Jesus Is With Us Always

Before Jesus Christ ascended into heaven, He spoke the following words to His disciples;

All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 2818-20 )

In these words lie every bit of encouragement and motivation which every believer in Christ Jesus needs to be successful on earth like Jesus was. Jesus foresaw that the Church, His Body on earth would need all the encouragement in the world to carry on His work and legacy, so He declared, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age”.

Emmanuel, meaning, “God with us”. He is with us in 3 ways.

  1. He is with us in His name:

His name is Yeshua, God is salvation. He came to save us from our sins, to demonstrate the love of God the Father to a sin sick world. He came to dwell among us, even as it is written,

10 He was in the world, and the world was created through Him, yet the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and His own people did not receive Him. 12 Yet to all who received Him, He gave the power to become sons of God, to those who believed in His name, 13 who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 

14 The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, the glory as the only Son of the Father, full of grace and truth.”

He is not only with us in His name,

  • 2. He is with us in His Word. For He is the eternal Word of God, the living Word. As it is written,

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were created through Him, and without Him nothing was created that was created. In Him was life, and the life was the light of mankind. The light shines in darkness, but the darkness has not overcome it.”

Everything the living Word achieved during His earthly ministry the written word can achieve today. Because He is alive for evermore. Even as it is written,

12 For the word of God is alive, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 There is no creature that is not revealed in His sight, for all things are bare and exposed to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.”

He is the anointed Word, of whom it is written,

36 The word which He sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all, 37 the word, which you know, that was proclaimed throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee after the baptism which John preached: 38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.”

He is the sent Word, the Word that brings healing to the sick, deliverance to the oppressed, good news to the poor and liberty to the captives.

3. He is not only with us in His name and in His Word,

  • He is also with us by His Spirit. His Spirit, the Holy Spirit has come to dwell in us. He is the Promise of the Father celebrated down the Old Testament era in the feast of Pentecost, who was bestowed upon the Church in reality on the Day of Pentecost. He is the Spirit of the Son of God. For Jesus Himself said,

Nevertheless I tell you the truth: It is expedient for you that I go away. For if I do not go away, the Counselor will not come to you. But if I go, I will send Him to you. When He comes, He will … guide you into all truth. For He will not speak on His own authority. But He will speak whatever He hears, and He will tell you things that are to come. 14 He will glorify Me, for He will receive from Me and will declare it to you.” So, go on into this day knowing Jesus is with you always.

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God Is Not Mad At You

Have you ever heard this statement before? “God will punish you!” I am sure you have, and my guess is that someone has said this to you before for reasons known to them or on the other hand , you have said it to someone in the heat of anger. These words are commonly spoken by people to one another from time to time today. It is bad enough that a statement like “God will punish you!”  has become a part of our verbal outbursts towards one another is our society today, but worse still is the fact that this same notion of “Olorun afi iya je e” (meaning God will put you under suferring) is endorsed and taught by  “religion” today. This foul language is so entrenched in the very psyche and consciousness of people to the extent that many people have believed it. That indeed God punishes you for some very bad thing you have done, or He punishes you simply because someone said this to you. We actually believe this today. But I have good news for you today, it is the fact that God is not in the business of punishing people. God cannot be easily employed and deceived into becoming the whipping boy for every person who falls into a rash of emotional outburst with his neighbour.

I don’t know what you might have been taught in the past, but I want you to listen carefully today. You might have been told that God will make you sick, Or that God will make you poor, Or that God brings crises into people’s lives to teach them a lesson, Or that He will punish you for some terrible things you have done in the past, even though you have repented of them. You might even have heard that not only would He do these bad things to you, but He has the right to do them because He is God. All these are a bunch of lies, reject them and throw them out of the window of your life right now! If you’re  reading this now and you have been told that God is responsible for your sickness, and that He is the one responsible for the calamity that befalls every male child in your family, etc, etc. All these are lies, believe me, God is not your problem!

The Word of God says in Isaiah 54

With a little [anger] I hid My face from you for a moment;
But with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you,”
Says the Lord, your Redeemer.

… So have I sworn That I would not be angry with you, nor rebuke you.
10 For the mountains shall depart And the hills be removed,
But My kindness shall not depart from you, Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,” Says the Lord, who has mercy on you
.

You’re probably shocked by what I just read from that portion of scripture. Don’t be shocked, it’s the Word of God! Let this scripture, these words spoken by God, let it change your thinking. You need to change your thinking so that God can help you. What I’ve just read from Isaiah 54 is good news, Good News you need to allow to sink into your spirit to remove the wrong ideas you have believed for many years.

Everyone of us have done one thing or another in the past that was wrong. But if you have asked God to forgive you, then He has. He is no longer holding anything against you so move on. If you have not repented of your past sins, do it now, don’t postpone or delay because tomorrow may be too late.

If you have repented, God has forgiven you, so do not allow the past which God has forgiven to destroy the future which God has in store for you. Let me say it again, God is not “out to get you”, He has already “got” Jesus. God will not “punish you”, He has already “punished” Jesus and made Him to suffer for our sins [past, present and future]. Isaiah 5310 says, “Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief:”  God bruised Jesus so we might be made whole, God made Him sick with our sicknesses and by His stripes we were healed. (2 Peter 2:24)

The Bible says, in 2 Corinthians 521 For He [God] made Him [Jesus] who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

God says in Isaiah 54:10

10 For the mountains shall depart And the hills be removed, But My kindness shall not depart from you, Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,”
Says the Lord, who has mercy on you
.

Romans 51-2:

 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 

So, God is not mad at you, God is not out to get you and God is not out to punish you. He had made Jesus the sacrificial Lamb for us, So, Let this good news sink into you. Let it renew your mind.

God Cares, More Than You’ll Ever Know

Sometimes situations arise in our lives that seem bigger than we can handle. We all at a point or another in our lives, are suddenly confronted with a circumstance that throw us into an immediate state of fear and anxiety because what we face at that moment is uniquely peculiar and bigger than anything we have ever handled or anticipated. What majority of people like you and I do is “freak out” or just become confused, not knowing the next step to take. But we need to realize that at such times, God sees, God knows and God cares, so much so that He has the solution to the problem we may be facing, no matter how bad.

During the life and ministry of Jesus Christ, on a particular occasion, He asked His twelve disciples to get into their boat and head across the lake of Galilee to Bethsaida, while He dismissed the multitudes who had come to see and hear Him, after feeding them miraculously by multiplying five loaves of bread and two pieces of fish. When they had departed,  He went up the hills by himself to pray.

Late that night, the disciples were in their boat in the middle of the lake while Jesus was alone on land. As He was praying, He saw that His disciples were in serious trouble, rowing hard and struggling against the wind and waves. This was in the dead of the night. This situation must have continued for a while, but about 3 o’clock  in the morning, Jesus decided to go and help them. So, He went to them by walking on water in the dead of that night.

As He got closer, they saw Him walking on water, but thinking that He was a ghost, they cried out in terror because they were all terrified. But Jesus spoke to them immediately, “Don’t be afraid,” He said, “Take courage, I am here!” As Jesus climbed into their boat, the wind stopped, and everything became normal. Jesus’ disciples were totally amazed.

Sometimes, the situation we are going through in life may be very similar to the situation the disciples faced in this story. As people of God, we may be favourably disposed to God and our fellowship with Him is unbroken. Right in the middle of our earthly journey, and as we obey the LORD and serve Him, we come to “a sharp bend in the road” [so to speak.] Something unexpected swings into our view prompting a reaction, for which we are totally unprepared.

Let us remember that it was Jesus Himself who commanded them to take the boat, go on the lake and head towards Bethsaida, so they were, as it were, totally in the will of God. However, immediately the problem started, Jesus saw them, He knew the extent of the problem they were facing and started coming toward them, walking on water. This was an unusual way to come to the aid of His disciples. They had never seen anybody walk on water, so they were immediately stricken with fear causing them to cry out in terror. They had probably though it was an evil spirit walking toward them until Jesus spoke to remove their fears.

Like these disciples of Jesus, walking in obedience and doing what is pleasing in the sight of God do not prevent us from facing desperate situations of life. However, we need to know with confident assurance that God sees and knows where we are and will of necessity come to our rescue immediately. God knows what you are passing through at any moment of your life. He understands your predicament much more than you will ever be able to imagine. He wants you to rest in Him and in His ability to intervene in seemingly serious or adverse situations of life and bring a desired solution.

In the Book of Isaiah 4915, the Bible says:

“Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for the child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you!”

Psalms 461 says,

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even thought the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.

Whatever you are facing today, do not fear. God knows that you’re there and He will come to your aid, like Jesus did for His disciples. You are special to God.

Virgin Mary A woman of Faith

I believe that the birth of Jesus which we will be celebrating next week is very unique in many ways.

  1. Firstly, it is unique in the sense that God decided to step out of eternity into time and space in the Person of Jesus Christ, to bless mankind.
  2. Secondly, it is unique in that God chose to share our humanity so that we might share His deity in Christ.
  3. Thirdly, it is unique in that God found a willing vessel, in the person of the virgin Mary through whom the Holy Seed was birthed into the world.

Prophetically, Jesus Christ is the “Seed of the woman” which God promised, back in the Book of Genesis. For God had said to Satan:

Because you have done this, You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust All the days of your life.
15 And I will put enmity  Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel
.” (Genesis 3:14-15)

So, God found in Mary that perfect vessel through whom the Holy Seed that would “bruise” the serpent’s head would be born into the world.

A lot is said about the virgin Mary when the Christmas story is told every year. She must have been in her late teens and early 20s when she was visited by the angel Gabriel who informed her about God’s plan to bring forth Jesus through her. Although she was engaged to be married, she was still a virgin; pure, morally upright, godly and God fearing. So she obtained God’s favour to become the mother of Jesus. It is also important to mention the fact that Mary’s faith in God was genuine and strong. That was why she could release her faith in God’s Word brought to her by the angel Gabriel. We see this much in Luke’s gospel, for the angel said to her:

36 Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren. 37 For with God nothing will be impossible.”

38 Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

 

After this angelic visitation, Mary took a trip to the hilly village of Judea to visit with her older relative Elizabeth and confirm the news of her pregnancy by herself. The Bible records that

39 Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! … 44 For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. 45 Blessed is she who [h]believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord.”

In this encounter between Elizabeth and Mary, something took place that is worthy of note. As Mary greeted Elizabeth, the growing baby in Elizabeth’s womb “kicked”, and she began to speak by the anointing of the Holy Spirit things about Mary that no one had previously told her. She said,

Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your wombShe called Mary, “the mother of my Lord”, obviously referring to Jesus who had just started growing inside Mary’s womb. Then she also said,

Blessed is she who [h]believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord.”

These last words are very significant, for they reveal that Mary’s faith in God’s Word brought by the angel Gabriel was what enabled God to perform this great miracle through her. As it was then, so it still is today. God needs us to believe what He has spoken, He needs us to exercise faith in what He has said as recorded in His Word, the Bible. You may not have the privilege of being visited by an angel today. That is even insignificant, as long as you believe is God’s word of promise. God’s word as recorded in your Bible, or spoken from the mouth of His servants. Your believing it will cause God to perform it. So like the virgin Mary, release your faith in God’s word today and see Him bring your own miracle into manifestation.

Salvation

I am starting out with a simple question. What is Salvation? I am sure if we look into several dictionaries we will come up with lots of fine definitions and good answers. But my answer to this question will be in the context in which it has been used in the Bible, especially the New Testamaent.

The root Greek word from which “Salvation” was translated is an all-inclusive word which in the English language means Healing (Restoration), deliverance, preservation, safety, prosperity, and security.

Jesus Christ came from heaven to bring salvation to the human race. The Bible records that the angel of God who was sent to announce His birth to Joseph His earthly foster father said in Matthew 120-21:

20  “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”

According to this passage of scripture, Jesus came into the world to save us from our sins. The Book of John 317 also says”

17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

And in the Book of Acts 410-12, the Bible says:

 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. 11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’ 12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

So from these three passages, it is obvious that Jesus Christ came into this world to bring salvation to mankind. From our definition of Salvation, we can conclude that Jesus came into our world to bring salvation, Healing (Restoration), deliverance, preservation, safety, prosperity, and security to everyone who would believe in His name.

When Jesus Himself began His earthly ministry, every where He went, He announced to those who came to hear Him preach and to be healed the words spoken concerning Him by prophet Isaiah many thousands of years before He was born. These words of Isaiah as quoted by Jesus Christ is found in the gospel of Luke 418-19, it reads:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the broken-hearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.

Jesus always announced this habitually and deliberately. He did this so that those who had gathered to hear Him may believe that He is the Messiah sent from God, and that believing they may be saved and healed. And indeed many believed and they were saved and healed.

However, things have changed so much today. Jesus ascended back to heaven over 2,000 years ago, but not so many believe today that He is the Saviour of the world. However, the same message He used to preach is what you are reading on this blog right now. That Jesus Christ of Nazareth is anointed of God, with the Holy Spirit and with power. He is the Saviour of the world, He saves from sin and the consequence of sin which is spiritual death or eternal separation from God. He is also the healer of sicknesses and diseases because when He hung on the Cross, He bore the sicknesses and diseases of mankind. Not only that, He is the deliverer from all kinds of satanic and demonic oppression, for on the Cross, He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth in objection or complaint because He knew He was there as our substitute. The Bible says, “He who knew no sin was made sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.

So, let me ask you, are you saved? If you are not, are you ready to accept Him as God’s gift for your sinfulness and exchange your sinfulness for His righteousness? There are no works of righteousness that any man can do that will be acceptable before God. Jesus has done it all. So, accept His offer of salvation right now. If you want to do that, pray the following prayer.

Lord Jesus, I believe that You are God’s gift for my sinfulness, You died so that I may live. I repent of my sins & confess you as my Saviour, right now. Thank You Father, for saving me, in Jesus name. Amen.

 

The Fear of God

One of the things the Bible strongly encourages the believer to do is to fear God. I want us to understand from the very onset that this is not the kind of fear which people have for bullies or the kind of fear we have when armed robbers are operating in our neighborhood, no! Rather, it is a reverential fear, it is a kind of respectful and reverential inward self-restraint from offending someone you love and respect.

In the Bible, under the Old Covenant, Moses the servant of God was explaining the essence of the commandments which God had given to the children of Israel to them. In Deuteronomy 1012, Moses said:

12 “And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, …

Here, Moses was telling the children of Israel that the fear of God is expressed in conduct, in a way that pleases God and in heart commitment to His service.

None of us have seen God at any time. However, we believe that He exists, so the genuineness of our faith in His existence must be seen in our attitude and conduct toward God and before fellow men. Conducting ourselves in the fear of God is how we show God that we truly believe in Him and also demonstrate before men that God is real to us.

Even though God spoke through Moses in the above manner to the children of Israel, they always responded in a negative way and they continually reciprocated the goodness which God showed towards them by flagrant disobedience and calculated misdeeds.

Even after Moses the servant of God died and Joshua his deputy took over the leadership, Joshua kept admonishing them the same way Moses did. In the Book of Joshua 2414, Joshua spoke to them along the same line, saying to them

14 “Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord”!

Today, believers are no longer under the ten commandments, but we are obligated to walking in love towards all men, because according to apostle Paul in the Book of Romans 139-10 ; obeying the law of love or walking in love towards others is equivalent to fulfilling all the other laws:

For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

A close observation of the general societal behavior today reveals an utter lack of the fear of God. We have many religious houses and institutions today, yet we see and hear of acts and behaviors that totally reveal a lack of the fear of God among ourselves as a people. Lawlessness, greed, immorality and every wicked vice abounds in the land. It is as if we are saying, “No man can stop me, I am answerable to no one, I am above the law.”

What those who perpetrate these acts seem to forget is that there is a God in heaven, who records all the evil deeds of the unrepentant and He will reward them with His severe judgment. Jesus Christ once said to those who were listening to Him as He preached:

27 “Whatever I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach on the housetops. 28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Because we haven’t seen hell fire before, many seem to think it is a fairy-tale, and that it doesn’t exist. They think their wicked deeds  will go unpunished. But such people are deceived, God will punish all and every evil deed, if those who indulge in them do not repent. The Bible says:

13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

14 For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.

Give your heart to God through Jesus Christ, He will birth the fear of God in you and everyday from today will take a new turn for the best. Have a good day.

Featherweight & Heavyweight

 

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

“16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. 17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

As I further meditate on 2 Corinthians 4, verses 16-18 seem to explode in my spirit. I see God, the ONLY true God who commanded LIGHT to shine out of darkness, revealing to us, His adopted children, in words that only leaves us imagining, the enormity of His love for us who He has redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. He had concluded what our future with Him will be, marvelous, glorious, beautiful, etc, even though we might face afflictions, persecutions and tests of our faith during our short sojourn here.

 

For verse 17 qualifies these afflictions, persecutions, trials and tests of our faith as “light”. This reminds me of the terms “light weight” and  “feather weight”. Paul the Apostle by divine inspiration also states the duration of such afflictions as for only a MOMENT, compared to what has been reserved for us which by character is MORE EXCEEDING, and in duration ETERNAL. In addition, it is also WEIGHTY or HEAVY and GLORIOUS. So, we are exchanging light or feather weights of satanically instigated afflictions which in God’s own estimation lasts for just a MOMENT, for a far MORE EXCEEDING AND ETERNAL WEIGHT OF GLORY.

This divine perspective which 2 Corinthians 4:17 gives us of our present travails gives me an inner strength and courage to continue to persevere and hold on to God’s Words of promise in the midst of hard times, until I receive my expected results. Apart from the fact that we WIN even NOW as we exercise our faith in the infallible word of God when we undergo trials and tests of faith, we also proceed to take full possession of what God had kept in store for us, the FAR MORE EXCEEDING AND ETERNAL WEIGHT OF GLORY. If you’ll ask me, I will say confidently that those believers in Christ who are living and walking (by His Grace) in the will of God now are in a WIN-WIN SITUATION.

So, don’t worry or allow yourself to be weighed down by the lightweight situations you may be going through presently. These are the things which we can see, and they are temporal or subject to change. But fix your eyes on the HEAVYWEIGHT. This we cannot see yet, but they are eternal and are never or will never be subject to change. We win either way, Hallelujah!!!