SCRIPTURE: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9 NIV)
Joshua was commanded to be strong and courageous. He was to draw his strength from the Lord God and was not to be dependent on his own muscular strength. Neither Joshua nor the people of Israel sought to conquer the promised land by means of their own courage and physical strength they would have failed– they were to place their trust in the Lord their God, Who had promised to be with them wherever they went. Joshua simply had to trust the Word of the Lord and act upon it. As believers, we are to know the truth of God’s Word and to meditate on the promises of God; to trust in the truth of God’s Word and to obey. God has promised to be with us in every difficulty we face and every problem that comes our way, just as He was with Joshua.
“For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires” – Hebrews 4 : 12 (NLT)
SCRIPTURE: “Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. “. (Romans 8:23 NIV)
Our bodies are useful to Jesus, but that doesn’t mean they only matter for this life. One of the most distinctive tenets of the Christian faith (and sadly, often overlooked) is that God has an eternal plan for our bodies. They are not just a temporary necessity for now, in the age to come we will not have “graduated” out of our physical lives into some floaty alternative. If the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Jesus Christ from the dead will also give life to our mortal bodies (Romans 8:11). We will be resurrected, these bodies-sin-worn and imperfect though they are -will be raised to a new and perfect life. The death of our bodies won’t be the end of it. Our footprints and fingerprints will be all over the new creation. The promise of resurrection for our bodies makes our use of them now all the more significant.
Source: culled from, Sam Allberry: What God Has To Say About Our Bodies
God has given us our body to do His work. A healthy body gives us the energy to do His work. As Christians taking care of our bodies is taking care of the place where the Holy Spirit dwells.
Beloved in the Lord, For the next one week, we’ll continue to talk about, WHY IT MATTERS WHAT WE DO WITH OUR BODIES!
Today’s focus is on, BODY & SOUL.
May the Holy Spirit minister deeply into our hearts, the message He has for us today. Enjoy!
SCRIPTURE: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship”.( Romans 12:1 NIV)
If we make the soul the focus of our spiritual life and downgrade the body, we can argue that the body is spiritually irrelevant. God (we might assume) is only interested in the spiritual side of us; the body is of no concern to Him. The mentality might be common in the church today, but it is profoundly unbiblical. We might think it doesn’t matter what we do with our bodies, but the bible repeatedly and powerfully shows us this is not the case. Through scripture we know that God values our bodies, and our bodies are said to be a temple of the Holy Spirit, and we are called to take care of and honor God’s temple. God’s words lead us to use our bodies and the gifts He has given us to achieve the will of God.
Source: culled from, Sam Allberry: What God Has To Say About Our Bodies
SCRIPTURE: But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by men and despised by the people. All who see me mock me; they hurl insults, shaking their heads. He trusts in the LORD; let the LORD rescue him. Let Him deliver him. Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you even at my mother’s breast. From birth I was cast upon you; from my mother’s womb, you have been my God. Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help.”
(Psalm 22:6-11 NIV)
Like Job before Him, David is scorned and mocked by those who watch him suffer. If the God he serves is so sovereign and powerful, where is this God now? When God doesn’t seem to show up when David needs Him most, does David conclude, as his faithless mockers do, that his trust has been in vain?
Or does he choose instead to affirm the evidence of God’s faithfulness to him over the long haul? David affirms here that God has always been in charge of his life-even before birth, even as a small child. His confidence is renewed:
If anyone can help him now, it can only be God. Who but our Maker has been with us during every moment of our existence, preserving us and planning our lives, even before we knew anything about Him (Psalm 139:15-16)?
Surely the God who has always been intimately present can be trusted to be faithful now and throughout eternity.
SCRIPTURE: “To Adam He said, Because you listen to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, You must not eat of it, cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.” (Gen. 3:17 NIV)
God disciplined Adam for his sin by cursing the ground. Because of this some people think that work is a curse but it is not. Most of us acknowledge that work can be burdensome. Think of the stresses, pressures, occupational hazards, workplace politics, endless routine, frustrations, disappointments, setbacks, injustice, deception and inordinate competition at the workplace. God, through the Bible, calls work and the fruits of our labour His gifts to us as we read in (Ecclesiastics 3:13 & 5:18-19). So work is not evil. God made some strong pronouncements related to work. Now let us consider some very important points that underscore the fact that even though God made those pronouncements, He did not in anyway make work a curse. 1. GOD HIMSELF IS A WORKER: God does not contradict Himself. He Himself was, and will ever be working, so it means that work is not evil. After all, God is so holy and so righteous that He cannot do evil. 2. GOD CREATED US IN HIS IMAGE AND MADE US HIS CO-WORKERS: In (Genesis 1:28) God commanded Adam and Eve to subdue the earth and have dominion over all creation. It is God who gives us the ability and authority to manage creation, therefore work cannot be a curse – it cannot be evil. 3. ESTABLISHED WORK BEFORE THE FALL: As our second point indicates, God gave us authority to work before Adam and Eve disobeyed Him. When God created them, He put them in the garden and asked them to tend and keep it – (Genesis 2:15).
SCRIPTURE TEXT: “Freely you have received, freely give.” —Matthew 10:8
God is the ultimate Giver. He is abundantly generous and exceedingly bountiful. He gives and gives again. His blessings can’t be counted, His abundance can’t be measured, His generosity can’t be contained. He has given you the blessings of earth and the blessings of Heaven.
Because you have received so much, you have so much that you can give. You can give a smile, because God has smiled upon you; you can give a hug, because God has embraced you; you can give acceptance, because God has accepted you; you can give hope, because God has given you eternal hope; you can give compassion, because God has given you comfort; you can give kindness, because God has given you love.
PRAYER: Dear Lord, I pray for a generous and a giving heart. Amen
SCRIPTURE TEXT: “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” – Acts 1:8
The gifts of the Holy Spirit are nowhere more relevant to our lives than in the area of witness. The Holy Spirit not only gives us the power to speak, but through His gifts of wisdom and discernment He shows us when and how to speak in any particular situation. We all live under the shadow of the great commission to go and make disciples of all nations, but we are not left to ourselves in this task. Jesus promised His first disciples that He would always be with them and He is always with us, giving us power and guidance through the Spirit whom He has sent, to enable us every day in our witness for Him.
The Holy Spirit leads men and women into areas of effective witness. He is always taking the initiative in opening the right doors where He has prepared the ground for the reception of the gospel – e.g. Acts 8:26-39. Life takes on a new dimension altogether when we are prepared every day to follow the leading of the Spirit on every occasion. The Holy Spirit will prepare the hearts and lives of those with whom we come into contact, so that they can receive the witness we give them to the power of Jesus.
Our whole life is an opportunity and if we will open ourselves to the possibilities of the Holy Spirit, we will be surprised at how many opportunities we will be given to share what our faith in Jesus means to us. This does not mean that we will always need to be straining to barge into people’s lives: it means that we need to follow the Lord as He opens the door by His Spirit.
Witness means many things. At one time it will mean making a clear statement about what we believe and why we believe it; on other occasions it will mean that we are the outlet for God in that situation, demonstrating His love and power through our attitudes and concern for other people. In any event, it is not a witness to ourselves, but to the loving power of the Lord Jesus Christ
PRAYER: Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to lead you in every situation.
SCRIPTURE TEXT: “If you love me, you will obey what I command. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever– the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”– John 14:15-18
The Holy Spirit continues to bring love and life to us. The harvest that began on the day of Pentecost, more than 2,000 years ago, continues today, and will continue until the end of the Church age. The Holy Spirit is the agent of Pentecost and the revelation of the love of God. God so loved us that He would not leave us as orphans but sent the Holy Spirit to be always present with us – John 14:18.
He is a Person and not a force or a thing as some believe. The Scriptures confirm this by the personal ways in which The Holy Spirit responds and the personal things He does. The Bible also makes it clear that the Holy Spirit is one with God the Father and God the Son – John 14:16. Since God is Love the Holy Spirit is also Love. This is seen in the attributes that are given to Him and which are without exception, the attributes of God. He is Eternal, Omnipresent, Omnipotent and Omniscient.
The Holy Spirit is love and out of love gives us spiritual life so that we can relate to God. God is Spirit and the only way to relate to Him is in spirit and in truth. The proof that we belong to God is seen in our love towards one another, for God is love.
The purpose of the presence of the Holy Spirit is to confirm God’s love and His acceptance of Christ’s perfect sacrifice. The presence of the Holy Spirit reveals and glorifies Jesus Christ and to fill us with His love. The Holy Spirit enables us to understand the revelations of Jesus’ perfect sacrifice. He reveals that Jesus’ sacrifice has made the blessings of God available to all of us. The Holy Spirit not only reveals and glorifies Jesus Christ but empowers us to love and to serve Him.
Prayer Point: “Pray that the Holy Spirit should empower you to live for Christ and serve Him.”
What is the connection between suffering and purity for the Christian? These are not terms we usually consider together, but Peter says those who suffer physically cease from sin and no longer live for human lusts. Instead, they live for the will of God. That is not to say we’ll reach a level of sinless perfection but, rather, the power of sin in our lives will be broken.
According to today’s passage, we are engaged in a battle, and Peter says to arm ourselves with the same attitude Christ had in His suffering. Just as He willingly submitted to the Father’s will and went to the cross, so we must accept that suffering is likewise part of God’s will for our life. It’s one of the ways He purifies us and breaks any attachment to our previous sinful desires.
As believers, we are called to live differently from the world around us. This doesn’t mean we’re to be deliberately antagonistic, but our lifestyle should be an example of purity. Others may find this offensive because it exposes their sin, and then they may respond by maligning us in an attempt to make themselves feel better.
Although we want the world to be attracted to Christ by our transformed lives, in reality we may make others uncomfortable or perhaps even antagonistic. This is why so many Christians around the world are being persecuted and even killed for their faith. But every time the church has faced persecution, it has also been purified and made stronger. God never intends for suffering to defeat us. Rather, His purpose is for it to make us holy and effective witnesses for Christ.
Bible in One Year: John 1-3
SOURCE: Culled from In Touch Ministries
Mixed Oratorio – from Creation, Joseph and His Brethren, Elijah and Messiah.
Date: 28th October, 2018
Venue: Accra International Conference Centre
Ticket Outlets: JoyFm, Silverbird Accra Mall, Koala Osu, Airport Shell, Community 8 and 11 Shell, Dansoman Shell, Baatsona Total, Salt and Light Ministries Office Abelemkpe
or call 0276389747, 0246826335.