Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Verse Of The Day : Oh, my dear children! I feel as if I’m going through labor pains for you again, and they will continue until Christ is fully developed in your lives.- Galatians 4 : 19 (NLT).
LISTEN :A new christian convert is like a seed sown, which just sprout up and laboriously nurtured to a mature useful plant. That’s why It’s painful to see or watch a christian who was once saved backslide. It’s a total waste of time and resources to have a christian convert go back to the errors of his or her past. It’s equally a heartbreaking experience to a gospel minister, or faithful christian to watch God’s handiwork (humans) go to hell. Beloved, maturing a young christian is one of the hardest things to do; and it involves labour,spiritual guide, nurture, patience, training in godliness, etc. Truly, it takes a considerable amount of time and effort to raise a faithful believer in Christ. Apostle Paul in his missionary journeys converted countless number of people from different religions to Christianity. One group of his converts were the Galatians, they received the word of faith from Paul and later slide into unbelief. Apostle Paul was the means of their conversion to God, and this he had achieved through much labour, prayers, and tears, because of this, he felt them as his children, and peculiarly dear to him, and because he had been the means of bringing them to the knowledge of the truth. Bothered about his [Paul’s] Galatian converts who we’re gradually abandoning the Christian faith, the gospel of Christ they received from him for another belief, he [Paul] therefore represents himself as suffering the same anxiety and distress which he endured at first when he first preached the Gospel to them, when their conversion to Christianity was a matter of great doubt and uncertainty.
He used the metaphor that demonstrated the pain of maturing a believer in Christ, he stated categorically that by reason of their backsliding, he’s going to go through the initial process of preaching and labouring as one feeding a baby and immature christian. He equated the labour he was to go through again as that experienced by a pregnant woman who carries her baby until the child is properly matured for delivery. He said, “Oh, my dear children! I feel as if I’m going through labor pains for you again, and they will continue until Christ is fully developed in your lives.” That’s, he will labour again till they once more receive the Spirit and unction of Christ in their hearts, from which they’re fallen, by their rejection of the spirit of the Gospel. Paul painstakingly did this because he desired for them to live nothing but Christ, and think nothing but Christ (Ga 2:20), and glory in nothing but Him, and His death, resurrection, and righteousness (Phi 3:8-10). Beloved, are you just given up on any christian that’s a victim of backsliding? Do you think that they’re now free to go to hell? Because you’ve made the first and second attempts to restore the backslider and it isn’t working, have you decided to abandon them to their fate? Can’t we strive more harder to save them as Apostle Paul did in spite of his initial sufferings for the Galatians? Beloved, may we be patient with the immature christians amongst us until Christ is fully developed in them.
Having read today’s devotional, what are you expected to do?
1. Don’t give up on christian backsliders, do all you have to do to save them; if they must go to hell, let it be that you have fought hard to save them.
2. If you’re spiritually matured, learn to be patient with immature christians and assist to nurture them to maturity.
3. Always remember that every spiritually matured christian stands by grace, therefore help those who’re weak in faith.
4. Train those within your sphere of influence in godliness, for godliness will make our lives and society worthwhile.
Daily Task :Are you a christian? Learn not to be judgmental about others; rather learn to be patient with the immature christians amongst us until Christ is fully developed in them.
Daily Reflection :Those who don’t understand the work of grace in our salvation, presumptuously sees themselves as superhuman and are often judgmental of others.
Prayer : Most High God, I bless your name today for your wonderful word, help me to overcome the thought of seeing myself as holier and more spiritual than others; but rather help them grow their faith in Jesus’name, amen.
Prophetic Word : Today, I prophesy over your life, you’ll grow in the grace of God. You’ll grow from strength to strength in your walk with Him and favour with men in Jesus ‘ name.