Tuesday 1, April 2015
Bible Passage(s): Ephesians 2: 1 - 13
Memory Verse: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.'' Eph 2:8-9
As we enter the month of April today, we enter into the season of Easter. Easter is of great significance to Christians, in that, it symbolizes the authenticity of our faith. As Apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15:14 and 17 ‘… if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty’; and ‘…. if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile;’
Our God and Father, sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, to the world to reconcile it back to Himself by His death on the cross and resurrection as atonement for our sins. This is a show of great love, mercy and forgiveness towards mankind. However, there can be no mercy and forgiveness if grace is not first available. Grace is the forerunner of mercy and forgiveness. Somebody described mercy and grace as follows; ‘Mercy is unearned blessing bestowed by God on an unworthy recipient’ and Grace is ‘unmerited or undeserved favor’. Really, we did not merit nor deserve Christ or His salvation.
The story of the prodigal son as recorded in the book of Luke chapter 15, verses 11 to 24 clearly drives this point home. When we consider the life of the prodigal son, we will see that he moved from the position of being a beloved son to that of an ungrateful child (Verses 11 - 12); and then to living a sinful and riotous life, during which he lost all his inheritance and entered into great deprivation and suffering (verses 13 – 16). However, when he came back to his senses, realizing his sins (verses 17 – 19), he repented and went back home to his father (verses 20 – 21). The father, seeing him in his pitiable state, had compassion on him. He forgave his sins and restored him (verse 22 – 24). The prodigal son received an underserved favor (forgiveness and restoration) from a loving and compassionate father. The father, full of grace, did not count his sin against him casting him out. Rather he forgave and received him back into his bosom.
We see in the Bible that, our God and Father, right from creation, when our fore parents; Adam and Eve sinned, immediately put in place a plan for the restoration of mankind unto Himself. He planned the coming of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, to deliver the grace of salvation to us by His death and resurrection. As such in the month of April, we celebrate the beauty of the grace and mercy which God had bestowed on humanity. As we celebrate, let live in this consciousness, appreciate and celebrate the life and death of our Lord Jesus Christ. We are to realize that our salvation was not bought with money or by our work, but it given to us by grace through faith. It is not of ourselves, nor of our works, but a gift from God. Therefore, in our celebration of Easter, we should not forget the import of this.
However, we can only be a partaker of the grace of forgiveness if, like the prodigal son, we return home to the Father and confess our sins, asking for forgiveness. The opportunity to return is never better than during this season of grace and mercy. So, my reader, if you have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour, the opportunity is available now, more than ever before. Return home to your Father, confess your sins and accept His Son, Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. Then He will receive you into His bosom and you will become His own dear son and daughter.
Therefore if you want to receive the grace of forgiveness and salvation, drop everything now and say this prayer quietly in your heart and the Lord will save and receive you into His Kingdom: Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and that you came to save sinners like me. I confess all my sins today, asking that you forgive me and receive me into the kingdom of your beloved. Come into my heart and change me for good, in Jesus Christ’s name I pray. Amen.
If you sincerely prayed this prayer, you are now born again! You are now a child of God! However, you need to take further steps and get the Bible, read, study and meditate upon it. Ask the Holy Spirit to come into your life and help you to understand and receive greater revelation and insights into the Word of God. Then strive to live a holy life, dedicated to the service of God, who has called you out of darkness into the company of His beloved. Find and begin to attend a Bible believing and teaching church so that you will be prepared to walk the path of faith and grow thereby.
On a final note, I want to address the church of God. In this age and time, the church needs to rededicate itself to holiness and righteousness in pursuit of purpose. As Jesus Christ, our example, fulfilled His purpose in us, let us also run with our purpose, so that we may also fulfill it. The church of God has left its first love to run after money and political power and influence! No wonder the devil is running rampage all over the world right now! From Al Quaeda to ISIS and Boko Haram, right on our shores! Let the church of God return to the Lord and truly do the work of perfecting and equipping the saints for the work of God so that the kingdom of God will come into our world. Then we will see God move in our situations and circumstances. Let the church begin the work of building the saints as a critical mass for the spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ into all nooks and crannies of the world. This is our bounden duty, failing which we will have ourselves to blame.
May the Lord bless and keep you. May He make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you. May the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace, now and forevermore. Amen.
Have a wonderful month.
1. Thank God for the joy of salvation which you have received through faith. Pray that He will help you to work out your salvation. That you will not fail, but will stand perfect and complete in Him.
2. Ask the Lord to help you in your walk of faith. That you will not falter or fail. But that the Holy Spirit will continuously teach you and lead you in all your ways. So that you will run your course with joy and fulfill your testimony.
3. Pray that you will not be the problem, but be a part of the agency to spread the word of God into the world in these end times.
4. Thank the Lord for the peace before and during the elections in Nigeria. Ask Him to preserve the peace as the results are being announced. Pray for His will to be done and that He will enable you to play your part in bringing His will to bear in Nigeria.
5. Ask the Lord to use our newly elected President, in spite of himself, to do His will and bring His counsel to fulfillment in our nation. That he will be a builder and not a demagogue.
This month, the glory of the Lord shall be revealed in your life and all flesh shall see it together. The mouth of the Lord has spoken it; it shall be well with you spirit soul and body in Jesus name.