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Archive for the month “July, 2013”

WHY WORKS?

Someone asked a question to this effect in a group I’m in yesterday. The person rightly quoted Ephesians 2:8-9 which reads ‘For it is by grace you have been saved through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is a gift of God-not by works so that no-one can boast.’

The person has however also read James 2:26 which reads  … faith without works is useless.

And the question went something to the effect of: If we are saved by faith, why do we need works?

I had ventured an answer to the question based on my previous knowledge of the Word but as usual the Holy Spirit would not let the question off my chest until we had discussed it.

In that discussion, I was reminded of a very popular scripture that I’ve always known which reads: ‘You are the light of the world….. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your father that is in heaven- Matthew 5:14-16

I was also directed to another scripture which reads: ‘we are therefore Christ’s Ambassadors as though Christ was making His appeal through us-2 Corinthians 5:20.

And then, one final scripture from which I have already quoted a part ‘as the body without spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead-James 2:26

Why did I need so many scriptures you may ask? It’s interesting that the Holy spirit indulges my need for evidence when I’m confused.

Now this is how it all ties together: Our works is the outward manifestation of the faith we profess to have. Our works is not necessarily for God since he sees beyond them but they are necessary for men who see us-that’s the only way we can prove what we profess.

What’s more, when we do good works, God gets the glory-Matthew 5:16

Our works is a representation of our God-We are His ambassadors-2 Corinthians 5:20

Our works is the physical representation of our faith and gives life to our faith-James 2:26

Our works do not determine our salvation but they determine our rewards in heaven-2 Corinthians 5:10

It is abundantly clear that faith and works are not mutually exclusive of each other. They work hand in hand to make us into the Christians that we ought to be.

I need to show my faith more by my works!

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba

THE ‘I AM’ GOD

I was listening to the song ‘I AM by Eddie James this morning and another reason that God described himself to Moses as I AM in Exodus 3:14 just jumped into my spirit.

When you use the words I AM in the English Language, it is the present tense and it is usually followed by something that tells your designation

In this case, God actually leavesthe space for the designation blank.

So its like God giving you a blank cheque for you to fill in the blanks.

So It reads I am ————————–

Only God can do that, He’s the only one who can anything you need him to be per time.

He can be your provider today and your protector tomorrow or even both at once.

He leaves the designation blank so we can fill it with whatever it is we need Him to be per time.

Why don’t we take Him up on the offer? Why do we worry about designations that should be His?

What do you need Him to be to you today?

Put the designation on Him

He is the I AM God.

He is everything you need him to be!
I’m giving God the designations I was not designed to bear.

I’m dropping the weight that His to bear.

Who’s with me today?

Tobiloba

ARE YOU GOD’S CHILD? ACT LIKE IT

A daily dose from my favourite author – Max Lucado inspired this post

Most of us as Christians are quick to assert the fact that we are children of God. We shout it to the roof tops to everyone that cares to listen.

But how many of us really act like the children of God we profess to be?

Before you write this of as one of those guilt ridden, holiness according to man preaching posts, give me the benefit of the doubt and read on.

If you say you are a child of God, why is it so difficult for you to trust God? If you have kids or you’ve ever raised one, you’ll understand what I’m about to say,

Children have an unwavering trust. If I tell my niece I’m going to give her popcorn after lunch, she instinctively believes me and goes on to tell my other nieces and nephews that she’s going to get popcorn after lunch.

When you tell a child something, the child believes without question.

She does not wonder how I’m going to get the money to buy the popcorn or if the popcorn shop will be closed by the time I get there. She trusts without question.

A child (under normal circumstances) is not afraid to ask for anything from a parental figure. They are certain they’ll get it so they ask.  And if you say no, they keep asking. God knows we can learn a lesson in persistence from kids.

How come we as ‘children’ of God seem to think we need to figure out how God is going to answer our prayers? Why can’t we just away in trust like my niece with the popcorn?

Why do we stop asking for something we want simply because we get a ‘no’ the first time we asked? Why can’t we be as persistent as a little child is?

Why have we suddenly become ‘adults’ of God instead of ‘children of God that we claim to be?

I am a child of God.

I need to act like it.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHICH TRUTH?

I was in a bible study teachers meeting earlier today and for the first time, I connected two scriptures I have always known in a completely new way.

I’m sure you bible scholars already know this but pardon my ‘learner’ spirit. I just caught the revelation.

The first scripture reads: ‘And you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free’.-John 8:32

I’ve known this scripture for a while and I’ve always asked, ‘Which truth’? The answer I’ve always been given is –The bible of course’.

And the answer was right. But as I continued to grow in my walk with God and in communion with other believers, and I started to hear different interpretations of scripture, I have to admit I ‘almost’ started to feel like I could not trust the bible as the source of truth any more.

And then today God addressed that issue completely but opening my eyes to the truth in yet another very common scripture.

It reads: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through me’- John 14:6

It suddenly hit me. I need to know the truth.  Jesus is the truth. I need no other standard, He is the truth I need.

If I truly know Jesus, then I will be set free from the bondage of various doctrines making rounds today. I will not get sidetracked or confused by anyone.

The truth I need is the truth according to Jesus

The only way to know this truth is to know Jesus himself

I need to get to know more of Jesus.

Who is with me?

Tobiloba

 

 

HOW DOES YOUR FAITH SHOW?

If you’re like me and you’ve been a Christian for any amount of time, you’ve probably heard so much about how you need to have faith.

We’ve been told so much about faith that most of us can quote scriptures about faith from memory.

There’s however been a scripture that people either choose to forget or interpret in any way they choose –and it just usually rubs me the wrong way.

The scripture reads: ‘Faith, if not accompanied by deeds is dead’-James 2:17

For those that conveniently choose to forget this verse, they preach the ‘we are saved by faith only gospel and say that we do not need ‘works’. For those on the other extreme, they pursue some funny things under the umbrella of’ works’ sometimes to the detriment of their faith  and quote the scripture above as backing.

I have therefore had this question, How do you show your faith through your works?

Any witnesses in the house?

Read on my dear friends.

And then recently, I saw something that completely revolutionized my thinking about the faith and works dilemma.

‘…..The only thing that counts is faith, expressing itself through love’- Galatians 5:6

The ‘works’ that should accompany my faith should be things that demonstrate love. No wonder the 1st Corinthians 13 love is an action word and not an emotion.

If my works fall short of the standard of love as encapsulated in 1st Corinthians 13, then I cannot put them under the works that are accompanying my faith.

Faith without works is useless

The kind of works that should accompany my faith are the things portrayed as the characteristics of love in scripture.

The word has revealed another area in my life that needs to change.

My works need to line up with the word.

Yours need to do the same.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba.

WORK YOUR BLESSING

In an earlier post, I established that the blessing is spiritual.

Read that post here: https://tobilobaajayi.wordpress.com/2013/07/21/the-blessing/

As I continued to meditate on the concept of ‘The Blessing’, my mind was directed to yet another popular scripture. The scripture reads: ‘The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it. – Proverbs 10:22

A reading of the above scripture make it clear that the blessing of God is in no way money or physical possessions. The blessing is the conveyor of the riches not riches itself. How does that work? You make ask. Don’t worry those were the same questions I asked myself.

And this was the response: ‘Whatever your hands find to do, do it with all your heart…’-Eccl 9:10.

The blessing being spiritual rests on your work. The blessing added to your work brings riches-not just riches but the riches that last.

The blessing will make you rich buy you have to work it.

Go to work. Give your blessing something to rest on and multiply.

The blessing is not money but when added to work makes one rich.

Your inherent blessing+ your work= riches.

That’s enough motivation to send me to work every day.

I’m working my blessing.

Who is with me?

Tobiloba

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE BLESSING

You are already blessed!

When we hear of someone being blessed, we think of physical possessions and things that can be seen with the physical eye or perceived with the senses.

But a careful reading of the first blessing pronounced on man in Scripture in Genes 1:28, Man was not even physically present.

Man was not formed until Gen 2:7 after the blessing had been pronounced.

The blessing was not physical, it only manifested in the fullness of time when the man was ready to walk in it.

As a believer, you have every spiritual blessing you need-Ephesians 1:3

If they have not physically manifested, it is not because they do not exist, it is because the time is not yet right for you to walk in them.

When the time is right for the manifestation of the blessing, you will be ready to walk in it.

You don’t need to ask for what you already have.

While you’re waiting for the manifestation of the blessing, ask God to form you completely that you will be ready for the manifestation of the blessing.

I need to stop asking for what I already have.

I am already blessed.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba

 

WHO IS IN CONTROL?

Its funny how you think you understand a scripture until God opens your eyes and begins to show you completely new things from the same scripture.

Anyway I had an epiphany of sorts a few days ago when an extremely popular scripture dropped in my spirit and the Holy Spirit began to expand it in my heart.

The Scripture is: ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart, do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path. -Prov 3:5-6

Have you ever been confused as a Christian? Have you ever been at a crossroad and just not sure what to do? If you never have, thumbs up! I want to be like you when I grow up.

If you have, how did you work it out? Read on and discover with me the root of most confusion in our lives as Christians.

The first part of the scripture above says: ‘Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart’.

How many of us can really say we do that? Don’t we trust in our parents, friends, pastors and even our own intellect more than we trust the Lord?

Before you think you’re exempt, (I’m not by the way), think about it; when you are faced with a challenge, what’s the first thing you do?

Can you honestly say the first thing you do is take it to God?

And the next part attacks our inherent tendency towards self sufficiency. It tells us not to lean on our own understanding.

How many issues have you attempted to sort out in your head that you only brought to God when you hit a brick wall? We even justify it by saying, ’That’s the reason God gave us brains’.

The next part asks us to bring God into ALL our ways, not some.

Most of us pick and choose which areas of our lives God can influence and that why you will hear ‘Christians’ say things like: ‘Leave God out this matter’ or worse still interpret scripture to suit their perverted and wrong desires.

And we wonder why we are confused? God cannot direct us if He is still one of the very many options in our circle of trust; or we make Him a last bet after all other bets don’t pan out; or we choose and pick the areas of our lives He has a say in.

God will not direct what He does not control.

What God directs is never confused

Who/What controls your life?

Lord I surrender to your control.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba.

TAKE A BREAK

At the beginning of the month of July 2013, in the midst of all the happy new month greetings and all the ‘welcome to the month of perfection’ messages on Face book, I heard the Lord quietly say to me, ‘This is your month of rest’.

I immediately received the word, but recently, the Lord began to show me what He was saying.

He took me back to the creation story, and reminded me that for six days, He worked. He created.

Now, in an earlier post, I shared, how creation happens in the spiritual and manifests physically at formation.

Read that post here: https://tobilobaajayi.wordpress.com/2013/05/16/let-god-finish/

So the Lord showed me that on the seventh day, He rested-Genesis 2:2. In the seventh month of the year, He also wanted me to rest from my work.

To me, that just did not make sense, I agreed with the fact that I had worked hard in the first six months of the year, who hasn’t? But to rest without seeing the fruits of my labour? That seemed rather unwise.

Then God showed me that when He rested on the seventh day, most of the things he created had not yet manifested physically.

It was after He had taken a break that He went back to form most of these things including man-Genesis 2:7

At that point, my objections were silenced. If God rested before everything was formed who am I not to?

Have you like me, spent the last six months in the creation phase? Why don’t you take a break so that you can be ready for the formation stage?

If you’re like me, you’ll be tempted to get to work while you’re supposed to be resting. Don’t be surprised if nothing works the way you plan it.

It is because you’re working in the wrong season.

I need to relax in my rest season.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba

 

A SACRIFICE OF PRAISE

I was in church today and the choir sang a song about the ‘sacrifice of praise’ and it got me thinking.

Have you ever been in a place in your life where praising God was the last thing you wanted to do?

Have you ever been so angry at God that the thought of blaming God came more easily than praising Him?

If you haven’t, I desire your kind of faith.

If you have, read on my dear comrades.

You see, it is when you are in the situations above and others like it that praise becomes a sacrifice.

When you want to curse God and you praise Him instead, you are offering a sacrifice of praise.

Praise becomes a sacrifice when it costs you and goes beyond the inclinations of your natural mind. If you will have genuine faith, you will need to offer sacrifices of praise from time to time in your walk with God

There are two distinct places in scripture where references are made to a sacrifice of praise. They are: Jeremiah 33:11 and Hebrews 13:15.

In both cases people that were requested or admonished to offer ‘sacrifices of praise were not exactly in the most interesting of life positions, yet God expected them to praise Him.

God understand that you praise will have to be a sacrifice sometimes. The God thing is that it is those kinds of sacrifices that are pleasing to God.

I need to be able to whole heartedly praise God when I can’t find a natural reason to.

I need to be able to offer God a sacrifice of praise.

You should do the same.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba.

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