had. But he did not do that. The bible says, “He took Agag king of the Amalekites alive, and all his people he totally destroyed with the sword. But Saul and the army spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and lambs — everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.” (1Sam 15:8-9NIV)


Did you see that? First, Saul spared the king of the Amalekites. Why? We are not told. Perhaps the man promised to deliver some hidden wealth to him. We really would not know. What we do know, however, was that he had no authority to spare something God had already sentenced to death.


Second, he and his men were reluctant to destroy the best of the animals of the Amalekites. But they destroyed all the weak and despised ones. Why? Greed! They just could not imagine how they would carry out such a great task, at the risk of their lives and resources, and not get paid or rewarded for it. So, again, they chose to reward themselves with things that God had already marked for destruction. 


But was God not going to reward Saul and his men for this task? He surely was going to reward them. The bible tells us that there is nothing we do for the Lord that will be in vain (1Cor 15:58). In other words, He will surely reward us for everything we do for Him. How is He going to reward us? We will know when He does reward us. And when is He going to reward us? We will also know this when He rewards us. But He will not fail to reward us at the right time and in the right way. (Cf. Gal 6:9)


All we need to do, then, is to patiently wait for Him to reward us for whatever we do for Him. And that was what Saul was supposed to lead his men to do. He was supposed to lead his men to carry out the Lord's instruction to the full and then wait for Him to reward them for their faithfulness. As we see in the bible, several years after this, God gave Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon the task of utterly destroying the city of Tyre. And he did it faithfully. But he got no reward from doing so. Therefore, God decided to reward him with the wealth of Egypt by handing Egypt over to him. Isn't that amazing? It is! (Cf. Ezekiel 29:17-20)


In like manner, God would have rewarded Saul for doing His work faithfully, if he had not chosen to reward himself. But he was obviously ignorant of the fact that God rewards those who are faithful to Him. So, as we are told in our opening bible text, he and his men pounced on some of the animals they were supposed to destroy and rewarded themselves with them. And God responded to that by taking the throne of Israel that He had given him away from him and his family forever. 


Now think about it. Which would Saul consider to be more important, the throne or the few animals of the Amalekites? Evidently, he would take the throne to be more important to him, any day and anytime. But he lost it because he chose to reward himself for the work God had given him instead of patiently waiting for God to reward him. 


In the same vein, we too can lose more than God's reward when we choose to reward ourselves for serving Him instead of waiting for His reward. This is why our Lord Jesus warns us about monetising the things God wants us to freely give to others and also about serving God to win the praise of men (Matt 6:1 & 10:7-8). These things will surely make us lose whatever reward we may have hoped to receive from God. And they can even make us lose more. They can make us lose our health like Gehazi or lose our ministry and lives like Judas Iscariot. Therefore, we need to be watchful so that we don't get ruined by taking for ourselves rewards God has not given to us.




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WE CAN TAKE O

19/05/2024


“Then the officials and all the people said to the priests and the prophets, "This man should not be sentenced to death! He has spoken to us in the name of the LORD our God."” (Jer 26:16NIV)


One of the reasons God's people often shy away from speaking the truth or confronting wickedness where they are is fear of persecution. And there are times indeed that speaking against unrighteousness can be very dangerous. There are times that it could go beyond ordinary threats to real assaults on the lives of those involved. 


For instance, as we are told in the chapter of the book of Jeremiah from which we have taken our opening bible text, there was a prophet of God like this man who also spoke of God's judgment coming upon Jerusalem, her king, her officials and her people. His name was Uriah son of Shemaiah. But King Jehoiakim did not take his prophecy kindly at all. Instead, he sought to kill him. And though the man ran away to Egypt, this wicked king still sent people to go and find him. And when they brought him, he was killed, and his body was disposed as that of any common man. (Cf. Jer 26:20-23)


So, confronting evil can be really dangerous and life-threatening. Yet God wants us to confront it with the truth, especially when we are in a position to do so or when He has sent us to deliver His word against it. And though many come against us to harm us for speaking the truth or for standing for righteousness, we need to learn to entrust ourselves to Him for safe keeping. That is because He is able to raise people to defend and protect us.


See, it is not every time that God employs angelic protection to save His people from enemies of the truth or from wicked and unreasonable people. There are times that it is even those that we consider to be unbelievers that He uses to save them. For example, as we are shown in our opening text, the people that God used in protecting Jeremiah from the religious leaders of the land that wanted to kill him were those who were not religious at all. (Cf. Jer 26:1-15)


Think about it. It was actually the so-called priests and the so-called prophets of the land of Judah that wanted Jeremiah's head. Why? Was it because he was a wicked sinner that deserved nothing but death? No! Rather, it was because he spoke to the land in the name of the Lord, addressing their wickedness and calling them back to repentance. And what could be wrong with calling people back to repentance and warning them against the coming wrath of God? Nothing! But those priests and prophets were offended by that because they themselves were chiefs in practising wickedness in the land.


You are probably familiar with that kind of situation, a situation in which it is the so-called Christians where you are that are calling for your head and persecuting you. Why? It may be because you are confronting their wickedness or because you are exposing their evil. So, they want to get rid of you. And they may not mind how far they have to go in doing so. 


Now that was the situation Jeremiah found himself. He found himself about to be killed because he spoke the truth in the name of the Lord. But just when he felt death was sure, God used the people he least expected Him to use to defend him. He used the government officials of the land, who were probably the most corrupt in the land, to defend him. They all came together as one and said, “No, Jeremiah must not be executed. He has not done anything wrong by speaking the word of the Lord to us. He has only done us good by warning us ahead, so that judgment will not come upon us.” And that was how he was snatched from the mouth of the lions that wanted to devour him.


In like manner, as long as we are ready to stand for His truth where we are, God also is ever ready to raise people, even those that we least expect, to defend us against the hostility and wickedness of men who hate righteousness and love to suppress the truth. But are we ready to stand for the truth and watch God raise all kinds of defenders and protectors for us while doing so? Or are we going to keep standing back and allow wickedness to continue to gain ground where we are, all because we are afraid of men? Which one is it going to be?



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HE WILL EXPOSE THEIR EVIL PLOTS 18/05/2024


“But when the son of Paul's sister heard of this plot, he went into the barracks and told Paul.” (Acts 23:16NIV)


The word of God clearly teaches us to watch how we live in this world. Why? It is because the days we live in are evil days. To say the fact, man’s days here on earth have become evil days right from the day Adam fell into the sin of disobedience in the Garden of Eden. And we see an illustration of this in what happened to Abel through the hands of his own brother, Cain. So, each of us must study to walk with wisdom and with open eyes every new day. Otherwise, we may just end up becoming victims of the schemes of the evil men and women of these evil days. (Cf. Gen 3&4; Eph 5:15-16)


However, even if we are most watchful and careful in our dealings with men, if God does not keep us safe from the schemes of the wicked, we will not be safe. That is why Solomon says unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen or guards can only stay awake to watch over it in vain (Ps 127:1). So, regardless of how careful and watchful we may be in this life, we must never put our trust in our carefulness or watchfulness. Rather, we should put it in God who is able to both expose the plots of the wicked against us and to also keep us safe from them.


For example, Paul experienced God’s salvation in this manner when he was arrested in Jerusalem by the religious leaders of the Jews. They had apprehended him because of the gospel and tried to establish for the Roman authorities that he was indeed a criminal deserving nothing but death. But they were not successful. They only ended up arguing among themselves. So, Paul had to be kept in the barracks by the Roman army commander in the place where he had been arrested. (Cf. Acts 21-23)


Now it was while he was there in the barracks that more than forty Jewish men made a solemn oath to assassinate him. And they informed their religious leaders about how they intended to execute their wicked plot. But God, who was continually watching over Paul, exposed their plot to his nephew, his sister’s son. So, in a very discreet manner, he told him about it. Then the commander that was holding him in his barracks was also informed about it. And that was how he was delivered from traps of those wicked and unreasonable men that were seeking his life.


In like manner, God is able to deliver us too from all those who are secretly plotting to harm or injure us. He is able to expose their evil plots and also make provisions for us to be saved from them. All we need is to continually commit ourselves and all that is ours into His hands, even as we are careful and watchful. And He will make known to us every hidden evil scheme of men’s hearts that is geared towards hurting or destroying us.


As we are also shown in the bible, in the days of Elisha, God always revealed to him all that the king of Aram and his officials were planning, even the things they were planning in this king’s bedroom (2Kings 6:8-12). So, he was able to warn the king of Israel of their plots and keep the nation safe. And that is how things will be for you too. The secret plots of all those who are seeking your destruction and downfall will never be hidden. They will always be exposed. And God will keep you and your whole household safe from all forms of evil both now and forever, in Jesus’ name. Amen.



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WE CAN TAKE OUR STAND AGAINST HIM 17/05/2024


“The Lord said to Satan, ‘Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life.’ So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord and afflicted Job with painful sores from the soles of his feet to the crown of his head.” (Job 2:6-7NIV) 


Notice that Satan went out from the presence of the Lord and afflicted Job. So, it was not God that afflicted him; it was Satan that afflicted him. But he did not see the hand of the devil in what was happening to him. Therefore, instead of resisting him, instead of talking to God about the situation, so that He would destroy the works of the devil in his life, he kept on blaming God for everything. He blamed him for harassing and tormenting, even though he had done nothing wrong.


Now from this we can see that you do not need to do anything wrong for Satan to work in your life. You do not need to be a sinner or a wicked person for him to work in your life. You do not need to do any bad thing for Satan to work in your life. He can afflict anybody. He can attack anybody. Once he has an opportunity to work somewhere, he is going to work there. So, it is on us not to allow him to work. It is on us to take our stand against him. 


Paul tells us in Ephesians 6 to put on the whole armour of God, so that we can stand against the schemes of the devil. So, we really can take our stand against the schemes of the devil. We do not have to allow him to have a free day in our lives. We do not have to allow him to destroy our lives, our homes, our marriages, our children or anything dear to us. We do not have to permit him to keep us in poverty or in misery. We can take our stand against him. 


But if we do not know his schemes or recognise his works, we, as Job did, will accept his works and take it as fate. We will be saying, “Maybe that is how God wants things to be. Maybe He wants me to suffer or die in this situation.” We will be talking like that because we don’t know that the one messing us up is the devil. But he is the one. And we can resist him, as children of God. We can take our stand against him. We just need to recognise his works and how he functions, so that we will not permit him to work in our lives but drive him. 


Remember that James says if we resist the devil, he will flee from us – he will run away from us (James 4:7). But he won’t run away from us, if we do not resist him. Satan has to be shown that we are willing to resist him. He is not going to assume that we will resist him. He will want to devour and ruin us, just to see if we are going to resist him or not. And this is why we must not be ignorant of his works. We need to know when he is working, so that we can take our stand against him.




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A PLACE OF RESPONSIBILITIES 16/05/2024


“What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, “Son, go and work today in the vineyard.” “I will not,” he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, “I will sir,” but he did not go. Which of the two did what his father wanted? “The first,” they answered. Jesus said to them, ‘Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you.” (Matthew 21:28-31NIV)



Here the Lord is showing us that the kingdom of God is a place of responsibilities. There is work for everyone to do in it. In fact, we are told in Ephesians 2 that God created us to do the good works He has prepared in advance for us to do. And as we fellowship with Him day by day, He reveals these good works He wants us to do to us and also expects us to carry them out. These works may be ones to be done in our homes, neighbourhoods, offices, towns, cities and so forth. But they are works that God has prepared in advance for us to do. And we must be willing and devoted to doing them. 



So, we are to ask, “What are my responsibilities in the church and to the world?” Don’t just come around for church meetings to listen to instructions being given to you week after week or to have others pray for you, counsel you or give to you. You too need to find out what your own responsibilities are in the kingdom. Each of us has a responsibility in the kingdom. Each of us has something to contribute to the overall growth of the body of Christ. Each of us has something to contribute to the overall usefulness of the body. 


Look at how Paul puts this in Ephesians 4, from verse 11:


“So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does it work.” (Ephesians 4:11-16NIV)


Observe here that one of the reasons we have pastors, evangelists, apostles and prophets is that they may train God’s people for works of service. They are not just to instruct us in the will of God. They are also to train us for works of service. They are to build us up to be responsible children of God. One of the ways they do this is by giving us responsibilities. They may show us all kinds of things we are to do in our lives, homes, workplaces and so forth. But they can’t always be there to watch us do these things. By giving us specific responsibilities in the church and watch us how to do them, they, however, can tell whether we are taking seriously all the instructions they are giving us in the church or not.


Then observe that Paul says the body of Christ grows as each part does its work. So, if you are not carrying out your own duty in the kingdom, you are limiting the growth of the entire body of Christ. If you are not doing anything in the church, you are limiting the overall growth and usefulness of the body of Christ. And we cannot be certain that you are taking seriously all the things we have been teaching you about how to live to please God. But when we give you responsibilities and you carry them out, then, we can have some guarantee that you will put into practice other things we are teaching you.


This, of course, is not always the situation. I know there are times people show themselves responsible in their various assemblies, when they are not acting responsibly in other areas of their lives. But the truth is that it is those who show themselves responsible in whatever task they are given in church that often show themselves responsible in other areas of their lives as well. Those who don’t take up any task at all in the church don’t often show themselves responsible in Christian living. 


Therefore, if you have no responsibility that you are carrying out in the church, and you are not ready to take up any, it is most likely that you are not living in the will of God where you are.




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THEY WILL RECOGNISE HIS GRACE IN YOUR LIFE 15/05/2024


“As far those who were held in high esteem – whatever they were makes no difference to me; God does not show favouritism – they added nothing to my message. On the contrary, they recognised that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been to the circumcised. For God, who was at work in Peter as an apostle to the circumcised, was also at work in me as an apostle to the Gentiles. James, Cephas and John, those esteemed as pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognised the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the circumcised.” (Galatians 2:6-9NIV)


Paul, here, is talking about how he came to be received by the leading figures of the church in those days, that is, James the brother of the Lord Jesus, Peter and John the brother of James the son of Zebedee. Of course, when Paul became born again, he began to teach the word of God to people almost immediately. That was because he desired to do so; he loved to do so. But that does not mean that he was actually gifted to do so. 


See, that someone loves to do something does not mean that he is actually gifted to do so. Paul loved to preach the word of God. He loved to talk to people about Jesus Christ. His life had been radically changed by the Lord. So, he wanted everybody to know about it.


That, however, does not mean that he was qualified to do so or that he had what it takes to do so. But as he preached, people could tell that he was gifted of God to do so. Yes, of course, the Lord Jesus had told him that He was sending him to the gentiles to preach His word to them. And by sending him like that, it means that the Lord has actually gifted him to preach His word, for the Lord is never going to ask you to go and do something He has not gifted you to do. 


But then, people also had to receive Paul, even though he was gifted and sent by the Lord to proclaim His word. And we see that, in his early days as a believer, there were believers who did not want to have anything to do with him. For instance, the believers in Jerusalem did not want to have anything to do with him until Barnabas came and told them the story of his conversion (Acts 9:26-28). So, it is possible for people not to think you have the spiritual gift you are trying to exercise or not to think you are even a believer. Where that is the case, you will need to be patient. 


Now the apostles that Paul mentions in our opening text recognised that God had actually sent him to go and preach to the gentiles, as Peter had been sent to the Jews. And when they recognised the grace of God in his life, they gave him and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship. That means they acknowledged that God had actually appointed him as an apostle and that he had been given all the gifts that he would require to function as an apostle. 


So, it was not because Paul was moving around to tell people that he had this gift or that gift that he was recognised and acknowledged to be an apostle; rather, it was because other believers, including the leaders in the church at that time, could see the grace of God at work in his life. Therefore, if you do have any spiritual gift, the people of God will see it in your life, as you operate it, and acknowledge that you have it. That is one thing you need to keep in mind in getting to know and understand what spiritual gifts you have.



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A RELEVANT FAITH 14/05/2024


“First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.” (Rom 1:8NIV) 


What is Paul’s testimony about the Roman brethren in our opening text? It is that thier faith is being reported all over the world. In other words, people are discussing their faith in Jesus Christ everywhere. 


But why are people discussing the faith of these brethren? First, it is because of the change they can see in their lives. They can see how they turned away from idol worship, immorality, drunkenness and greed in order to worship God and to wait for His Son Jesus Christ. Also, they can see how they are now doing what natural men find impossible to do – they are living a life of love and a life of righteousness. And these things are so obvious and surprising to everyone that they cannot but talk about them or call one another’s attention to them.


The second reason they are reporting the faith of the Roman brethren is the impact that it is making on their society. People are suddenly realising that there is a new breed of individuals among them that are not morally impotent, deficient or incapacitated. They are seeing that there is a new crop of people that can be trusted with lives, money, properties and so forth, a new crop of people that are constantly full of joy and are peaceable and lovely to be with.



So, wise owners of businesses want them on their team or as their partners. Community leaders who truly care about their people want them among their staff. Slaves want them as their masters. And slave masters who have them don’t want to lose them because of the quality of service they are giving them. In short, these brethren are changing the mind of everybody about life and how to handle it meaningfully. There is, therefore, no way they won’t talk about their faith in Christ Jesus and its impact on their world.


Unfortunately, this is not the case with many of us believers today. People are not reporting our faith at all because they cannot see its relevance. They cannot see any good thing it has done to our own lives or homes, not to talk of our society. We have remained the old persons they used to know, that is, if we have not even become worse. I mean that they cannot see any good change our so-called faith in Christ Jesus has brought about in our lives. So, they don’t consider it something worthy of attention or something worthy of reporting. 


Now why is this the case? It is the case because many of us who profess to be Christians don’t even understand what it means to be a Christian. In other words, we are not even saved at all – we are just church meeting goers. Then many among those of us who have been genuinely saved are not walking in the consciousness of who we are. We are not walking in the consciousness of the fact that we are the salt of the earth and that our lives are supposed to bring healing, preservation and taste to our world (Matt 5:13). So, we live carelessly and thoughtlessly, giving not much attention to how what we say and do affect those in our world. 


But the Lord is now saying to us, as we face this new day, “This ought not to be so. You should not lose your saltiness in the world and allow yourself to be trampled upon, as it is the case with many. So, wake up and be the salt that you really are to your world, taking advantage of my grace. And before you know it, those in your world will begin to see and talk about the relevance of your faith in me.”  


Do have a fabulous day.


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DON’T BE CARRIED AWAY 13/05/2024


“Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position.” (2Peter 3:17-18NIV) 


What is Peter’s main instruction to us here? It is that we should be on our guard against the errors of lawless men. Now who are lawless people? These are individuals who do not care at all about righteousness, godliness, justice, peace or anything that glorifies God. They are individuals who make evil look good and good look evil. I am talking about people who live their lives to communicate the idea those who are truthful, upright, godly and selfless are foolish and will never enjoy life or amount to anything in it and that it is those who are crafty, selfish, immoral and insincere that will make the most of life. 


But is it true that righteousness does not pay much or at all and that it is wickedness that offers great rewards in this world? No, it is not true. Yes, it may look like wicked, immoral and unrighteous people are the ones getting the good things of life and occupying the most important places. And it may look like such people are always getting away with their wickedness, selfishness and abundance of immorality. But it only looks so; it is not so in reality. So, don’t be fooled or deceived by the façade their lives are communicating.


Read Psalm 73, and you will see what its writer has to say about being envious of the wicked. As he pointed out, at some point in his life, he began to compare his life with those of the wicked people around him who, in their wickedness and arrogance, were increasing in wealth, power and fame. So, discouragement set into his life, and he began to feel that his devotion to God and His righteousness was all in vain. (Cf. Ps 73:2-14)


But thanks to God, who led this Psalmist into His sanctuary and there showed him the truth about a life lived in wickedness. Then he saw for himself that no matter how prosperous and powerful a wicked person may be in their wickedness in this world, eternal miseries and pains will be their ultimate reward. He also saw that this earth has nothing that compares to what God intends to be and give to those who trust and love Him. So, he says, “Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Ps 73:25-26NIV) 


Now you too need to see God as the strength of your heart and as your profit in this world. Otherwise, before you know it, you will have been carried away by the error of the lawless people around you, who will continually entice you and give you the impression that you are missing something by not following them in their foolish path. And remember that Peter tells us that if we do not guard ourselves against the errors of these people, we will fall from our secure position in Christ. 


So, it is actually possible for people to fall from the place of God’s grace and favour and ruin their lives, if they would not guard their hearts against the ungodliness in the world. And my prayer is that you will not fall away or lose your place in God’s scheme of things. But you too must take care and see to it that your heart is not enticed to follow ungodly men in their path of destruction.


Do have a great day.



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BE FAITHFUL IN YOUR SERVICE TO HIM 12/05/2024


My word for you today is that you to take your service to God seriously and handle it wholeheartedly. Why? First, it is so that God can use it to accomplish His purpose in the lives of men. When we do not serve God wholeheartedly and according to His will, we may taper with the results He wants to get with whatever we are doing. And that will not be for our good or the good of those we are serving on His behalf.


For example, though the Jews of the earthly days of our Lord Jesus had priests, teachers of the law, Pharisees and Sadducees, who were ministering to them, the Lord still said that they were like sheep without a shepherd. In other words, the ministry of their religious leaders was not achieving the purpose of God in their lives. Why? Was it because something was wrong with them? No! Rather, it was because most of these religious leaders of theirs were hypocrites, whose hearts were not truly devoted to serving God according to His will. (Cf. Matt 9:35-36; Matt 23)


Now if we compare their ministry to that of the first seven deacons of the church, we see a great difference. That is because even though these deacons were not ordained to preach but to handle the sharing of food among God’s people, their ministry still resulted in the spread of the word of God and the growth of the church. Why? It was because they ministered with hearts that were faithful to God. (Cf. Acts 6:1-7)


So, if we are faithful in our service to God, He is able to use whatever we are doing, however insignificant it may seem to men, to accomplish His good purpose in people’s lives. But if we are not faithful, as I said before, we will most likely hinder or destroy His work. 


Yes, of course, there are times that God ignores people’s unfaithfulness in serving Him and still accomplishes His purpose through what they are doing. For example, there was a time that Moses and Aaron disobeyed Him and still got results. In other words, in spite of the disobedience of these men, God still performed a miracle for His people through what they did. But did they get rewarded for their unfaithfulness? No! Instead, they got severely punished for it. (Cf. Num 20:1-13)


Also, when we look at the life of Samson, we see that one main lesson it teaches us is that it is possible to be unfaithful to God in our lives or in our service to Him and still be seeing Him at work in what we are doing. But then, as we also see through His life’s story, if we continue to act in unfaithfulness in our lives or service to God, there will certainly come a time in which He will have to allow us to face the consequences of our unfaithfulness, which may be too much for us to handle. (Cf. Judges 13-16)


So, if you are unfaithful in your service to God, know that there will be consequences. One of them is that you won’t be receiving any reward or praise from Him for whatever you are doing. And the forms other consequences may take is not something I or anyone else can talk about. But they may be very grievous. 


All of this is why you need to watch the quality of service you are giving to God. Remember that He cannot be deceived or mocked. That means what you sow is what you will get. If you sow deception, unfaithfulness or hypocrisy in your service to Him, the fruit you will reap will show it. And if you sow faithfulness, diligence and love in your service to Him, the fruit you will reap will also show it. (Cf. Ps 18:25-26; Gal 6:7-8)


So, stop lying to yourself about your service to God and face the truth about its quality. Yes, examine and test the quality of your service to God in the light of His word in order that you may do what is needful. Otherwise, you will have only yourself to blame, when He begins to treat you as your service deserves. I pray that you will not end up losing your reward for serving Him or get severely punished for not serving Him appropriately, in Jesus’ name. Amen. 


Do have a fabulous day.


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REMEMBER AND PRAISE THE GIVER OF TRUE INDEPENDENCE 11/05/2024


“When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the Lord your God for the good land he has given you. Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day.” (Deut 8:10-11NIV)


“You may say to yourself, 'My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.' But remember the Lord you God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth..." (Deut 8:17-18NIV)


Even though Moses was the human instrument that led these people out of Egypt to go into Canaan, he never asked the people to praise him or to remember him as the source of their independence or prosperity. Rather, he told them, as we see in our opening bible texts, to remember God and to give all the credit to Him. And that was because he knew that he did not possess any power of his own to give anybody independence or to make anybody stay independent. Only God possesses that sort of power. And only He should be continually remembered and praised by men for their independence or freedom. 


Unfortunately, most countries of the world that are enjoying political and economic independence today, including Nigeria, have totally forgotten the God that gave them independence. Some of them don't even see Him as the source of their independence at all. So, instead of praising Him and pursuing His righteousness, they praise men and make laws that please themselves. 


No wonder many of them are still slaves of other countries, even though they claim to be independent. And unless they repent and remember to give God's due place to Him in their everyday affairs, individually and collectively, they will never be truly free.


Now am I saying that it is wrong to acknowledge all those people that were instrumental to our independence as a nation? No! For instance, people like Herbert Macaulay, Tafawa Balewa, Nnamdi Azikwe, Obafemi Awolowo and so forth played significant roles in securing independence for Nigeria. And we should rightly acknowledge them for what they did. But we must not forget that they all were mere human instruments used by God. Without Him, making us independent, all their efforts could not have amount to anything.


So, they, with whatever great ideas they may have had, are not ones we should make the big factor in experiencing true independence as a nation; the one that should take that place is God. And if, in fact, they, with all the other leaders we have had since our independence, had continually seen, praised and proclaimed God as the source of our independence and every good thing we may hope to enjoy in our country, we would by now have been greatly exalted in the midst of all the other nations of the world. 


In any case, it is not too late for us to retrace our steps, individually and collectively. It is not too late to remember God and give Him the place that is due Him in our lives, homes, communities, organizations and so forth. And this, of course, will be the beginning of our deliverance into a true experience of independence.



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STRENGTH TO GET WEALTH  10/05/2024


“But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth…” (Deut 8:18NIV)


Many often wonder why the time, effort, diligence, devotion, intelligence and resources they are putting into life are not producing for them the kind of results or wealth they believe they need to enjoy life, as they will love to. And what they are failing to note is that, as important as smartness, education, intelligence, devotion and diligence are in life, they are not sufficient on their own to give anybody wealth or good success. The only one with the ability to do that is God. 


So, as we see in our opening text, when He brought His people, Israel, out of Egypt, one of the things He highlighted for them through Moses was that He was the one responsible for their wealth. He said to them, “When your flocks and herds grow large and your silver and gold increase and all that you have is multiplied, don't say to yourself, 'My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.' Instead, remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth.” (Cf. Deut 8:10-18)


And why did God say that to them? First, it was so that they would learn to be thankful to Him for their wealth. And thanking God for our wealth is especially necessary when we consider the fact that there are many hard working, smart, diligent, godly and honest people around us today that are not wealthy at all but poor. So, if anyone has legitimately acquired wealth, it will be foolish of him to just assume that it is because he has been smart, hard working, diligent, godly or tenacious that he has become wealthy. If he will look around, he will see that there are many people that are better than him in every way who are still not wealthy.


Remember that even Solomon, who was one of the richest people that ever lived on the face of the earth, says in his book on life, “…The fastest runner does not always win the race, the strongest soldier does not always win the battle, the wisest does not always have food, the smartest does not always become wealthy, and the talented one does not always receive praise. Time and chance happen to everyone.” (Eccl 9:11NCV) Can you see that? Events of life can turn against even the brightest and strongest of men and frustrate them, so that nothing becomes of their hard labour in life. So, anyone who finds his intelligence, hard work, skills, diligence, devotion, honesty and tenacity tremendously rewarding and profitable ought to learn to appreciate God. Otherwise he may never enjoy his success or wealth (Luke 12:16-21).


Another reason God showed those Israelites that He was the one responsible for their wealth was that they may not abuse it but be generous with it. As long as you see yourself as the one responsible for your wealth, you can decide to use it as you please. But if you see God as the one responsible for your wealth, then, you will want to learn from Him how to use it to please Him. 


In any case, my point all along is that the one that gives people the ability to make wealth legitimately is God. And He can make this ability abundantly available for you too, if you are willing to recognise Him, cast all your cares upon Him and also learn from Him. Of course, He may not give you that kind of wealth that will make people know you all over the world. And He may not give you the kind of wealth you desire to have overnight. But if you will patiently follow and learn from Him, He will certainly give you rest from all your fruitless labour and bring you to that place in life where, in all things and at all times, you will have all that you need and can be generous on all occasions. (Cf. Is 1:19; Matt 11:28-29; 2Cor 9:8-11)


Have a lovely day.



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WHAT POSITION SHOULD WE TAKE WHEN PRAYING? 09/05/2024


Among the questions people often ask about prayer is 'What is the best position to take when praying?' Now this question, of course, looks somewhat ridiculous. But it is not at all, for all kinds of misleading teachings have gone out on it. 


Some, for instance, have said the right thing to do when praying is to kneel. Why? It is because we are praying before the King of kings, Lord of lords, Ancient of days and so forth. And that sounds great, doesn't it? It does! But there is nowhere we are told in the Scriptures that people must kneel before they can pray to God or before their prayers can be answered. Or do you know any such place in the bible?


Also, there are those that are saying the proper thing to do when praying is to stand. Why? For them, standing to pray before God is a symbol of respect for Him and also a sign of seriousness. So, they get furious when they see people praying on their seats, for they see them as being disrespectful to God. And sometimes they also get irritated when they see people praying on their knees, for they see them as capable of dozing off while praying.


But again, there is nowhere we are told in the Scriptures that people must stand or take a particular position before they can pray to God and receive from Him. Yes, under the Old Covenant, the Jews were taught to face Jerusalem when praying, for it was the city of God and the abode of His temple among them. And that idea did not even originate from God but from King Solomon. (Cf. 1Kings 8:22-53; Dan 6:10) 


So, nowhere are God's people taught in Scriptures to always take a particular position when praying in order for God to answer them. We can take any position we are most comfortable with when praying. And what I mean by that is that when praying, we are to take a position in which we will truly pray and not do something else. That is because, from what I see in the Scriptures, it is not the position we take when praying that will determine how God answers us; rather, it is the heart with which we are praying to Him. 


Go through the Scriptures yourself, and you will see that the saints of old and even our Lord Jesus Christ did not have any particular position that they took when praying to God. They just prayed to Him according to the burdens of their hearts and as they were led by the Spirit, and He heard them. 


For example, Moses, when praying for mercy for the children of Israel because of their sin of idolatry, fell prostrate before the Lord for forty days and forty nights, and He answered Him (Deut 9:18-19). But when you read the Scriptures, you will see that he did not do that all the time. Also, when you read about Joshua and the day he asked the Lord to alter the normal daily routines of the sun and the moon, you will not see any emphasis on the position that he took in praying. He just said what he said, and God answered him. (Cf. Jos 10:12-14)


In addition, read about David, and you will see that he did not have any stereotyped position that he took when praying to God. There were times he fell prostate before Him to pray. And there was even a time that all he did was sit before the Lord to pray. Did God answer him or not? He did. (Cf. 2Sam 7:18-29 &12:16; 1Chro 17:16-27 & 21:16-17)


Look also at our Lord Jesus Christ. When He was teaching the people how to pray, did He insist on any particular position they must take when praying? No! And why? It was because He Himself did not have any fixed position that He took when praying. At least, we know from the Scriptures that He had no trouble praying, regardless of His position, whether sitting or standing or lying on the ground. It all depended on the burden of His heart and where He was when He needed to pray. (Cf. Matt 26:39; John 11:41-42 & 17)  


So, don't let anybody make you feel your prayers are being unanswered because you will not take certain positions while praying. The disciples of old were sitting when the Holy Spirit came upon them on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4). So, God does not need you to stand up or kneel down or lie down before He answers your prayers. All He needs is for your prayers to be heartfelt and to be in accordance with His will, and He will answer you. (Cf. James 4:3 & 5:16; 1John 5:14-15)


But then, it is important that you do not get unruly or rebellious about all this. It is okay for you to take whatever prayer position you like when praying on your own. But once you are together with other believers, you must, out of reverence for Christ, respect the wish of whoever is leading you in prayers on matters of what position to take or not to take when praying. Otherwise, you may just be laying a foundation for rebellion, bitterness or discord among God's people. And that will never be to your advantage. So be wise.


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IT CAN BE TAKEN FROM YOU 08/05/2024


One of the truths that are made plain to us in the bible is that no man can attain any position of authority in life except it is given to him from heaven, that is, by God. Yes, people often help themselves in one way or the other to occupy some offices in life. But the reason they are still able to succeed is that God wants them to get there. If He does not want a man in a position, it does not matter how highly favoured he is among men or how formidable the forces behind him are, he will never get there. And examples of this abound both in the bible and in all of human history. (Cf. John 3:27 & 19:10-11; Rom 13:1-2)


Similarly, no one can keep himself in any position, if God no longer wants him there. You know it is not uncommon to find people who allow certain positions they occupy in life to so possess them that they begin to see themselves as irreplaceable or unchallengeable. That explains why many in leadership positions in our country today often act recklessly and arrogantly, without any form of regard for those that they are leading.


Now what individuals like such don't understand is that they are not sovereign. No leader or ruler anywhere is sovereign. And even though there are certain individuals that are referred to as sovereign in their domains, their power is limited and can be taken away from them anytime by the One who gave it to them. That is why each of us must be very careful how we use whatever position, place, authority or power that God has given to us.


In Daniel 4:31-33, for example, we have God's verdict against that terrible and mighty King, Nebuchadnezzar. At that time, he was a king of kings and lord of lords, according to the bible. But he did not become all that by himself; God made him what he was. Unfortunately, at some point during this man's reign, he began to see himself as all in all; he began to think of himself as the master of his own destiny. And this began to affect his rule and attitude towards his subjects. He began to act as he pleased. (Cf. Dan 2:37-38)


Nevertheless, God, being a merciful Creator, sent warnings to him through a dream and also provided one of his subjects, Daniel, to interpret the dream to him. And His aim was to show this mighty king that he was not sovereign. The kingdom and all the beautiful things that he was ruling over did not belong to him but to God. And God was ready to take that kingdom and everything in it away from him until he acknowledged this fact. This was why Daniel, that righteous man, admonished this king to repent of his sins and be kind to the oppressed, so that he may receive God's mercy and be spared from the impending doom. And that is one thing most of our preachers won't do today. (Cf. Dan 4:1-27)


But sadly, like most men, Nebuchadnezzar would not listen to sound counsel. Instead, he continued to rule in arrogance and self-importance. And as a result of that, what God had decreed against him eventually came to fulfilment. He was afflicted with insanity, and the kingdom was taken away from him. Then all his pomposity and arrogant display of power disappeared into thin air. And he was not restored to his place of honour until he acknowledged God and glorified Him as the one with all the power. (Cf. Dan 4:28-37)


Now King Nebuchadnezzar was highly favoured of God to be restored in that manner. And that was largely because he did not waste the privilege that he was given to repent. Some persons, however, because of their stubbornness were never restored to their previous positions of honour or strength – they were either killed or forever banished. (Cf. 1Sam 2:12-36; 2Chro 16; Dan 5) 


In any case, all of this is why you and I also need to watch the way we are using the present positions God has placed us, regardless of how insignificant they may seem. If we are abusing our powers, oppressing and hurting people, and have not yet been punished for doing so, we must understand that we are simply enjoying some days of grace that have been given for our repentance. But those days of grace will someday be over (2Pet 3:9; Rev 2:20-23). Then God will step in and put us where we really belong, a place of shame and disgrace (Prov 18:12 &29:23; James 4:6-7; 1Pet 5:5-6). 


But my earnest prayer is that you will not wait until disgrace and shame come upon you before you repent of every form of abuse and misuse of your place of authority or power. So, think carefully now and start acting wisely. May God's mercy overflow towards you.


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HE WILL NOT GRANT OUR REQUESTS 07/05/2024

“'Why have we fasted,' they say, 'and you have not seen it? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you have not noticed?' Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please and exploit all your workers. Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife, and in striking each other with wicked fists. You cannot fast as you do today and expect your voice to be heard on high.” (Isa 58:3-4NIV) 


Look at that. Even though those people were praying and fasting to God about their legitimate needs, they were missing it in their relationships. On the one hand, they were praying to God for help and, on the other hand, they were exploiting, fighting and destroying others. And God says, “That will never work. If you want me to grant your requests, then, you have to show me that you will not use the things I give you to destroy others but to bless them.” (Cf. Is 58:5-14)


Now don't we also do similar things? We want God to bless us with all kinds of things, and rightly so. But it is already clear what we are going to do with the things we are asking of Him, if He should give them to us. We will not use them to glorify Him; rather, we will simply use them to hurt and harm others all the more. And God, because He loves those that we want to harm too, will not allow that to happen. In other words, He will not grant our requests.


So, we must understand that God is not only concerned about granting our prayer requests; He is also concerned about what granting those requests will do to others. If by granting our requests, God will be unjustly ruining the lives of others, He will not grant them. 


Why? That is because He is not only God to us; He is also God to everyone else in the world. Therefore, He is responsible for their well-being as well, just as He is responsible for ours. If we, then, keep this in mind, there are requests we will never again make of Him – there are prayers we will never again offer to Him.


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YOU CAN ACCESS IT OR STOP ITS FLOW 06/05/2024


One of the things we are shown in Scriptures is that even though God is all powerful and there is nothing impossible for him, we can limit His power in our lives. How is that possible? Shouldn't God be able to do anything He likes anytime He wants? Yes, God does have the power to do anything He likes anytime He wants. But God does not use His power anyhow. Instead, He uses His power according to His character, which has been adequately described in Scriptures. 


For example, it is not in God's nature to force people to receive Him or to receive whatever He is offering them. Therefore, when His Son, Jesus Christ, came to His own people, the Jews, and they would not receive Him, He did not force Himself on them. Instead, He said to them, “Look, your house is left to you desolate. For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, 'Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.'” (Matt 23:38-39NIV)


Did you see that? When His own people would not accept Him, He just left them desolate. And it is the same thing that is still happening in the world today. Wherever people will not accept Jesus as their Lord, even though they have been presented with diverse opportunities to accept Him and His gift of eternal life, they will be left desolate. That means they will be left to be ruined by the things that are seeking to destroy them.


Now we see an illustration of this once when Jesus visited His hometown. The people there did not warmly receive Him as other people had received Him in other places He had gone to minister. Instead, they ridiculed and insulted Him. Therefore, Mark, in his own record of this situation, says, “He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And he was amazed at their lack of faith.” (Mark 6:5-6NIV) 


Think about that. Jesus could not do any miracle in His Hometown. But people used to say that there is nothing Jesus cannot do. How come He could not do any miracle in His Hometown? That means He left many of the people that were ill, deformed and possessed of the devil in the conditions that He had met them. Why? Was it because He had no power to heal and save them? No! He went there in the fullness of God's power. But their unbelief, which manifested in their ridiculing of Him, stopped the power of God from flowing to them and from working in their lives.


In the same vein, if, for any reason, we too begin to despise God or His servants sent to us, the power of God will not flow to us. In fact, Jesus tells us that the power of God can flow back to the one that God wants to use to communicate it to us, if we do not receive it. Look at how He puts it: “When you enter a house, first say, 'Peace to this house.' If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; if not, it will return to you.” (Luke 10:5-6NIV) 


Did you see that? The power of God can flow right back to the one transporting it, if the person that is supposed to receive and experience or enjoy it will not have it. Yet this same power can be accessed from God through any of His servants by anyone who is ready to have it, if the person will reach out in faith to receive it. That was exactly what happened in the case of the woman with the issue of blood that was healed by touching the hem of Jesus' cloth. (Cf. Mark 5:25-34)


According to the bible, that woman had told herself that if she could just touch the hem of Jesus' garment, she would be well. And when she did, power flowed out from Jesus to her and she was instantly made whole. Interestingly, even Jesus could not stop the power from flowing to her. So, you can see that all by ourselves we can access God's power for our healing, salvation and prosperity, if we will demonstrate our faith in Him. And that is because His power is always and instantly available for all those who believe in Him (Eph 1:19).  


Which is it going to be, then? Are we going to be taking advantage of God's power for the transformation of our lives through prayer and a faithful declaration of His word or are we going to be hindering the flow of His power into our lives and situations through unbelief, pride or the practice of wickedness? My prayer, again, is that your heart will be rid of anything that is keeping you from fully accessing and enjoying God's indescribable power in your life and affairs, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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ACCIDENTS SOMETIMES HAPPEN 05/05/2024


“But if without hostility someone suddenly shoves another or throws something at him unintentionally or, without seeing him, drops a stone on him that could kill him, and he dies, then since he was not his enemy and he did not intend to harm him, the assembly must judge between him and the avenger of blood according to these regulations. The assembly must protect the one accused of murder from the avenger of blood and send him back to the city of refuge to which he fled. He must stay there until the death of the high priest, who was anointed with the holy oil.” (Num 35:22-25NIV)


From what we see in our opening bible text, it is clear that even God acknowledges the fact that accidents can happen in this life, whether to good people or bad people. We don’t want them to happen. We don’t like them. But sometimes they happen.


Now though God has the power to stop any kind of accident from happening, He does not always prevent accidents from happening. Why? We will never know the reasons for these, if He does not reveal them to us. That being the case, we must always be careful in the way we use our bodies and the things of this life. We must also not keep quiet about the carelessness or recklessness of the people around us in handling life matters or resources. Otherwise, their activities may result in accidents. And they may not be the only victims of such accidents. We or (and) others with them may become victims as well.


You can then see why Solomon says this to us: “Whoever digs a pit may fall into it; whoever breaks through a wall may be bitten by a snake. Whoever quarries stones may be injured by them; whoever splits logs may be endangered by them.” (Eccl 10:8-9NIV) Did you see that? We ourselves can be victims of our own activities through carelessness or recklessness. So, in all that we do, we must function with safety in mind. 


That means if, for example, we know that we are not well trained or qualified to do something, we should stay away from it, especially if there is no one to monitor or supervise us. And if we have an animal, a facility, an equipment or a system that can accidentally hurt us or others or destroy things, we should put safety barriers, equipment or signs around it that will warn others about it or keep them safe from it. 


However, as we also understand through our opening bible text, even when we are most careful, accidents can still occur. An animal we keep may go wild and cause trouble for us or others. An equipment we are using may malfunction, for no machine is a hundred percent efficient, and endanger lives or properties acquired through many years of hard labour. Or an ignorant person may tamper with a system we have set up and cause unexpected trouble. 


Interestingly, even if such things happen, God still expects our society to protect those responsible for them. He does not want us to punish them without first making sure that they did not deliberately cause what happened. And once their innocence is established, they have to be protected, even where a loss of lives is involved. Otherwise, God will hold our nation guilty of bloodshed (Deut 19:5-10). 


Mind you, there are equally times that Satan uses nature or natural things that God created for man’s benefits to cause accidents for us and ruin us. For example, as we are told in the book of Job, one of the things Satan did in attacking him was to cause fire (lightning) to fall from the sky and consume all his sheep and their shepherds, leaving only one man alive to tell the story. That, of course, was an accident, which Job was not responsible for at all. But people were victims of it. And he and the families of those men involved just had to take heart and go on with life. Just think about it. (Cf. Job 1:16)


Well, all of this is why we must never rely on our carefulness at all for the safety of our lives, others’ lives or our properties. Instead, we must always rely on God for it. That is because if He does not keep us and the people and things in our lives or around us safe, we will not be safe. 



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WHEN YOU NEED SPIRITUAL SOLUTIONS 04/05/2024


“The men of the city said to Elisha, "Look, our lord, this town is well situated, as you can see, but the water is bad and the land is unproductive." "Bring me a new bowl," he said, "and put salt in it." So they brought it to him. Then he went out to the spring and threw the salt into it, saying, "This is what the LORD says: 'I have healed this water. Never again will it cause death or make the land unproductive.'" And the water has remained wholesome to this day, according to the word Elisha had spoken.” (2Kings 2:19-22NIV)


Why did the men of Jericho approach Elisha about their city? It was because they sensed that they needed more than natural solutions in solving its problems. As they pointed out to the man of God, this city was well situated. In other words, it was settled in a place where it could attract the people and things that it needed to become great. But it was not great, neither was it about to become great. Why? It was because the water was bad and the land was unproductive.


Now who wants to stay in a place where the water is bad and useless for drinking, cooking, bathing and so forth? That kind of place is unsuitable for healthy living. And who wants to stay in an obviously barren and unproductive land? You will just be wasting your resources and hard labour there.  


Since Jericho, then, was such a place, a place where people’s health was continually being endangered by the water and where their resources and hard work were being wasted, people began to avoid it. So, though it was well situated and could have been a great city, that was not the case with it at all at the time. 


But thankfully, there were still men in that city who believed in what it could become. And these ones also knew that its problem could not be solved in a natural way; it would require supernatural intervention. So, when Prophet Elisha came passing through it, they took that as their opportunity to see it healed. They humbled themselves, went to him and told him their predicament. And in response, the man of God ministered to the land by the Spirit of God and healing and wholeness was brought upon it.


What lesson, then, does this teach us? It is that we too must learn to recognise when the issues we are confronted with require divine solutions or intervention. Yes, by putting the mind God has given us to work, there are problems we are able to readily solve. And He expects us to solve those problem instead of waiting on Him to solve them for us. At least, the reason He has blessed us with a mind to think, learn, understand and evaluate things is that we may use it in dealing with the matters of our lives. So, if we are praying, fasting and waiting on Him in handling matters that He expects us to use our head to fix, we are simply wasting our time. 


However, there are matters that a mere application of human knowledge, understanding and wisdom cannot handle. Such matters need divine solutions. But if we fail to realise or acknowledge this or if we, in our arrogance, think God does not matter at all, then, those problems would not be solved at all. Instead, they will only keep going from bad to worse, regardless of what we do or say.


Now perhaps that is the kind of problem you are confronted with now, a problem that requires divine intervention for it to be handled. You yourself can tell that unless there is a supernatural altering or removal of certain things that are fundamentally wrong with the matter at hand, all that you are doing will never amount to much. Then admit it and seek God’s face about it. And you don’t have to do this all alone. Engage the people of God in your life too for prayer support and spiritual counsel on the matter. And before you know it, there will be a divine release of all that you need to change the situation, whatever it may be, and move from where you are to where you ought to be.


Stay blessed.


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 STOP SOWING THE WRONG SEED 03/05/2024


“Don't be misled; remember that you can't ignore God and get away with it: a man will always reap just the kind of crop he sows! If he sows to please his own wrong desires, he will be planting seeds of evil and he will surely reap a harvest of spiritual decay and death; but if he plants the good things of the Spirit, he will reap the everlasting life that the Holy Spirit gives him.” (Gal 6:7-8TLB)


That is a trustworthy saying, and it is worthy of full acceptance. Whatever we sow is what we will reap. And to say the fact, we have been reaping the fruit of what we have been sowing. I am saying that the chaos, the confusion, the dissension, the oppression, the bitterness, the bloodshed, the hunger, the decay, the weeping and the gnashing of teeth we now see and experience all over our nation are fruits of the wicked and terrible seeds we all have been sowing since our existence as a nation. And if we want this painful cycle of decay and deterioration to end, then, we must stop sowing the wrong seeds.


In the book of Numbers, chapter 25, we are introduced to an incident that took place while the nation of Israel was still wandering in the wilderness. According to the text, the people, while they were staying in Shittim, began to indulge in sexual immorality with Moabite women, something the Lord was utterly against. As a result of that, a plague broke out amidst the people, and it resulted in the death of about twenty-four thousand people. This, of course, brought about national lamentations. The whole assembly gathered before the sanctuary of God in their midst, weeping because of their loss. 


But do you know that their weeping did not stop the plague? No, it didn't. And the reason was that they had not totally stopped sowing the seed of sexual impurity. According to the Scripture, while they were yet weeping, one of their leaders (Zimri) boldly and shamelessly brought into his tent a Midianite woman to sleep with her, right in the presence of Moses and all the people. How then could the plague stop? 


Well, thanks to God that somebody acted immediately and wisely in order to arrest the situation. Phinehas, a grandson of Aaron the High Priest, as it is written, took a spear, followed that shameless man into his tent and killed both him and his partner in sin. And that was what ended the plague. (Cf. Num 21:1-8)


Now what lesson does that teach us? If we too want to stop reaping decay and corruption, as a nation, then all of us must stop sowing the wrong seeds. I mean that you and I must stop sowing seeds of hatred, bitterness, discord, unfaithfulness, apathy and terror wherever we are or find ourselves. And we must instead start planting godly seeds, that is, seeds of faithfulness, diligence, self-control, love, unity, peace and contentment. Then we can expect, through the goodness, mercy and favour of God, to begin to reap joy, peace, prosperity and progress all across our land. And so shall it be, in Jesus' name. Amen.



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BE CONCERNED ABOUT THEM ALSO 02/05/2024


“Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall.” (1Corinthians 8:13NIV) 


What is this text showing me? It is that I must not just be concerned about myself; I must also be concerned about my brethren. I am must be concerned about how the things I do or do not do affect them. If the things I am doing are misleading my brethren or getting them into trouble, I am sinning against them and against the Lord Jesus Christ. 


Now this is a message to believers. So, we are talking about believers sinning against believers and against the Lord Jesus Christ. We are not talking about unbelievers persecuting the church here. Unbelievers can persecute the church because they don’t know any better. They can be hostile to members of the body of Christ because they don’t know any better. They were hostile to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. And so He said to us, “If they persecuted me, you can expect them to persecute you too.” (Cf. John 15:18-21) 


However, if those outside the body of Christ are treating us in a hostile way, should we also be treating ourselves in the same manner? Visit a good number of our government offices today, and you will realise that the so-called believers are the most difficult to deal with. When you enter an office and see someone posing as a believer, you know immediately that you are in for big trouble, for they will make things hard for you. Is it meant to be so? No, it is not. 


Now look at those in secret societies, and you can see the way they treat their members. Their members will commit very serious crimes, and they will find ways to exonerate them. That, of course, is wrong. So we don’t do that. But these fellows are so committed to themselves that they are willing to pervert justice because of their members. When you enter a place and make some signs that they recognise as those of their fraternity, they will find out if you are one of them and immediately take up your case. If it is admission into a school that you want, and you are not qualified for it, they will qualify you for it and bring you in. 


Well, we don’t do that, as I said already. We have not been taught to do such things. But the point we are making is that when you find other believers, who are in need, legitimate needs, don’t ignore them—attend to them. No, don’t abandon them. That is because a day is coming when you will have to give account of the way you have treated them to their Lord, who is also your own Lord. And how will you feel then? What excuse will you give for not treating them right?



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CAUTION OR SUSPICION 01/05/2024


“So Hanun seized David's men, shaved off half of each man's beard, cut off their garments in the middle at the buttocks, and sent them away.” (2Sam 10:4NIV)


Why did Hanun, king of the Ammonites, treat David’s men in the manner described in our opening bible text? He did so because he thought he was being cautious. But was he really being cautious or suspicious? 


As the account shows us, Hanun’s father, Nahash had been a friend of David before he died. And though we are not told how they became friends, we are told that the reason David sent his men to give his condolences to his son, Hanun, was that he was a very kind person to him (2Sam 10:1-2). That, of course, was one of the things that characterised David’s way of life. He was not someone that would forget those who had been good or kind to him. Rather, he was someone that was always seeking them out, so that he could show his gratitude to them in whatever way he could. (Cf. 1Sam 30:26-31; 2Sam 9; 2Sam 19:31-39)


Unfortunately, on this occasion, his kind gesture was totally misrepresented by Hanun, the son of his late friend. And it was misrepresented because the officials with the young man misled him. They sowed a seed of evil suspicions in his heart, even though there was no reason for him to be suspicious. (Cf. 2Sam 10:3) 


David, before that time, had done nothing to Hanun’s country to make him think of him as an enemy. He had been nothing but a good and loyal friend to his father. And even if he had wanted to be cautious, probably because he was not really close to David, all he would have needed to do was to give instructions to his men to watch the activities of his ambassadors. Then their report would have cleared his doubts and prevented him from being unduly suspicious.


But because he was a foolish young man, instead of acting with caution at that time, he acted in evil suspicions and shamelessly maltreated ambassadors of an ally country that only came to sympathise with him for the loss of his father. That, of course, resulted in an unfortunate war between him and the nation of Israel, which was a stronger and more powerful nation. And because of the war he lost his men, his land, his crown and his reputation. How sad! (Cf. 2Sam 10; 1Chro 19:1-20:3)


Well, this story is teaching us one thing, which is that there is a great deal of difference between caution and evil suspicion. To be cautious means that we do not assume that we know what people will do or how they will function under any circumstance, if we do not know them to be true children of God or have not known them for a very long time. Therefore, we do not carelessly let them into our lives or affairs. Instead, we put appropriate boundaries in place in our dealings with them, so that we may, in the course of time, learn how well we can trust them. 


But to be suspicious means to have a feeling that something is wrong or that something may go wrong in our dealings with someone. And is it altogether wrong to have this feeling? No! It all depends on who we have such feelings about, why we have such feelings about them and what we do as a result of such feelings that we have about them.


If someone, as Paul says about himself and his ministry companions, does not have any record of being injurious, manipulative or corrupt in dealing with us or others that we know, we have no reason to be suspicious of them (2Cor 7:2). Otherwise, whatever suspicions we have about them will only be evil suspicions, something that the word of God warns against (1Tim 6:4). 


Then even if we have reasons to be suspicious of someone because we don’t know them well enough, because we have seen them act in some ungodly manner before or because someone gave us some bad news about them, our suspicions should only drive us to be cautious and on guard in dealing with them. We should not allow them to drive us to disgrace or embarrass them when they have not done us any wrong and we have no real proof that they are going to hurt us in any way. Otherwise, our suspicions about them will be nothing but evil suspicions.


Now when we allow evil suspicions to drive us to hurt, disgrace or embarrass others who have done nothing wrong to us, we, like Hanun, may end up having an unnecessary and unfortunate war to fight. And that may forever shut some doors of goodness that could have come to us through them against us. Only God, then, knows how many people have been denied certain measure of His goodness that could have been theirs in life because of these things. They, out of suspicion, treated shamefully or abusively certain individuals who merely wanted to help them or do them good. And they have to live with the sorrow and loss that came with doing so for the rest of their earthly lives.


More so, when we allow evil suspicions to drive us in relating to others, even if our suspicions are right, those watching and who have seen the kind of bad treatment we have given to them may never get to know that our suspicions are right. Therefore, instead of being seen as the victims of those who want to hurt us, we will be seen and treated as the villains. And who knows how terribly that will affect us? Only God knows.


So, yes, be cautious in all your dealings with men. But give no room in your heart for any form of evil suspicion. That is because it can only harm you; it has no good to offer you.



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HIS WORD WILL SUSTAIN YOU 29/04/2024


“The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” (Heb 1:3-4NIV).


Scientists have shown us again and again that there are laws governing this universe. And according to them, it is because of these laws that we are able to live here on earth and thrive. It is because of these laws that we and the things we use are not flying out into the space each time we take a step. It is because of them that the stars are not falling down from the sky and crashing on us. 


But who put these laws in motion? Who gave commands to all the things in the universe, so that they cooperate for our good? It is God. While addressing Job and pointing out his ignorance of many things to him, He asked him this question: “Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, when I said, 'This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt'?” (Job 38:8-11NIV) Why did He ask him this question? Was it because he did not know that it was He who did these things? No! He asked him to draw his attention to the awesomeness of His power in sustaining the entire universe by His word. 


We too need to learn to meditate on the awesomeness of God's power in sustaining the universe all around us. Think about this: the sea, with all its proud waves, will not go beyond the boundaries set by God for it. And that is why, though we are surrounded by oceans, we have not been submerged by them. But remember that in the days of Noah, by one word from God, the floodgates of the heavens were opened and all the boundaries and limits set for the oceans and rivers on earth were removed. And everything on the face of the earth was wiped out. Only Noah, his family and the living creatures that he took into his Ark with him survived. And they survived only because they acted on the word of God. (Cf. Gen 7)


What is the point? It is that this universe is existing and kept in existence by the power of the word of God. And that, in fact, is the point that the writer of the book of Hebrews is communicating to us in our opening text, where he says, “God sustains all things by His powerful word.” In other words, anything that is not standing on the word of God cannot exist or survive.


That being the case, if we want to survive in this world, we must stand on the word of God. As I pointed out before, the only reason Noah and his family survived the flood that wiped out every living thing on the face of the earth in their day was that they stood on the word of God. They believed what God said to them about His coming judgment and also acted on what He told them about the way of salvation. So, they were saved.


But remember that Noah and his family were the minority. They were only eight in number. Yet they were the ones that survived that worldwide flood. So, the majority isn't always right. If the majority is not living on the basis of the word of God, they will not survive the evils of this world, regardless of what measure of wisdom, strength or technology they deploy or employ. 


I want you to know, then, that you, your home, your marriage, your business or anything that is yours will not survive or be sustained in this world because you are with the majority or because you are doing what everybody is doing. Instead, you will be sustained and survive only by taking God's word seriously and acting on it. So, be devoted to taking everything He is saying to us about how to experience life, peace, joy, health, protection and fruitfulness in this dark world seriously and also to acting on it. And though many around you may be losing their minds, losing their homes, losing their lives or collapsing, their experience will not be your experience. That is because the word of God, which you are acting on and standing on, will sustain and preserve you until the day He comes to be glorified in all His holy people.



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HIS WORD WILL SUSTAIN YOU 30/04/2024

REVELATION FOR SAFETY

“When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. "Get up," he said, "take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him." So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: "Out of Egypt I called my son." When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.” (Matt 2:13-17NIV)


Why did Herod give orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem, two years old and under? It was because he wanted to get rid of the boy Jesus at all cost. That, of course, is to show us how wicked and unreasonable some people can be. They don’t care what steps they take or what things they destroy in order to have their desire granted. This man was king already. And he knew that there was no way he could possibly be king forever. Yet when he heard that another king had been born, he could not just take it, even though he knew nothing about the nature or character of the kingdom of this boy-king.


At any rate, he made up his mind to get rid of the boy-king. In fact, as the angel that warned Joseph about this matter pointed out, this wicked king was determined to use all the resources at his disposal to find the boy and to kill him. And when it was clear to him that locating the boy Jesus would be very hard, if not impossible for him, he decided to kill all the boys in Bethlehem, where he had been born, within his age bracket. He did that and succeeded because there was no one in the land powerful enough to withstand or resist him.


Thankfully, God had already warned Joseph in a dream to take the boy Jesus and His mother and leave for another country, Egypt. And he lost no time at all in obeying. Our bible text says that he took the child and his mother that same night and made good their escape. That, of course, was how Jesus was kept alive to fulfil God’s purpose for His life.


What, then, is the point of all this? First, it is that there are times we need specific divine revelations to escape from certain danger or trouble that are bound to destroy us or prevent us from fulfilling God’s purpose for our lives. If it had not been revealed to Joseph what Herod was planning, there was no way he would have known what was coming for his family. And if he had not known what was coming for them, there was no way he would have been able to lead them to safety. So, it is in proper order for us to constantly pray to God to continually fill our hearts with divine revelations for our safety and for the safety of everyone and everything dear to us.


The second point of the story is that innocent people can be victims of circumstances they did not ask for or bring upon themselves. All the boys that were killed by Herod in his attempt to get rid of Jesus knew nothing at all about the matter. They did not ask for Jesus to be born. And they did not ask the wise men that told Herod about his birth to spread the news. Yet they ended up losing their lives and not fulfilling whatever purpose God may have had for them here on earth. What about their families? They too suffered for nothing.


So, don’t think that you need to commit a crime or to be involved in a fight with someone before you can become a victim in this world. You don’t have to do any of these things. You may, for some reasons, unexpectedly become a victim even of crimes you did not commit or fights you did not start or ask for. Therefore, learn to pray that God will always keep you and all that is dear to you from being victims of other people’s problems, errors or bad judgments. And He surely knows how to keep you and also possesses the power to keep you.


Now the last point of that account is that it is not enough to receive divine revelations for our safety or anything else. It is also important that we are prompt to act on it. Joseph was prompt to act on the revelation he received for the safety of his family. So, he was able to save them from destruction. Lot, on the contrary, was not prompt to act on the revelation brought to him by God’s angels about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. He was hesitant. If God had not shown him mercy, his hesitation would have been his doom. And eventually, that hesitation to leave Sodom was what brought destruction upon his wife. (Cf. Gen 19)


So, never think you will be safe or exalted just because you have God’s revelation. If you won’t act on it or be prompt in acting on it, you may end up suffering like one who had no divine revelation at all.


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HIS WORD WILL SUSTAIN YOU 2/04/2024


“The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” (Heb 1:3-4NIV)


Scientists have shown us again and again that there are laws governing this universe. And according to them, it is because of these laws that we are able to live here on earth and thrive. It is because of these laws that we and the things we use are not flying out into the space each time we take a step. It is because of them that the stars are not falling down from the sky and crashing on us. 


But who put these laws in motion? Who gave commands to all the things in the universe, so that they cooperate for our good? It is God. While addressing Job and pointing out his ignorance of many things to him, He asked him this question: “Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, when I said, 'This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt'?” (Job 38:8-11NIV) Why did He ask him this question? Was it because he did not know that it was He who did these things? No! He asked him to draw his attention to the awesomeness of His power in sustaining the entire universe by His word. 


We too need to learn to meditate on the awesomeness of God's power in sustaining the universe all around us. Think about this: the sea, with all its proud waves, will not go beyond the boundaries set by God for it. And that is why, though we are surrounded by oceans, we have not been submerged by them. But remember that in the days of Noah, by one word from God, the floodgates of the heavens were opened and all the boundaries and limits set for the oceans and rivers on earth were removed. And everything on the face of the earth was wiped out. Only Noah, his family and the living creatures that he took into his Ark with him survived. And they survived only because they acted on the word of God. (Cf. Gen 7)


What is the point? It is that this universe is existing and kept in existence by the power of the word of God. And that, in fact, is the point that the writer of the book of Hebrews is communicating to us in our opening text, where he says, “God sustains all things by His powerful word.” In other words, anything that is not standing on the word of God cannot exist or survive.


That being the case, if we want to survive in this world, we must stand on the word of God. As I pointed out before, the only reason Noah and his family survived the flood that wiped out every living thing on the face of the earth in their day was that they stood on the word of God. They believed what God said to them about His coming judgment and also acted on what He told them about the way of salvation. So, they were saved.


But remember that Noah and his family were the minority. They were only eight in number. Yet they were the ones that survived that worldwide flood. So, the majority isn't always right. If the majority is not living on the basis of the word of God, they will not survive the evils of this world, regardless of what measure of wisdom, strength or technology they deploy or employ. 


I want you to know, then, that you, your home, your marriage, your business or anything that is yours will not survive or be sustained in this world because you are with the majority or because you are doing what everybody is doing. Instead, you will be sustained and survive only by taking God's word seriously and acting on it. So, be devoted to taking everything He is saying to us about how to experience life, peace, joy, health, protection and fruitfulness in this dark world seriously and also to acting on it. And though many around you may be losing their minds, losing their homes, losing their lives or collapsing, their experience will not be your experience. That is because the word of God, which you are acting on and standing on, will sustain and preserve you until the day He comes to be glorified in all His holy people.



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HIS WORD WILL SUSTAIN YOU 2/04/2024


“The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” (Heb 1:3-4NIV)


Scientists have shown us again and again that there are laws governing this universe. And according to them, it is because of these laws that we are able to live here on earth and thrive. It is because of these laws that we and the things we use are not flying out into the space each time we take a step. It is because of them that the stars are not falling down from the sky and crashing on us. 


But who put these laws in motion? Who gave commands to all the things in the universe, so that they cooperate for our good? It is God. While addressing Job and pointing out his ignorance of many things to him, He asked him this question: “Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, when I said, 'This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt'?” (Job 38:8-11NIV) Why did He ask him this question? Was it because he did not know that it was He who did these things? No! He asked him to draw his attention to the awesomeness of His power in sustaining the entire universe by His word. 


We too need to learn to meditate on the awesomeness of God's power in sustaining the universe all around us. Think about this: the sea, with all its proud waves, will not go beyond the boundaries set by God for it. And that is why, though we are surrounded by oceans, we have not been submerged by them. But remember that in the days of Noah, by one word from God, the floodgates of the heavens were opened and all the boundaries and limits set for the oceans and rivers on earth were removed. And everything on the face of the earth was wiped out. Only Noah, his family and the living creatures that he took into his Ark with him survived. And they survived only because they acted on the word of God. (Cf. Gen 7)


What is the point? It is that this universe is existing and kept in existence by the power of the word of God. And that, in fact, is the point that the writer of the book of Hebrews is communicating to us in our opening text, where he says, “God sustains all things by His powerful word.” In other words, anything that is not standing on the word of God cannot exist or survive.


That being the case, if we want to survive in this world, we must stand on the word of God. As I pointed out before, the only reason Noah and his family survived the flood that wiped out every living thing on the face of the earth in their day was that they stood on the word of God. They believed what God said to them about His coming judgment and also acted on what He told them about the way of salvation. So, they were saved.


But remember that Noah and his family were the minority. They were only eight in number. Yet they were the ones that survived that worldwide flood. So, the majority isn't always right. If the majority is not living on the basis of the word of God, they will not survive the evils of this world, regardless of what measure of wisdom, strength or technology they deploy or employ. 


I want you to know, then, that you, your home, your marriage, your business or anything that is yours will not survive or be sustained in this world because you are with the majority or because you are doing what everybody is doing. Instead, you will be sustained and survive only by taking God's word seriously and acting on it. So, be devoted to taking everything He is saying to us about how to experience life, peace, joy, health, protection and fruitfulness in this dark world seriously and also to acting on it. And though many around you may be losing their minds, losing their homes, losing their lives or collapsing, their experience will not be your experience. That is because the word of God, which you are acting on and standing on, will sustain and preserve you until the day He comes to be glorified in all His holy people.



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LEARN TO GIVE THANKS TO GOD IN EVERY SITUATION 28/04/2024


 “So Noah came out, together with his sons and his wife and his sons' wives. All the animals and all the creatures that move along the ground and all the birds — everything that moves on the earth — came out of the ark, one kind after another. Then Noah built an altar to the LORD and, taking some of all the clean animals and clean birds, he sacrificed burnt offerings on it.” (Gen 8:18-20NIV)


What was the first thing Noah did when he came out of the Ark alive and well? He built an altar of thanksgiving to God. That means this man acknowledged that God was the reason he, his family members and all the animals and birds with them were alive and well after about eleven months of staying in the Ark. Yes, the earth they came upon was no longer what it used to be. Yet he gave thanks for the gift of life; he gave thanks for the gift of a new beginning.


Have we also learnt to give thanks to God, irrespective of the situations in which we find ourselves? Have we learnt to give Him thanks for the gift of life, even though the circumstances of our world are not pleasant or orderly in any way? Have we learnt to give thanks to Him for every new beginning, the beginning of a new day, a new week, a new month, a new year, a new season and a new phase of our lives? 


The bible says, “… give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1Thess 5:18NIV) Did you see that? It is the will of God for us to give Him thanks in all circumstances, instead of complaining, griping or grumbling. And it is those of us who learn to give Him thanks in all the situations of our lives that are truly living in His will for us and that will continually receive more and more of all that we need to make our lives count in this world from Him.


For example, look at how God responded to Noah's sacrifice of thanksgiving: 


“The LORD smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: "Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done. "As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease." Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.”” (Gen 8:21-9:3NIV)


Can you see how God responded to Noah's thanksgiving? He responded with words of blessings on the leader of this new world and his family. First, He said I will no longer curse the ground again because of man, even though he is wicked from infancy. In other words, He reversed the curse he had placed on the ground because of Adam. Just think about that. Through one man's sin, the ground was cursed for all of us. And through one man's thanksgiving, the curse was removed. This is why farming has continued to be a blessing to all of us all around the world.


Then, apart from removing the curse that was placed on the ground, God also specially blessed Noah and his sons, just as He had blessed Adam in the very beginning. He blessed these men with fruitfulness and increase. He blessed them with the authority to rule over and utilise for their good everything on earth, in the air and inside the sea. So, even though they were starting afresh in the world, starting with almost nothing to their credit, they had enough of God's blessings to turn the earth into a wonder for themselves to live in. And what made all these blessings available to them? Thanksgiving!


Furthermore, God made a covenant with Noah that same day that He would never again cut off life from the face of the earth by the waters of a flood. And He gave him the rainbow as the sign of this covenant. What made God so pleased with Noah that He did this? It was his thanksgiving. 


You can now see that thanksgiving is a powerful way of receiving fullness from God. It is a powerful way of unleashing His blessings on our lives and in our lives. And to say the fact, we can never tell how far God will go in moving in our lives and setting things right for us, if we will begin to wholeheartedly give Him thanks for all that He is to us and for all that He has done for us.


So, stop looking at the circumstances of your life at the moment, however messy they may be. Instead, start giving thanks to God for the gift of life and for everything else He has done for you that you can think of. That is because as long as there is breath in you, there is no height you cannot attain by the grace of God. So, learn to give thanks to God in every situation, and you will be amazed at how He will move in your life and change even rules of centuries to favour you.



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DON’T FOOLISHLY COMPARE YOURSELF WITH OTHERS 27/04/2024


“We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.” (2Corinthians 10:12NIV) 


It is a foolish thing to measure yourself or compare yourself with others. And you know it is one of the reasons we sometimes think that certain people should not enjoy certain things in their lives. We look at the way we are living our lives – so holy, righteous and pure – and we see that there are certain things we are still not enjoying from God’s hand. But here is a fellow that is messing up and does not take God seriously at all. He skips church meetings as he likes. At work he is known as a rogue. And in his neighbourhood, nobody likes him. Yet he is progressing in life. 


Now perhaps you are working in the same office with this fellow, and you realise that he often gets promoted ahead of you. You may want to begin to say, “Wait a minute. This guy is not living right with God. Why then should he is being promoted before me? I am the one living to please God. I am the one doing everything right here.” And the truth is that we often think like this – many of God’s people often think like this. We think that when people’s lives are messed up, they should not be enjoying God’s goodness at all. At least, they should not be enjoying His goodness the way we are. We are the ones that are pleasing God. So, if we are enjoying His blessings and goodness, it is understandable. But these fellows that are not pleasing God. Why, then, should they enjoy His goodness or be experiencing progress in their lives at better than us? 


Well, things don’t work that way with God. Do you even know that the fact that you are spiritual does not mean that you are going to be more gifted in the things of God than one that is carnal? A Carnal Christian can be more spiritually gifted than you are. Some people are so carnal that it is obvious in their lives. Yet when they share Scriptures with others, you may begin to wonder, “How come this man is able to share the Scriptures like this, even in his carnality?” Also, often you meet some Carnal sisters who are very gifted with singing. And when they begin to sing among God’s people, everybody is stirred and excited to worship. But then you could look at yourself and say, “But when I sing people don’t get stirred this way? And I am the spiritual one here.” Well, things don’t work that way with God.


See, God can and, in fact, has used carnal people in healing the sick and even in raising the dead in the past. So, there are things you don’t equate with spirituality. The bible, for example, tells us that John the Baptist never performed a single miracle. Yet the Lord Jesus said that of all those who were born of women not one was greater than John the Baptist. (Cf. Matthew 11:11; John 10:41) 


So, don’t foolishly compare yourself with others. There is no basis for doing so in Scriptures. Just be yourself and live out your life on the basis of God’s grace upon your life. And may you be daily strengthened to do so, in Jesus’ amen.



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IF THEY HAD NOT BEEN SUBMISSIVE 26/04/2024


“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.” (Micah 5:2NIV)


This is a prophecy concerning Jesus Christ and how He would be born in Bethlehem. And we see Matthew quoting this prophecy when talking in his gospel about the birth of Jesus Christ. He says this from verse 1 of chapter 2 of his gospel:


“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written: “But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.””” (Matthew 2:2NIV)


You can see that even the religious leaders of the Jews were expecting their Messiah to be born in Bethlehem. They believed Micah’s prophecy and even quoted it to Herod. Now Matthew, in this account, does not share with us the circumstances that led to Jesus’ being born in Bethlehem. But Luke does so in his own gospel. Look at how he puts it from verse 1 of chapter 2:


“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register. So, Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.” (Luke 2:1-7NIV)


You can see here that Luke is showing us how Jesus came to be born in Bethlehem. There was a decree issued by Caesar Augustus at that time, directing everyone in his empire to go to their places and be numbered. And Joseph and Mary both obeyed that decree, even though they were living in Nazareth at the time. Now their minds were not on the prophecy that said that the baby Mary was carrying would be born in Bethlehem. But when the decree was issued, they too, in submission to the emperor, went to Bethlehem. And it was while they were there that Jesus was born.


So, even though it does not look like God is working in the affairs of men, He is actually working in our affairs. God moved that emperor at the time to issue that edict for everybody to go to their places to be numbered. And it would require Joseph and Mary to be submissive to the governing authorities to obey that decree. If they had not been submissive, then, the will of God would not have been accomplished in their lives and through their lives.


God wanted His Son Jesus to be born in Bethlehem. And He needed a man and a woman that He would use to accomplish that. That man and that woman, however, had to be submissive to the governing authorities. Otherwise, what God wanted would not happen. Choosing Joseph and Mary, then, was not a mistake on God’s part. He chose individuals who were submissive to governing authorities as parents for Jesus. If He had chosen people who had no respect for the leaders of their government, His purpose may have been thwarted through their rebellion.


Well, here is a point we must hold on to: when rules or laws are made by our leaders, don’t stand against them, as long as they are not contrary to the righteousness of God. That is because through those laws God can accomplish His good purpose in your life. We know that God is at work in us to will and to act according to His good purpose. We also know that He is working to turn things around for our good. But it is not every time that He will step out of heaven to do things for us or that He will send His angels to do things for us. Most of the time, it is people that He will use. And among the people that He often uses to accomplish His good purpose in our lives are those who have authority over us. He often uses them to guide us, lead us and sometimes drive us to do things, even things that we don’t like to do, that will cause His good purpose to happen in our lives. But if we are not submissive to them, this will not happen.



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BE HUNGRY AND THIRSTY FOR MORE 25/04/2024


“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” (Matt 5:6NIV)


Who is the giver of righteousness? God! So, in order to be righteous, God must give you righteousness as a gift. It is not something that your hard work can obtain for you. But to possess His righteousness, you must be hungry and thirsty for Him in your life. Then for His righteousness to manifest in you, you must also be hungry and thirsty for Him to work in yo


Well, the point is that God wants us to be hungry and thirsty for Him, for more and more of Him. And He says that those of us who are hungry and thirsty for Him, who want to see His righteousness manifest in our lives and in our world, will be satisfied by Him. He will satisfy us with everything we need


Why will He want to satisfy us with everything we need, if He does not want us to have more? The truth is that He wants us to keep having more until we are satisfied. And all we need for that to happen is to be hungry and thirsty for more of Him and more of what He wants us to have


This, of course, is showing us that He does not want us to be complacent in life. Instead, He wants us to always desire to know Him better, to have His fullness dwell in us, to be all that He wants us to be and to have all that He wants us to have in this world. And what will lead us to experience these things is our hunger and thirst for them


Look also at what Jesus says in John, chapter 10, verse 10: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (NIV) Can you see that? Our Lord Jesus came so that we may experience fullness of life. And if you are complacent, you cannot experience life to the full. If you are complacent, you cannot be all that God wants you to be in life or accomplish all that He wants you to accomplish. The moment you are complacent, the moment you think that your life is okay as it is and that you do not need to be a better man, woman, husband, wife, child, Christian or citizen, you are already on your way out of relevance and out of this world. You are already dead, even though you are alive, and your life has begun to decompose and decay


You need to understand that as long as you are alive in this world, you cannot have any false sense of self-satisfaction. It will keep you from looking ahead to becoming the person God wants you to be and to having what He wants you to have. It will make you crest. And once you crest in that sense, you can only depreciate in character and usefulness


God, however, does not want us to crest in life. What He wants is for us to continually hunger and thirst for the fullness of Him and of the life that He purchased for us in Christ. So, we must always look forward to what can be instead of fixing our gaze on what is. Of course, we must be thankful for what we are and what we have. And we must not get ourselves involved in anything that is contrary to the will of God in order to be where we want to be or have what we want to have. But we must always be hungry and thirsty for more of God and more of life. Otherwise, our lives will be stagnate


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SYMPTOMS OF WORLDLINESS  24/04/2024


“I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarrelling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere humans? For when one says, ‘I follow Paul,’ and another, ‘I follow Apollos,’ are you not mere human beings?” (1Corinthians 3:2-4NIV).


From what Paul says to us in our opening text, the Christian is not a mere human being—he is not an ordinary human being. The Christian is a different class of human beings. He belongs to a different class. That is because he has been born again. He has received the life of God. He has received the nature of God. So, he is no longer a mere human being.


But Paul says about the Corinthian Christians, “You are still acting like mere human beings. You are still worldly.” Why? According to him, it is because there is jealousy and quarrelling among them. And that means, to begin with, jealousy does not belong in the church. It is an attribute of the world. It belongs in the world, not among God’s people. Envy, rivalry and the like do not belong among God’s people. So when a brother is jealous of another brother, he is worldly. And when a sister is jealous of another sister, she is worldly. These things do not belong in the church. So, if you are jealous of anybody, you are worldly. It is as simple as that. And if you are envious of anybody, you are worldly. 


Yes, there is a sense in which the word ‘envy’ is used positively. Then you will be talking about envying someone for something good that he is doing, so that you also can do likewise. But that is not what we are talking about here. We are talking about bitter jealousy or bitter envy here. And we are saying this is not a trait or an attribute that you should have. This is not a trait with which you should be described, as a child of God. It belongs in the world. And so, having become a child of God, we should not be seeing jealousy in you. We should not see it in your face or in the way you talk or in the way you act. 


In any case, even though members of the church in Corinth had been Christians for a while and had all the gifts of the Spirit that you could think of at work in their midst, they were still jealous of one another. In addition to that, they were also quarrelling with one another. And that means if you are quarrelsome, you are worldly. It is as simple as that. If you quarrel with people or have issues with them all the time, then, you are worldly. If you cannot relate freely with people or work freely with people, without quarrelling with them, then, you are worldly.


Now I am not saying that when people are doing wrong things they must not be corrected or set right. But you don’t correct people in a quarrelsome manner. Unfortunately, some people are just quarrelsome. They are simply belligerent. Any little act of provocation from anybody towards them, they are set to quarrel. That is a symptom of worldliness.


In addition, members of the church in Corinth were also divided among themselves. The church was divided into different camps with different heads and leaders. But the church has just one head. Yes, there may be people that you respect in the church. But the church has just one head, and that is Jesus Christ. And you should not allow anybody to take His place in your life, neither should you yourself attempt to take His place in anybody’s life. 


All of this is why it is wrong to debate among ourselves which minister of the gospel is superior in anointing to the other. But we often find ourselves doing this. We compare ministers of the gospel and try to establish the better ones among them. And each time you find yourself having this kind of conversation with anyone, you are showing that you are worldly.


Now there are other symptoms of worldliness given to us in Scriptures, which space will not permit me to list for you. But the point I want you to get is that worldliness should not be identified with any child of God. That is because it results in spiritual death. It brings us to a situation in which we are again dead to God and not able to respond to Him appropriately. And where that is the case, spiritual stagnation will set in, exposing us to all kinds of satanic afflictions and God’s judgment. 


So, don’t give room for any kind of worldliness in your life or make excuses for it. Otherwise, it may ruin everything good in your life before you wake up.


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THE REASON MAN IS NOT HOPELESS 23/04/2024


“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16NIV) 


Who loved the world? God! And here John describes the extent of His love for humanity. He says, “God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Already, what humanity deserves is destruction; what it deserves is to be eternally separated from God. But because God loves man, He is unwilling to allow man to perish. So, He gave His one and only Son for him. We can, then, see that the love of God is geared towards preventing man from perishing. 


Furthermore, in Romans 5, Paul tells us the condition of man when God proved His love for him. From verse 6 he says, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.” (Romans 5:6NIV) Look at that. When we were still powerless, God came to our rescue. At that time, we could not help ourselves from sinning or from destroying ourselves. But God came to our rescue. 


Now we still see many in this condition today. They cannot help themselves from destroying themselves. They know this, but they are not seeking help in the right direction or are not seeking help at all. You may have come in contact with individuals like that before. You keep telling them that they are going to destroy themselves, should they continue to do certain things they love to do. And their response is always, “I know these things, but I cannot help myself.” 


Sometimes, what such people are struggling with may not even be something that is obviously immoral. It may be an addiction to wine or cigarettes. We often see people who are smoking cigarettes and coughing at the same time. And when you tell them, “This is killing you. Why don’t you stop it?” they will most likely say, “I know. But I cannot help myself.” He is powerless against what is destroying him.


Also, we often see married people who are involved in things that will ultimately destroy their homes or lives. And when you tell them, “This is hurting you already. Stop it!” their response will be, “I know it is hurting me. But I can’t stop it.” Why? They are powerless against what is destroying them. 


In addition, look around, and you will see many young people that are destroying their own lives through wrong relationships. Some of them are failing in their studies because of this. They were fine before they started these relationships. But now they are in trouble. They have lost focus and everything is falling apart for them. Yet when you tell them, “Why don’t you stop this?” their answer will be, “I can’t!” There are even times that they use love as their excuse for destroying themselves. They are simply powerless against the thing that is destroying them,


Well, again, Paul says, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die.” (Romans 5:6-7NIV) What is coming from Paul here is quite interesting actually. He makes a distinction between righteous people and good people. So, someone can be good in the eyes of men and not be righteous in the sight of God. But you cannot find a righteous person that is not good. 


This, of course, is because men’s understanding of righteousness and goodness is corrupt. So, they though they want what is good, they don’t want righteousness or righteous people. That is what the bible says and that is also what we see in all of life. And that is why Paul says even though we may not find anybody that wants to give his life for a righteous man, we may occasionally find people who are willing to give their lives or take a bullet for someone that has been good to them.


But as far as God is concerned, none of us was either righteous or good in His sight. Yet He showed us love. Paul describes this in verse 8 of this chapter, where he says, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8NIV) And he is saying this to show us our condition when God did all that He did for us. We were still unrighteous, ungodly and powerless when He came to us and saved us. We deserved nothing but death when He did what He did. And Paul says He did what He did for us because He loves us. So, the reason man is not hopeless is that God loves him.


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CONCERNING CULTURAL INFLUENCES 22/04/2024


“For there are many rebellious people, full of meaningless talk and deception, especially those of the circumcision group. They must be silenced, because they are disrupting whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach – and that for the sake of dishonest gain. One of Crete’s own prophets has said it: “Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons.” This saying is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith.” (Titus 1:10-13NIV)


Titus had been left in Crete by Paul to take care of certain things that were out of place among the brethren there. And in this passage, Paul his addressing him on how he is to handle them. First, he tells him to silence certain people who have been rebellious in the churches in Crete. So, it is not a new thing to have rebels in the church, people who will not want to take instructions or be rebuked or follow what is in accordance with sound doctrine. And leaders of God’s people must not give in to the pressure or manipulation of such people. Instead, as Paul tells Titus, they must silence them.


What we are saying is that anyone that is causing confusion in the church or disrupting order among God’s people must be silenced. They must not be allowed to carry on with whatever nonsense they are carrying out among God’s people. How is that to be done? Are church leaders to resort to force in silencing them? No! This is a spiritual thing. So, we handle it by teaching the word of God to point out the errors of such people to the people of God and to warn them and those associating with them. 


Then Paul goes on to point out certain cultural or environmental influences in Crete that Titus must not overlook but must be ready to address among the brethren. He says to him, “One of Crete’s own prophets has said it: “Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons.” And this saying is true.” These people have become Christians, as we can see. Yet certain cultural traits of their people are still finding expression in their lives. Many of them have not abandoned these traits; they are still conforming to them and allowing them to run their lives.


Now what are these cultural traits that are prevalent among the Cretans? First, there is lying. That means an average Cretan is a liar. So, if you are interacting with him, you can be sure that he will attempt to deceive you or cheat you. Second, they are called evil brutes. That means they are violent. And if you should get involved in anything with them that results in a quarrel, you can be sure that they will want to hurt you physically. Then they are referred to as lazy gluttons. That means they don’t want to work or be responsible in life. They just want to play around and eat the bread of idleness. 


Unfortunately, as Paul further tells Titus, all these things are not only true of Cretans but are also finding expression among those of them that have become Christians. And he is telling him these things because he wants him to know that he will surely find in Crete brethren in whose lives these evil cultural traits are still present and obvious. That means these believers have not yet renewed their minds. That is why they are still conforming to those evil cultural tendencies of their city.


Paul tells us in his letter to the Romans to renew our minds (Rom 12:2). And with what are we to renew our minds? The word of God! We are expected to have our minds cleansed with the word of God. That way, evil cultural traits or influences that are prevalent where we are or that are associated with the culture in which we grew up or got educated would not dominate our lives again as Christians. 


Yes, we may have grown up under these evil influences. But having become Christians, we are no longer of the world; we are now of God and of His kingdom of righteousness. And as citizens of the kingdom of God, we have our own culture. The word of God defines our culture for us. And in doing so, it tells us that we have been recreated to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. These, then, are what our lives must reflect: God’s righteousness and holiness. And the only way this will happen is for us to allow His word to renew our minds, to change the way we think.


Well, my point is that we need to pay attention to the cultural influences or traits that are prevailing where we live, work, do business or study. This is so that we will know those among them that we must not yield or conform to. Otherwise, though we have become Christians, people may find it difficult to tell that we are, when they can see that certain wrong cultural traits that are seen in those of the world are also in us.



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THE TIMING DOES NOT REST ON HIM ALONE 21/04/2024


“… when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built…” (1Peter 3:20NIV)


As we see in the book of Genesis, when God wanted to save Noah and his family from the worldwide flood that He wanted to bring to destroy everything from the face of the earth, He told him to build an ark. But why did God make that move to destroy humanity and every other living thing from the face of the earth? It was because of man's wickedness. Man's wickedness at that time, according to the bible, filled God's heart with pain. Our wickedness made Him regret making us and handing His earth over to us to govern. So, the only solution before Him was to make an end of us and perhaps start all over again. (Cf. Gen 6:5-7)


But then, He found a man that was righteous and blameless before Him. And because He is a just God, He was not willing to destroy this man and his family along with the rest of humanity. So, He told him what to do to be saved. And the man went ahead and did exactly as he had been instructed. He built the ark he was told to build and so saved himself and his family from that flood that took away everyone and everything from the face of the earth. (Cf. Gen 6-8)


However, there is something we are not told in the account of this man's salvation that we have in the book of Genesis. And it is that God patiently waited for him to finish building the ark before He sent the flood. Exactly when God spoke to Noah to start building that ark we are not told in Genesis. We are only told that he was six hundred years old when the floodwaters came (Gen 7:6&11).


But Peter, in our opening bible text, tells us that God waited patiently for this man to finish building the ark during those days. That means it must have taken Noah a while before he raised money to build the ark and to finish building it. It must also have taken him a while to gather and store all the food that his family and all the animals and birds with them would eat while in the ark. And we know that they were in the ark for one full year (Gen 7:11&8:13-14). So, it couldn't have been a small job for Noah to get all the food they ate in the ark ready and preserved before the flood. 


Furthermore, Noah and those with him must have needed more than food to survive in that ark in which they were shut in for a whole year. They must have needed water to drink, clothes to wear, fuel for cooking and lightings and so forth to make their stay in the ark a little comfortable for them. You can, then, see why God had to be patient with him. God had to make sure that this man was fully ready to be saved from what was coming before He brought His judgment on man and all his activities here on earth at that time.


So, in a sense, the time that the flood came was not dependent on God alone; it was also dependent on Noah's readiness. God was always ready. But Noah too had to be. Otherwise, his salvation could not happen. In like manner, there are things God cannot bring about for us in our lives until we are ready to handle them. Yes, we may be praying to Him to make those things happen without delay. And if He should answer us and make them happen, according to our yearnings, their coming may just be our undoing.


But because He loves us, God often patiently waits for us to be ready to handle what He is bringing for our salvation, elevation or expansion before He brings it. That way, He can preserve us to enjoy whatever He brings to us. So, while we think we are waiting for God to move in certain ways on our behalf or to do certain things for us, the truth is that He is always the one waiting for us to be ready for what is coming. Do you know that even in dealing with the return of our Lord Jesus Christ, as we are told the in the bible, we are the ones that must speed it up by perfecting our readiness for Him? (Cf. 2Pet 3:10-12)


See, God lives in eternity. So, a day or a thousand years make no difference to Him (2Pet 3:8). He always has all the time to do whatever He wants to do and can be patient with us for as long as He wants to. But do we, here on earth, have all the time to do whatever we want to do? No, we don't! We can't only function while it is day, as our Lord Jesus tells us (John 9:4). Once night overtakes us, all works must cease. This is why our prayer all the time must be that God will daily perfect our readiness to receive from Him all that He has in store for us in this world and to also receive His Son when He finally arrives to bring us into our eternal home. And may this be so for you and me everyday, in Jesus' name. Amen.


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SEPARATE LIGHT FROM DARKNESS 20/04/2024


“God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness.” (Gen 1:4NIV)


Why did God, in the beginning, separate light from darkness? It was because light is clearly different from darkness. Light is anything that makes things visible, according to the bible, while darkness is anything that hides the real state of things (Eph 5:14). Therefore, God was not going to lie to Himself in the beginning and act as though light and darkness were the same thing, when they were actually different. That was why He separated them.


Now we too, as children of God, must imitate Him in this: we must learn to separate light from darkness wherever we are. Why? It is because they are actually different. Light is different from darkness, just as day is different from night. We don't debate this or argue over it, for we know it is the plain truth. 


In like manner, good is different from bad and righteousness is different from wickedness. So, we must always separate them wherever we are. Why? It is because, ever since the fall of man, there have always been in the world individuals who will have us believe that there is really no difference between good and evil or righteousness and wickedness. For them, everything depends on how we look at things. So, if you consider something to be evil, then, to you it is evil. That, however, does not mean that someone else has to accept your opinion of that thing. In other words, if another person considers what you take as evil to be good, then, that thing is good to that person.


You can now see why many all over the world are now accepting homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality and other related forms of perversion as good. You can also see why many now accept indecent exposure of people's bodies, especially ladies, as nothing but an expression of self-awareness and confidence. And this, of course, is the explanation for why many, especially in our country, are now feeling at home with internet fraudsters and sorcerers, also known as 'Yahoo guys', and prostitutes, also known now as 'Hook-up girls' as people that are legitimately working like others. But are they right?


Well, human beings will always be right in their judgment of what is good or evil, if they are the author of life. But they are not the author of life. God is. And because God is, He separated light from darkness and day from night from the very beginning of things. He did not mix these things up and say, “They are all the same,” or say, “What you think of them depends on how you look at them.”  


In like manner, the truth about what is good and what is bad lies with God, not with man or any other being. Remember that He declared everything He made in the beginning, with the exception of none, to be very good (Gen 1:31). So, if anything that is bad shows up on the scene, He is the only one that will be able to tell us. 


That being the case, we cannot rely on the world's concept of good or evil, if we want to be able to separate them. The only one that we can rely on for the truth about what is good and what is evil is God. And He has given us the Scriptures to make this clearly known to us. Our job, then, is to devote ourselves to what He has said through the Scriptures and learn for ourselves what is good and what is evil. 


Why is this important? It is important because God has called us to be light. And since He has called us to be light, He does not want us to have anything to do with darkness anymore. The bible says, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” (Eph 5:8-12NIV)


Did you see that? The child of God is light and, as such, must live as a child of light and separate himself from all forms of darkness. But will he be able to live fully as light, if he can't always separate darkness from light, good from evil? No! This, then, is why he is further told in that text to learn and prove what pleases the Lord. And if you are truly a child of God, you will give yourself to doing that – you will give yourself to learning the will of God for your life, so that you can always separate yourself as light from darkness. This, of course, is what will show whether you will reign eternally with Him or not.

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CAUTION OR SUSPICION 19/04/2024

“So Hanun seized David's men, shaved off half of each man's beard, cut off their garments in the middle at the buttocks, and sent them away.” (2Sam 10:4NIV)


Why did Hanun, king of the Ammonites, treat David’s men in the manner described in our opening bible text? He did so because he thought he was being cautious. But was he really being cautious or suspicious? 


As the account shows us, Hanun’s father, Nahash had been a friend of David before he died. And though we are not told how they became friends, we are told that the reason David sent his men to give his condolences to his son, Hanun, was that he was a very kind person to him (2Sam 10:1-2). That, of course, was one of the things that characterised David’s way of life. He was not someone that would forget those who had been good or kind to him. Rather, he was someone that was always seeking them out, so that he could show his gratitude to them in whatever way he could. (Cf. 1Sam 30:26-31; 2Sam 9; 2Sam 19:31-39)


Unfortunately, on this occasion, his kind gesture was totally misrepresented by Hanun, the son of his late friend. And it was misrepresented because the officials with the young man misled him. They sowed a seed of evil suspicions in his heart, even though there was no reason for him to be suspicious. (Cf. 2Sam 10:3) 


David, before that time, had done nothing to Hanun’s country to make him think of him as an enemy. He had been nothing but a good and loyal friend to his father. And even if he had wanted to be cautious, probably because he was not really close to David, all he would have needed to do was to give instructions to his men to watch the activities of his ambassadors. Then their report would have cleared his doubts and prevented him from being unduly suspicious.


But because he was a foolish young man, instead of acting with caution at that time, he acted in evil suspicions and shamelessly maltreated ambassadors of an ally country that only came to sympathise with him for the loss of his father. That, of course, resulted in an unfortunate war between him and the nation of Israel, which was a stronger and more powerful nation. And because of the war he lost his men, his land, his crown and his reputation. How sad! (Cf. 2Sam 10; 1Chro 19:1-20:3)


Well, this story is teaching us one thing, which is that there is a great deal of difference between caution and evil suspicion. To be cautious means that we do not assume that we know what people will do or how they will function under any circumstance, if we do not know them to be true children of God or have not known them for a very long time. Therefore, we do not carelessly let them into our lives or affairs. Instead, we put appropriate boundaries in place in our dealings with them, so that we may, in the course of time, learn how well we can trust them. 


But to be suspicious means to have a feeling that something is wrong or that something may go wrong in our dealings with someone. And is it altogether wrong to have this feeling? No! It all depends on who we have such feelings about, why we have such feelings about them and what we do as a result of such feelings that we have about them.


If someone, as Paul says about himself and his ministry companions, does not have any record of being injurious, manipulative or corrupt in dealing with us or others that we know, we have no reason to be suspicious of them (2Cor 7:2). Otherwise, whatever suspicions we have about them will only be evil suspicions, something that the word of God warns against (1Tim 6:4). 


Then even if we have reasons to be suspicious of someone because we don’t know them well enough, because we have seen them act in some ungodly manner before or because someone gave us some bad news about them, our suspicions should only drive us to be cautious and on guard in dealing with them. We should not allow them to drive us to disgrace or embarrass them when they have not done us any wrong and we have no real proof that they are going to hurt us in any way. Otherwise, our suspicions about them will be nothing but evil suspicions.


Now when we allow evil suspicions to drive us to hurt, disgrace or embarrass others who have done nothing wrong to us, we, like Hanun, may end up having an unnecessary and unfortunate war to fight. And that may forever shut some doors of goodness that could have come to us through them against us. Only God, then, knows how many people have been denied certain measure of His goodness that could have been theirs in life because of these things. They, out of suspicion, treated shamefully or abusively certain individuals who merely wanted to help them or do them good. And they have to live with the sorrow and loss that came with doing so for the rest of their earthly lives.


More so, when we allow evil suspicions to drive us in relating to others, even if our suspicions are right, those watching and who have seen the kind of bad treatment we have given to them may never get to know that our suspicions are right. Therefore, instead of being seen as the victims of those who want to hurt us, we will be seen and treated as the villains. And who knows how terribly that will affect us? Only God knows.


So, yes, be cautious in all your dealings with men. But give no room in your heart for any form of evil suspicion. That is because it can only harm you; it has no good to offer you.



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IN THE HIGHEST REGARD 18/04/2024


“Treat your leaders in the highest regard.” (Cf. 1Thessalonians 5:12-13) 


That is God’s instruction to us on relating to our church leaders. He commands us to treat them in the highest regard. What does it mean to treat people in the highest regard? Nobody can define this for you; you are to define it for yourself. So, what does it mean to you? 


Mind you, you are not told to do treat your church leaders in the highest regard because they are better than you, for they are not better than you. No child of God is better than another child of God in the sight of God. And I am not talking about being better than others in terms of conduct here; rather, I am talking about being better in terms of worth. I am saying no child of God is better than others in terms of worth. That is because the same price was paid by Him for our souls. He placed the same value on all of us. 


Remember that Jesus, while praying before going to the cross, said, “Father, let the world know that you have loved my disciples just as you have loved me.” (Cf. John 17:23) God loves us just as He loves Jesus. This is amazing. And really, if this had not been the case, He would not have given Jesus to die for us. In order for Him to give Jesus for us, He must have placed the same value He placed on Him on us too. So, He loves us just as He loves Him. And all of us stand before Him equal. We all are brethren.


But in terms of service, He wants us to honour those who are serving us because of the work they are doing among us. So, don’t talk to them anyhow or relate to them anyhow. This is for your own good. And where leaders understand this, they will not force you to respect them. 


I know there are places where church leaders literally force or coerce their brethren to respect them. They have all kinds of structures in place that will make brethren respect or regard them, even though those brethren may not be sincere about it. You know you can prostrate for someone, when inside you something else is going on. But we are not talking about giving insincere regard to our leaders. That is hypocrisy, and God does not want it in His church – He hates it.


So, willingly, respect your leader. Don’t talk to them anyhow or relate to them anyhow. There are indeed assemblies in which such things happen. They abuse their leaders and talk to them as they please. Some will even be willing to beat up their leaders when provoked. Things like such are wrong. And I am not saying that the brethren are always to blame for such things. There are leaders who also have all kinds of problems in their lives, which they have not dealt with and which give brethren reasons to disrespect them. 


Respect has to be earned. Yes, God has commanded us to respect our leaders. But leaders also have to earn it from their brethren. This is why you, as a leader of God’s people, must live your life in such a way that those you are leading will respect you. You cannot be quoting scriptures to people all the time, saying, “The bible says you must respect me.” What kind of life are you living? Are you living that kind of life that will earn people’s respect?


When Paul tells Timothy not to allow anybody to look down on him, most people think that he means that the young man must not give room for anybody to talk anyhow to him because he is young (1Timothy 4:12). But that is not what he means. What he means is that Timothy is to live his life in such a way that nobody will have any reason to look down on him because he is young. He is to live in such a way that nobody will say, “It is because he is a small boy that he is acting like that.” He is to conduct himself in such a way that people will not use his youthfulness as an excuse for disrespecting him. 


So, leaders also have their own roles in all this. They must show themselves as worthy of respect. However, you cannot use the misbehaviour of your leader as an excuse for violating God’s instruction that says that you are to treat them in the highest regard. Otherwise, you will have God to answer to. And you may not know how He is going to judge your matter. So, mind yourself.


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THE PRACTICE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS 17/04/2024


“The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.” (2Thessalonians 2:9-10NIV) .


Look at that. the coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. And how does Satan work? By the use of all sorts of display of power, through signs and wonders!


So, Satan can forge miracles. He can forge signs. He can produce (forge) miraculous things. And that is why we cannot say that you belong to God just because you perform signs and wonders or because you exercise what seem to be gifts of the Spirit. Those things can be forged. 


But there is something that cannot be forged, and that is the practice of righteousness. That is why the Lord says make a tree good, and its fruit will be good; make a tree bad, and its fruit will be bad. A good tree cannot bring forth bad fruit. And a bad tree cannot bring forth good fruit. So, the practice of righteousness cannot be forged. If you have righteousness in you, you will bring forth the fruit of righteousness. If you don’t have it in you, you cannot bring forth its fruit. (Cf. Matt 12:33-35)


You know there are trees that don’t bring forth fruit but that look like some trees that bring forth certain fruits. When you look at their leaves or flowers, you may mistake them for certain fruit-bearing trees. But they are not. So, that a tree looks like a mango tree does not mean that it can bring forth mangoes. Or that a tree looks like an orange tree does not mean that it can bring forth oranges. If it is an orange tree, it will definitely bring forth oranges. But if it is not, there is nothing you do to it that will make it bring forth oranges. 


All this is why, as a child of God, it is important for you to give yourself to the practice of righteousness. That is because one main outward proof of your possession of righteousness in your heart is your practice of it.



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SHARE ALL GOOD THINGS WITH THEM 16/04/2024


“Those who are taught the word of God should provide for their teachers, sharing all good things with them.” (Gal 6:6NLT)


Did you see that? It is the will of God for you to be generous to anyone that is regularly and faithfully feeding you with the word of God. There are, of course, many teachers of the word of God in the church and all around the world. And God is not asking you to share all good things with all of them, even if you know them by their names. But you have a duty to be generous to those who are committed to teaching you the word of God and building up your life with it, so that you will become the person God wants you to be in life.


Then observe that that bible verse says that we are to share all good things with such people. That means as good things are happening to us, we should remember to let them partake of them. It is not only our troubles, distresses, misfortunes and so forth that we should be sharing with them. Unfortunately, what most of us often share with our pastors and other believers that God regularly uses to teach us His word are our troubles. We want them to counsel us and pray for us each time things are hard for us. But when our prayers are answered or we are blessed with some unusual favour we don’t remember them. And this is wrong.


Now, again, it is not about how much good things you give to them or share with them; rather, it is about the willingness of your heart to do the will of God by being generous to them. If you are willing to do this, God will accept whatever you give to them based on what you have and not on what you do not have. To say the fact, one of the reasons most of our preachers now lie, manipulate, pressure and threaten God’s people to give to support them is that many of us have been irresponsible along this line. We have not been willingly generous to supporting them and the work they are doing. 


So, they have resorted to using all kinds of gimmicks in getting us to give to them. If they are not organising some fake programs for our elevation or glory, they will be selling some special oil, water, handkerchiefs and so forth to us. And while it is true that God will not fail to judge them for their lies and unfaithfulness, it is also true that He will not fail to judge every one of us who is not willing to do His will by being generous to those He has appointed to minister to us.


You may now want to ask yourself, “HOW REGULARLY DO I SHARE GOOD THINGS WITH MY PASTOR AND SOME OTHER BROTHERS AND SISTERS GOD HAS BEEN USING TO TEACH ME HIS WORD AND MAKE MY LIFE BETTER? WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME I EVEN GAVE SOMETHING TO ANY OF THESE PEOPLE TO SUPPORT THEM AND MAKE THEIR WORK EASIER OR MORE ENJOYABLE, NOT BECAUSE THEY ASKED ME BUT BECAUSE I WAS BEING DILIGENT TO ACT ON THE WORD OF GOD?”


Well, regardless of what your answers to these questions may be, my prayer is that God will lead your heart to take these words seriously and begin to apply them to your life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


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WHEN IT IS BETTER 15/04/2024


“But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.” (1 Cor 7:9NIV) 


Did you see that? It is better to marry than to burn passion. It is better to get married than to be involved in sexual immorality. It is better to marry than to nurse evil and destructive thoughts in your heart about sex. It is better to marry than to give yourself to pornography or masturbation. These things will ultimately destroy you and your love life, if you give in to them.


Why do people who have no intention of getting married to each other end up being in a home or marriage together? A lot of times, it is because they are overcome by sexual passions. And you who are saying that you are not ready for marriage may end up being overcome by these same passions, once you stir up love and refuse to do what is right on time. There are many that will voluntarily testify to the trueness of this.


So, if you can tell that you are ripe for a marriage relationship and you have found the right person, don’t unduly waste time on any kind of courtship. Don’t start out a love life and then immediately embark of a project that will surely make you unready for marriage in the next couple of years. It is not wise. And don’t start acting all spiritual about this and making everybody believe it is the Spirit of God that is leading you to act like this. I think I too have the Spirit of God (1Cor 7:40).

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CAN ANYBODY REALLY HIDE FROM HIM? 13/04/2024


“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man, "Where are you?"” (Gen 3:8-9NIV)


After the fall of man, God came to him and his wife in order to speak to them. But as we see in our opening bible text, they went hiding the moment they heard the sound of His presence in the garden that they were. Why? They were ashamed of themselves. They were ashamed of what they had done and the results that had followed. So, they went to hide themselves.


But what could they possibly accomplish by hiding where they were? Could they undo what they had done by hiding from God? Evidently, hiding from God the way Adam and Eve did could not in any way solve the eternal problem they had created. The only one that could solve it was God. So, instead of hiding from Him, what they should have done was to come to Him as they were, acknowledge their errors before Him and cast themselves on Him for salvation and deliverance. And maybe the storyline we have in the bible would have been different, if they had done that.


Unfortunately, Adam and Eve did not do that. Instead, they chose to hide their shame and fall from God. But could they really hide from Him? Can anybody really hide from Him? The bible says, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” (Heb 4:13NIV) So, what Adam and Eve did was not hidden from God. Also, where they were hiding was not hidden from Him. He saw everything and knew everything.


In like manner, there are many that are hiding from God today because of certain things they have done to their lives or other people's lives. They know they have messed up. They know that they have done the unthinkable. And they are ashamed of themselves and of their acts. But hiding from God is not the solution to whatever problem they have created for themselves. Instead, hiding from Him can only make things worse for them.


Now perhaps you are one of those people hiding from God. You need to come out of your hideout and let Him save you from that which is destroying you. Understand that you cannot really hide from Him. He sees you where you are and as you are. But He won’t force you to come out for His help, if you don’t want it. So, come out to Him for your salvation, and He will save you. Otherwise, you may end up perishing where you are, if you stay there one moment longer.



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BEGIN TO DO YOUR OWN JOB

 13/04/2024


“Then I said to them, "You see the trouble we are in: Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace." I also told them about the gracious hand of my God upon me and what the king had said to me. They replied, "Let us start rebuilding." So they began this good work.” (Neh 2:17-18NIV)


There are things God must do for us in this life. And if He does not do them, there is nothing we can do about them that will amount to anything. That is why absolute dependence on Him is important, if we want our lives to be what they ought to be.


But then, there are also things we must do for ourselves in order for our lives to be what they ought to be. And if we will not do these things for ourselves, there is nothing God can do about them. Why? It is because He has already given us the abilities, skills and resources required to do them.


For example, when Nehemiah heard about the condition of the Jews in Jerusalem that had returned home from exile, he was not happy at all and wished he could be of help. But he also knew that if God did not intervene in the matter, there was nothing he or any other person could do to help. So, he turned to Him in prayer and asked for His favour before the only man that was in a position at that time to clear the way for him to help his people. (Cf. Nehemiah 1)


Now did God answer his prayer or not? He did! He granted him favour before the emperor that the nation of Judah was under his rule at the time. So, the man was willing to let him go and help his people. More than that, he was willing to supply him with a small army for his protection and plenty of resources to accomplish his mission. Therefore, when we pray to God, we cannot even imagine what great miracles He can perform on our behalf to make things work for our good. (Cf. Nehemiah 2:1-9)


However, though it was God’s job to cause Nehemiah to be favoured before Artaxerxes, it was not His job to give this king the details of how long it would take Nehemiah to go and help his people or what sort of resources he would need to help them. That was Nehemiah’s job. And he had to do it in a very diligent and responsible manner. Otherwise, the king would not take him seriously at all.


Also, though it was God’s job to move the hearts of the Jews in Jerusalem at that time to get up and rebuild their lives and land, it was not His job to gather them, talk to them and organise them to start working. That was Nehemiah’s job. And he had to do with a demonstration of knowledge, understanding and enthusiasm. Otherwise, the people would not take him seriously at all.


Then, though it was God’s job to favour the people by sending Nehemiah to them and providing the resources they needed to rebuild their ruins for them, it was not His job to put the resources on ground together and rebuild. That was the people’s job. And they had to do it with a sense of urgency and seriousness. Otherwise, all of God’s favour lavished on then would simply go to waste.


What, then, is the point of all this? It is that we must go beyond praying to God for His intervention in our lives and affairs. We must also identify what we must do with His intervention and begin to do it with every sense of seriousness, understanding and care. Otherwise, our lives and situations will not leave where they are for where they could be. 


So, as you are praying to God for better living conditions, also begin to do whatever legitimate things you can do to experience better living conditions in a very serious manner. That way, you will not be wasting His favour but utilising it to fulfil His purpose in your life.


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BEGIN TO DO YOUR OWN JOB

 13/04/2024


“Then I said to them, "You see the trouble we are in: Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace." I also told them about the gracious hand of my God upon me and what the king had said to me. They replied, "Let us start rebuilding." So they began this good work.” (Neh 2:17-18NIV)


There are things God must do for us in this life. And if He does not do them, there is nothing we can do about them that will amount to anything. That is why absolute dependence on Him is important, if we want our lives to be what they ought to be.


But then, there are also things we must do for ourselves in order for our lives to be what they ought to be. And if we will not do these things for ourselves, there is nothing God can do about them. Why? It is because He has already given us the abilities, skills and resources required to do them.


For example, when Nehemiah heard about the condition of the Jews in Jerusalem that had returned home from exile, he was not happy at all and wished he could be of help. But he also knew that if God did not intervene in the matter, there was nothing he or any other person could do to help. So, he turned to Him in prayer and asked for His favour before the only man that was in a position at that time to clear the way for him to help his people. (Cf. Nehemiah 1)


Now did God answer his prayer or not? He did! He granted him favour before the emperor that the nation of Judah was under his rule at the time. So, the man was willing to let him go and help his people. More than that, he was willing to supply him with a small army for his protection and plenty of resources to accomplish his mission. Therefore, when we pray to God, we cannot even imagine what great miracles He can perform on our behalf to make things work for our good. (Cf. Nehemiah 2:1-9)


However, though it was God’s job to cause Nehemiah to be favoured before Artaxerxes, it was not His job to give this king the details of how long it would take Nehemiah to go and help his people or what sort of resources he would need to help them. That was Nehemiah’s job. And he had to do it in a very diligent and responsible manner. Otherwise, the king would not take him seriously at all.


Also, though it was God’s job to move the hearts of the Jews in Jerusalem at that time to get up and rebuild their lives and land, it was not His job to gather them, talk to them and organise them to start working. That was Nehemiah’s job. And he had to do with a demonstration of knowledge, understanding and enthusiasm. Otherwise, the people would not take him seriously at all.


Then, though it was God’s job to favour the people by sending Nehemiah to them and providing the resources they needed to rebuild their ruins for them, it was not His job to put the resources on ground together and rebuild. That was the people’s job. And they had to do it with a sense of urgency and seriousness. Otherwise, all of God’s favour lavished on then would simply go to waste.


What, then, is the point of all this? It is that we must go beyond praying to God for His intervention in our lives and affairs. We must also identify what we must do with His intervention and begin to do it with every sense of seriousness, understanding and care. Otherwise, our lives and situations will not leave where they are for where they could be. 


So, as you are praying to God for better living conditions, also begin to do whatever legitimate things you can do to experience better living conditions in a very serious manner. That way, you will not be wasting His favour but utilising it to fulfil His purpose in your life.


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ON THE BASIS OF OUR RESPONSE TO HIS CALL  12/04/2024


“All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.” (John 6:37NIV) 


God is making out a call to all men, saying, “Come to me, and I will give you rest. Come to me, if you are thirsty, and rivers of living water will start gushing out from within you, if you believe.” This is a general call to everyone, to anyone. Is it everyone that will respond to this call? No! But whoever responds to it will not be driven away by the Lord. 


Judas Iscariot responded to that call. And the Lord would not drive him away. Instead, He embraced him as He did others and gave the same opportunities to learn and to serve as He gave to others. You can see why He gave him authority to heal people and do miracles. It is also why He made him His treasurer. He was relating to this man on the basis of his response to His call and not on the basis of the revelation He had about him.


That, of course, is huge to swallow. But then, it is showing us that we need to be careful when we are relating to spiritually minded people. They may know things about you and not say anything to you about them. They may know things about you and not relate to you on the basis of those things they know about you. Jesus knew these things about Judas Iscariot and yet never related to him on their basis. Instead, He related to him on the basis of his own response to Him. When Jesus called him, he came. When He sent him out, he went out. When He was teaching others, he too was there to listen and learn. So, you see that, besides the revelation the Lord had about his betrayal, He had no reason at the time not to treat this man with love and care, as He was doing with the other apostles with Him.


But we may still ask, “Why did the Lord not relate to Judas on the basis of the revelation He already had about him?” The reason was that He wanted the world to see that even though this man had every opportunity to be good, to be the very person God would want him to be instead of a betrayer, he would definitely mess up in the end because he belonged to the devil, the evil one. See, the Lord has always known those that belong to Him and those who don’t. That is why the bible says God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: the Lord knows those who are His and let everyone who calls on the name of the Lord depart from wickedness. (Cf. 2Timothy 2:19)


Now even though the Lord knows those who belong to Him and those who don’t, even though He knows that who will end up with Him in heaven and those who will end up with the devil in hell, He still daily gives everybody the same opportunity to receive Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. What I am saying is that God is still calling everybody to Him through Jesus Christ everyday and not looking at the fact that some will ultimately reject Him. He is not relating to us on the basis of what He already knows about us and how our lives will end but on the basis of our response to His call. 


Ultimately, what everyone stands for will be revealed. Ultimately, those who are going to deny or reject Him will be revealed. Yet the Lord is going to give everyone the opportunity, sufficient opportunity, to do what is right. This is so that when He begins to judge us, He will be a just God and judge. You can see why the bible says no one will have any excuse for not being saved before Him.



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COUNT IT PURE JOY 11/04/2024


“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4NIV) 


James is telling us here that we are to face our life’s trials and challenges with a sense of joy. Yes, the challenges we are faced with will want to ruin our happiness and joy and also take away our peace. But it is on us to choose not to permit that to happen.


See, if we are functioning with a sense of victory, we will not give room for sadness because of certain challenges we are faced with. True victors don’t walk around with an aura of gloom, sadness or sorrow. Victors rejoice. And we must learn to rejoice in the face of life’s trials. 


Now that, of course, may be difficult for us to do. But it is what God wants us to learn. He wants us to learn to rejoice in the face of difficulties, knowing that we have already overcome them, even though our victory over them may not be visible yet. So, He says to us through James, “Count it pure joy, whenever you are faced with trials.” 


That means you must not let any trial take away your joy, happiness or peace of mind. And if you function like that, instead for your trials to destroy your faith, God will use them to build it up. Every trial is an attack on our faith. Whether it is a temptation to sin or a sickness that is seeking to take our lives or a loss of things, Satan’s aim is to use it to lure us away from God. 


What I am saying is that we need to understand that whatever the attack Satan launches against us may be, an attack on our body, mind, purity, reputation, business or anything else, his aim is to lure us away from God. He wants us to throw away our confidence in God and begin to seek peace or rest where it does not exist. That is what he wants. 


Now God’s people who do not understand this often fall into his traps. They may turn away from God to the practice of witchcraft. And that is what the devil wants. Or they may begin to complain and blame God for their failure in life or for not taking good care of them. That is also what Satan wants. That was what he wanted to do with Job. He wanted him to throw away his confidence in God and curse Him. And though he got his wife to do that, he did not get Job to do so. You too must not allow him to get you to throw away your confidence in God because of what you are faced with.


Well, James tells us to consider all our trials pure joy and know that they are coming to us to test our faith. And as faith is tested, the fruit of perseverance that is already in us begins to manifest. That means one of the ways God makes us know that we can persevere or be patient is through trials. We have His ability in us to be patient, to endure and to persevere. But unless we are tried in some ways, we may not know how strong God has made us on the inside. And this is why James goes on to say that we should allow perseverance to finish its work in us when we are faced with life’s trials. We should not give up along the way. Instead, we should persevere till the end. That way, we will be able to receive and experience everything God is seeking to accomplish through what we are going through.




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DON’T OPEN THE DOOR FOR THEIR ATTACK 10/04/2024


“The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully on Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing in his house, while David was playing the lyre, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand and he hurled it, saying to himself, ‘I’ll pin David to the wall.’ But David eluded him twice.” (2Samuel 18:10-11NIV) 


What came upon Saul forcefully here? It was not the Holy Spirit. It was an evil spirit that came upon him forcefully. And he began to prophesy. This was different from what happened when he was just anointed as king over Israel and the Spirit of God came upon him and he began to prophesy (1Sam 10:9-13). He was prophesying by an evil spirit on this occasion. And that spirit led him to attempt to kill David.


But what brought Saul into that situation in which an evil spirit began to lead him in that manner? It was disobedience to God. When you are walking in disobedience to God, you are making room for evil spirits to use you. And this is especially true of those who turn away from God to idols or to the practice of witchcraft or sorcery. Whether they have been believers or not, their lives are always open for demonic spirits to afflict them. That is how some people become mad. That is also how some become sick and nothing done for their healing works. It is equally how some become deaf, dumb or paralysed. Their involvement in witchcraft and sorcery opened the doors of their lives for evil spirits to come in and afflict them.


Well, the point I am making is that disobedience to God, any kind of disobedience to Him, can open our lives for satanic affliction. Don’t forget that Saul did not commit adultery for him to be afflicted in this manner. He had not even at this time got involved in idolatry. His sin was simply that of not carrying out God’s instruction against Amalek. That was why the Spirit of God left him and he became exposed to satanic affliction. 


Now we have the Spirit of God in us. So, we cannot be possessed by demons. I mean that the Holy Spirit and demons cannot occupy our hearts at the same time. However, by disobeying the word of God, we will be opening the doors of our lives for demons to attack and afflict us. And we may be able to tell how dangerous their attacks on us will be. So, we need to avoid any form of disobedience to God. It is safe us from needless satanic attacks and afflictions.



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EVEN WHEN YOU ARE TIRED  08/04/2024

“Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, "Sit here while I go over there and pray." He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me." Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will." Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. "Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?" he asked Peter. "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak." He went away a second time and prayed, "My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done." When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. So he left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing. Then he returned to the disciples and said to them, "Are you still sleeping and resting? Look, the hour is near, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise, let us go! Here comes my betrayer!"” (Matt 26:36-46NIV)


Why were Peter, James and John sleeping on this occasion instead of praying? Tiredness! They had had a very long and busy day. So, their eyes were heavy that very night with sleep. Yet the Lord told them to pray, so that they would not fall into temptation. But three times, within one hour, He came back to check them to see if they were praying, and He met them sleeping those three times. And that was because they were really tired.


But was the Lord Himself not tired? He was. Why, then, did He pull Himself together to pray? It was because He knew what was coming for Him. And He also knew that without praying to God to receive the strength and courage He needed to face what was coming, that dark hour of dying on the cross, He would fail. 


So, though He was tired, He put Himself in a prayer position that was suitable for Him in that hour. He fell with His face to the ground and prayed. And when He was done, He was ready to do the will of God and save humanity.


His disciples, however, were not ready when they finally woke up. So, they all ended up running away and abandoning Him when He needed them the most. Why was that? It was because they did not pray, as they had been told to do. 


Now why did they not pray? Was it just because they were tired? No! Rather, it was also because they did not understand the magnitude of what was coming for them. See, regardless of how tired you are, if you sense danger where you are, you will not sleep over it, if you are not a mentally or physically lazy person. Instead, you will take whatever steps you can take to keep yourself safe. 


In like manner, if the Spirit of God is warming your heart to pray in your moment of tiredness, even if you don't know why, you will be doing yourself much good to overcome your tiredness at such times and pray. How? Take a position that will make sleeping difficult or impossible for you. Then you will be able to pray and prevent what is coming or pray to receive from God what you need to make yourself ready for whatever is coming


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A TEST OF GREED 07/04/2024

“Then he said to them, "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions."” (Luke 12:15NIV)


Why does our Lord Jesus tell us to be on our guard against all kinds of greed? First, it is because a man's life does not consist in the abundance of what he has. In other words, God does not measure the significance of our lives on the basis of how much we have or what position we are occupying in life. Rather, He measures the significance of our lives on the basis of how seriously we take Him and how seriously we take His gifts in our lives. And this is the way we too should measure the significance of our lives.


The second reason the Lord tells us to be on our guard against all kinds of greed is that there are different kinds of it. Some forms of it are easily recognised. But some forms of it are not easily recognised. The ones that are easily recognised are usually easier to deal with. It is its forms that are not easily recognised that often end up quietly and slowly ruining our lives.


For example, as in the case that prompted our Lord Jesus to say what He said in our opening bible text, when a man is demanding for his rights, we will not say that he is greedy. And really, he may not be greedy. But the Lord says he is greedy, if he is willing to use any means whatsoever to have his rights granted. So, if you are willing to kill, manipulate or employ witchcraft or sorcery in securing your rights, whatever those rights may be, you are a greedy person. (Cf. Luke 12:13-15)


Also, there is a form of greed that is associated with choosing ahead of others or sharing things among others. And we may not know that we have this form of greed in us until we are in a position to choose ahead of others or to share something among ourselves and others. Then it just shows up in us, as we labour to choose what is better or best for ourselves without thinking much about the usefulness or worthiness of what we are leaving for others to choose or take.


For example, when Lot was tested with the very rare opportunity of choosing the place to live and farm before his uncle, Abraham, would choose, greed showed up in him. Yes, he was a good and righteous man. But on that occasion, greed did not allow him to reason that it was foolish of him to choose ahead of his uncle, the uncle who taught him everything he knew and because of whom he had become rich. Truly, it was his uncle that asked him to choose first. However, if this form of greed that I am talking about had not been quietly living in him, he would have rejected the offer and asked the man to choose for him. (Cf. Gen 13)


Unfortunately, it was in him and he did not recognise it. And it made him choose the good part of the land, without thinking much about the usefulness of the leftover to his uncle and without also considering the consequences of staying in a good land that was full of bad people. If his uncle, then, had not known God, he may have regretted for life his decision to let him choose first, even though he was the younger of them. And if God had not been merciful to him too on the day that He visited Sodom and Gomorrah with judgment, it was not only his wealth that he would have lost, he would have lost his life and all his family members as well. (Cf. Gen 19)


Now it is easy for us to judge Lot as greedy and disrespectful. But if we too will carefully check our lives, we may find that we are not at all different from him in some ways. When we too are tested with the privilege to choose ahead of our colleagues, bosses or elderly ones, do we show concern and respect for their interests at all? Even when it comes to trivial matters of sharing food in parties or some special functions, do we show respect and concern for others, especially our seniors or elderly ones? Aren't we often more concerned about getting the better or best part of everything for ourselves without considering how this will affect others or our own reputation? I am sure we know the answers to these questions.


In any case, the word of the Lord to us is this: “Be on your guard against all forms of greed.” Why? You may not know what form of it will someday ruin your life or faith or take away from you all that is dear to you. And my prayer is that God will rid your life of all hidden and obvious forms of greed that may be there, so that they will never again open the door of your life to satanic afflictions or God's judgment. Amen.


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EMOTIONAL STATEMENTS ENSNARE  06/04/2024


“Finally the opportune time came. On his birthday Herod gave a banquet for his high officials and military commanders and the leading men of Galilee. When the daughter of Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his dinner guests. The king said to the girl, "Ask me for anything you want, and I'll give it to you." And he promised her with an oath, "Whatever you ask I will give you, up to half my kingdom."” (Mark 6:21-23NIV)


When Herod was swearing an oath to Herodias’ daughter that he would give her anything she wanted, up to half of his kingdom, he did not think that the girl would, even in her wildest dreams, ask for nothing but the head of John the Baptist. But that was what she asked for. Now because he made his pledge publicly, he was under pressure to fulfil it. And he fulfilled it and joined the company of prophet killers.


But was Herod under any form of pressure to make that pledge? No! He made the pledge because he was excited. So, it was an emotional pledge, a pledge that he made without thinking clearly, a pledge he made when he was probably half-drunk, a pledge he made without considering the character of the person involved. So, he needlessly ensnared himself by his words and made himself a murderer.


Also, we have in the bible the account of a man named Jephthah and of how he made a vow to give to the Lord as a burnt offering whatever came out of his house to greet him, if the Lord should give him victory over his enemies, the Ammonites. Unfortunately, when he came back home, after the Lord had given him victory over his enemies, it was his daughter, his only child, that came out to greet him and to celebrate his victory with him. (Cf. Judges 11:29-40)


Now was Jephthah under any pressure to make a vow to the Lord at the time? No, he wasn’t. Yes, he was faced with the pressure of a war that he did not ask for. But the bible is also very clear about the fact that the Spirit of the Lord came upon him on that occasion to give him victory over his enemies. So, whether he made a vow or not, victory was already sure for him. 


Was it wrong for him, then, to make a vow to the Lord, as he did? No, it wasn’t! Making vows to the Lord is an act of faith in Him and should not be discouraged. However, making vows to Him is also a personal thing. It is not something anybody should force anybody to do or something anyone should do under pressure. That is because once we make a vow to Him, we are bound to fulfil it. Otherwise, we may just put ourselves in trouble (Ecc 5:4-6). 


Therefore, you must never allow anyone or any situation to drive or coerce or manipulate you to make any kind of vow to the Lord. Make your vows only because your heart wants to do so. 


But then, even if you have to make a vow, don’t make it on an emotional basis. Rather, make your vows on rational basis. In other words, think carefully about the kind of vows you are making and your capacity to fulfil them. Remember that you are not in charge of life and its affairs but God is. Remember also that accidents, mistakes and all kinds of unforeseen events happen everyday in this life. So, before you make a vow, first, make sure it is in line with the will of God. Also, make sure it is what you truly have the ability to make good. That means you must be reasonable in making your vows. That way, even if circumstances that are beyond your control should keep you from fulfilling your vows when due, God Himself will understand that is not your fault.


Jephthah made an emotional vow. He did not consider the will of God at all in making his vow. Would God ever accept a human burnt offering? No! Did He literally accept it from Abraham? No! In fact, one of the things He told the children of Israel never to do was to sacrifice their sons or daughters in the fire, for it was because of such things that He drove out the inhabitants of Canaan for them. (Cf. Deut 18:10)


So, it was totally out of place for Jephthah to make the kind of vow he made to God. In other words, his vow was dead on arrival – it was invalid from the moment it came out of his mouth. Why, then, did he make it? He made it because he was ignorant of the will of God for them. He made it at a time everybody in Israel did was what right in his eyes, not what was right in the eyes of God. Otherwise, he should have had people that would let him know that it was not in his place to make that kind of vow. (Cf. Judges 21:25)


Unfortunately, people still act like Jephthah and make invalid vows and pledges today. They make vows and pledges that are born out of their ignorance of the will of God for them. Also, people make vows and pledges without considering how they will affect those in their lives or the roles those in their lives could play in enabling them to fulfil their vows or in voiding them. Then, when it is time for them to fulfil them, they will realise that they have taken on themselves responsibilities that are too much for them to handle.


Now, of course, how Jephthah fulfilled his own vow will always be a subject for debate among God’s people. Did he truly offer his daughter as a burnt offering to the Lord? Or did he redeem her and offer something else to God in her place? We really would not know what he did, seeing that we were not there. But the lesson of his story is clear. And it is that we must avoid making emotional statements, emotional pledges, vows, curses, blessings and so forth, especially when we are excited or under pressure. Otherwise, we may end up ensnaring ourselves with our words. And if we do so, the price we will pay may just be too much for us to handle. 


So, be careful.


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PAYDAY IS COMING  05/04/2024


“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: with the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2Peter 3:8-9NIV)

What is Peter telling us here? It is that one main reason God’s judgment is often delayed is that He is patient. Sometimes we expect that when people sin or do something wrong, God should step in immediately and whip or flog them. But God does not often act like that. He is a patient God. And He is patient because He does not want the destruction of anybody. He says, “I take no pleasure in the death of the sinner.” (Cf. Ezekiel 18:23 & 32)

Unfortunately, some people now take that as meaning that they might ultimately escape God’s judgment. They are now of the opinion that they might ultimately get away with wrong doings. They have heard all kinds of things about God’s judgment. They have heard that He was a just judge, who would pay everybody back according to his deeds. But then, they have also been asking themselves, “If all these things are true about God, why has He not judged me for my misconducts? Why hasn’t He punished me?”

Some will even say to you, “You say that judgment is coming. How come God has not judged me for all my sins? Look at me. I am still prosperous, even though I am stealing and embezzling public funds. But look at you. You say that you are living for God, but you can’t even pay your children’s school fees. Look at you. You can’t even dress well. I am the one that is supposed to be suffering here. But I am not suffering. You call me a sinner. And I am fine with that, for I am not suffering.”

Now people like such think that they will ultimately escape the consequences of their sins. But they will not. It is unfortunate, however, that that wrong thought has made scoffers of them. Because of this wrong philosophy that they will ultimately escape the consequences of their errors, they now scoff at the things of God.

But if you are doing the wrong thing and have not yet faced the consequences of doing so, you are just enjoying the patience of God. That is what you are enjoying. And it is important that you turn away from your wrongdoings before it is too late. I tell you payday is coming. A day will come when you will pay for all your wrongdoings. And what you believe about this does not matter. It is the reality that you will have to deal with when the time is ripe.

(Adapted from ‘Days of scoffers’, a Sunday 15th October 2017 sermon by J.O. Lawal)


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HE CANNOT SIN 04/04/2024


“No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God.” (1John 3:9NIV) 


Now there are bible renderings that put this bible verse a little differently. For instance, the King James Version says:


“Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.” (1John 3:9)  


And New King James Version says:


“Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.” (1John 3:9NKJV)

  

As to be expected, people have built all kinds of doctrines on the part of this bible text that says, “He cannot sin.” But from the Greek rendering, the idea John is communicating is that the one that is born of God does not make a practice of sin. That means it is not in him to sin. It is not in his nature or character to sin. 


Mind you, when you compare what John says here to what he says in both chapters 1 and 2 of the same letter, you will see that he is not saying that a Christian cannot sin at all. For instance, in chapter 2, verse 1, he says:


“My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father – Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for ours sins, and not only for our sins but also for the sins of the whole world.” (1John 2:1-2NIV) 


So, John has it in mind that is possible for the Christian to sin. And since that is the case, how can he go on to say in chapter 3 that the Christian cannot sin at all? That will be contradictory.


Also, in chapter 1, he says:


“If we say that we have no sin, when we have actually done something wrong but insist that we have not, then, there is no truth in us. Not only that, we are making a liar out of God. But if we confess our sins, He (God) is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to purify us from all our unrighteousness.” (Cf. 1John 1:8-10NIV) 


So, that you have your heart after pleasing God does not mean that you cannot sin; it does not mean that you cannot err. Do you know what James says? He says from verse 1 of chapter 3 of his letter:


“Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways…” (James 3:1-2NIV) 


Now all this is coming from James. He says we all stumble in many ways. First, notice that he includes himself. Then, he goes on to say that we stumble in many ways, not in some ways. And if you will sit down at the end of your day and look at the things you have done and have not done, the things you have said and have not said, the way you have acted and have reacted, you will see your many faults and errors. Yes, you will see that you are probably not as nice as you think you are. 


But because of what Jesus has done for us, because His righteousness that He has imparted to us, we can walk blamelessly before God, knowing that the blood of his son Jesus Christ is purifying us (1John 1:7). So, don’t ever think that because people now consider you as spiritual or look up to you, you can no longer sin. If you are not careful, Satan will rubbish your life.


So, writing to the Corinthians, Paul says, “He that thinks he is standing should be careful, so that he does not fall.” Watch yourself, then. Otherwise, you may fall where you least think you can fall.



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YOU WILL DIE 03/04/2024


“Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation – but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.” (Romans 8:12-13NIV) 


Paul is speaking to the brethren here about carnality and spirituality. And first, he says that we have a responsibility; we have an obligation. See, every child of God has a responsibility. Some think that, having become Christians, it is God that will do everything for them. But that is not so. God indeed has His own role of making available for you everything you need for life and godliness. And He has already done that. It is now up to you to take advantage of all that He has provided for you to be the person He wants you to be and to do the things He wants you to do. 


That is why Paul here says that we all have a responsibility. And it is beautiful that he includes himself in this. He says, “We (all of us) have an obligation; we all have a responsibility, and it is not to live according to the flesh.” That means our obligation is not to walk in carnality. That is because to live in carnality is to live in the flesh, to live according to your senses, to live according to your feelings, instead of living on the basis of the word of God.


A child of God is expected to live on the basis of the word of God, not on the basis of his feelings, not on the basis of his emotions, not on the basis of what he sees or hears. So, those who are carnal are carnal because they will not live on the basis of the word of God but on the basis of their senses. You heard that someone said something about you and, instead of responding according to the word of God, you want to respond according to your feelings. So you say, “How could this person say such things about me?” Then you begin to feel bad and angry. And you want to respond on that basis. Well, if you eventually respond on that basis, then, you are carnal. 


Or you need money to do a number of things. And because of that, you respond according to your feelings and decide to steal or take something that does not belong to you. What is that? Carnality! 


But here we are saying that we have a duty, and it is not to live in carnality or to stay in carnality. If you live or stay in carnality, as Paul points out here, you will die. And we are not talking about physical death here but spiritual death. 


But someone may ask, “Is it possible for a Christian to die spiritually?” The bible says that it is possible. I know there are Christians who don’t agree that it is possible. But their opinion about this cannot change what the word of God says. 


For example, writing to the church of God in Sardis, the Lord Jesus says, “You have a reputation for being alive, but you are dead.” (Cf. Revelation 3:1) So it is possible, according to the Lord, for a Christian to die spiritually. And the point we are making is that if we refuse to deal with any form of carnality in our lives, before long, we will return to that state of deadness – we will die. Yes, before long, people will not be able to tell the difference between us and those who do not know God at all. If you, then, do not want that to happen to you, if you do not want to die spiritually, don’t live in carnality.


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THE COST OF DESPERATION 02/04/2024


“Now Sarai, Abram's wife, had borne him no children. But she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar; so she said to Abram, "The LORD has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her." Abram agreed to what Sarai said.” (Gen 16:1-3NIV)


What led Sarah to act the way she is reported in our opening bible text to have acted? Desperation! She was desperate to have a child for her husband, Abraham. And though God had promised to give them a child of their own, she just could not be patient to receive the fulfilment of the promise. Why? She was considering her age at the time. She had already passed the age of child bearing and her husband also had become an old man. In fact, he was ten years older than her. (Cf. Gen 17:17)


So, even though she believed God, she still felt that she had to do something about their childlessness before it was too late. That, of course, was because of her love for her husband. He had been faithful to her all the years of their marriage and had not gone after any other woman in order to have a child. Therefore, she must have thought that if there was anything she could do to make him have a child, apart from waiting on God, she would give it a try. That was what led to her suggesting that her husband sleep with her slave, Hagar. And the idea was that any child that came through the union would be hers as well, since Hagar herself was her property. Interestingly, her husband agreed to do what she had suggested, went in to Hagar and slept with her. And she conceived, as they had wished. 


But then, just when Sarah was beginning to think that she had won and that her move, carried out in desperation, had paid off, Hagar began to misbehave. Why? It must have been because the care she was already receiving from Abraham got into her head. So, she totally forgot her place as a slave in that house and began to see herself as her mistress’ mate. At least, she had proven that the problem was with her mistress and not with her husband. And “Who knows,” she must have thought, “I may eventually become the madam of this house after giving my master a child.”


Now do you know that situation could actually have made Sarah lose her home? There have been women who lost their homes in very similar situations. So, if her husband had not feared God and truly cherished her, maybe Hagar’s pregnancy would have given her a chance to go from being a slave to becoming the madam of the house. But because her husband feared God and also loved and cherished her, he allowed her to handle the matter as she pleased. So, she dealt so ruthless with Hagar that she ran way from the house. And though she was restored because of God’s mercy, at some point, she and her son still had to be sent away for peace to reign in that home. (Cf. Gen 16&21)


What, then, is the point of all this? it is that when we are desperate to have something or do something, we are likely to take just about any step without counting the cost. But steps taken in desperation often come with very serious consequences. In Sarah’s case, the step she took in desperation in order to solve her problem of childlessness almost cost her her husband’s love and home. Also, it turned her into a callous and cold-blooded person who was willing to do anything to save her home.


Therefore, before you ignore the word of God or common sense and take that step out of desperation, think about the cost. Yes, think about the likely consequences of what you are about to do because of your desperation. That step you take today may indeed solve your immediate problem or meet your immediate need. But will it not create more problems for you in the future, problems that may ultimately take away from you what you are so desperately trying to have or protect? So, you need to think carefully about this before doing anything stupid, just because you are desperate. 


And remember this: God is never late. So, as long as you trust in Him and are acting on His word, He will certainly make all things beautiful for you at the right time, even when all hope seems to be lost (Ecc 3:11).


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JUST ONE WRONG THING 01/04/2024


“Reuben, you are my firstborn, my might, the first sign of my strength, excelling in honor, excelling in power. Turbulent as the waters, you will no longer excel, for you went up onto your father's bed, onto my couch and defiled it.” (Gen 49:3-4NIV) 


Reuben, on this occasion, was supposed to receive a blessing from his aged and passing away father. But what he received instead was a curse. Why? According to his father, it was because he slept with his wife and defiled her. Was this true? Did he actually sleep with his father's wife? Yes, he did. The bible says, “Israel moved on again and pitched his tent beyond Migdal Eder. While Israel was living in that region, Reuben went in and slept with his father's concubine Bilhah, and Israel heard of it…” (Gen 35:21-22NIV)


Did you see that? Reuben actually slept with his father's woman. And who was this woman? Well, her name was Bilhah. She was the maidservant given to Rachel, Jacob's second wife, by her father when she got married. But how did she become Jacob's concubine or wife? It was Rachel that actually gave her to him, when she realised that she was barren and was not giving him any child. The idea was for Jacob to impregnate her, so that any child she gave birth to would become hers. Remember that Sarah did the same thing with Hagar, when she was desperate to have a son for her husband, Abraham. So, it was a customary thing at that time for people to act like that. (Cf. Gen 16; Gen 30:1-8)


That, any rate, was how this woman, Bilhah, became Jacob's wife and mother of two of his twelve sons (Gen 35:25). And from what I just shared about this woman, you should have no problem seeing that she was far older than Reuben. She had been in the house even before Reuben was born. So, it is quite unclear how the young man succeeded in sleeping with her. At least, we know that he did not rape her. We have rape cases recorded in the bible. So, if this one had been a rape case, it would have been recorded as such.


Anyway, my own thought, though you do not have to accept it, is that the woman seduced Reuben. She was the older one of the two of them, remember. She was, in fact, there when Reuben was born and had watched him grow up. So, if the boy ended up sleeping with her, the fault must have been majorly hers, not his. She must have been the one that sexually harassed him. And we hear all kinds of similar stories today, stories of housemaids sexually molesting the sons of their madams and of stepmothers sexually molesting their stepsons. So, it is not only men that are always guilty of such wickedness; women also are often found guilty of it.


Nevertheless, Jacob did not exonerate Reuben for sleeping with his own step mother, whatever the reasons may have been. That was because he was old enough to know that it was wrong of him to do so. Even if the woman was sex-starved, it was not in his place to quench her thirst. But he offered himself to quench her sex thirst, perhaps to test his own readiness for manhood. Yes, he did it once. But that one time of doing the wrong thing took away excellence from him and from his generation after him. His father told him that though he had been excelling, he would no longer excel. And that, of course, was it for him.


Now if Reuben had known that that one act would take away from him a lifetime of excellence, he would most likely have resisted every urge to do so. But he did not know. He did not know how terribly that wrong thing would affect his life. So, he gave in to it and messed up everything for himself. 


In like manner, we too can mess up our entire lives by giving in to just one wrong thing. It is possible that you know certain individuals who were once excelling in life until they took a particular wrong step or decision about their lives or certain relationships. And that was the end of excellence for them. They started going down and things started falling apart for them. If such people are not shown mercy, they may end up dying without ever tasting excellence again in life. So, if you will pray to God every day that He may keep you from doing anything wrong, it won't be too much at all.


 

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GIVE HIM NO OPPORTUNITY TO WORK 31/03/2024

“Don't give the devil any opportunity to work…” (Eph 4:27GW)


Among the things we don’t ever want to fail to recognise or utilise in life are opportunities. We want to recognise and utilise opportunities to demonstrate our talents, opportunities to make money, opportunities to attain some position of advantage, opportunities to do good for ourselves or others and even opportunities to punish our foes. And it is only the opportunities to serve God or to give to Him in some big way that we hardly desire not to miss or utilise. 


In any case, my aim here is not to address the need for us to identify and utilise our opportunities to do good and fulfil the will of God for our lives. Rather, it is to let us see that just as we are after recognising and utilising opportunities to better our lot in life, there is also one who is seeking opportunities to destroy and ruin our lives. And that is the devil.


For example, the bible says this about the way he once related to our Lord Jesus: “When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.” (Luke 4:13NIV) Think about that. Satan, on that occasion, tempted Jesus with three different things. First, he tempted Him with His appetite, but he did not succeed. Second, he tempted him with His position and power, as the Son of God, but did not succeed. Then he tempted him with the riches of this world, thinking that would work, but he also failed. Therefore, he left Him. (Cf. Luke 4:1-13)


But as Luke further shows us in that account, Satan did not leave Jesus permanently. He only left Him for a while. He left him until there would be another opportunity for him to tempt Him again and perhaps make Him fall. And that is telling us something about how Satan reasons and works. He is always looking for opportunities to tempt and hurt us. 


No, he may not consider today to be a perfect day of opportunity for him to tempt or harass us. But tomorrow may be. Also, the situation we are in now may not be considered by him as an opportunity to hurt us. But that does not mean that he has given up on hurting us. He never gives up on doing his evil works. And he never gives up on keeping close watch on us until he sees his opportunity to strike.


Now, concerning those recorded temptations of our Lord Jesus Christ that we considered above, Satan saw an opportunity to tempt Jesus when He went through forty days and forty nights of fasting. He came for him when he believed that, like most people, He would be feeling high, mighty and untouchable in the spirit. And if the Lord had been merely functioning on the basis of His feelings, He would have fallen flat on His face before this wicked and clever being.


Therefore, that we are regularly praying, fasting, giving or preaching does not mean that Satan will not be able to work in our lives. On the contrary, those very things we do and that we often pride ourselves in or put our confidence in may be the very things that will give him an opportunity to mess us up. So, first, as Peter tells us, we must keep in mind the fact that Satan is always on the lookout for opportunities to devour our lives (1Peter 5:8). Then, as Paul tells us in our opening text, we must always be careful not to give him any opportunity to work in our lives.


Now one major way not to give Satan an opportunity to work in our lives is to stay away from acts of the flesh. That is because any act of the flesh that we indulge in can be taken by him as an opportunity to ruin our lives or relationships. Anger, for instance, has given him countless opportunities to ruin several lives and relationships. Sexual immorality has also given him opportunities to destroy many lives, marriages and children. If we, then, do not want to open the doors of our lives for him to come in and freely work in them, we must desist from all acts of the flesh.


Another way not to give Satan an opportunity to work in our lives is to always resist him in prayer and with the word of God (James 4:7). The bible already tells us that we have authority over him and his works (Luke 10:19). But that will not stop him from testing us with evil. Remember that he once attempted to capsize a boat that was carrying Jesus and his disciples (Mark 4:35-41). And he can try something similar or worse with us as well. So, we too, like Jesus, must always be ready and willing to use our God-given authority to stop and frustrate whatever he is doing against us. Otherwise, he may not stop harassing us until he takes away everything from us, just as he did with Job. And may that not be your lot, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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THE COST OF DESPERATION 30/03/2024

“Now Sarai, Abram's wife, had borne him no children. But she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar; so she said to Abram, "The LORD has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her." Abram agreed to what Sarai said.” (Gen 16:1-3NIV)


What led Sarah to act the way she is reported in our opening bible text to have acted? Desperation! She was desperate to have a child for her husband, Abraham. And though God had promised to give them a child of their own, she just could not be patient to receive the fulfilment of the promise. Why? She was considering her age at the time. She had already passed the age of child bearing and her husband also had become an old man. In fact, he was ten years older than her. (Cf. Gen 17:17)


So, even though she believed God, she still felt that she had to do something about their childlessness before it was too late. That, of course, was because of her love for her husband. He had been faithful to her all the years of their marriage and had not gone after any other woman in order to have a child. Therefore, she must have thought that if there was anything she could do to make him have a child, apart from waiting on God, she would give it a try. That was what led to her suggesting that her husband sleep with her slave, Hagar. And the idea was that any child that came through the union would be hers as well, since Hagar herself was her property. Interestingly, her husband agreed to do what she had suggested, went in to Hagar and slept with her. And she conceived, as they had wished. 


But then, just when Sarah was beginning to think that she had won and that her move, carried out in desperation, had paid off, Hagar began to misbehave. Why? It must have been because the care she was already receiving from Abraham got into her head. So, she totally forgot her place as a slave in that house and began to see herself as her mistress’ mate. At least, she had proven that the problem was with her mistress and not with her husband. And “Who knows,” she must have thought, “I may eventually become the madam of this house after giving my master a child.”


Now do you know that situation could actually have made Sarah lose her home? There have been women who lost their homes in very similar situations. So, if her husband had not feared God and truly cherished her, maybe Hagar’s pregnancy would have given her a chance to go from being a slave to becoming the madam of the house. But because her husband feared God and also loved and cherished her, he allowed her to handle the matter as she pleased. So, she dealt so ruthless with Hagar that she ran way from the house. And though she was restored because of God’s mercy, at some point, she and her son still had to be sent away for peace to reign in that home. (Cf. Gen 16&21)


What, then, is the point of all this? it is that when we are desperate to have something or do something, we are likely to take just about any step without counting the cost. But steps taken in desperation often come with very serious consequences. In Sarah’s case, the step she took in desperation in order to solve her problem of childlessness almost cost her her husband’s love and home. Also, it turned her into a callous and cold-blooded person who was willing to do anything to save her home.


Therefore, before you ignore the word of God or common sense and take that step out of desperation, think about the cost. Yes, think about the likely consequences of what you are about to do because of your desperation. That step you take today may indeed solve your immediate problem or meet your immediate need. But will it not create more problems for you in the future, problems that may ultimately take away from you what you are so desperately trying to have or protect? So, you need to think carefully about this before doing anything stupid, just because you are desperate. 


And remember this: God is never late. So, as long as you trust in Him and are acting on His word, He will certainly make all things beautiful for you at the right time, even when all hope seems to be lost (Ecc 3:11).


 

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WE ARE THE HOUSE OF GOD 29/03/2024

“If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple.” (1Corinthians 3:17NIV)


Paul says if anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person. And don’t forget that when he is talking about God’s temple here, he is not talking about this building. You know Christians often get angry when their church meeting places are demolished or destroyed because they think it is the houses of God that are being demolished. Now I am not saying if there are ways God’s people can address such matters, according to the laws of the land, they should not do so. But don’t say, “Don’t you know you are destroying the house of God?” That is not the house of God. That place in which your church meets is not the house or temple of God. Do you realise that?

See, we may raise an imposing structure for our assembly to meet in. But it will not be the house of God. We may use millions of naira or millions of dollars to raise that structure. But it will still not be the house of God. You are the house of God. I am the house of God. We are the house of God. We are God’s temple.

So, as we see in our opening text, we are the ones Paul is referring to when he says, “If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person.” That means if there is anything you are doing that is destroying God’s temple, you have to be careful.

Again, I am not talking about littering our church meeting places or messing up with them. Sometimes, when we come around the meeting place of my local assembly, we find the whole front messed up by the students of the school on the other side of the road. And I know some may look at them and say, “Don’t you people realise that this is a house of God?” But even though it is wrong of them to mess up other people’s properties, our church meeting place is still not God’s house.

So, we should not say to anyone, “You are littering this place, which is God’s house. Do you want God to destroy you?” The truth is that God will not destroy him for that, for that place is not His house.

I remember something that Ray Stedman said along this line. He said that someone approached him after a meeting to report a sister, if I remember correctly, that was chewing gums while the meeting was on. The person said something like, “Can you imagine that she was chewing gum in the house of God?” And he said that his reply was, “What do you mean by that? It is the house of God that was chewing gums?”

But do you know that these are some of the things that infuriate us and set us against one another in our various Christian assemblies? Truly, certain things could distract us in our church meetings when they are not done decently. For instance, when some people chew gums, everybody will know that something is going on in their mouths. And that can be terribly distracting. So, I am not saying that it is alright to distract God’s people in their meetings. But to try to bring down judgment on people because of such things is to simply waste your time. That is because God does not think as man thinks.

Do you know that some even get angry when they see some ministers of the gospel drink water while preaching? They will say, “How can he be drinking water in the house of God? He is just too proud. He is arrogant.” But no church meeting place is the house of God. We are the house of God. We are God’s temple.

Therefore, we should not destroy one another. That is what Paul is saying. Don’t do anything that will destroy other brethren, for we are God’s temple. And if anyone destroys God’s temple, then, God will destroy him. Notice that Paul does not say that satan will destroy such a person. Instead, he says that God will destroy him. And that is because God’s house is sacred. His temple is special to Him. You are special to God. I am special to Him.

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WARN THEM 28/03/2024

“God will repay each person according to what they have done. To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honour and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; but glory, honour and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For God does not show favouritism.” (Romans 2:6-11NIV) 


Did you see that? For those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. That means they will face God’s anger and wrath. In addition to that, Paul says there will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil.


Now that is the plain truth. Trouble is coming. People may think they are facing troubles now in this world. But whatever form of trouble they are facing now is nothing to compare to what is coming. Yes, people agonise every day. And that is because there are no jobs, no money and nothing seems to be working well for many. Also, in many places, there are no good health services for people to access and enjoy. So, many people are indeed suffering. Many are in debt. Many are discontented. Many are in distress. 


But I tell you this: all the things that people are facing now, which they call trouble, are nothing to compare to what is coming. Paul says there will be trouble and distress for everyone who does evil. And is this a settled fact in your heart? 


Well, Paul says that this is a settled fact in his heart. And that is why he is warning those around him that are not saved, saying trouble and distress are coming for you, if you don’t believe the gospel and let it change your lives. 


Unfortunately, there are people who think, in preaching the gospel, we should not place our fingers on things like this. They will say, “You are scaring people by the things you are saying.” But people are already scared. We are just telling them the truth. Of course, there are ways you can say these things and really scare people; there are ways you can say these things and drive people away from the Lord Jesus. But when we are talking about the implications of rejecting the gospel, it is not basically to frighten people; it is to let them know the truth. 


In Acts of the Apostles, chapter 24, Luke tells us of Paul’s defence of his life and ministry before Governor Felix and the leaders of the Jews. And from verse 24 he says:


“Several days later [that is after the defence of Paul] Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish. He sent for Paul and listened to him as he spoke about faith in Christ Jesus. As Paul talked about righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and said, ’That is enough for now! You may leave. When I find it convenient, I will send for you.’” (Acts 24:24-25NIV -- emphasis added) 


Felix was an unbeliever. Therefore, Paul preached to him. And in doing that, he first told him about the Lord Jesus and the need to have faith in Him. Then he moved on to talking to him about righteousness, self-control and the judgment that is coming. And the man became afraid. 


Now was it Paul’s intention to frighten him? No! Paul was a prisoner. He was not holding a sword. He was not holding a bow and some arrows; neither was he holding a dagger. He was just preaching the word of God. Well, we are told that the word of God is sharper than any two-edged sword. And as Paul confronted this man with it, he became afraid. Why did he become afraid? The truth dawned on him; the truth came home to him. Did he eventually act on it? That is something we will find out someday in God’s eternal kingdom.


In any case, the point of all this is that if we too possess an understanding of what is coming upon mankind, we are going to warn those who are around us. You may not need to hold a crusade in order to do that. And you may not need to go from house to house in order to do that. You can start with those in your life or around you who persist in evil and are walking in unrighteousness. They need to know the truth. They need to know what God has done for their salvation and what will happen if they reject this offer of salvation. Therefore, the idea of saying people should not be told about the coming judgment or about what is coming upon the face of the earth is not scriptural.




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IF YOU WILL NOT WATCH YOURSELF  27/03/2024


“When the men were returning home after David had killed the Philistine, the women came out from all the towns of Israel to meet King Saul with singing and dancing, with joyful songs and with tambourines and lyres. As they danced, they sang: ‘Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands.’ Saul was very angry; this refrain displeased him greatly. ‘They have credited David with tens of thousands,’ he thought, ‘but me with only thousands. What more can he get but the kingdom?’ And from that time on Saul kept a close eye on David. The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully on Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the lyre, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand and he hurled it, saying to himself, ‘I’ll pin David to the wall.’ But David eluded him twice.” (1Samuel 18:6-11NIV) 


Now there are certain interesting things that are set forth for us in these few verses. First, we see how an evil thought came into Saul’s mind concerning David and how he did not watch it or do anything to prevent it from taking charge of him. Then, while that evil thought was gaining power over him, the evil spirit that had been tormenting him came in again to torment him. And when that spirit came to torment him, he began to prophesy. Just imagine that!


Today, people prophesy and we credit it to God. But it is not everyone that prophesies that is of God. It is not every prophesy that can be credited to God. Saul prophesied on this occasion. But it was the evil spirit that was tormenting him that was at work, not the Spirit of God. No wonder he sought to kill David, even while he was prophesying. (Cf. 1Samuel 10:9-12 & 19:23-24) 


Jesus says, “By their fruit you shall know them.” So, you have to look beyond what people say or claim to be to the fruit that their lives are bearing. Then you can tell whether they are of God or not. (Cf. Matthew 7:15-20)


Well, the point I am making is that if you will not watch yourself, the very people around you that you are supposed to keep may end up being victims of your fall. Because Saul would not watch himself, he was going to kill a young man that he was supposed to protect. But David was there to do him good. He was there at his service. The lyre he was playing was for his comfort. Yet he was going to kill him. 


Unfortunately, something similar happened to David too several years later. Because he would not watch his life, he allowed adultery to enter it. And afterwards, he found himself killing a man that he was supposed to protect. Uriah was one of his men. He was one of his loyal servants. I mean that this man was one of those people that would give their lives for him any day. Yet he orchestrated the man’s murder. This is why it is important that we keep our lives right first, if we are going to be of any help to our brethren. (Cf. 2Samuel 11)


See, one of the reasons many believers are unable to help anybody or be a blessing to anyone around them is that their lives are not what they are meant to be. When our lives are not what they are meant to be, there is no way we can be of help to anybody around us. So, it has to be about us first. It has to be about you first. When you get things right in your life, then, you can help other believers around you to get things right in their lives. The safety of your brothers and sisters depends also on your own safety. 



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DON’T BE AFRAID TO STAND ALONE IN RIGHTEOUSNESS  26/03/2024


Life in this world is never designed by God to be lived alone by anybody. That explains why God gave the first man, Adam, a woman, so that she would be a suitable companion for him (Gen 2:18-24). It explains why He has planted all kinds of wonderful people in our lives. And we must learn to cherish and to take all such people that He has put in our lives seriously. That is because they are gifts from Him to us, gifts given that we might enjoy life together.


But then, there are times that we may have to stand all alone in this world, even among members of our own family. And that is when the righteousness of God is at stake. For example, we are told in the bible of how Noah and his family stood all alone in all the world in the first centuries of man here on earth. Yes, they had to stand all alone in the practice of righteousness. And could that have been convenient or really enjoyable for them? I doubt. 


Nevertheless, Noah and his family did not allow the fact that every other person was contrary to them to discourage them from standing for justice, mercy, truth, love, forgiveness and all the other beautiful things that accompany God’s righteousness. They did not succumb to the pressure of immorality, greed, idolatry and so forth that pervaded the world of that time. Therefore, God, who knows every man’s heart, was pleased to show them His salvation when He came to destroy the whole mankind from the face of the earth. They were the only ones that were spared. (Cf. Gen 6-8)


Also, we are told in the bible of a young prince named Abijah who stood out for goodness in his entire household. This man was actually one of the sons of King Jeroboam I, the king who, because of greed and selfishness, led the entire nation of Israel back into the worship of idols. Yet, despite the wickedness, wantonness and idolatry that characterised his family, God had a testimony about him that he had some goodness in him. 


Now, of course, we are not told in the bible how good or upright this young man was. But God recognised the goodness in him, regardless how little it may have been. And because of that He gave him the sole privilege of receiving a proper burial among all the members of his household. All the others died miserable deaths. (Cf. 1Kings 14:1-19 & 15:25-30)


What, then, is the point I am making? It is that you should not be afraid to stand alone in the practice of righteousness. All the people around you may be bent on doing evil, bent on living immoral and godless lives. But you must not join them, regardless of how unpopular that may make you or what sufferings you may have to endure for saying ‘No’ to wickedness. That is because God is watching all of us, taking note of everything we are doing. And someday, He will show through those who have been faithful to Him that it pays to practise righteousness. Yes, a day is coming when He will, in the full glare of all men, make obvious the distinction between the righteous and the wicked. And my prayer is that you will be on the right side on that day. Amen. (Cf. Mal 3:18)



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DON’T GIVE HIM ANY OPPORTUNITY TO WORK 25/03/2024


“Don't give the devil any opportunity to work.” (Eph 4:27GW)


The bible is very clear about the fact that Satan is man’s chief enemy, and he is continually looking for someone to devour (1Peter 5:8). This is why we are warned in our opening bible text not to give him any opportunity to work in our lives. Unfortunately, out of ignorance of what the word of God teaches on how to handle life, many are continually giving Satan opportunities to work in their lives. So, they are constantly having problems that should never have been a part of their experience. 


See, even though Satan is a thief, devourer and murderer, there are things he cannot mess up in our lives, if we do not give him any opportunity to work in them. But when we keep taking steps that will give him a space to work, he will certainly come into our lives and work. And trust me, before we wake up from our slumber, much good may have been destroyed already.


For instance, there have been people who were sacked in their work places not because some witches got to them but because they mismanaged funds entrusted to them or because they were slothful. So, they were the ones that opened the door for Satan to come in and mess up their lives. And there are many of such people today who have not been able to get their lives straight since they were out of job. 


Also, there are businesses that are not doing well today not because life’s circumstances are against them but because the attitudes of their owners are wrong or because they have no skill or ability to handle what they are doing. So, Satan capitalises on their bad manners, lazy attitude or ignorance and uses it to frustrate them out of business and, sometimes, out of life.


For some others, it is in their homes that they are giving Satan a chance to work. It may be that they spend so much time with their jobs or businesses that they barely have time to care for their spouses or children. So, the enemy seizes the opportunity and begins to use it to upset things for them. Or it may be that they are continually going for things that are beyond their financial capability, all in the name of ‘taste’ or ‘quality’. And the enemy has been using that to keep them in financial bondage and disgrace. Unless they wake up and shut the door against him, they may remain financially handicapped for their entire lifetime.


In any case, my point, all along, is that it is important that we watch our lives to see that we are not our own enemies, that we are not the very ones calling the devil to come and mess up things in our lives.


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KNOW YOUR LIMITATIONS 24/03/2024


“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.” (Rom 12:3NIV) 


Look at that. Even in matters of the Christian faith, we are expected by God to function on the basis of the knowledge of Him and of His provisions that we truly have and not that we think we have. Otherwise, we may find ourselves trying to use our faith to take for ourselves what God has not given to us or trying to work with spiritual abilities that we do not have, either of which will put us and others in trouble. 


There have been individuals, for example, who, on the basis of certain spiritual knowledge or abilities that they thought they possessed, abandoned their secular occupations and went to start some ministry. But after a while, when much good had already been destroyed in their lives and homes, they realised that they had no abilities for what they were trying to do.


There have also been those who, on the basis of faith in God, started businesses that they had no abilities or resources to manage or who took loans on the basis of faith in God's ability to work some miracles to pay their debts. Then, months or years after life had become utterly miserable or difficult for them, they were forced to admit that they missed it. And who are they to blame for their misery? Themselves! Of course, they acted in ignorance. But ignorance usually doesn't protect people from experiencing the consequences of their actions or inactions.


So, don't be ignorant of the things you should know. And among the things you should know are your limitations, whether as they concern spiritual matters or natural matters. This will help you to function on the basis of your true capabilities instead of assumptions. 


The bible says, “As a man is, so is his strength.” (Cf. Judges 10:21) What this means is that you cannot give what you do not have; you cannot function beyond your abilities. Otherwise, you will often find that you are not making life easy or simple for yourself at all.


Now, of course, I am not saying that you should be lazy or slothful. That, in itself, will not make life easy for you at all but miserable. But I want you to know that people have driven themselves to death because they did not recognise their limitations. And people also have lost their business reputations because they would not learn to recognise their limitations. It may be that, out of greed, they took jobs that were beyond their personal abilities or staff strength and then messed up everything. So, they lost their peace and rest of mind and eventually their reputation. Perhaps you too have been there. Did you learn your lessons or did you not?  


Well, my point, is that, besides praying to God, there are things you can personally give yourself to in order to make life easy, smooth, meaningful, comfortable and enjoyable for yourself. And one of them is to know your limitations and function accordingly. It will separate you from carrying unnecessary burdens in life and ensure that you conduct your affairs, for the most part, with peace of mind.

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FOR YOUR FAITH TO PRODUCE RESULTS 23/03/2024


“He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on people who are ill, and they will get well.’” (Mar 16:15-18NIV)


Whom will the signs that the Lord speaks of in this text accompany? Believers! Those who have faith in Him! They will experience the miraculous power of God. 


But then, faith in God is not all that is required for us to experience or work the miraculous power of God. There are two things that our experience of His power depends on. The first is His will. What does God want us to have? What does He not want us to have? What does He want us to do? What does He not want us to do? And what are the things He Himself is doing? Our experience of His miraculous power is dependent on these things. 


Then the type of faith we have in God also has a great role to play in our experience of His power or in our ability to work His power. Faith in God always works, as we are shown in the bible. But the degree to which it will work is dependent on the type of faith it is, whether it is strong or week, great or little. 


In a nutshell, what I am saying is that if we know what God wants us to have, then, we can demonstrate faith in Him to have it. If we know what He does not want us to have, then, we will not bother exercising our faith in Him for it. If we know what He wants us to do, we can trust Him to supply us with the energy and resources to do it. And if we know what He does not want us to do, we will not bother to trust Him to make available what we need for it, for it will not work. 


Unfortunately, some think that once they have faith in God, they can move Him to do just about anything. But that is not true. Your faith can only work within the confines of the will of God. Your faith can only receive what God has given. What He has not given, your faith cannot access. 


For example, people trust God for salvation today, and they are saved. Why? It is because He has already provided salvation. If He had not provided salvation, then, it would have been useless trusting Him for it. Thankfully, He has provided it. So, we can trust Him for it. 


Furthermore, if we know what God is doing, then, we can align ourselves with Him in order to experience His power for our advancement or salvation, as the case may apply. So, knowing the will of God or the mind of God is important in order for our faith, whatever type of faith it may be, to produce results or to receive from Him. And you must not forget this.



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THE GOAL IS EQUALITY 22/03/2024


“Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality. At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. The goal is equality, as it is written: ‘The one who gathered much did not have too much, and the one who gathered little did not have too little.’” (2Corinthians 8:13-15NIV) 


Paul has been talking to the brethren in Corinth about giving to support other believers in a letter to them. And then he comes to the verses we have above and says, “Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed.” That is not the goal of Christian giving. So, when we are saying we should support our leaders, the idea is not for them to be relieved while we are hard pressed or for them to be enriched while we are impoverished. That is not the idea.


Unfortunately, this is the case in many assemblies today. Brethren that are struggling financially are still being pressured to give more and more. Why? They are required to support their ministers. And is that wrong? No! But if ministers are getting richer and richer through the support of the brethren and the brethren are getting poorer and poorer, something is wrong. 


Yes, there may be certain individuals in some assemblies that have access to lots of money. And such should be encouraged to be rich to God and to His ministers in a greater measure. But is it everyone that we can describe as rich in our assemblies today? Then is it every rich person in our Christian assemblies today that has become rich through legitimate means? We know there are many in the church today who are involved in all kinds of dubious things. 


In any case, Paul is telling us that the essence of Christian giving is not to impoverish some believers by enriching others. I was once in an assembly in which, anytime the pastor wanted to do his birthday, the brethren, many of whom were struggling with their lives, were still the ones that would be squeezed to get the money to celebrate him. But he was fine already. Why, then, did they need to impoverish the brethren in order to get him richer? Ignorance of the truth of Jesus!


Paul, in our opening text, says the goal of Christian giving is equality. So, when I support you, the idea is not for me to enrich you while I am hard pressed; rather, the idea is to create equality. That is what Paul means when he says, “At the moment, your plenty will supply their own lack, so that in turn their own plenty may supply your own lack.” 


The idea, then, is that when one of us is supported, he too will be able to support others. But all he thinks of is enriching himself with the support he is receiving and living like a king, he is wasting the grace of God. And a day will come when he will have to answer for that. But before that day comes, we too can ensure that we do not support anyone to promote their greed or selfishness. 


Have a very pleasant day.



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EXCEL WITH IT 21/03/2024


“…The large crowds listened to him with delight.” (Mark 12:37NIV) 


Whom did the crowd listened to with great delight? Jesus! Therefore, Jesus was not some boring teacher. Instead, He excelled with His teaching gifts. No, He did not teach to entertain the people. He did not teach them what their itching ears wanted to hear. He delivered the truth to them instead. And He delivered it to them in such a way that they listened to Him with delight. They just could not help doing so. In fact, the Greek word suggests that they were amazed to the point of losing control of themselves. That means they could not sit still while listening to Him. His words burned in people’s hearts. 


Furthermore, Matthew says that He taught with authority (Matthew 7:28-29). He did not teach like the teachers they were familiar with. They had teachers teaching them before Jesus came. But when He came, the people said, “This is a new kind of teaching, and with authority and power.” He taught like someone who knew what He was saying, not someone who was guessing. When He said something, that was the final word on that matter. There was no way you could revise what He had said; His was the final word of authority on every matter. He excelled with preaching.


You too may have teaching gifts, but if you do not develop them, they would not amount to anything. That is why sometimes we wonder where some have gotten the things they teach. And really there are preachers that amaze people today with the things they say. But those things, mostly, are not consistent with the body of truth we have in Scriptures. 


There are even those who will say something like, “I don’t study specially to preach. When I want to preach, I just open the bible and whatever the Spirit of God inspires me to teach on, that is what I teach.” They may quote Scriptures and say, “The bible says, ‘Don’t premeditate when you want to preach. The Spirit of your Father will give you the wisdom to preach.” But is that what the bible teaches? No! The bible indeed says that when you are being interrogated by your persecutors, you don’t need to premediate on what to say, for the Spirit of God will take charge and give you words to say to them. This, however, is different from when you want to teach the people of God. You have got to study to make yourself ready to do so. (Cf. Matthew 10:19)


Well, my point is that whatever your spiritual gift is, you need to excel with it. You need to work hard with it. Paul tells the Corinthians that he worked harder than all the other apostles (1Corinthians 15:10). Why he said that and the truth behind it we will find out someday. But when one considers the fact that this man was still writing letters while he was in the prison, he may agree with him. 


The word of God was in Paul, but he was locked away from people in some prison. Then he asked himself, “What do I do now? Okay, let me write the word and send it out.” And that was what he did. He started writing and sending his letters out. So, the prison walls could not cage him or prevent him from using his spiritual gifts. And today, about two thousand years later, we are still being blessed through the letters he wrote. That is excellence in ministry.


Now I am saying to you too today, whatever your spiritual gift is, you need to fan it into flame; you need to excel with it. Then, even when you are long gone, if Jesus tarries, generations after you will still be benefiting from the blessings of that spiritual gift. And may this be so, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


Have a fabulous day.


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FEAR PREVENTED THEM 20/03/2024


“That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, "Let us go over to the other side." Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?" He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?" They were terrified and asked each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!"” (Mark 4:35-41NIV)


This is a familiar story. Jesus was in the boat with His disciples and was sleeping. He was sleeping because He was tired. Then, when they had already travelled some distance on the Lake, a furious squall came against them and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly overturned. Yet the Lord was sleeping. He was sleeping while all this was going on. And what were these disciples supposed to do, knowing that the Lord was with them in the boat? Were they supposed to be afraid? No, they were not supposed to be afraid. What, then, were they supposed to do the death that was staring them in the face?


Well, first, they could have quietly woken Jesus up to tell Him what was going on, so that He could address the situation. Or they could have addressed the situation themselves. In fact, what the Lord expected them to do was to address the situation. That was why He later asked them, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Just think about it. They had the Son of God with them in the boat and were still afraid that they would drown. They had Him with them in the boat and were still afraid of death. 


Now it is true that they woke Him up. But they did not wake Him up because they believed He was up to the task of handling the situation. They did not expect Him to do anything to solve the problem. They simply wanted Him to be aware of the kind of danger they all were facing. That was why they were shocked when He addressed the situation and stilled the waves by the words of His mouth. And they could have done the same thing, for He had given them authority to do all kinds of great and beautiful things in His name. Yes, they had been given authority to heal the sick, drive out demons and even raise the dead. But they did not use it because they did not think that authority would work in that situation. 


Why? It was because they were afraid. And it was that fear that paralysed their initiatives. It was that fear that prevented them from seeing that the authority Jesus had given to them could be used by them to fix that situation. That fear prevented them from seeing that with Jesus in the boat with them the storm could not prevail over them or against them. 


In like manner, as long as we are afraid of the devil or of whatever challenge he may bring against us, we will lose our initiatives to resist him. We have been told to resist him and that he will flee from us, if we would do so. But many of God’s people are not resisting the devil in their lives today. Why? They are afraid. They are afraid that they do not have what it takes to handle him or that if they resist him, he will not go. And that is because they see him to be more powerful than the God in their lives. 


Now as long as you see the devil as more powerful than God in your life, you will not resist him. Then he can have a free day to work or operate in your life. Satan is not more powerful than God, for he is nothing but a created being. Satan does not have any power against the authority of our Lord Jesus that has been given to us. But he will continue to give us the impression that he has all the power and that there is nothing we can do to stop or frustrate him. And that is not what the word of God says. The word of God tells us that we can resist him. The word of God commands us to resist him. Ours, then, is to resist him, regardless of how enormous the challenges or problems he brings to us may seem. And when we do so, he will surely flee from us.



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WAIT FOR HIS TIME 19/03/2024


"He has made everything beautiful in its time…” (Eccl 3:11NIV)


One of the things most of us find difficult to do is life is to wait. Whether it is to wait for someone, an event, some resources or a position, we just don’t like to wait. That is because we want everything and everyone to run according to our schedule or timing of things. But that is absolutely impossible. I mean that it is impossible for everything and everyone in this life to move at our pace or according to our own timing of things. That is because we are not the creator of life or the ones in charge of life. The creator and author of life itself is God. Therefore, it does not matter what we and other creatures of His hands do, things will always go according to His own timing and never according to ours.


Now, of course, we are never happy when things do not go as we have them laid out or as we would want them to go. But if we will learn to trust God with our lives, He will, as Solomon tells us in our opening bible text, make everything beautiful for us at the right time. See, there is time for everything, as Solomon equally tells us in that great book, Ecclesiastes. And it is to the degree that we function with this mindset that we will access and enjoy God’s provisions for us and also attain the place He wants us to attain in life.


One of the reasons many are anxious today is that they are unwilling to function according to God’s time for their lives. The things they want for themselves may not be bad or evil. But they are unwilling to wait for God to supply these things at the time He has set for them. Why? It is often because they think time is going to run out on them, and they will never have their desires satisfied. And why do they think like this? It is because they are looking at the circumstances of their lives and other people’s lives instead of looking unto God. So, they give themselves to all kinds of things in order to have what they want and end up destroying much good and, sometimes, their own very lives.


Why did Moses end up being a murderer? It was because he was in a hurry to save his people, the Israelites. As the bible points out, he had sensed in himself that God was going to use him to save his people (Acts 7:25). And God, indeed, was going to use him to save them. But was Moses ready at age forty to save them? Obviously, he was not ready. Yes, he could see that things were really getting worse by the day for his people and that they needed help urgently. But it was not time yet for them to be saved by God. 


Now one of the things that showed that it was not yet time for them to be saved was that the one God was going to use to save them was not ready. He had not yet learnt at that time that his own power, might or intelligence could not save his people. So, he messed things up and had to run away for his life. It took him another forty years of his life, forty years of living as a fugitive and lowly shepherd, before God considered him ready for the task. I mean that this man had to come to an end of himself and see himself as totally unfit for the task of setting his people free before God saw him as ripe for the job. And it was then that his going back to Egypt to save his people was really beautiful and fruitful. (Cf. Acts 7:23-36)


Similarly, there are times that we are just not ready to handle what is coming or what we so desperately want to have or protect. And God knows this and expects us to patiently walk with Him or wait for Him until the set time. But if we foolishly and impatiently take matters into our own hands and act before we are ready, then, the results we will get will definitely show us that we should have waited for God.


Also, what about King Saul, the first king of Israel? What made God seek another person to replace him as king? One of the reasons was that he did not know how to work with God’s schedule. On one occasion, when he was supposed to wait for Prophet Samuel to come and carry out the sacrifice they needed to perform before going for a battle, he got impatient, when Samuel did not come at the set time, and carried out the sacrifice himself. Yes, it was true that Samuel did not keep to time on that occasion. It was also true that the circumstances were not at all favourable for Saul, for all his men of war were already deserting him. But what needed to be done was something spiritual, something beyond his understanding. So, he should still have waited for Samuel instead of allowing the things he could see and feel lead him to act before God’s own time and at the cost of his kingship. At any rate, because of his impatience, he lost the kingdom he was trying to preserve. (Cf. 1Sam 13:1-14)


In like manner, many are daily losing what they are trying to keep or win because they will not learn to wait for God. Waiting for God, of course, does not mean we are to sit down, fold our arms and do nothing about the matters of our lives. No, that is not what it means. God Himself does not want us to be idle. Instead, He want us to get busy with whatever legitimate things we can do for ourselves, based on the abilities, resources and people He has endowed us with. 


However, He does not want us to rely on ourselves, other people or anything we are doing for our advancement or safety in lives. On the contrary, He wants us to solely rely on Him for everything. And when we have done all that is within our abilities to do for ourselves, in accordance with His grace at work in us, we should allow Him to do that which only He can and must do for our lives to experience the promotion, prosperity, fruitfulness, peace, rest or salvation that we desire. And this is what Peter means, when he says, “So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor.” (1Peter 5:6NLT)


Did you see that? There is a right time for you to have or enjoy everything meant for you in this life. And as long as God is the one in charge of your life, He will not bring anything to you or take you anywhere before the right time. You may seek to take for yourself what you believe to be yours before the time set by God. Other people may also seek to do the same for you. But as long as the time God has set for you to have whatever it is you want is not ripe, even if you get it by pressuring Him to give you or by using some worldly or satanic means, your possession of it will ultimately not give you the satisfaction or joy you want. On the contrary, it may be the very thing that will ruin your life, joy or peace. Therefore, as Peter says, humble yourself under the mighty power of God, and at the right time He will lift you up in honour or give you that thing your heart is so much yearning for.



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WATCH HOW YOU FOLLOW THEM 18/03/2024


“At that time Abijah son of Jeroboam became ill, and Jeroboam said to his wife, "Go, disguise yourself, so you won't be recognized as the wife of Jeroboam. Then go to Shiloh. Ahijah the prophet is there — the one who told me I would be king over this people. Take ten loaves of bread with you, some cakes and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what will happen to the boy."” (1Kings 14:1-3NIV)


We have in the bible the story of King Jeroboam, the first king of the northern nation of Israel, that is, after God had divided the nation into two. This man was ordained to be king by God Himself. And He did this through the hand of His prophet, Ahijah (1Kings 11:29-39). But as soon as this man became king and was firmly established, he created new gods for the people and also personally ordained priests to serve them. Why did he do that? Was it because he did not believe in God, the one who ordained him king? No! Rather, it was because he was desperately trying to keep a kingdom that he did not give himself. (Cf. 1Kings 12:25-33)


And how many people are like Jeroboam today, who, in their attempt to keep or protect certain things that God has freely given them, get involved in all kinds of dangerous and harmful things. I am talking about people who get involved in sexual immorality, sorcery, theft, cultism or any other ungodly practice that they know is totally wrong for them, just because they want to keep a job, a position, a marriage or a facility. When all has been said and done, all such people will terribly have themselves to blame.


In any case, as the account of King Jeroboam goes, when one of his sons became very sick to the point of death and he again desperately needed to know what would become of him, he did not turn to the gods he created or to the priests he ordained. Instead, as we see in our opening bible text, he turned to the living God, the one who ordained him in the very first place. But why did he not go to his own gods and priests? It was because he knew that they were all fake, for he was the one that created them. 


How terrible! This man knew all along that the religion he established for his entire country was fake and lacked any capacity to bless anybody. Yet he manipulated the people to embrace it. And they too foolishly followed him. But when he needed real help for his son, he secretly sent his wife to the right person that could help. And how did God respond to that? He responded by bringing judgment and destruction on Jeroboam and the whole house of Israel that followed him in his nonsense. (Cf. 1Kings 14:5-18)


Now what does all this teach us? Two things! And the first is that it is dangerous to deliberately ignore or supress the truth for any reason. That is because we won’t be the only ones suffering for doing so – all the people that are misled or misguided because of our lies will suffer as well. And that in itself will make things much worse for us, when God is ready to judge (Luke 7:1-3). So, before you create that lie that you call a religion, an organisation or a concept, think well.


The second thing the account teaches us is to be careful how we follow people, even those who possess some legitimate or God-established authority over us. It was God that ordained Jeroboam to lead the nation of Israel. Yet he deliberately misled the people. So, the fact that someone is anointed or is authorised by God to lead you does not mean that he cannot deliberately or ignorantly mislead you. And once you are misled, the consequences will surely follow. 


This is why you need to take Paul’s words very seriously, which say, “Follow me, as I follow Christ.” In other words, we are permitted to follow people, regardless of who they are to us or how highly we revere them, only to the degree that they are obedient to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. In any area in which they are not obedient to Him, we are not under any obligation to follow them. Otherwise, though they will be punished for misleading us, we too will not be held guiltless for allowing ourselves to be misled. (Cf. Deut 13; 1Cor 11:1)


Have a great day.


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YOU ARE AFFECTING YOUR WORLD 17/03/2024


My prayer for you today is that the goodness of God in your life will continually overflow to your world in an unhindered manner in Jesus’ name. Amen.


Now, as you face the new day, I want to remind you of the need to watch your life and conduct among men. And that is because the things you do or do not do always affect others, that is, directly or indirectly, positively or negatively, greatly or slightly. Don’t forget that you are not the only one in this world. So, your actions and inactions are not affecting you only. They are also affecting every other person in the world. And somehow, they will equally affect those that will come into this world later.


For example, the disobedience of Adam in the Garden of Eden did not only affect him; it affected the whole human race. According to the Scriptures, it was through him that sin and death came into the world (Rom 5:12-14). And look at how people still battle with the dominion of sin and death today. Everything started with just one man. 


Likewise, through the obedience of our Lord Jesus Christ, life, righteousness and immortality are now available for all men (Rom 5:17-19; 2Tim 1:10). And you can look today and see the results of the life He lived, the death He died and the resurrection He experienced in the lives of many people all around the world. Yet He is just one man.


So, don’t ever think that how you live your life does not matter at all; it matters a lot. And whether you know it or not, there are things that are entering the world or leaving the world through you. You should, then, be asking yourself, “What is entering or leaving the world through me? Are they good things or bad things?”


Now I can give you several examples of how this works from the bible. For instance, we are told in the Scriptures that murder and fratricide entered the world through Cain. I mean that he allowed these things to come into the world through him. (Cf. Gen 4:1-6) Also, there was a man called Lamech, who, according to the bible, introduced polygamy into the world. While other people in his day, including some of his own descendants, introduced things that would benefit mankind like music and musical instruments, animal husbandry, blacksmithing and so forth into the world, he made himself the pioneer of polygamy (Gen 4:19-22). And you know what sort of tool polygamy is in Satan’s hand. He has used it to fuel all kinds of jealousy, bitterness, rivalry and wars in different homes and for generations. And everything started with one man. 


So, you may want to ask yourself again, “What is entering or leaving the world through me?” Are you someone that is introducing peace, love, joy, faithfulness, purity and contentment into the world around you? Or are you someone that is taking whatever peace that is left in your world away from it? Could it just be that the only things that are flowing into the world through you are trouble, impurity, chaos, bitterness, division, jealousy and murder?


Well, my point is this: you are affecting your world in very significant ways, whether you know it or not. So, watch your life and conduct very closely, to the end that they may be a blessing to your world. Don’t be like Achan, who troubled the whole nation of Israel through his greed and brought defeat, disgrace and death to his people (Josh 7). Instead, be like Abraham, the man through whom all the nations of the earth are being blessed (Gen 12:3; Gal 3:8).  


Do have a joyous day.



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THE LORD HAS GIVEN US ROOM 16/03/2024


As we are told in the bible, there was a time that Isaac, the son of Abraham, wanted to leave the place he was, which was Gerar, for Egypt because there was a severe famine in the land. But the Lord appeared to him and told him not to leave Gerar but to stay there for a while. And why? It was because He intended to bless and prosper him there. So, the man stayed. (Cf. Gen 26:1-6)


What is that telling us? It is telling us that a change of location is not always the solution to adversity. The solution to it is in God's revelation to our heart. As we are equally told in the bible, when Abraham found himself in a similar situation and decided to move to Egypt, God did not stop him. Instead, He prospered him in Egypt so much so that he left there with great riches. (Cf. Gen 12:10-20)


So, there are indeed times in which God may require a person to change their location or even vocation in order to prosper them or make them flourish in a time of adversity. But we have to seek His face in prayer and through the study of His word to know His will for us at such times. Otherwise, a change of location or vocation may not bring us the joy or delight we expect. Instead, it may end up turning our Naomi (pleasantness) to Mara (bitterness). (Cf. Ruth 1)


Well, in Isaac's case, God did not require him to leave Gerah, though there was a severe famine there, in order to prosper him. Instead, He wanted him to stay there. And he did stay there. But that God wanted him to stay in Gerah at that time did not mean that his prosperity would just happen overnight or automatically or that he would not experience any challenge there at all. He would have to work hard and diligently for him to experience the prosperity God had destined for him in Gerah. Also, he would have to be ready to trust God to deal with whatever challenges he was faced with while staying and working there. Otherwise, the fear of challenges may keep him in poverty for life.


Unfortunately, many don't understand these things. They think once God says that a place is good for them or that He will prosper them in a place, it means that they will not encounter any challenge there or that they will not be required to work hard and diligently for their prosperity to happen. But that line of reasoning is wrong and contrary to biblical truths. And anyone functioning accordingly will most likely find himself poor, wretched and unhappy, even though he is in a land flowing with milk and honey.


According to what we are told about Isaac, he did not just sit down and wait for prosperity to come, just because God had told him that He would prosper him in Gerah. Instead, he got himself working. His family business had always been livestock rearing. But he added crop farming to it. And God blessed this in his hands so much so that he became great and mighty in the land through it. (Cf. Gen 26:12-15)


Then, as we are also told in the story, the Philistines in Gerah did not relate to him kindly at all, as they saw him grow in prosperity (Gen 26:16-21). They were continually fighting him and his men and taking over the wells they were digging. But at some point, they all realised that they could not successfully fight against him and win or stop his growing prosperity. Why? It was because the Lord was with him. So, they stopped fighting him and decided to make friends with him instead. (Cf. Gen 26:17-33)


Now that is in agreement with the words of the Scriptures that say, “When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him.” (Prov 16:7NIV) Isaac was a man of God. That, however, did not stop him from having enemies. But because God was solidly with and behind him, his enemies eventually gave up fighting him and began to live at peace with him. That was why, in testifying to God's goodness to him in Gerah, he said, "Now the LORD has given us room and we will flourish in the land." (Gen 26:22NIV)


In like manner, inasmuch as you are where God wants you to be, He will make room for you to flourish there, regardless of the circumstances of the place or the hostility of those there with you. But you, like Isaac, must be ready to work hard and diligently. You must also be ready to adapt, change your vocation or add another line of business to what you are doing, if need be, and to trust God to deal with any challenge that may come your way. And will you be willing to do these things? Will you be willing to trust God for where you should be, to trust Him for what you should be doing with your life and to rely on Him to make room for you to flourish and be safe?




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ON ACCOUNT OF HIM 15/03/2024


“Meanwhile a large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was there and came, not only because of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well, for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and putting their faith in him.” (John 12:9-11NIV)


From what we see in Scriptures, every day is not only a day of troubles and God's judgment; every day is also a day of God's mercies and love (Lamentations 3:22-23; Zeph 3:5; Matt 6:34). And because every day is a day of God's mercies and love, we are able to experience His miraculous power in our lives every day. For instance, our waking up every morning, having slept for hours, is a miracle, even though we take this for granted all the time. Also, for us to move from one place to another, even within our neighbourhood, only God can tell the number of miracles He has to perform so that we may be safe. 


But then, even though our daily lives are marked with all kinds of miracles from God, there are some miracles that are able to change our lives and experiences forever, miracles that will make people take God our Father more seriously through us. For instance, as we are shown in our opening text, there was a time that a large crowd of people left their houses and businesses to go and see Jesus and a man called Lazarus. Why? It was because Jesus had raised this man from the dead.


As the account goes in John 11, Lazarus had been dead for four days before Jesus got to the town where he was living. In fact, there was already a bad odour coming out from his dead body at that time. Nevertheless, He demanded that He be taken to the tomb where he was laid. And He was taken there, for the dead man was an intimate friend of His. But what He did when He got there beat everyone's imagination. They had been expecting Him to just weep and sorrow there like all the others who knew the dead man had been doing. And He did weep, showing that He was human too. But beyond that, He brought the man back to life, right before everybody there. What a miracle!


Well, as to be expected, the news of this spread fast and wide. So, people everywhere that got wind of it started coming around not just to see Jesus but to also see Lazarus, the man who was raised to life, having been dead for four days. This, of course, got the religious leaders of the Jews upset. And they began to seek ways to kill this man. But why? As we are told in our opening text, it was because on account of him many were going over to Jesus and were expressing their faith in Him. In other words, the miracle this man received was so great that many people could not ignore it. They just had to go and verify it by themselves. And when they found out that it was authentic, they put their trust in the Lord Jesus.


Now don't you too want to receive that kind of miracle in your life? Don't you want to receive miracles so great that almost everyone who hears about it will want to meet Jesus? I want such miracles, as a living person, of course, and not as a dead person. And I want to believe that you too want them. But what will make us receive them? It is our faith in God to solve those great problems of our lives for us. 


When the Lord instructed that the stone that was used to seal Lazarus's tomb be rolled away, so that He could bring him back from the dead, the dead man's sister, Martha, expressed her concerns about the fact that doing so was going to be an effort in futility. It would only be emphasising the deadness of her brother, whose body would be bringing forth bad odour already at the time. Yet the Lord said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” And did she eventually see the glory of God or not? She did! (Cf. John 11:38-40)


In like manner, if we too will trust God to handle our problems or challenges for us, we and others around us will certainly see His glory. And see, the greater the problem or challenge, the greater the miracle or miracles God will perform in solving them will be. So, in a sense, if you want great miracles, then, hope for great problems. Then, however great those problems may seem, don't allow them to make you lose your mind. Instead, see them as your opportunity to experience some astonishing miracles from God, miracles that will make those in your world turn to Him for help and salvation. And as you cast those problems on Him by faith and through prayers, you will experience His glory.



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DON’T ACCEPT PARTIAL LIBERTY 14/03/2024


“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” (Gal 5:1NIV) 


Look at that. Why has Christ set us free? It is so that we may enjoy freedom in our lives. It is so that we will no longer be slaves to sin, sicknesses, diseases, poverty, barrenness, stagnation, superstitious beliefs and any other thing that is capable of making a mess of our lives. 


However, as Paul equally points out in that bible text, we too must be determined not to be enslaved by anything again. And what that means is that the things that our Lord set us free from will not just let us be and never attempt to enslave us again. I am saying that, as long as we are here in the world, sin, sicknesses, diseases, failure, barrenness, death, fear, confusion and all kinds of terrible things that Satan and his hosts bring about won't just let us be, all because we now say that we are Christians and have obtained freedom from them. They will keep trying to come back into our lives to make a mess of them. We are the ones that must refuse to let them gain access into our lives to make us slaves again.


Why do you think the bible tells us to resist the devil? It is because he is bound to show up at our door any time. He can show up in sicknesses, diseases, failures or temptations to do wrong things. But we can resist him. And we should resist him and refuse to be his slave in any way. I mean that we must not settle for partial liberty from anything that is from the domain of darkness, which is Satan's. Don't embrace or accommodate any kind of slavery in your life. What the Lord obtained for you is total liberty. So don't accept anything short of it.


When Moses went to confront Pharaoh with God's word to let the nation of Israel go, he was very clear in telling him that their liberty from Egypt was going to be a total one. And even though that wicked king, on a number of occasions, tried to talk Moses into accepting partial freedom, he would not give in to his tricks. Instead, he kept on fearlessly confronting him with the word of God, which, of course, was confirmed with all manners of signs and wonders, until he eventually gave the nation of Israel total liberty. (Ex 9:25-28, 10:8-10, 10:24-29 & 12:31-33)


Similarly, we too must continually and boldly confront anything that is trying to enslave us again with what God has said about our liberty, knowing that He will confirm His word with signs and wonders. But how are we going to do that, if we don't know what He has said about our liberty? 


So, if you and I want to succeed in standing firm in the liberty that is ours in Christ Jesus, we must make the studying of the word of God a priority in our lives. And as we do so, the Holy Spirit Himself will open the Scriptures to us and also strengthen us to appropriately and adequately apply them to the different situations of our lives.


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YOUR PRAYER DUTY 13/03/2024


“As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right.” (1Sam 12:23NIV)


Those were Samuel’s words to the children of Israel. He wanted them to know that he would be sinning against God by not praying for them, even though they were rebellious. And that was because praying for them was his responsibility as their leader. 


In like manner, there are people that we have a duty to pray for, as we are shown in the bible. For instance, it is our duty to pray for all our leaders, whether they are directly over us or otherwise, so that they may lead according to the will of God (Eph 6:19-20; Col 4:3; 1Tim 2:1-4). Also, it is our duty to pray to God for those that we are leading, whether at home, in our workplace, in the church or in our society, so that their lives may be what God wants them to be (Num 6:23-27; 2Chro 6:12-42; Eph 1:15-16; Col 4:12). 


It is equally our duty to pray for the prosperity and peace of our country, remembering the different categories of people in the land in our prayers (Ps 123:6-9; Jer 29:7). Then it is our duty to pray all kinds of prayers for all the people of God, as we are led by the Spirit, according to their requests and according to our knowledge of their circumstances (Acts 12:5; Rom 15:30-32; Eph 6:18-20; Col 4:2; James 5:14-16).


So, it is never God's design that our praying will be about us alone. There are all kinds of people that He expects us to continually support with our prayers. And if, having been made aware of this, we will still not pray for them, we will be sinning against Him. This, of course, will not be without consequences. And some of us that are discerning can already see some of the consequences of our sin of not praying for the people God wants us to pray for. We can see them in the instability, insecurity, poverty, rebellion, oppression and many other terrible things that are threatening our existence today. And if we will not repent of this sin, we may never witness in our lifetime the kind of peaceful, stable, sane and prosperous society we daily long for.


In addition, there may be times that God will want us to offer specific prayers for certain individuals or groups of people. For example, there was a time He wanted Abraham to pray for the household of King Abimelech of Gerar, so that his people would be healed of barrenness (Gen 20). And he was to pray for them, even though they had hurt him. Also, we see that He wanted Job to pray for his friends that had terribly hurt him with their words of judgment, so that His wrath would not come upon them (Job 42:7-9). Then we see how God showed Prophet Amos certain visions of what He intended to do to the nation of Israel, so that the man would have the privilege of interceding for her (Amos 7:1-6). Therefore, there are times that God shows us things about people in order that we may pray for them and save them from whatever trouble that is coming upon them or that they are in (Luke 22:31-32).


If God, then, wants us to pray specific prayers for certain people, just as I showed you above, and we will not do so, do you think He will hold us guiltless in such matters? If people that are supposed to live through our prayers die because we won't pray for them, how do you think God will judge such matters? Even if such individuals have hurt us or harmed us in some ways before, as long as God is asking us to pray to Him for them, we must do so. Otherwise, we will be sinning against Him and may even be shutting some door of His favour against ourselves. 


Abraham and his wife Sarah had no son of their own, though they were advanced in age. Yet, having prayed for the barren house of Abimelech so they could have children again, God visited their family too, and they had a son of their own. (Cf. Gen 20&21) Job's case was also similar to that. The moment he forgave his friends and prayed for them, God visited him with healing and restoration. (Cf. Job 42:7-17) And I am showing you this to let you know that it is not every time that what we need in life will come to us through our prayers for ourselves. There are times that the things we need in life will only come to us through our prayers for others. And as long as we are selfish in matters of prayers, we may never enjoy certain things God wants us to have and enjoy in this life.   

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THE SHIPS THAT NEVER SET SAIL- 12/03/2024


“Later, Jehoshaphat king of Judah made an alliance with Ahaziah king of Israel, who was guilty of wickedness. He agreed with him to construct a fleet of trading ships. After these were built at Ezion Geber, Eliezer son of Dodavahu of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, saying, "Because you have made an alliance with Ahaziah, the LORD will destroy what you have made." The ships were wrecked and were not able to set sail to trade.” (2Chron 20:35-37NIV).


We have very clear accounts in the bible that show us that carrying out investments or projects that will be successful in life is not all about having the resources and people to do so. It is equally about being led or guided by the Spirit of God. Otherwise, apart from the fact that we may end up losing our investments or projects or paying very invaluable prices for them, we may also never enjoy their fruit.


For example, in our opening text, we are told about how Jehoshaphat, who was a godly king, got involved in some project with Ahaziah king of Israel, who was nothing but a wicked man. What was this project about? It was about building some fleet of trading ships that they could both use to enhance their maritime business. And did they succeed in carrying out this project or not? They did. 


However, God sent a prophet to tell Jehoshaphat that He was going to destroy this project and make sure he did not profit from it. And that was exactly what happened. The ships never left their shores, for they all got damaged right where they were. How this happened no one can tell. But it did happen, and Jehoshaphat lost everything he had invested in the project. 


But why? Was it because God did not want Jehoshaphat to get better in his maritime business and increase in wealth that He allowed his project to fail? No! Rather, it was because he did that project with the wrong person; he did the project with someone that was operating under certain evil influences that were bound to make him fail. And if God had not predicted what was going to happen by the mouth of His prophet, Jehoshaphat and His people may never have known what was responsible for the failure of that project and the loss of their investment.


What is the lesson, then? It is that God is not just concerned about our lives but also about our relationships. So, it is not enough for our lives to be right before Him; it is also important that the lives of those we get into close relationships with are right before Him. Otherwise, they may continually be the reason our ships of progress or advancement will never set sail, not to talk of bring us great rewards. 


Is this, then, to say that we, as children of God, must not associate with those who are not children of God at all. No! In fact, the bible tells us that it is impossible for us not to associate with those of this world at all (1Cor 5:9-10). As long as we are in this world, we will always have one thing or the other to do with those of the world, who do not know God. So, we cannot totally excuse them from our lives. By the way, this is not just about those who do not know God but also about those who claim to know God but who are still living in wickedness, openly or secretly.


At any rate, as long as we are in this world, there are things we cannot get done without those who do not know God and even those who claim to know Him but are living contrary to His will. But then, there are things we cannot and must not do with them, if we do not want to fail miserably or be polluted. Some of these things are obvious because we are warned about them in Scriptures. For instance, we already know from Scriptures that anything we will do with an unbeliever or even a so-called Christian that will make us sin against God or become irresponsible in our lives must be totally avoided. 


However, there are certain things that may seem totally harmless to do with unbelievers or erring Christians. For example, building a fleet of trading ships with King Ahaziah seemed like a totally harmless thing for Jehoshaphat. But it ended up being a disaster. In like manner, doing certain things that seem harmless with some people may end up putting us in trouble because of their sins or certain evil influences at work in their lives. How, then, do we avoid that? It is by developing a culture of always committing everything, little or great, we want to do into the hands of God. That way, we can trust Him to always guide us into what is best for us and away from those things that will ruin us, even if they have an appearance of being the very best for us.


So, learn to always commit everything you want to do to God, instead of making your decisions solely on the basis of what you see or hear or your understanding of things. This will definitely keep you from facing problems that are never meant for you.

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LABOUR LOSS IS NOT HIS WILL FOR YOU 11/03/2024


“They will build houses and dwell in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. No longer will they build houses and others live in them, or plant and others eat. For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the works of their hands. They will not toil in vain or bear children doomed to misfortune; for they will be a people blessed by the LORD, they and their descendants with them. Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.” (Isa 65:21-24NIV)


We know what it means to give ourselves, our time, our skills and our devotion to something and not receive any profit in it. We also know what it means to put so much into gaining something and eventually losing it to some unexpected circumstances or not enjoying it at all. That is what is called labouring in vain or labour loss. 


Now there are many who are experiencing this in almost every area of their lives. They are working hard every day, so that they may increase in resources or influence and be able to make life better and more enjoyable for themselves and maybe their family. Yet, through some twist of circumstances, there has not been much to show for their years of hard labour. It is not improving the quality of life they are living or the quality of enjoyment of life they are having. And this has brought frustration and depression into their lives. It has even led some to run away from their responsibilities or to take their own lives.


Perhaps you too have observed that your labour of many years has not brought much visible or tangible improvement to the quality of life you are living. You need to know that it is not the will of God for things to be so with you. So, don’t accept it as normal or ignore it, even if that is the case with many around you. And don’t allow it to ruin your character, destroy your relationship with God or people or drive you crazy. Instead, take the situation up with God in prayers, and He will answer you and put an end to every form of labour loss you may be experiencing. 


Look at our opening Scripture. What is there is a revelation of God’s will for us in all our legitimate labour. And as He clearly shows us, it is not His will for us to labour over anything and not enjoy it at all, neither is it His will for us to labour over something and it is some other people that will be enjoying the fruit of it. In fact, it is not His will for us to have children that we will not enjoy or to even pray in vain and not receive answers. 


Since that, then, is the case, we must no longer accept any form of labour loss in our lives, beginning from today. Instead, we must continually ask God to fulfil His promise to make us fruitful with our labour and to also make us enjoy the fruit of our labour for as long as we are here on earth. And as we learn to do this, we will begin to see a mighty release of His power for true enjoyment in every area of our lives.


Cheers!

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YOU ARE MEANT TO FLOURISH  10/03/2024


It is a fact that these are difficult times for people all around the world. These are times in which insecurity is a major threat to the existence of mankind. They are also times in which many are struggling to feed and to take care of several basic needs of life. Even among those that appear to be living fine and large are many that have already mortgaged their future and that of their children through different kinds of loans they have taken from various financial institutions. 

 

Nevertheless, God’s promise to His people is to make them flourish, regardless of how hard or hostile the conditions of living in this world may become. So, as you journey through this month and through the remaining part of this year, I want you to hold on to His word that says:


“The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; planted in the house of the LORD, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, "The LORD is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him."” (Ps 92:12-15NIV)


Look at that. God says that His righteous ones will flourish like palm trees and like cedars of Lebanon. Now you can do some personal studies on these trees, and you will find that they are special among all trees. They are evergreen. They are strong and are able to thrive in the face of adverse conditions. Also, they, especially palm trees, are useful in many ways. And in many cases, they are able to survive a number of generations of men, if we do not remove them.


Now God says His righteous ones can be likened to these trees. They too will flourish before Him, regardless of what circumstances they are faced with in this life. Also, He says they will stay fresh, green and fruitful, even when they are old. Don’t you like this? Well, I love it. I love to stay fresh, green, fruitful and useful, even when I am old. And, if Jesus tarries, I am going to, for I am God’s righteousness in Christ Jesus. So, this promise is for me and for my household.


What about you? Are you God’s righteous man or woman? Are you one of those who have by faith obtained the righteousness of God that is in Christ Jesus? If you are, then, this promise of God is for you too. And you can lay claim to it. Yes, you can daily declare in the name of Jesus, “I flourish in this land everyday like a palm tree and grow stronger and stronger like a cedar of Lebanon. And regardless of the conditions I am confronted with in life, I will remain fresh, green, productive, useful and relevant, as a member of the family of God in this world.” And may God’s power to flourish in the face of adversity continually be released in your life and through your life, in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.


Have a fabulous day.

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LIVE A LIFE OF THANKSGIVING  09/03/2024


“But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today.” (Deut 8:18NIV) 


Who said those words? It was Moses the man of God. Why did he say them? He said them because he knew that it was possible for the Israelites to forget God and what He meant to them. He knew that it was possible for them to enter the Promised Land and, after a while, begin to think their strength, righteousness or wisdom was responsible for their success and wealth. So, he said, “Don't ever forget that the one responsible for whatever good thing you end up having or accomplishing is God.” And he said that to them so that they would learn to acknowledge God and be thankful to Him.


Now, in order for us to cultivate a heart of thankfulness to God, it is important that we identify for ourselves the things that often keep us from thanking Him. We can understand it if those who don't know God do not see any reason to thank Him at all. But I am not addressing those who don't know or believe God here; rather, I am addressing everyone who claims to know God and to have a relationship with Him. And I am saying that it is important that he identify what those things are that are keeping him from being thankful to God as it is expected of him, so that he may deal with them. 


One of those things that often keep us from being thankful to God is lack of contentment. When all that we are concerned about is what we don't have and how we are going to have them at all cost, there is every tendency that we may not see any need to thank God for what we already have. 


Another thing that can also keep us from being thankful to God is lack of thoughtfulness. It takes thoughtfulness to be thankful to God or to men. If we can regularly consider where we are and where we are coming from and also consider what we are, what we used to be and what we have passed through, there is no way we will fail to see great reasons to thank God. 


There will always be greater heights for us to attain in this life, as long as there is breath in us. And there also will always be people that seem to be ahead of us or to be doing better than us. But instead of griping or complaining to God about those things we are yet to have or accomplish, we should first learn to thank Him for the ones we already have and are.


Furthermore, we can get so excited about what God has done for us or is doing for us and what we are going to do with it that we totally forget to thank Him. That was what happened to nine of those ten lepers that the Lord healed of their leprosy. They got so excited about their healing and what life would henceforth mean for them that they totally forgot to return to thank the Lord immediately for what He had done for them. Only one of them returned immediately to thank Him. And to say the least, their ingratitude displeased Him. (Cf. Luke 17:11-19)


We all know how most animals act when we give them food. Out of excitement, they will just jump on it and start eating, especially when they are very hungry. They will not thank us or commend us for anything. And that is because they are unintelligent. But we are intelligent beings. We can consider things and think about them. So, even though we can thank God anytime for His goodness to us, as intelligent people, the right thing for us to do is to first thank Him immediately we receive anything from Him. And we are always receiving from Him. There is no moment that passes that we don't receive something good for our lives from Him, even though we are not often aware of this. This is why we are admonished in the Scriptures to give God thanks always and in everything (Eph 5:20; Col 3:17; 1Thess 5:18; Heb 13:15). In other words, we are to live a life of thanksgiving to God, for that is His will for us.

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YET I WILL REJOICE IN THE LORD 08/03/2024


“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.” (Hab 3:17-18NIV)


Do you know that there are people who are still loaded with pains and grieves because of their failures, miseries and misfortunes in the years that were gone? Yes, there are people who are still totally disappointed and distressed because they really have nothing to show for all their hard labour and devotion of the years gone. And such people may be wondering now if there is anything at all for them this year; they may be wondering if there is any need for them to devote themselves to any kind of honest labour again this year.


Well, if you are one of such people, the words of Prophet Habakkuk, which we have in our opening scripture, are for you. And as we can deduce from what he says, this man, at the time he said these words, was battling with very obvious failure and lack, which had come upon him as a result of the insecurity problems that his land was facing. I mean that he said these words at a time nothing seemed to be working or going on well for him or anybody in his country. Their crops were not doing well. So their food stores were empty, and they were all living in hunger. Also, their animals were all gone. So there was no milk, cheese or meat for anybody to refresh himself with. It was indeed a time of depression and agony for them.


Nevertheless, this man of God said to himself, “I refuse to pay attention to the ugliness of our conditions. I refuse to allow our failures, misfortunes, miseries and pains to take away my joy. And that is why I am going to rejoice in the Lord. Yes, I will be joyful in God my saviour.” Look at that. Habakkuk would not allow the ugly situations he found himself in to rob him of joy. He would not allow the seemingly horrible circumstances of his life to keep him down or render him useless. Instead, he chose to rejoice. 


But, then, you must understand that this man's rejoicing is not baseless. His rejoicing is not the foolish rejoicing of a drunkard, who thinks he can drink away his sorrows and pains, when he is in fact multiplying them. And his rejoicing is not the rejoicing of some optimistic dreamer, who is just hoping that all things will turn around for his good by themselves, when the truth is that bad things don't become good by themselves, just as good things don't become bad by themselves – there are forces that make these things happen. Instead, his rejoicing is in the Lord, the God of the heavens and the earth. Yes, his rejoicing is in the Lord, the only one with the power to turn the ugliest of situations around for man's good. And that is why he goes on to say, “The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.” (Hab 3:19NIV)


Look at that. Habakkuk recognised God as his strength. He recognised Him as his ability to walk in victory over all the difficult situations he and his people were confronted with. No wonder he chose to praise Him instead of allowing those bad situations to make him weak, useless and redundant. 


In like manner, you also must not allow the failures, miseries, misfortunes and pains of the year or years that are gone reduce you to a weak, useless and redundant person this year. And you must not allow them to turn your eyes away from God or lead you to follow dishonest or diabolical ways to get your life straightened out. That will never be to your advantage. Instead, fix your eyes on God and, like Habakkuk, keep on rejoicing in Him, in spite of your ugly circumstances. Yes, keep on rejoicing in Him like Paul, who, though was in the prison, wrote to the Philippian-Christians and said, “In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy…” (Phil 1:4NIV) In addition, he said, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Phil 4:4NIV) 


Now, as you begin to rejoice in the Lord this year, regardless of how bad things are for you at the moment, I assure you that you will certainly find in Him the strength, wisdom, courage, favour and support you require to walk in victory over all your challenges and be freed from every kind of depression. It is well with your soul.



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UNLIMITED ACCESS TO GOD 07/03/2024


“…I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6NIV) 


Now this is a statement that many have had trouble accepting. They just don't think it is right for anybody to make bold to say such things. “How can you say that it is only through you that people can access God?” they will say. “What about the other ways that people are taking to access God? Are you saying that those ways are no ways at all or that they are nothing?”


Well, that is exactly what the Lord Jesus is saying. He is saying that unless you come through Him, you cannot truly and fully access God. Yes, without Him, you may be able to approach and access God in some ways. But if what you want is unlimited, unrestricted and real access to God and all that He represents, you have to go through the Lord Jesus Christ. And why is that? It is because He is the only one that knows God truly, fully and thoroughly. So, He is the only one that can fully and truly make God and His will known to us. (Cf. Matt 11:27, John 17:1-3)


In any case, my point is that through Jesus Christ we can now enjoy unlimited and unrestricted access to God (Eph 3:12; Heb 4:14-16). But someone may say, “If what you are saying is true, if truly I now have unlimited and unrestricted access to God, through Jesus Christ, how come I am still unable to see God face to face and pour out my heart to Him?” Good question! And the answer is this: the fact that you are unable to see God physically or face to face does not mean that you do not have unlimited and unrestricted access to Him through Christ Jesus.


See, whether we see God physically or not, He is ever present with us. His words to us are: “I will never ever leave you nor forsake you.” (Cf. Heb 13:5) So, He is always with us, in us and all around us. Actually, I can compare His presence with us to that of the air we breathe in. Though 'air' is invisible, yet it is with us, in us and all around us. So, we do have unrestricted and unlimited access to it. And that, in fact, is why we are still alive.


I have pointed this out to you so that you will never again doubt the quality of access to God that is available to us in Christ Jesus. The question, then, is, “What are we to do with the access we now have to God?” We are to take advantage of this access to become all that we can be in Him and have all that we can have in Him.


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LEARNING TO PRAY FOR OUR LAND 06/03/2024


“May our sons be like full-grown, young plants. May our daughters be like stately columns that adorn the corners of a palace. May our barns be filled with all kinds of crops. May our sheep give birth to thousands of lambs, tens of thousands in our fields. May our cattle have many calves. May no one break in, and may no one be dragged out. May there be no cries of distress in our streets.” (Ps 144:12-14GW)


As citizens of this country, it is important that we look beyond our problems and predicaments and begin to talk to God about what we want to see in our land. And when I am talking about praying to God about our nation, we must learn to be specific, as we pray. What I am saying is that our prayers for the country must go beyond saying things like, “God bless Nigeria!” Yes, of course, I want God to bless Nigeria. But in what areas should He bless Nigeria? And what kinds of blessings should He bring upon Nigeria?


In our opening text, for instance, we find King David praying for his nation, Israel. And when you look at the contents of his prayers for his land, you will see that he is very specific about what he wants God to do for them. First, he prays for their sons and young men. He prays that they will flourish in the land, that is, they will excel in all their honest endeavours. Second, he prays for their daughters and young women. And that is interesting to note. This king does not want their girls and young women to become liabilities in the land, as it is the case in many places, even today. So, he prays that God will make them pillars that will support and beautify the land. That means they will not be redundant or useless in the land but will be a vital and integral part of the growth, development and establishment of the land.


Third, David prays for their farms and livestock. He prays that God's blessings will be on their farms so that their stores will overflow with all kinds of crops. That way, there will be more than enough food for the people to eat and to export. And he prays that their livestock will be fruitful and productive, so that there will be an overflow of milk for the people to drink and abundance of meat for them to eat and to export.


Fourth, David prays against theft, robbery, terrorism, war, invasion of the land and anything (accidents, fire incidents, floods, outbreak of diseases, earthquakes and so on) that could lead to cries of distress in the country. That is what he means when he says, “May no one break in, and may no one be dragged out. May there be no cries of distress in our streets.”


Now the things David prays about here are not the only things we can pray about for our land—there are many more things we can pray about. But these ones have been written down as examples for us that we may learn from them and begin to practise them. (Cf. Rom 15:4)


Shall we then begin to practise these things? Shall we begin to tell God specific things that we want Him to do for specific groups of people in our midst and about specific things in our land? If we will start doing this, I tell you, not only are we going to begin to experience tremendous operations of God in our land, we will also begin to have our eyes opened by the Spirit of God to see several other things we can change in our land through our prayers.


My prayer is that the Holy Spirit will awaken our hearts to the practice of these truths, in Jesus' name. Amen.


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HE WILL HEAL OUR LAND 05/03/2024

"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2Chron 7:14NIV)


The situation of our country today is a clear proof that it is possible for one to be in a land of plenty and still experience lack and that it is possible to be in land that is flowing with milk and honey and still live in hunger. Or why exactly have we had government after government, administration after administration and leaders after leaders, and most of our problems still remain unsolved, despite the blessedness of our land? 


Now, growing up, there was a time I was made to believe that the military was the main source of our problems in this country and that, if we could just get them out of the way, it would be heaven on earth for us. And by the help of God, we did get the military out of the way and install a new civilian government. However, in the last twenty four years or so, it has not been heaven on earth for us at all, that is, as nation. On the contrary, things have gone from bad to worse for us. And we are now beginning to see that the military was not really our problem after all; we ourselves, as a people, are our own problem. 


Unfortunately, we have not yet recognised or seen that. So, all we have done was to move away a little from blaming the military for our plight to blaming political parties, political leaders, administrative styles, regional leaders, sectional leaders, religious leaders and even our colonial masters. Only God knows who we are going to blame next – perhaps our unborn babies.


In any case, the truth is that the blame game we are playing is not going to get us anywhere. I am saying this blame game is not going to get us out of the current recession we are in or pull us out of our national bankruptcy. We all are to be held responsible for our present predicament; we all are to blame for the illness of our nation. And if we do not want to see the death of this nation in the next few years, we all, especially those of us who know the living and true God, must lay aside our pride and seek His face, so that we may obtain His mercy and find His immeasurable grace to help us in this time of need. (Cf. Heb 4:16)


Now He (God) Himself is waiting for us to realise our folly and our inadequacy in solving our own problems and then turn to Him. That is why, in our opening text, He lovingly and mercifully instructs us on what we need to do in order for Him to heal our land. And what are those things that we need to do? First, we are to humble ourselves before God. That means we are to let go of our pride and confidence in the flesh and submit ourselves to God's authority. We must understand that no human being, no matter how smart, sound, intelligent and well-meaning he may be, can take our nation out of this misery, if God does not aid him. So, enough of all our small talks and our boasting in human beings! The only one we should boast in is the Lord. (Cf. Ps 127:1, 146:3-4, Prov 3:5-8, Jer 9:23-24, 1Cor 1:31, 3:19-21, Phil 3:3, James 4:6-7, 1Pet 5:5-6)


Second, we are to pray to God. That means, instead of complaining and murmuring, we are to tell God exactly what we want Him to do for our nation. Do we have any beautiful picture of what our country should look like in mind? Then let us begin to show that picture to God in prayers. He is able to do for us immeasurably more than we can ever ask for or think of. (Cf. Eph 3:20, Phil 4:6)


Third, we are to seek God's face and turn from our wicked ways. It is good and important that we keep on praying to God about the situation of our country. But that is not sufficient. We must also seek to please God in all that we do and turn from our wicked ways. That means I must desist from all my acts of wickedness and begin to pursue and do only those things that make God happy. And you too must do likewise. Otherwise, no matter how much we pray and fast for our country or our own homes, we will not experience much good.


Well then, God tells us that when we have done these things, He also will do two major things for us. First, He will forgive us our sins. Second, He will heal our land, that is, He will end our barrenness and unfruitfulness and put an end to our miseries and woes. And may these things be our experience, even as we obey the voice of the Lord, in Jesus' name. Amen.


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WHEN WISDOM IS NOT ENOUGH 04/03/2024


“Here is another bit of wisdom that has impressed me as I have watched the way our world works. There was a small town with only a few people, and a great king came with his army and besieged it. A poor, wise man knew how to save the town, and so it was rescued. But afterward no one thought to thank him. So even though wisdom is better than strength, those who are wise will be despised if they are poor. What they say will not be appreciated for long.” (Eccl 9:13-16NLT)


When you read the writings of Solomon, that is, with the mind of the Spirit of God, you will not fail to see that he understood how this world works. Without doubt, he was a very wise man. In fact, the bible says that the wisdom God blessed him with was as measureless as the sand on the seashore (1Kings 4:29-34). And having tasted the reward of being wise, he counsels all men to price wisdom above all things, saying “Wisdom is the principal thing. Therefore, get wisdom. And though it costs you everything you have, get understanding.” (Cf. Prov 4:7) 


So, if you sense that wisdom is lacking in your life or in the way you are handling certain matters of your life, do not hesitate to seek it. And the only place to find it is in God. Yes, the only way to be wise in life is to take God seriously and to also count on Him to make our hearts wise. (Cf. Job 28:28; Ps 111:10; 1Cor 1:30; James 1:5-8)


But then, this man, Solomon, as he investigates life and how to make sense out of it, discovers that wisdom is not sufficient for us to win people’s respect or attention. There are some others things we must have as well, if we want the people of this world to take us seriously. And one of them is wealth. 


Now is wealth better or greater than wisdom? No! Yes, as Solomon equally points out elsewhere in his writings, both money and wisdom can shelter us from all kinds of life’s problems. However, wisdom is better because it is able to preserve the life of the one who has it, even where money has failed. (Cf. Ecc 7:12)


Nevertheless, as we see in our opening text, Solomon counsels us not to desire wisdom alone but to desire money along with it. Why? It is because, as far this world is concerned, people often take more seriously rich foolish people than poor wise people. And he gives us an illustration to support this. He speaks of a situation that he personally witnessed. It was that of a poor man that used his wisdom to save a town from a mighty king that had come to attack it. But after that incident, nobody remembered that poor man. They just totally forgot about him and all that he did for them.


Therefore, Solomon says, “Even though wisdom is better than strength, those who are wise will be despised if they are poor. What they say will not be appreciated for long.” And is this not the reality? Well, I myself can confirm that it is the reality, not just in the world but even in the church of God. See, I have been in assemblies where brethren that are full of the Spirit of God and wisdom to edify God’s people don’t have a voice at all. Nobody listens to them or takes them seriously. Why? It is because they don’t have money. 


I am saying that I have been in assemblies of God’s people where your money has to speak for you before you can even book an appointment with your pastors. And I have also been in assemblies where people who have no character whatsoever can become anything, even a pastor, as long as they are rich and are willing to use their money for the church. Is this supposed to be happening in the church? No! However, that is the way the world works. And as long as the church keeps trying to function according to the ways of the world, such things will not stop happening among us.


Now then, if in the church of God, we see many taking money more seriously than wisdom or righteous living, what do you think the case will be among those of this world? Even worse! And this explains why we have many rich fools in leadership positions all around the world today. See, people are not going to listen to you or accept you as their leader just because you are wise; rather, they are going to do so because you have enough money to do things that will get their attention and make them believe you can deliver, even where you lack the capacity to do so.


Why did many come from different parts of the world to listen to Solomon? Was it just because he was wise? No! It was also because he was exceedingly wealthy. He had the money to entertain them and capture their attention. He had the money to do things that made them wonder what manner of man he was. So, they had no choice but to take him seriously.


In like manner, if we too want men to take always take us seriously wherever we are, we need to understand that we need more than wisdom, knowledge, education, ideas, character or creativity. We also need to be rich in earthly things. But our wisdom, knowledge, education, ideas, character or creativity on its own cannot make us rich. Otherwise, it would have made us rich already. The only one that can make us rich, truly rich, is God Himself. And not only can He make us rich, He is also interested in doing so. (Cf. Ecc 9:11)


At least, He made Solomon rich, that is, besides the fact that He made him wise. If we too will put Him first in all things in our lives and take His instructions for living seriously, He will make us not only wise but also rich, so rich that we can be generous on every occasion. That way, there is nowhere we go or find ourselves, that people will not take us seriously. (Cf. Matt 6:33; 2Cor 8:8-11)

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WISDOM TO HANDLE HAPPINESS 03/03/2024


“…Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.” (James 5:13NIV)


There is a Yoruba adage which, when translated, says, “Poverty does not kill; it is unrestrained merriment that kills.” This, of course, does not mean that people don’t die or can’t die as a result of poverty, for many all around the world die every day as a result of poverty. Rather, it means that much more people die as a result of unrestrained merriment than as a result of poverty. And this, sadly, is the bitter truth.


So, it is not only our moments of trials that we must learn to handle; we must also learn to handle our moments of happiness. That is because moments of happiness can also be moments of vulnerability. They can be moments in which we let down our guards to rejoice or celebrate. And if we are not careful, those moments could end in pains, terrible losses, regrets or destruction for us.


For example, as bible accounts show us, on a particular birthday of the Herod ruling in Galilee during the time of our Lord Jesus, he became so happy with the dance presentation of Herodias’ daughter that he did not know when he swore an oath to give the girl anything she wanted, up to half of his kingdom. What was he thinking? Why would he make that kind of reckless promise? Let us even suppose that the girl did ask for half of his kingdom, would she be able to manage it? Did she have the wisdom, understanding and character that would be needed to handle such a great responsibility? I doubt it. (Cf. Mark 6:16-23)


Nevertheless, because this Herod was unusually excited, he made a reckless oath that eventually led him to killing a man of God. And that was because Herodias’ daughter did not ask for gold, silver, mansions, lands or cities. Instead, following her mother’s counsel, she asked for the head of John the Baptist, a man that Jesus referred to as one that is more than a prophet. And because of his oaths and his dinner guests, this king had to consent, even though he was greatly distressed about the matter. (Cf. Mark 6:24-28)


Now only God could tell the number of those who ended up killing or hurting themselves or others in some big ways because they failed to wisely handle their happiness or excitement. Only He also could tell the number of those that fell into the traps of their enemies because they were not wise or cautious enough in handling their moments of happiness or celebration. Perhaps you too have at some point in life gotten into trouble because you did not manage certain moments of happiness or celebration of yours wisely. And if you still would not learn wisdom from God, there is no guarantee that similar things would not happen in the future.    


What, then, is God’s wisdom saying? First, as we see in our opening bible text, it says, “Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.” Did you see that? The wisdom of God says if anyone is happy, let him praise God. Notice that it does not say let him get drunk with his friends or let him get inside his car and drive crazily around town or let him go and waste himself on some call girls. Rather, it says let him praise God.


Why is he to praise God? It is because God is the source of all true forms of happiness (Ecc 2:24-25). And if anyone would acknowledge this and praise Him on its basis, He will surely keep him from doing anything or taking any step that would turn his joy into mourning or open the door for the devil to use his moments of happiness against him. So, next time God brings about circumstances that make you happy, remember to praise Him for your happiness. That way, you are opening the door for Him to perfect your happiness and keep it from being polluted by the devil.


Second, the wisdom of God is saying do not make life complicated for yourself, just because you want to express your happiness. Solomon says this to us: “This is all that I have learned: God made us plain and simple, but we have made ourselves very complicated.” (Eccl 7:29GNT) Did you see that? It is not God that is making life hard for us; rather, we are the ones that often do things that Satan uses to make life hard for us. As I pointed out before, you can endanger others’ lives, get into debt, hurt or kill yourself, or expose yourself to the attacks of your enemies while expressing your happiness. And what good will that do you? None!


So, don’t create problems for yourself all in the name of expressing your happiness. Yes, praise God for your happiness and also rejoice with those who love you and care about you. But don’t do anything that will give the enemy an opportunity to strike you and turn your joy into sorrow. And may God fill your heart with His wisdom to always remember to act according to these words when you need to, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


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THE BELT OF TRUTH  02/03/2024


“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist…” (Eph 6:14NIV) 


When Paul was writing this part of his letter to the Ephesians, he was most probably looking at one of the Roman Soldiers that were guarding him in prison, reflecting on how the elements of his armour related to Christian living. So, when he speaks to us of 'the belt of truth', he does not mean that truth is a belt, in a literal sense. No! This is all figurative, and we must always remember that when interpreting Paul's thoughts about this matter.


What I am saying, in essence, is that when Paul tells us to fasten the belt of truth around our waist, he is simply telling us that what a belt is to a soldier is what truth must be to us. That is why I love the translation of the bible that says, “…Fasten truth around your waist like a belt…” (Eph 6:14GW) So, the point being made here is that, for the Christian, truth is a defence against his enemies. 


What then is truth? That was the question Pilate asked the Lord Jesus, just before he gave the sentence that led to his crucifixion. Unfortunately, he did not wait to receive an answer from the Lord. And we have no record that he got an answer to this important question before he died. (Cf. John 18:38)


Now, before the Lord's crucifixion, He had told His Apostles in a discussion that He was the way, the truth and the life. (Cf. John 14:6) And by calling Himself 'the truth', the Lord is simply showing us that 'truth' goes beyond a statement of fact made by someone; 'truth' is a person, and He is that person.


All this means that none of us can know the truth about life, ourselves or God without knowing the person of Jesus Christ. In short, we cannot know the truth about anything else without knowing the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the truth. The life He lived is the true life God wants every man to live. And the words He spoke revealed the truth about the life God wants every man to live.


So, when Paul tells us to fasten truth around our waist like a belt, he is simply telling us to let Jesus do to our lives what a belt does for a soldier. And a soldier, especially in the day in which Paul wrote this letter, did not wear a belt for decorative purposes. Rather, he wore a belt to hold all the pieces of his armour and weapons together; he wore a belt to keep all the pieces of his armour and weapons from falling apart.


Now that is exactly what truth is meant to do for the Christian. It is meant to keep his defence intact; it is meant to keep his defence from crumbling. And without the belt of truth in place in a believer's life, it will be hard for him to use all the other items of his armour effectively against the devil; it will be hard for him to keep his life from collapsing in the face of life's trials and challenges. 


So, everything must begin with knowing the truth and practising it. But if we ignore the truth, as many are doing today, we will soon enough realise that we are carried away by the lies of the devil and plunged into gross darkness and overwhelming confusion.


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WALK BY FAITH 01/03/2024


“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” (2Cor 5:7NKJV) 


The child of God walks by faith, not by what he sees, hears or feels. That means he walks by taking God more seriously than what the situations and circumstances of his life are saying. 


But what satan wants is for us to take those attacks that he is launching at us more seriously than God Himself. He wants to so pressurise us that all that we will see is what he is doing and saying instead of what God is doing and saying. His desire always is to force us to that spot where, instead of seeing God, all that we will see is how intense his wicked acts are and how hopeless we are except we accept his miserable solutions, which are no solutions at all.


Now we know that whatever satan says or does is to the end that he might ruin or destroy us. But whatever God says and does is to the end that we might enjoy life abundantly. That is why the Lord Jesus says, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10NKJV)


It follows, then, that if we want to frustrate satan's plots and wicked schemes to kill or mess us up, we have to turn our eyes away from what he is doing to what God is doing, and our ears away from what he is saying to what God is saying. And that is not a choice anybody can make for us. Each of us has to choose for himself who he wants to stand with. Are we going to stand with God, or are we going to take sides with the devil?


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WALK BY FAITH 01/03/2024


“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” (2Cor 5:7NKJV) 


The child of God walks by faith, not by what he sees, hears or feels. That means he walks by taking God more seriously than what the situations and circumstances of his life are saying. 


But what satan wants is for us to take those attacks that he is launching at us more seriously than God Himself. He wants to so pressurise us that all that we will see is what he is doing and saying instead of what God is doing and saying. His desire always is to force us to that spot where, instead of seeing God, all that we will see is how intense his wicked acts are and how hopeless we are except we accept his miserable solutions, which are no solutions at all.


Now we know that whatever satan says or does is to the end that he might ruin or destroy us. But whatever God says and does is to the end that we might enjoy life abundantly. That is why the Lord Jesus says, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10NKJV)


It follows, then, that if we want to frustrate satan's plots and wicked schemes to kill or mess us up, we have to turn our eyes away from what he is doing to what God is doing, and our ears away from what he is saying to what God is saying. And that is not a choice anybody can make for us. Each of us has to choose for himself who he wants to stand with. Are we going to stand with God, or are we going to take sides with the devil?


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THE GOOD NEWS 29/02/2024


““For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, "The just shall live by faith."” (Rom 1:16-17NKJV)


The gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ carries in it God's power to save anybody who believes it from any kind of problem. I am saying the gospel is capable of placing anybody who believes it in a position to experience God's divine ability for his salvation from sin, bad habits, health problems, marital issues and any sort of trouble.


See, when Paul was writing this letter to the Romans, he had in mind the fact that the Romans believed so much in their military power. They were the world power of that day. Therefore, even though they had many enemies all around them, the good news for them was that their army was up to the task. 


Unfortunately, as every one of these Romans would agree, military power can only, at its best, solve war problems; it cannot solve the problems that people are facing in their lives, homes, bodies, jobs and so on. And in fact, military power does not even solve war problems always or permanently. It cannot solve war problems always or permanently; it can only suppress them for a while or create more of them. 


In any case, people want their marital problems, health challenges and financial troubles dealt with. People want to have peace, not just around the borders of their land, but also in their lives, homes, jobs and so on. But military power cannot deliver on that. Military power cannot cure any of the illnesses of our homes, lives or society. And the Romans knew all these things very well, and that was no good news to them.


Now that was where Paul came in and began to share with them where the real power was lying. According to him, the real power, which is of God, lies in the message brought by our Lord Jesus Christ. And anyone who believes this message has access to this real power, for his salvation and deliverance from any and every kind of trouble. I mean that anyone who believes this message can access God's power for his salvation from those problems that are as close to him as the very air he breathes in. And that is good news.  

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GUARD YOUR HEART  28/02/2024

“Guard your heart more than anything else, because the source of your life flows from it.” (Prov 4:23GW) 


Can you see that? Since the source of a man's life flows from his heart, he is admonished to protect it more than anything else. 


As we all know, the moment the heart of a man stops beating, the life of that man is gone. A man may lose any other part of his body in a fight, in an accident or through an illness and still continue to live. However, the moment that same man loses his heart, his end has come.


Today, we speak of heart failures, heart attacks and other similar ailments. We even talk about hypertension, hypotension and so on. These things attack the heart, making it sick and unwilling to live on. That is why people who have them usually don't live long. 


But, you know, all such things only affect the physical heart. If you, for example, will check the diagram of the circulatory system of the human body, you will see the physical heart clearly depicted. But that is not the heart we are talking about here. I mean, that is not the heart that Solomon is asking us to guard with all diligence. And don't get me wrong. I am not saying that it is not important at all that you guard your physical heart, for it is important. In short, if you, for any reason, begin to toy with your physical heart, you will soon enough lose the opportunity you have to read things like these.


In any case, when we are talking about 'the heart,' we are actually talking about the invisible but real part of man; we are talking about the human spirit. Yes, we are talking about the unseen real person that is within us. And that is what Solomon says that every man should guard or protect. 


Now why should we protect our heart? It is because it is the main thing satan is after. Truly, he may attack a man's body, and he may attack his mind, but unless he has his heart, he doesn't have the man. So, satan's main aim is for the heart. He wants to fill it with fear, jealousy, rage, anger, filthy and immoral thoughts, greed, selfishness and all other kinds of evil. He wants to so possess man's heart that it becomes utterly unfit for the worship of God. And that is why you must protect your heart.


Originally, man's heart was made for the worship of God. So true worship can only come from the heart; it can only come from the human spirit. And any worship that does not come from the heart is insincere; it has to be rejected by God. That is why the Lord Jesus says, “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth." (John 4:23-24NIV)


What the Lord is saying, in essence, in this scripture is that those who are truly worshipping God are those who give Him heart-worship. These don't just bring stuffs to God to appease Him, and they don't just say sweat words to impress Him. Rather, they give Him their hearts first, before giving Him any other thing. 


Why did the Lord complain about the worship of the Israelites of His days? It was because it was not coming from their hearts. (Cf. Mark 7:6-7) They were more concerned about the rites, rules, regulations, styles and protocols of worship than the implications of those things. 


Yes, they were bringing to God all the things that they were required by the law, and they were holding all kinds of meetings and having all kinds of festivals. But none of those things affected their hearts. None of those things made any impact on the way they related to one another. They were still filled with wickedness and sold out to all kinds of evil. So they could not live the kind of life God wanted them to live. They could not be at peace within themselves and among themselves. Satan had their hearts, because they did not protect them. 


If we also, like them, will not guard our hearts, if we will not protect our hearts against the attacks of the devil, he will occupy them with things that will make our lives and the lives of those close to us miserable. So, guard your heart with all seriousness. Protect it against pride, greed, bitterness, jealousy, hypocrisy, lust and any other evil thing. Then the enemy will not be able to pollute your worship of God or turn you into an instrument of wickedness.


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OFFER THE BEST  27/02/2024

"So give orders that cedars of Lebanon be cut for me. My men will work with yours, and I will pay you for your men whatever wages you set. You know that we have no one so skilled in felling timber as the Sidonians."” (1Kings 5:6NIV)


Those were the words of King Solomon to King Hiram of Tyre in his letter to him, in which he expressed his desire to build a temple for the Lord. And one thing that is clear from what he said to that king is that he recognised the skills of his men in handling timber. According to him, no one at that time was as skilled as the Sidonians in felling timbers. So, if anyone wanted the best of timbers and was willing to pay for them, they were the ones he must consult and engage.


What is the point of this? First, it is that if you are the best at what you do, even the wisest of men will consult and engage your services. And they will not mind coming from the ends of the earth to find you, simply because you have what they want. So, if people are ignoring your work or trade, it may just be that your skills in handling it are not sharp enough to attract them to you.


Then, if you are the best at what you do, people will be willing to pay handsomely for your services. As we see in our opening text, Solomon was willing to pay Hiram any amount for the services of his men. That, of course, does not mean that he may not bargain at all or ask for discounts. He may do that. But it means that he recognised that those people would be offering him the best of timber services he could get anywhere. So, the power of setting the price to pay did not lie with him but with them.


In like manner, if you are the best at what you do, the power of bargain is with you and not with those engaging your services. So, they will be the ones begging or persuading you for discounts on the goods or services you are providing them. And because they want nothing but the best, because they do not want an alternative to the best, they will not go away from you but stick with you. 


For example, I have observed that there are some brands of items that people keep buying from our family shop, regardless of how costly they get. Why? Those buying these items believe that they are the best around. And since they want the best, they are willing to pay the price for it. 


So, if people are ignoring your work or business, it may not be because your price is too high. Yes, overpricing is one of the things killing some people’s businesses or trade. But truth be told, if you offer the best, those dying to have the best will not mind paying whatever it may cost them to have it.


If you, then, are looking forward to earning more, then, the secret is in offering the best of whatever you do. And why can you not offer the best of what you do? Why can’t you be the best? It is all about renewing your mind. If you renew your mind to be the best at what you do, then, you will give yourself to whatever training or discipline you will need to be the best. But as long as you continue to think that being the best is not necessary or achievable, you will not aim for it. 


Now what you don’t aim for may never be yours. And what is not yours you cannot give. So, if you want to be the best or be offering the best, renew your mind to always aim and go for the best. And may God’s grace overflow over your life to make this happen, in Jesus’ name. Amen.  

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EQUIP THE PEOPLE IN YOUR LIFE 26/02/2024


“So on the day of the battle not a soldier with Saul and Jonathan had a sword or spear in his hand; only Saul and his son Jonathan had them.” (1Sam 13:22NIV)


When the word of God tells us not to look to our own interests alone but also to the interests of others, it is for our own good. Of course, we may not know exactly when or how or to what extent we will benefit from doing so. But there will surely be times in our lives when we will reap the fruit of genuinely taking interest in the welfare, growth and development of the people in our lives, be it our spouses, children, family members, neighbours, colleagues at work or church brethren. (Cf. Phil 2:4)


As we see in our opening bible text, there was a time during the reign of King Saul that none of the soldiers with him had a sword or spear to defend themselves or their country. Only he and his son Jonathan had them. What that means is that all the soldiers with him, whatever their number may be, were useless to him and to their country at the time. They were useless because they had nothing to offer for the safety of the land when their enemies came to battle against them.


But who was to blame for that? Saul was to blame for it. He was their leader. He was their king. And he must have known that there would surely be days in which their enemies would rise up to fight against them. Why, then, did he not labour hard to see to it that all his soldiers were adequately equipped with quality weapons to defend themselves and their beloved country? Or what exactly did he think he was going to do with soldiers that had no real weapons but farming tools? Could he even call those ones soldiers? Definitely not!


Now, of course, as are equally shown in the passage where this matter is recorded in the bible, it was the Philistines that orchestrated the whole thing. They were the ones that made sure there was no blacksmith in all of Israel. So, all the people had to go down to them to make or sharpen their farm tools. You can see, then, that these Philistines did what they did to keep the Israelites dependent on them for as long as possible. They wanted to make sure they would never be strong enough to liberate themselves or defend themselves against their hostility and oppression. And they succeeded. (Cf. 1Sam 13:19-21)


But why did they succeed? They succeeded because the king of Israel did not take the training and equipping of his own people very seriously. Even if the Philistines would not teach their blacksmithing skills to the Israelites, he could have sent spies to other countries around them to learn these skills and to come back and teach them to their country people. But he did not do that because he was not passionate enough about the equipping of his fighting men. And because he failed in this matter, on the day of battle, when he needed these men to stand with him in fighting their enemies, they were useless to him, for they had no weapon to fight with.


Unfortunately, similar things are happening in our country today and, in fact, in many other countries of Africa. Most of our leaders do not take the education, training and equipping of their people seriously. And though there are developed countries, here and there, that are willing to share their knowledge in various fields with anyone willing to learn, these leaders are not doing much to sponsor their people to go and learn and become well-equipped enough in various fields of life to be able to give back to their countries.


Therefore, many of our African countries have been depending on the developed nations of the world for almost everything modern we want or need. And we may forever remain dependent on these developed nations for our sustenance in this modern world, if we don’t change our ways. And God forbid, if any of them should decide to wage war against us, the outcome would have been decided even before the war started.


What is my point? It is that we should be concerned not just about our own personal development and usefulness in life but also about the education, training and equipping of the people in our lives, especially our spouses, children, siblings, workers and brethren in church. Yes, sometimes, this may not be convenient and may even cost us some things that are very dear to us. But if we equip the people in our lives or support them in whatever way we can to become adequately equipped and fit to handle life by themselves, a day may come when they will be the ones supporting us to win some battles of life that we can’t win alone or to expand our sphere of influence in life in very significant ways. 


So, don’t let life be about you alone. Be concerned about others too. Be concerned about those in your life and see how you can help them get fit for life, spiritually, academically and financially, according to the grace God has given you. And a day will come when you will be glad you contributed to their fitness or readiness to handle life.

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TAKE YOUR STAND ON HIS WORD FOR YOUR HEALTH 25/02/2024


“He certainly has taken upon himself our suffering and carried our sorrows, but we thought that God had wounded him, beat him, and punished him. He was wounded for our rebellious acts. He was crushed for our sins. He was punished so that we could have peace, and we received healing from his wounds.” (Isa 53:4-5GW)


That is interesting! Jesus not only bore our sins, He also bore our weaknesses, sicknesses, sorrows and diseases. He bore them all so that we would not have to bear them again. 


Now that is not to say that Satan will still not try to place these things on us. He definitely will. But whenever he tries that, the scripture says that we are to resist him. (Cf. James 4:7) 


How do we resist him? It is by calling his attention to the reality about our healing. You say, “Look satan, Jesus already bore all my sicknesses and diseases. So you have no right to place any sickness or disease on me. Not only that, my body no longer belongs to you; it is now the temple of the living God. That is the truth, and you yourself know it. Therefore, I command you to take your hands off my body—God's property—in the name of Jesus. I am well now by the power of the Spirit of God.” 


But the trouble is this: how many of God's people usually react like that when any sickness or disease tries to make its home in their bodies? Then for some of those who have at one time or the other tried it, their most frequent comment is, “I tried it, but it did not work. The sickness did not go away.” 


What made them think it did not work? It was the fact that the symptoms did not immediately go away. But you cannot be acting on God's word and still be paying attention to sensory evidences. That is walking by sight. See, the moment you speak God's word to your body, it begins to respond. You may not feel like anything is happening, but you can be certain that something is happening; for God's word never fails. 


Remember how Jesus once addressed a fig tree, saying, “You shall never bear fruit again.” His disciples heard Him when He said so, but there was no immediate physical evidence that what He said had actually taken place. However, to their utmost surprise the following day, the tree had withered from its roots. (Cf. Mark 11:12-14 & 20-21) 


Now that is what we are talking about. We are talking about situations in which once you speak to your challenges, in accordance with the word of God, you will know in your heart that they have responded, regardless of what you feel, see or hear. Therefore, you continue to praise God for the victory that is already yours. And as you act like that, sooner or later, those situations will agree in appearance with the word of God that you have spoken to them.


So, regardless of what you feel or see in your body, take your stand on what His word says about your health. And His word will not fail you. Instead, it will bring about the fulfilment of His purpose in your life.


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JUST CRY OUT TO HIM 24/02/2024


“Some sat in darkness and the deepest gloom, prisoners suffering in iron chains, for they had rebelled against the words of God and despised the counsel of the Most High. So he subjected them to bitter labor; they stumbled, and there was no one to help. Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He brought them out of darkness and the deepest gloom and broke away their chains. Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men, for he breaks down gates of bronze and cuts through bars of iron.” (Ps 107:10-16NIV)


Look at this group of people. They had gotten into the bondage of the devil because of their rebellion against God's word. And it was so bad that nobody was going to help them out. But then, instead of giving up on life and on God in the deepest darkness that they found themselves, they humbled themselves and cried out to God for help. And their testimony was that He saved them from their distress, when they cried out to Him. 


In other words, God did not abandon them to be destroyed by the enemy, even though they got into trouble because of their own foolishness. Instead, He had mercy on them, forgave them and saved them from their distress. Yes, He destroyed their chains, set them free and brought them out of the darkness of fear and shame.


Now can He still do the same, similar or greater things for you? Yes, He can, for the bible says He is the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb 13:8). Also, the bible says He is able to do immeasurably more than we can ever ask or imagine, according to His power that is working in us (Eph 3:20-21). So, if you too have gotten into trouble, any kind of trouble, because of your rebellion against God's word, don't allow it to destroy you. 


I am saying if Satan has succeeded in putting you, your family, your business or anything that is yours in bondage because you would not take God seriously or pay attention to divine counsel, don't allow the situation to destroy you. Instead, since there is still breath in you, call out to God, and He will save you.


Mind you, it does not matter whether it is the darkness of immorality, poverty, sickness or barrenness that you have found yourself in, know that it is not the will of God for you to perish in it. So, cry out to Him for mercy and salvation, and He will show you mercy, break down your prison gates and set you free so that you can soar and laugh again. 


Of course, Satan will do everything he can to keep you from doing this. He will condemn you in your heart and fill you with all kinds of evil thoughts to make you think God will never look your way again or help you at all, seeing that you have greatly disappointed Him. But don't listen to Him. There is absolute and pure forgiveness in God through Christ Jesus. And anyone that wants it can freely approach His throne of God grace for it and find it (Heb 4:14-16; 1John 2:1-2). 


What, then, are you waiting for? Go for yours now, and you will find rest for your soul.  

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HOW SATAN USES PEOPLE 23/02/2024


“The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus.” (John 13:2NIV)


Paul, writing to the Ephesian brethren, says, “Don't give the devil any opportunity to work.” (Eph 4:27GW) Why? It is because he is always looking for an opportunity to work in and through people's lives. And once he has an opportunity to work, he will certainly use it to steal, kill or destroy. This is why we need to be watchful, so that we do not use our own hands to open the door for the devil to come into our lives and afflict us or use us to afflict others.


But then, if we do not know what things we may do or entertain in our lives that will result in an opening of the door of our lives for the devil to work, there is no guarantee that we will not, from time to time, open the door of our lives for him to work. That is why we need to pay attention to what Scriptures teach about his ways and the things he uses to gain entrance to work in people's lives.


For instance, in Ephesians 4, where Paul tells us not to give the devil any opportunity to work, he says this in connection with getting angry (Eph 4:27 ). In other words, he is saying that through anger Satan can gain entrance into our lives and work. And only God knows how many people he has used some moments of their anger to destroy their lives, homes, relationships or businesses. But if we are walking with the consciousness that he can use anger to ruin our lives or the lives of those that we love, each time we are angry, we will watch what things we say or what steps we take and, in fact, find ways to quickly calm ourselves down.


But it is not only anger that Satan may use as a door to gain entrance into our lives; he can also use any act of the flesh that we permit in our lives. He can use greed, lust, impatience, selfishness, drunkenness, jealousy and so forth as a means to work in our lives or through our lives. And where do all these acts of the flesh come from? According to the Lord Jesus Christ, they all spring from the heart (Matt 15:19). In fact, James, in his epistle, paints for us a very vivid picture of how every kind of evil humans may do is birthed. He says, “…but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” (James 1:14-15NIV)


Did you see that? Every act of sin starts from a seed of thought. And the one who always plants these seeds of thought is the devil. He is always the one that brings to the people the desire to do something wrong or destructive. And once we give room to any of these thoughts to take root in our hearts and grow, Satan will seize the opportunity and use it to work in our lives or through our lives.


Look, for example, at what is said about Judas Iscariot in our opening text. It is said that Satan prompted him to betray Jesus. That means the one who planted in him the thought to betray the Lord was Satan. And because he entertained that thought long enough and did not reject it, Satan eventually took hold of him and led him to betray His master and to also destroy himself.


In like manner, every day Satan is taking hold of people through the evil thoughts he is planting in them and using them to do all kinds of evil. And if we will not lie to ourselves, we too will agree that every day we are being confronted with evil thoughts that can open the doors of our lives for the devil to come in and work through us. In fact, Peter, in his epistle, says these thoughts war against our souls (1Pet 2:11). In other words, every evil thought that comes to us is an enemy that is seeking to take us captive and destroy us. If we, then, do not want to end up yielding to them and giving Satan an opportunity to use us to do evil, we must do to them what Paul says.


Now what does Paul say along this line? He says, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2Cor 10:5NIV) Did you see that? Paul says we are to bring all our thoughts under the authority of Christ. That means any thought, idea or philosophy that comes to us that is not in agreement with the truth that is in Christ Jesus, as revealed in the Scriptures, must be demolished by us. We must not allow it in our hearts or entertain it. Yes, these thoughts will come to us. But we must always remember that they are not originally our thoughts but Satan's thoughts. And since that is the case, we must say 'No' to them in our hearts. Otherwise they will make up the doors through which Satan will gain an opportunity to work in our lives or through our lives and destroy things.


Apart from that, we must also learn to always pray that God will strengthen us by His Holy Spirit in us to reject and bring down any thought, idea or philosophy that is contrary to His will. Paul, for instance, prays for the Ephesians in his letter to them that God will strengthen them with power in their inner man, so that Christ will be at home in them, fully expressing Himself all the time (Eph 3:16-17). We too need to learn to offer this kind of prayers for ourselves. That is because the fact that we recognise a desire as evil does not mean we have the strength to say 'No' to it. Many today are giving in to wrong thoughts and having their lives ruined through them. And that is not because they do not know that these thoughts are bad but because they do not have the strength to say 'No' to them.


Now remember that Satan once planted a suicidal thought in our Lord Jesus Christ, prompting Him to jump down from the highest point of the temple, all in the name of illustrating angelic protection with His life. But because the Lord had the strength to say 'No' to him, He eventually did not yield to that thought. Sadly, many have yielded to such suicidal thoughts and ended their lives because they just could not resist the urge to do so. (Cf. Matt 4:5-6)


So, we need strength from God to be able to reject and resist evil thoughts, even when our hearts are right. Remember the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, which say, “The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.” That means it is possible for our hearts to be right and to want to do right but for the strength to do so not to be there. And what solution does the Lord proffer to this kind of problem? Prayer! So, learn to pray that God will not only enable you to always recognise evil thoughts and inspirations but will also continually strengthen your heart to always say 'No' to them. That way, you will never give Satan any opportunity to work in your life or through your life. (Cf. Matt 26:40-41)



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WHEN HE BEGINS TO JUDGE 22/02/2024


“Now the glory of the God of Israel went up from above the cherubim, where it had been, and moved to the threshold of the temple. Then the LORD called to the man clothed in linen who had the writing kit at his side and said to him, "Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of those who grieve and lament over all the detestable things that are done in it." As I listened, he said to the others, "Follow him through the city and kill, without showing pity or compassion. Slaughter old men, young men and maidens, women and children, but do not touch anyone who has the mark. Begin at my sanctuary." So they began with the elders who were in front of the temple.” (Ezek 9:3-6NIV)


Who were the ones that God said must be spared when He was going to judge the city of Jerusalem? Those who were grieving and lamenting over the wicked things going on in her! In other words, it was those who separated themselves from the wickedness in the land and who also lamented over it that were marked by God for safety. 


Now remember that all the people in that city were His chosen and anointed people. But when He was going to judge the land, it was only those who were against the wickedness being done there that were specially marked out for salvation. 


Then where did God say that the judgment should start from, at least, judgment has to start from somewhere? He said that the judgment should begin right at His sanctuary. So, those sent out to judge the land started with the elders who were in front of the temple. And is that not in agreement with Peter’s words that say, “For it is time for judgment to begin with the family of God; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?” It is! (Cf. 1Peter 4:17)


Therefore, those of us who are asking God to stretch forth His hand in judgment against the wickedness in our country need to understand that we are the ones He will start with, when He begins to answer our prayers. He will start with our various Christian assemblies and with our various church leaders. Yes, He will start with our various families and also with our various family heads. Are we then ready for Him? What exactly will be our fate when He begins to judge?


Well, the only way to make certain that we are not punished along with the wicked is for us to put our lives in order now that we can. So, begin to put your life and affairs in order. Begin to turn away from all forms of wickedness, especially the ones that you are judging and condemning others for. Also, encourage those in your life to do likewise and to do so without delay. Then when God moves in judgment to cleanse our land, you and all that is yours will be safe, regardless of how He judges.


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ARE YOU NOT STEALING FROM GOD? 21/02/2024


Apart from praying, another major way to move God to keep opening doors of favour for us is not to steal from Him but to give to Him everything He is asking of us. But can we really steal from God? Is that even possible? Yes, it is possible. 


For example, God accuses the Jews of Malachi’s day of stealing from Him by not being faithful in giving their tithes and offerings. But who were those tithes and offerings meant for? Was it God? No! Rather, they were meant for His priests that were serving the people, the Levites scattered everywhere in the land, the widows, the fatherless, the aliens and other poor people in the land. (Cf. Deut 14:28-29&26:12-15; Malachi 3:8-9)


Yet, when these Jews would not be faithful in giving all their tithes and offerings to those God had commanded them to give them to, He called them robbers. And because they were stealing from Him in this manner, certain doors of His blessings remained shut against them. Not only that, devourers were eating up the fruit of their labour and causing them to experience labour loss. And as He told them, the only way out was for them to repent and begin to do the right thing (Malachi 3:10-12).


Furthermore, in addressing the Jews of Haggai’s day, God told them that one major reason all of them were experiencing labour loss, in spite of their hard and diligent labour, was that they were neglecting the building of His temple. These people had the time and resources to build their own fine houses. But they kept on postponing the building of God’s temple to some unspecified time. So, He got angry with them and shut several doors of prosperity against them. And as He pointed out to them through Haggai, unless they repented and began to do the right thing, they would not come out of financial stagnation. (Cf. Haggai 1)


In like manner, though we, who are now in Christ Jesus, do not have the same commandments about giving as the Jews under the old covenant, we also do have very clear instructions on giving to support those feeding us with the word of God, their ministry and the poor believers among us (Rom 12:13&15:16; 1Cor 9:14; Gal 6:6). Of course, whatever we give to them must be given willingly, cheerfully and in keeping with our income (1Cor 16:2; 2Cor 8:12&9:7). But we must not fail to be RESPONSIBLE, FAITHFUL, DELIBERATE AND CONSISTENT in doing this. Otherwise, we too will be stealing from God.


Now we cannot be stealing from God in any way and still expect His blessings to freely flow in our lives. Yes, we may have all kinds of excuses for stealing from Him. We may say it is because we really do not have or it is because we are jobless or it is because the responsibilities we are taking care of are just too much for us to bear or it is because we are still students and young. But one thing is clear, which is that, as long as we are stealing from God, we will never experience the measure of prosperity we are meant to experience in life. 


See, even if what we are doing is to give Him less than we are capable of giving, we are still stealing from Him and will certainly face the consequences of doing so. And perhaps the reason your financial status has not changed or improved much in years is that you have been stealing from God. Or perhaps the reason certain doors you have been knocking on for years have not been opened to you is that you are using what is meant for God for yourself. You need to repent today and begin to do the right thing. Otherwise, God forbid, your condition may just go from bad to worse. 


Do have a very pleasant day.

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HE IS ABLE AND WILLING – REACH OUT FOR HIM 20/02/2024


“To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy—to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” (Jude 24-25NIV)


There is a big difference between being able to do something and doing it. One may have the capacity to do something and yet be unwilling to do it. And one may have the willingness to do something but lack the capacity to do it. It will be wise, then, if we need help, any kind of help, to approach one who not only has the capacity to help us but who is also willing to help us. 


Now in these last days, days that are filled with all kinds of wickedness, immorality, deception, poverty and madness, there is only one person who possesses not only the capacity to keep our lives from being ruined but also the willingness to do so. And that person is God Almighty. How do I know this? It is through the Scriptures.


For example, in our opening text, Jude tells us that God is able to keep us from falling and to present us before His glorious presence without fault and with great joy. Think about that. God has the ability to do what none of us can do for ourselves. None of us is wise, smart or powerful enough to protect himself from the devil and his evil schemes and activities. And none of us has what it takes to bring himself safely into God’s eternal kingdom, without blemish and with joy. These things are just beyond us. But they are not beyond God at all. He has what it takes to protect us from anything that may want to destroy us in this world and to also safely bring us into His eternal presence with hearts full of joy and lives free of corruption.


But then, is God willing to do these things for us? Is He willing to protect us from all the evils and corruption of these last days and bring us safely and with joy into His eternal presence, when the time is ripe? If He is unwilling to do these things for us, then, He is useless to us – His power is useless to us. That means we are to look elsewhere for help or surrender to those things that are seeking to destroy us. 


Thankfully, we don’t have to look for help where there is none or surrender to the devil and his evil plans for us. And that is because God is more than willing to take care of us, protect us from everything seeking to destroy us in this world and also lead us safely into His eternal presence. In short, it is His pleasure to do these things for us, for the bible says, “Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you.” (1Peter 5:7)


Think about that. We are told to cast all our worries and troubles on God. Why? It is because He cares about us. Maybe you did not know before that God cares about you. The bible wants you to know now that He cares about you. The people around you may have proved that they do not care about you. But God does. He cares about your success, safety, purity and peace of mind. In short, He cares about everything that concerns you. 


Now because God cares about you, He is willing to use His power to take care of you and keep your life from being messed up or ruined. Yes, He is willing to use everything He has to keep you safe in this world and to bring you with a heart that is full of joy into His eternal kingdom. You, however, must allow Him to take care of you. Otherwise, you may end up having your life totally ruined right before Him, if you are not shown mercy. Remember that, right in the presence of Jesus, Peter was drowning in the waters of a sea. And if he had not cried out to the Lord to save him, maybe that would have been the end of his life and ministry. Who knows? (Cf. Matt 14:23-33)


Is that to say that the Lord would not have saved Peter, if he had not cried out for his help on that occasion? No! The Lord does not always wait for us to call out to Him for help before He helps or saves us. On the contrary, in most cases, He saves and helps us even before we know we are in danger. But He also wants us to learn to call out to Him in our moments of need. He wants to learn to show, by calling out to Him, that we know that He is the only one that can save us and that cares enough for us to save us, regardless of what our problems may be. So, instead of allowing yourself to be destroyed by the wickedness, pollution or disasters of this world, reach out for the help and protection of God, knowing that He is not only able to keep you but also willing to do so.

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HE WILL PROVIDE SOMEONE 19/02/2024


“May the Lord show mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains. On the contrary, when he was in Rome, he searched hard for me until he found me.” (2Tim 1:16-17NIV)


One of the things that troubled apostle Paul the most when he was under lock up as a prisoner of Christ was the fact that many of the brethren abandoned him. That was not to say that they abandoned the Christian faith and went back to their old ways. They did not do that. But they would not identify with this man of God in his chains because doing so might exposed them to danger as well. And they knew it.


Now what they did was so bad and disturbing that he went on to say to Timothy, “You know that everyone in the province of Asia has deserted me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes.” (2Tim 1:15NIV) He also said to him, “At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them.” (2Tim 4:16NIV)


Did you see that? Every believer that Paul knew and loved in the province of Asia at that time forsook him. Even certain individuals that he mentioned their names, Phygelus and Hermogenes, also forsook him. They were not there for him when he needed them the most. They would not even show up in the court room to show their support for him and for the cause of the gospel when he was being tried. Instead, they all left him to face the music alone.


That, however, did not make Paul lose his mind or become bitter against them. Instead, he prayed for them that God would not hold what they did to him against them. That means what they did was wrong. It was so wrong that God could punish them for it. He punished such sins in the past, and He is still able to punish them now. (Cf. Ps 82; Prov 24:11-12; Obadiah 8-14)


So, we need to be careful never to abandon our brethren to destruction, shame or disgrace, regardless of what might be responsible for their challenges and especially when their hearts are yearning for our help or support. Yes, sometimes, standing by others in their moments of shame, failure or destruction could expose us too to danger. But as long as we are not doing so according to the wisdom of the world but on the basis of faith in God, He will not only show us what we need to do but also protect us from every evil attack. And who knows? We might just be that one person that He is counting on to save, lift or comfort our brethren in those moments of their lives. (Cf. Prov 24:11-12; Gal 6:1-2)


For instance, as we see in our opening text, even though everybody in the province of Asia abandoned Paul, God was still able to provide a man that would stand by him and comfort him. And that man, Onesiphorus, made sure that he searched for this apostle until he found him and comforted him. Could that have been easy for him? No! But he did it anyway. He did what others were afraid and unwilling to do. He risked his life to do the will of God. And he succeeded through God's enablement. So, Paul prays for his household that God would be merciful to them as well, as their man had been merciful to him.


Also, in the day that Jezebel, that wicked wife of King Ahab, began to kill off all the Lord's prophets in Israel, God provided a man, Obadiah, Ahab's own palace administrator to protect and preserve one hundred prophets of His. How was he able to do that, given the fact that Jezebel must have had all kinds of spies both in the palace and outside it? It was by the wisdom of God. But the man had to be willing first for God to be able to use him in that manner. (Cf. 1Kings 18:2-4)


Therefore, if we too are willing to stand by our brethren, comfort them or even rescue them in their moments of trial, God is able to show us how to go about it. Then, regardless of what we are going through in life at the moment, regardless of how difficult it may be for anybody to help us there, God is able to provide someone that will be willing to risk everything to give us the support or encouragement we need to stand strong to the very end. 


However, we, like Paul, must keep in mind the fact that God will never abandon us, even if all men do. Instead, He will stand by us and see to it that we walk in victory over whatever our trials may be, as long as our hearts are fully devoted to Him. Then we also must not allow any form of bitterness or resentment in our hearts against anyone that will not give us support in our moments of need. Otherwise, we may just shut against ourselves whatever door of help God may intend to open for us. And may He keep us from doing this to ourselves, in Jesus' name. Amen.


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GO AND TAKE IT 18/02/2024


As we are shown in the Scriptures, God is the source of everything we need in this life. It is from Him everything has come and it is for Him everything exists (Rom 11:26; 1Cor 8:6). Therefore, He is the one we are to look up to for anything we need or want. And thankfully, He Himself wants all our needs met. That is why Paul instructs us to put our hope in Him, for He richly provides us with all things for our enjoyment (1Tim 6:17).

Think about that. God richly or abundantly provides us with everything we need for our enjoyment in this life. Not only that, Solomon tells us that God also gives His people the ability to enjoy whatever He provides for them (Ecc 5:19). So, if we are not enjoying our lives, it is not because there is a shortage of God's provisions. Rather, it is either because we are ignorant of His provisions for us or because we will not go for what He has provided for us, so that we can make it ours to enjoy.

Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians, tells us this: “We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.” (1Cor 2:12-13NIV) Did you see that? One of the reasons God gave us His Holy Spirit is that He may lead us to fully know and understand His provisions for us to live meaningful and excellent lives in this world. Therefore, one of the prayers we must continually offer is that God will see to it that His Spirit in us instruct and educate us fully in the knowledge of His provisions for us in every area of our lives.

But it is not enough for us to know what God has provided for us. It is also important that we go for what He has provided for us. Otherwise, what He has provided for us, which is legitimately ours, may never be ours to possess or enjoy. See, it is not every provision of God for us that will come to us right where we are. There are provisions of His for us that we must seek out or go out to possess for ourselves. Otherwise, they will never be ours. Or why do you think Jesus says, “Seek and you shall find?” It is because of things like this. (Cf. Matt 7:7-8)

For example, when God brought the nation of Israel out of Egypt in order to lead them into the Promised land, He rained down food for them everyday in the wilderness. But they all had to go out everyday to gather the food. Yes, by faith, they all had to go out everyday expecting to find God's provision of food for them. And each time they went out, they found His provision of food for them. But what if they would not go out to take hold of what God had provided for them? They would most likely die of hunger. (Cf. Exodus 16)

Furthermore, even though God had already provided the Promised Land for these people, they still had to go in and take possession of it. That was their own job to do and not God's. God's job was to provide a place for them to settle and enjoy His goodness. Theirs was to go to the place, drive out those occupying it and take it for themselves. Unfortunately, when Moses was still their leader, fear and unbelief would not allow the grown-up ones among them to go into the land and take possession of God's provisions for them. Therefore, they were judged by God with stagnation, aimless wandering and death. (Cf. Num 13&14)

In like manner, if we too will not move out in faith to seek and take hold of God's provisions for the enjoyment, fruitfulness and usefulness of our lives, hunger, stagnation, aimless wandering, barrenness and death are the only things we can hope for in life. So, first, make it a business to keep talking to God about filling your heart with revelations of His provisions for you in every area of your life.

Then, as He reveals to you the things He has provided for you or the places His provisions are kept for you, take the necessary steps to possess and begin to enjoy what is yours. Put your mind to work. Use your gifts, spiritual and natural. Use your acquired skills and education. Meet the people you believe God wants you to meet. Go to the places He wants you to go. Start that business. Open that shop. Apply for that job or contract. Deploy all that He has endowed you with to seek out and to lay hold of that which He has already made yours. Then even if there are giants standing over the land that is yours, confront them with the authority He has given you in Christ Jesus. And you will find that He will honour all your steps of faith by making sure that you fully possess and enjoy what is yours.

Do have a great July 2022


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MORE THAN A MIRACLE 17/02/2024


“But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand compels him. So I will stretch out my hand and strike the Egyptians with all the wonders that I will perform among them. After that, he will let you go.” (Ex 3:19-20NIV) 


Did you see that? God had already announced to Moses before he left for Egypt that He would need to perform all kinds of wonders before the Israelites would experience permanent freedom from Egypt. In other words, they would need more than a miracle for Pharaoh to release them. So, each time Pharaoh offered him partial liberty instead of complete liberty, having witnessed a destructive sign from God, Moses knew that there must be yet another miracle. 


In like manner, each time we sense that our joy is not full over a matter or that our experience of the liberty that is ours in Christ Jesus in a situation is not absolute, we should know that there may yet be a need for another miracle or move of God in that situation. So, we should not give up or accept anything less than fullness of joy in it. 


Instead, we should continue to pray to God, to declare His word and to take all the steps of faith that are within our power to take about the situation. And as we continue to patiently trust God and to do His will about the matter, those miracles or divine moves that need to happen will happen, and our joy will be made full.


What is the point I am making? It is that there are times we need more than a miracle or an experience of victory to enjoy the full liberty and joy that are already ours in Christ Jesus. And for us to know such times and respond to them accordingly, we need our hearts and minds to be overwhelmed with divine revelations of the nature of the challenges we are faced with it. That way, we will not underestimate them, get content with little experiences of victory over them or underestimate the power of God to make us experience total victory over them.


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YOUR DESTINY 16/02/2024


“For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.” (Romans 8:29NIV) 


Those God foreknew He also predestined. That is what Paul tells us in our opening bible text. And it is showing us that God knew us before we came. He knew we would come. Before you were formed in your mother’s womb, He knew you would come. He knew you would not be aborted. He knew you would not die prematurely. He knew you would come. And because He knew that you would come, He had a purpose for you. 


So then, your being in Christ today is not a mistake. Your being in Christ today is not an afterthought on God’s part. He had always known you would come to be in Him someday. And He has a destiny for you.


Now people often ask, “What is my destiny?” And we have those who go from place to place, trying to find out what their destiny is. They want to know whether it is their destiny to be a doctor, a lawyer, an engineer or an accountant. They are always seeking to associate with prestigious professions. And very rarely will you see individuals who will say it is their destiny to be a cobbler, especially in this part of the world, even though nothing is wrong with being a cobbler. 


But from what we see in our opening bible text, what is God’s destiny for us? It is that we might be conformed to the likeness of His Son Jesus Christ. He wants you to be like His Son, Jesus Christ, in every way. That is His destiny for you. 


So, it does not matter whether you are a doctor or a lawyer or a farmer or a cobbler or an engineer or a fashion designer or a plumber. You can be any of those things. It does not matter to God. You can be a fisherman, if you like. Peter was a fisherman. Andrew was a fisherman. John was a fisherman. James was a fisherman. Matthew was a tax collector. So, it is not about your earthly profession. You can be any of those things you choose to be, as long as you have the ability for it. You can be an artist, as long as you have the ability for it. You can be a nurse, if you the ability for it. 


But as far as God is concerned, none of these professions is His destiny for you. That is just something you need to do while you are here on earth. His destiny for you is that you may be conformed to the likeness of His Son, Jesus Christ. That is His goal for you. That is the reason He saved you. That is the reason He gave His Son, Jesus Christ, for you. He wants you to stop being like Adam. He wants you to be like His Son, Jesus Christ. And once you are like Jesus and are living everyday like Him, it will not matter to God whether you are a doctor or an engineer or a barber. What will matter to Him is that your life is daily bringing Him glory. That is your destiny. And may it be completely fulfilled, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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TERRIBLE TIMES IN THE LAST DAYS  15/02/2024


“But mark this: there will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God – having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.” (2Timothy 3:1-5NIV) 


Pay attention to what Paul says here. He says, “Mark this: there will be terrible times in the last days.” He does not say, “Mark this: there may be terrible times in the last days.” Rather, he says there will be certainly be terrible times in the last days. In other words, you can expect this to be the case; you can expect the last days to be terrible days. What, then, will be the effect of this on people? Paul says they will change and become lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud and so forth. 


Now, often, when we read or quote this passage, we assume that Paul is referring to unbelievers. We assume that he is saying unbelievers will become lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant and so forth. But he is not talking about unbelievers here. That is because they are already these things. They are already boastful, arrogant, wicked, disobedient to parents and so on. So, the apostle is not referring to them here. Rather, he is referring to believers. And he is saying that they will change in the last days, for there will be terrible times and wickedness will increase. In fact, he goes on to say that they are going to have a form of godliness, an appearance of godliness. But there will be nothing to it.


This explains why we have many people in this country today that attend church meetings and yet little of the impact of righteousness is felt in the country. Go to our work places, schools and so forth, and you will find there a lot of people who profess to be Christians. Yet the impact of righteousness is hardly felt around them. If believers are concentrated in a particular place, one should feel the impact of righteousness there. We should see the fruit of righteousness in such a place. In fact, it should continually be on the increase. There should be a greater expression of love, a greater demonstration of patience and self-control in such a place. 


But is that what we see in our world today, a world in which many claim to be believers in Christ Jesus? No! And why is that so? It is because what many people call godliness today is simply a form, an appearance of it that has no substance in it. Do you know there are ways someone will dress today, and you will know that this one belongs in the church? I mean that when you consider how certain individuals dress, talk and comport themselves, you will most likely be able to say that these ones are Christians. Such people have a form, an appearance of godliness. But having such a form does not mean that you are godly. You can appear to be godly or to be a good person, when you are in fact not a good person. And Paul warns Timothy not to have anything to do with such individuals. 


However, before things will get to that point in which we will not want to have anything to do with a brother or sister again, we need to watch them. The fact is that there is a point someone will get to in his immorality or fall in which it will not be healthy for you as a believer to continue to fellowship with him. And we must not allow any one of us to get to that point, a point in which we may have to hand them over to the devil. This is why we need to understand the times in which we are living. We need to understand that these are times in which believers can be corrupted or polluted, in which believers can grow cold in the expression of their love. 


So, we must watch ourselves. That way, when we begin to see symptoms of these things in any one of us, we can quickly step in and prevent them from falling away before it is too late. But if we are self-conscious, right before our eyes, our brethren will collapse in their faith.


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KEEP YOUR LIFE OPEN 14/02/2024


“Make room for us in your hearts. We have wronged no one, we have corrupted no one, we have exploited no one.” (2Corinthians 7:2NIV) 


Can you see the basis on which Paul is telling these brethren to make room for them in their hearts? He says we have wronged no one, we have corrupted no one, we have exploited no one. That is like saying, “We have proved that we are trustworthy. We have proved that we are not going to hurt you or exploit you or corrupt you, if you open your lives to freely fellowship with us.” 


Well, this also shows us that there are brethren who will hurt you, if you are careless in the way you deal with them. There are brethren who will exploit or swindle you, if you open your life for them without much thoughtfulness. And there are brethren that can corrupt you through your fellowship with them. So, you should not freely open your life to those that you don’t know what they are doing with their lives or what they are up to. That may prove injurious to your life.


But then, there are true children of God like that will not wrong you, corrupt you or exploit you, if you should open your life to them. And you need to identify such people and begin to share your life with theirs, so that you can be mutually edified. Here is what Paul has to say along this line in his first letter to the Thessalonian brethren:


“We were not looking for praise from people, not from you or anyone else, even though as apostles of Christ we could have asserted our authority. Instead, we were like young children among you. Just as a nursing mother cares for her children, so we cared for you. Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well.” (1Thessalonians 2:6-8NIV) 


Can you see that? Paul and his colleagues shared their lives with these brethren, that is, besides sharing the gospel with them. That is why he goes on to say in verse 10, “You are witnesses, and so is God, of how holy, righteous and blameless we were among you who believed.” (1Thessalonians 2:10NIV) 


That is fellowship. You keep your life open to the brethren. That way, they can see what is going on there. If new people come into your life, they can see them. If you get a new job, they can see it. When you start a new business, they can see it. And when you are going to have a wife or a husband, they can see for themselves who it is you are going to marry. 


Now when this is the case, there won’t be any rumours about you in the church of God. Everybody knows what is going on in your life. So, nobody is going to peddle any rumour about you, for there is nothing to peddle. And when things are this way, you can be helped, if you are missing it. I am not saying you must miss it. But when your life is open to God’s people, you can be helped, if you are going in the wrong direction or taking the wrong steps.


So, take your fellowship with God’s people seriously, if you want to consistently walk in victory over sin. Take advantage of their presence in your life. You know there are times that we may come in contact with challenges that are proving to be bigger than what we can handle in our offices, businesses, neighbourhoods or schools. And when such things are made known to the brethren, they are able to support us with their prayers, counselling and so forth. 


But when you will not open your life to God’s people freely, and they have to start pursuing you from place to place, something is wrong. And the truth is that you are already hurting yourself. When you are saying things like, “I don’t want people visiting me or coming into my house for anything,” you are making a mistake. You are denying yourself of the blessings of fellowship. And you know, it is the degree to which you open your life to the brethren that you will enjoy the blessings of fellowshipping with them.


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PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE TOP  13/02/2024


“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training…” (1Cor 9:25NIV)


Most people start out in life desiring to be at the top. And nothing is wrong with that. That is because even God wants all His people to be at the top in life (Deut 28:13). That, of course, means there is enough room for everyone at the top. This, however, is not to say that all of us have to occupy the same office in life or be dignified in the same way. Rather, it means that each of us can distinguish himself from others in this life as unique through the things he does and by the way he does them. 


But will everyone end up at the top in life? No! Why? It is because it is not everyone that develops or trains himself for the top. As Paul shows us in our opening bible text, there is a measure of discipline that we must strictly put ourselves through in life in order to accomplish certain things or attain certain heights. Of course, accomplishing anything at all in this life goes beyond the amount of effort or skills we put into it. God Himself, the creator and ruler of all things, must also permit or enable us to accomplish what we set our hearts on accomplishing. Otherwise, whatever we do to get it done will not work. (Cf. Ps 127:1-2; Ecc 9:11)


However, even if God wants us to get something done or attain some position in life, if we do not possess the discipline or character needed to be there, we won’t get there. And even if by virtue of our relationship with some people we do get there, it won’t be long before we drive ourselves out of there through our lack of fitness or character.


So, if you desire to be at the top in any field of life, identify the discipline you require and strictly give yourself to getting it. Also, identify what discipline or skills you will need to stay at the top and begin to develop or acquire them. That is because one may possess what it takes to get to the top and not possess what it takes to stay there. Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, had all the natural advantages he needed to be at the top of the kingdom his father left behind for him. But he did not possess the character to remain at the top of it. Thus, he lost a very large part of it. What about King Saul? He had all the natural attributes needed to become king. But he lacked the qualities needed to retain the kingdom for himself and his descendants after him. (Cf. 1Sam 9-16; 1Kings 12)


If you, then, do not want to end up like any of these men, don’t just trust in God to lift you to the top, also begin to train yourself for the top. Remember Joseph. He not only trusted God to take him to the top in life; he also developed himself for the top. He used every opportunity he had to serve in life to train himself and to prove himself as someone that could be trusted with people and resources at any level and in any place, even in the prison. And when the time came for him to be set above a whole nation, nobody thought it was a bad idea to do so. (Cf. Gen 39-41)


Remember David too. Yes, he trusted God to take him to that high place He had anointed him for. But before that time came, he developed himself for it. First, he so mastered his skills of playing the harp and of relating to people that when the king of the land needed someone to play for him, he was the best hand that could be found around. Also, he used the opportunity he had to directly serve the king during that period to learn all he could learn about the palace life and how to be royal and majestic. In addition, he used his time in the army to learn and show all the people that he could lead them well, from victory to victory. So, when he was given a high rank in the army, all the troops and their officers as well were pleased with it. And when he eventually became king, the whole nation had no problem following him. (Cf. 1Sam 16:14-25; 1Sam 18:5)


So, again, I am saying that if you desire to be at the top someday in life and to also stay there, then, prepare yourself for it. Get the skills and the discipline you need to be there and to stay there. Also, drop whatever attitude or mentality you have that does not belong at the top. And may the good Lord Himself give you wings to rise to that place at the top that He has prepared for you in this life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


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PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE TOP  13/02/2024


“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training…” (1Cor 9:25NIV)


Most people start out in life desiring to be at the top. And nothing is wrong with that. That is because even God wants all His people to be at the top in life (Deut 28:13). That, of course, means there is enough room for everyone at the top. This, however, is not to say that all of us have to occupy the same office in life or be dignified in the same way. Rather, it means that each of us can distinguish himself from others in this life as unique through the things he does and by the way he does them. 


But will everyone end up at the top in life? No! Why? It is because it is not everyone that develops or trains himself for the top. As Paul shows us in our opening bible text, there is a measure of discipline that we must strictly put ourselves through in life in order to accomplish certain things or attain certain heights. Of course, accomplishing anything at all in this life goes beyond the amount of effort or skills we put into it. God Himself, the creator and ruler of all things, must also permit or enable us to accomplish what we set our hearts on accomplishing. Otherwise, whatever we do to get it done will not work. (Cf. Ps 127:1-2; Ecc 9:11)


However, even if God wants us to get something done or attain some position in life, if we do not possess the discipline or character needed to be there, we won’t get there. And even if by virtue of our relationship with some people we do get there, it won’t be long before we drive ourselves out of there through our lack of fitness or character.


So, if you desire to be at the top in any field of life, identify the discipline you require and strictly give yourself to getting it. Also, identify what discipline or skills you will need to stay at the top and begin to develop or acquire them. That is because one may possess what it takes to get to the top and not possess what it takes to stay there. Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, had all the natural advantages he needed to be at the top of the kingdom his father left behind for him. But he did not possess the character to remain at the top of it. Thus, he lost a very large part of it. What about King Saul? He had all the natural attributes needed to become king. But he lacked the qualities needed to retain the kingdom for himself and his descendants after him. (Cf. 1Sam 9-16; 1Kings 12)


If you, then, do not want to end up like any of these men, don’t just trust in God to lift you to the top, also begin to train yourself for the top. Remember Joseph. He not only trusted God to take him to the top in life; he also developed himself for the top. He used every opportunity he had to serve in life to train himself and to prove himself as someone that could be trusted with people and resources at any level and in any place, even in the prison. And when the time came for him to be set above a whole nation, nobody thought it was a bad idea to do so. (Cf. Gen 39-41)


Remember David too. Yes, he trusted God to take him to that high place He had anointed him for. But before that time came, he developed himself for it. First, he so mastered his skills of playing the harp and of relating to people that when the king of the land needed someone to play for him, he was the best hand that could be found around. Also, he used the opportunity he had to directly serve the king during that period to learn all he could learn about the palace life and how to be royal and majestic. In addition, he used his time in the army to learn and show all the people that he could lead them well, from victory to victory. So, when he was given a high rank in the army, all the troops and their officers as well were pleased with it. And when he eventually became king, the whole nation had no problem following him. (Cf. 1Sam 16:14-25; 1Sam 18:5)


So, again, I am saying that if you desire to be at the top someday in life and to also stay there, then, prepare yourself for it. Get the skills and the discipline you need to be there and to stay there. Also, drop whatever attitude or mentality you have that does not belong at the top. And may the good Lord Himself give you wings to rise to that place at the top that He has prepared for you in this life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


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PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE TOP  13/02/2024


“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training…” (1Cor 9:25NIV)


Most people start out in life desiring to be at the top. And nothing is wrong with that. That is because even God wants all His people to be at the top in life (Deut 28:13). That, of course, means there is enough room for everyone at the top. This, however, is not to say that all of us have to occupy the same office in life or be dignified in the same way. Rather, it means that each of us can distinguish himself from others in this life as unique through the things he does and by the way he does them. 


But will everyone end up at the top in life? No! Why? It is because it is not everyone that develops or trains himself for the top. As Paul shows us in our opening bible text, there is a measure of discipline that we must strictly put ourselves through in life in order to accomplish certain things or attain certain heights. Of course, accomplishing anything at all in this life goes beyond the amount of effort or skills we put into it. God Himself, the creator and ruler of all things, must also permit or enable us to accomplish what we set our hearts on accomplishing. Otherwise, whatever we do to get it done will not work. (Cf. Ps 127:1-2; Ecc 9:11)


However, even if God wants us to get something done or attain some position in life, if we do not possess the discipline or character needed to be there, we won’t get there. And even if by virtue of our relationship with some people we do get there, it won’t be long before we drive ourselves out of there through our lack of fitness or character.


So, if you desire to be at the top in any field of life, identify the discipline you require and strictly give yourself to getting it. Also, identify what discipline or skills you will need to stay at the top and begin to develop or acquire them. That is because one may possess what it takes to get to the top and not possess what it takes to stay there. Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, had all the natural advantages he needed to be at the top of the kingdom his father left behind for him. But he did not possess the character to remain at the top of it. Thus, he lost a very large part of it. What about King Saul? He had all the natural attributes needed to become king. But he lacked the qualities needed to retain the kingdom for himself and his descendants after him. (Cf. 1Sam 9-16; 1Kings 12)


If you, then, do not want to end up like any of these men, don’t just trust in God to lift you to the top, also begin to train yourself for the top. Remember Joseph. He not only trusted God to take him to the top in life; he also developed himself for the top. He used every opportunity he had to serve in life to train himself and to prove himself as someone that could be trusted with people and resources at any level and in any place, even in the prison. And when the time came for him to be set above a whole nation, nobody thought it was a bad idea to do so. (Cf. Gen 39-41)


Remember David too. Yes, he trusted God to take him to that high place He had anointed him for. But before that time came, he developed himself for it. First, he so mastered his skills of playing the harp and of relating to people that when the king of the land needed someone to play for him, he was the best hand that could be found around. Also, he used the opportunity he had to directly serve the king during that period to learn all he could learn about the palace life and how to be royal and majestic. In addition, he used his time in the army to learn and show all the people that he could lead them well, from victory to victory. So, when he was given a high rank in the army, all the troops and their officers as well were pleased with it. And when he eventually became king, the whole nation had no problem following him. (Cf. 1Sam 16:14-25; 1Sam 18:5)


So, again, I am saying that if you desire to be at the top someday in life and to also stay there, then, prepare yourself for it. Get the skills and the discipline you need to be there and to stay there. Also, drop whatever attitude or mentality you have that does not belong at the top. And may the good Lord Himself give you wings to rise to that place at the top that He has prepared for you in this life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.


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IT'S NOT ABOUT WHAT IS RIGHT IN YOUR EYES  12/02/2024

 “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” (Judg 21:25NKJV)


Why was everyone in Israel doing what was right in his own eyes, as we are shown in our opening bible text? It was because there was no king in the land. In other words, there was no leadership for the people. So, everyone was his own king – everyone did what was right in his own eyes.


Now observe that these people were not consciously trying to do wrong or to be wicked. Rather, they were trying to do what was right. But what was their yardstick for determining what was right or wrong? Individuals' thoughts and philosophies! So, if someone thought it was alright to forcefully take another man's wife because the man was not rich enough to take care of her, then, so be it.


But is it right to take another man's wife, whether forcefully or otherwise, even if the man is the poorest person on the face of the earth? No! How do we know that is not right? We know through God's revelation of what is right and what is wrong. Therefore, the reason it is wrong to do such a thing is that God, the author of life Himself, says that it is wrong and contrary to His purpose for creating us.


What is this telling us? It is telling us that life is not to be lived on the basis of what we think or believe to be right or wrong. Rather, it is to be lived on the basis of God's revelation. The Israelites at that time had God's revelation, even though they did not have any king over them. They had the book of God's law, which contained His revelation of what was right and what was wrong for them. So, they had no excuse for doing what was right in their own eyes. 


What we are saying is that the reason the Israelites of that time were all doing what was right in their own eyes was that they were ignoring God's revelation of how to live that had been given to them. And because they ignored His revelation, anarchy took over their land. So, it became a very dangerous place to live in or travel through. In fact, at some point, they almost annihilated themselves during a civil war over rape and homosexuality cases. (Cf. Judges 17-21)


In like manner, one major reason human relationships are not working in most places and our world is becoming more and more dangerous to live in is that people are rejecting or ignoring God's revelation of how to live, His revelation of what is right and what is wrong. In other words, they are living on the basis of what they think or believe is right for them. But as I said before, life is not to be lived on the basis of what we think is right for us but on the basis of what God says is right and what He says is wrong.


As long as we are living on the basis of what is right in our own eyes, lawlessness is bound to take over our lives at some point. Then we will find ourselves ruining our own lives and the lives of others and also destroying the same world we are seeking to make beautiful and enjoyable for ourselves. Perhaps this is already the case with you. Perhaps you are already ruining your life, your home and the lives of others around you because of your rejection of God's revelation for you. The only way out is to drop your ideas and philosophies about how to live and embrace God's way for you. That is because it is only His way that leads to life, joy and peace.


But will you do that? Will you humble yourself and accept that God's way is not only better than yours but is also the only way? You know whether you will do this and God also knows. My prayer, at any rate, is that you will accept His way as your way in every situation of your life, so that you can experience absolute peace and rest in life.


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IT'S NOT ABOUT WHAT IS RIGHT IN YOUR EYES  12/02/2024

 “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” (Judg 21:25NKJV)


Why was everyone in Israel doing what was right in his own eyes, as we are shown in our opening bible text? It was because there was no king in the land. In other words, there was no leadership for the people. So, everyone was his own king – everyone did what was right in his own eyes.


Now observe that these people were not consciously trying to do wrong or to be wicked. Rather, they were trying to do what was right. But what was their yardstick for determining what was right or wrong? Individuals' thoughts and philosophies! So, if someone thought it was alright to forcefully take another man's wife because the man was not rich enough to take care of her, then, so be it.


But is it right to take another man's wife, whether forcefully or otherwise, even if the man is the poorest person on the face of the earth? No! How do we know that is not right? We know through God's revelation of what is right and what is wrong. Therefore, the reason it is wrong to do such a thing is that God, the author of life Himself, says that it is wrong and contrary to His purpose for creating us.


What is this telling us? It is telling us that life is not to be lived on the basis of what we think or believe to be right or wrong. Rather, it is to be lived on the basis of God's revelation. The Israelites at that time had God's revelation, even though they did not have any king over them. They had the book of God's law, which contained His revelation of what was right and what was wrong for them. So, they had no excuse for doing what was right in their own eyes. 


What we are saying is that the reason the Israelites of that time were all doing what was right in their own eyes was that they were ignoring God's revelation of how to live that had been given to them. And because they ignored His revelation, anarchy took over their land. So, it became a very dangerous place to live in or travel through. In fact, at some point, they almost annihilated themselves during a civil war over rape and homosexuality cases. (Cf. Judges 17-21)


In like manner, one major reason human relationships are not working in most places and our world is becoming more and more dangerous to live in is that people are rejecting or ignoring God's revelation of how to live, His revelation of what is right and what is wrong. In other words, they are living on the basis of what they think or believe is right for them. But as I said before, life is not to be lived on the basis of what we think is right for us but on the basis of what God says is right and what He says is wrong.


As long as we are living on the basis of what is right in our own eyes, lawlessness is bound to take over our lives at some point. Then we will find ourselves ruining our own lives and the lives of others and also destroying the same world we are seeking to make beautiful and enjoyable for ourselves. Perhaps this is already the case with you. Perhaps you are already ruining your life, your home and the lives of others around you because of your rejection of God's revelation for you. The only way out is to drop your ideas and philosophies about how to live and embrace God's way for you. That is because it is only His way that leads to life, joy and peace.


But will you do that? Will you humble yourself and accept that God's way is not only better than yours but is also the only way? You know whether you will do this and God also knows. My prayer, at any rate, is that you will accept His way as your way in every situation of your life, so that you can experience absolute peace and rest in life.


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BENEFICIARIES OF ANGELIC MINISTRIES  11/02/2024


“At once the Spirit sent him out into the desert, and he was in the desert forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him.” (Mark 1:12-13NIV)


In different parts of the Scriptures are different accounts of angelic visitations and manifestations. And this is showing us that angels are real. But who are these angels? Well, as the bible tells us, they are ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation. (Cf. Heb 1:14)


So, first, angels are spirit beings. That explains why they are invisible and cannot be seen by men unless they are authorised by God to show themselves to us. Second, they are ministers or servants of God. That means they are not under man's authority but under God's. Yes, I have heard certain preachers say that they can instruct their angels to do certain things for them, especially when they are speaking in tongues. And they base this on what Paul says to the Corinthians about the possibility of believers speaking in the tongues of angels (1Cor 13:1). 


But Paul is not saying that if a believer is gifted to speak even in the tongues of the angels, he definitely can control or instruct God's angels. He is merely speaking about the uselessness of our ability to speak divinely enabled words if the love of God is not the basis for doing so. So, angels are not beings that we can control at will or by merely speaking in tongues. Rather, they are God's servants that function only on the basis of His instructions. 


For example, once when Satan tempted Jesus, he quoted a Scripture to Him, saying, “For it is written: 'He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'” (Matt 4:6NIV) Who will command His angels concerning Jesus? God! Even Satan knew this – he knew that the commander of the angels is God Himself. That was why he did not ask Jesus to command the angels to protect Him but to test God to see if He would command His angels to protect Him, if He should jump from the highest point of the temple. (Cf. Matt 4:5-7)


Also, when our Lord Jesus was about to be arrested, He said this to His disciples that were trying to fight for Him, “Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels?” (Matt 26:53NIV) Did you see that? He did not say I will command twelve legions of angels to do what I want. Instead, He said I will call on my Father, and He will at once put His angels at my disposal. And if the Lord did not see Himself as in a position to order God's angels around at will, when He was here on earth, we also should not see ourselves as being in that position.


The third thing we see in the bible about angels is that all of them are sent to serve those of us who are heirs of God and of His salvation. So, even though it is not in our place to command them to do anything, we are still ultimately the beneficiaries of their ministries. That is why we can ask God to give them command to minister to us in our moment of need.


For example, in the case of Jesus' arrest, which I mentioned above, the Lord made it clear that He could ask God for angelic support and He would get it. But He did not ask for it on that occasion for it would be contrary to the will of God, as revealed in Scriptures (Matt 26:52-54). But in our opening bible text we see that He received angelic support and ministration during His forty days and forty nights of fasting in the desert, when He was about to start His public ministry. And though He was being tempted by the devil then and also surrounded by wild animals, the angels around Him strengthened Him and equally protected Him.


In like manner, even if we too are surrounded by wild animals, dangerous people or wicked evil spirits that are trying to discourage us, pull us down or destroy us, we can get angelic support and ministration. That is because we are God's children and entitled to angelic support and ministration. All we need is to ask for it. Of course, God does not always wait for us to specifically ask for angelic support or ministration before He commands them on our behalf. He does this a lot of times without our knowledge or notice. But it will be a good thing if we can learn to consciously ask for angelic support and ministration anytime we are feeling the pressure or weight of life's challenges and circumstances and we feel abandoned or all alone. 


Remember how Daniel was saved by an angel of God from those deadly lions when he was thrown into their den (Dan 6:22). Remember also how Peter was rescued by an angel from the claws of that ruthless king, Herod (Acts 12:6-11). Also, remember how an angel of God came to strengthen Jesus during those last dark hours that He spent praying in anguish before He went to the cross (Luke 22:41-44). So, regardless of how dangerous the trials or temptations may be, we too can get ministered to or supported by God's holy angels because we are ordained to enjoy their ministry. All we need is to just ask for it.


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YOU CAN LIVE AN EFFECTIVE CHRISTIAN LIFE  10/02/2024


“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” (2Peter 1:3-4NIV) 


Peter says God’s divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness. God Himself has done this. So, all that you need to live the kind of life God wants you to live has already been made available by Him. The same thing goes for me. Notice that Peter does not say that God will provide these things; rather, he says that God has already provided them – He has already made them available. 


Now I may not know these things that He has provided. I may not be enjoying them. I may not know how to take advantage of them. But they are already there for me. This is why Peter further says from verse 5 of that chapter:


“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (2Peter 1:5-8NIV) 


So, we can actually live effective and productive lives. Think about that. You can live an effective Christian life. You can live a productive Christian life. You can live a life that is meaningful and that will attract people to God. 


Again, Peter says the grace to do these things has already been made available. His words are: “God’s divine power has given to us everything we need for life and godliness.” All the necessary qualities for you to live an effective and productive life have been made available to you. 


Perhaps you say, “Where am I going to get them from?” They are already there in you. So, don’t say, “I can’t be patient.” Just be patient. Don’t say, “I can’t be humble.” Just be humble. Don’t say, “I cannot love.” Just love, for the ability to love is there already in you. You are, then, the one to decide and say, “I am going to love. I am going to be patient. I am going to be knowledgeable in the things of God and in the things of life.” And if you, as Peter points out, possess these qualities in increasing measure, you will not be ineffective or unproductive in life.


My point, all along, is that the grace for us to live the kind of life God wants us to live here in this world has already been made available. But someone may say, “I can’t do these things myself.” No, you cannot. That is why you have the Spirit of God in you. Do you know that the presence of the Spirit of God in you is a manifestation of His grace? God knows that we cannot do anything by ourselves. He knows that we cannot please Him by ourselves. Pleasing Him is far beyond us. But with His Spirit in us, we can do so. And since you have His Spirit in you, go ahead and live a fruitful, productive and effective Christian life.

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IS IT OF ANY VALUE TO US? 09/02/2024


“Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us, just as they did, but the message they heard was of no value to them, because they did not share the faith of those who obeyed.” (Hebrews 4:1-3NIV) 


The writer of the book of Hebrews is speaking to us here about the people Moses brought out of Egypt. He led them out of Egypt in order to bring them into the land God had promised to give them. Unfortunately, most of them could not enter the land. Why could they not enter? It was because of unbelief. We are told in the last verse of the third chapter of this book that they could not enter God’s rest because of unbelief. They wandered in the wilderness for forty years and perished there, never arriving at where God had wanted them to be.


Therefore, we are told to watch ourselves so that we do not experience what they experienced, so that things do not end up for us the way they ended up for them. What happened to them, according to Scriptures, happened to serve as an example to us. And it is showing us that it is not enough for us to start walking with God; we must also finish. True faith in God is always from start to finish. It is not something that quits or that gets tired on the way. It is always from start to finish.


Well, we are told here what is responsible for the failure of these people to enter God’s rest. They heard the word of God. But the message, the good news, they heard was of no value to them. The word did not profit them. Why? It was because they did not combine it with faith; they did not mix it with faith. And we are told this because the word of God has come to us as well, just as it came to them. In fact, His word has kept coming to us, showing us how to live, walk and please God. But is this word of any value to us? Is this word producing in us the results God wants it to produce in our lives? 


The word of God will not produce in us the results God wants it to produce in our lives, if we do not combine it with faith or accept it in faith. We have to see His word as He sees it. We have to take His word as He takes it. Whatever He says to us about Himself is what we must accept as the reality. Whatever He says to us about ourselves is what we must accept as the reality. Whatever He says to us about life is what we must accept as the reality about it. We must accept anything He says to us about anything as the reality, the only truth we are to act on. Otherwise, what He says to us will be of no value to us.


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ALWAYS BE HUNGRY AND THIRSTY FOR HIS FULLNESS 08/02/2024


“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (NIV) 


Can you see that? Our Lord Jesus came so that we may experience fullness of life. And if you are complacent, you cannot experience life to the full. If you are complacent, you cannot be all that God wants you to be in life or accomplish all that He wants you to accomplish. The moment you are complacent, the moment you think that your life is okay as it is and that you do not need to be a better man, woman, husband, wife, child, Christian or citizen, you are already on your way out of relevance and out of this world. You are already dead, even though you are alive, and your life has begun to decompose and decay. 


You need to understand that as long as you are alive in this world, you cannot have any false sense of self-satisfaction. It will keep you from looking ahead to becoming the person God wants you to be and to having what He wants you to have. It will make you crest. And once you crest in that sense, you can only depreciate in character and usefulness. 


God, however, does not want us to crest in life. What He wants is for us to continually hunger and thirst for fullness of Him and of the life that He purchased for us in Christ. So, we must always look forward to what can be instead of fixing our gaze on what is. Of course, we must be thankful for what we are and what we have. And we must not get ourselves involved in anything that is contrary to the will of God in order to be where we want to be or have what we want to have. But we must always be hungry and thirsty for more of God and more of life. Otherwise, our lives will stagnate.



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FOLLOW THEM AS THEY FOLLOW CHRIST 07/02/2024


“Follow me, as I follow Christ.” (Cf. 1Cor 11:1)


Those are Paul’s words to us. So, if a leader is not following Christ, you don’t follow him. You don’t follow him in his error or wickedness. But as long as you are under his leadership, you must obey his instructions that are not contrary to the will of God. If you are not comfortable with his leadership, you can get out of his space of authority. 


For example, if you are not comfortable with the leadership of your boss and cannot submit to him, resign. Also, if you cannot submit to the laws of your country, you can leave for another country. I am saying this because God is never going to take sides with a rebel. 


Mind you, there are relationships in which it is not easy to just leave our leaders because they are not living right or because we are not comfortable with their leadership. For instance, you cannot easily change your parents. Yes, you may disown your parents by words of mouth. But that is not going to change the fact that they gave birth to you and are your blood. So, you are stuck with them forever. And you will have to learn to deal with them, if they are often asking you to do things that are contrary to the will of God.


What about the relationship between the husband and his wife? Can that easily be changed? No! You cannot change your husband at will. So, you have to learn to live with him and cope with his errors or excesses. Am I saying it is compulsory you remain in a marriage with anybody? No! That is not what I am saying. But you must understand that God hates divorce, even though it cannot be avoided in some situations (Malachi 2:16). And as long as your husband is not asking you to do anything that is contrary to the will of God, you have to obey him. He may not be living right. But that won’t be an excuse that is acceptable in the sight of God for disobeying him. 


Then we also have the relationship between soldiers and their commanders as one of those relationships in which you cannot easily disengage yourself. In fact, Solomon tells us that no soldier, if not injured or incapacitated, is discharged in time of war (Ecclesiastes 8:8). So, leaving the army or leaving a leader in the army that is not walking in the will of God may not be an easy thing for a soldier. That being the case, it is on him to learn how to relate to him and not allow his feelings to rob him of his responsibility to carefully obey his commands, as long as they are not contrary to the will of God. 


Mind you, even if the command of your leader in the army is contrary to the will of God and the principles of engagement in the military, you may not be able to easily walk away from it without some consequences. So, you have to be sure that your disobedience to a direct order from your military leader is because that order is contrary to the will of God. Otherwise, and unless you are shown mercy, you will not have God’s protection.


For example, there was a time that King Saul commanded his guards to execute the all the priests of God in a place called Nob. And he did that because of his hot jealousy for David and his determination to destroy him. But his guards, as the bible points out, were not willing to raise their hands against the Lord’s anointed priests, especially when they had not done anything wrong. Yes, he eventually got a foolish man to do his dirty job that day. But the men with him would not obey his order. (Cf. 1Samuel 22:6-23)


Now what did Saul do to those men who refused to obey his order to kill God’s priests? Nothing! He just allowed them to be. Why? I guess that was a miracle. A cruel and demonised king like Saul would naturally treat such disobedience as treason. But as far as the information we have in the bible is concerned, he did not do anything to those men. And as I said, that must have been because God was protecting them. 


What about the midwives of the Hebrew women when they were still in Egypt, Shiphrah and Puah? Did they obey Pharoah when he ordered them to kill at birth every male child of the Hebrew women? No! Why? The bible says that it was because they feared God. And did Pharoah touch them for disobeying him in this manner? No! Why? God was protecting them! In fact, God went on to reward those women by giving them families of their own. So, God is able to protect us from any leader, however cruel the leader may be, even if it is in the army, as long as we are walking in His will. (Cf. Exodus 1:15-22)


So, in following any leader, be sure you follow them to the degree that they are walking in the will of God. 



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IF ANYONE DESTROYS GOD’S TEMPLE 06/02/2024


“Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him; for God's temple is sacred, and you are that temple.” (1Cor 3:16-17NIV)


There is this erroneous belief among many all around the world that the temple of God is a physical structure. This explains why so much money goes into the building and the care of church auditoriums every year and in many places in the world. It also explains why enemies of the Christian faith often think once they destroy a church meeting place, they have destroyed a temple of God. 


But while it is true that magnificent temples had been built for God in the past, temples that He Himself put His blessings on, it does not change the fact that no earthly structure is fit to house Him. So, He says this to us: “Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. Where is the house you will build for me? Where will my resting place be? Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?” (Isa 66:1-2NIV) In addition, He says, “I live in a high and holy place, but also with him who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite.” (Isa 57:15NIV)


Can you relate to that? God does not live in physical buildings, however grand or magnificent they may be. That is because His hand made everything. Nevertheless, as He Himself has pointed out, He does live in people, in human beings. And this is why Paul, in our opening bible text, tells us that people are God’s temple. Every child of God is the temple of God; he is the house in which God resides. So then, when Paul goes on to say that anyone who destroys God’s temple, God will destroy, he is implying that anyone who destroys a child of God, God will destroy.


Now that is remarkable. Paul does not say, “If anyone destroys a church meeting place, God will destroy him.” Why? Is it because God is not concerned about the place in which His people meet? No! He is concerned about anything that concerns His people. However, He is much more concerned about people’s lives than any other thing. All the things we see in this world and use are bound to perish someday; they will not be forever. But people are spirit beings and so are going to live forever, even though they all have to shed their mortal bodies. This is why God is more interested in them and their eternity than anything else.


Therefore, we need to be careful how we treat people, especially children of God who have Him living in them. We need to be careful that we do not consciously or unconsciously do anything that will ruin their lives or make them unfit for God to live in and use to accomplish His purpose. That is because anyone who gets careless in this matter and becomes responsible for the pollution or destruction or fall of any child of God, as Paul tells us in our opening bible text, will be not be held guiltless by Him. Such a person will surely be destroyed.


Think about this: if God was willing to kill people for merely looking inside the Ark of His Covenant with Israel or for taking hold of it, an ark that was just a symbol of His presence among the Israelites, can you imagine how He will judge anyone that harms any one of His children, who are His real dwelling place? That is beyond contemplation. (Cf. 1Sam 6:19-20; 2Sam 6:6-7)


So, watch yourself very carefully in relating to the children of God in your life, so that you do not foolishly do to them something that will make God destroy you. And if there is anything you know that you are doing that is hurting, polluting or misleading any of them at the moment, lose no time to repent of it. That is because the time given for your repentance may just be close to its expiration. And if you don’t do the right thing before it expires, you may not just live to tell the story.  


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A VICTIM OF DRUNKENNESS 05/02/2024


“On the seventh day, when King Xerxes was in high spirits from wine, he commanded the seven eunuchs who served him — Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carcas — to bring before him Queen Vashti, wearing her royal crown, in order to display her beauty to the people and nobles, for she was lovely to look at. But when the attendants delivered the king's command, Queen Vashti refused to come. Then the king became furious and burned with anger.” (Est 1:10-12NIV)


Why, as we see in our opening bible text, did King Xerxes order Queen Vashti to be brought before him to display her beauty? It was because he was drunk. Yes, we are told that he was in high spirits from wine that day. But that is just a euphemism for being drunk. The man was actually drunk, drunk and excited. And it was because he was drunk and excited and could not think clearly that he ordered his wife, the queen, to come and parade her beauty before his drunk officials and friends.


But the queen would not do that. Why? Was it because she was proud? No! There is nothing in the account to suggest that she was a proud woman. To say the fact, if she had been a proud woman, she would most likely not have been made queen. But when we consider the fact that the king and all his officials were already drunk when he asked her to show up, we can safely assume that it was for her honour and safety that she did not show up.


We are talking about her majesty here, someone that most people could not freely see or interact with at the time. Even all the men that would attend to her had to be castrated, so that there wouldn’t be stories in the palace. Yet it was this same woman that the king commanded to show up before his drunk friends and officials to parade her beauty. 


Now would showing up to parade her beauty in that manner not require that she wear something revealing or dance seductively? It would most likely require that. Also, would that not give the drunk officials of this king an opportunity to insult her or molest her? It would most likely give room for that to happen. 


So, even though disobeying the king’s command was not something Vashti would naturally want to do, she must have felt that the best thing for her to do on that occasion was to disobey him and later face the consequences. But did she think the consequences of disobeying that foolish order would be as terrible as it later was? I don’t think so. 


Well, King Xerxes, as we are further told in the account, got so angry with this woman because of her disobedience that he lost no time in getting his counsellors together to decide on the matter. And when they were done, she was deposed and forbidden from showing up before the king forever. (Cf. Esther 1:13-22)


But was it this woman’s fault that she fell from grace to grass? No! She was just a victim of circumstances, a victim of the drunkenness of a very powerful man. I know there are preachers that have taught that God deliberately brought down Vashti in order to lift Esther up to her position. But that is erroneous. It is actually like saying that God brought down Joseph and sent him to prison in order to lift up whoever took over his position as the manager of Potiphar’s house. Do you know how ridiculous that would sound?


Did Joseph do anything wrong to find himself in the prison? No! The only reason he found himself in that prison was that he stood his ground against infidelity. In like manner, the only reason Vashti was deposed was that she would not allow her womanhood to be defiled or ridiculed. Yes, she had to suffer for it, as Joseph also had to suffer for standing for purity. But that was not God at work at all but the devil.


For us to know that it was not God that did that but the devil, we are further shown in the account that when Xerxes later became sober and was free from the influence of alcohol, he began to think about his wife and what he had done to her in his moment of drunkenness and anger. He was so disturbed with her thought that his personal assistants could tell that something was wrong. But it was already too late. There was nothing he could do to restore her to grace again, for the law that was used in judging her was irrevocable. (Cf. Esther 2:1-2) 


So, Vashti was just a victim of the error of her powerful husband. And there are many like her today who are simply victims of the errors of certain people in their lives or world. There have, for instance, been people who have lost their jobs because their bosses quarrelled with their spouses before coming to work and transferred the aggression to them. And there have been people that died in the hands of some drunk or depressed or sleepy drivers. 


Such things happen from time to time. And the only one that can keep us from becoming their victims is God. So, as often as you pray, remember to tell God to keep you and all the people that are dear to you from becoming victims of human errors or flaws.


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A VICTIM OF DRUNKENNESS 05/02/2024


“On the seventh day, when King Xerxes was in high spirits from wine, he commanded the seven eunuchs who served him — Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carcas — to bring before him Queen Vashti, wearing her royal crown, in order to display her beauty to the people and nobles, for she was lovely to look at. But when the attendants delivered the king's command, Queen Vashti refused to come. Then the king became furious and burned with anger.” (Est 1:10-12NIV)


Why, as we see in our opening bible text, did King Xerxes order Queen Vashti to be brought before him to display her beauty? It was because he was drunk. Yes, we are told that he was in high spirits from wine that day. But that is just a euphemism for being drunk. The man was actually drunk, drunk and excited. And it was because he was drunk and excited and could not think clearly that he ordered his wife, the queen, to come and parade her beauty before his drunk officials and friends.


But the queen would not do that. Why? Was it because she was proud? No! There is nothing in the account to suggest that she was a proud woman. To say the fact, if she had been a proud woman, she would most likely not have been made queen. But when we consider the fact that the king and all his officials were already drunk when he asked her to show up, we can safely assume that it was for her honour and safety that she did not show up.


We are talking about her majesty here, someone that most people could not freely see or interact with at the time. Even all the men that would attend to her had to be castrated, so that there wouldn’t be stories in the palace. Yet it was this same woman that the king commanded to show up before his drunk friends and officials to parade her beauty. 


Now would showing up to parade her beauty in that manner not require that she wear something revealing or dance seductively? It would most likely require that. Also, would that not give the drunk officials of this king an opportunity to insult her or molest her? It would most likely give room for that to happen. 


So, even though disobeying the king’s command was not something Vashti would naturally want to do, she must have felt that the best thing for her to do on that occasion was to disobey him and later face the consequences. But did she think the consequences of disobeying that foolish order would be as terrible as it later was? I don’t think so. 


Well, King Xerxes, as we are further told in the account, got so angry with this woman because of her disobedience that he lost no time in getting his counsellors together to decide on the matter. And when they were done, she was deposed and forbidden from showing up before the king forever. (Cf. Esther 1:13-22)


But was it this woman’s fault that she fell from grace to grass? No! She was just a victim of circumstances, a victim of the drunkenness of a very powerful man. I know there are preachers that have taught that God deliberately brought down Vashti in order to lift Esther up to her position. But that is erroneous. It is actually like saying that God brought down Joseph and sent him to prison in order to lift up whoever took over his position as the manager of Potiphar’s house. Do you know how ridiculous that would sound?


Did Joseph do anything wrong to find himself in the prison? No! The only reason he found himself in that prison was that he stood his ground against infidelity. In like manner, the only reason Vashti was deposed was that she would not allow her womanhood to be defiled or ridiculed. Yes, she had to suffer for it, as Joseph also had to suffer for standing for purity. But that was not God at work at all but the devil.


For us to know that it was not God that did that but the devil, we are further shown in the account that when Xerxes later became sober and was free from the influence of alcohol, he began to think about his wife and what he had done to her in his moment of drunkenness and anger. He was so disturbed with her thought that his personal assistants could tell that something was wrong. But it was already too late. There was nothing he could do to restore her to grace again, for the law that was used in judging her was irrevocable. (Cf. Esther 2:1-2) 


So, Vashti was just a victim of the error of her powerful husband. And there are many like her today who are simply victims of the errors of certain people in their lives or world. There have, for instance, been people who have lost their jobs because their bosses quarrelled with their spouses before coming to work and transferred the aggression to them. And there have been people that died in the hands of some drunk or depressed or sleepy drivers. 


Such things happen from time to time. And the only one that can keep us from becoming their victims is God. So, as often as you pray, remember to tell God to keep you and all the people that are dear to you from becoming victims of human errors or flaws.


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A VICTIM OF DRUNKENNESS 05/02/2024


“On the seventh day, when King Xerxes was in high spirits from wine, he commanded the seven eunuchs who served him — Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carcas — to bring before him Queen Vashti, wearing her royal crown, in order to display her beauty to the people and nobles, for she was lovely to look at. But when the attendants delivered the king's command, Queen Vashti refused to come. Then the king became furious and burned with anger.” (Est 1:10-12NIV)


Why, as we see in our opening bible text, did King Xerxes order Queen Vashti to be brought before him to display her beauty? It was because he was drunk. Yes, we are told that he was in high spirits from wine that day. But that is just a euphemism for being drunk. The man was actually drunk, drunk and excited. And it was because he was drunk and excited and could not think clearly that he ordered his wife, the queen, to come and parade her beauty before his drunk officials and friends.


But the queen would not do that. Why? Was it because she was proud? No! There is nothing in the account to suggest that she was a proud woman. To say the fact, if she had been a proud woman, she would most likely not have been made queen. But when we consider the fact that the king and all his officials were already drunk when he asked her to show up, we can safely assume that it was for her honour and safety that she did not show up.


We are talking about her majesty here, someone that most people could not freely see or interact with at the time. Even all the men that would attend to her had to be castrated, so that there wouldn’t be stories in the palace. Yet it was this same woman that the king commanded to show up before his drunk friends and officials to parade her beauty. 


Now would showing up to parade her beauty in that manner not require that she wear something revealing or dance seductively? It would most likely require that. Also, would that not give the drunk officials of this king an opportunity to insult her or molest her? It would most likely give room for that to happen. 


So, even though disobeying the king’s command was not something Vashti would naturally want to do, she must have felt that the best thing for her to do on that occasion was to disobey him and later face the consequences. But did she think the consequences of disobeying that foolish order would be as terrible as it later was? I don’t think so. 


Well, King Xerxes, as we are further told in the account, got so angry with this woman because of her disobedience that he lost no time in getting his counsellors together to decide on the matter. And when they were done, she was deposed and forbidden from showing up before the king forever. (Cf. Esther 1:13-22)


But was it this woman’s fault that she fell from grace to grass? No! She was just a victim of circumstances, a victim of the drunkenness of a very powerful man. I know there are preachers that have taught that God deliberately brought down Vashti in order to lift Esther up to her position. But that is erroneous. It is actually like saying that God brought down Joseph and sent him to prison in order to lift up whoever took over his position as the manager of Potiphar’s house. Do you know how ridiculous that would sound?


Did Joseph do anything wrong to find himself in the prison? No! The only reason he found himself in that prison was that he stood his ground against infidelity. In like manner, the only reason Vashti was deposed was that she would not allow her womanhood to be defiled or ridiculed. Yes, she had to suffer for it, as Joseph also had to suffer for standing for purity. But that was not God at work at all but the devil.


For us to know that it was not God that did that but the devil, we are further shown in the account that when Xerxes later became sober and was free from the influence of alcohol, he began to think about his wife and what he had done to her in his moment of drunkenness and anger. He was so disturbed with her thought that his personal assistants could tell that something was wrong. But it was already too late. There was nothing he could do to restore her to grace again, for the law that was used in judging her was irrevocable. (Cf. Esther 2:1-2) 


So, Vashti was just a victim of the error of her powerful husband. And there are many like her today who are simply victims of the errors of certain people in their lives or world. There have, for instance, been people who have lost their jobs because their bosses quarrelled with their spouses before coming to work and transferred the aggression to them. And there have been people that died in the hands of some drunk or depressed or sleepy drivers. 


Such things happen from time to time. And the only one that can keep us from becoming their victims is God. So, as often as you pray, remember to tell God to keep you and all the people that are dear to you from becoming victims of human errors or flaws.


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A VICTIM OF DRUNKENNESS 05/02/2024


“On the seventh day, when King Xerxes was in high spirits from wine, he commanded the seven eunuchs who served him — Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carcas — to bring before him Queen Vashti, wearing her royal crown, in order to display her beauty to the people and nobles, for she was lovely to look at. But when the attendants delivered the king's command, Queen Vashti refused to come. Then the king became furious and burned with anger.” (Est 1:10-12NIV)


Why, as we see in our opening bible text, did King Xerxes order Queen Vashti to be brought before him to display her beauty? It was because he was drunk. Yes, we are told that he was in high spirits from wine that day. But that is just a euphemism for being drunk. The man was actually drunk, drunk and excited. And it was because he was drunk and excited and could not think clearly that he ordered his wife, the queen, to come and parade her beauty before his drunk officials and friends.


But the queen would not do that. Why? Was it because she was proud? No! There is nothing in the account to suggest that she was a proud woman. To say the fact, if she had been a proud woman, she would most likely not have been made queen. But when we consider the fact that the king and all his officials were already drunk when he asked her to show up, we can safely assume that it was for her honour and safety that she did not show up.


We are talking about her majesty here, someone that most people could not freely see or interact with at the time. Even all the men that would attend to her had to be castrated, so that there wouldn’t be stories in the palace. Yet it was this same woman that the king commanded to show up before his drunk friends and officials to parade her beauty. 


Now would showing up to parade her beauty in that manner not require that she wear something revealing or dance seductively? It would most likely require that. Also, would that not give the drunk officials of this king an opportunity to insult her or molest her? It would most likely give room for that to happen. 


So, even though disobeying the king’s command was not something Vashti would naturally want to do, she must have felt that the best thing for her to do on that occasion was to disobey him and later face the consequences. But did she think the consequences of disobeying that foolish order would be as terrible as it later was? I don’t think so. 


Well, King Xerxes, as we are further told in the account, got so angry with this woman because of her disobedience that he lost no time in getting his counsellors together to decide on the matter. And when they were done, she was deposed and forbidden from showing up before the king forever. (Cf. Esther 1:13-22)


But was it this woman’s fault that she fell from grace to grass? No! She was just a victim of circumstances, a victim of the drunkenness of a very powerful man. I know there are preachers that have taught that God deliberately brought down Vashti in order to lift Esther up to her position. But that is erroneous. It is actually like saying that God brought down Joseph and sent him to prison in order to lift up whoever took over his position as the manager of Potiph