Archive for July, 2016

​Finding Solace in Trial!

Heb 12
6 For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, And He scourges every son whom He receives.”

In the context of Ezek 36:26-27 & Jn 3:3,16, we understand that when a person goes through the trials God sets before him/her, what sustains that person through that fiery trial is the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, as sited beautifully in Daniel 3:8-28. I don’t know how many of you are familiar with the purification process of noble metals such as gold and silver. Noble metals have a very high melting point, much higher than that of its impurities and so when metals like gold and silver are heated up to their melting point, these precious metals are then ready to have the dross removed in their molten metal. This is something along the lines of how we are sanctified into the likeness of Christ or shall I say the image of God. Please note that the likeness is in terms of moral character and not by physical appearance.

Psalm 119
71 It is good for me that I was afflicted, That I may learn Your statutes.
72 The law of Your mouth is better to me Than thousands of gold and silver pieces. 
73 Your hands made me and fashioned me; Give me understanding, that I may learn Your commandments.
74 May those who fear You see me and be glad, Because I wait for Your word.
75 I know, O LORD, that Your judgments are righteous, And that in faithfulness You have afflicted me.

An eminent 19th century theologian Charles Spurgeon once stated that the Christian when afflicted, should not be like a pet dog which bites the stick when disciplined by its master but should instead realize from whose hand his/her trial has come. I am citing this because we very often like to vent ourselves out on inanimate objects and our neighbour for being the reason/source of our anxiety. In such cases we need to step back from that situation and see it from a Biblical perspective so as to learn what God is trying to teach us from His reproof.    

Job 23
8 “Behold, I go forward but He is not there, And backward, but I cannot perceive Him;
9 When He acts on the left, I cannot behold Him; He turns on the right, I cannot see Him.
10 “But He knows the way I take; When He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

It must be understood that one cannot be sanctified into the likeness of Christ unless he/she is born of Christ Spirit, so as to bear noble substance, which comes from the indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit (1Jn4:4). I wonder how many of you are familiar with the concept of HALT, which is:

Hungry

Angry

Lonely

Tired

In most cases when you are suffering from anxiety, you are possibly dealing with either one of these trigger factors. In either case you need to HALT and think, what exactly it is that is making you feel so anxious in that moment. If you are grumpy because you are hungry then get something to eat. If you are Angry over something you can do little about then relax and listen to some Mozart, which is really relaxing. If you are Lonely, call up a friend you’ve been meaning to call for some time and have a chat. If there is nobody available for you to talk to in that moment, you can spend some time pouring your heart out to God in prayer. If you are Tired, then put off what you are doing in that moment for a later time if you can, and get some rest.

Deut 29
29 “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law.

Isaiah 54
8 “In an outburst of anger I hid My face from you for a moment, But with everlasting lovingkindness I will have compassion on you,” Says the LORD your Redeemer.

Isaiah 40
31 Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.

Now there are cases where HALT may not work for you and this is precisely what I am writing to you about. Many a times the cause of anxiety is not knowing what we are to do in that moment. In such cases, you need to reflect on what Deut 29:29 has to say and let your soul find its rest in the Lord Jesus Christ (Mt11:28). This is your time to wait on the Lord. Remember, no matter how great your anxiety is in that moment, you need to do what is right in the light of scripture until that moment arises in which God orchestrates a breakthrough for you (2Pet 1:19). Remember, though your trials may be great, if Jesus is indeed your Lord, you need to wait on Him because true prostration unto God lies in seeking the will of God, over your own and Jesus is indeed worthy of such true worship (Jn4:23).

Rev 5
11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands,
12 saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”

Rev 7
13 Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, “These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where have they come from?”
14 I said to him, “My lord, you know.” And he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Now, you may ask… how exactly does one wait on the Lord so as to find solace in trial? Well, I cannot teach you everything the Bible teaches in this post but I can surely advise you by saying you need to know your Bible from cover to cover. In waiting on the Lord, you are to secure your heart in deliberate and wilful obedience to the Moral Law and take every other destructive thought captive to Christ (2Cor10:5). Remember, the Moral Law states that you shall first love the Lord your God above all and second you ought to love your neighbour as yourself.

Proverbs 12
25 Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, But a good word makes it glad.

To conclude, I would like to say… when faced with anxiety, which you cannot manage with HALT, you need to continue doing whatever you are doing, while guarding your mind against every thought of giving into rampage and yield to that in which is exercising God’s good pleasure but only as that opportunity presents itself in its time. Remember, Christ is Sovereign (Mat28:18)! So your solace in trial is in adhering to Jesus’ way, seeing His purpose and not your own even in the midst of affliction (Prov21:2). This very much defines the Perseverance of the Saints, in which we come forth as gold.

God bless!

​How to Meditate… according to the Bible!

Joshua 1
8 This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.

Contrary to the kind of meditation that is trending in the world, the meditation the Bible teaches the believer is not one where you sit around doing nothing. Today we hear of yoga, which requires you to empty yourself of all thought. This however is far from what the Bible teaches concerning meditation because God teaches the believer His precepts (Ps 119:14-16), which the believer is supposed to remember and apply responsibly in his/her interactions with the environment and its people (Mat5:13). Today people want to learn meditation from people who have forsaken all responsibility and have seemingly attained enlightenment by wandering aimlessly through the land and smoking weed. 

Psalms 77
6 I will remember my song in the night; I will meditate with my heart, And my spirit ponders:
7 Will the Lord reject forever? And will He never be favourable again?
8 Has His lovingkindness ceased forever? Has His promise come to an end forever?
9 Has God forgotten to be gracious, Or has He in anger withdrawn His compassion? Selah.
10 Then I said, “It is my grief, That the right hand of the Most High has changed.”
11 I shall remember the deeds of the LORD; Surely I will remember Your wonders of old.
12 I will meditate on all Your work And muse on Your deeds.
13 Your way, O God, is holy; What god is great like our God?
14 You are the God who works wonders; You have made known Your strength among the peoples.
15 You have by Your power redeemed Your people, The sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah.

When I mull over what passes off as meditation in this day and age, I can’t seem to get my head around the Morning Laughter Yoga I often came across during my morning walk. Science says that a good laugh relieves stress and leaves your muscles relaxed for about 45 minutes but I don’t think this works when people force themselves to laugh. This is precisely my argument against the kind of unnatural breathing meditation requires today. The Bible often defines prayer as wrestling with God (Gen 32:24-30/Col 4:12), which is not to bring God to settle to our terms but it is war waged by our living spirit imputed in us through Christ (Jn 3:3,16) against our sinful nature in coming over to God’s terms and righteousness (Ps77:6-15). Such wrestling is real non-simulated meditation which requires you to given your 100% to God.

Deuteronomy 6
5 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.

Such manner of prayer gets your hearting racing with shortness of breath and as your eyes are on the verge of tears you come to terms with what is known as the “Perseverance of the Saints”. The righteous perseverance of these Saints is by the merit and to the credit of the Lord Jesus Christ because sainthood is God calling men/women in His Son Jesus (Rom1:17) to meditate by the might of His Holy Spirit, exercising the Moral Law in thought and deed unto God’s good pleasure.

Romans 8
3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh,
4 so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
5 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,
7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so,
8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Just as a person going to work mentally prepares himself/herself to handle a few things that he/she anticipates beforehand, so also is meditation, which does not require you to empty your thoughts but instead introspect what you have been doing so far and make that change in your life which is for the better. Remember the Moral Law requires you to put God first and second love your neighbour as you love yourself. That is to say, your meditation on God’s precepts should help you plan, how you aim to please God through the day and through your life. If you are feeling uneasy through the day you need to think back through the day as to what triggered that uneasiness in you and deal with it according to the knowledge of God.

Psalm 1
1 How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.

Remember, true meditation is not about emptying yourself but about filling yourself with the Holy Spirit because in Christ is your zeal for God and life. The world hates responsibility, which is something you see in abortion, in people raising their own children without discipline, in educational institutions, workplaces and politics. People love taking credit but naturally from fallen Adam despise the responsibility they must have for their environment and their neighbour. It is for this reason the world meditates by emptying itself of all thought because they will do anything to flush out the guilt of their failed stewardship upon the earth (Gen1:28), which their self-serving nature has no capacity to every realize or admit. Responsibility may be righteously painstaking but for those whose lives are accountable to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit empowers these with zealousness to accomplish their task because Jesus is worth it (Rev5:10-12). 

2Timothy 3
16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.

Understand, the Bible equips and readies the person mediating on scripture for Godly responsibility towards his/her environment and neighbour because unlike the world, the believer does not live as though he/she is a law unto himself/herself but that his/her life is accountable to Jesus. When you understand God is sovereign and pray to Him in your trials, your breathing automatically follows a rhythm, which relaxes and comforts you because you are placing your trust God, which makes every other thing fall in its place.

Hebrews 4
12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

As I conclude this post, I am hoping you understand that the prerequisite to such meditation is the knowledge of scripture because as Hebrews 4:12 says, the word of God is alive and active, the Word is life breathed out to us by God (Mat4:4). So when we reflect/meditate on scripture, we are enlightened by the Holy Spirit concerning the precepts of God, which is for the holistic benefit of our wellbeing. So unlike the world which practices its sloth even in meditation by way of emptying themselves out, true meditation requires you to diligently study the word of God i.e. The Holy Bible, which you are required to know from cover to cover.

God Bless!

​An Introduction to Spiritual Warfare

Ephesians 6
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.
14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness,
15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
16 in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

This is for those who have come over to God by power of Christ from a world fallen in Adam. Adam was given stewardship over the world but He fell for the lies of Satan and in eating the fruit of knowledge of good and evil, he received to himself and for all his posterity a standard of righteousness which was separate from God because from there he turned from serving God to serving himself. There was no longer any truth in Adam after that because he died in spirit and from his posterity came various religions, which fabricated every kind of god, to satisfy the peoples rebellion against the righteousness of God. Everything from human sacrifice, to people scarring themselves in worship, roaming nude and sexual perversion is what has defined religion for billions of people over the ages. As for the atheist they do all these things too but for different reasons because their spiritual disposition is no different.

Prov 8:36
34 “Blessed is the man who listens to me, Watching daily at my gates, Waiting at my doorposts.
35 “For he who finds me finds life And obtains favor from the LORD.
36 “But he who sins against me injures himself; All those who hate me love death.”

The first lesson in spiritual warfare is knowing God’s Law because in that is the real standard of righteousness by which we are to live. Now this can only happen if God has initiated a spiritual rebirth in you and the only way you can be know this, is if your life witnesses in itself a perseverance in seeking the Lord Jesus Christ through every trial and joyous moment (Jn3:3,16). Unlike other religions, Christianity is not about how you dress and what you eat, it is about how you think and act, just as I have cited below. As Jesus has said in Mat 22:36-40 the Moral Law hangs on two commandments, that we are to love God above all and second love our neighbour just as we love ourselves.

Exo 20:14
“You shall not commit adultery.

Job 31:1
I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a young woman.

Mat 5
27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery’;
28 but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

Spiritual Warfare is such a thing that it requires you to know the truth about the Lord Jesus Christ and that is something you can only receive from the Holy Spirit because only God can help you receive the truth about Jesus in your heart by drowning out the world’s nasty lies about Him, even when those hypocrites claim to be coming from a disposition of meaning well. The fact of the matter remains that if you don’t know the truth about Jesus (Jn14:6), you really don’t know right from wrong.

Mat 16
15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
17 And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.


John 6
43 Jesus answered and said to them, “Do not grumble among yourselves.
44 “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day.

For most people right and wrong concerning what you can do and what you cannot do is dependent on the masses. If everybody is into piracy, then piracy is ok because everybody is doing it. If everybody supports a woman’s choice to murder the baby in her womb, then it is ok to support abortion but today a woman wants to kill her own baby because responsibility is not fun. It is an established fact that life begins at conception because if conception does not happen, the life of the egg/sperm ceases by itself. If a person dies as a foetus that person dies for real and none of us would exist today if we died as unborn babies. Tomorrow somebody might want to kill you, would you support that too, after all it is that person’s choice. Such is the ludicrous nature of the righteousness the world knows and the best thing is they take pride in this horse shit. Take the manner in which the media covers gay pride and gay parades in the US, they receive 70% of media coverage, when they are only about 3% of that nation’s population. Do you know why this is, it is because the world in sick and this is what we are up against, people who want to reduce civil society to absolute anarchy because their appetites are destructive from Adam.

Isaiah 64
5 You meet him who rejoices in doing righteousness, Who remembers You in Your ways. Behold, You were angry, for we sinned, We continued in them a long time; And shall we be saved?
6 For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.

An eminent theologian A. W. Pink has said, the world is not governed by faith but by its senses because they all live to please themselves. Unfortunately, thought has nothing to do with pleasing the senses, so even by their own standard of righteousness what the world knows to be right is very different from what they feel like doing. Such is their plight in their broken communion with God.

Jeremiah 17
5 Thus says the LORD, “Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns away from the LORD.
6 “For he will be like a bush in the desert And will not see when prosperity comes, But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, A land of salt without inhabitant.
7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD And whose trust is the LORD.
8 “For he will be like a tree planted by the water, That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit.
9 “The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?
10 “I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds.

We live in a world that hates responsibility but we who are in Christ should understand that Adam was given stewardship over the world (Gen1:28), which he failed at when he fell to disobedience. We need to look at the world from the perspective of people living on rent (Mark 12:1-12), the unbelievers are nothing but defaulters who want the world for themselves while remaining ungrateful to God. They are nothing but a bunch of squatters who hate taking responsibility for their environment. We cannot respect them for their humanity because if these are out to destroy themselves, must they also take the earth with them? Must we respect their feelings when they have no capacity to care for what is right in the sight of God? Please do not misunderstand me, I am in no way advocating any sort of ethnic cleansing because unlike Islam (Saudi flag), Christianity is not propagated under the edge of the sword. Our sword is the Word of God (absolute truth), which pierces the hearts of men (Heb 4:12).

Gen 1
27 God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.

Rom 5
17 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.

If you are uncomfortable with all this am saying, please know I am not spewing hatred. I am merely telling you things as they are. Have you ever wondered why the world finds the truth in general to be bitter? This by itself should tell you that there is no truth is most people’s religion, even if they take immense pride in it. It is as the Apostle Paul says we are not to be ashamed of the Gospel for the sake of the people because we cannot compromise the truth about God just to make people feel comfortable. To them a living righteous God does not exist but that mind-set need not prevail in us who know God.

Romans 1
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “But the righteous man shall live by faith.”

Romans 3
3 What then? If some did not believe, their unbelief will not nullify the faithfulness of God, will it?
4 May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, “That You may be justified in Your words, And prevail when You are judged.”
5 But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? The God who inflicts wrath is not unrighteous, is He? (I am speaking in human terms.)
6 May it never be! For otherwise, how will God judge the world?

Spiritual Warfare is therefore resisting people in their unrighteousness (Ps1:1), which may involve not participating in their religious lies or robbery or bearing false witness against another or using a false measure to make a pay out or sexual immorality. You see, unbelievers have no capacity to trust God, they can at best trust in numbers (people), so what pricks them most when we resist them in their unrighteousness is a sense that awakens them to the existence of God, to whom they suddenly find themselves morally accountable, which they absolutely hate and since these have never practiced living in the truth, they never get the point until they stop living for themselves and start living for God. It is only when they turn to God that they really wake up and smell the coffee.

John 12
23 And Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.
24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
25 “He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal.
26 “If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also; if anyone serves Me, the Father will honor him.

The side you are on in this spiritual warfare depends on who your life is accountable to. If you more concerned about what the people think of you then you are on the losing side but if you live your life in faith believing that your life is accountable to Jesus Christ, then though you may be knocked down many a times (2Cor4:6-9), you will never be knocked out (Ps37:23-24) because the salvation the Lord Jesus has purchased for you by His blood is unlosable (Eph 6:17).

Romans 10
8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”–that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,
9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

To conclude, for as long as people deny God His rightful place (first) in their lives, these people will only see their neighbour as the means to serve themselves in their lawlessness (covetousness, adultery, robbery and bearing false witness from vested interest). Contrary to what the world is inclined to believe, the goal of spiritual warfare is peace and this can only be found in Christ (Is 9:6). Have you ever wondered how a world filled 7 billion people, who are only out for themselves, how does such a world not collapse to anarchy? It is by the power of God, who restrains people from actioning their evil desires. Yet these will not escape judgment for their evil motives (Prov 16:2) because as much as there is hope for the godly, the wicked will not escape God’s justice (Heb 1:8-13).

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