It’s important to be aware that the only means by which the human race can “escape” the enslavement of Satan, sins and the law of sin and death is Jesus Christ, God’s Son Acts 4:12, Romans 8:2.
The word “escape” is synonymous with “saved or a believer”—that is, a mortal who’s engaged to God. It’s the highest honour we mortals can get and it happens instantaneously by believing in the once for all time sacrifice of Christ Romans 10:9, 1 Peter 3:18. God is not married to any mortal. Paul, the apostle affirmed this truth when He said, I betrothed you to one Husband 2 Corinthians 11:2. In God, there’s coming a due season when believers will put on immortal body and then will come the everlasting marriage Revelation 19: 6-8. This truth brings us to the controversial doctrine of “once saved, always saved or eternal security” which is sadly gaining extensive traction among Christians.
The doctrine has roots in rigid predestination and new age thoughts. For this reason, it’s worth stating that the birth, crucifixion, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ manifested the reality of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world as the Book of life. Whoever believe in or accepts His sacrifice willingly receives Salvation (Is Saved). It has to be willingly because God is not a dictator although He’s sovereign.
How can totally depraved human ever be willing? This mystery is resolved because before Adam and Eve (Our first parents) fell, God had sacrificed His Lamb (Son) from the foundation of the earth (Verse 8 of Revelation 13KJV). Notice that the phrase: “From the foundation of the earth” is in relation to when the Lamb was slain and not when God determined for some people to be Heaven bound and others to damnation.
God foreknew Satan will use predestination to lie against Him therefore, God’s inspired word to His prophets and apostles as written in the scriptures is, whoever—whoever—whoever accepts Salvation is sealed (given) “not locked” — with the Holy Spirit as a deposit … Ephesians 1:13-14, 2 Corinthians 1:22. This is the new birth wherein believers stand by faith.
In a nutshell, the doctrine of “once saved, always saved” states that, ‘once a person has actually received the gift of Salvation, thereafter, no matter how he or she stray after Satan (Verse 11 & 15 of 1 Timothy 5ESV) and keeps practising sin for which Christ died and rose to sanctify believers unto obedience 1 Peter 1: 2, John 8:12, his/her salvation is secured eternally’. Some of its proponents put a proviso, ‘No one who is actually saved can afterwards go back to practising sin’. This doctrine misconstrue the phrase of verse 8 of Ephesians 2 which says, “our Salvation is the gift of God …” to mean that God gives humankinda gift named salvation because of Christ by grace through faith. This is far from the truth!
The truth is, Christ is the gift God gives to humankind as Salvation by grace through faith. In other words, Christ is the Salvation those who believe receive into their hearts and not some imaginary gift apart from Himself. That’s why He’s our Righteousness 1 Corinthians 1:30. Receiving Christ into our hearts by grace through faith is our Salvation (Regeneration, Engagement and Courtship); of which its culmination is marriage (Salvation to the utmost) Hebrews 7:25, 1 Peter 1:9, 13. Notice that intercession is still being made for the engaged people (Bride) to be saved to the utmost. That’s why Christianity is a lively relationship with the living Triune God. Because it’s a relationship and can be walked away from, believers are admonished to remain or abide (don’t disengage or stop beholding Christ’s face) as His purpose and mission to have us as His wife is being accomplished John 15:4, 2 Corinthians 3:18.
Worthy of note is this: Having difficulties in a Courtship, and walking away from the relationship are two different kettle of fish. Walk away, and there’ll be no marriage! Persevere and love will conquer all!
This picture is illustrative of how believers’ safety is only in their abiding in Christ. To come out of the safety of the car is to expose oneself to the roaring lion—it’s suicidal, no doubt! For this reason, we must abide in Him as the Holy Spirit is driving 1 Peter 5:8, Romans 8:14. Our Salvation journey is more about us being led by the Holy Spirit than we making efforts. The pilgrim journey gets sweeter everyday if and only if we accept to be led by the Holy Spirit.
Christ, our salvation and righteousness makes all whom He indwells to desire His sinless perfect life Philippians 2:13. This doesn’t mean we’ve reached “sinless perfect living” hence the need for repentant lifestyle by reason of use. Nonetheless, the desire to live daily in and as Christ by His motivation differentiates those who’re being saved to the utmost from those who choose to crucify Him the second time, the self-righteous and the wicked Hebrews 6:6.
As a people betrothed to Christ, we’re encouraged to walk in the Holy Spirit—growing from glory to glory in righteousness (Christ) Galatians 5:25, Philippians 3:9-10, 1-8. Living daily from the position and enablement of the Holy Spirit is a new way of life to all believers who, hitherto, wallowed in and were accustomed to disobedience and unfaithfulness since we were dead and had “unrevived minds”. As a result, we need renewing (Pruning) as branches in the Vine John 15:5. Although we’re believers, we can stop the almighty God pruning us by us not presenting/submitting ourselves or abiding in His Son Romans 12:1-2. How can any doctrine that deny this truth be right!?
Some may ask, “What happens to a person who gets engaged to Christ and falls dead the next minute”? Well, the question answers its self—the person was still engaged before departing to await his/her immortal body with which to enter the marriage supper in due time. Unfortunately, the concept of “once saved, always saved” says, “Christ is bound to marry those who disengaged Him while they were clothed with their mortal bodies”. This hypothesis goes against both spiritual and natural principles.
By deliberately or unintentionally misinterpreting the truth in 1 Peter 2:24, the “once saved, always saved” precept subtly saps Christians of the grace to live (submit) to God and resist Satan’s temptations especially in the area(s) of besetting sin(s) that war against our souls 1 Peter 2:11. War against our souls—meaning, wooing us to disengage Christ, court another and live to our flesh Romans 8:12, 2 Corinthians 11:3.
In Matthew 16:24, Jesus emphasised that believers’ willing submission is pivotal because God’s imputed righteousness (Christ), does not enslave anyone engaged to Him rather; all who come to Him become bond servants (followers) of righteousness willingly because of His love towards them. Paul’s point in Romans 16:7 and Philemon 1:9 is not that Christ imprisoned them but a reference that the wicked ruling people unjustly imprisoned him and others because they were faithful to their engagement to Christ, their Lord.
Christ brings His sheep into His Kingdom (Himself) full of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Notice the Holy Spirit doesn’t bring righteousness, peace and joy to anyone instead, all who are in Him enjoy these virtues. They give themselves as slaves to something they enjoy and not enslaved by something they don’t desire. That’s why the law of the spirit of life in Christ produces righteous lifestyle only in believers who thirst and hunger for righteousness Matthew 5:6, Romans 8:13b.
Emphasis! God’s imputed righteousness in believers is Christ’s nature and He doesn’t force Himself out of a believer. As a result, a person who has Christ (saved or redeemed) can decide to stop following or abiding in Him, choose to grieve the Holy Spirit and even blaspheme Him. This is the reason we Christians can still disobey the Holy Spirit to forgive one another and continue murdering one another with hatred 1 John 3:15. No believer who hate and refuse to forgive any other person on earth will be married to Christ (saved to the utmost!) Matthew 6:15.
Scriptures outline factors that make it possible for a Christian to fall away and live unperturbed as an unfaithful fiancée. In the main, it’s looking away from Christ, neglecting the voice of the Holy Spirit and not resisting Satan James 4:7. With this in mind, we’re exhorted and admonished, “Abide in me & I in you. … John 15:4” and don’t grieve the Holy Spirit Ephesians 4:30, James 4:7. Why? The Spirit’s work/fruit is cultivated only in Christ and exhibited via the abiding branches (People of the Way), the Church. While our human kind deeds can attract God’s attention, it’s not the basis upon which God puts His Spirit in us. Christ is the basis and it’s the reason God had to send Peter to philanthropic “Cornelius”. The Cornelius’ of this world need Christ to be saved and saved to the utmost.
When a person receive Salvation, he or she becomes a branch that has all it needs (All of God’s resources) because of the Vine and must abide and bear fruit. Any branch that refuses to abide (stay on bearing fruit) in the Vine is cut off. Those that abide are pruned to continue to bear more fruit John 15:2.
Christ is not only the Righteousness of believers—He is our High Priest, Evangelist, Apostle, Prophet, Shepherd and our God. As our High Priest, He understands our weaknesses having tasted all we can ever experience in our pilgrimage especially the weakness of attempting to look away from Grace and suppose we’re still on the journey. Jesus always looked to or abided in His Father and we’re instructed to look to or abide in Christ Jesus (our road map, destination or destiny). He’s always in front of us and this being the case, our “every weight and besetting sin(s)” is/are always behind us. Against this background, we must set aside (overcome)by not looking back or away from Christ. No one can be looking at Christ and sinning at the same time Hebrews 12:1-2, Philippians 3:13, Luke 9:62. You may have noticed how mere religious environments makes us pious. How much more will we be truly godly by looking to or beholding Christ’s face!
As His disciples, we can fall for any sin we imagine or consider more attractive than the Lamb because it’s with our imagination we look to or look away from things James 1:14. Hence, God inspires us to set our imagination on the perfect sinless blood of His Lamb. It’s the centre of His attraction. From His Blood, we have life and draw life. We live above any sin we don’t relish more than Christ, our bridegroom Colossians 2: 6, 2 Peter 1:3-11. However, the fact we can choose to sin, walk away or refuse to abide in Christ highlights the error of “once saved, ever saved”, and nullifies the prideful doctrine of “sinless perfection”. While a static vehicle will not reach its destiny, a moving vehicle eventually will Hosea 6:3, Philippians 3:12, 1 John 3:3.
As God’s beloved children and bride of Christ, He knows when our love is fading away from Him—when our touch of Him grows cold as if someone else controls our very soul. Although He’s patient with us, it doesn’t mean He’s not hurt seeing us flirting with the Anti-Christ. We may still call on His name and be churchy but it doesn’t stop Him knowing we’ve lost our first love for Him—He feels the emptiness inside of us Matthew 24:12, Revelation 2:5. This is why we’re lovingly and extensively exhorted and admonished in the inerrant scripture (Bible) to keep our imagination on the stature of Christ and we’ll not fulfil the sinful instincts fighting to destroy our souls Philippians 4:8-9.
It’s only when we look away from Christ that sinful instincts prevail over us. Therefore, if we get miserable, guilt ridden, depressed, confused, lose our joy and get offended with Christ because we were overtaken or fell into sin, we need to meditate on the thought below:
Was the dominion we had over the sin that has now overtaken us our own righteousness or was it the one we received as a gift by faith in Christ while we looked to Him? If it is the latter, then, we need to get up quickly! —Repent! And Stop enjoying corruption and rottenness. Pig’s pen is not meant for sheep! Get back to His blood and fix your eyes there. If our hearts (eyes) is not divided but single—centred on Christ, His temple on earth (our whole being – Spirit, soul and body) will be full of His light Luke 11:34.
But, if we choose to remain in the miry clay it’s because we’re enjoying sin and not wanting to abide in Him as a branch or fiancée. If we stay there—taken in by sin’s deceitfulness and our hearts harden, it goes fromfalling into sin—to living, practising or walking in sin (Darkness) Hebrews 3:13. In which case, we may be lured into grabbing the ramshackle doctrine of “once saved, always saved”.
Rightly, as stated by J D. Walt, “The need to convince oneself of their eternal security is itself the greatest sign of eternal insecurity” therefore, He continued “Our greatest need isn’t for a doctrine of eternal security but the graciously granted gift of Divine assurance which comes from the Holy Spirit”. We don’t convince ourselves rather, the Holy Spirit does in each believer’s heart Romans 8:16.
Our journey in and with Christ is one way and onward ever with the good luxury and privilege to run to the throne of grace when we’re becoming short-sighted and weary. The Christian soldier’s onward march is in and towards the God of love, mercy, grace and holiness. He is a consuming fire that burns away sins from all who run to Him for mercy, forgiveness and overcoming grace.
Our engagement to Christ is glorious and described as the hope of glory Colossians 1: 27. So, when comes the glory? At the consummation which is the marriage! Those who have this hope in them purify themselves (Are faithful in courtship) as He was and is 1 John 3:3, 1 Peter 1:14-15. Amen!
Therefore, the decision to abide in Christ or not is our choice. God has done and given Christ’s bride everything she needs to live godly, faithfully, justly, mercifully and humbly in this present life and to finish well (Abide to the end) 2 Timothy 4:7. The Lord’s greatest desire is to see us finish well—keep the faith. I trust and pray that you and I will finish well by His grace that’s working in us and with us. Amen!
After Jesus had been incarnated, suffered, died and resurrected on our behalf to make us His betrothed chaste virgin (His body), He sprinkled our consciences with His own blood. He continues to intercede for His body and the impact on her is presently hard to fully comprehend. It’s driving the value of His cross deeper into her being causing her to be faithful, giving Him honor and being full of thanksgiving. It is making her put to death all things serving as a hindrance to His oil (His Spirit) from filling her vessel (soul) always; that is, anything that will stop her from meeting the bridegroom at His Father’s appointed time to enter the marriage supper (consummation).
Is Christ’s ceaseless intercession impacting your heart, soul and body? Saleh!
We are exhorted to intercede for one another because it produces visible results. That being the case how much more is Christ’s intercession on behalf of His body producing real results in His kingdom today. The result is the fruit of the Spirit we the branches are bearing.
We must remember that the flesh is weak and goes to sleep before midnight but, the heavenly gift (Christ’s life) which we possess, never sleeps or slumbers. Therefore, we’re called to worship in spirit and truth—this happens both when we are asleep and awake. If we go to sleep without the spirit in our vessels, then, we must buy oil again to remain in the light, have life and strength. Please note, in the parable of the ten virgins, those who awoke at the sound of the trumpet which announced the visitation of the bridegroom who needed to go and buy oil were described as foolish because they did not learn the lesson from the ants as advised by the Spirit Proverbs 30:25; 6:6-11. How many times the Holy Spirit must have prompted the ten virgins but the five foolish shunned the warning that their oil or measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ was lacking in their souls, thus they grieved the Spirit Ephesians 4:30, 1 Thessalonians 5:23. Paul’s emphasis in verse 30 of Ephesians 4 and verse 23 of 1 Thessalonians 5, underscores the point that we can’t save ourselves Galatians 3:11. Therefore, the Holy Spirit that has started us in Ephesians 2:8-9 is the only One who can bring us into the end of our faith; the salvation of our soul 1 Peter 1:9. We have been saved and shall be saved if we grieve not the Holy Spirit.
The summer given to man is fast coming to an end, the winter is almost here and it will be quickly followed by the midnight that will separate the wise from the foolish, the lazy from the diligent, men from the brethren, sheep from the goats Matt 25:32, Romans 11:21, Revelation 3:20-22. Dear believer, open your soul to His knock or prompting and buy oil now. Please read Hebrews 3:1-19 before continuing with the article.
A question to ponder is, “Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? Galatians 3:3.
The flesh does not obey the Spirit—Indeed, it cannot! So, we must show ourselves as wise now and “put our flesh under submission” by faith in obedience to the Holy Spirit and resist the devil James 4:7, Romans 8:9-39. Please note, while neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, cannot separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord verse 38-39, unbelief, disobedience or grieving the Holy Spirit can. Saleh!
The parable of the ten virgins in Matthew 25 is a big encouragement to the kingdom of Christ. This is one of the deepest parables in the scriptures. In it, the kingdom of God is likened to the ten virgins. These virgins had one focus, which is, to meet the bridegroom. All the ambitions, needs and wants they had ever pursued narrowed down to this one destiny. Every other thing became a shadow. To inherit their destiny, they all took their lamps. At this point, the gospel that mattered is the gospel of buying oil and filling the vessel. It is the gospel of the Kingdom of the Bridegroom. It is the end time gospel that started after the resurrection of Christ. The gospel of the fulfillment of ambitions is not even secondary but useless and worthless. Dear reader, go for the gospel of His Kingdom that is within you.
Now, we note that the kingdom is one—so, it is not a comparison of two kingdoms but a narrative of the event within one kingdom. In other words, the ten virgins are of one kingdom with one bridegroom or blessing as their focus.
The virgins knew that they needed lamps and oil. They were all aware that they were responsible for taking their lamps that had been provided for them and also, to take enough oil made available to them and to hold unto it firmly till they unite with the bridegroom. Eventually, the time to meet with the bridegroom came and what was hidden became exposed. Five of the ten virgins were foolish (unwise) because they did not walk in the wisdom of virgins which is, buy oil without money when the Holy Spirit prompts or instructs to do so. Meanwhile, the other five listened to the Spirit and kept in step with Him—buying oil whenever the vibrancy of the Spirit in their soul (vessel) needed fanning. The ten virgins all recognized the joyful announcement of the spirit as it made attractive music to their ears, but to join in the spiritual songs, dance and festivity (not Christmas), their vessels needed to have been clothed with Christ Romans 13:14. Note carefully that verse 14 of Romans 13 is addressed to a people who already have Ephesians 2:8-9 blessing.
So then, virgins can walk as if they are not virgins and lose the benefit (the blessing Proverbs 10:22) entrusted to them. Virgins must walk as wise or chaste virgins till they are married to the bridegroom. The ten virgins were only betrothed to the bridegroom before that glorious day of consummation. John the apostle admonished those engaged to the bridegroom thus, “Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us 1 John 3:24, Romans 8:14, Ephesians 4:30. The Holy Spirit is what enables the word to shine light on our path (soul); without Him (Oil) we will be empty and none of His. We will be foolish virgins—virgins that have no light and life when it is most needed.
After Paul the apostle had worked tirelessly not to “plant churches” but to encourage those engaged to Christ as virgins, he admonished them, “For I feel a divine jealousy for you, since I betrothed you to one husband, to present you as a pure virgin to Christ. But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ 2 Corinthians 11:2-3. What is Paul’s concern for the virgins? It is unfaithfulness to the Christ. How can it happen? By them permitting for their thoughts (mind or soul) to be filled by another Jesus and spirit. Paul had great grace in understanding the mystery of God. He understood that man’s soul can’t be without a covering, a Lord, Apostle, Prophet, Shepherd and High Priest. So, he was concerned that that of the virgins betrothed to the Christ by the Apostolic Spirit of Christ in him were not deceived, seduced and married to or have “another (false) apostle, prophet, shepherd and high priest (the devil who is the antichrist).
A pure or chaste virgin is a wise virgin or remnant that keeps her thought and imagination on the Spirit and not on the flesh. Those whose minds (souls) are renewed and being renewed by the oil from their lamps.
The body of Christ as a virgin must be zealous for good works—meaning, being wise or pure. Here, good works are not our self righteousness (struggling to keep the laws of commandment) but, our obedience to the workings of the Holy Spirit in us and with us. This is obedience proceeding from the Spirit of life given to us in Christ Titus 2:14, Hebrews 9:14, 1 Corinthians 13:12. Paul says, the is a dimension of Christ at work in all who are in Christ and Christ in them—when, they eventually see Christ face to face, then, they will know something of Christ measure they have had all along that they did not know. This hope to eventually find out the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ God has worked in us that we cannot comprehend at the moment, gives the wise virgins dominion over sin Romans 6:14. Not even one of the sins in Galatians 5:19-21 shall have victory over you. Do you believe? Dare to believe Mark 9:23
1 John 3:1-2 describes firmly the truth that we are now betrothed which is our gift from God—the heavenly gift Hebrews 6:4. Consequently, our ceaseless zeal should be 1 John 3:3 as admonished. It is categorical not optional. This admonition to be wise is not a catalogue of things we don’t do and do but, a consistent dependency on the leading of the Spirit. It is a call of faith—to look unto Christ.
Doubtless, man on earth is sailing through unprecedented spiritual darkness IN THIS AGE. It is not strange to those acquainted with their bible. The things prophesied by the prophets of God in the Old Testament as shadows are all finding their reality in Christ since His birth, death and resurrection as the King of glory, Lord of the heavens and the earth.
The economic crisis in the world today is child’s play compared to the spiritual crisis. It is no surprise that both are occurring almost simultaneously.
To inflict partial blindness to man, his attention must be directed away from what you don’t want him to see by focusing him on another thing. In this time, like never before, Church organizations are powerfully focusing man’s attention on materialism. The American Heritage Dictionary defines materialism as “The theory or attitude that physical well-being and worldly possessions constitute the greatest good and highest value in life.” How sad!
Except for benefit of hind-sight, some of us who refer to Job favorably would not. Many “powerful ministers” of God and those following their “mandate” still can’t get the lesson the Almighty God is teaching mankind—especially His people (the Church).
The lesson is crystal clear. That which is physical is temporal and that which is spiritual is eternal. What are the implications?
*The spiritual doesn’t die!
*The spiritual is superior to the physical which passes away like grass—blown away by the wind at God’s command. In the light of this, who does God consider as wise? The answer is obvious.
It is certainly not those with doctorate degrees, not those who know how to magnate cash, not the diplomat and not the minister who has more followers than Christ or who knows how to maintain his or her followers by making sure none escapes.
Rather, it is those who refuse to depart from the fear of the Lord! Those who truly recognize the Treasure the grace of God and faith has deposited inside them freely. Those who know that a farmyard is better than a barn and so are willing to sell the barn to purchase the farmyard.
It is those who know the difference between clay and God’s surpassing power that resides in the clay and give thanks and glory to Him who lives forever. It is those desiring to live forever with the Father of light and as such, affliction never crushes them neither does perplexity leave them in a state of despair.
It is those that persecution never discourages but rather leads them to remember that Christ never forsakes them. Those who are never surprised that they’re struck down because they know they can never be destroyed. So, they cling to the resurrection mystery and power working in them knowing THAT THROUGH IT ALONE, is the life of Christ Jesus produced in them; a life that serves as a blessing to many as are being saved.
Truly, the times are dark and the mighty is falling! The first are fast becoming the last—those who claim to love Christ are treating Him and His sheep most wickedly. Those who promised Jesus that they will be His temple are permitting devil’s to inhabit the same temple they turned over to Him 1 Cor 6:19.
When materialism takes over any individual or gathering of the Church, blindness takes them over. When blindness takes over, the sad signs are; much about Jesus, talk of love, grace, peace, prosperity, prayer and holiness without any being present. Oh! How you and I must be sound in our judgement of these things and be sober minded! The benefit of sound judgment and soberness over these matters will surely lead us all to repentance and prayer 1 Pet 4:7.
Peter the Apostle said, ” the end of all things are at hand” can you and I appreciate what the Holy Spirit is saying to us as part of Christ’ body—the things that are temporal are closing down while, the Thing that is of God is exalted. Therefore, those associated with the Thing exalted are also being exalted or glorified Rom 8:17.
Now, because of the false doctrine that, ” poverty enhances godliness”, I’ll like to state that the suffering referenced in verse 17 of Romans 8 has nothing to do with lack of money though Paul suffered lack of money often times. The clues of how he solved money issues are found in Philippians 4:11-13 and Acts 18:3.
Poverty or riches have no power to enhance or deter godliness except the soul is sold to either rather than to Jesus Christ Acts 4:12.
Physical poverty and riches can only stop us from doing the many things WE WANT TO DO FOR GOD but, they can’t stop God from doing the things He wishes to do in us and through us. Selah
It is important for us to know that materialism is not just about money—it includes “Health & wealth, purpose & power, & getting the most out of this present life as Capt. George Perezputs it in his tweet of May 8, 2012, it has become the drawing cards of contemporary Christianity”. Observe the obsession with leadership or wanting to lead and encouragement to be a leader in modern Christianity. Note the focus; then go and STUDY the book of Acts and the deception upon us will be clear.
The Spirit of God says to all who have ears “hear what the Spirit says to the gathering of His people (Churches).
Refuse to be dominated and controlled by the mind set of, “let’s build a kingdom for God on earth”. The right thing is, “lets open up His temple 1 Cor 6:19, Matt 22:37-40 for Him—after-all, He purchased it with His own blood”. We must refuse for anything—not our jobs, wives and husbands, children, friends or parents, sin or Satan to dominate our thoughts Matt 6:21. Let it be Christ dominating and controlling us while we’re busy with the affairs we engage in—in this present temporal life that is fast passing away.
This year, a beloved brother and a dear friend of mine (Patrick Njoku) whom I believed will be with us on earth for many years to come was brutally murdered. I was gripped with sorrow and wept like a child—but, my Saviour and Lord Christ Jesus comforted me by the Holy Spirit and set me loose to a fresh joy, hope and strength. The earthly or temporal business God sent the brother to do on earth suddenly has closed down—indeed, all things temporal are fast closing down.
Therefore, we’re persuaded by the Holy Spirit to give more attention to the things that will never close down. Set not your affection on treasures that close down. Set your heart on the Treasure that remains forever.
Phil Driscoll puts it like this in His song, “Christ remains“. Through every chaos and storm, Christ still remains. What does He remain doing? Watching over His sheep in life and in sleep! What shall we say concerning such a Messiah but to call Him Immanuel. Amen
God has told us that, “Even our ability to prophesy His word, speak in tongues and teach it which is only in part will pass away” much less our varied mundane abilities and possessions.
Only Love will stand and those inside Love because Love has no end 1 John 4:8, 1 Cor 13:8-9, 13. Paul tells us, ‘ that childish ways are associated with children but, the mature give it up’. Children think temporally but the mature look into the future knowing that better things lie ahead. Things that God knows we don’t and it causes the matured to always look to the face of Christ Who only, is the revelation of God’s wonderful purpose.
Wherever God is there is love—and where love is, there is no selfish ambition! Where there is selfish ambition, Love can’t be found there—what is found is every manner of evil! By this, a wise person will judge himself or herself and their environment James 3:16.
The aim of this post is to call your mind to meditate upon Christ not some days but all the days of your life. May the grace and word of Christ cause an increasing measure of this flame in me, in you and ultimately in His Church. Amen
If superstores are posting profit and growth amid the present economic upheaval, those that are heaven bound can grow too in the stature of Christ amid the spiritual darkness. This is the ultimate purpose of God for His Church.
The last days speak about the early days—simply put, they reveal what has been or concealed in the early days Eccl 1:9-10, Luke 12:2-3NLT. For this reason, the last days are no different from the early days except, that the force of evil that has been working undercurrent is now working overtly with such onslaught and affecting people which hitherto, it had not gained power over. This is creating a visible rampant evil on a scale that will keep astounding man.
In these times, the mountain of the Lord’s house (the Spirit of Christ in His body) will be exalted above all mountains (the devil and the prophet he uses to deceive) and the hills (devils) Isaiah 2:2. Why? Well, God loves man and the evils of the devil do not affect Him. So, His light shines ever brighter in darkness to give light and life to those crying out for light. It’s a time, when the song below will be a daily cry of His body.
We place you on the highest place For you are the great High Priest We place you far above all else, all else; And we come to you And worship at your feet
The deadly forces that saturate the atmosphere seeking abode in bodies (temples) will create inability to love and perpetuate love on the earth. It will be extremely difficult to love because man is fast approaching his (man) fullness. Man’s love is not in God! Actually, the love man has in himself is evil. If given room; it exhibits Gal 5:19-21, Col 3:5-9NLT which are the fruits of devils. The only way to deal with it is to put it to death. A summary of the things to put to death are; desire for power, money and sex. But, the problem is this; these three things are what man lives his life for on earth. Man cannot, without transformation, live any differently.
So, who will help man with this transformation that will change man’s heart and consequently his lifestyle from being governed by these three monstrous evil forces? Obviously, it is not religion, which has failed woefully not to talk of its politics. Yet, we are expressly told that the mountain of God (the Creator of the world and mankind will be exalted in the midst of the earth). How?
We find the answer in the prophecy in Psalm 85:10-11NKJV. Because of the awesome grace of God, the salvation of God has come near to all who fear or reverence God. What does it mean to reverence God? It is not to turn to folly because the foolish always say in their heart, “there is no God” meaning, there is no love. And when man assures himself that there is no love, man becomes deadly.
Let’s think of it, when man believes that his fellow man hates him and is plotting his destruction, his next natural instinct is to destroy his fellow man first. This is what the end times are all about—time when man has seen it all—that man is full of evil. Senseless murder has characterized the experience of man. Hypocrisy is at its apex with all religions Luke 12:1. Religion itself has increasingly become a weapon not just for mass destruction but also, used secretly by religions to lure one another towards destructive behavior as to appear better than one another. It all boils down to the devil and the prophet he uses to deceive man to live for—power, money and sex (a striving after wind).
To reverence God is to have love. What or Who is love? Love is the Spirit of God, the Spirit that works in the Truth. The Truth which, transforms or germinates righteousness (God’s will) or its fruit in the earth Gal 5:22-24.
In 2 Tim 3:1-5, the Spirit of the Creator—that is, the Holy Spirit says, “many a man will love everything except God” paraphrased. Verse 5 is remarkable, note what it says, “having a form of reverence for God or, a seemingly love but not God’s kind” paraphrased. When man lives for power, money and sex, he defends himself by saying, “we must not let our lives waste, and we must make success out of it”. To make “success”, is more important than seeking “good success or possessing the soul” (Luke 21:19NLT, Mark 8:36) so, if pursuing “good success” challenges, “our making it here and now”, to be wise, we choose the “now success or possessing the world” which we can see with our eyes, feel and touch. That is to say, sensuality is better and more real than God (Love).
Therefore, the mountain of God is causing the Lord’s house (body of Christ or the remnant of God) by miraculous deliverance to see God as more real and better than sensuality. This is the mount that God says, “He will exalt above other mountains”. In these last days, the remnant or the body of Christ (not church organizations), will live in mercy and truth, in righteousness and peace which is coming down from heaven because of the slain Lamb. The Lamb of God that sprung from the earth or resurrected is drawing all peoples irrespective of race, religion, power, economic or sexual orientation to Himself. What is being said is this, it is time for man to abandon who he is (hater of God) and truly accept the gift God has offered for man and is still offering to man.
Man is increasingly seeing God as the one to blame for mankind woes. So then, we want to take control of Him and control Him. That isn’t going to happen! We (man), must humble ourselves before the almighty or we die!
The end times or last days is a time man is brought to a high awareness that he is not in control of the world and the world cannot satisfy man. All the wars man has ever fought and will ever fight has not and will not compare to that which is ongoing now more than ever before in the realms of the spirit.
So, God is shinning His light ever brighter that it might attract and lead YOU and I to His secret pavilion. All who refuse His pavilion will grow in the pursuit of power, money and sex unavoidably. It does not mean anyone person will be swallowed by all three, though it is a possibility but, the Spirit expressly says in 1 Tim 3:1 & 4 that, “those will be lovers of self and haters of God” paraphrased.
We are in a time when the love of many is waxing cold!! Love is being reciprocated with senseless and rampant evil. How to please man has become a puzzle! Evil is sincerely seen as good and good as evil. Man’s focus for progress has seized him so much so that he doesn’t care about the source from which it is achieved.
Anything or person who gives progress, advancement, moving forward, maintains man’s reputation or helps him stay on his high horse becomes the god who deserves man’s worship.
If you and I examine ourselves to discover what consumes our thoughts in the day and at night, we’ll immediately discover if gods or God is the person we’re with. Those with God, their mind is increasingly set on eternal things while using earthly things (because they are not of the world John 17:16) while those with gods, their minds are increasing set on the earth so much, even when eternal things come to their minds, it is examined as to how it could be used to accomplish the earthy (because they are of the world John 8:23) See Rom 8:5.
Those who worship in spirit and truth (those with God) are increasingly finding grace to love their spouse against all odds as God commanded while those being caught with the merciless deadly spirit of the time are increasingly hating their spouse and thinking to break their vows to God. Those who hate their spouses or even their enemies hate the bride of Christ. Those who truly love Christ’s bride can love their enemies and spouses—it is easier by far! For, with the spirit nothing is impossible. It enables those He indwells to do all things Heb 4:16, Luke 1:37.
These last days are times when men who truly have God will take on women as wives, show them the love of Christ, cherish and care for them as Christ cares for His bride. And, women who truly have Christ will take on men as husbands showing them Christ’s love, submission and help. We are speaking about sincere intimacy in marriage which glorifies God. An intimacy learnt from that which we have with Christ.
The end time war is a battle of love. Will you love self, things, the devil or God? It is only through loving God that man can learn to submit self (Matt 22:37, Rom 12:1-2), use things properly and proportionately seeing them as only temporary. When the gospel is proclaimed, it ALWAYS orders God’s scale of preference rightly no matter the topic taught. See 1 Cor 15: 1-58.
If you harbor bitterness for anyone with or without a reason, now is the time to save your life— repent and forgive, being as wise as a serpent but harmless as a dove (Phil 2:12). Don’t do lovely things to authenticate your love rather, let the love in your heart authenticate the lovely things you do (1 Cor 13:3).
We are in a time when praise and worship will completely cease to be an invocation and turn to entertainment. A time when the uncompromisingly righteous will remain so and the lovers of self will rather die than repent. Therefore, let no one deceive you with false alerts of peace.
Many anti-Christs are with us now. The sign is this, false teachers and prophets who ALWAYS reverse the order of God’s scale of preference are now reigning. They can’t help but to prophesy lies no matter how hard they try because the devil ensures it. They entice the saints saying, “rise up now, we’re going to take over this present world and reign as governors, heads of leading industries, become millionaires and billionaires, heads of states (not presidents since no one will elect them and their world-wide congregation are not big enough to give them majority vote). They say, don’t let your dream die the death, you’re destined for greatness! Pluck peace to yourself! Meanwhile, they don’t understand the meaning of destiny and the people who are earnestly wanting to pluck greatness and peace grossly lack any INTIMACY with the Great I Am neither do they seek diligently the Prince of peace who gives peace in the heart, in the home and in His ministry in the lives of those He assigns to take His great words and peace to the world. When God speaks to His house, He turns His people’s heart away from these distractions.
Anyone who is in darkness is being held captive by the devil wrongly because the price for your freedom has been paid by Christ’s sacrificial death and resurrection. Therefore, cry out loud to Him for help and you shall be saved Matt 4:16-17. The end times are times when all nations, peoples of all religions are to abandon graven images and flow to Him (the Spirit of Christ).
Is Christ alive in you?! Is His measure growing in you?! The end time is a time of fanning! Let the degree of glory to which the Spirit of Christ has worked in and brought you to radiate His presence inviting those you go to and those that come to you to think upon Christ Jesus 2 Cor 3:18, Luke 9:6, Acts 28:23-24, 4:12.
Get ready to go to those God will send you to to preach the gospel and be prepared to receive those that God is drawing to Christ who need to hear His words that will convince them to believe in Christ and receive true regeneration.
Beautiful times has come to man on the earth in the midst of gross darkness and God’s wrath will soon follow. Therefore, every man must escape to the pavilion of God on their knees, set their hearts to meditation on the word of God and obedience to His word to love Him and fellow men.
John 10:10a, highlights the tactics the devil impores in an attempt to achieve his aim. The tactics are, “to steal, kill and destroy” but, we are not to let him succeed 1 Pet 5:8- 9NLT. However, if we are honest, he succeeds often times with his mischief concerning the things we own that are temporal or perishable e.g., ill health, death of our loved ones, divorces, failures of various kinds etc. The boat Paul the Apostle was travelling in was destroyed Acts 27:22 and eventually he was killed by the hands of wicked people as were Peter, Stephen and others. But, these things are not what matters the most in believers lives. He steals, and kills and destroys but, see Matt 10:28NLT.
What does the devil really intend to achieve by stealing, killing and destroying given that believers in Christ are admonished in the scriptures to hold loosely (not carelessly) to perishable things including their mortal life? Mark 8:35, Luke 12:15, 17:33. The rendition of these passages ties our earthly possessions to our mortal lives—that’s to say, they’re intertwined. It’s somewhat scary when examined closely. It means that, no matter how much we read the bible, fast and pray, the loss of material possessions can affect our mortal lives to the extent of threatening our incorruptible life if we’ve not been detached from them in our souls! This intertwinement sheds light on why we must surrender our earthly possessions at God’s feet just as we’ve done with our lives; and bless Him as we’re prompted in our hearts. All our earthly possessions are gotten with the life and grace he has given to us and the Spirit of grace is the spirit of generosity.
Therefore, the more grace we get, the more our minds are circumcised, renewed and devoted—resulting to us becoming more generous (more willing to and actually parting with temporal things whether with joy or pain). And we can be at peace even when the devil steals from us. So, the worship of God involves not just giving of ourselves but also, our time, money or produce (fruit of our labour). Those who practice the Old Testament now, give as those under the law (their choice) while those in the New Testament now, give as those under grace.
To scripturally answer the question as to the aim of the devil in destroying the perishable possessions of believers, we need to contrast it with the core of what Jesus came to give to those who will believe in Him—see John 10:10b. We recognize that he also destroys the possessions of those who’re not believers. He does it in order to keep them blinded, unconcerned about their souls, occupied only with the affairs of this present life and possibly grieve their spirit to force them to exhibit his nature of cruelty, bitterness, hatred, and jealousy towards others. And even murder and suicide. Also, to prompt them to worship him for protection—unwise move! Seeking protection from the one whose nature is to steal, kill and destroy.
But, for believers, much more than trying to resurrect their sinful desires which belonged to their Old nature Eph 2:3 that has died and buried with Christ, he seeks to rob them of the very Life of Christ which is their hope of glory 1 Col 1:27.
While it is indisputable that God protects the life and possessions of believers Job 1:10, we know that their properties can be destroyed and they can even be killed irrespective of them having received life in abundance from Christ Jesus. When this happens, God does not consider it that the devil has accomplished anything significant and this should be the attitude of all who believe in the gospel. This is the maturity God is calling all believers to!
The thing that is valuable in a believer’s life in God’s sight is what the devil is targeting by coming to steal, kill and destroy. And it’s the Life, yes; the abundant life of God that Christ came to give man.
Job’s story sheds light on this. Unfortunately, to Job’s wife, like many of us today, she equated “God’s life” in her husband as a mere thing not worth fighting for with all he has got and even with his very own life Job 2:9. Everyone who shares in Job’s wife’s low view of God’s life will have nothing but empty or fair weather Christianity which is rampant today! The devil seems to know the value of this “Treasure of God” in us better than many of us. And if this remains the case, our worship will remain a mere religion which is earth bound 1 Cor 15:19. This explains the attractive prosperity false gospel derailing multitudes today!
The devil wanted to use stealing, killing and destroying of Job’s physical possessions and his temporal body to reach his immortal life or Faith (life of God) in him. And, the devil has not changed his tactics and will not! Ouronly safeguard is to love Christ above all else Matt 10:37-38.
So, how much value do YOU place on this “Treasure” you’ve freely received? Eph 2:8, 2 Cor 4:7. Hold your answer in your heart with great humility and if there is need to repent, let us do so and go to the throne of grace with a fresh determination to bear His yoke and enjoy His light. We need to constantly remind ourselves that, though our salvation has been freely given, its cost to God is staggering—He paid for you and me with His blood. In economics, we say, “The cost of a thing indicates its value” Selah!
If indeed, you have the Treasure (Christ), remain or abide in and with Him no matter what comes your way. The Faith is not for getting things though He gives us things— His core purpose is to secure and lead we believers back safely to our creator. But, be aware! Some will fail to return back home (Heaven) but will lose their way or stray away and end in the prison designed for Satan and his cohorts. God preserves but we must persevere to the end of our mortal lives or till Christ’s return. The grace has been given to all believers and more is readily available at His throne of mercy and grace for when we’re in need.
So, no one should dare treat God like a rag because of their belief in “once saved, forever saved.” Satan entered Judas at some point John 13:27 and if you think it’s an isolated case, note that he also entered Ananias at some point Acts 5:3 and read carefully 1 Tim 5:11-12 & 15. These people mentioned, were they not believers in Christ?
This whole journey of salvation starts as a gift and will end only as a gift.
But, as a people given a gift, if only we’ll treasure Him as nearly as we carefully treasure our temporal lives and possessions, His abundant life will stop being just something to read in the pages of His book (bible) but, indeed, it’ll be His rich life to be tasted. It is in understanding and participating or experiencing all the good things (imperishable and invisible divine nature) wehavein Christ that we come to place Him in the highest place in our lives Philemon 1:6NLT. In it, we become immovable and always abounding in His work wherever we are.
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'” Rev 3:22, Isa 55:1-13.
Persevere and hold on to the faith till the end! Heb 12:2NLT.