MY YEAR OF BOUNTIFUL SOWING AND BOUNTIFUL REAPING

II Corinthians 9:6

Pastor Julius Oladiran OgunkolaThese days, seed sowing and tithing have become subjects of controversies in the print and social media. Notwithstanding, the stand point of “Grace Bible Mission” is that church must teach the truth and must not shy away from kingdom’s principle for fear of having the intentions misrepresented. Pastors are not the author of the Bible and should not keep kingdom’s truth away from people; denying them the opportunity of being blessed. Though, one is aware that this particular teaching has been grossly abused in certain regards, be not deceived, God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that he also reaps – Galatians 6:7. However, Genesis 26 presupposes that sowing had become part of Isaac – drought or no drought. It was not the seed that he sowed in the past that rescued him, it was the one that he sowed during famine that did ....Click here for more

Daily Devotional

For the Week: 8 th - 14 th April 2019


8th Apr.

Topic: PHILIP PREACHES IN SAMARIA

Text: Acts 8:4-8

“Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ.” V. 5 KJV.

In today’s passage, Philip as a missionary knew his aim in the city of Samaria. He pursued it vigorously. The task of evangelism involves individual responsibility and commitment. No one can exist without a purpose. Do we have to suspend soul-winning because of its hazards? “God forbid” says Paul. Everybody experiences problems daily in whatever vocation he finds himself. Christ has not promised us a problem-free life, but He assures us that He has overcome for us. Try this today: Tell someone about Christ. Be concerned about the fate of the unsaved. Remember that you are saved today because somebody brought the gospel to you. Imagine how God depends on you too to carry His words to the unreached. Paul said “I am finished if I refuse to preach the gospel.” Can we write the same about you? You are not alone; God is with you. He wants you to go out and show the world the hope that is in Christ.

Emphasis:

The persecution of the church always lead to the expansion of God’s Kingdom when His children faithfully face it.

Prayer:

Almighty God, rekindle in my heart, the passion for souls that the redemption message thrives through me, even in the face of oppositions.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

I Kings 7- 9
9th Apr.

Topic: SIMON THE MAGICIAN

Text: Acts 8:9-13

“But there was a certain man, called Simon, which before time in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria ...” V. 9 KJV.

The art of magic is sorcery and evil. Little wonder the people of Samaria feared Simon - the sorcerer! His magic power made the people stand in awe of his super-natural powers. But Philip preached about the true power in the name of Jesus, to the people of Samaria. The people believed and were baptized. Simon also heard the gospel and observed the signs and great miracles performed by Phillip. He believed and was baptized (v.13). However, it was observed later that his motive was selfish. Today, many people confess to believe in Jesus Christ and are even baptized. However, the way they live their lives seems to reveal that they are only sincere to a point, for their profession is not based on true repentance. There is always a hunger in man craving for a “deliverer.” Believers in Christ must present them with a true salvation message and guide them to respond with sincerity, as the Holy Spirit opens their hearts.

Emphasis:

As you preach the gospel, and people come to Christ, help them to be sure they have a genuine salvation experience.

Prayer:

Pray today that the Lord bless those who witness Christ to the unsaved, with discerning spirit, that those who come to Jesus be firmly established in faith.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

I Kings 10 -12
10th Apr.

Topic: PETER CONFRONTS SIMON THE MAGICIAN

Text:Acts 8:14-25

“Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money!” V. 20 NIV.

Yes, Simon accepted Christ, but his old habits have not died. What about you? Simon also wanted to be in the forefront of missionary work. He needed power! Again, what about you? This is what majority seek today for self-aggrandizement. No doubt many believers are zealous. They desire power, but is it a genuine desire? Is it not just to show-off? It is unfortunate that some ministers of God crave for power as the end itself, rather than the means to an end. Remember that Jesus said: “Many will say to me on that day, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name … Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you!” Simon is bound over to the judgment of God by the guilt of sin, and bound under the dominion of Satan, by the power of sin. Simon hypocrisy was discovered in his request (v.19). Simon was ambitious to have the power and honour of the apostle, but not desiring to have the spirit and disposition of a Christian. He was more desirous to gain honour to himself than to do good to others. If all the above describe your condition you need to be delivered and be saved. Otherwise, help out those who are like Simon around you.

Emphasis:

Christians, in whatever they do should always seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.

Prayer:

Pray today for spiritual deliverance of someone you know that is operating in the spiritual realm of Simon the sorcerer.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

I Kings 13 - 15
11th Apr.

Topic: PHILIP AND THE ETHIOPIAN EUNUCH

Text: Acts 8:26-31

“Then the Spirit said unto Philip, go near, and join thyself to this chariot.” V. 29 KJV.

How do we determine when and where to share the gospel today? How do we have people who are receptive to the message? There are many ways through which God talks to His children. Many of us Christians receive these messages and pretend as if God has not spoken. Why? In most cases, because we do not want to answer the call. May be because it is not convenient for us or because no monetary reward is attached. As Christians, are we bold enough to go to wherever the Holy Spirit leads us? Philip’s time was spent in Samaria It was time to move. An angel told Philip where to go to find a receptive person with whom to share the gospel. Not by his own plan or the apostles’ roster, but by the leading of the Holy Spirit. What a privilege the apostles enjoyed as they yielded themselves to His service! The Ethiopian Eunuch was returning from a holy pilgrimage to worship in Jerusalem, but he had never encountered the Lord Jesus. His spiritual need was met through the missionary work of Philip. Beloved, there are many people who are looking for God in wrong places. Go out and show them Christ, the way.

Emphasis:

Be sensitive and obedient to the Holy Spirit that your evangelistic outreach may be fruitful.

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, as I go out today, help me to heed the nudging of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

I Kings 16 - 18
12th Apr.

Topic: THOSE EXCLUDED FROM THE CONGREGATION

Text: Deuteronomy 23:1-7

“A man with crushed testicles or part of his sex organs cut off…If a man’s parents were not legally married, then they may not join with the men of Israel to worship the Lord.” V. 1, 2 (ETRV)

Today’s devotional passage is thought provoking! “Entering into the congregation of the Lord” is here forbidden to eunuchs and to bastards, Ammonites and Moabites forever, but to Edomites and Egyptians only till the third generation. God’s provision here is made for the preservation of His purity and honour, and by extension, of the families of Israel and others with whom He has a covenant relationship. The exclusion reasons vary from issues of idolatry (vs. 1, 2), and hostility against God’s people (vs. 3, 4a). However, the exclusion order is relaxed in the case of the Egyptians because, though they harmed Israel greatly at the last, they in fact helped Jacob at the beginning. The Edomites were considered based on their blood relationship with Jacob. Those barred, on the condition of verses 1 and 2, particularly from the tribe of Levi, could not perform the priestly role, but they could be saved through faith and also participate in corporate worship. The individual could still enjoy fellowship with God and participate in the blessings He provided for all those who have faith in Him. Ruth, though a Moabitess, could enter into the congregation of the Lord, due to her faith. Remember, God is not only holy, He is also merciful.

Emphasis:

God is Holy! And the sacredness of His holiness is preserved. You can enjoy quality worship with the Lord through a living faith. And you could be excluded depending on your stand.

Prayer:

Thank God for the grace of coming into His presence and enjoying quality fellowship with Him.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

I Kings 19 - 22
13th Apr.

Topic: THE SUFFERING SERVANT

Text: Isaiah 53

“He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering…!” V. 3 NIV.

Whenever I read this passage I shed tears! I became worried and many questions kept coming to my mind: How could man be so wicked and callous?! Why should a man undergo this suffering for the people who refused to acknowledge Him? Is this not the greatest example of the inhumanity of man to man? And others…But happenings around me in the few years I have spent in this wicked world have given answers to all my questions. Is it the unjust judgment of Pilate and his cohorts that is typical of judgment in our courts today that we would not have much to write about? But what is important is that the Son of God died for our sins. The Bible says that the human heart is desperately wicked, and only God can discern it. His own people – the Jews, - rejected Him! His disciples deserted Him! The Sanhedrin condemned Him. Even God, His father, “rejected” Him, so mankind could be saved and reconciled to God. Hallelujah!!!

Emphasis:

The purpose of Jesus’ suffering is to save all from inadequacies.

Prayer:

Sing this song prayerfully, “Thank you for saving me, thank you my God, thank you for….Amen.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

II Kings 1- 3
14th Apr.

Topic: THE EUNUCH IS BAPTIZED

Text: Acts 8:32-40

“And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, see, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?” V. 36 KJV.

There is no one that is unreachable with the love of God. Philip heard the Ethiopian reading a prophecy about Jesus, and this gave him a good idea about how to approach the man with the good news. Sometimes people are obviously interested in the Bible and what it has to say. We can tell by what they say or by their presence at church events. At other times, however, it may not be so easy to tell. Remember Paul’s experience in Athens (Acts 17:22). We need to note what people are interested in, what they talk about, and what goals they pursue. Then we can observe how these are consistent with or in contrast to a Christian worldview. From that, perhaps we can tell why we hold to the latter, and what doing so has done for us. It is ours to preach. It is the Holy Spirit that convicts. It is the Lord Jesus that saves. Christians should learn from the apostles of old who surrendered themselves completely to the direction of the Holy Spirit. They were obedient to His dictates! Successes trailed their missionary exploits! Yet these apostles never arrogated any of these successes to themselves. They gave all the glory to Jesus Christ. There is joy in being saved. The Ethiopian eunuch experienced this. Though problem may come, the joy of the Lord remains forever.

Emphasis:

Leave the result of your sowing efforts to the Holy Spirit in God.

Prayer:

Lord make me sensitive to Your promptings in all my spiritual endeavours.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:

II Kings 4 - 6