THEME: SUBMIT TO THE AUTHORITIES
“Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”
-The experience of discipline may be bitter initially but the fruits; sweet. It is through discipline that we know that we are legitimate sons and daughters of God. Proverbs 3:11-12, says that, my son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, for God disciplines the ones He loves. God also instructed the Israelites saying, “Do not be stiff-necked, as your ancestors were; submit to the Lord. Come to his sanctuary, which he has consecrated forever. Serve the Lord your God, so that his fierce anger will turn away from you. If you return to the Lord, then your fellow Israelites and your children will be shown compassion by their captors and will return to this land, for the Lord your God is gracious and compassionate. He will not turn his face from you if you return to him” (2 Chronicles 30:8-9). It is then through discipline first, of human fathers, mothers and guardians who are put under our care that we get to learn, and through the chastening of the Lord that we grow in faith and wisdom. We are called to submit to God, our heavenly Father that we may share in His holiness, and enjoy His righteousness and peace.
For grapes to produce wine, they have to go through processing. There are five basic stages or steps to making wine from grapes: harvesting, crushing and pressing, fermentation, clarification, and then aging and bottling. Sometimes God allows us to go through hard training so that we may become sweet like refined wine. Without crushing grapes you can never produce wine. Jesus was pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities and the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed (Isaiah 53;5). Jesus submitted to the authorities before His crucifixion. He died for our sins and by His blood we have received redemption, healing and victory over all things. Like Jesus, we are called to submit to His authority through submission to His divine will. Romans 8:7 says that, “The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.” Likewise, James 4:7 tells us, “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” Through humility and the fear of the Lord do we submit to His authority. God has also placed people in positions of power and calls us to submit to them, lest we bring forth judgement upon ourselves. These authorities may include:- leaders in government, work place, church etc. We are also called to submit to our elders who include; those who are advanced in age and the church elders. God also calls us to submit to our parents so that we may have long life here on earth. He also reminds; wives to submit to their husbands through respect and husbands through love, as this is pleasing to Him. Ultimately, let us submit to God for He is our Father and He will lead us in His wisdom and grace, to do all things according to His will. He has made us a new creation and given us His Holy Spirit to guide us into all truth. He reminds us in Mark 2:22 that, “And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins.” Let us then accept to follow after love and do the will of God through submission, and He will sustain us through His grace.
I love You Lord, my Strength, my Rock, my Fortress and Deliverer. My Rock, my Shield, my Stronghold and the horn of my salvation. I put all my trust in You. Your law Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. Your statutes are trustworthy, making wise the simple. Your precepts are right, giving joy to the heart. Your commands are radiant, giving light to the eyes. Your decrees are firm and all of them are righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold. They are sweeter than honey, than honey from the honeycomb. They are sweeter than wine, than wine from crashed grapes. Teach us to do You will Lord. Train our hearts in Your wisdom. Wash our hearts and souls with Your precious blood dear Jesus, and forgive us for the many times we have failed to submit to You. Train our hearts with humility and wisdom that we may submit to You. Teach us to walk work out our salvation with fear and trembling. Teach us to walk in the light of Your salvation. Teach us to hold fast our faith in You only Lord. Lord You give victory to Your anointed, You answer us from Your heavenly sanctuary with victorious power of Your right hand. Grant all our prayer requests and hearts desires dear Father. Fill us with Your wise counsel Holy Spirit that we may never depart from the path of truth. Instill in us love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility and self control. All glory, honor, authority, strength, riches, honor and power belongs to You Jesus, now and forever. Amen
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