Word For Daily Victory

Posts tagged ‘Bible’

When Wickedness and Evil Increases – The End is Near!

Sometimes we are challenged by increase of wickedness and oppression. We get caught up in situations that are awful and seemingly insurmountable; many people despair for life and mourn at such times. These situations come in various forms and I am not going to single out some of them here. At such times the wicked and oppressors feel on top of the world, brandishing venom, hatred and are eager to show how much evil influence they can wield. It is not new.

The scripture says in Daniel 3:19-27 “Then Nebuchadnezzar was full of fury, and the expression on his face changed toward Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. He spoke and commanded that they heat the furnace seven times more than it was usually heated. And he commanded certain mighty men of valor who were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, and cast them into the burning fiery furnace. Then these men were bound in their coats, their trousers, their turbans, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Therefore, because the king’s command was urgent, and the furnace exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.” Then Nebuchadnezzar went near the mouth of the burning fiery furnace and spoke, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here.” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego came from the midst of the fire. And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.”

King Nebuchadnezzar was very angry at the thought of the defiance of his order about removing freedom of worship. He commanded increase of punishment to the three Hebrew children. The king deployed his mighty men of valour to deal with harmless and unarmed men; while the public watched with excitement at the humiliation that these men would soon be put into. The atmosphere must have been tensed and charged with dreadful fright. It was a time no person wished to be an Israelite. It had been escalated to a fight of the gods against men, king against the commoners and king Nebuchadnezzar against God.

The scripture says in I Sam. 17:42-47, “And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was only a youth, ruddy and good-looking. So the Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands.”

The above scripture was another occasion that wickedness and oppression increased against the army of Israel, who were ill-equipped to fight the Philistines and their champion, Goliath of Gath. It was a spectacle watching an untrained boy going against the odds. Neither his people nor the enemy gave him a chance. The only thing he had was his sling and the only person he counted on for support was God. Once again it was the battle of the God of Israel against the gods of the Philistines. It was like David embarked on a suicide mission. You can only imagine the vexation of Goliath and he was determine to deal with this insult and afterwards deal with those who sent him.

Evils don’t last for ever, no matter how long it takes. All over the world wickedness is being multiplied and ruthlessness is just the heading of the next News bulletin, on radio and television. The Newspapers are painted all over with pictures of violence and crime.

When evil and wickedness increases their end is at hand.

Instead of the three Hebrew children suffering agonising shame and humiliation, King Nebuchadnezzar did. Instead of David reeling in pain and blood, Goliath of Gath did. Instead of you suffering humiliating, defeat and shame, your enemies will. This pattern cannot fail for those who put their trust in God.

The scripture says in Isaiah 59:18-19 “According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence. So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him”

Whatever you might be going through, it might seem as if the odds are against you; your faith in God might be under fire and the power of those that hate you might be overwhelming and it might look like you have no chance or support of any kind; the Lord God Almighty is there for you. Those who trust him are never put to shame. It is human to feel agitated and bothered but keep believing, the wicked shall not rule over you; wickedness will surely be overthrown. The mighty men of Nebuchadnezzar were destroyed in his fire and the Philistines lost their champion in his plot; this pattern will not fail also.

Jesus faced the greatest vile the devil could muster, he faced the greatest humiliation the devil had at the cross; the enemy did not know the “game plan”, the blood for redemption was to be released in that fashion to account for everyone who will believe. When it was all over, the prince of wickedness found out the truth. He lost. He is still working wickedness but it won’t change the victory Jesus won. You have that victory available to you if you believe and keep believing.

Ref.

Bible Quote. http://www.biblegateway.com

Prayer and Faith in God

prayer and faith 1

Working for God – God use me!

Working for God

Working for God – God use me!

Hearing From God – Beware of the “Old Prophet”!

  1. A man of God from Judah had come to Bethel. When he arrived, Jeroboam was standing at the altar to offer a sacrifice. By a command of the Lord, this man condemned the altar. “Altar, altar! This is what the Lord says: There will be a son born in David’s family line. His name will be Josiah. Here on you Josiah will sacrifice the priests from the illegal worship sites who offer sacrifices on you. Human bones will be burned on you.”

That day the man of God also gave them a miraculous sign, saying, “This is the sign that the Lord will give you: You will see the altar torn apart. The ashes on it will be poured on the ground.”

When King Jeroboam heard the man of God condemning the altar in Bethel, he pointed to the man across the altar. “Arrest him,” he said. But the arm that he used to point to the man of God was paralyzed so that he couldn’t pull it back. The altar was torn apart, and the ashes from the altar were poured on the ground. This was the miraculous sign the man of God performed at the Lord’s command.

Then the king asked the man of God, “Please make an appeal to the Lord your God, and pray for me so that I can use my arm again.” So the man of God made an appeal to the Lord, and the king was able to use his arm again, as he had earlier.

The king told the man of God, “Come home with me; have something to eat and drink, and I will give you a gift.”

The man of God told the king, “Even if you gave me half of your palace, I would never go with you to eat or drink there. When the Lord spoke to me, he commanded me not to eat or drink or go back on the same road I took.” 10 So the man of God left on another road and didn’t go back on the road he had taken to Bethel.

11 An old prophet was living in Bethel. His sons told him everything the man of God did in Bethel that day and the exact words he had spoken to the king. When they told their father, 12 he said to them, “Which road did he take?” (His sons had seen which road the man of God from Judah had taken.) 13 The old prophet told his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” After they had saddled the donkey for him, he got on it.

14 He went after the man of God and found him sitting under an oak tree. The old prophet asked him, “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?”

“Yes,” he answered.

15 “Come home with me, and eat a meal,” the old prophet replied.

16 The man of God said, “I’m not allowed to go back with you. I’m not allowed to eat or drink with you. 17 When the Lord spoke to me, he told me not to eat or drink there or go back on the road I took to get there.”

18 The old prophet said, “I’m also a prophet, like you. An angel spoke the word of the Lord to me. He said, ‘Bring him home with you so that he may have something to eat and drink.’” (But the old prophet was lying.)

19 The man of God went back with him and ate and drank in his home. 20 When they were sitting at the table, the Lord spoke his word to the old prophet who had brought back the man of God. 21 The Lord also called to the man of God. He said, “This is what the Lord says: You rebelled against the words from the Lord’s mouth and didn’t obey the command that the Lord your God gave you. 22 You came back, ate, and drank at this place about which he told you, ‘Don’t eat or drink there.’ That is why your dead body will not be allowed to be placed in the tomb of your ancestors.”

23 After the old prophet had something to eat and drink, he saddled the donkey for the prophet whom he had brought back. 24 The man of God left. A lion found him as he traveled on the road and killed him. His dead body was thrown on the road. The donkey and the lion were standing by the body. 25 People who passed by saw the body lying on the road and the lion standing by the body. They talked about it in the city where the old prophet was living.

26 When the old prophet who had brought the man of God back from the road heard about it, he said, “It’s the man of God who rebelled against the words from the Lord’s mouth! The Lord gave him to the lion. It tore him to pieces and killed him as the word of the Lord had told him.”

27 Then the old prophet told his sons to saddle his donkey for him. So they did.

28 He found the body of the man thrown on the road. He also found the donkey and the lion standing beside it. The lion had not eaten the body, nor had it torn the donkey to pieces. 29 The old prophet picked up the body of the man of God, laid it on the donkey, and brought it back. He came to his own city to mourn for him and to bury him. 30 He laid the body of the man of God in his own tomb and mourned over the man, saying, “Oh no, my brother, my brother!” 31 After he had buried the man of God, he said to his sons, “When I die, bury me in the tomb where the man of God was buried. Lay my bones beside his bones. 32 The things that he announced by a command of the Lord against the altar in Bethel and all the illegal worship sites in the cities of Samaria will happen.” 1 Kings 13:1-32 (GW)

  • The old prophet seeks to be relevant. He wants to be part of every move of God. He “wants to show leadership” at whatever cost including propagation of lies and deceit.
  • The old prophet wants to bring every one “under his canopy”. You must be part of his “great call” or you are nothing. If you are not part of his caucus you are of “no significance”.
  • The old prophet, in the passage above, ruined the life of a young man and quenched his light.
  • You are responsible for the word God spoke to you. Seeking for approval of men and acceptance has been the demise of many people who carried great message and great anointing. Seeking for commendation of men can sometimes, destroy a person, so avoid it. Many messages and ministries have been compromised by attempts to draw people to join in the work.

Beware! There are still many old prophets in this age.

Ref: http://www.biblegateway.com

NB: This article is also published in http://www.gracefulvoice.com

Hearing From God – Beware of “Prophet Zedekiah”

  1. Now Jehoshaphat had great wealth and honor, and he allied himself with Ahab by marriage.

Some years later he went down to see Ahab in Samaria. Ahab slaughtered many sheep and cattle for him and the people with him and urged him to attack Ramoth Gilead. Ahab king of Israel asked Jehoshaphat king of Judah, “Will you go with me against Ramoth Gilead?”

Jehoshaphat replied, “I am as you are, and my people as your people; we will join you in the war.” But Jehoshaphat also said to the king of Israel, “First seek the counsel of the Lord.”

So the king of Israel brought together the prophets—four hundred men—and asked them, “Shall we go to war against Ramoth Gilead, or shall I not?”

“Go,” they answered, “for God will give it into the king’s hand.”

But Jehoshaphat asked, “Is there no longer a prophet of the Lord here whom we can inquire of?”

The king of Israel answered Jehoshaphat, “There is still one prophet through whom we can inquire of the Lord, but I hate him because he never prophesies anything good about me, but always bad. He is Micaiah son of Imlah.”

“The king should not say such a thing,” Jehoshaphat replied.

So the king of Israel called one of his officials and said, “Bring Micaiah son of Imlah at once.”

Dressed in their royal robes, the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah were sitting on their thrones at the threshing floor by the entrance of the gate of Samaria, with all the prophets prophesying before them.

10 Now Zedekiah son of Kenaanah had made iron horns, and he declared, “This is what the Lord says: ‘With these you will gore the Arameans until they are destroyed.’”

11 All the other prophets were prophesying the same thing. “Attack Ramoth Gilead and be victorious,” they said, “for the Lord will give it into the king’s hand.”

12 The messenger who had gone to summon Micaiah said to him, “Look, the other prophets without exception are predicting success for the king. Let your word agree with theirs, and speak favorably.”

13 But Micaiah said, “As surely as the Lord lives, I can tell him only what my God says.”

14 When he arrived, the king asked him, “Micaiah, shall we go to war against Ramoth Gilead, or shall I not?”

“Attack and be victorious,” he answered, “for they will be given into your hand.”

15 The king said to him, “How many times must I make you swear to tell me nothing but the truth in the name of the Lord?”

16 Then Micaiah answered, “I saw all Israel scattered on the hills like sheep without a shepherd, and the Lord said, ‘These people have no master. Let each one go home in peace.’”

17 The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “Didn’t I tell you that he never prophesies anything good about me, but only bad?”

18 Micaiah continued, “Therefore hear the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting on his throne with all the multitudes of heaven standing on his right and on his left.

19 And the Lord said, ‘Who will entice Ahab king of Israel into attacking Ramoth Gilead and going to his death there?’

“One suggested this, and another that. 20 Finally, a spirit came forward, stood before the Lord and said, ‘I will entice him.’

“‘By what means?’ the Lord asked.

21 “‘I will go and be a deceiving spirit in the mouths of all his prophets,’ he said.

“‘You will succeed in enticing him,’ said the Lord. ‘Go and do it.’

22 “So now the Lord has put a deceiving spirit in the mouths of these prophets of yours. The Lord has decreed disaster for you.”

23 Then Zedekiah son of Kenaanah went up and slapped Micaiah in the face. “Which way did the spirit from the Lord go when he went from me to speak to you?” he asked.

24 Micaiah replied, “You will find out on the day you go to hide in an inner room.”

25 The king of Israel then ordered, “Take Micaiah and send him back to Amon the ruler of the city and to Joash the king’s son,

26 and say, ‘This is what the king says: Put this fellow in prison and give him nothing but bread and water until I return safely.’”

27 Micaiah declared, “If you ever return safely, the Lord has not spoken through me.” Then he added, “Mark my words, all you people!” 2 Chron. 18:1-27 (GNB)

You have the right as a child of God to hear from God and to say so. There are many people who might think they have the prerogatives over other believers to hear God. God has the right to speak to any person he wishes to; denying God this right and denying other believers this privilege is out of place and a negation which has grievous consequences

“Prophet Zedekiah” will have none of that and can go all length to insist on his superiority. Beware of “prophet Zedekiahs” of this age.

NB: This Article is also published in http://www.gracefulvoice.com

Ref: http://www.biblegateway.com

Love – Delilah’s Way

Samson and Delilah (2009 film)

Samson and Delilah (2009 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Love is one thing that has been expressed in many ways; it has been described and interpreted in numerous ways both by saints and villains. Sometimes you hear of some instances of love like Romeo and Juliet and you are moved with emotions close to tears; at other times you hear love stories like that of Samson and Delilah  and you freeze with anxiety and fright. The question here is what kind of love is Delilah love for Samson?

“Afterward it happened that he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah. And the lords of the Philistines came up to her and said to her, “Entice him, and find out where his great strength lies, and by what means we may overpower him, that we may bind him to afflict him; and every one of us will give you eleven hundred pieces of silver.” Judges 16:4-5 (NKJV)

Samson fell into the category of men who could do anything for the women they “love”. In his first love attempt, the father of the lady tricked him and it end up in catastrophe.  His search for love continued and when he met Delilah, he devoted himself to be a good lover despite the apparent danger; however Delilah could not resist the love for money against the love for Samson.

Delilah plotted schemes for the Philistines to catch Samson. Thrice she failed to trap him and questioned Samson’s love. – Judges 16:15. (Great demonic deceit), I have always wondered why Samson was so daft that he could not see through Delilah evil plots; we must never toy with demonic schemes.

“So Delilah said to Samson, “Please tell me where your great strength lies, and with what you may be bound to afflict you.” And Samson said to her, “If they bind me with seven fresh bowstrings, not yet dried, then I shall become weak, and be like any other man.” So the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven fresh bowstrings, not yet dried, and she bound him with them.  Now men were lying in wait, staying with her in the room. And she said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” But he broke the bowstrings as a strand of yarn breaks when it touches fire. So the secret of his strength was not known. Then Delilah said to Samson, “Look, you have mocked me and told me lies. Now, please tell me what you may be bound with.” Judges 16:6-10 (NKJV)

How do you react to threats to your life? I have heard many stories of people who ignored danger signals until it is too late to do anything; they fail to deliver their lives from an avoidable danger. There are people who tolerated people who pointed guns at them several times. The “hunters” usually said it was just a joke until they became victims of horrible killers. People have ignored threats of knife crime until they lay still in the pool of their own blood.

“When Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying, “Come up once more, for he has told me all his heart.” So the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hand. Then she lulled him to sleep on her knees, and called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head. Then she began to torment him, and his strength left him. And she said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” So he awoke from his sleep, and said, “I will go out as before, at other times, and shake myself free!” But he did not know that the Lord had departed from him. Then the Philistines took him and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza. They bound him with bronze fetters, and he became a grinder in the prison. However, the hair of his head began to grow again after it had been shaven.” Judges 16:18-21 (NKJV)

A lot of people have been destroyed in domestic violence, office squabbles, and political intolerance etc, when they could have walked away. The Christian community is not speared of unholy plots against other fellows, for whatever reasons. Many believers have fallen victims of plots they apparently saw coming but ignored. It does not do anyone any good when the evil matures and results in horror. Why do they do it? Why do bullies thrive? Love? Do we need to raise Samson to marry Delilah?

I have heard “love” preachers who are as “blind” as Samson in his relationship with Delilah. Samson ignored the word of God in the first instance; various attempts to save him fell on deaf ears. “Flesh” ruled over him. He had a “love” preacher who destroyed his life. Sometimes people think they can love people more than God does (John 3:16). Today, a lot of people want to re-write the Bible in the name of love. There are demonic compromises that are destroying the church in the name of love; in many places people want to drag God into unrighteousness as if he is blind or has lost all his attributes. There are people who pray hard to “muscle” God into their mould of “anything-goes”; after all, prayers can do anything.

Samson lost his eyes, grinded at the mills as Philistine’s slave and died because he gave his love to an undeserving person. I was taught that when you make mistakes you seek to correct them. If you find yourself playing around threats to your life or well-being, keep off. If people have plotted against you (including “religious brethren”), if you kept quiet at the first attempt and then survive the second one, if you don’t do something about it, (at least tell God about it), you are at risk (High risk). If it happened to Samson, it may happen to you.

God loves you and wants all to go well with you. Commit you relationships to him; listen to him and handle things as he leads. God cannot mislead you. Don’t trust in the arm of the flesh and don’t allow the flesh to have dominion over you.

 

Scripture quotes are from http://www.biblegateway.com

 

I Won’t Be Denied!

John 10.10 says “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).” AMP.

I want you to imagine yourself as a hard working person, working under the most tasking, odious and humiliating conditions. You were willing to go through the most tedious experience of your life.

I imagine you did it to provide the essential things of life for your children and at the end of the period of your work you collected your pay and returned home to your family, happy that they will enjoy the fruit of your labour. You are a good parent.

I want you to imagine also taking one of your children to the supermarket to buy something he/she wanted. You gladly went to the counter to pay. Now you have paid for the item and packed it but suddenly someone comes by and collects the item you purchased for your child and starts walking away with it; what will you do? I don’t know what you would have done but I know what I will do. I will have shouted at the invader, I will ran after him and call the police if need be and I would have fought to recover the item.

Luke 18:1-8 “Also [Jesus] told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to turn coward (faint, lose heart, and give up). He said, In a certain city there was a judge who neither reverenced and feared God nor respected or considered man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, Protect and defend and give me justice against my adversary. And for a time he would not; but later he said to himself, Though I have neither reverence or fear for God nor respect or consideration for man, Yet because this widow continues to bother me, I will defend and protect and avenge her, lest she give meintolerable annoyance and wear me out by her continual coming or at the last she come and rail on me orassault me or strangle me. Then the Lord said, Listen to what the unjust judge says! And will not [our just] God defend and protect and avenge His elect (His chosen ones), who cry to Him day and night? Will He defer them and delay help on their behalf? I tell you, He will defend and protect and avenge them speedily. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find [persistence in] faith on the earth?” AMP

I learnt this lesson and made up my mind: “I won’t be denied”. Jesus paid a high price for my good. My salvation is included, John 3:16 says “God loved the world this way: He gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life.” GW; my health is included, I peter 2:24 says “who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.” NKJV;  my finances are included, 2 Cor.8:9 Say “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.” NKJV, and many more. I shall not be denied. It is important to me because the sufferings of Christ were not in a hidden place.

1 Peter 5:1 says “I appeal to your spiritual leaders.I make this appeal as a spiritual leader who also witnessed Christ’s sufferings and will share in the glory that will be revealed.” GW

Luke 24:15-20 says “While they were talking, Jesus approached them and began walking with them. Although they saw him, they didn’t recognize him. He asked them, “What are you discussing?” They stopped and looked very sad. One of them, Cleopas, replied, “Are you the only one in Jerusalem who doesn’t know what has happened recently?” “What happened?” he asked. They said to him, “We were discussing what happened to Jesus from Nazareth. He was a powerful prophet in what he did and said in the sight of God and all the people. Our chief priests and rulers had him condemned to death and crucified.” GW

I will not be denied. The devil, his demons and their agents cannot hold me back. God is with me I cannot be denied. Matthew 28:20b says ““And remember that I am always with you until the end of time.”” GW. God is committed to helping me possess my possessions, that is what Luke 18: 1-8 is talking about.

You need the knowledge of the word of God to actualise this. Study the Bible and get committed to what it says.

You must insist in prayers that you must have what God says you should have. The devil is not a gentleman, don’t treat him like one.

You must act and live by faith. God has made available to you all that is needed for a good life on earth. That is what John 10; 10b is talking about. Don’t be denied.

 

 

The “god Figures”

Jesus

Jesus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Bible clearly points out that God does not want us to make images of him in any form. Making images of gods is very common all over the world and that dates back to early human history. These images commonly called idols are worshiped by some and despised by others. People’s attitudes towards them have been judges variously all over history. For example:

“King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, sixty cubits high and six cubits wide, and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. He then summoned the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials to come to the dedication of the image he had set up. So the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials assembled for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up, and they stood before it.

Then the herald loudly proclaimed, “Nations and peoples of every language, this is what you are commanded to do: As soon as you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of music, you must fall down and worship the image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. Whoever does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.” Daniel 3:1-6 (NIV)

There are other images people hold of God; these are images of people, they include images of fathers, religious leaders (called by various names), political or national leaders and so on. God does not approve of these too. The scripture says:

“But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ” Matthew. 23:8-10 (KJV)

These figures have held many people in “mind captivity” all over the ages. People have related to God according to how they perceived or related to these “god figures”. For example, when we say God is our father, the image of an earthly father pops up. If people had a good “father – child” relationship, they are glad and happy with God as father; they recoil, if they had a harrowing experience with an earthly father; at that point they are bemuses about the idea that God can be a father.

There had been many religious leaders or leadership institution that people adore and honour. They represent God in people’s minds; they become images that people hold in highest esteem. People call them leaders, fathers, God sent, and many other names like that. These in many instances posed great dangers, given their human frailty; in many cases these “god figures” had succumbed to their human weakness and wrecked the faith of many people. Those occasions have driven many people away from God; in some cases some people who were established in faith had abandon their faith in God completely. The church history is chequered with a lot of these experiences and it has made evangelism difficult in many places.

There have been great leaders who came to leadership with great zeal and fervour. They had great accomplishments but failed to deliver in morals and were not accurate in judgement in some decisions; they failed the test of being “gods”. Their followers usually get discouraged and disappointed. The unfortunate thing  is that many people pass on this experience to God. They see God as inadequate and unable to deliver on his promises.

Men are not gods and there are no gods except the almighty God. Men who play god are in error and should stop; the glories derived from such efforts are false. Great men of God are still men and subject to the passions of men. People should wipe off the god images they hold of other people both physically and mentally. This will save them from error, pain and mental agony that accompany human failures that belittle people including the “god figures”.

God almighty through Jesus Christ has made himself available to all people. Those who seek him find him. The scripture says,

“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jer. 29:12-13 (NIV)

It is true that God has placed people along our part to help us in our relationship with him; we should appreciate and honour them but we are never allowed to see them as God. They are not.

 

Hearing from God – Prophesy

First page of the Gospel of Mark, by Sargis Pi...

First page of the Gospel of Mark, by Sargis Pitsak, a Medieval Armenian scribe and miniaturist (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hearing from God is very important in the life of every believer. Hearing from God is not a one-sided thing, it is not only a human desire; God wants to speak to his children. That means that it is something that is readily available to everyone who desires to hear God. All you need to do is position yourself rightly and you will enjoy this fellowship with God.

God speaks to us through prophesy. In prophesy God sends a message to you through someone else. This is a very common way that God used in the lives of the Israelites. It is commonly identifiable in the Bible.

“The Sovereign Lord never does anything without revealing his plan to his servants, the prophets. When a lion roars, who can keep from being afraid? When the Sovereign Lord speaks, who can keep from proclaiming his message The Sovereign Lord never does anything without revealing his plan to his servants, the prophets. When a lion roars, who can keep from being afraid? When the Sovereign Lord speaks, who can keep from proclaiming his message? Amos 3: 7-8 (GNT)

God appointed prophets whom he used to convey his purpose to his people. “The Lord spoke to Jeremiah in the thirteenth year that Josiah son of Amon was king of Judah, and he spoke to him again when Josiah’s son Jehoiakim was king. After that, the Lord spoke to him many times, until the eleventh year of the reign of Zedekiah son of Josiah. In the fifth month of that year the people of Jerusalem were taken into exile.” Jer. 1: 2-3 (GNT)

The proof of prophesy is that it must not mislead the people of God; it must not contradict the revealed “absolute truths” of the word of God, (for example, the fact that there is one God is an absolute truth, the sinfulness of man and the need for his salvation through Jesus Christ is an absolute truth.) All prophesies are proved by their fulfilment. All prophesies lead people to God.

Prophesy as a gift is different from the office of a prophet. Prophesy comes anytime God communicates in that manner. It can come from the prophet or someone God chooses to use. The prophet stands in the office to constantly point God’s people to the direction God wants them to follow. This does not mean the ability to see through people or the ability to always have something about the future to say to every person that comes around. Christian prophesies is not clairvoyance; these are different and far-apart as far as Christianity is concerned. In fact God forbids believers from associating with clairvoyance.

“Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft,  or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord; because of these same detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you.” Dt. 18:10-12 (NIV)

I know many people are drown towards seeking prophesies and prophets as an obsession; however, this means of God speaking to people is as normal as any other way God chooses to use to speak to you. Prophesy is one of the most abused Christian experiences and some people have used it to exploit others. It has been used to intimidate and scare people all over the ages against the will of God. False prophets are common everywhere and many of them are so crafty that it takes discernment and the help of the Holy Spirit to escape their antics.

God is interested in the lives of his people and is ever will to guide and help them.  The scripture says:

“Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture” Psalm 100:3 (NIV)

All who desire to hear from God must learn to worship and praise God. They must learn to pray and study the Bible. They must learn to wait on the Lord and be eager to obey him.

Hearing from God – Beware of these Voices

Hearing from God is a very vital part of the Christian life. Every child of God has access to the presence of God. God wants to speak to you. You may not necessarily hear God with your physical ears but his voice is clear to anyone who has learnt to listen to him. We shall look into ways the God speaks to us but today let us look at some of the voices that make it difficult for some of us to hear God.

One of the voices we hear every day is the voice of the human spirit. The voice of human spirit is a voice in us that we hear saying something to us about issues that cover virtually every aspect of our lives. Sometimes it picks up your physical voice – you catch yourself talking to yourself at this time. Most times it does not speak aloud. You are in constant conversation with yourself. It is more interested in things that are convenient for the flesh. It can fan your fears and trumpet your pride. It has the tendency to struggle with God. The following scriptural verses states,

“Those who live as their human nature tells them to, have their minds controlled by what human nature wants. Those who live as the Spirit tells them to, have their minds controlled by what the Spirit wants. To be controlled by human nature results in death; to be controlled by the Spirit results in life and peace.And so people become enemies of God when they are controlled by their human nature; for they do not obey God’s law, and in fact they cannot obey it.Those who obey their human nature cannot please God.” Rom. 8:5-8 (GNT)

There is also the voice of the devil. The Bible points us to various instances where the devil’s activities were let out of the dark. One of such instances is recorded in Gen. 3: 1-5 “Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?”  The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat;  but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’” The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (NASB)

The devil is out to discredit God always. You can always dictate this in everything the devil says, no matter how good the advice is. He has been around for a long time and comes with “wicked wisdom” mostly unsolicited for. He wrestles every word of God to pervert it.

There is the voice of the “wise”. Some of these people are partly agents of the enemy (most of them do not know it) and some are people who are full of the human spirit and a dominating spirit who feel they know more than other people but are self-opinionated. Some of them have become “opinion leaders”  It cuts across the boundary of all human life. I remember a Christian meeting I attended and in the midst of a discussion. Someone said something like “all this talk about studying Bible and talk of the Holy Spirit, is not it; come let us teach you” So what does he have to teach anybody about the Christian life more than the word of God and more than the Holy Spirit is able to. Who among us knows anything to tell anyone that will help them if God did not open our heart and theirs to learn, understand and apply the truth in their lives. The answer is – Nobody. Job’s friends were in this kind of error; Job called them miserable comforters. God eventually rebuked them. “It came about after the Lord had spoken these words to Job, that the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends, because you have not spoken of Me what is right as My servant Job has.” Job 42:7 (NASB)

We see another instance in the Bible of a voice like that in 2 Kings 7:1-2.  “Then Elisha said, “Listen to the word of the Lord; thus says the Lord, ‘ Tomorrow about this time ameasure of fine flour will be sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, in the gate of Samaria.’” The royal officer on whose hand the king was leaning answered the man of God and said, “Behold, if the Lord should make windows in heaven, could this thing be?” Then he said, “Behold, you will see it with your own eyes, but you will not eat of it.” (NASB)

These are just pointers to tell us that if we must hear God and walk according to his counsel we must be discerning and able to make a difference between what is right and what is not.

Stay blessed.

Reference:

All Bible quotes are from http://www.biblegateway.com

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