Monthly Archives: June 2015

The Reason for the Holy Ghost & Power

Everybody—or at least, almost everybody—prays for power. Hardly any, however, ever ponders, “If eventually I am given this power, what will I use it for?” Apostle James says the reason we don’t receive is because what we ask is for personal pleasure (James 4:3).

The Holy Spirit is power. Anywhere there is the Holy Spirit, there is power. You cannot separate power from Him. However, He does not reside everywhere! And that’s the reason why power is not everywhere. Get the Holy Spirit and you have gotten power.

Majority of Christians—sadly enough, some are reading this post (sorry for the honest pinch!)—still ‘assume’ that they have the Holy Spirit. The only reason or ‘proof’ for this being that they “speak in tongues”. I’m really sorry for my strong disagreement with you on that one. Most of the Christians who think they speak in tongues are mistaken. They only BRAG in tongues. They make much noise with it only to intimidate other growing Christians.

Let us never—ever—try to limit God’s Spirit. One way we limit Him is by having—and spreading—the mindset that the only proof of His indwelling is the speaking of tongues. God’s Spirit gives power to live above sin. So, don’t keep sinning and keep speaking—or rather, BRAGGING—in tongues. God’s Spirit gives power to heal the sick, to deliver the oppressed and to work miracles. If the devil is still tormenting you via sickness and oppression every day, you really need to stop faking the tongues thing. Furthermore—and most importantly too—the Holy Spirit gives power to WITNESS! If you still cannot boldly declare the Gospel of Christ, really, why make such noise?

SO, REALLY, WHY THE POWER?

See Acts 1 vs. 8:
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
(Emphasis mine)

The main reason for the power of the Holy Ghost is: ministry!
Every other thing is secondary. Miracles, healings, prophecy, tongues, and etc all make up the icing on the cake. Why? Everything Jesus did was because of the Kingdom. Of course, that (the Kingdom) was what brought Him here in the first place. And so, when it was time to leave, He told us to “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Mt. 28:19).

In Acts 1:8, what Jesus meant was, “after this power is come on you, you shall be evangelists”. Tongue-speaking is not the only proof of a spirit-filled Christian. Check out what happened in Acts 4:31.

And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.
(Emphasis mine)

After this baptism of the Holy Ghost, the Bible further commented in Acts 4:33, “And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus”. “Daily in the temple, and in every house,” these ones who were truly filled, “ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ” (Acts 5:42). If truly the Holy Ghost is in you, my dear, you’ll witness.

How come you are the only one saved in your family? Some of us still assume that our siblings or parents are saved… Really?

Today, many preachers/teachers rarely talk about God. It’s always about how long (in hours) they speak in tongues or about how many miracles ‘they performed’ in 1915. That is why after the jamboree in services, majority—and I mean majority—of the attendees/members return home the same way they came to church (if not worse). Jesus said, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me” (Jn. 15:26). And you begin to wonder if these preachers/teachers so-called are led by this same Spirit. Whatever happened to the power and influence which led Stephen so much that the people “were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake” (Acts 6:10)?

DO I BELIEVE IN TONGUES?

Oh, sure I do…with all of me! What I will not accept, however, is the heavy emphasis placed on it as the only proof of the indwelling. Ever heard anyone ask before, “Do you have the indwelling of the Holy Ghost with the proof of witnessing”? How about, “are you sure the Holy Spirit lives in you; can you work miracles?” No! It is always, “do you have the gift of speaking in tongues?”.

That gift is very vital. It sure is. But it is not all the Spirit can give. Jesus said we shall do greater works than He did. Why limit these ‘works’ to just a sign? You can do more; but only if you see the possibility from scriptures.

In Jesus’ Mighty Name, I pray that God deepens our understanding of who He really is, and what He really can do!

God bless you immeasurably!

OVERCOMING TEMPTATIONS

All Christians fight the daily battle against temptations. No man or woman is exempted from this fight. It is one of the battles we must fight and win every day in the war against the arc-enemy (satan). It is of little importance whether you are a pastor or usher in church, you must fight your own battle. Nobody is above being tempted. Some preachers/teachers misleadingly tell their congregations otherwise. No matter your level or years in the Christian Faith, you must war against temptations. In Matthew’s rendition of the Gospel, he tells us that Jesus Himself was “led” up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. So, if Jesus faced it, we all sure will.

According to the Oxford Pocket English Dictionary, temptation is an incitement to do what is wrong or forbidden.

The truth is that temptations should not seem strange to the believer. In fact, here in the Kingdom, if you stay without temptations, you are not a Christian! This is because, for one, our model (Jesus Christ) was tempted; and if we (as Christians) are Christ-like, we should expect temptings. Temptation, therefore, is not sin. Yielding to it, however, is.

By now, you already know (either by personal experience or by gained knowledge) that fighting—and winning—each of these battles is not easy. Some people win these battles daily. Others are not consistent with the wins. However, and saddening so, much more are still struggling for a single win.

WHY YOU SHOULD WIN THESE BATTLES
There is a lot of gain in overcoming temptations. Here are just a few of them:
1. It reveals God’s Grace and Mercy that abounds towards you (1Cor. 10:13).
2. It is a pointer to an incoming blessing and prize (James 1:12).
3. It grows your faith—and since we are talking battle here, it increases your rank—thereby qualifying you for greater prizes after greater battles (Lk. 16:10).
4. It gives you the qualification to help and encourage others in their own times of temptings.
5. Etc

HOW THEN DO YOU WIN?
The Bible gives three war strategies. These I want to call the WPS Formula. Unlike in the battles fought with guns and grenades, you use these strategies on yourself instead of the enemy:

1. WATCH
Peter warns that the believer must be “vigilant” should he overcome in this battle (1Peter 5:8). How do you watch? By folding your arms and praying for grace? No. You watch deliberately. Most Christians wrongly pray the prayer for grace. God does not do this for you. He gives you the strength, yes, but He allows you do this yourself. It is crazy to walk wilfully into places, people, and events that promote sin. Do not do it! Do not play with sin; it is as dangerous as a snake. You must deliberately make the decision to leave that dirty job, desist from visiting that member of the opposite sex at odd hours, or end that sinful relationship with a friend. The place of watching is a place of deliberate decisions. God did not make Joseph disappear when he stood before Potiphar’s wife; Joseph had to run with his legs (Gen. 39:12)! Daniel decided himself. Nobody pushed him to request for vegetables instead of the king’s meat, neither did anybody take him to the chief of the eunuchs; he went himself (Dan. 1:8). Until you make deliberate decisions to “flee these things” (1Tim 6:11-12), you will continue to lose these battles.

2. PRAY
“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Jesus said this to His disciples in Mt. 26:41. Prayer empowers your spirit. It keeps you ‘willing’ always. An evangelist at my home church back in Northern Nigeria once told something. I tried it out, and was pleased that it worked. He advised me to pray, immediately I noticed a tempting thought in my head. He said prayers could kill these thoughts before they grew into actions. He was right! Scriptures say every knee bows at the Name of Jesus (Phil. 2:10). Prayer shows your inability to help yourself. It puts you at the mercy of God. Understand that we fight not against humans, but against spiritual forces. You need a mighty hand at work in you, if you must win. You need somebody bigger. You need God—so you need prayers. Moreover, He has said, “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” (Jer. 33:3)

3. STUDY
The Psalmist wrote, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”(Ps. 119:11). God’s word empowers you for the battle. These powerful guidelines keep you informed of what the enemy’s tactics are, and how you can overcome them. Even Jesus used what was written [in scriptures] against the devil. In chapter number four of Matthew’s account of the Gospel, He (Jesus) always said, “It is written”. Hear the rendition of Ps. 119:165 from the Amplified Bible: “Great peace have they who love Your law; nothing shall offend them or make them stumble.” The Scriptures have life in them (Jn. 6:63). Feed on God’s word, if you need your spirit to come alive. The mind is the centre of any man. To change a man, you have to change his mind first. And, concerning the mind, hear Paul: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). Your study gives you the tips for overcoming this battle (2Tim. 2:15). You must learn new strategies often. You need to renew your mind (Rom. 12:2; Eph. 4:23) via the word of God. Take out time everyday deliberately to study the word of God.

God is your strength. To win in this series of battles, you will definitely need Him. I pray for you, to receive the enablement to commit to these three things, in JESUS MIGHTY NAME! Amen.

See you at the place called ‘THERE’.