Synopsis of My Sermon at Cathedral Church of St. Peter Asaba today 16th July, 2017
Topic: Obeying God Courageously
Text: Act 5: 26 – 29
Food for Thought: A true disciple of Christ, in all things denies his own will, however pleasing, and does the will of God, however painful.
Introduction: Obedience is doing what God says not counting the cost or implications. It was Emmons in PowerBible Online that said, “Obedience to God is the most infallible evidence of sincere and supreme love for him.” We have so many passages in the scriptures of men and women that were courageous in obeying God. Abraham (Genesis 22:1 – 3), Daniel and 3 Hebrew friends, Mary, mother of Jesus and the Apostles as we have in Acts 5:17 – 32 as examples.
Development: In our text is a challenging story for Christians of today. Since I became a Christian, I have never seen Christians as fearful as what we have in this decade. I always wonder where we have kept Christ our Saviour. The Apostles were remanded in prison for preaching and doing miracles in the name of Jesus. But an angel of God opened the prison and brought them out with the command to go back and continue preaching. They obeyed God’s instruction through the angel and went back to preach. If it were you and I of this generation, we will not go back again. These Apostles knew there was danger in facing the Chief priest and Sadducees that crucified Jesus Christ. If they could arrest and crucified Jesus, their case would have been a small one but that didn’t deter them. We know how the story ended.
- It takes faith to obey God courageously as we have in the case of these Apostles, Abraham, Daniel, etc. This implies that courageous obedience is the fruit of faith. If your faith is not strong you cannot obey God fully and courageously. An example of this is in payment of tithe. If you don’t have faith, you won’t believe that your salary will be enough for you and your family for the month.
- Courageous obedience goes with conflicts, trials and temptations. We know the case of Job that it was his resolve to obey God that made Satan to afflict him with sickness. We know what the resolve of Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego led to. What of Daniel, Jeremiah and others? That we have conflicts, temptations and trials going with courageous obedience doesn’t mean that we should be scare of obeying God.
- Courageous obedience attracts God’s intervention and blessings. We saw it in the case of Abraham, Jeremiah, Daniel, Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego, and the Apostles. In the case of Abraham, God said, “By myself I have sworn, says the Lord, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son – blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice.” Note also the aftermath of the deliverance of Daniel from Lion’s den, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego from the burning furnace. God does not only intervene, He also blesses us when we obey Him courageously.
Application: Beloved, obedience to God is a command. Seneca Snr says, “We are born subjects and to obey God is perfect liberty. He that does this shall be free, safe and happy.” You can only find peace and be at liberty when you courageously obey and serve God. It is also a way to reach our desired goals in life. Today, many people are living in fear and can notice that in their prayers which are targeted against the enemies instead of asking for the blessings of God. Look at the example of the apostles! They didn’t begin to bind the powers of Chief Priest and Sadducees rather they asked for more boldness to preach the gospel.
Conclusion: Fear is evidence of love for the things of the world while courageous obedience is an evidence of a crucified life. Have you been crucified with Christ? If yes, continue to live for him without counting the cost or implications. If not, know that you are in danger and needs repentance. Today, as you accept Jesus into your life as Lord and Saviour, He will grant you the courage to live for Him and to obey Him.
Let us pray: Thank God for His word. If you are here and you haven’t made Jesus your Lord and Saviour, pray and ask God to forgive you, accept Him into your life and ask Him to grant you the grace to live for and obey Him courageously henceforth. If you have been obeying God, ask for grace to continue to obey Him.
NB: DEAR READER, IF YOU HAVE NOT GIVEN YOUR LIFE TO CHRIST AND YOU ARE TOUCHED TO DO SO NOW, SAY THIS PRAYER:
Lord God, I come to you this day. I have been living in sin but your word has touched my heart. I repent of my sin. I acknowledge that I am responsible for my sinfulness. Have mercy upon me and forgive all my sins. Today, I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour. Lord Jesus Christ, forgive my sins and blot out my name from the book of death and write my name in the life. Grant me the grace I need to live for you especially the grace to obey courageously. I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ my Lord and Saviour. Amen.
You can reach me for counseling and prayers on this place or write to me on firstname.lastname@example.org and I will arrange a chat with you. God bless you and have a great week.