Category Archives: Doing God’s will

Great But Dented Series # 5

Our focus this time around is Aaron, senior brother to Moses. We see also that undying love of the Lord outweighs the dent in the personality of a great man of God. No one is completely sinless out of all notable men and women of God except our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, this post should not be viewed as judgemental, rather it mirrors mankind as clay in the hand of the potter. The potter can mould any shape depending on his discretion. One common thread among these great people is that they do not set out to despise God.

Let us look at the life of Aaron who God appointed as spokesman to Moses who presented his speech defect to God. He was reluctant to take up the job of freeing the children of Israel from bondage in Egypt. God honored his honest supplication and chose Aaron to be spokes person even though he was senior to Moses in age. Ex  7: 1-2 The Lord said to Moses: “See, I have made you as God to Pharoah, and Aaron your brother shall be your prophet. You shall speak all that I command you. And Aaron your brother shall tell Pharoah to send the children of Israel out of his land.” Aaron was blessed along with his junior brother, Moses. Aaron’s rod was used in performing miracles. It turned into snake that swallowed Egyptian magician’s snakes. It was used to perform the plagues in Ex. 7:10 – 8:17. Aaron was so blessed that from him descended the class of priests in Israel Ex. 29: 9. He made an atonement that stopped a plague. His rod even though dry budded in showing the power of God vested in him.

Aaron’s most significant sin was the sheepish way he allowed the children of Israel to turn into idolatry without any words of restraint from him. When Moses went up to the mountain of God to receive the ten commandments, the children of Israel demanded to be given a god that they claimed led them out of Egypt. To them they did not know what had become of Moses and so they could not wait any longer. Aaron was clearly afraid of the faces of his hard-hearted co-travellers. Exodus 32: 1-5 They forgot the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob their fore-fathers. Having any other god other than the od of Israel was and still is the most abominable sin against Yahweh, their God. Aaron was also part of the conspiracy that eared Miriam leprosy as punishment. It was by virtue of his anointed priestly dress that he was not made a leper at least for a season. However, God forgave him from which we conclude that no mortal being is virtually free from committing sins, only unrepentant sinners like King Saul and Judas Iscariot will fail to benefit from God’s overwhelming grace and love. Aaron did neither rationalized his position nor justified why he did what he did with the children of Israel Exodus 32: 21-24

 

 

Great But Dented Series # 4

This time around, our search light is on Moses the lawgiver, prophet and servant of God. The bible described him as the most humble of all mankind that ever lived. Moses was born at a time when oppression was at its climax from the Egyptians to the Hebrews. Ex, 1: 22  – 2: 22. At the same time, Pharoah gave a decree that all male Hebrew children should be killed. By divine providence Moses was spared and was even brought up in Pharoah’s palace as a son of the Princess. He was recognized as a Prince of Egypt but he identified with his oppressed people. In practical terms he had a soft spot for the Hebrews, to the extent that when an Egyptian task master was manhandling a Hebrew man, he was filled with great anger. He attacked the task-master. Moses jumped on the oppressor and killed him in the process.

This led to his fleeing to Midian where he stayed for forty years. Exodus 2: 15-25. He also had a rare privilege of God’s call, through the burning bush experience, to liberate the Israelites. Ex 3: 2-5 God endowed him to cause plagues to ravage the Egyptians because of Pharoah’s intransigence. The Hebrew free slave labor was not to be lost because it provided cheap source of their prosperity. Since God had hearkened to the cries of HIS chosen people, Moses loomed larger than the size of “the young prince of Egypt from the slave stock”. In other words, Moses became greater than Pharoah. His “Let my people go” was an irresistible order that the king was forced to obey. Ex. 7: 14 – 12: 30

He led the Israelites for 40 years on their way to the promised land. He was liaison between God and his Hebrew people for the supply of all their needs for water and food (manna from heaven and supply of quail birds for meat). However, in spite of his spirit filled personality, his readiness to die instead of the hard-hearted Hebrews and his extreme humility, that which is human in him made him to incur the wrath of God. The incessant provocation of his people turned his anger on. He broke the first two tablets of the ten commandments because after 40 days on Mt Sinai his people changed allegiance from God their deliverer to molten image which they made Aaron to craft for them. Ex. 32: 19 (NKJV) He disobeyed God’s instruction to stretch forth his rod rather than striking the rock. It got him on the wrong side of God and was unable to reach the promised land. He was made to see it and was asked to hand over to his apprentice Joshua who was having the necessary anointing for the onerous task ahead.

Great but Dented Series # 3

This is a human perspective concerning the life of NOAH the man of God that was used to start life afresh after the deluge.The greatness of prominent bible characters like NOAH is never in doubt. Hence, there is no justification for passing judgement on them. Matthew 1: 7 says: “Judge not that you be not judged” However, the dents they had in varying degrees show how man has always shown their humanness or the frailty in human nature. Jesus is the only historical PERSON that had no sin. he remained dent-free and yet He was hated, maligned , beaten , scourged and crucified all for mankind’s redemption from sin and death.

Genesis 6: 8 “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” In Genesis 6: 11-16, God saw that the world was corrupt and wicked, and therefore commissioned Noah to build an Ark for all in creation both animate and inanimate were to be represented. It was to be huge enough to accommodate all to preserve existing species before the coming of the flood. The deluge wiped out every thing in creation except those that were in the Ark of salvation. For Noah to have been chosen to start afresh with everything in creation that was preserved in the Ark showed that he was a man God was interested in to start the new world. It was a great divine honor and privilege.

As those saved came out to populate the earth, Noah became a farmer. Genesis 9: 20-28 revealed the dent in his status of righteousness. Verse 21 states,”Then he drank of the wine and was drunk and became uncovered in his tent, He woke up and knew what his younger son has done to him” (NKJV) Such a righteous man dented his image for drinking himself to stupor and had to place curse on Canaan. Why is it hard for mankind to forgive those that offended them. Jesus said forgiving should be up to seventy times seven. In other words, forgiving offenders is limitless. Psalm 130: 3-4 “If the Lord should mark iniquities, Oh! who could stand? but there is forgiveness with you That You may be feared” It is a lesson on how to live sinless life and remain undented before our Father in Heaven. This post or others in the series is not trying to be judgemental.

Great but Dented Series # 2

There are so many parameters to be considered before concluding on whether or not one is great or otherwise. Greatness is also related to differing situations or circumstances. One might be great in this or that aspect of life. It may be in academics, business, professions like Law, Architecture, Athletics, Politics or Medicine. The level of success and the extent to which the individual had created joy, peace and many more for the society, usually determine how great the person is. Sir Winston Churchill was full of regrets that he had not the luxury of attending Oxford or Cambridge, the two premier Universities in Britain but yet he became a great statesman and wartime resilient Prime Minister of Britain. His greatness was not in contest with the like of Jeremy Bentham who was a great political philosopher.
Adolph Hitler was known for his being pathologically wicked in the way he perceived others as against his Deutschland and especially his total abhorrence of the Jews with the attendant pogrom and disruption of peace in the world to say the least.

Focusing on Methuselah, we read from the bible account that he lived longest of all known people of the world for a total of 965 years. Is that not great? There was no record of sin. He did not drink to stupor to a stage of having to sleep naked that could have led to sodomy. He was not known to have cursed his children or any other person. He was not known to have sinned against God. One can surmise that he was a good man but recorded no spectacular feat like his father Enoch. “And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him” Genesis 5: 24. Greatness in any field that will benefit humanity should be the prayer point for all believers in order to leave their footprints on the sand of time.

Spiritual Strength

Spiritual strength is divinely superior to our physical strength. It is invincible.

Spiritual strength is divinely superior to our physical strength. It is invincible.

Being strong in Jesus Christ constitutes spiritual strength. It is the quality in a believer that makes him to tenaciously believe in the inspirational words of God especially when confronted with daunting situation. (Jack Zevada: www.christianity.about.com…strength) A unique example is the praise and worship songs of Paul and Silas in prison. Acts 16: 25-30. Their spiritual strength triggered off God’s earthquake that shattered the shackles, fetters and chains used to hold them bound. The same spiritual strength in them made them to boldly and honestly remain and waited for the jailor to see that they were not jail-breakers. They were fearless of what man could do. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27: 1) God’s spiritual words are a source of strength to all believers. No doubt the jailed Apostles, in spite of their ordeal were so confident that load of fear did not manifest in them rather, by their spiritual strength, the jailor and the magistrate feared them. They could no longer prosecute them and therefore freed them asking them to go away from their territory.

 

In Isaiah 40: 31 we read: ‘Those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They will mount up with wings like the eagle. They shall fly and shall not be tired; they shall walk and not faint’. Eagle is a symbol of strength. In Isaiah 41: 10, the Lord said ‘Fear not for I am with you. Be not dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes I will help you. I will hold you with my righteous right hand’. These are reassuring Words of God that infuse greater spiritual strength in one to be able to withstand the devil or adversaries. In Ephesians 3: 16, Paul psyched the Ephesians not to lose heart in “that HE (God) will grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His spirit in the inner man” During Elijah’s flight away from Jezebel, even during extreme flight, God sent a raven to feed him with two meals which gave him strength lasted him for 40 days and 40 nights without eating. 1 King 19: 8 presented a vivid scenario of how “he arose; and ate and drank and he went in the strength of that food for forty days and forty nights as far as Horeb, the mountain of God”

 

What added up to become spiritual strength are namely, fear of the Lord, serving the Lord in sincerity and in truth; praying without ceasing; putting away of all idols; serving the Lord in the areas one is needed, reading and studying the bible along with memorizing verses for various life’s needs. It is also paramount that quotable quotes from Jesus Christ, David, Peter and Paul as well as many anointed servants of God like Isaiah, Jeremiah with other major and minor Prophets are needed to give a believer spiritual strength

Significance of Number 4 in Creation

Genuine fighting has  God's framework for success

Genuine fighting has God’s framework for success

I am not a numerologist. I never tried to even understand or explore the knowledge because Jesus is all I need and believe. I will not be the only one in this frame of mind. However, it is significant that in certain victorious circumstances number 4 featured prominently.

There are certain events in creation which remained a beacon or a source of guidance towards our understanding of the universal work of God, and more importantly, how we can take cue from there to fashion out a life of obedience to God and doing His holy will. Daniel 11: 32b states “But the people who do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits” Revd. Emmanuel Awowole in his ministration on April 4, 2014 wrote: “Today is 4- 4-14. FOUR is the number of creation: signs, seasons, days and years * FOUR regions of the earth: North, South, East and West * FOUR seasons of the year: Spring, summer, autumn (fall) and winter * FOUR great elements: Water, earth, fire and air * FOUR divisions of the day: Morning, afternoon, evening and midnight * FOUR spheres of suffering: distress, despair, forsaken and destroyed * FOUR mighty men in the life of David risked their lives to serve him 1Sam 23 and Chronicles 11 (NKJV) * FOUR Philistine giants were defeated by David’s men * FOUR miserable comforters in the life of Job * FOUR friends carried a palsy man to Jesus in Mk 2: 1-14 * ‘Loving, sacrifice, dedicated and rich’ – Whatever good things you have enjoyed in any of these things shall be permanent in your life IJN. Any negativity or manipulation through any of these things is nullified in Jesus Name.” Courtesy of gracedunamis.org

From the above consummated work of God, even from creation time, it is of note that God declared “And God saw everything he has made, and behold, it is good” HE, our God has dominion over everything, it is therefore for us to trust him without any shadow of doubt and on top of it, HE is ever prepared to forgive our sins and iniquities, provided we do not feel too big to confess our sins and with penitent heart ask for forgiveness. Trusting Him is an affirmation of our total dependence in Him through Christ our Savior. Psalm 91: 1 says “He that dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty” David played a key role in total dependence on God and the Lord never abandoned him. In conclusion, it is clear that God thrives in orderliness. God is sovereign and has HIS own way of solving our problems for us. The four spheres of suffering applied to Prophet Jeremiah but he endured all and lasted beyond his oppressors.

Spiritual Power

Spiritual power is stronger than any other power. It is invincible.

Spiritual power is stronger than any other power. It is invincible.

Everything spiritual is intangible to the physical eyes except for those who are able to spiritually discern them. It is explicable then that David as a shepherd boy was able to single-handedly kill a lion and a bear that threatened his flock. Spiritual power is essentially for the good of mankind while evil power is out to kill and destroy. There is a clear distinction between spiritual and devilish powers. Another related form of power is the physical power which can be employed for either good or bad cause. Obviously, physical power involves strength to lift, push or pull any heavy object. It includes power to wrestle, box or play games. It also involves burning of calories. Spiritual power concerns transcendental energy that uses words of God by faith or belief to become manifest what physical power cannot get done by any means. The body-builder builds body and power to do or perform greater feats than ordinary men. Every boxing, wrestling and other champions tend to possess such power or energy that must be more than their defeated challengers.

The prerequisites for nourishment, growth and development involve food, training and more of self-denial or endurance and application of self to the purpose one resolved to effect. An apprentice must seek to build capacity to become a professional in the trade he is learning. By the same token, the christian seeking to grow spiritually is required to be dedicated and watch the company he keeps. Such company must be saintly in nature in the sense that the deep must be able to call to the deep, so says the bible. While physical food ensures nourishment for body growth, spiritual food makes ones spiritual nourishment and growth very possible. Spiritual food is made up of reading and studying the words of God as well as memorizing bible passages and emulating exemplary characters in the bible. Spiritual food is meant to sustain the life of a christian and grant him immunity against temptations and evil attacks from all adversaries. The workers of iniquity are comparable to physiological “Free Radicals” that are poised to destroy believer’s spiritual cells. Let it be seen as evil communication that destroys good manners. Bad manners in the spiritual realm is sinful and is capable of incurring God’s wrath.

In the days of Moses  while on Mount Sinai, the people could not wait for God they could not see. They got Aaron to create visible god for them. Their worship of man-made god was abominable to God of Israel who had dealt so wondrously well with them. The rejection angered God. Moses had to plead with God to spare their lives or blot him out of existence. Zacchariah 3: 6 “This is the word of God to Zerubbabel: Not by might nor by power, but by my spirit says the Lord of hosts . Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain” In Acts 1: 8 we see how the power and might of God emboldened the disciples to continue the work Jesus started with them in spite of their low estate where the learned rabbis were. “But you shall receive power when the holy spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me”. Manifestation of God’s power was seen in Stephen for whom it was written in Acts 6: 8 “And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.” For Pharaoh to “Let my people go”, no physical power or prowess could have been able to let the Israelites depart from Egypt.

Focusing on God

 Sin blindfolds man from beholding the glory of God

Sin blindfolds man from beholding the glory of God

One walking or driving through any street in a big city needs to stay focused if he or she is to reach desired destination. The reason is that there are many attractions and distractions such that if one loses focus, one is more likely to miss the road leading to ones destination. Driver that has the GPS stands the chance of arriving at his destination easily provided he stays focused all along. The christian GPS is clearly the fruits of the spirit as recorded in the Bible. This reminds us concerning the children of Israel on arrival in the land of Canaan. To a believer, focusing on God demands obedience and depending on HIM in all areas of life. While the Israelites were in the wilderness, they really focused on God and continuously got all they needed without having to pay a dime, Isaiah 55:1(NKJV). It says: “Ho! Everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat, Yes, come, buy wine and milk, Without money and without price.”

God knows our needs and invites us to avail ourselves with His gracious provisions. Anyone that loses focus may not benefit from Gods provision. This translates into anytime the children of Israel turns their back against their God they lose woefully if not shamefully in battle. As they stayed focused on God in perfect obedience, the walls of Jericho fell not by being mighty in battle but by obeying and following God’s strategies for winning.  Joshua 7: 1-26 (NKJV) reminds us that after the epic victory over Jericho, Israel could not defeat AI that was known to have “few people”.

Achan son of Carmi from the tribe of Judah had stolen accursed items from the battle of Jericho that was  to be destroyed completely. Joshua was alarmed and asked God, “why?”. In response, God said in verse:11 “Israel has sinned and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them. For they have even taken some of the accursed things, and have stolen and deceived, and they have also put it among their own stuff, (verse 12) therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, because they have become doomed to destruction, Neither will I be with you anymore unless you destroy the accursed among you”

The blueprint of focussing on God is traceable to the NINE great attributes of a good christian. Galatian 5: 22-23 as well as in Verse 24 says: “But the fruit of the spirit is love , joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control against such there is no law…….If we live in the spirit let us also walk in the spirit” To lose focus on God is to embrace the work of the flesh which are adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousy, outburst of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresy, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries and the like, Galatians 6: 20-21 (NKJV).

Faithfulness to God Brings Victory

There are so many areas in the bible where God assured man that He would always guide and protect whosoever remains loyal to him. God hates idolatry in the time of the patriarchs, even now world without end. In Psalm 24: 3-5, we read: “Who may ascend into the hills of the Lord? Or who may stand in His Holy place? He who has clean hand and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to idol, nor sworn deceitfully, He shall receive blessing from the Lord, And righteousness from the God of his salvation” (NKJV) This quoted passage lined up with Exodus 20 vs3 “You shall have no other God before me” (NKJV). Looking at the history of the Jews, from the time of their exodus from Egypt and even beyond, they depended on God to fight battles and won all before they acquired weapon technology. During the reign of King Jehoshaphat, he depended on God to the extent that God drew war strategy for him. In it, singers were made to praise God all the way leading the men of valor into battle. As of today, from human angle without consideration for divine touch, that would have ordinarily been considered as crazy. God made the three nations set to attack Jehoshaphat’s kingdom to attack and did destroy themselves one after the other so much that there was no survivor. It was a total liquidation only for Jerusalem and Judah to collect valuables from the dead, II Chronicles 20: 20-25.

The main focus of this post is looking at the Jews while fightin to settle down in the land of Canaan. King Balak of the kingdom of Moab feared that the returning Israelites would attack his kingdom for all kingdoms on the way of the Israelites had been defeated like the King of the Amorites. It was always total annihilation. The fear gripped King Balak so much that he sent to call on Balaam to come and curse the children of Israel. Rather than cursing them, God made Balaam bless them, Number 22 and 23 (NKJV). The story changed in Number 23: 1-12. In verses 1-3, we see that the Israelites abandoned their God: “Now Israel remained in Acacia grove, and the people began to commit harlotry with the women of Moab. They invited the people to the sacrifice of their God, and the people ate and bowed down to their gods. So Israel was joined to Baal of Poer, and the anger of the Lord was aroused against Israel”. God had to pass death sentence by hanging the offenders before the Lord. Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the Priest went into the tent of one of the children of Israel who was bold enough to bring his Midianite woman into the congregation of children of Israel. Phinehas used his javelin to kill both the erring man and his unlawful woman before God stayed action at destroying the children of Israel.

Christians enjoying the grace of God but decided to go into the warm embrace of idol worshippers will sooner or later face the wrath of God. It would be regrettable for a person or country to start going against THE HOLY WILL OF GOD.

Gileadites Defeated Ephraimites : Revisited

The basic background to this situation in the life of the Israelites related to their abandoning the God of Israel that got them out of bondage from Egypt. They all went whoring with the small gods of the people God drove out for them to dwell on the land that was flowing with milk and honey. It was the usual habit of the Israelites that when they were in deep oppression and depression they would always return to God.The Gileadites were under the oppression of the people of Ammon. They lacked a leader who could lead them to war. The Israelites called on God and won HIS favor.

The idea of revisiting an earlier post is to have a critical look into what aided the continued victory of the Gileadites in battles. Judges 11:1-12 gave us the background to the strength of the Gileadites. Jephthah was earlier disowned by his father’s other sons because he was the son of a harlot. They said “You shall have no inheritance in our father;s house, for you are the son of another woman” This forced him to rely on God himself. “Jephthah fled from his brother’s and dwelt in the land of Tob; and worthless men banded together with Jephthah and went out raiding with him”. In this circumstance, Jephthah showed himself as a good leader for him to have been able to train the so-called “worthless men” to become mighty men of valor who fought with courage and finesse. All Israel had confessed their sin to God and discarded all their strange gods and returned the God of their fathers. God decided to have compassion on them but no group had the strong army to fight for them. Jephthah, the rejected member of his father’s house became the only credible leader to lead Israel to battle their enemies. His prowess was comparable to David’s situation in which he had only about 600 men to King Saul’s “three thousand chosen men” 1Samuel 24: 2. David was a very strong leader who underwent tough circumstances but overcame difficulties that beset him as God was with him all along.

Jephthah had God-given power, might and compliance with priestly advice and directives that made him obey God. As a rejected son in his father’s house he placed emphasis on training and development not only in the physical but also in the spiritual. His followers were great men of valor and faith. He possibly would not have fought the Ephramites if they had not dared him on top of earlier occurrence of breaking the code of kinship cooperation. Jephthah tied his fate to God. He paid his vow in the most sorrowful and regrettable manner to seal his triumph over household and other enemies.