Devotional

If It Troubles You, God Wants to Take Care of It!

Many Christians make the mistake of thinking that God is too busy taking care of the “big things” to be interested in the little problems they are facing.

But God is not like that. He is not just God Almighty, He is also your heavenly Father who loves you! To God, whether it’s a new pimple on your face, a sore throat or an aching back, no matter how trivial or commonplace it sounds, if it troubles you, He wants to take care of it!

If, as the Bible says, God bothers to keep track of how many hairs you have on your head, then there is no symptom, no discomfort and no condition in your body that He doesn’t know of or care about. His love for you is all-encompassing, personal and in-depth. There is nothing in your body or life too small that you can’t bring to Him and watch Him take care of!

Devotional

There Is Only One Way

The apostle Paul tells believers who have been born again in Christ that God the Father “has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins” (Col. 1:13–14). Notice that there has been a change of location. You used to be under the power of darkness. But the moment you believed in Jesus, you were moved and placed under the blood of Jesus, where there is perpetual forgiveness of sins.

To understand the total forgiveness of sins, we have to understand the value of the person Who sacrificed Himself on the cross for us. He alone, because He was sinless, could pay for all the sins of every man. When our Lord Jesus died at Calvary, He took all of humanity’s sins with one sacrifice of Himself at the cross. He took the judgment, punishment, and condemnation for all sins upon Himself. That’s the value of the one Man, Jesus. He is an overpayment for all our sins.

Now, does that mean that everyone is automatically forgiven? Of course not! Read today’s scripture carefully. While everyone’s sin is paid for, every individual needs to make a personal decision to receive the forgiveness of all their sins by receiving Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. Jesus is the only way to salvation. There is no other way except through Jesus and His shed blood.

There is no ambivalence in scripture as to how a person becomes a born-again believer in Christ. To be saved, you have to confess with your mouth that Jesus is your Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead. Therefore, anyone who tells you that everyone’s sin is automatically forgiven and that you don’t need to receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior in order to be saved is scripturally inaccurate. Such teachings are heretical and are lies from the pit of hell. There is no salvation without Jesus. There is no forgiveness without the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ. There is no assurance that all our sins have been forgiven without the resurrection of Jesus.

But today, as born-again believers in Christ, there is forgiveness and the amazing assurance that our salvation is secure and we will never be put to shame! This is our reality today—we can enjoy His presence, His righteousness, and His help every day and in every season.

Devotional

The Battle Is Real

Imagine you are in a battlefield and all around you soldiers are being slain. On one side, you see a thousand fall. On the other, ten thousand crumple one by one to the ground. You hear screams as bullets find their targets.

It is a disturbing picture and I thank God that the majority of us have not had to experience the horrors of being in a physical combat zone. But that does not mean that we are not under attack nor does it mean that we do not see death claiming its victims all around us.

We are assaulted daily from all directions by tragic newsflashes, by doctors’ reports, and by attacks of the devil launched at us. And every day, we see casualties around us as we read about people dying in accidents, in attacks, or of diseases. Please understand that I am not in any way suggesting that such occurrences are equivalent to the experiences of those who may have been in wars. What I do want to establish is that believers are in a spiritual war, and we should not be ignorant of the enemy’s tactics.

When the enemy attacks you, do you recognize his weapons? The projectiles he shoots may not come with arrowheads or be filled with gunpowder, but they are no less deadly. His weapons come in the form of crippling thoughts and crushing fears. When you hear about a plane crash and are paralyzed by the thought that your next plane ride might be your last, you have been shot. When you read about a shooting at a concert venue and fear going near one in case the same thing happens to you, a “bullet” has been lodged in your mind.

In this section, I want to teach and equip you to combat these oppressive thoughts. Unfortunately, many believers who may experience these dark thoughts allow them to take root and grow. They water them with worry, fertilize them with anxiety, and allow them to sun for hours in their mind. How? By replaying the bad thoughts over and over again and letting them go on and on like a broken record. As a result, these believers can’t sleep, they suffer from chronic panic attacks, and they might even develop autoimmune and psychosomatic conditions. What begins in the mind can take root in your heart, and can even lead to adverse effects on your physical body. When those negative thoughts come your way, you must not give them time to take root!

Devotional

Are You Mixed Up?

To understand the grace of God, it is essential you understand the differences between the old covenant of law and the new covenant of grace. To help you accelerate your understanding of law and grace, I want to share with you one of my favorite scriptures. I have preached this verse around the world, from Hillsong Conference in Sydney, Australia, to Lakewood Church, in Houston, Texas.

“For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

[John 1:17]”

The law was given through a servant. Grace and truth came through the Son. The law talks about what man ought to be. Grace reveals Who God is. In the first miracle of Moses, he turned water into blood, resulting in death. In the first miracle of grace, Jesus turned water into wine, resulting in life and celebration. The letter (the law) kills, but the Spirit gives life (see 2 Cor. 3:6).

Under the law, God demands righteousness from sinfully bankrupt man. But under grace, God provides righteousness as a gift. Now, which covenant would you like to be under? The answer is obvious!

The truth is, through the cross at Calvary, all who believe in Jesus and acknowledge Him as their Lord and Savior are under the new covenant of grace. Yet today many believers are still living in confusion, and get law and grace all mixed up by holding on to some aspects of the law and some aspects of grace in their Christian beliefs and walk. Jesus said you cannot put new wine into old wineskins. The new wine will ferment and break the wineskins, and you will lose both (see Matt. 9:17). In the same way, you cannot put the new wine of grace into the old wineskin of the law. One will cancel out the other (see Rom. 11:6).

Under the law, God said, “I will by no means clear the guilty, but I will visit their sins to the third and fourth generations” (see Exod. 34:7). But under grace, God says, “I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and lawless deeds I will remember no more” (see Heb. 8:12).

There has been a change! Can you see with absolute high-definition clarity that there has been a radical change and it is all because of Jesus? Choose to live wholly under the new covenant of grace today, where through Christ’s perfect finished work at the cross, you have God’s righteousness as a gift, and God’s own Spirit of life leading you to victory over areas of defeat.

Devotional

Perfect Sacrifice, Complete Forgiveness

You will never be sure that you have God’s unmerited favor if you are not sure if God has forgiven you of your sins. Beloved, I want you to know that your sins are forgiven not according to the riches of your good works, but according to the riches of God’s grace (unmerited favor). All your sins—past, present and future—have been forgiven. Don’t draw a timeline of God’s forgiveness of your sins. There are some Christians who believe that the forgiveness they received spans only from the day they were born to the day they became Christians. From that point onwards, they think that they need to tread very carefully in case they lose their salvation. This belief is simply unscriptural. Colossians 2:13 states clearly that we have been forgiven of all our sins.

Does “all” mean the same thing to you as it does to me? My Bible says that all our sins have been forgiven by Jesus’ one sacrifice on the cross. We have been forgiven once and for all! The high priests in the old covenant had to offer sacrifices for sins daily. But Jesus, our perfect new covenant High Priest, offered the complete, perfect sacrifice “once for all when He offered up Himself” (Hebrews 7:27). On the cross, He took upon Himself all the sins that you will commit in your lifetime, and once for all paid the full price for all your sins. Christ does not need to be crucified again for your future sins. In fact, all your sins were in the future when He died on the cross. So when you received Jesus into your heart, ALL your sins were completely forgiven!

Now that you know that your sin debt has been completely cleared and settled by Jesus on your behalf, don’t expect God to deal with you according to your sins. When something negative happens, don’t imagine that God is coming after you because of what you did in the past. Instead, take God at His Word and expect to enjoy the benefits of the heavy price Jesus paid at the cross for you. We sowed nothing good, but through Jesus, we have reaped every good blessing. That, my friend, is called unmerited favor. And you honor what He has done for you by thanking Him and expecting these blessings to manifest in your life every day.

Morning Devotional

Grace For Parenting

If you are overwhelmed by the responsibilities of being a parent today, I want to encourage you to believe that there is a provision and a grace for parenting. Instead of worrying and being anxious for your children, pray for them to experience God’s wisdom, favor and protection through Jesus Christ.

Before they go to bed at night, or before they leave for school, just lay hands on them and say, “Because you are a Jesus-boy (or Jesus-girl), day by day, you are increasing in the wisdom of God and in favor with God and men! Jesus will cause you to be at the right place at the right time.”

Cast your cares for your children to the Lord. Trust Him for the provision of wisdom to speak words of encouragement and life to them about making good decisions instead of bowing to peer pressure. As you meditate on His promises to bless, protect and equip your children for the challenges of life, know that the Lord has equipped and provided you with the grace to be an excellent parent!

Morning Devotional

Meditate On His Love

I find what Jesus said in Matthew 8:20 so beautiful. Let me tell you why. In the original Greek text, the word “lay” is a very unique Greek word, klino. It is seldom used in the New Testament. The only other place it is used in terms of Jesus resting His head is at the cross. When Jesus hung on the cross and cried, “It is finished,” the Bible says that “He bowed His head, and gave up the ghost” (John 19:30, KJV). The word “bowed” here is the same Greek word klino.

My friend, it was only at the cross that the Son of Man finally found a place to rest His head. Jesus found His rest in redeeming you, in saving you. He found His rest in loving you.

So beloved, feed on Jesus’ love for you. Listen to sermons or sing songs about His love for you. You will be surprised at how strong it will make you. You will become more than a conqueror, not through your love for Him, but through Him who loves you (Romans 8:37)!