Friday, March 3, 2017
Author: Bishop Julius Okarike
Verse Of The Day: You must put away every kind of bitterness, anger, wrath, quarreling, evil, and slanderous talk. Instead, be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ also forgave you. Ephesians 4 : 31 , 32
LISTEN: The new life in Christ comes with huge responsibilities. It is a life of sacrifice, commitment and dedication. That is why the bible says, “I plead to you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that all of you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be all of you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that all of you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.”(Romans 12 : 1 , 2).
The new life in Christ comes with a change of attitude, from the old to the new. This is why it is difficult for most people to live out the new life in Christ, even after they have accepted Him as their Saviour. The difference between a genuine Christian and a churchgoer is in their attitudes to the new life in Christ. A genuine Christian surrenders his or her life to Christ, therefore, is determined to replace the old life of sin with the new life of purity and obedience to God. But the churchgoer sticks to the old life of sin and disobedience to God.
The new life in Christ place on us the responsibility to put off certain attitudes and put on others. Our verse of the day says, ” You must put away every kind of bitterness, anger, wrath, quarreling, evil, and slanderous talk.” (Ephesians 4 : 31). This means that, we should deal with those little things we do, that we do not regard as great sin. What most Christians see as sin are: murder, stealing, adultery, and other sin they might classify in this category.
Unfortunately, they fail to realise that even those ones we do not regard as sin are equally sin. Sin is dangerous and harmful no matter how small it might seem. If it were not so, the scripture would not have warned us to get rid of bitterness, which is, being angry and unhappy because of unfair treatment. Anger, which is, having a feeling that makes you want to hurt other people. Wrath, which is, having extreme anger. Quarreling, which is, to argue and to have verbal conflict with someone who opposes you. Slander, which is, to make a false spoken statement that causes people to have a bad opinion of someone.
Beloved, for the fact that you have accepted Jesus Christ, you are now a new person. You are expected to live in line with the will of God. You are to be kind and compassionate. That is, you are to be sympathetic or helpful in nature. Besides, we are to forgive one another. That is, we should allow room for people’s errors and weaknesses. Beloved, bury your old sinful lifestyle and assume the new life in Christ, for if you neglect it, what you saw yesterday as a small sin will graduate to destroy you completely tomorrow. Friend, perhaps you are not yet born again, this is an opportunity for you to give your life to Jesus Christ. Accept Him today and be saved.
Having read today’s devotional, what is expected of you?
1. Do not be angry and unhappy because of unfair treatment meted to you, instead, hand your case over to God in prayer.
2. No matter what happens, do not allow evil to rule in your heart, rather control your actions by the help of the Holy Spirit.
3. Determine to get rid of bitterness, anger, slander, quarreling, etc, with the help of the Spirit.
4. Determine to live the new life in Christ no matter how hard it might seem.
Daily Task: Stop being angry and unhappy because of unfair treatment, drop the feeling that makes you want to hurt other people; learn to control your anger; never engage in verbal conflict with someone who opposes you, and avoid making a false spoken statement that causes people to have a bad opinion of others.
Daily Reflection: The new life in Christ Jesus is the antidote to the old life of sin, just as the old life of sin is the problem of the new life.
Daily Prayer: Almighty God, I ask for grace to faithfully live the new life in Christ Jesus. Help me to overcome the body of sin to the glory of your name, in Jesus’ name, amen.
Daily Prophetic Declaration: Today, I prophesy over your life, may God grant you grace to faithfully live the new life in Christ Jesus. May He break the yoke of sin over your life to the glory of His name, in Jesus’ name.