Category Archives: Discipline
Beware of greed and remain pure and just. Restrain yourself from every vice. He who cannot restrain himself, how will he be able to teach others restraint? – St Polycarp
Every professing Christian is the soldier of Christ. He is bound by his baptism to fight Christ’s battle against sin, the world, and the devil. The man that does not do this, breaks his vow: he is a spiritual defaulter; he does not fulfil the engagement made for him. The man that does not do this, is practically renouncing his Christianity. The very fact that he belongs to a Church, attends a Christian place of worship, and calls himself a Christian, is a public declaration that he desires to be reckoned a soldier of Jesus Christ.
Armour is provided for the professing Christian, if he will only use it. “Take unto you,” says Paul to the Ephesians, “the whole armour of God.” “Stand, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breast-plate of righteousness.” “Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.” “Above all, take the shield of faith” (Ephes. vi. 13-17). And not least, the professing Christian has the best of leaders, —Jesus the Captain of salvation, through whom he may be more than conqueror; the best of provisions,—the bread and water of life; and the best of pay promised to him,—an eternal weight of glory. ( J.C Ryle)
”Many are called, few are chosen, but fewer still are faithful. These are the overcomers spoken of ten times in the book of Revelation. They are disciples of Jesus who have not only been accepted by God but who have been tested by Him through many circumstances and who have been approved by Him.” – Zac Poonen
“Are you sowing into the Kingdom of God?”, that’s one question both good and corrupt preachers tend to ask their ‘flock’ these days. If you hear the preaching on TV chances are more that once you may heard “Are you sowing into the Kingdom of God? And if not then don’t expect God to bless you.” and so on. Questions of these sort make people fear a lot at times while others go even more miserly!
First off we are not to give our offerings to anyone who is preaching a false gospel. Secondly it’s not a sin to give our offerings which can help spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all the nations. And thirdly we are not called to live in deception. So, don’t get entangled into giving ‘seed’ offerings to those who are only looking forward to consuming your offerings for their personal luxuries instead of using it actually preach and by preach I mean preach the Gospel in its entirety. Those who preach prosperity as the sole output of believing in the Gospel need a lot of preaching as to why the 12 Apostles of Jesus except for John died by martyrdom instead of living like actual princes. O people of God, please check whom are you considering as a real preacher of the Gospel before you send your offerings to them. I once heard, that which preacher you give your offerings to, you end up partaking of their spiritual legacy. I that to this; so be careful if the preacher is not of the right spirit because you’d end up receiving the bad effects of the same!
With all this being said, there is less emphasis these days especially by quite a lot of preachers who are not telling their TV ‘flock’ to sow the seed of the Word of God into the lives of others. Now I’m not talking about brainwashing others into causing them to give their offerings at so and so ministry or preacher. But rather this is about preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ to others. Now for many reasons, there are people who are still not able to define ‘others’. So let me make it real to you; your numerous friends, relatives, colleagues, people everywhere who have still not heard of the Gospel are the ‘others’. Let me make it clear your aim is preach whenever possible. However don’t make an excuse that it’s not possible to preach at all. I’d say that if your life is in righteousness in the Lord God, then there is no reason to fear sowing the see of the Word of God into others you can reach out to. I’m not saying go to a remote desert or island and find people to preach to. If that’s however the call of God for you then I won’t mind at all, in fact I’d encourage you. My point is; there are others near enough to preach the Gospel to, so go out and reach to them.
Now even before you decide to preach to others, I’d strongly suggest that you get right with the Lord God. Don’t get disqualified when you aim to help others to grasp the Gospel and embrace it. Any sinful tendency must not cling to your heart when preaching. Don’t lie to your heart ever; that unless you tackle sin you won’t preach the Gospel but you don’t know when you’d stop sinning. Self deception is a great hindrance to preaching the Gospel! Some take pride in ‘living’ a holy life and consider themselves superior to sinners. That pride itself is a sin. If you are not sinning, then don’t exalt yourself but praise the Lord God for that.
The work that you do for the Lord God in sowing the seed of the Word of God into the life of others, must also be accompanied by sincerity and humility, else it would be dead works. You’d not like to lose your eternal reward that comes from the Lord God due to silly reasons like clinging to pride or lack of belief in the Gospel. But if you preach the Word of God for the love of God and in purity then be assured that your reward will surely endure forever in heaven and in new heaven and new earth to come.
Reflect on the below verses:
31 Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.” 32 But Jesus said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.” 33 So the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought him something to eat?” 34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work. 35 Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest’? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest. 36 Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. 37 For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ 38 I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.” (John 4:31-38)
Never ever indulge the flesh. Especially do not give place to the sin of pride. There are people who are deceived who say that pride is natural. It is not! Because when Lucifer the archangel indulged in pride about himself only then did he have designs to exalt himself to high places and even become like the Most High God. And that what happened next changed the course of this apostate angel; he was cast out of heaven along with his rebellious angels by the holy and mighty angels of the Lord God. This Lucifer is now called Satan the vile deceiver and accuser of the brethren. Remember that Satan the insolent one will receive his long due punishment at the Final Judgement by none other than Jesus Christ the humble and eternal Judge who already defeated him on the cross. So whenever you are tempted with pride remember to be humble like Jesus than rebellious like Satan.
Verses to reflect upon:
- Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. (Matthew 23:12)
- Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded…Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you. (James 4:5-8,10)
- You shall not commit adultery. (Exodus 20:14)
- If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. (Leviticus 20:10)
- Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” 11 “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” (John 8:10-11)
- [Jesus said:] “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.
“A gentle tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.” (Proverbs 15:4)
“Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” (Proverbs 18:21)
“Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit.” (1 Peter 3:10)
“If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.” (James 1:26)
For some to control one’s tongue when its pleasant all around is difficult. How much more difficult for them to keep it in check when their heart is filled with bitterness? As for the rest its still an achievement to control themselves when there is bitterness in their life.
However if we remember the words of the Bible then we should know the consequences of speaking the wrong things, the bad things and evil things. Let me make it real to you; there are considerable divorce cases going on which could have been prevented if either or both of the spouses would have not insulted each other by a very wide degree. Or there are people or children who keep running away from their parents because the parents love to speak evil words to them. Now, I don’t justify divorce nor unnecessary running away on account of such things but yes I do strongly recommend control of one’s tongue to prevent any further damage to oneself and others.
Some may say they didn’t actually mean it when they said things that were hurtful to others. That’s exactly my point. Don’t say things that you don’t mean to say in the first place and don’t make any of your emotions whether happiness or bitterness as your excuse for the same!
Make a decision this day to use your tongue more wisely. The benefits are many; better relationships, peace in your dealings with others, living clean and giving glory to God all in all. It’s up to you to control your speech but do pray to the Lord God for his healing and deliverance in this area.
You may pray like this:
O Lord God I ask through your Son Jesus Christ that I be holy as you are holy. Make my tongue an instrument of peace. Help me to speak words that are wise and life giving. Empower me by your Holy Spirit to not have be deceived by emotions whether they are mine or of others. In the name of Jesus, I cast out the spirit of discord and perversion of tongue from my life and totally reject the influence of all that is earthly, sensual and demonic. I pray that I be victorious in my life on the inside and the outside so that God be glorified all in all. Amen.