Tag Archives: Study

VIEWPOINTS FOR SUNDAY, 21ST OF FEBRUARY 2016

Bible Study

THEME FOR THE MONTH: His Divine Presence
TODAY’S TOPIC: Accessing His Presence
KEY TEXT: Gen. 39:1-23
KEY VERSE: Gen. 39:2a
“And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man”

INTRODUCTION
Over the weeks, we have looked into the goodies attached to being with God. Those are the very little we can behold. However, there is much more. “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” — 1Cor. 2:9. The bounties that follow the presence are numerous to mention, and overwhelming to understand.

Today, however, we look at ways we can get this Presence. No result just comes; results are provoked. How do we provoke the release of Divine Presence?

1. OPEN YOUR DOOR
Many young people deliberately shut the door of their hearts to Christ. This is because they think being a Christian is boring. They are attracted to all the fun-promising things of life. However, Christianity does not stop fun; it only channels it rightly. Wouldn’t you enjoy getting first-hand secrets about your life and that of others from God Himself? How do you like to be guaranteed 100% protection? All you need to do is open up and let God. Christianity is NOT a call to suffering; it is a call to sonship. God really wants to care for you. However, He cannot. Why? Because family benefits are only enjoyed by family members. To enjoy the benefits we have seen, you must be a family member (Jn. 1:12). You should… You have to be saved. And if you want to, right now is the time (2Cor. 6:2).

Pray the prayer of salvation now before you continue studying. Ask God to forgive you of your sins. Ask Jesus to come into your life and take total control. Ask Him to be your personal Saviour and Lord.

Read also: Prov.14:12; Jn. 3:14-18; Jn. 3:36; Heb. 7:25

2. LOVE GOD
You would do almost for the sake of love. Unfortunately, however, young people have decided to love the wrong things. That is why you see them going the extra mile just to get the satisfaction they think they deserve. On the other hand, anyone who loves God will always want to follow Him, be with Him, and please Him. Your love for God will make you:

  • a. Listen to Him and obey Him always. You would not want to disobey God, if you love Him. You would always want to hear His voice. You would listen to everything He says and do them. One way to listen to God is by reading His word (The Bible) daily.
    – Jn. 14:23; Josh. 1:8; Ps. 1:2, 119:11
  • b. Talk to Him always. If you love God, you will always want to talk to Him. You would share with Him your pains and success stories. You would seek advice, direction and support from Him whenever you are confused. You would pray.
    – Jer. 33:3; Jer. 29:12; Lk. 11:9-10; Ps. 145:18

FURTHER STUDY:
Isa. 45:22; Heb. 11:6; Jn. 14:6; Jer. 33:3; Acts 2:21; Isa. 65:24

theTASK:
Everyone should come next Sunday with their I.E notebook.

PRAYERS:
1. Thank God for His word
2. Thank God sincerely for the privilege of His Presence
3. Confess any known and unknown sin to God now. Ask Him to forgive you and show you His mercy
4. Ask for grace to remain in God’s presence always.
5. Bless your week.

GOD BLESS YOU!!!

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’.

Fruits & Gifts

“A man’s gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.”
-Proverbs 18:16

“Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.”
-Matthew 7:20

Always, and automatically too, the world shifts its focus onto something new. People, places, events—anything—that comes up on the news. Of course, they even call it ‘the NEWs’. By now, it is already a known fact that if you want attention, you’ll have to come up with something new and helpful—something that meets a need! So, as long as you keep solving the problems of others, people will keep coming to you.

To enable us be in that number (Solution Providers), God gave us skills (gifts). Every man has got his and every woman has got hers. Some, however, develop theirs, and then it makes them more sought than others.

Interestingly, this happening also exists in the body of Christ. According to the Bible, and in 1Cor. 12:7, “the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man” for the profit of the church. That alone informs us that as long as one is a child of God, and Spirit-filled, he/she carries one [or more] special gift from the Holy Spirit. 1Cor. 12:8-10 gives a list of some of these gifts. Everyone cannot have every gift. Your gifts are different from mine (1Cor. 7:7). However, all is given—in different measures—by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 12:6; Eph. 4:7).

As expected, some Christians, with the help of the Spirit, nurture and grow their gifts. For these believers, the impact is greater and the coverage wider.

Spiritual gifts are wow! With them, a believer can edify the saints and build the church. Spiritual fruits, however, are better! They make you more like Christ, thus preparing you for Heaven. And of course, every Christian knows that Heaven is the ultimate goal.

But in our Christian world of today, many seem to be obsessed with spiritual gifts. They work so much to build them up, that they forget about building up fruits. Listen, your walk with God is MORE important than your work for Him! Who you are—not what you do—is what qualifies you for Heaven. And you get to know more of who you are, and how to become better, when you sit by the Master’s feet to be taught by Him. Jesus Himself pointed this out when He spoke of Mary to Martha:

But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
-Luke 10:42

Most ministers today, like Martha, are “cumbered about much serving” that they forget that thing which is “needful”. Most prophets today are more concerned about standing up to speak over someone’s life than they are about sitting down (like Mary) and have Jesus speak to their lives. Most teachers spend lots of time to prepare sermons, trying to force change into the minds of their listeners. A very tiny fraction of teachers, however, regularly study the Bible for themselves.

Everybody in our world wants to reach the others with their gifts; nobody is concerned about growing fruits from a renewed mind. Yearly in Nigeria, the number of new devotionals that hit the market increases. Yet, no fruits. Almost everyone is too busy changing others that they forget to see the BIG change they lack and really need.

Whatever the gift is—speaking, counselling, writing, singing, blogging, prophesying or teaching—more value is supposed to be placed on fruits. While both are important, fruits should appeal more to a real Christian. Hear Paul:

“But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”
-1 Corinthians 9:27

It is possible to prophesy, “cast out devils”, and do “many wonderful works” in the Name of Jesus, and yet miss Heaven (Mt. 7:22-23). Most healers and preachers of our time will miss Heaven; not because they ministered with charms, but because they have no fruits. Jesus, seeing the importance of fruits over gifts, advised that the way to discern the fake from the original is “by their fruits” (Mt. 7:15-16, 20).

Our churches of today place emphasis on only one gift of the Holy Spirit: tongue-speaking. People forget that the Holy Spirit also gives boldness to speak the word of God (Acts 4:31). Now, we want to ask ourselves: are there two Holy Spirits? No! Just one. And He is a Spirit “of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2Tim. 1:7). Why do people see the “power” in that text, and not the “love”? Whatever happened to “a sound mind”? Do you know that the same power that made you a tongue-speaking Christian also made you a witnessing Christian?

THEREFORE…
Heal all the sick and raise all the dead. But for as long as you remain scared, negligent or tired of preaching the undiluted GOSPEL of Christ with boldness, there’s very little you can amount to in God’s Kingdom.

Speak in tongues and prophesy. But remember that you are just an empty noise maker, if you have not love (1Cor. 13:1-2).

Go ahead and display your gift of the word of knowledge and of wisdom. Teach on. Preach on. Keep giving pieces of advice here and there, and keep writing (like myself). However, we only deceive ourselves, if we do not possess faith, patience or self-control.

A wise man once said, “What you do speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you say”. How could one be more concerned about the spiritual welfare of others that they lose interest in theirs? While we go about ministering our gifts to the others, let’s remember that “the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His” (2Tim. 2:19). Therefore,”let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall” (1Cor. 10:12).

In this journey of ours, gifts are important, but fruits are indispensable!

I wish you all same testimony in 2Tim. 4:7-8!

God bless.

Subscribe to Jikmatas!
Click here to receive email updates on new posts and services.

We promise to keep your details a secret!

Why You Should Have More PSPs This New Year!

Yes. You deserve the very best this new year! And you’ve got to have this best more often, and as much as possible!

This is because you are a regular reader here!

Okay, that was a joke.

It is because you need it (or them).

You should have more PSPs, yes, and because you need them! YOU NEED MORE OF THEM!

PLENTY.

But why…?
Every new year comes with its new troubles. Every new season is equipped with its new challenges. And, of course, for some folks, every new year is a new opportunity to make new resolutions. Keeping to resolutions are actually part of the challenges (or, for others, troubles) of the new year.

However, there’s something people rarely plan to do every new year.

ENJOY!

It is NOT a crime to make plans for entertainment in the coming year. In fact, you should only plan to enjoy yourself every year!

So, here’s how to ENJOY 2015, by having more PSPs, and why too:

1. MORE PRAYERS
Most people probably don’t want to hear this. But I ask, what other way is there to better enjoy the year (any year) than conversing with divinity? Here in Nigeria, most people know this… But sadly, not all who know it, understand it.

In Nigeria (which, by God’s Grace, is one of the most religious nations in the world), people pray at the start of every year. But they do this in groups. As I write this blog post, thousands of churches and religious groups across Nigeria have already started their annual fast programme. This happens in January every year.

But…

Really, how many of us remember to pray again after this collective exercise? So, what I’m talking about here is not a coming together. I’m talking about raising and maintaining your own altar.
Read about this Champion:
“And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” (Mark 1:35).

This truth will NEVER change: the spiritual realm creates and controls the physical. And here’s another truth which carries same unchanging power: you can NEVER grow bigger than your prayer life! People struggle with growth yearly, because they struggle with prayer yearly. Jesus knew that prayer commanded his results. See verse 34: “And he healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew him.” So, for these works to continue, He refuelled daily.

To succeed everyday this year, you must pray everyday this year.

2. MORE STUDY
Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.
-1 Timothy 4:13

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
-2 Timothy 2:15

“In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.”
-Daniel 9:2

“When you come, bring the coat I left with Carpus in the city of Troas. Bring the books and for sure do not forget the writings written on sheepskin.”
-2 Timothy 4:13

Can we…

…pay attention to study?

Ever heard of the saying: readers are leaders? Commit a reasonable amount of time to study for those projects this year. Carry out researches. Make findings. Grow your knowledge base. As a student, don’t you think it’s early enough to start studying? Wanna be something in the nearest future? Here’s ma question: how much of that thing do you know? Maybe it’s your dream to pursue medicine in the university. Then, it’s time you got prepared for it and stopped failing the science subjects in high school.

I understand that you have ambitions. You that have a gift, have you honed it yet? You enjoy public speaking, right? How many books have you read on the subject yet? Do you know that you can be taught by the world’s greatest minds: Albert Einstein, Mother Theresa, Benjamin Franklin, Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, John Maxwell, Billy Graham, Kenneth Hagin, Joyce Meyer, John Piper, Kenneth Copeland, Joel Osteen, Paula White, Bishop David Oyedepo, Pastor Enoch Adeboye and of course, me, Prince Godfrey… Haha!? All you need to do is purchase and read their books, subscribe to email updates from them, visit and follow their blogs, read their quotes, like their pages and suck out knowledge from them.

Christain, how often do you read your Bible? How much of God do you know? If His Word is the Sword of the Spirit (Eph. 6:17), how strong and sharp is your sword? Are you prepared for the battles this year has got in it?

Check those who soar; they are those who study!

3. MORE PRATICE
But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
-James 1:22

For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
-Romans 2:13

This year, as is the case every other year, thousands (if not millions) of resolutions will not be kept. Fact.

Change happens when we do. Not when we say we’ll do. Change itself is a ‘doing’ word, an action word.

Knowledge is not power; applied knowledge is! It is time you stopped deciding to change and just change! This part is not easy. But it is simple. God’s grace is available, and sufficient too.

The rewards of practice cannot be over-emphasized. Think about it. What if you put into practice all the truths from the books you have read? What if you did all the things instructed by the Bible? That life would definitely be glowing right now! Practice is the crown (glory) of learning (knowledge). Anyone who does not what he knows, the same is regarded as he who knows not! The only difference between those who know and those who don’t is seen in their actions. Actions are proofs of knowledge.

You need more PSPs this year. And here’s to having lots and lots of them.

From us @ Jikmatas,
|Happy, PSP-filled New Year|