Articles for December 2016

REASONS TO CELEBRATE AT CHRISTMAS

reasons-to-celebrate

1. WE REMEMBER THE MIRACLE OF VIRGIN BIRTH

Matthew 1:23a
“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, …

Jesus came from heaven, uncontaminated by the Adamic blood line. Because he was born sinless and HE lived a sinless life, HE is able to make atonement for all.

Hebrews 7:26
Such a high priest truly meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, PURE, SET APART FROM SINNERS, exalted above the heavens.

2. WE RENEW THE AWARENESS OF GOD’S EVER HELPFUL PRESENCE.

Matthew 1:23b
…. and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.”

A blurry mental view of Jesus, and a foggy remembrance of GOD’S Presence and Power can be far more dangerous than the most complex web of problems diabolic forces can ever hatch.

2.1. GOD’S PRESENCE MEANS TIMELY HELP.

Psalms 46:1
God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.

2.2. FORGETTING THAT TRUTH LEAVES BELIEVERS WEAK AND VULNERABLE.

Deuteronomy 32:18-20
You deserted the Rock, who fathered you;
you FORGOT THE GOD who gave you birth.
The Lord saw this and rejected them
because he was angered by his sons and daughters.
“I will hide my face from them,” he said,
“and see what their end will be;
for they are a perverse generation,
children who are unfaithful.

It’s clear GOD does not want to be forgotten, neither Him nor His powerful acts of kindness toward mankind.

Psalms 103:2
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And FORGET NOT all His benefits:

2.3. ISRAEL FAILED OVER AND OVER AGAIN FOR FORGETTING OR IGNORING GOD’S SWORN PRESENCE.

Judges 2:1-2
The angel of the Lord went up from Gilgal to Bokim and said, “I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land I swore to give to your ancestors.
I SAID, ‘I WILL NEVER BREAK MY COVENANT WITH YOU, and you shall not make a covenant with the people of this land, but you shall break down their altars.’ Yet you have disobeyed me. Why have you done this?

Psalms 78:11
They FORGOT what he had done,
the wonders he had shown them.

Judges 3:7
The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord; THEY FORGOT THE LORD their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs.

A FORGETFULNESS THAT MADE THEM HASTY AND LOOSE DIRECTION.

Psalms 106:13
But they soon FORGOT what he had done
and DID NOT WAIT FOR HIS PLAN to unfold.

3. WE CELEBRATE A BEGINNING OF THE GRACE ERA

John 1:17
For the LAW was given through Moses; GRACE and truth came through Jesus Christ.

3.1. THE LAW WAS DIFFICULT TO LIVE BY

James 2:10
For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.

3.2. IT WAS POWERLESS TO SAVE FROM SIN

Romans 8:3-4
For what the LAW WAS POWERLESS to do because it was weakened by the flesh, GOD DID BY SENDING HIS OWN SON in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

3.3. THE GRACE CAME WITH SIGNS AND WONDERS

Acts 14:3
So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of HIS GRACE BY ENABLING them to perform signs and wonders.

3.4. THE GRACE THAT QUALIFIED US INTO AN INHERITANCE

Acts 20:32
“Now I commit you to God and to the word of HIS GRACE, which can build you up and give you an INHERITANCE among all those who are sanctified.

Colossians 1:12-14
and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has QUALIFIED you to share in the INHERITANCE of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

3.4. THE GRACE THAT MADE US JUST AS IF WE’D NEVER SINNED

Romans 3:24
and all are justified FREELY BY HIS GRACE through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

3.5. THE GRACE THAT SAVED US FROM THE FRUITLESS LABORS OF TRYING TO ATTAIN HEAVEN BY WORKS

Ephesians 2:8-9
For it is BY GRACE YOU GAVE BEEN SAVED, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.

4. WE REVEL IN THE MANY SCRIPTURES FULFILLED

Here are a few examples:

4.1. THAT HE WOULD BE BORN IN BETHLEHEM

Micah 5:2
“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
though you are small among the clans of Judah,
out of you will come for me
one who will be ruler over Israel,
whose origins are from of old,
from ancient times.”

Matthew 2:3-6
When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:
“‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”

4.2. THAT HE WOULD BE BORN OF A VIRGIN, AS A SIGN FROM GOD

Isaiah 7:14
Therefore the LORD himself will give you a SIGN: The VIRGIN will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

Matthew 1:18
This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit.

4.3. THAT HE WOULD BE A DESCENDANT OF ABRAHAM

Genesis 22:18
and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.”

Acts 3:26
When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways.”

4.4. THAT ATTEMPTS TO END HIS LIFE EARLY WOULD AFFECT MANY

Jeremiah 31:15
This is what the Lord says:
“A voice is heard in Ramah,
mourning and great weeping,
Rachel weeping for her children
and refusing to be comforted,
because they are no more.”

Matthew 2:16-18
When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi. THEN WHAT WAS SIAD THROUGH THE PROPHET JEREMIAH WAS FULFILLED:
“A voice is heard in Ramah,
weeping and great mourning,
Rachel weeping for her children
and refusing to be comforted,
because they are no more.”

SEVEN SIGN POSTS TO A TRULY MERRY CHRISTMAS

7-sign-posts

1. SINS MUST BE FORGIVEN, BECAUSE….

Psalm 32
Blessed is the one
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord does not count against them
and in whose spirit is no deceit.

Sin is a problem! It is an enemy of progress.

1.1. ….. IT IS ALWAYS LOOKING FOR OPPORTUNE MOMENTS TO EMBARRASS, DISPOSSESS, DOMINATE AND ALTER ONE’S DESTINY

Cain was meant to have a good life! Even after the cataclysmic and eternally unfortunate acts of his parents, GOD had made a way of escape, the Blood! And in the moments of his testing, the Angel of the LORD introduces us to a personality who was actively stoking Cain towards wrong doing and has been doing so ever since to all alive on earth. Cain suddenly found himself under a spell

Genesis 4:7 NLT
You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then WATCH OUT! Sin is CROUCHING AT THE DOOR, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.”

Proverbs 14:34 NKJV
Righteousness exalts a nation,
But sin is a reproach to any people.

That DOOR mentioned in Genesis, we meet it again in revelations

…. Behold I stand at the door and knock….

There’s competition for this Door

The enemy encroaches – the intention being to interfere
The LORD Jesus knocks – the purpose being to come in and hm

Numbers 32:23
But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the Lord; and be sure your sin will find you out.

ITS TRACKER IS RELENTLESS

Numbers 32:23
“But if you don’t do what you say, you will be sinning against God; you can be sure that your sin will track you down.

1.2. ….. IT COMPROMISES YOUR CHANCES OF VICTORY AND UNDERMINES BATTLE READINESS WHEN FACED WITH LIFE THREATENING SITUATIONS

Psalms 78:9-11
The children of Ephraim, being armed and carrying bows,
Turned back in the day of battle.
They did not keep the covenant of God;
They refused to walk in His law,
And forgot His works
And His wonders that He had shown them.

1.3. ….. IT SLAMES DOORS OF OPPORTUNITY GRANTED BY GOD FOR GOOD SUCCESS

Proverbs 28:13
He who covers his sins will not prosper,
But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.

1.4. ….. IT SLOWS DOWN FIRST GRADE HEAVENLY SUPPLIES

Psalms 81:13-16
“If my people would only listen to me,
if Israel would only follow my ways,
how quickly I would subdue their enemies
and turn my hand against their foes!
Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him,
and their punishment would last forever.
But you would be fed with the finest of wheat;
with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.”

1.4.1. AND YET YOU WERE NOT MADE FOR SCARCITY AND LOW GRADE

Deuteronomy 8:7-9
For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land—a land with brooks, streams, and deep springs gushing out into the valleys and hills; a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey; a land where BREAD WILL NOT BE SCARCE and you will lack nothing; a land where the rocks are iron and you can dig copper out of the hills.

1.5. YOU WERE NEVER MEANT TO SUFFER JUDGEMENT WITH THE DEVIL – HELL IS NOT FOR YOU

1 Thessalonians 5:9
For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

1.6. SO THAT SHOULD HE APPEAR AROUND THIS SEASON, YOU ARE READY

Hebrews 9:28
so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.

2. DESTINY RELATIONSHIPS MUST BE SERVICED:
FOCUS MUST BE DELIBERATE ON THESE

2.1. THAT’S WHERE THE BLESSING OF GOD RESTS

Psalms 133
How good and pleasant it is
when God’s people live together in unity!
It is like precious oil poured on the head,
running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron’s beard,
down on the collar of his robe.
It is as if the dew of Hermon
were falling on Mount Zion.
FOR THERE THE LORD BESTOWS HIS BLESSING,
EVEN LIFE FOREVERMORE.

Service the relationships that carry life and Blessing. Treasure them. Seek them out,
Parents – your children are to be parented. Don’t live them to their own ways!
The worst thing to be done to a child is to give them bread and leave them to their own ways.

Proverbs 29:15
The rod and rebuke give wisdom,
But a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.

Children your parents are to be honored. Many of our parents are single parents. They may have had you when they were young and vulnerable, The need to go back to school, the need to assert themselves and get what they could call theirs, job, life, spouse etc. … And you were already growing, there’s been a lot of sacrifices. No parent is perfect! We learn as we go, sometimes we make errors in judgement. Bear with us, pray for us, respect us, GOD will reward you.

NB. Never wait for anyone to “earn your respect”. Respect them for where GOD placed them in life!

PARENT

HUSBAND

PRESIDENT etc.

1 Peter 2:17
Respect everyone, and love the family of believers. Fear God, and respect the king.

Your Pastor:

2.2. WHATEVER GOD TREASURES, THE ENEMY TARGETS THE HARDEST

The fights in your family are proof that GOD’S eyes are on those relationships.
Salvation often goes by families! When you gather together, you reinforce one another. The devil is afraid of family oneness and harmony, lest you club against him and his kingdoms suffer loss. So when families gather, demons unleash spirits of senseless feuds, grudges, evil words, destructive competition, inexplainable rivalry and sometimes plain apathy

GOD TREASURES FAMILY COHESION – WE KNOW HIS HEART IS THERE

Matthew 6:21
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

2.2.1. EVEN PRAYERS ARE WEIGHED AT THE SCALE OF RELATIONSHIPS

SPOUSES:

1 Peter 3:7. NLT
In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.

1 Peter 3:7 NIV
Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.

1 Peter 3:7 AMP
In the same way you married men should live considerately with [your wives], with an intelligent recognition [of the marriage relation], honoring the woman as [physically] the weaker, but [realizing that you] are joint heirs of the grace (God’s unmerited favor) of life, in order that your prayers may not be hindered and cut off. [Otherwise you cannot pray effectively.]

1 Peter 3:7 MSG
The same goes for you husbands: Be good husbands to your wives. Honor them, delight in them. As women they lack some of your advantages. But in the new life of God’s grace, you’re equals. Treat your wives, then, as equals so your prayers don’t run aground.

2.2.2. PARENT CHILDREN RELATIONSHIPS:

Ephesians 6:1-4
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

2.2.3. SPIRITUAL FAMILY MEMBERS:

1 John 3:14-15 NLT
If we love our brothers and sisters who are believers, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead. Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.

3. SOW SEEDS OF KINDNESS

Luke 6:31
Do to others as you would have them do to you.

3.1. GOD WILL SEE TO IT THAT YOU DO NOT LOOSE YOUR REWARD

Colossians 3:23-24
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.

1 Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.

4. SHARE YOUR FAITH GLADLY – THAT’S GROWTH

Philemon 1:6
[And I pray] that the participation in and sharing of your faith may produce and promote full recognition and appreciation and understanding and precise knowledge of every good [thing] that is ours in [our identification with] Christ Jesus [and unto His glory].

NB. What better time to share with others the real reason for the season.

5. REFLECT DEEPLY ON THE PURPOSE OF JESUS BIRTH

Where purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable

The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing

5.1. HE CAME TO SAVE SINNERS

1 Timothy 1:15
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.

5.2. HE CAME AS HIGH PRIEST OF THE GOOD THINGS!!!

Hebrews 9:11-12
But when Christ came as high priest of the good things that are now already here, he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not made with human hands, that is to say, is not a part of this creation. He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.

5.3. HE CAME THAT THOSE WHO BELIEVE MAY HAVE HAVE ABUNDANT LIFE

John 10:9-10
I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

5.4. HE CAME TO BRING WITH GOD PEACE AND ACCESS TO THE FATHER

Ephesians 2:17-18
He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

5.5. HE CAME TO SET THE CAPTIVES FREE

Luke 4:18-19

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

NB. When church people forget that, they get satisfied with just a little service and get impatient when the Spirit must move to set the captives free!

6. REJOICE INTENTIONALLY

Philippians 3:1
Further, my brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you.

Philippians 4:4
Rejoice in the Lord always [delight, gladden yourselves in Him]; again I say, Rejoice!

6.1. WHEN YOU SEE NOTHING IN THE NATURAL TO MAKE YOU SMILE

Habakkuk 3:17-19
Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.
The Sovereign Lord is my strength;
he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
he enables me to tread on the heights.
For the director of music. On my stringed instruments.

7. VERBALIZE YOUR GRATITUDE PASSIONATELY

Psalms 26:7-8
That I may proclaim with the voice of thanksgiving,
And tell of all Your wondrous works.
Lord, I have loved the habitation of Your house,
And the place where Your glory dwells.

7.1. NO SMELLY FISH BELLY WILL BE ABLE TO CONTAIN YOU WHEN YOU ARE OVERFLOWING WITH THANKFULNESS

Jonah 2:9-10
But I will sacrifice to You
With the voice of thanksgiving;
I will pay what I have vowed.
Salvation is of the Lord.”
SO THE LORD SPOKE TO THE FISH, AND IT VOMITED JONAH ONTO DRY LAND.

The slippery, slimy, smelly, sticky circumstances of life will not be able to hold you down when you overflow with thankfulness!

7.2. YOUR ENEMIES WILL HAVE A “HEAVENLY VISITATION”

Jeremiah 30:19-20
Then out of them shall proceed thanksgiving
And the voice of those who make merry;
I will multiply them, and they shall not diminish;
I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small.
Their children also shall be as before,
And their congregation shall be established before Me;
And I WILL PUNISH ALL WHO OPPRESS THEM.

Isaiah 30:32
Every stroke the Lord lays on them
with his punishing club
will be to the MUSIC of timbrels and harps,
as he fights them in battle with the blows of his arm.

PRAYERS FOR LIGHT TO SHINE ON OUR WAYS

prayers-for-light-to-shine-on-our-ways

1.   JUST AS LIGHT WAS FIRST TO BE CREATED,  MAY LIGHT SHINE ON YOU AND DISPEL ALL DARKNESS.

Genesis 1:3-5

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.

YOUR DAYS SHALL BE MARKED BY LIGHT!

2.  JUST AS LIGHT WAS CREATED FIRST, MAY THE LORD’S LIGHT BE FIRST IN YOUR LIFE.

2B.  GOD CALLED LIGHT DAY – WHEREVER LIGHT SHINES A NEW DAY IS DAWNING.

 Genesis 1:5

God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.

3.   LIGHT WILL NOT ONLY BE PRESENT, IT WILL GOVERN YOUR LIFE.

Genesis 1:16-18

Then God made the greater light to RULE  the day, and the lesser light to RULES the night. He made the stars also. God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness.  And God saw that it was good.

4.  THE LORD IS WILLING.

Psalms 18:28

For You will light my lamp; The Lord my God will enlighten my darkness.

THE GOOD YOU DO WILL SHINE AS NOON DAY, AND SPEAK FOR YOU.

Psalms 37:6-7

He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, And your justice as the noonday. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.

5.   THE LIGHT OF GOD SPEAKS AN END TO MY OPPRESSION AND INNER TURMOIL.

Psalms 43

 Vindicate me, O God, And plead my cause against an ungodly nation; Oh, deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man! For You are the God of my strength; Why do You cast me off? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill And to Your tabernacle. Then I will go to the altar of God, To God my exceeding joy; And on the harp I will praise You, O God, my God. Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.

6.  THE LIGHTS OF CREATION MARK TIMES AND SEASONS – IT’S OUR TIME.

Genesis 1:14

Then God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years;

7.   THE LIGHT GOD WAS CONTESTING – THERE WAS A WAR – GOD ID STILL IN CHARGE.

Exodus 10:21-23

The Ninth Plague: Darkness Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, darkness which may even be felt.” So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days. They did not see one another; nor did anyone rise from his place for three days. But all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.         

THE IDOL OF LIGHT WAS JUDGED!

8.   LIGHT AND TRUE LEADERSHIP CREATE AN ENVIRONMENT WHERE PEOPLE’S GIFTS AND ABILITIES BLOSSOM.

2 Samuel 23:3-4

The God of Israel said, The Rock of Israel spoke to me: ‘He who rules over men must be just, Ruling in the fear of God. And he shall be like the light of the morning when the sun rises, A morning without clouds, Like the tender grass springing out of the earth, By clear shining after rain.’

9.  THE FOLLOWING OF THE LIGHT IS PROOF OF A TRANSFORMED HEART.  

Isaiah 5:20

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

PRAYERS AGAINST WITCHCRAFT

prayers-against-witchcraft

Ps 83
Ps 35

ITS ALWAYS THOSE WHO ARE BEHIND YOU WHO BACKBITE YOU

HOW TO OVERCOME WITCHCRAFT

1. BE SECURED IN THE LOVE OF GOD

Deuteronomy 23:5
However, the Lord your God would not listen to Balaam but turned the curse into a blessing for you, BECAUSE THE LORD LOVES YOU.

2. REPEAT THE BLESSING OVER AND OVER AGAIN

Joshua 24:10
But I would not listen to Balaam, so he blessed you AGAIN and AGAIN
AND I DELIVERED YOU out of his hand.

Where Blessings are repeated curses break – deliverance abounds

3. REMEMBER THEIR END AND TAKE COURAGE

Psalms 83:9-10
Do to them as you did to Midian,
as you did to Sisera and Jabin at the river Kishon,
who perished at Endor
and became like DUNG ON THE GROUND.

HOW NOT TO BE DETERRED

how-not-to-be-intimidated
1.   HAVE A FRESH AND CORRECT GRASP OF COVENANT.

 

Judges 2:1-2

 

Then the Angel of the Lord came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said: “I led you up from Egypt and brought you to the land of which I swore to your fathers; and I said, ‘I will never break My covenant with you. And you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall tear down their altars.’ But you have not obeyed My voice. Why have you done this?

 

From the Angel’s report, Israel’s weaknesses came from 

 

1.1.   a faulty or inferior understanding of the covenant
1.2.   Alliances with what they saw as opposed to the unseen
1.3.   A forgotten testimony of GOD’S POWER

2.   EVERY TIME ISRAEL’S PICTURE / VIEW OF GOD DIMINISHED THEY FALTERED

 

Judges 2:7

 

So the people served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great works of the Lord which He had done for Israel.

 

2.1.   POOR CONNECTION TO RICH HISTORY / TESTIMONY

 

Judges 2:10

 

When all that generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation arose after them who did not know the Lord nor the work which He had done for Israel.

 

2.2.  SUCCUMBED TO SURROUNDING INFLUENCES

 

Judges 2:11-12

 

Then the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and served the Baals; and they forsook the Lord God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt; and they followed other gods from among THE gods OF THE PEOPLE WHO WERE ALL AROUND THEM, and they bowed down to them; and they provoked the Lord to anger.

 

2.3.  FORFEITED THEIR BEST DEFENCE AND SUPPLIES

 

Psalms 81:10-16

 

I am the Lord your God,
who brought you up out of Egypt.
Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.
“But my people would not listen to me;
Israel would not submit to me.
So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts
to follow their own devices.
“If my people would only listen to me,
if Israel would only follow my ways,
how quickly I would subdue their enemies
and turn my hand against their foes!
Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him,
and their punishment would last forever.
But you would be fed with the finest of wheat;
with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.”

 

3.   TEARS DON’T ALWAYS BRING BACK LOST OPPORTUNITIES

 

Judges 2:4

 

So it was, when the Angel of the Lord spoke these words to all the children of Israel, that the people lifted up their voices and wept.

 

CRITICAL POSTURE FOR SUCCESS

critical-posture-for-successCRITICAL POSTURE FOR SUCCESS

1. IT IS ORDERED BY GOD

Leviticus 26:13
I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt so that you would no longer be slaves to the Egyptians; I broke the bars of your yoke and ENABLED YOU TO WALK WITH HEADS HELD HIGH.

2. IT IS MEANT TO UPSET YOUR ENEMIES

Psalms 23:5
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.

3. IT DEFIES ENEMY DICTATES / LIMITATIONS

Numbers 33:3-4
The Israelites set out from Rameses on the fifteenth day of the first month, the day after the Passover. They marched out DEFIANTLY IN FULL VIEW of all the Egyptians, who were burying all their firstborn, whom the Lord had struck down among them; FOR THE LORD HAD BROUGHT JUDGEMENT ON THEIR GODS.

Defiance: Open resistance; Bold disobedience

4. IT UPSETS THE NOTHING STRAIGHT NOTHING FIRM ENEMY STRATEGY

Luke 13:11-13
And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified

A daughter of Abraham was bound for eighteen years! The challenge with this limitation is that, when seated, the victims can look normal ….. until they try to stand!

5. IT IS MEANT TO MARK THE LEADER GENERATION

Genesis 37:7
We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.”

NB. In the case of Joseph, it was to mark Joseph as a leader among them. But for us, the royal priesthood, it is to meant to mark a leader generation, those who lead a righteous and exemplary life

6. IT EXUDES THE CONFIDENCE OF UPRIGHT LIVING

Proverbs 10:9. KJV
He that walketh uprightly walketh surely:
but he that perverteth his ways shall be known.

Proverbs 10:9 MSG
Honesty lives confident and carefree,
but Shifty is sure to be exposed.

Proverbs 28:1
The wicked flee though no one pursues,
but the righteous are as bold as a lion.

7. IT INSPIRES THE COURAGE TO ATTACK WHERE NECESSARY

Proverbs 30:29-31
“There are three things that are stately in their stride,
four that move with stately bearing:
a lion, mighty among beasts,
who retreats before nothing;
a strutting rooster, a he-goat,
and a king secure against revolt.

IMPORTANT THOUGHTS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

important-thoughts
1.  AS YOU TRAVEL

1.1. THE LORD WILL BE WITH YOU AS YOU COME AND GO

Psalms 121:8

the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

2 Samuel 22:33

It is God who arms me with strength
and keeps my way secure.

2.  ANGELS WILL NOT BE SCARCE AROUND YOU

Psalms 91:11

For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;

3.  NO SECRET PLAN TO HARM OR HINDER WILL PREVAIL AGAINST YOU

Psalms 31:20

In the shelter of your presence you hide them
from all human intrigues;
you keep them safe in your dwelling
from accusing tongues.

4.  NO EVIL WORDS UTTERED AGAINST YOUR WELL BEING WILL HAVE ANY BEARING ON YOU FOR REFUSING TO INDULGE IN WICKEDNESS

Job 5:21

You will be protected from the lash of the tongue,
and need not fear when destruction comes.

4.1.   WHEN THEY BAD MOUTH YOUR RESOLVE TO ABSTAIN FROM WILD PARTIES AND ALTERS OF DARKNESS – FEAR NOT

1 Peter 4:4.  NIV

They are surprised that you do not join them in their reckless, wild living, and they heap abuse on you.

1 Peter 4:4 AMP

They are astonished and think it very queer that you do not now run hand in hand with them in the same excesses of dissipation, and they abuse [you].

5.   YOUR REST IS SECURE IN CHRIST THE HOPE OF GLORY

Job 11:18

You will be secure, because there is hope;
you will look about you and take your rest in safety.

6.  NO PANIC ATTACKS – NO NIGHT MARES  –  NO INVOLUNTARY SLEEPLESS NIGHT. 

Psalms 4:8

In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, Lord,
make me dwell in safety.     

7.   CONCERNING YOUR WORK

7.1.   ANY PLAN / CONSPIRACY TO REPLACE OR UNSEAT YOU SHALL NOT SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY.

Psalms 16:5

Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup;
you make my lot secure.

7.2.  THOSE WHO HATCH YOUR DOWN FALL DURING YOUR ABSENCE – THEIR PLAN WILL BACKFIRE

Psalms 7:16

His trouble shall return upon his own head,
And his violent dealing shall come down on his own crown.