He Comforts The Downcast

Devotion for Thursday November 30, 2017

Topic: He Comforts The Downcast

Text: 2 Corinthians 7:5 – 11

Paul was beset by fear and concern for Titus and the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 2:13). But God had encouraged him at the right time with the arrival of Titus. Being reunited with a fellow labourer in Christ brought him joy. But more than that, the news Titus brought from Corinth was enough cause for joy too. God gives us consolation when we are anxious and depressed. The consolations Paul enjoyed were from God, no matter the instrument used. Paul acknowledged God who was the author of the consolation he received. Titus brought him a most satisfactory report of the success of his epistle, and the good state of the Corinthian Church; a boost for his missionary work.

Many a time, we are often discouraged. We look for consolation and comfort as we labour for God and none seem to come. People we work amongst them even frustrate us. The devil and his agents are also on one side fighting against the work we do and we seem very discouraged. At other times, it seems too that God has withdrawn his grace from us. However, in whatever situation we find ourselves, God has ways of comforting us. When Gideon was so discouraged and frustrated, an angel of God brought comfort and encouragement. Are you down and discouraged? God will definitely bring comfort and consolation for you. He will cause your fears to go and your tears to dry in Jesus name. Amen

Food for Thought: 2 Corinthians 1:5

Memory verse: 2 Corinthians 7:6

Prayer: Comfort me O God, in all areas I am discouraged and in need in Jesus name Amen.

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What Is Acceptable To God

Devotion for Wednesday November 1, 2017

Topic: What Is Acceptable To God

Text: Romans 12:1

It is not everything we do that God approves and accepts. He accepted the sacrifice of Abel and showed disdain to that of Cain. Also He does not accept the act of not entirely depending on Him (Isaiah 31:1). God does not accept sacrifice that is not holy or anything not pleasing to Him. In this our text for the day, Paul exhorts us to present our bodies as living sacrifices. This means that we should dedicate and devote our souls and bodies to the service of God and His glory. Christians should offer up their lives unto God as a whole burnt offering. This must be voluntary as you are expected to do it (present yourself). It must be a living sacrifice; a holy sacrifice, a reasonable sacrifice, otherwise God will not accept it.

Have you offered yourself as a sacrifice that is acceptable to God? Your commitment should be reasonable and not offensive to God. A life that has been sacrificed to God as a living, holy and reasonable sacrifice is seen in its dependence of God for direction and instruction in everything. The person lives according to detects of God. Christians shouldn’t invent services, or make trials, or seek persecutions or provoke opposition so as to be seen as serving and suffering for Christ’s sake. They should do just what God requires of them, and that will be acceptable to Him.

When what we do is acceptable to God that will be the greatest recompense we can get because not everybody will have the privilege to serve God. If He approves what we do, what men think of us doesn’t matter. Therefore, to please Him should be our highest aim in this new month and we will certainly reap the benefits. Happy New Month!

Food for Thought: God’s priority and what He accepts matters. Is this your guiding principle in this heavenly race?

Memory verse: Romans 12:1

Prayer: Grant me, O Lord, the understanding of what you accept so that I can make them my priority in this heavenly race in Jesus name Amen.

Contrary Behaviour

Devotion for Monday October 30, 2017

Topic: Contrary Behaviour

Text: Titus 1:15 – 16

Contrary means conflicting, opposite, obstructing or hindering progress. Anything we say or do that is opposite of what is ideal can be termed contrary behaviour. In the days of Paul and Titus, there were some false teachers of the word of God even as we have them today. These teachers of Jewish fables and carnal ordinances profess to know and serve God, yet their immoral lives are evidence of denial of Him. Thus they became abominable both to God and man, disobedient to the law and averse to every god work. See Romans 1:28; 2 Timothy 3:5, 8 and Jude 1:4.

Our text for the day teaches us that hypocrites are generally great professors of faith; they profess great knowledge of God and great zeal for Him. Again, our bible reading teaches us that to deny God is a very heinous sin and an abominable wickedness. However, there are some people who are genuinely zealous.

We deny God in two ways: first, in our words and secondly in our actions. Is your behaviour contrary to your profession of Christian faith? Contrary behaviour manifests when we are still living in sin but seriously active in the church. Such person is a deceit and hypocrite. If you belong to that group, turn away from such behaviour (2 Timothy 3:5) because you will be disappointed on the last day. If you have been following such teachers/people whose lives are contrary to the gospel message they preach, turn away from them because they will lead you astray in this Christian race.

Food for Thought: Live well as a Christian because you may be the bible you unbelieving neighbour will have the opportunity to read.

Memory verse: 2 Timothy 3:5

Prayer: Help me O Lord my God, to remove any contrary behaviour in my life

Hypocrisy Destroys The Church

Devotion for Saturday August 19, 2017

Topic: Hypocrisy Destroys The Church

Text: Galatians 2:11 – 18

Hypocrisy is a very dangerous character that can lead to betrayal, gossip, pretences, falsehood and many other evils. Anyone who is hypocritical can even kill. Hypocrites are deceivers and tempters (Mark 12:15). They are always deceptive in their words and actions. Beware of such people who are hypocrites in nature.

Paul, speaking in defence of Christians and circumcision gave instance of how Peter and some Jews played hypocrisy by refraining themselves from eating with the Gentiles when James sent some Jews from Jerusalem to Antioch. They separated from the converted Gentiles and acted to convince the Jews that they still believed the law to be of moral obligation. They followed Peter and disguised their sentiments. They knew that the Jewish ceremonial laws was done away by the gospel, and had practically acknowledged it by eating with the Gentiles, however, they were afraid to avow their true convictions. This was hypocrisy at the highest level and more worrisome is the fact that it came from Peter who was adjudged a leader of the church. This made Paul to challenge him (Galatians 2:14).

There are many ways people play hypocrisy in our present day Christianity. Some claim they are born again Christians but don’t trust God to protect and care for them. Thus they depend on other sources for their protection and providence. Some people are still living in obvious sins and deeply involved in church programmes and activities. They are hypocrites and in such cases, the spirit of God can hardly dwell in such a church where they claim to be worshipping. If you are not done with sin, why take a seat at the centre of church services and programmes? Why will a church leader see a member of his/her church living in obvious sin and keep mum? Such inaction destroys the church too. To enjoy the presence of God in our churches, we must do away with hypocrites.

Food for Thought: “Of all the things in the world that stink in the nostril of men, hypocrisy is the worst” – Charles Spurgeon.

Memory verse: Galatians 2:13

Prayer: God heal me of any spirit of hypocrisy in me through the mercies of our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.

A Reward For Our Actions

Devotion for Tuesday August 8, 2017

Topic: A Reward For Our Actions

Text: 2 Corinthians 5:9 – 11

This world is world of opposites; good or bad, man or woman, love or hatred, selfish or selfless, angry or happy, etc. God gave to man the will to makes choices at creation. “Man’s power of choice enables him to think like an angel or a devil, a king or a slave. Whatever he chooses, mind will create,” so Frederick Bailes. The power to make choices given to man will be his greatest undoing if we misused it.

Paul charges us here to walk well in our Christian life so as to please God because we shall account of ourselves before the judgement seat of Christ, where He, whose religion we profess will judge us according to its precepts and the grace bestowed on us. We need a conviction that we will stand at the judgement seat of Christ, and receive rewards according to the deeds done in the body, prudent and lead lives that will make us acceptable to Him and this is only possible with Christ-like life we are living here.

We note these facts from our scriptural reading.

1) The necessity of the judgement – We must, willing or unwilling

2) The universality of the judgement – We must all be judged

3) We will be judged by Christ – Whose image we ought to conform

4) It will be based on our person actions and inactions – The things done in the body

5) The reason for the judgement – To be punished or rewarded according to our actions.

Beloved, how prepared are you for this soon coming judgement to reward or punish us?

Food for Thought: The rewards you will receive depend on the way you have lived now. Therefore make good use of your time, talent and treasure to the glory of God

Memory verse: 2 Corinthians 5: 10

Prayer: Help me O Lord, to be conscious of the coming judgement so I will live well so as to receive a good reward in Jesus name.

Have The Mindset of Christ

MY DAILY COVENANT WITH GOD DEVOTIONAL

Devotion for Tuesday July 18, 2017

Topic: Have The Mindset of Christ

Text: Philippians 3:15 – 16

The word mature as used in our text was translated perfect in King James Version. It implies full grown, as opposed to babes or children. Full grown here is used for me and women who are grounded in the word of God (1 Corinthians 14:20 compare Hebrews 5:12 – 14).

The mature in this context means striving for perfection and not perfection. Our mindset determines our perspective of issues, the way we react and respond to issues. The mind factor here had to do with maturity; showing perfect love and manifesting itself in perfect humility through Christ.

Paul exhorts the full grown Christians to imitate His perseverance, urging them to forsake any claim to legal righteousness. He charged them to seek that righteousness which is through faith of Christ so as to know Christ; to win Christ and to press ever forward to obtain the prize. For us the present day Christians, the mindset Paul expects us to develop is having deep personal desire for a daily experience with God and the pursuit to be like Christ. It should be an experience that can give vitality and meaning to life.

To attain maturity expected of us in this Christian race, we should focus on knowing Christ the more (Philippians 3:8), having righteousness of Christ (Philippians 3:9) and desiring moral transformation which leads to encounter with the resurrection power (Philippians 3:10). This should be our concern as we race towards heaven.

Food for Thought: Christians must live like Christ or nothing else

Memory verse: Philippians 3:15

Prayer: Lord God, help me to have the mind of Christ which is love, obedience and humility

With God, No Favouritism

MY DAILY COVENANT WITH GOD DEVOTIONAL

Devotion for Sunday July 16, 2017

Topic: With God, No Favouritism

Text: Romans 11:16 – 21

God is no respecter of man. You may be His favourite today but if tomorrow you sin, He punishes you without looking at your face or blinking an eye. David’s case with Bathsheba and her husband, Uriah was a clear demonstration that God punishes even His favourite. Paul tells us that the reason why the Jews were broken off (Romans 11:20) was their unbelief. Again the only reason we (the Gentile) are still in place is because of our trust in God of the Jews. He thus warns us not to go the ways of the Jews God rejected or else He will not spare us. If God did not refrain from rejecting the Jews who became unbelievers assuredly He will not refrain from rejecting us in the same circumstance. Therefore, Paul advises us not to take God’s goodness and severity for granted (Romans 11:22 compare John 15:2; 1 Corinthians 15:2 and Hebrews 3:6, 14).

Beloved, with God there is no favouritism. God’s standard is the same whether you are a Jew or a Gentile, male or female, of black race or white, etc. As children of God, we should not be partial too. As Personnel Manager in your office, do you consider tribe, religion or relationship in offering employment to people? In the church, do you give your people certain position because they are your people? If we are called children of God, we must behave like God in all ramifications. God looks at the heart, no wonder He chose David instead of Eliab. Lastly, we should not think that as Christians today, we have made it to heaven. We should be mindful of what we do because any little slip or compromise can cause us our salvation. We must continue to take heed lest we fall off. God, help us to remain steadfast in Jesus name.

Food for Thought: It was possible that God could break off the Jews on the account of their unbelief. Certainly, He will not spare us if we follow suit.

Memory verse: Romans 11: 21

Prayer: Lord, grant me the grace to remain steadfast in faith and not to be partial in my dealing with people.