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Posts Tagged ‘calling’

Ruth- A Story of Commitment.

Key Scripture: Ruth 1:16 (KJV)  And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:

SUMMARY

Commitment is rarity these days. It is difficult to find someone truly committed and because of the lack of commitment marriages are broken; families are split, employees are disloyal and authorities have all gone irresponsible. In this world of perfidy, sham and faithlessness we thank God for the story of Ruth; a story of love and commitment! Even though Ruth was a Moabites,  yet her character in the bible  is profound. She chose to love, follow and stay committed in what she believed! The question today is how many of us can learn the important principles of commitment, loyalty and love and  practice it in our daily lives. God calls us to be committed to Him in various ways and where there is commitment there is a blessing!

SERMON POINTS

Ruth- a story of commitment

Four Things That we need to be committed to:

1) Stay Committed to the House of God.

Ruth 1:1 (KJV)Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehem judah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons. 

We need to stay committed to the house of God. Commitment brings blessings. However, in the story of Ruth we see that Elimelech,  decides to move his family out of Bethlehem- ‘The house of bread’ because of the famine that came upon the land. Many of us are like Elimelech today, who can be defined as ‘situational believers’, shifting our focus, culture and lifestyle into a sensual culture away from the house of God.  Elimelech forgot the what God desired of his Abraham and Isaac when they faced the same. He forgot that the Lord is faithful and he took the knee jerk decision to go to Moab. Remember God will visit Bethlehem and would not abandon it. He defends the church and would stand by it. We should never have less commitment to the place where God has planted us.

2) Stay Committed to our Calling.

Ruth 1:2 (KJV)   And the name of the man was Elimelech, and the name of his wife Naomi, and the name of his two sons Mahlon and Chilion, Ephrathites of Bethlehemjudah. And they came into the country of Moab, and continued there

Elimelech-means “God is my King”. Elimelech had to live up to his name. Instead of allowing God’s rule in every realm of his life, he led his family away from the house of bread to Moab-the land of sin. God has called us by His name. We are in Christ and the challenge is to hold on to Christ in time of crisis. We are called to be the servants of the King of kings and not the victims of circumstances. How do you live in your calling today? How are we reflecting the kingship of God in our personal and corporate lives.

The One who calls you is faithful, He will do it.

3) Stay Committed in Character.

Ruth1:8-9 (KJV) And Naomi said unto her two daughters in law, Go, return each to her mother’s house: the Lord deal kindly with you, as ye have dealt with the dead, and with me. The Lord grant you that ye may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.

The meaning of Naomi is “pleasant one”. When unpleasant situations came her way, she was mindful of her daughters in law. She heard that God had visited Bethlehem and irrespective of the tragedies that came in her life, she decided to get back. There was a difference in the God of Naomi and the Gods of Moab. Naomi stayed true to her character. She chose not to be bitter with her daughters in law. She reflected a sound character irrespective of tragic situations.

Orpah means stiff necked and she chose to leave Naomi. Ruth however clung to Naomi. Ruth in hebrew means “beauty” and she was committed to her character. Its our character that determines our beauty.

4) Stay Committed to the Covenant.

Ruth 1:16 (KJV) And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:

Ruth was determined to stay with Naomi and thereby made a covenant . This covenant is the cause for the existence of this book. This book and the subsequent sequence of events revolve around this covenant. Ruth made Naomi’s God as her God and heavens heard her. She said nothing would separate her from the God  in Naomi’s household except her death and therefore pleads with Naomi not to send her back. Ruth’s statement gives us a strong sense of commitment to reflect upon. Naomi had reflected a strong covenant with God which Ruth knew and hence. Naomi saw and heard the determination of Ruth and stopped convincing her to go back to Moab. This chapter starts with a tragedy but ends with a harvest as Naomi gets back to Bethlehem. Naomi becomes the talk of the town and Naomi attributed it all to Shaddai God-(ALMIGHTY). In every situation of our life we should never forget His sovereignty. He is behind every season of our life and we should be close to Him through it all.

CONCLUSION.

In these perilous times when everything is masked by falsehood, let us be beacons of the Lord committed to His house, to our calling staying rooted to our character in faith to the everlasting covenant. Ruth is an image of the gentile church being strong in faith and entering into the covenant with God. As New Testament believers let’s stay strongly committed to the Lord. He will usher in a harvest.

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Doors to Nations.

Key Scripture: Corinthians 16:9 (KJV)  For a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries.

SUMMARY

God is  good to those who seek the Lord in truth and love! He has a special plan and purpose in our lives. Always remember wherever we are placed the Lord has kept great, effectual doors and opportunities open for us to influence the nations; provided we shift ourselves from a consumer level of only being in the receiving end to be a contributor. A contributor of our time, talent and treasure for the work of the Lord. Partnering with the Pastor and the servants of God to understand the weight of the ministry, to strengthen the work of the Lord and be a leader to represent the church in strengthening the systems of the church. Its therefore very important to fulfil your mission in life by utilizing the doors God has opened.

SERMON POINTS

A Great door.

In Greek ‘Mega’ denotes a great opportunity. As St. Paul writes the epistle  from Ephesus to Corinthians saying that God has opened a great door for him to minister effectively in the pagan city of Ephesus. It was a crucial door and Paul wanted to make the maximum utilisation of it.  Today the same God is opening a great door for us. God wants us to go through a great door in the city so that nations will be blessed. Remember we are pastors of  our workplaces so that God can work through us to bless and touch the lives of people around us.

What does God Think about  Nations?

Genesis 10:32(KJV) These are the families of the sons of Noah, after their generations, in their nations: and by these were the nations divided in the earth after the flood.

We read in Genesis that through Noah’s son’s nations came into existence. They had families, borders, territories and language. However, sadly when pride and arrogance caught the heart of the people to reach God, God confused them by causing the people to speak different languages so that they could not communicate and work together to build the tower. Hence, people scattered across the land giving birth to new nations, territories, cultures and languages.

God who wanted a nation for Himself chose an individual from a pagan nation to influence the world.

Genesis 12:1,2 (KJV)  Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:

When God called Abram to set out on a faith journey to the promised land though he was seventy five years old yet he didn’t doubt, hesitate or question God.  God promised that He would make him a great nation and would bless him and that he shall be a blessing. Today how many of us can make that commitment to the Lord? Are we ready to go out to the nations without any questions asked?

God is a good God to organize and provide things in our life, He was faithful to provide for Abraham and He is faithful to provide and bless us too. If we know that we are the descendants of Abraham we will also be a great nation and we will be blessed too.

Genesis 22:18 (KJV) “And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.”

After Abraham had passed his test of faith, the Lord promised him a life of blessing and multiplication. This is applicable in our life too, when we love the Lord more than anything in the world its time for a blessing!  Since Abraham loved the Lord  more than his only son Issac, the Lord promised that in his seed all nations of the world will be blessed and his offspring will capture the gates of the enemy.

So the promise of God to Abraham carried on to Isaac.

Genesis 25:23 (KJV) And the Lord said unto her, Two nations are in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels; and the one people shall be stronger than the other people; and the elder shall serve the younger.

The Lord speaks to Rebekah and gives a prophetic revelation about the two nations within her womb. Here we know that the Lord is referring to Esau and Jacob.The mantle passed on from Abraham to Isaac and Isaac to Jacob.

Genesis 27:29(KJV) Let people serve thee, and nations bow down to thee: be lord over thy brethren, and let thy mother’s sons bow down to thee: cursed be every one that curseth thee, and blessed be he that blesseth thee.

Jacob receives the blessings from his father Isaac and is made Lord over his brother. We as His children share the same blessings of Jacob. The magnitude of blessing is so much that if people bless us they will be blessed but if they curse us they will be cursed.

Genesis 28:14(KJV) And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.

The promise that the Lord made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob includes the doors to nations for us too. It is clear that we share a special privilege to bless the  nations and through our seed the earth shall be blessed! So are we ready to take up the blessing of  Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to proclaim and inherit it to the ends of the world?

Peculiarity of this Nation.

Deut 4:6-9 (KJV) Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day? Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons;

In May 14, 1948 Israel was declared a nation. Many couldn’t believe their eyes, but the Lord who had prophesied thousands of years ago in the book of Isaiah had to come to pass and after seventy years of existence Israel is prosperous and advancing today. There is something different and peculiar about this nation which is also a promise that God has for us.

1) The Nation have wisdom and understanding in the sight of others:

Deuteronomy 4:6 (KJV) Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.

The nation will be wise and understanding in the sight of others. If we follow the Lord Jesus, we are bound to be wise and understanding than anyone else in the whole world. If we make the bible the ground of our statues, God will change our level for other nations to hear the wisdom and understanding from us. We are blessed to bear the inheritance that distinguishes us as wise and understanding over other people of the world.

2) The Nation is  great because God is so close to them.

 Deuteronomy 4:7 (KJV)    For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for?

There might not be any nation that can say, “God is close to them.” Every week as we assemble in His house, He will bless us with His understanding in all things which will resolve and provide  for us.  The enemy might come to steal, kill and destroy but we have Jesus who has come to give life in abundance. Hence, when we have Jesus in our life we are always close to God.

3) The nation has statutes, laws and righteousness.

 Deuteronomy 4:8 (KJV)  And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?

The nation that the Lord establishes has an order, law and righteousness. The Lord is not pleased with disorderly lifestyle. Our homes are required to be house of thanksgiving, praise and worship where He can dwell among us. As Christians when we have the basic character of tithing, offering, assembling in the name of Jesus we have order in our lives. The Lord requires us to follow His law, and live according to His righteousness. So, do we have the character to live in an order?

4) The nation has generations who are taught of the Lord.

 Deuteronomy 4:9 (KJV)  Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons;

This blessed nation is one where importance is given to the generation. We are to teach our children and grandchildren what God has taught us. We should be able to transfer faith to the generations and make a commitment that the law of the Lord will run in our blood line. Our bloodline should be where the faith-line will run.

The Nation of God today.

1 Peter 2:9 (KJV)  But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;

God is calling ‘us’ a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar nation who are being called from the deepest darkness to come to His marvelous light. We are the holy nation for whom the Lord has opened great doors to go to the ends of the earth preaching the gospel calling the nations to the light of God.

CONCLUSION.

The Lord has opened a great and effectual door before us through our marketplaces and communities. We need to take up the task and stand up for the work of the Lord. No more should we be confined to ourselves and our families, the comfort zones that make us lose the opportunity that God has  placed before us. God calls us a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar nation being called from the deepest and darkest pit to His marvelous light. So are you available and prepared to the calling today?

A Call to Persevere!

Key Scripture: Jude 1:3-8(KJV) Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.

SUMMARY

The most blessed hope written and dispatched in the Holy-Writ to humanity is that our Lord Jesus is coming back very soon! We as His church have a responsibility, accountability and work to do. Without being responsible and fighting a good fight of faith we cannot enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, let us experience the joy of salvation and perceive unto our faith until the second coming of Christ!

SERMON POINTS

The Joy of Salvation:

There is joy in the presence of the Lord. Many of us today don’t give weight-age to the day that we accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior; the first joy that needs to come out from the heart of every Christian. If only we acknowledge the importance of being saved we will forever be joyful in the Lord. The joy of salvation should be daily because we are being washed by the blood of the Lamb every day. Therefore, let us stir ourselves with the joy of the Lord and He will take care of us!

One important aspect of being a child of God is to underlie our problem, trails and difficulties and still be able to testify the goodness of God. However, the bitter truth these days is we forget Him as our priority and expect the coming of the Lord to be delayed. Let us understand that the second coming of the Lord will not only be a spiritual experience but also a physical experience; He will sit on the throne and judge the whole world. Until then the church has been called and given some tasks. Therefore, let us assimilate His calling in our lives and abide by it!

How Do We Persevere to Our Calling?

1) Fight for the Faith.

Jude 1:3-4Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

As St. Paul says that he has fought a good fight of faith and the crown of glory awaits him in heaven in a similar manner we are called by God to fight a good fight of faith. Saying we don’t have opportunities or responsibilities in the church would be wrong because we are commissioned to pray and be prayer warriors. Prayer is a high calling and nobody is unemployed in the kingdom of God, but if we become like the one talent man in the bible who was lazy and buried his talent we will also be considered worthless and will be casted into the outer darkness like the servant man.

Therefore, let’s us take a share of our responsibility in the church, seek the Lord and ask how we can be usable vessels for the kingdom of the Lord. St. Paul asked his calling the moment when he received the light of the Lord and he was used mightily by Him. Like the old phrase says, “It never too late to right a wrong.” Hence, if we have the zeal and passion for Him its never too late. So what is our ask today?

2) Believe the Lord

Jude 1:5 (KJV) I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not.

In Jude we read that the Egyptians were destroyed because they didn’t believe. Though it is a wonderful feeling to be saved yet if we don’t continue in faith to believe and trust in the Lord, we greatly displease Him. The Israelite’s wavered in their faith. One day they worshiped the idols and the other day they came back repenting to God. Finally, a day came when they didn’t believe the Lord wholeheartedly, though the Lord had promised them a land flowing with milk and honey yet they erred and chose to believe the lie of the enemy. Similarly, today as Christians we pray to God halfheartedly, believe in the lies of the enemy and make our hearts troubled with fear and anxiety nonetheless committing a great sin against the Lord.

Remember God is a faithful God and He will give us things at the right appointed time. The world may receive it a natural way but we will get in a super natural way by a super natural power. Believe today that God has a definite work through the Pastors into our lives!

3) Protect our Calling

 Are Jude 1:6-8 (KJV) And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.

God has given as an estate a high calling. We read in the bible that the angels were given very high place in heaven to keep safe the great estate and possession. However, the angels defiled the flesh with the filth of sin. Therefore, God destroyed the whole earth except Noah and His family. Also in the days of Sodom and Gomorrah they did the same thing, they sinned against God. Hence, the angels failed in the great calling of God and they will be judged. God has placed us with a high calling, greater compared to the calling of angels but if we don’t protect our calling in purity, mix with the world and do the unwanted things of the world we might as well fall into the judgement of God.

If the Angels who were given high estates were judged how much more are we prone to the judgement of God? Therefore, let us be careful with our estate and if God has blessed us let us keep it pure and holy. Let’s us be vessels of honor to the Lord for we share the inheritance of Jesus, introspect our lives and impatiently await the Lord’s Coming.

John 1:12 (KJV) But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

We share the same inheritance of Jesus of calling God, “Abba Father” which is the highest inheritance we can have on earth. Therefore, as we have become His sons, let us protect our highest estate that God has entrusted upon us.

CONCLUSION.

The biggest possession we have in our Christian life is faith.  We are all employers in the Kingdom of Heaven to fulfill His calling in our life. We fight the faith, we believe in the Lord and we also protect our calling. Remember Jesus is coming very soon and we have a lot of work in hand; let every seed that we sow fall on the fertile soil, so that it will yield and produce double fold the good work of God’s that He has assigned us. Believe in Him and He shall direct our paths!