| Another thing that God wants to do within us is to place His Holy Spirit within us. The Holy Spirit was sent to be with us when Jesus returned to heaven. He is still here today and still wants to touch our lives so that we will never be the same again. God has created the possibility, within us humans, to know the Holy Spirit living within us.
Corinthians 6:19 Haven’t you yet learned that your body is the home of the Holy Spirit God gave you, and that he lives within you?
1 John 2:27 But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you, in your hearts.
Romans 8:11 And if the Spirit of God, who raised up Jesus from the dead, lives in you, he will make your dying bodies live again after you die, by means of this same Holy Spirit living within you.
HE WANTS TO GIVE US HIS POWER
God wants us to know His power within us. We can say: ‘Welcome Holy Spirit, we are in your presence, fill us with your power and live inside of us’. God’s power can be in you and me.
Romans 15:13 I pray that God will help you overflow with hope in him through the Holy Spirit’s power within you.
God’s power is a mighty power that can be at work within us.
2 Corinthians 13:3 Christ is not weak in his dealings with you but is a mighty power within you.
May His power be alive within you!
And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.”
Come as you are to the Lord with your need, and lean on His unfailing and unconditional love for you. You don’t have to pretend to be more than what you are to receive the blessing you need from God. You don’t have to pretend to be someone else to appear more deserving to receive from God.
A Canaanite woman desperately seeking healing for her demon-possessed daughter came to Jesus. (Matthew 15:22–28) Knowing that He healed and did miracles among the Jews, she pretended to be a Jew, calling out, “O Lord, Son of David!” (Only the Jews addressed Jesus as the “Son of David”.) Jesus did not answer her. His silence made her drop her pretense and cry out, “Lord, help me!”
Only when her pretenses had melted away did she see the grace of God extended to her. Jesus made a way for her to receive her miracle even though it was not yet time for the Gentiles to receive His blessings. He told her, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.”
Many people might be offended at being called a “dog”. Actually, the Greek word used here by Jesus means “puppy”, and is thus an affectionate rather than offensive term. So this woman was not offended. In fact, she knew then that she could receive healing for her daughter because even puppies get to eat what falls from their masters’ table.
She saw that the crumbs under the Master’s table were enough for a Gentile, a “little dog”, like herself. You must understand that the Jews then considered Gentiles dogs. But what Jesus was trying to say was that He was called to the Jews first, not the Gentiles. Yet, He loved this Gentile woman and her daughter enough to provide a “loophole” for them to receive their miracle.
So when the Canaanite woman took her place by dropping the title “Son of David” and just leaned on Jesus’ compassion for her, her daughter was healed from that very hour.
If God was willing to extend His grace to a Gentile, how much more you, His beloved child! You do not need to depend on pretensions to receive a miracle from Him. Come as you are and lean on His grace. If He has delivered Jesus up for us, “how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things”? (Romans 8:32)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:17)
When you learn to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and your Lord, you become then and there a new creation. You are reborn with a new spirit and are given the chance to walk a new life.
Sure, there may be countless hold habits that you may have carried over to your new self, but with enough discipline anything is possible.
Remember that the Lord shall lead you to new opportunities, open new doors for you, and guide you to create new relationships.
In turn, when you embrace Jesus Christ, you let go of the old and welcome in the new.
Do not let anything discourage you. If anything, be encouraged because you are bound to receive the Lord’s favor no matter what.
Give yourself a chance at a new beginning because you of all people know you deserve it, and the Lord knows it as well.
He is only biding His time for the right moment to unleash His blessings upon you.
Embrace a new faith that accepts Jesus Christ and you shall be rewarded abundantly at a time when you most deserve it.
The children of Israel experienced God’s help while He brought them out of slavery in Egypt and brought them to himself in the wilderness. The wilderness is a place of solitude, a place without all comforts that we find at home, in the wilderness you are put in a position to rely upon God for survival. God opened the red sea for them to pass, He provided food and water for them on the journey, yet they kept on complaining. During their journey in the wilderness, instead of drawing closer to God in humble reliance they failed to realize God’s mercy and love on their deliverance. They thought that they deserve the best. Leading the children of Israel was not an easy task.
Lessons that we need to learn against ignoring God’s grace
- Impatience about God’s promises v/1-5 V/1 “now when the people saw that Moses was delayed coming down from the mountain, the people gathered together to Aaron and said to him, come make us gods that shall go before us, for as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt we do not know what has become of him”.
God has done so much for the children of Israel, but their heart was far away from God. It is so amazing how people soon forget the hand that provided for them. There were so many things they have experienced in the wilderness. But they failed to wait for God. We always say; “God’s delay is not God’s denial”. How we handle God’s delays is a mark of our spiritual maturity. God’s delay should teach us perseverance. The problem with us as human is that, we suffer memory failure, especially coming to what God has done for us. This was a true reflection that all these years they never acknowledged who God is.They were so unthankful. They ignored the true God who delivered them and make their own god out of their golden ornaments and say, “this is the god that will go before us”. When we take matters into our own hands we always suffer negative results. Look example of Sarah by allowing Abraham to take Hagar for his wife(Genesis 16-21). This will give us an answer to the fights in the middle east. Have you ever seen when you are sick or having a diificult situation the kind of counsel that you receive that challenges you to bypass God’s promises? Psalm 1:1-6. Friends we need to learn the discipline of waiting.
- The episode of sin is described V/1 v/1(b) “come make us a gods that shall go before us, for as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him”. The reality is, they know that Moses has ascended the mountain to be with the God of creation. This people wanted to worship an idol. It is dangerous to do ministry according to what people want or what they feel they need rather than humbly submitting to the authority of God’s Word. Paul dealt with the same error in Galatians; “are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit (Galatians 3:1-6). They wanted a god who will finish what God have begun.
The respond of Aaron v/2-4“Aaron responded with compromise and without questioning their sinful motives. People were generous to giving to the idols. Aaron was not a true leader. People worship the golden calf as the god that brought them out of slavery. The very same respond of Aaron was the same respond of Adam to Eve. Remember Titus 2:11 “for the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, v/12 teaching us to say NO to ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously and godly in the present age”. It was not so with Aaron, he responded to the ungodly motive of the people. Looking at Aaron he was a man pleaser. He was characterized with compromise. Listen at Aaron’s proclamation v/5-6 V/5 Aaron made a proclamation and said, tomorrow is a feast to the Lord.” Referring to the idol that he made. v/6 “they rose early on the next day, offered burn offerings and brought peace offerings and the people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play”. Why people compromise? Because they fear to be rejected. When you are tempted to compromise, you must be aware of the three dangers of compromise. -Compromise robs God of His glory. Remember that God is a jealous God; He cannot share His glory with any one. This is the message that we must proclaim. -Compromise hinders a Christian to be fruitful and effective. -Compromise hinders people to be saved. You cannot follow a person who lives a double standard life. Remember that small compromise leads to big compromise. Don’t make deals with the devil. We shall never do any good to people if we fear them. You can overcome compromise by the following; -Know the God of the Bible. The understanding of God comforts us in times of fearful situations. That is why memorizing scripture is so important. -Be a person of prayer. Prayer is telling God that your dependency is from Him. -Be bold to share your Christian testimony. I counseled a person who told me that I am afraid to share the gospel to my mother, she said every time I try, she respond with hash threatening words. It takes integrity and boldness to share the gospel. The fear of the Lord dispels all fears. –Spent time with people of bold characters. That is why it is important to read books that have biographies. There are lot of books on women and men of the Bible. There are wonderful books by John Macarthur he wrote on twelve ordinary men and the other one he wrote on twelve ordinary women.
- God sees everything v/9-10 –God was grieved that they give glory to the wrong god. God told them in advance not to worship other gods (Exodus 20:1). Can you make anything to represent God? Nothing. –God knew that they are stiff-necked (stubborn) people. -God plan to destroy them. We must know that God is loving and He is also full of anger (Exodus 20:5-6). What is your idol? Surrender it to Jesus Christ and you will be forgiven.
- Moses prayer for the people – v/11-16
Moses pleaded with the Lord on the behalf of people. I always say that “as the pastor I am every member’s prayer partner”. We must emulate the character of Moses in this regard. Being able to bring other people before the Lord in prayer. Our prayer should include other people beyond our regular circle. This should be our attitude to pray for those who are not saved. We must see every person being savable. Plead to God about your unsaved friends, relatives, co-workers, neighbors and your employer. Looking at the life of Moses, he is known for being one of the most humble men of the Bible. He was also compassionate and a man of fervent prayer. If you are going to be used of God, you are going to give up your sinful behavior and began to identify yourself with Christian practices and convictions. We are going to humble ourselves so that God can get in touch with us and reveal himself to us like never before. We are too quick in making excuses as to why we can’t obey the Lord and do His will. God demand us to serve Him out of joy and willingness. Our life and our attitude should influence people to love God. We must develop heart like child, and destroy every compartment that we have created in our heart. I have observed three steps that leads to backsliding; -Failure to be accountable, -Ignoring God’s Word -Never thought that backsliding is possible.
- Moses anger to the people v/19-22 Moses was a godly leader, he knows how to be angry when things are not pleasing to the Lord.
- Wrong leadership v/23 Aaron proves to be a wrong leader, he responded by putting a blame to people.This is how many of us respond to our own situation. We blame others instead of accepting our own vulnerability to sin. Aaron failed to come clean before the Lord. What did he do in respond to the people’s request? He responded positively and gave them a way of doing the idol. The people were unrestrained and Aaron failed to restrain them v/25. People of Israel were not happy customers. They needed a leader who knows how to say NO and YES. “Everyone did what was right in their eyes” (Judges 17:6). We need to differentiate wrong and right. Peer pressure should not push us to do what is wrong. We need to follow God’s way not our own.
The reason we gather here as a church family, we want God’s word to teach us restrain.
- Moses brought up a challenge/ 26 The true leader comes to the picture, “Who is on the Lord’s side, come to me! all the sons of Levi gathered themselves to Moses”. The children of Israel were stiff-necked, even when they were given an opportunity to repent they refused to do so.
- The obedient remnants were saved v/28
Moses confesses the sin of the people to the Lord v/30-32, did not minimize their sin. They did a great sin (Exodus 20: 1).
- God’s justice in punishing sin V/33-35 Moses as a prayerful leader tried to plead with the Lord again for the third time because of their sins, but God show him that He exercises justice. This is the fulfillment of His promise in Exodus 20:6-7).
Never underestimate God’s grace in your life. All of our life is the evidence of God’s grace. Your family, your children, your work, your health, everything we do and have, is about God’s Grace, “God’s unmerited favor”. As we face every day of our life we need to be conscious (aware, mindful, sensible) of this message. “NEVER IGNORE GOD’S GRACE IN YOUR LIFE”. NEVER!
Hymn and prayer.
4(Saul’s son Jonathan had a son named Mephibosheth, who was crippled as a child. He was five years old when Saul and Jonathan were killed at the battle of Jezreel. When news of the battle reached the capital, the child’s nurse grabbed him and fled. But she fell and dropped him as she was running, and he became crippled as a result.)
2 Samuel 4:4
Some of us are suffering because of other people who inflicted that suffering upon us. We are crying and regretting because of other people who found us happy and took away happiness from us. They found us rejoicing and they took away the joy from us. Those people who did that were not strangers, but very close friends, family members, trusted community leaders, our own doctors and nurses that we dedicated our entire lives in their hands with a hope that they are the right people for our survival.
Little did we know that we have trusted on wrong people!!!
- The nurse and Mephibosheth.
- The fast life that we are living today is creating very difficult situation for us for the future. Less percentage of parents are rising their children up. Most of our children are being raised by people we so much trust because we are so busy making money.
Mostly these last days, most of the nannies are from Lesotho, most of them with their different background. They are here indeed looking for greener pastures, some have children back home thus they are working for those kids. They know how to bring up kids since they have kids of their own. Some are single without any experience of brining children up, they are busy learning to do so with your children, we have time and again seen on media how kids are being abused by those that are looking after them, severely being beaten some were beaten to death. If you don’t believe me go to the police stations around South Africa, America and the UK and find out why those ladies are under arrest. The answer that you will be given is, they have abused children they were hired to take care of and some of them have even killed those kids.
They were born in a very good family these kids, with great expectations from their parents.
Some of these kids born came as a miracle from God and they needed a perfect upbringing since the parents requested them from God through much prayers, but the economic situation of South Africa, has tempted us to move away from taking care of these kids ourselves and we trusted an outside third party to take care of our little ones. This is exactly what happened with Mephibosheth.
- The nurse of Mephibosheth
- I fully agree and believe and concur that she was a trusted someone.
- Some of the things that happens to us and our children are not intentional, they are an accident. But any accident that happened caused by someone, it carries with it lot of regrets. One would say, if I was driving that car, maybe I might have avoided the accident, but since the vehicle was driven by someone else, it is not easy to accept what happened.
- Some in a home situation, if one party can be involved in a car accident, the husband would say, if I was there, this accident wouldn’t have happened. This is humanly speaking as we think that some are better than others.
- The nurse was hired to take care of the boy and not to abuse the boy, and that was exactly what this nurse vowed to do and was doing.
- The boy was relaxed since he knew the nurse being a very caring someone. He ate from her hands, he was washed by this nurse, he was woken up by this nurse, he was carried on the back by the nurse. The first voice the boy would hear was the voice of this nurse. The last voice that the boy would hear was the voice of this nurse.
- All these home chore, translated into a deeper trust and bond between the boy and the nurse. There was absolutely no sign of danger from the nurse care to the boy. All was well until the sad moment that befell this family when almost all the members of the family died in the battle.
- Your friend is a friend indeed and he has been caring so much to you.
- Your husband is indeed a loving person, but what happened to many wives and girls friends when bad times surfaced? Wives were gun down by the same loving husband. Girls lost their lives in the hands of these loving boyfriends.
- We definitely need a safe haven [place]
- Where every one of us will be assured of safety in the presence of any situation.
- The nurse never planned to destroy or to cripple this boy. It was not her intention at all, most unfortunately it happened in her hands.
- The boy was relaxed and the nurse was in fact trying to save the life of this boy when the terror struck.
- Churches are there to take care of our journey to heaven.
- Pastors are there to guide us on our way to heaven and not to abuse us and cripple us spiritually. How many fallen believers we are having because of pastors who are our spiritual nurses? Countless believers are hurting and some have completely lost hope in the saving power of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
- May we open our eyes and have a spirit of discernment and see things afar that can be a danger to our faith before it is too late.
- Would you please be a spiritual nurse of yourself and avoid to blame others for your downfall tomorrow. God has given you an excellent Spirit that cries within you Abba Father!!!!
- Would you please obey that Spirit and work according to that Spirit as to avoid any danger that want to cripple you as a child of God like Mephibosheth!!! Don’t allow yourself to be destroyed intentionally by others who appears as spiritual nurses to you.
- Be very careful and take responsibility upon yourself, heaven is for us all, stop listen to these false prophets who are telling you that your pastor is jealous because of the gift that is upon you.
- One false prophet was selling golden tickets to his congregation and the people at large for $500.00 to go to heaven claiming that Jesus gave him those tickets to sell to everyone who want to go to heaven. $500.00 is equivalent to almost R7000.00 to go to heaven. That is very cheap and I remain living in sin.
- Application in our lives and conclusion.
- Those people that are hurting you, you have allowed them to hurt you.
- It is high time to take care of yourself spiritually, live a life of prayer. Live a life of studying God’s Word, live a life of fellowshipping with other Christians. Fulfil the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus Christ by telling the people about the love of God that is found in Jesus Christ our Saviour.
- Stop playing be serious about the things of the house of the Lord.
- Choose right friends and those who will love you for what you are not for what you have.
- Stop playing Christianity, be a genuine Christian and start supporting the vision of your pastor.
- Stop listen to lies being spread by the agencies of the evil one which are dispatched to each and every Church of Christ. Their duties is to destabilize what God is doing in these churches. They have a mission, they were once genuine Christians just like the angels that were ones serving God in heaven.
- Lucifer which is the devil was a choir master in heaven, until pride was found in him in the book of Ezekiel.
- YOU WERE not born a cripple but someone crippled you, mentally, physically, spiritually, socially and emotionally.
- Your duty is to find out who crippled you and love him and come to Jesus he has all the power to restore.
- Mephibosheth was restored to a kingship position by David.
- A second chance was given to Mephibosheth to can come back and be served as much as he wanted.
- Mephibosheth just humbled himself and never blamed his ‘crippleness’ when opportunity availed itself.
- Stop blaming others, Jesus is coming and let us all go home and depart from this evil world that is full of lies and fake pastors, fake prophets, fake evangelists, fake gospels, fake marriages, fake brothers and fake sisters, fake everything.
Open your eyes and look to heaven, “looking unto Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith”
originally published on Pastor Vusimusi John Sigudla’s site
The world is an exhausted place. We search constantly for what should be most important or what deserves our attention from moment to moment. As the tides of societal values ebb and flow, so do our affections. We invest value and love into that which offers us nothing in return. And unfortunately the cares of this world have creeped into the people of God. Our gatherings are often marked by complexity and exhaustion. With program goals and achievements, we make complex what God intended to be so blessedly simple. We give our attention, energy, and love to that which isn’t always rooted in simply loving God.
When asked to highlight the most important commandment in all of Scripture, Jesus responded, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment” (Matthew 22:37-38). All of Christianity boils down to this one pursuit. And because we are to pursue loving God in all we do, all of life boils down to this single pursuit. Every single thing we do, whether it involves work, family, friends, church, entertainment, school, or solitude, is meant to be marked by the simplicity of loving God.
At the end of our days, the way we loved our heavenly Father will matter most. Our love for God matters more than any achievement, success, or program. It matters more than any possession, status, or relationship. And when we align our perspective with the first and greatest commandment, everything else comes into focus. When we pursue loving God above all else, all other pursuits fall into their proper places.
We were not created to offer our affections to anyone or anything but God first and foremost. To do otherwise is simply idolatry, and it will ruin the heavenly peace and simplicity God intends for his children. We create our own golden calves and ask them to satisfy us in ways only God can. We look to the world to offer us love it never had to begin with. But your heavenly Father is a wellspring of love and affection for you.
The commonly quoted verse John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” You will never be satisfied until you rest in the powerfully simple truth of Scripture that God has loved you and will always love you. And you will never experience the fullness of what Christ died to give you until you respond to his ceaseless love by crowning him Lord and loving him with every fibre of your being.
May you come to realize the beauty and fulfillment of a life lived in pursuit of God above all else as you spend time in prayer.
1. Meditate on the first and greatest commandment. Allow Scripture to be your foundation for truth and life.
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment.” Matthew 22:37-38
2. Reflect on your own life. What pursuits have become more important than loving God? What are you giving energy and affection to above relationship with your heavenly Father? What areas of your life are not being done as worship?
“Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” John 17:24-26
3. Confess your pursuits and receive God’s loving forgiveness. Crown him as Lord of your heart and life, and ask him to help you respond to his love with your own. Ask the Spirit to help you do all that is set before you as worship to your King. Take time to give him your affections now. Worship him. Thank him. Love him. Offer him the deepest places of your heart.
“So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.” 1 John 4:16
You were created for worship. And until all that you do is done as worship to God, you will not experience the fullness of peace, joy, and purpose available to you through Christ. Rest, fun, work, friends, family, and church are all to be filled with the joy of loving God and being loved by him. He is the God of fun, parties, rest, and love. He has the absolute most abundant and joyful life in store for you if you will simply love him first and foremost. May you experience deeper relationship with your heavenly Father today and love him as he has loved you.
But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. 2 Peter 3:18
The verse speaks of what Christians should do while waiting for the return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. According to the context of this verse, there are those who question the credibility of Christ’s promise to return. This had greatly disturbed the believers. So Apostle Peter reminded them that a thousand years is only a day with the Lord and that the Lord is faithful in what He had promised. Then He reminded them that as they wait for His coming, they should live their lives in holiness and godliness, and grow in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As we wait for that glorious moment which God will decide, it is our responsibility as Christians to grow and to live a life pleasing to Him until He comes again.