Posts Tagged ‘Test’


2 Corinthians 8:7-9, 12
But just as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us—see that you also excel in this grace of giving. I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich… For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.

I have always been uncomfortable about messages on giving because I fear it takes away from the essence of Jesus. In my head, I separate finances from the spiritual realm as they don’t seem to fit together well or so I thought. This morning, as I read Paul’s recommendation on giving, I saw new meaning to it. That added with our present situation of trying to buy a home with the limited resources we have plus our non-existent credit history has opened my eyes to a new facet in our walk with the Lord. When I first started putting money in the offertory as a little boy, my understanding of giving was that it was a fee we paid, and as I grew up, it felt like buying favors with God. After I was saved, it became a joyous offering of what God gave me.

However, my understanding of giving was limited to finances. As I progressed in my walk with the Lord, I learnt that giving was in all areas of our lives and what we gave was the first fruits of what we had, whether it be our time, our love, our service, our efforts, our participation, etc. When we note that our Lord Jesus was rich, our minds construe it as wealth and we feel sad for what he sacrificed in terms of wealth. What Jesus actually sacrificed was much more and that includes being in the presence of God, something He valued so much that He wanted us to have. The riches Jesus wanted us to have were not simply material comforts but the abounding grace of God. To the blind, the greatest gift is not a lottery but the gift of sight. To the dying, the greatest gift is life. To the materially unsatisfied dying soul, the greatest gift they can have is a fullness of joy that no money can buy, a lifetime of guilt free living, an eternity in the presence of God to enjoy His glory and grace and many more such things that we can never buy. Jesus became poor so that through his poverty and sacrifice, we may become rich in a way no man can be through their own efforts. Are you rich and if so, is that going to satisfy your soul’s cravings?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Philippians 2:5-7 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness…


1 Corinthians 3:10-15
By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.

As I read through this chapter that talks about divisions in the Church, I wondered what else was new about this topic that we could learn about. We know that we are called to worship God as Bible believing Christians and not as denominations because soon the denomination defines us and our values and not Christ. We are quickly driven by the ones leading the denomination or the ones who influenced them rather than the one who created them and used them for His own glory. Here Paul digs deeper about evangelism when he says in v7: So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.

We are called into God’s service by Jesus when He gave out the great commission and this was based on the authority that God the father gave Jesus. Our calling is to serve God to the lost and doing everything in the name of the father, son and holy spirit, not out own. For everything that we build for God will be tested severely to determine it’s worth and if there is anything that is found offensive to God, it will burn away and what will remain is our faith. Therefore as in building Churches, drawing people to Christ or even walking with Christ, we are assured that we will be put to the test and we better have sowed right for we will otherwise be burned severely. Lets resubmit our lives, our ministries and our walk to Christ and ask Him to lead, direct and be glorified rather than being scorched in the fire.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Romans 12:1-2
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

A sacrifice is an act of slaughtering an animal or person or surrendering a possession as an offering to God. If Jesus was the perfect sacrifice that was sufficient to end sacrifices altogether, what is the reason Paul is asking us to offer our bodies to God as living sacrifices and where do we make this sacrifice?

In return for God’s mercy upon us because of our sinfulness, Paul is asking us to consecrate our entire life – sleeping, eating, going to work, and walking around life – to glorify Him. The altar is the world and our transformed life in action is the sacrifice as an offering to Him. We are called to serve Christ to the world in EVERY area of our lives. We no longer are working or living for ourselves but for the glory of God alone. Have you submitted every area in your life to Jesus for His glory?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Acts 5:3-5a, 9-10a
Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God.” When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died…Peter said to her, “How could you agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.” At that moment she fell down at his feet and died.

The believers were all one in heart and mind and shared everything they had with each other. Those that had land and property sold them and brought the money to the apostles to use in the community and no one lacked anything. This is not something we can do today because we are worried how we will manage before we can worry about even our own family, forget our family in Christ. The issue highlighted in today’s passage is not just about sharing all we have with each other but about lying to the Holy Spirit. Is that an issue we face?

I have had severe difficulty dealing with lying because I lied for no reason most of my life and the Lord had to scrape it out of me in very painful ways. I am still tempted to lie about things just to sound ‘cool’ or to get away from a situation and the consequences are often dire. In the passage above, it talks about lying to the Holy Spirit and to God and this might sound alien to you but it’s really not. What Ananias and Sapphira did might have seemed like self-preservation but to the Lord, it was a break of trust. We are reminded today that we are not people of this world but God’s chosen ones and our lives are a living testimony of God`s saving grace. Therefore, we need to seek ways to glorify God and not to shame him or we will face his wrath!

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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