Extravagant Grace


Devotion for Wednesday January 17, 2018

Topic: Extravagant Grace 

Text: John 8:1 – 11                                             

When Jesus called on someone without sin to throw the first stone on this woman caught in the very act, the leaders slipped away one by one, from oldest to youngest. As Life Application Commentary noted, “Evidently the older men were more aware of their sins than the younger. Age and experience often temper youthful self-righteousness.”

Every human being has a sinful nature and is desperately in need of forgiveness and transformation. If we are invited today to throw a stone on that woman, I know we wouldn’t have thrown the first stone because we cannot claim that we have not sinned. We would have also walked away.

Actually no one could claim he or she is sinless so as to throw a stone this woman. Jesus had exposed their hypocrisy and embarrassed them. They went back in shame to think of some other ways to trap Jesus. No one had accused the woman, and Jesus kindly said that He would not condemn her either. Thus she was released through extravagant grace God shows sinners.

Jesus secured her freedom from the Pharisees and to free her from her sins said, “Go and sin no more.” Jesus didn’t condemn her, but neither did he ignore or condone her behaviour. Jesus told the woman to leave her life of sin.

As we have been graciously brought to this new day, we should not abuse the grace of God. He expects to see righteousness in us. Don’t think you deserve to be alive; it is by God’s grace. Live in gratitude like this woman having received God’s grace. Sing A&M 352; SS&S 581; Abu 195

Food for Thought: How grateful are you to God for the grace He showers on you?

Memory verse: John 8:11

Prayer: Lord, I am alive by your grace. Help me to live my life in gratitude for this singular honour in Jesus name. Amen.

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Best Ways To Bear Worthy Fruits

Devotion for Wednesday January 3, 2018

Topic: Best Ways To Bear Worthy Fruits

Text: Luke 3:10 – 14

The question the people of Jerusalem, all Judea, and the entire region around the Jordan asked John is what all meaningful Christians should ask God at the beginning of the year like this which is “what shall we do then?” The question they asked John is similar to what we have in Acts 2:37. John had to enumerate some of the areas people of diverse professions commit sin against God and humanity. He mentioned acts of charity (Kindness to the needy), honesty and sincerity among tax collectors in collecting taxes. He also charged soldiers to stop intimidating people or accusing them falsely, and to be contented with their wages. A closer look at John’s answers in Luke 3:11 – 14 gives a clear picture of our present day society. Can you do a comparison with your society? Some people have decided to be doing these and many other crimes despite the word of God they preach and hear. Their reasons are that a labourer deserves his wages and their salaries have not been paid. Beloved, you have no excuse to extort money from people or falsify scales to make gains. These are attributes of unbelievers. It should not be seen or heard among believers. If you had been in it, repent today. God expects us to bear good fruits for Him. We can only do it through righteousness and not through deceit if we hope to benefit from His blessings for us. Sing A&M 361; Abu 128

Food for Thought: One of the first demands of religion is to be good and it is the best way to show that our repentance is not feigned.

Memory verse: 1 John 3:17

Prayer: Lord God, grant that I will bear fruits worthy of my repentance in Jesus name. Amen

 

Bear Worthy Fruits

Devotion for Tuesday January 2, 2018

Topic: Bear worthy fruits

Text: Luke 3:7 – 9

John the Baptist in his preaching called the people to repentance and also admonished them to bear fruit worthy of repentance. John stated that the time has come when Abraham’s seed shall no longer be reckoned by outward descent, but by character. Therefore, they should change their character and ways of living to conform to what they profess that implies having the character and doing the works of Abraham. What John the Baptist meant is that there should be a change of character that should led to a change of situation. Many people have kept doing same thing over and again expecting different results that can never be. You cannot hold on to one methodology of doing something and expect to get good results. What are the ways you have been serving God, doing your business or relating with people that has not yielded the desired fruit? You need to change your method. On the other hand, we should show the reality of our repentance by forsaking our sins and obeying the commands of God. In order that repentance may be shown to be sincere, it must produce good works. This is one way we can get God’s approval and blessings. Don’t hope to get God’s approval when you are still living in sin. Sing A&M 325; Abu 157

Food for Thought: The change of life is the proof of the change of heart.

Memory verse: Matthew 3:8

Prayer: Almighty God, grant me a change of heart and life that will reflect the confession I make as a Christian in Jesus name. Amen.

Prepare For Your 2018

Devotion for Monday January 1, 2018

Topic: Prepare For Your 2018

Text: Luke 3:1 – 6

Welcome to the year 2018. Do you know that most people usually start their year unprepared? For this reason our devotions for the first two weeks are on what we can do to have a rewarding year. In our bible reading, John the Baptist as the forerunner of Jesus Christ called on the people of Judea to prepare the way for the Lord to manifest Himself for them. This implies that people who are expecting the Messiah should do something so that the Messiah will fulfill His promises. They were expected to remove every hindrance to His manifestation.

At the beginning of the year like this, we should take a stock of how we lived in the previous year, observing where we failed and where we did well. Those areas we didn’t do well should be worked on. Again, there are things that hinder the manifestation of Christ in our lives and families. We might have indulged in one sin or another thus distorting our relationship with God. We should amend our ways and live rightly so that our relationship with God will be smooth.

What are those valleys to be filled and those mountains and hills that we ought to bring low; the crooked places to be made straight and the rough ways to be made smooth so that we can see the salvation, deliverance and blessings of God in our lives this year? Think about them as you Sing SS&S 363.

Food for Thought: What do you think will hinder the manifestation of God’s salvations and blessings in your life this year?

Memory verse: Isaiah 40:3

Prayer: God, grant me the grace to prepare my heart for you to dwell in this year and always in Jesus name.

Our Righteousness Guards Us

Devotion for Friday November 24, 2017

Topic: Our Righteousness Guards Us

Text: Proverbs 13:6

There is no virtue without reward and there is no vice without punishment. Anything we do has its recompense whether good or bad. Righteousness is a sure guide as it helped Joseph in times of trials. It leads the soul unto blessedness but sin flatters men only to reward them with disappointment and ruin. There are two facts to note in our bible passage for the day.

1) God secures people who are righteous from ruin. Those who are righteous in their ways, honest in all their actions, adhering faithfully to the sacred rules of equity, and deal sincerely both with God and man, will be kept from the temptations of Satan by their integrity. Temptations shall not prevail over them neither will the reproaches of evil men, come upon them, to do them any real mischief (Psalm 25:21). Are you in this group who are living righteous and blameless life before God and man?

2) Sinners secure for themselves ruin. Those that are wicked, even their wickedness will overthrow them at last, as they are held in the cords of their wickedness in the meantime. They will be corrected and destroyed by their own wickedness. They shall bear the consequences of their wickedness (Proverbs 11:3, 5 – 6).

Piety benefits while sin injures. Are you living the life of evil and wickedness, dubious in your character? Repent now! There are consequences ahead of such life. It may seem good to you now but the end is what counts. It is better to avoid evil now than suffer the consequences later.

Food for Thought: Will the life you are living now secure you against evil?

Memory verse: Proverbs 13:6

Prayer: Help me O Lord my God, to live a righteous and blameless life that will secure me against ruin and evil in Jesus name.

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

Request Sinners Often Make

Devotion for Monday September 11, 2017

Topic: Request Sinners Often Make

Text: Exodus 8:25 – 32

Unbelievers use these words often and again, “Pray for me.” Most times, they say it casually but it shows two basic truths. First and foremost, it shows that they know that the life they are living is not according to the will of God and needed mercy. Again, it shows that they have acknowledged that you are a child of God who can intercede on their behalf. King Jeroboam’s hand withered when he ordered the arrest of a man of God. Thereafter he said, “Please entreat the favour of the Lord your God and pray for me that my hand maybe restored to me” – 1 Kings 13:6b. The man of God did as requested and his hand was restored (1 Kings 13:6c).

Pharaoh hardened his heart by refusing to allow the Israelites to go and God dealt with him and his people. When he saw the outstretched arm of God, he asked Moses to intercede for him. This was similar to the case of Simon Magus, who, like Pharaoh, fearing the divine Judgement, begged for Peter’s prayers (Acts 8:24). Why will people deliberately sin and thereafter ask for prayers? If they actually know that what they are doing is evil, why do it? Can you give some reasons why people act that way?

Do you deliberately commit fornication, steal tell lies, etc., and thereafter you begin to ask for prayers or begin to pray? Repent now because the judgement of God is at hand. Don’t think that the grace of God is eternity. Remember how Pharaoh eventually died with his men inside the Red Sea. Therefore be warned.

Food for Thought: The knowledge of Divine Judgement coming upon all unrighteousness should make us live in awe of God.

Memory verse: Exodus 8:28

Prayer: God, grant me the grace to l need so that I will not deliberately sin against you.