Archive for the ‘Word of God’ Category
1 May the LORD answer you when you are in distress;
may the name of the God of Jacob protect you.
2 May he send you help from the sanctuary
and grant you support from Zion.
3 May he remember all your sacrifices
and accept your burnt offerings.
4 May he give you the desire of your heart
and make all your plans succeed.
5 May we shout for joy over your victory
and lift up our banners in the name of our God.
May the LORD grant all your requests.
6 Now this I know:
The LORD gives victory to his anointed.
He answers him from his heavenly sanctuary
with the victorious power of his right hand.
7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
8 They are brought to their knees and fall,
but we rise up and stand firm.
9 LORD, give victory to the king!
Answer us when we call!
Believe it and see the glory of God in your life; for there shall be a performance of His word.
Bible Quote: From New International Version.
Many things have been said and written about visions and there are a lot of things that can be said about visions from God. Vision is one of the ways that God communicates with us. This way of communication like many others has been so mystified that it brings trepidation to many Christians. I want to throw a bit of light on it to help someone gain more understanding about walking with God. Abraham, Isaiah, Ezekiel and many other people had visions from God.
“After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.” Gen.15:1. (NKJV)
“The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah” Isaiah 1:1. (NKJV)
“Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the River Chebar, that the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God.” Ezekiel 1:1 (NKJV)
Vision is about seeing. Vision in the spiritual realm is much like vision in the physical; it is the ability to see things but not with the physical eyes. Another way of helping you understand this is to liken it to a dream. In visions you have no control over the things that you see. You just see what is revealed to you. It is not something you struggle about and it is not about opening your “eyes wide enough” in other to see. In a vision from God, God allows you to see something he wants you to see. If you do “anything special” in other to see visions, then it is something to beware of.
“Now the angel who talked with me came back and wakened me, as a man who is wakened out of his sleep. And he said to me, “What do you see?” So I said, “I am looking, and there is a lampstand of solid gold with a bowl on top of it, and on the stand seven lamps with seven pipes to the seven lamps. Two olive trees are by it, one at the right of the bowl and the other at its left.” So I answered and spoke to the angel who talked with me, saying, “What are these, my lord?” Then the angel who talked with me answered and said to me, “Do you not know what these are?” And I said, “No, my lord.” So he answered and said to me: “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the LORD of hosts. ‘Who are you, O great mountain?
Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain! And he shall bring forth the capstone with shouts of “Grace, grace to it!”’” Zech. 4:1-7 (NKJV)
In the scripture above, Zechariah saw a vision from God. The angel actually asked him about what he saw, just to make sure he saw exactly the “pictures” before him. The ability to see is what is known as seeing vision. This vision is entirely different from the vision of having a plan, a perception, or insight about doing or following a certain course in life.
Vision from God is not the same thing as clairvoyance or divination as practised in some places. If God gives you a vision, he is mostly likely to give you the understanding of it. Visions from God to his children are not nightmares; though God may show a believer what he intends to do as a judgement to wicked people. God will most likely show you things that are unambiguous and you may not need further search for understanding. Searching for meaning to visions can be burdensome and subject to vagaries of interpretations; so in most cases, God doesn’t put that burden upon his children but this is not usually the case for none unbelievers.
The spirits of unbelievers are dead; that is, it is insensitive to God and their minds are clogged with many things that are anti-God and they cannot understand the voice of God in any way. So, the first thing God seeks with unbelievers is to bring them to conviction and repentance before any other thing; when unbelievers close this door, the door of judgement open upon them.
It is useless trying to force a vision. Many people attempt to do this to appear special or to manipulate others. It is falsehood and it is just like a blind person who attempts to describe something he cannot see or feel. The problem really is that many people allow themselves to be deceived by the ploys of people who manipulate spiritual things. For instance, does it take hitting ones head on the wall to see? If anyone does that, he may become fantasized and prone to demonic influences. The scriptures revealed this about some who called themselves prophets in Israel many years ago.
“And the LORD said to me, “The prophets prophesy lies in My name. I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false vision, divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart.” Jer. 14:14 (NKJV)
I know that sometimes, in believers’ meetings or services, someone can fall under the anointing and may not be conscious of his environment for some time and when he comes round, he might say he saw a vision. Such experiences are normal for as long as they are not attempts to manipulate other people.
Every vision is subject to biblical scrutiny and confirmation through the word of God, the Bible. Nothing should be accepted in isolation and if you are under undue pressure from another person to accept a “vision”, walk away from it. True visions have nothing sinister about them. The proof of visions is their fulfilments.
If you don’t see visions, you are no less a Christian; you are not superhuman if you do. God gives us various abilities according to his purpose. The most important thing is to be a child of God. God can speak to you and there are various ways he speaks to his children. I have had the privilege of being involved in some of them. The best attitude to these things is to see oneself as a messenger, “just like the mail man” whose job is to deliver mails to people’s houses. The joy of the job is in doing exactly what it demands.
We must not see ourselves as lords over God’s people because we have the gifts of God; doing so is much like taking the glory that belongs to God. Every gift must be exercised in love.
Visions are still part of the ways God speaks to us today and if you have this gift please exercise it in a godly way. You must not allow people to put you off it. Let Jesus be glorified in all you do.
Bible Quotes: http://www.biblegateway.com
Some years ago I had a friend who planned to marry. A lot of preparations were put into it and a good sum of money was spent. When the time came he informed me he was travelling to get married; I wished him well (I couldn’t go with him). For several weeks he did not come back; I was very worried but I could not contact him. One evening, I finally got to him, but he was very unhappy; he told me his story, the bride did not show up for the wedding; she backed-off at the last moment. (The family stopped her from going through with it.) They were almost there!
There was another man who nearly got there. He almost made it to heaven. The following scripture tells his story.
“Now as he thus made his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, “Paul, you are beside yourself! Much learning is driving you mad!”
But he said, “I am not mad, most noble Festus, but speak the words of truth and reason. For the king, before whom I also speak freely, knows these things; for I am convinced that none of these things escapes his attention, since this thing was not done in a corner. King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do believe.”
Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You almost persuade me to become a Christian.”
And Paul said, “I would to God that not only you, but also all who hear me today, might become both almost and altogether such as I am, except for these chains.” Acts 26:24-29 (NKJV)
During his trial, when the Jewish leaders accused Paul of insurrection, he was brought before Festus the governor and Agrippa the king and the above quote was an excerpt of that encounter.
Agrippa said to Paul “You almost persuaded me to become a Christian.” He never became one. It was like he got to the gate of heaven, to the throne of mercy and then turned back. He was almost there! It is unfortunate. What would Agrippa say when he finally gets to the judgement seat of Christ? What stopped him from going through with it?
If he wasn’t fit to make a sound judgement about eternal life, how was he able to govern people; making very serious decision like the one involving Paul, issues that could cost someone his life? Job 32:9 says, “Great men are not always wise: neither do the aged understand judgment.” (KJV)
He could also have considered what his friends would make of such a decision. Mark 8:38 says, “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” (KJV)
He was ultimately responsible for his actions. It doesn’t matter what other people think or say, we are responsible for our decisions. It is important to understand this so we can stand up for what is right.
Was it that his position made aligning with the Christian life difficult for him? If that is the case where is he now? We must not cling to things that don’t last to the detriment of things that have lasting and daring consequences. King Saul of Israel lost his dynasty because he preferred being a “man of the people” to obeying God. He lost the kingdom and lost the people.
You might have had or heard of experiences of “being almost there”. They can lead to unimaginable frustration, stress and even depression. Sometimes they could be things outside our control that caused them and in that case we couldn’t do anything about it. At other times we were solely responsible for what happened. People usually have difficulties recovering from incidents.
To avoid being caught up in very ugly situations like that, we must be very prayerful and watchful.
We must develop our characters, so that we can live for the highest ideals.
We must appreciate what friends and relations are, and what they are not and cannot be.
We must give time to study, so that we can have valuable information to help us at critical times of decision making.
It is important to know that when it comes to choosing between God and any other thing, God must have the pre-eminence. You might be at a crossroad about making a decision of eternal value, I urge you to choose God. Today is a good day to choose Christ. Do it.
The recent circumstances surrounding the missing plane MH370 and the unexplainable motive behind such evil raises further questions about evil. Why on earth would anybody do such a thing to passengers who were about their own businesses? What could have been the fate of the passengers on board the plane? If they are alive, what would be their state of mind and body? Our society is fully of many such evils and you get filled with sorrow every time you tune to a News channel on Radio or Television. In some News media, some horrible incidents are turning into “horror entertainments”, as a considerable time of News bulletins are used to feature trials of such incidents; some station broadcast special programmes on high profile “celebrities involved in crime”. (Their explanation is that the public wants it). Evil happens all over the world and cuts across all sections of the society. It is like the “world is mad with evils”. Science can’t explain the mystery of evil because it cannot be measured or calculated; it is usually unpredictable, and full of pain and sorrow. It is difficult to predict who will be doing evil or harm to someone soon. Nobody could have predicted that one of the 12 Apostles would betray Jesus for money.(Only Jesus himself did)
The available information on the mystery of evil is found in the Bible. The Bible says,
“And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.”
Jesus said in John 10:10 “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.”
The devil had taken it upon himself to wreck humanity and cause as much damage as he can. If you read the book of Job, you will get further insight about evil and the activities of the devil. He wants to prove that God is in the wrong and attempts to drag humanity into that belief and his way of doing it is through pain, loss, and deceit.
It is very unfortunate that people who are unsuspecting get involved in these horrible activities of the enemy. When evil happens, many people get drawn into it one way or the order.
What is the best attitude to things like that?
• We must be sensitive at all times how we handle incidents involving evil occurrence.
• We must empathise with those involved in every way possible
• We must do all we can to help, we must not come up with wrong conclusions and judgements (it is better to keep quiet than offer wrong perceptions of things, in words or actions).
• We must stay away from taking advantage of people in such situations.
• We should pray for those directly affected
In dealing with evil, we must continue to pray at all times.
Jesus taught his followers to pray; as we can read in the following scriptures.
“So He said to them, “When you pray, say:
“Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us day by day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,
For we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us.
And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.” (Luke 11:2-4)
I have highlighted the last bit to show that the Lord wants us to pray against temptations and evil. We are to pray against the activities of the evil one. It should be a constant prayer – do it every day. God can handle everything that we encounter. When we have prayed, we should believe God to help us.
Evil will not last for ever; God will bring evil to an end and the evil one will be judged. Evils are inspired by the devil, who finds it convenient to possess people and use them to accomplish evil work. Whether planned or spontaneous, evil is still the same thing. Evil is bad and has no justifications. Psalm 125: 1-3 says,
“Those who trust in the LORD
Are like Mount Zion,
Which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
So the LORD surrounds His people
From this time forth and forever.
For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
On the land allotted to the righteous,
Lest the righteous reach out their hands to iniquity.”
God bless you.
Bible quote: http://www.biblegateway.com
We cannot underestimate the power and influence that our negative past has over our present. It is very subtle how it creeps in from time to time. There are many people who have so much complication with their past that their present is a wreck. You must deal with that stronghold if you are to enjoy liberty, freedom, productivity and fulfilment. Many nations, people and individuals are still wallowing with the evil of the past; things that they can’t change and the pains they only play out in their imagination. Year after year nations commemorate catastrophes; re-awakening the hurts of the past to the demise of the present. The following scripture tells the story of people like that and the response that all of us should pay attention to.
“When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?” So they sent word to Joseph, saying, “Your father left these instructions before he died: ‘This is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.’ Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father.” When their message came to him, Joseph wept.
His brothers then came and threw themselves down before him. “We are your slaves,” they said.
But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.” Gen. 50:15-19 (NIV)
These were men that concealed their evil deed for several years. They were under a hideous oath not to divulge anything about what happened to Joseph. Now their past refused to go away even after Joseph showed them love. They were not convinced of his sincerity. That is exactly how many of us treat the love of God. Many people keep coming back to God to confess the same old sin over and over, without acknowledging that “God’s mercy endures for ever” They can’t accept that his love is everlasting. In this mood, they fail to enjoy the freedom that salvation brings.
The following scripture speaks about people who find it difficult to accept who we are now. There are many parents who still “babysit” their adult children. They “baby them” all about the places. They are others who cannot bear the site of our new level of life. They want us to still be “old fools” world without end. They see themselves as the “choiced, gifted, born-leaders, etc.” They are quick to play down other people’s achievements in very subtle ways. The Jews treated Jesus like that. The scripture says,
“Here he is, speaking publicly, and they are not saying a word to him. Have the authorities really concluded that he is the Messiah? But we know where this man is from; when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.” Then Jesus, still teaching in the temple courts, cried out, “Yes, you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own authority, but he who sent me is true. You do not know him,” John 7:26-28 (NIV)
Jesus resisted their backward and parochial mentality. Most times people paint the false humility picture of this evil. However, the question is, would Jesus have been considered “humble” if he accepted their perception of him. Would Jesus have fulfilled his ministry better if he accepted their view about his divinity? While I don’t support pride or arrogance in anyway, I must stress that being who you are irrespective of what other people think of you, is the best life you can ever live.
You cannot make a difference in your generation being someone else. You must discover yourself and live it out. Sometimes, your life might be carved out for a future generation and the present system or community viewpoint cannot understand a thing about you or pay for your worth. Many things we enjoy today sounded foolish to the first people who heard about it. For example, the Wright brothers announced they could fly and were called “foul”; who dares undermined their claim today? You can name others. Many great inventions that were foolish to many people who first heard about them are just all around you (Just look around you where you are now)
Many “school drop-outs” are doing great exploits in many areas of life but their former brilliant old teachers still wonder about “that dull boy” they had committed to “would amount to nothing” garbage bins. You must deliver yourself through the power of God from your negative past. It is time to move on. Forgive those who you need to forgive, leave behind you those that refused to forgive your past. Forgive yourself and move on.
God has made you new. Live it.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Cor. 5:17-21. (NIV)
There are a lot of argument about healing and miracles. Many of those arguments are appalling because they come from people who should know better (Christian religious leaders.) They argue that signs and wonders, healing and miracles don’t happen again. I have made up mine mind to distance myself from such circles because such discussions are unbeneficial and boring. However, it is nothing new as you will find in the following scripture.
“On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.
Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.”
The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”
When he said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing.” Luke 13:10-17.(NIV)
There are people who have the idea like “I don’t care if and when you are healed (or receive your miracle), for as long as it is not now. Some people consider talk about the Holy Spirit, miracles, healing, signs and wonders as “insanity” or misguided teaching.
My concern is about believers who need to enjoy the provision God made for their well-being. If you don’t believe in the supernatural, miracles, healing, sign and wonders, what are you in church for? If you don’t believe in God’s intervention in human affairs, what are you carrying the Bible for? A believer must come to terms with what the word of God teaches. God wants us to make heaven as well as enjoy his goodness on earth. There are a lot of pressures from the devil and many people need help. We can get help from God as we ask for it in prayers. We must persevere in hope for deliverance and victory over the powers of darkness.
The woman that Jesus healed was described as a “daughter of Abraham”. She must have been fervent in serving God but was content to live with her infirmity for life. The religious leaders of those days were not bothered about people’s problems. Like we read from the scripture, they ended up in embarrassment when Jesus exposed their errors. I believe in the power of God to intervene in human affairs. I have seen and experienced sign and wonders, miracles, deliverance, healing, etc.
Healing, miracles, sign and wonders are your portion. You can receive help now. Ask God for it; it won’t cost you anything; ask by faith. Do it now and never give up.
Praise The Lord
“Praise the LORD! Praise The LORD, O my soul!
I will praise the LORD, as long as I live;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation.
When his breath departs, he returns to the earth; on that day his plans perish.
Blessed is he whose help is the Lord God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord his God, who made the heaven and the earth,
the sea and all that is in them, who keeps faith forever;
who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry.”
You can praise God in your heart
You can praise God at work (in your mind)
You can praise God at home
You can praise God while driving
You can praise God in your fellowship group (church).
And if you are in UK,
You can join us on Sundays (10 am -12 noon)
At: Clifton Village Hall, Nottingham NG11 8EB
To praise the Lord;
You can adapt this post for your use in your group;
(Permission to use granted)
You can praise the Lord anywhere.
If anyone asks you why, you can always say, “Because I can”
N/B: This post is also published on http://www.gracefulvoice.com
It is very important to learn to hear from God and to be watchful always. If you are not sure of the “voice” and the “hand”, wait for God. Don’t allow the enemy to take advantage of you. Not now and not at any time.