LOVE, THE GREATEST COMMANDMENT

SUGGESTED READING: 1 CORINTHIANS 13:13

SCRIPTURE TEXT: “Three things will last forever– faith, hope, and love– and the greatest of these is love.”

-1 Corinthians 13:13

Love is the beginning and the middle and the end– the first sign, stamp, and seal–of the saint. Stronger than death, deeper than hell, higher than Heaven, is this mighty, personal devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ. No one can ever destroy the individual whose heart is in personal, passionate devotion to Jesus.

Who for one moment has the least descried Him

Dimly or faintly, hidden and and afar,

Doth not despise all excellence beside Him,

Pleasures and powers that are not and that are

Aye and amid men bear Himself thereafter

Smit with a solemn and a sweet surprise,

Dumb to their scorn and turning on their laughter,

Only the dominance of earnest eyes.

Since my eyes were fixed on Jesus,

I’ve lost sight of all besides.

This is not sentiment; this is a fact. When will this knowledge of Him be full? Never! Eternal life is to know Christ eternally; not eternal existence, but eternal knowledge of God; deeper depths and grander heights forever! Beware of your own inward experiences unless they have this dominant note of fervent love for God.

Prayer Thought: “I love You, Lord, and I want to show the fruit of this passionate devotion toward others.” Amen.

STAY BLESSED

SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

Flesh and Blood

SUGGESTED READING: ROMANS 7:18 -25
SCRIPTURE TEXT: “To reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood ”
-Galatians 1:16

When God told Paul to do something for Him, the apostle did not consult with “flesh and blood.” In other words, he did not ask human opinion about God’s will for him. Do you?

Some people have told us, “well, I was ready to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit; but not now.” Why? Because they went to their minister and asked his opinion, even though he is not filled with the Spirit. There is no way he can give guidance in an area he doesn’t know anything about. Speak with God. Wait for Him. Take His way. Confer not with “flesh and blood.”

There are some dear people on a foreign field who have no business being there. They should be at home. The reason they went to the mission field is because they listened to the passionate appeal of human pleas. God did not send them. They consulted with “flesh and blood”

Listen to God, not to the selfish voice of “flesh and blood”

Prayer Thought: “Forgive me, Lord, for my tendency to let human voices crowd out the still, small voice of the Spirit of God” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

Self-satisfaction

SUGGESTED READING: ROMANS 7:18 -25

SCRIPTURE TEXT: “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death”
-Romans 7:24

Romans 7 is unique. The very best things said or written about it still leave this chapter unique.

Verse 24 of the seventh chapter of Romans is a heart-rendering cry from the depths of despair. It is difficult to think of this as exactly St. Paul’s own experience.

As a Christian, he seems above it; as a Pharisee, below it. Self-satisfaction was too engraved on his Pharisaic temper. The performance of the Pharisaic righteousness was too well within the compass of the average will, but St. Paul was not an ordinary Pharisee. He dealt too honestly with himself so that sooner or later the self-satisfaction, natural to the Pharisee, must give way, and his experience as a Christian would throw back a lurid light on those old days of which he was now ashamed.

The whole description is so vivid and so sincere, so evidently rung from the anguish of direct personal experience, that it is difficult to think of it as largely imagination. It is really not so much imaginary as imaginative. It is not a literal engraving of any stage of the apostle’s career, but a constructive picture drawn by him in bold lines from elements supplied to him by introspection….

The process described comes to different men in different times and in different degrees; to one early, to another later. In one man it would lead up quickly and suddenly; in another, the slow growth of years. We can lay down no rule.

Prayer Thought: “Lord, create within me a new heart, fully in unity with You and Your purposes ” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

Spiritual Conflicts

SUGGESTED READING: ROMANS 7:14 -17

SCRIPTURE TEXT: “….. With the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin”
-Romans 7:25

Lunacy, in the natural world, means that a person has alternating personalities. The most popular literary presentation of this type of behavior is Robert Louis Stevenson’s study “Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde.”

One of the greatest tragedies with regard to spiritual matters is this very thing. When the Holy Spirit first convicts a person’s conscience, and uncovers a personality that fights against the light of God, the consequence is spiritual conflict. It is this tragedy of tragedies to which Paul is alluding in Romans 7.

The ultimate outcome of this spiritual tragedy is either our sinking back into the old unity of the personality of sin, or being lifted up to a new unity of the personality of holiness. Man is what his “will” makes him, and sin’s seat of operation is in the human will. A person’s attitude toward God depends on the simplicity of a personal choice

Prayer Thought: “Father, unless You empower me to live victoriously, I will miserably fail You” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

‘ “DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE”. 

SUGGESTED READING: EPHESIANS 1:15 -23

SCRIPTURE TEXT: “The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of His calling, and what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints” – Ephesians 1:18

Saintliness is not built on admiration for Jesus Christ. It is not simply a reflected glory due to one’s nearness to our Blessed Lord. It is not refined sensitivity or a subtle religious genius. The stately beauty of a saint is not a reformed edition of carnality.

A saint is the work of our Master Workman, the Lord Jesus Christ. The saint i one who – on this good mother earth, amid the sordid and sacred days of time – has the glory of the Lord.

Saintliness is the product of Calvary and Pentecost where our Lord Jesus Christ dug our souls

From central gloom
And heated hot with burning fears,
And dipped in baths of hissing tears,
And battered by the shades of doom
To shape and use.

The saint is one who loves the Lord with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength and loves his neighbor as himself (Mark 12:30-31). Saints tread this earth with human feet while creation “groaneth and travaileth in pain,” waiting for full redemption (Romans 8:22).

If this life is so glorious now, what will it be when our Lord returns?

Prayer Thought: “Many times, Lord, I sense my need of more of You, so that I may better understand how to be a true saint of God.” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

“DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE”

SUGGESTED READING:

2 CORINTHIANS 4:14 -18
SCRIPTURE TEXT: “For our light affliction, which is but a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” – 2 Corinthians 4:17

The dominant trait of a true saint is a personal, passionate, and overwhelming devotion to our Lord Jesus Christ. Experiences of inward ecstasy are secondary. A saint wants to know Him.

In spite of disastrous circumstances, a saint yearns to know more of the providence of God. The apostle Paul was imprisoned, shipwrecked, starved, and stoned, yet we hear him speaking about “our light affliction, which is but for moment…….” (2 Corinthians 4: 17). He unhesitantly says, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation. or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us form the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”  (Romans 8: 35, 38-39)

It is not reward that a saint looks for ; it is to hear our Lord say, “Well done, good and faithful servant”

Prayer Thought: “Father, with Your help, I will be faithful to You” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

DOING GOD THE FATHER’S WILL

Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.  Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ – Matthew 7:21-23
Jesus emphatically taught that carrying out God’s purposes and desires was a condition for entering the kingdom of heaven. This certainly does not mean that we can earn spiritual salvation by our own efforts or works. This is true for the following reasons:
God’s forgiveness comes to us through faith and repentance (i.e., admitting to God and following His purposes). It is made possible by the grace and sacrificial death of Christ, who gave His perfect life to pay the ultimate penalty for our sins.
The obedience to God’s will demanded by Christ is an ongoing condition for salvation; it does not save us, but it is a response and result of true salvation. Yet, it is still God’s power and grace (i.e., undeserved favour, love and help) that enable us to live by His standards. This means that we must continually pray for that grace, receive it and put it into action by true faith and devotion to Christ. Note the Lord’s Prayer and the many challenges and warnings directed toward Christians, telling them to put sin to death (i.e., to rid their lives of sin and not respond to its appeal) and to present themselves to God as living sacrifices.
Because of the gift of gift of God’s power and grace, we are capable of doing God’s will and living right as we follow Christ with all of our heart. God’s Word says that “by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God…For we are God’s workmanship” – Ephesians 2:8-10.
God always gives us the strength and ability to obey Him and overcome sin. That is part of the full salvation He works out through those who have entrusted their lives to Him and have been restored to a personal relationship with Jesus. “For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose” – Philippians 2:13. Yet God’s gift of grace – His favour, help and mercy that we do not deserve – does not cancel the need for action on our part. We must respond positively to God’s gift of obedience. We are always free to reject God’s grace, refuse to depend on Christ and refuse to pray for and accept the life of obedience.
MANY WILL SAY…LORD, LORD
Jesus clearly states that there will be “many” who believe they are serving Him and who appear to do great works for Him, yet in reality they never had a true personal relationship with Christ. To escape the temptation and deceit that will be very common in the end times, church leaders (or any follower of Christ) must be totally committed to the truth revealed in God’s Word. We must consider outward “success” or results from ministry as the standard by which to determine our relationship with Christ. Each of us must strive to know Him deeply and to live by the instructions and guidelines in God’s Word.
I NEVER KNEW YOU
Christ makes it unmistakably clear that people may speak about Him and even be involved in powerful, supernatural activity, such as driving out demons and performing miracles, though in their hearts they have no genuine personal relationship with Christ.
Scripture teaches that what seems to be great preaching, strong belief, enthusiasm for God and the working of miracles can be performed even under the influence and power of Satan. Unlike us, Satan obviously has supernatural abilities and will use them to deceive people inside and outside the church. Paul warns that “Satan himself masquerades (walks about in disguise) as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, that many of his servants masquerades as servants of righteousness”. Paul makes it clear that what might appear to be a powerful gift of ministry can be “the work of Satan”.
Many times God overrides Satan’s activity in false preachers in order to bring genuine spiritual salvation or healing to those who truly respond to God’s Word. This means that if the message is true – even when the minister is not – it can still have the proper godly effect on people’s lives. It is always God’s desire that those who proclaim His message are in a right relationship with Him. Yet, when an evil or immoral person preaches God’s Word, God can still work in the heart of those who receive the Word and trust Christ. God does not give His approval on any unrighteous minister or teacher, but He does honour the truth of the message and will save all who accept it in faith.

Stay blessed!
Please continue to join us on Asempa 94.7 FM – Sundays 5.30 am., Sunny 88.7 FM – Tuesdays 5:30 am; and Uniiq 95.7 Fm – Saturdays 7:30 pm; for our Radio Bible Study as well as Sunny FM 88.7 FM every Sunday at 3:30 pm. for Hymn and their Stories.

 “DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE”. 

SUGGESTED READING: 1

THESSALONIANS 3:7 -13
SCRIPTURE TEXT: “To the end He may stablish your hearts unblamable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints” – Thessalonians 3:13

A true saint has received Christ Jesus our Lord. A saint’s conduct does not spring from adherence to external rules, but is the spontaneous outcome of an inward life of holiness and love. A true saint is free from condemnation (Rom 8:1), fully forgiven of sins (1 Cor 6:11, Eph 1:7), justified by God (Rom 3:24), sanctified wholly (Heb 13:12; 1 Thess 5:23; 1 Cor 1:30), a child of God (John 1:12; John 4:1-3), and possessor of all things (1 Cor 3:21-23).

Saintliness is not a divine anticipation; it can be a fact NOW. Oh, for more holy boldness to claim what is ours through the atonement of Jesus Christ our Lord!

Thou know He died not for Himself,
nor for Himself arose;
Millions of souls were in His heart, and
thee for one He chose.

Upon the palms of His pierced hands,
engraven was thy name
He for thy cleansing had prepared
His water and His flame.

Make sure thou with Him art risen: and now
with Him thou must go forth.
And  He will lend thy sick soul health
thy strivings might and worth.

Prayer Thought: “I am not worthy to be called a saint, Lord; but help me to be one in all my attitudes and actions.” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.


DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE

SUGGESTED READING: ROMANS 5:6-21

SCRIPTURE TEXT: “But God commandeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” – Romans 5:8

When a person is convicted of sin, he cries out, “Against Thee, and Thee only, have I sinned!” From the biblical point of view, sin is ignoring God’s claims and maintaining one’s right to oneself. Sin is sometimes esteemed among human beings, but it is an abomination in the sight of God.

Sin is not an abstraction; it is a terrible personal reality. Any person who has heard that Jesus Christ saves from sin, and continues in sin, is a damned soul already.

“The wages of sin is death.” But God postponed the penalty of death by allowing His only begotten Son to become the great victim for the whole world. “for God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16)

My sins, my sins, my Saviour,
Oh, sad on Thee they fall,
Seen through Thy tender patience,
I tenfold feel them all.

I know they are forgiven,
But, oh, their pain to me
Is all the grief and anguish
They laid, my Lord, on Thee

Prayer Thought: “I accept responsibility for my sins. O God, I need Your forgiveness.” Amen.

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DEVOTIONS FOR A DEEPER LIFE BY OSWALD CHAMBERS.

THREE WAYS GOD TESTS YOU THROUGH YOUR FINANCES

SCRIPTURE TEXT: “Trust in your money and down you go! Trust in God and flourish as a tree!” ”
– Proverbs 11:28 (TLB)

MESSAGE
God uses money to test you. He doesn’t just automatically give his blessings to anybody. He tests you first to see if you’re responsible. Before God gives you spiritual power, he gives you material possessions. If you’re not managing money well, then why in the world should he give you the stuff that really matters?

God’s favorite tool to test you is your finances, and he’s looking for three specific things.

Money shows what you love most. You’re going to give your most time and money to whatever you love most—and your calendar and bank statement will prove it. Jesus says, “Don’t store up treasures here on earth . . . Store your treasures in heaven . . . Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be” (Matthew 6:19-21 NLT). Wherever you want your heart to be, put your money there, and you’ll get interested in it.

Money shows what you trust most. It shows what you have faith in. Are you trusting in money or God for security? Are you trusting in money or God for your happiness? Proverbs 11:28 says, “Trust in your money and down you go! Trust in God and flourish as a tree!” (TLB).

Money shows if God can trust you. Unmanaged finances are a symptom of an unmanaged life. God is looking to see how well you manage material things before he gives you spiritual blessing. The Bible says, “If you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own?” (Luke 16:11-12 NIV).

There is a direct connection between maturity and money. There’s a direct connection between spiritual power and how you handle possessions. There is a direct connection between God’s blessing in your life and what you do with your bucks.
Don’t miss the connection. How you handle money determines how much God can bless your life.

Talk About It

What does your bank statement reveal that you love most?

Have you been asking God for more blessing in your life? How might your finances be affecting how much God is willing to entrust to you?

What are the “true riches” mentioned in Luke 16 that God entrusts to responsible stewards of his gifts?

STAY BLESSED
SOURCE: Culled from DAILY HOPE BY PASTOR RICK.