Wednesday, April 5, 2017.
Author: Bishop Julius Okarike
Verse Of The Day: But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed. Galatians 2:11
LISTEN: No one is perfect no matter our claims of perfection. Though we tend to do things with sense of perfection, yet people still discover our evidences of imperfection. Like others, we equally have our own mistakes or imperfections. Therefore, we are not to crucify others for their imperfections, rather we are to encourage them to pursue perfection through faith in Christ. We all have our mistakes, but we must work at making our lives conform to the word of God. We should determine to live out the Christian life and not live in pretence or hypocrisy.
Apostle Paul, though an apostle who came much later than Apostle Peter and the other apostles of Jesus Christ, was strong and bold in confronting and correcting wrongs, to set the record straight. Despite the headship position that Apostle Peter occupied in the early church, Paul gracefully and respectfully confronted him for failing to live up to expectations as a Christian. Our verse of the day says, ” But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed. (Galatians 2:11).
Apostle Paul noticed that Peter was practicing a double standard life concerning the law. Though he (Peter) accepted the Gentiles who turned to Christ, and even ate with them, but when his fellow Jews from Apostle James visited, he separated himself from the uncircumcised Gentiles though they believed in Christ. With such attitude, Apostle Paul noticed that he (Peter) still believes that the law of circumcision was necessary for justification. Apostle Paul called him to order at the appropriate time and told him that people are justified by faith in Christ, not by the law. He opposed him for attempting to live contrary to the gospel they preached.
The bible says, ” But when Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was to be blamed. For before certain men came from James, he would eat together with the Gentiles; but when they came, he began to draw back and began to separate himself, fearing those of the circumcision party. And the rest of the Jews joined him in hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy. But when I saw that they did not act rightly with respect to the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter before them all, “If you, being a Jew, live in Gentile fashion and not in Jewish fashion, why do you compel the Gentiles to live as Jews?” (Galatians 2 11 : 14).
Beloved, let us learn to set the record straight by gracefully addressing inconsistencies and hypocrisy in the lives of fellow Christians. We all make mistakes, hence, we should learn to counsel and correct others with grace and save them from the grip of Satan. No matter how spiritual a person might be, he cannot be above giving and receiving counsel. Those who resist wise counsel in defense of their ‘spirituality’ are merely demonstrating arrogance and ignorance. My dear, are there things you must do in your family, Church, etc., to correct wrongs? Do it today.
Having read today’s devotional, what is expected of you?
1. Do not be a hypocrite, nor support hypocrisy.
2. Oppose hypocrisy around you and determine to set the record straight.
3. If you are opposed for being guilty of hypocrisy, receive it graciously and make amends.
4. If you must oppose hypocrisy in anyone, do it graciously and respectfully.
Daily Task: Learn to set the record straight by gracefully addressing inconsistencies and hypocrisy in the lives of fellow Christians and others where you can.
Daily Reflection: Those who resist wise counsel in defense of their ‘spirituality’ are merely demonstrating arrogance and ignorance.
Daily Prayer: Oh Lord! Make me a vessel of glory and honour in your hands. Help me to stand with, and for you at all times, in Jesus’ name, amen
Daily Prophetic Declaration: Today, I prophesy over your life, may the Lord give you the boldness and courage to set the record straight wherever you are, in Jesus’ name.
Daily Quote: No matter how spiritual a person might be, he cannot be above receiving counsel- Bishop Julius Okarike
Today In History: April 5, 1930 Mahatma Gandhi defies British law by making salt in India instead of buying it from the British.