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  • Writer's pictureOlufunmilayo Adekusibe

BE DOERS OF THE WORD, AND NOT HEARERS ONLY


 

Today’s Reading:

James 1:17-18, 21b-22, 27

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.….., which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.” (James 1:17-18, 21b-22, 27; NKJV)

 


The custom in ancient Israel is that the first sheaf of harvested grain was always offered to God (Ex. 34:22; Lev. 23:9-14) and these first fruits would be a foretaste of what was yet to be gathered. James referred to the disciples and the early Jewish Christians as the first fruits, that is, the first generation to believe in Jesus Christ as the Messiah. They were the first yield of a much greater harvest yet to be gathered into the kingdom as a result of the spread of the gospel (v. 18). God is not responsible for our response to temptation (our sin), because He is the source of all good things, the evil in the world today notwithstanding. God does not change; He keeps his promises to His people (v. 17).


Our salvation is not the process of this world but is the result of a meek, and gentle acceptance of the implanted word that God has caused to take root in our hearts. Our salvation should lead our transformed life to the service of God. It is therefore self-deception to think that God’s purpose for church attendance is only for the ministry of the word. Through the word we hear and obey, we are to majorly experience a transformed life that will result in higher service to God (v. 22). A true Christian lifestyle is reflected in the way we live, in our speech, in the way we love, and in the way we relate to the needy and those in distress around us (v. 27).


As believers whose role model is our Lord Jesus Christ, we should have a genuine heart, caring for the helpless, and the needy, those people God regarded as being precious in His sight, and pay attention to our personal holiness. By these, we are doing things pleasing unto God. We should readily serve human needs without looking back because the core of God’s heart is in the midst of the poor, the helpless, the orphans, widows. God’s majesty and power are best understood in light of His tender compassion towards these ones. When we focus our attention on the distressed, our actions are regarded as pure and faultless in the sight of God because they reflect his nature. This season, we are to evangelize faster than before, study the word of truth more, and intensify our prayer. In all, our looking out for, and defending the distressed, helpless and needy brings greater joy that cannot be qualified to God (Acts 10:4; Lev. 19:10).


Today, our nations have been plunged into untold deprivation, distress, grieving, and is poverty-stricken. Like the Psalmist in extreme grief, we are not to give up on God. Believing that whatever we or our nation is going through, God permitted it and is in it with us. By this, we are supposed to get closer to Him at our moment of distress. This is not the time to amass or stockpile money or wealth that will vanish. This is the time to take care of the helpless that have been knocked down, the needy, orphans and widows around us. Again, we are to safeguard ourselves from being polluted by the world’s value system which is based on wealth, power, and pleasure, but is to commit to Christ’s ethical and moral system. Our faith means nothing if we are committed to these values which are snares to us and easily vanish. The owner of our soul can ask for it any minute.

OLUFUNMILAYO TITILOLA ADEKUSIBE


 

Prayer:

  1. Father, thank you for the good and perfect gifts you have bestowed upon us, in Jesus name.

  2. Thank you for your concern and faithfulness at all times, in Jesus name.

  3. Father, teach me to always put eternity before me in all that I do, in Jesus name.

  4. Lord, break with your iron rod, the tyrannies of sin in our nation, in Jesus name.

  5. Father, uproot everything you have not planted in Your Church; let the power and fire in Your word revive Your work, in Jesus name.

  6. Father, by the power in the blood of Jesus, break every evil covenant, jinks, evil soul tie and bewitchment in the foundation of our nation, that is affecting the people’s well-being, in Jesus name.

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