THEME: DEPART FROM EVIL
“For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: that you abstain from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.”
-It was common practice in certain pagan religious festivals that food polluted by idols was their delicacy. They enjoying the food which retained blood during their practice of idol worship. This was forbidden in the Jewish law as noted in Leviticus 17:10-12. We have seen an increasing number of people who practice witchcraft and join some cults like freemason, and we are called to prayer. Sexual immorality was also taken casually, which griefs the Holy Spirit. We know that our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit and sexual immorality defiles our temples. The Holy Spirit calls us to depart from all evil so that the gifts He gives us may be effectively utilized for the glory of His name. When we depart from evil, we obtain success and favor in that we do.
God is the same yesterday, today and forever. The message He spoke in the ancient days through His priests and prophets; is the same message that He speaks to us today. Whatever He declared evil is still evil today and whatever He declared good is good today. Nothing is new under the sun. Whatever happened in the Biblical times is still evident now even if the design of occurrence or orientation might have changed. The God of Abraham and Moses is still our God today. The God of Ezekiel and Jeremiah is the One we praise today. In Proverbs 4:27; God invites us to focus our eyes on Him and not to turn to the right hand nor to the left; but to remove our feet from evil. To depart from evil then, we need to first recognize what sin is. Sin is anything that goes against the will, nature and character of God. God sets the standards of righteousness and gives us the grace to depart from sin. Secondly, we need to repent of all sin. After recognizing our sins, we need to turn away or change our minds from practicing them and move towards the light of salvation. 1 John 1:9 reminds us that, “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”. Jesus does not take pleasure in the death of anyone but calls us to repentance and have faith in Him. Third is to replace sinfulness with Godliness. 1 Timothy 6:11 reminds us to pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness and gentleness. Godliness is the grace that enables us to operate by the spirit of the fear of the Lord; as we are encouraged to be holy because God is Holy. Godliness is achieved by continuous reading and studying the word of God, prayer, devotion and praising God; which causes a renewal of the mind. Jesus notes in Luke 22:46; that we should pray lest we fall into temptations. Since God is love, we obtain Godliness when we love God and our neighbours and pursue peace with everyone. Forth is to access the will of God in our lives through faith in Jesus Christ. When we have faith in Christ, we submit our plans to Him and trust Him with all our hearts. He gives each one a new heart and a new spirit through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, Who transfuses our blood with His and makes us His heirs. We then operate in victory through the power of the Holy Spirit for the benefit of His kingdom and glory of His name.
Jesus You are the same yesterday, today and forever, we appreciate You for who You are in our lives. Holy; holy; holy are You Lord God Almighty, Who was, Who is and Who is to come. We sing a new song to You Jesus and proclaim Your holiness in all the earth. Empower us dear Jesus our Lord and Savior through Your grace to walk in holiness and depart from evil. You are Holy Lord and have called us to be holy, grant Your grace of holiness Holy Spirit. We are sorry for the many times we have grieved You Holy Spirit, forgive us. Be with those of us who worship idols and consult demonic forces among us that they may know You and believe in You dear Jesus. Deliver our nation Jesus from all forms of idolatry and forgive us, we humbly ask You. Protect us from all evil and cover us with Your hedge of fire we humbly ask You. We thank You Lord for the candidates who have just received their results. Be with them Jesus and help them to transit with ease to the next level. Grant success unto all the other candidates who are finalizing their exams next week that You may grant them good success. Grant favor dear Master unto all our children that they may be successful in life and know You at an early age. Our lives, families and nation belong to You Jesus, we submit all to You. We seek Your grace and presence in all that we do Holy Spirit, guide us in all things for the glory of Your name. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us now, and forever more. Amen
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