Thursday, October 30, 2014

It's the Relationship!!

Have you ever heard someone saying, I don’t want to hear “all-blessing” gospel.  I’m just fed up of people saying come to Jesus He will heal you, you’ll receive a miracle, you’ll get financial miracle.  Well, just this week I had heard this from a sister during my conversation with her.  This person is a believer in Christ.  She has a deep longing and yearning to know what exactly Jesus did by dying on the cross. 

This made me think deeply and intently.  Well, I am not a person who has diluted the Gospel and by God’s immense and sustaining Grace and Power will never do it.  God gave me this vision and burden -“to empower lives for a closer walk with God,” primarily focusing on the relationship with God than just the blessing of God.

When we minister to people, there are different kinds of audiences.  Some look for solutions to life’s problems such as healing, finance, blessing in life, etc.  Some look for solutions to their emotional and spiritual needs.  No matter what the need be, the only solution is God.  In Him and through Him all things are satisfied and made complete.

When Jesus was preaching the Kingdom of God on this planet, there were different kinds of people around Him.  Some came for healing, some came for deliverance, some came for other kinds of miracles, some came to hear His sensational speech and His teachings, which were eye-opening and so liberating.  Some were His close followers who had renounced their worldly work and occupations to be with Jesus. Some were fault-finders, always looking for ways to trap Jesus and put an end to Him.

Jesus after His 40 days of fasting began His preaching saying“Change your mind (repent), turn to God for the Kingdom of God has arrived” Matthew 4:17 (paraphrased).  Those that changed their minds and followed Jesus closely became His disciples.  Many times, we see in the four Gospels, Jesus did not share everything with everyone.  He shared the parables with all, but expounded the deeper meanings with His disciples and answering all their questions in a way to bring clarity in their mind.  Many of His teachings were not openly expounded to all.  He shared them exclusively with His disciples.  For example,
Luke 17
20 Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He replied to them by saying, The kingdom of God does not come with signs to be observed or with visible display,
21 Nor will people say, Look! Here [it is]! or, See, [it is] there! For behold, the kingdom of God is within you [in your hearts] and among you [surrounding you].
22 And He said to the disciples, The time is coming when you will long to see [even] one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see [it].

He shares very little with the others, but He takes pain to explain the whole matter and reveal the hidden with His disciples starting from Verse 22 through to 37.

Jesus gave the commission or the authority granted for a particular action or function to His disciples who were His close followers and who were with Him during His 3-1/2 years of ministry on earth.  He says “All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and earth has been given to me.  So my well-trained close followers go and make others also close followers of me like yourself by teaching them God’s Kingdom and God’s Kingdom Principles.
Matthew 28: 16- 20 (Amp)
16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed and made appointment with them.
17 And when they saw Him, they fell down and worshiped Him; but some doubted.
18 Jesus approached and, breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.
19 Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
20 Teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you, and behold, I am with you all the days (perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion), to the [very] close and consummation of the age. Amen (so let it be).

Therefore, as the Ambassadors of His Kingdom, we need to have a living, active, and growing relationship with our King, growing in the knowledge of Him and His Kingdom. The Lord God reveals Himself in our daily walk with Him through His Word and through our situations and circumstances.  So, shall we walk in the progressive revelation that comes through the ever-growing and progressive relationship with the Lord and King Jesus Christ?

Hope this post has been a blessing to you.  What motivates you to come to Jesus daily? Please feel free to share.

Written by Shanta S. Daniel

[Copyright@ Permission is granted to duplicate this article in its entirety, but only without additions, alterations or omissions of any kind, including the author and ministry name at the end]

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Give Back To God What Is God's

Give back to God What is God's
These are the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, spoken in an incident in which some of his haters were trying to catch Jesus in an offence against the then political system.  Most of the teachings of Jesus was not a threat to the Roman Empire which was ruling the Provinces of Israel and Palestine though Christ came preaching about a different Kingdom in the Roman King’s Rule, but it was unbearable for religious leaders.  The elders of the religion, chief priests, and pharisees were closely watching and spying to see in what manner they could catch Jesus Christ in His teaching and preaching that He had committed an offense against the Ruling Government and hand him over to the Governor’s rule and authority.  This Governor was sent by the Roman Kingdom to be in-charge of the provinces.

So, they find one moment to trap Jesus by asking a question whether to pay taxes or not.  Because Jesus was preaching about another Kingdom, they were expecting that Jesus would say “when you belong to the Kingdom of God, you don’t need to pay taxes.”  However, Jesus gave them an amazing answer and they were not able to catch Him by His word.  It is described as below. 

Luke 20
20 Keeping a close watch on him, they sent spies, who pretended to be sincere. They hoped to catch Jesus in something he said, so that they might hand him over to the power and authority of the governor.
21 So the spies questioned him: “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach what is right, and that you do not show partiality but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth.
22 Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”
23 He saw through their duplicity and said to them,
24 “Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?”
“Caesar’s,” they replied.
25 He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

The above Bible verses say that Jesus read their thoughts and intentions and understood that they did not ask Him out of a genuine thirst or a drive to know the truth but out of their craftiness to catch Him by His own word and bring upon Him some kind of danger or harm.  He told them to show a coin.  He puts forth a question back to those who asked Him the question, Whose image and inscription does it have? They had to reply Caesar’s because that was the image that was inscribed on it.  Then He says give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s. 

Let’s take the latter part of the verse which says “Give back to God what is God’s.”  Let’s try and analyze, where we can see the image and inscription of God?  The earth and its fulness belong to God.  God is the creator.  Also, Mankind is created in the image and likeness of God.  In another words God has inscribed His Image upon us and He has stamped upon us that He is the Creator and that we belong to the Kingdom of God.  Not all are in the Kingdom of God.  Those who are not under the Lordship and Ruler-ship of God are strangers and aliens to the Kingdom of God.  Kingdom of God is not visible to the eyes (Luke 20:21) It is within us in our hearts.  When we accept the Lordship of Jesus Christ through believing that we are made righteous by the sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus, we become the citizens of the Kingdom of God.  This process is called “to be born again,” because we are re-created in the image and likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ.  So, as the citizens of the Kingdom of God, God stamps upon us His Image and the inscription that says that we are His Royal Children, we belong to His family, and we are His possession. 

Since we belong to God, we are God’s.  Now, we don’t belong to ourselves, but Christ the King.  Our eyes are not ours, our ears are not ours, our feet are not ours, the members of our bodies are not ours, our passion, our liking, our wills, emotions, our properties, our possessions, everything should be centered on the Will of God.

It is not suffice that we are saved and born-again, but we need to have the understanding that we are not our own and we belong to the Kingdom.  We need to give ourselves back to the Kingdom.  It does not mean that all of us have to leave our current occupations and professions and become full time serving the Lord.  But it means in our capacity, in our circles which God has placed us in, we need to be doing the Will of the King. 

I once again would like to remind ourselves that Kingdom of God is not outside in any church or organization, it is within us in our hearts.  The Lord is ruling as King from our heart and the principles and precepts of the King are already given to us in the book called Bible.  Dr. Myles Munroe who has been my inspiration ever since I stumbled upon his book “Kingdom Principles,” calls Bible as the Constitution of the Kingdom of God.

It is so sweet to give ourselves back to the Kingdom than paying taxes to the government.  Because our Ruler, our King is generous and benevolent.  He does not rule us with Iron Hand.  Look how He rules us when we surrender to His Lordship....

Isaiah 11:
1 A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
2 The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him - the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord—
3 and he will delight in the fear of the Lord. He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes, or decide by what he hears with his ears;
4 but with righteousness he will judge the needy, with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth. He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth; with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.
5 Righteousness will be his belt and faithfulness the sash around his waist.

6 The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling[a] together; and a little child will lead them.
7 The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox.
8 The infant will play near the cobra’s den, and the young child will put its hand into the viper’s nest.
9 They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.

The shoot that comes up from the stump of Jesse indicates the Lord Jesus Christ and the rest of the verses speaks of His rule, how He will rule.  The result of which there will be no harm or destruction in His Kingdom.  Though this speaks of His 1000-year rule, just like that God is able to provide us goodness and His care in our lives and keep us out of the evils of this world.

Is it not a wise and best decision to come into the Lordship of Jesus and come under His Kingdom care and protection?  If your answer is yes, shall we then pray the following prayer?

Dear Father in Heaven, holy be your name.  I understand and conceive that Jesus has paid the price for my sin through His death on the cross.  I repent for my sins and I ask for forgiveness of my sins and washing of my sins through the Lord Jesus Christ.  I believe in Him and receive Him as my savior and Lord.  I come under the Lordship of Jesus.  I want to be reborn into your kingdom.  Thank you for taking me from this world of darkness and translating me into the Kingdom of Your Dear Son Jesus Christ.  Holy Be Your Name.  Your Kingdom come upon my life as it is in heaven.  Your Will be done in my life as it is heaven.  Thank you for making me a citizen of the Kingdom of God and stamping upon me Your Image and Inscription declaring that I belong to You.  Having thoroughly understood that I belong to you, as the Lord Jesus said, I give myself back to You.  Lord have Your way in the every day of my life and teach me Your precepts and statutes from the Constitution of the Kingdom of God.  Help me to walk in loving obedience to Your Will and Ways.  In Jesus Name I pray.  Amen. 

So...readers...hope that this post must have been a blessing to you.  Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments on this post.  Thanks!!

Written by Shanta S. Daniel

[Copyright@ Permission is granted to duplicate this article in its entirety, but only without additions, alterations or omissions of any kind, including the author and ministry name at the end]

Monday, October 06, 2014

Live Full Lives, Full in the Fullness of GOD

How many of us desire to be filled with God? Is it the right desire? Is it biblical?

This is a very, very profound thought and can be dealt comprehensively, but however, in this post I am sticking only to Ephesians chapter 3.

Apostle Paul is saying in Ephesians 3:19 (THE MSG) "Live full lives, full in the fullness of God." He prays to God for us the family of God who has the surname titled Yahweh.   For ex. Shanta Daniel (my biological father) is actually Shanta Yahweh (MY ACTUAL FATHER THROUGH CHRIST) (Ephesians 3:14-15 AMP  Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for Whom every family in heaven and on earth is named [that Father from Whom all fatherhood takes its title and derives its name].)

He prays saying "you may be filled [through all your being]unto all the fullness of God [may have the richest measure of the divine Presence, and become a body wholly filled and flooded with God Himself]!" 

Not only that He is saying that God is able to do above and beyond this prayer as in Ephesians 3 Verse 20.  "Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]—"

What is meant by being filled with the Fullness of God? It is EVERY aspect of GOD in us...IS GOD GOOD? IS GOD HEALTHY? IS GOD PROSPEROUS? IS GOD POWERFUL? IS GOD FULL OF DIVINE LOVE? IS GOD SUCCESSFUL? IS GOD THE RULER? DOES HE HAVE DOMINION? It is to have the richest measure of the Divine Presence in our lives so much so our bodies are wholly filled and flooded with God himself!!  It sounds exciting, is it not?

How can we have the FULLNESS of GOD in us? The KEY to this is CHRIST.  There is so much unending boundless, fathomless, incalculable, and exhaustless riches in Christ through whom all things were created by GOD.  Bible says, in and through Christ all things were created.  Through the faith in Christ, we dare to have the boldness of free access to God who is Most Holy and who dwells in the unapproachable light. 

When we receive Christ as Lord and savior of our lives, He washes our sins away and comes into our heart. Through faith, Christ dwells in us.  Our faith in Him makes Him feel at home!! When Christ is comfortable within us, we are strengthened in our inner being by His Spirit, the Holy Spirit, which dwells in us.  As the Holy Spirit takes control of us in every aspect of our lives, He will enable us to be deeply rooted in the Love of Christ and also to practically experience the breadth, the length, and depth of the Love of Christ which far surpasses the mere knowledge.  The level to which we experience the Christ’s Love in real and practical ways, far beyond the human understanding, to that measure we allow the Divine Presence in our lives.  If the level is full, then we become wholly filled and flooded with God Himself. Ephesians 3: 15-19

I have put it in a small paragraph, but this is so profound..

In order to have the fullness of God in our lives as Apostle Paul desires for us, we need to have given the Holy Spirit full and complete control and be led by Him always in our thoughts and actions, in our decisions and choices.  Because Verse 20 says, according to the power that is working within us, we will see the results above and beyond.  This power is Holy Spirit Power, the Power of Christ’s Love within us.

Okay.  What is the end result of it? End result of it is GLORY TO GOD!! Yes...we end up glorifying God in our lives fully and completely!! Is it not wonderful!!

Ephesians 3: 21
Glory to God in the church!
Glory to God in the Messiah, in Jesus!
Glory down all the generations!
Glory through all millennia! Oh, yes!

Convinced that it is Biblical? If so...

Shall we then begin to desire this by saying a simple prayer "Jesus you are my Lord and my savior.  You are my redemption and salvation.  Lord I believe in you no matter what.  Let me have the faith in all situations that makes you feel at home. Lord let me be fully rooted in the Love of Christ.  Lord settle down in my life and have Your way through the Mighty Holy Spirit.  I want to give full control to You Holy Spirit, please take full control of my life.  Lead me into ways that I may practically experience Your Love, the breadth, the length, and the depth of it in my life so that I will be filled with You so much so I may live full life, full in the fullness of YOU, GOD, so that You Will be GLORIFIED in me and through me!!! In Jesus Name AMEN!!"

If you have any thoughts and comments on this post, please feel free to share. Thanks :-)

Written by Shanta S. Daniel 
[Copyright@ Permission is granted to duplicate this article in its entirety, but only without additions, alterations or omissions of any kind, including the author and ministry name at the end]

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