Today, the entire world is celebrating Pentecost, a significant day marked by the presence of the Holy Spirit. Before delving into my message, let's reflect on the profound nature of Pentecost. In Acts 2:1 we find the account of this momentous day.
May 29, 2023
Acts 2:1-4 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Today, the entire world is celebrating Pentecost, a significant day marked by the presence of the Holy Spirit. Before delving into my message, let’s reflect on the profound nature of Pentecost. In Acts 2:1 we find the account of this momentous day. It states that when Pentecost arrived, all the believers were gathered together in one place. The power of unity is undeniable. When people join together in a single location, extraordinary things occur. I encourage you to attend a church service and experience the transformative power that arises when everyone congregates in one place.
To gain a deeper understanding, it is crucial to recognize that the day of Pentecost occurred ten days after Jesus’ ascension. After Jesus ascended, there was a ten-day interval leading up to Pentecost, during which the Holy Spirit was bestowed upon believers.
Acts 1:4-5 And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with[b] the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
Jesus, in no uncertain terms, issued a directive to His disciples. He ordered them to remain in Jerusalem and await the fulfillment of the Father’s promise. He reminded them that although John had baptized with water, they would soon be baptized with the Holy Spirit. Remarkably, Jesus did not provide them with a specific timeframe. He did not say to stay in Jerusalem for precisely ten days.
The instruction given by Jesus was clear: the disciples were to remain in Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit arrived. This command left the duration of their wait open-ended. It serves as a reminder for us not to impose our own deadlines or timelines on God’s promises. Instead, our focus should be on obedience. We must simply obey without trying to confine God’s timing to our own expectations.
Consider the significance of the number ten. In this case, the disciples waited for ten days before the Holy Spirit’s arrival. It’s worth contemplating the parallel with the Israelites’ journey from Egypt to the Promised Land. Due to their disobedience, what should have been a ten-day journey turned into forty years of wandering in the wilderness. Let this serve as a cautionary lesson for us not to let our disobedience prolong our journey. May we avoid the pitfall of turning a ten-day experience into a forty-year ordeal by faithfully obeying God’s instructions.
The disciples faithfully obeyed Jesus’ command and remained in Jerusalem for the full ten days, waiting and praying. It is noteworthy that the arrival of the Holy Spirit did not occur at a convenient or expected time.
Acts 2:15 For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.
we can determine that the Holy Spirit came before 9:00 AM. Here Peter addresses the crowd and he assures them that the disciples are not drunk, as some may have assumed, as it was only the third hour of the day. The third hour of the day corresponds to 9 o’clock in the morning. This confirms that the Holy Spirit’s arrival and the subsequent events transpired well before 9:00 AM.
Consider the disciples’ mindset during those ten days of waiting. They did not begin praying at a late hour, such as 10 o’clock in the morning. No, they were awake and in expectation much earlier than that. They understood the weight of Jesus’ command and were eagerly anticipating its fulfillment. When Jesus gives a command, it is essential to be in a state of expectation. Why? Because even a single promise from the Lord has the power to radically alter the course of your life and redirect your path.
Let’s emphasize the disciples’ posture in Jerusalem. They patiently waited for ten days, devoting themselves to prayer. They gathered together, united in their purpose. They understood the significance of Jesus’ words, and so they remained dedicated to prayer during this period of waiting. And then, on the day of Pentecost, the long-awaited moment arrived—the Holy Spirit came upon them.
Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.
Pay attention to the word “suddenly.” When you obey Jesus’ words without imposing deadlines or conditions on His promises, you open yourself up to the possibility of a sudden transformation in your life. Remember, God is never late; He is always on time. Suddenly, as in an unexpected and awe-inspiring manner, something remarkable occurred. From heaven, there came a sound like a mighty rushing wind. This sound filled the entire house where the disciples were gathered, saturating the atmosphere with its presence. The impact was profound, as the sudden arrival of the Holy Spirit brought about a significant shift in their lives. Similarly, when you align yourself with God’s plan and purpose, everything—your surroundings, circumstances, and life itself—will align with the reality of His presence and power.
I want to speak prophetically to some of you, for the Lord has given you specific promises in your life that you are patiently waiting to see fulfilled. Though it may not have happened yet, I want to encourage you to continue waiting on the Lord. In due time, suddenly, the Holy Spirit will enter the room with great power and presence. His arrival will not be subtle; it will be a moment of unmistakable revelation. However, it all hinges on your obedience to wait, to patiently endure. Rest assured that if God has made a promise, He will fulfill it.
In Acts 2:3-4, we see the Holy Spirit manifesting as divided tongues of fire that rested upon each individual. They were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. This marked a significant shift in history, as the Holy Spirit was no longer just upon people, but He now dwelled within them. Once you have received the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, you are sealed by Him. The Holy Spirit will not leave you; He will remain with you.
Listen closely, my friends. When you hear the gospel and receive the seal of the Holy Spirit, know that He will not depart from you until the day of redemption. This means that until you are perfected and transformed into the image of Christ, the Holy Spirit remains with you. He serves as a guarantee that God is actively working in you and will not abandon you.
Philippians 1:6, And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.
Let us remember that it is God who initiates and carries out the good work within us. We simply respond to His work. If He initiated it, He will perfect it. If He began it, He will sustain it. Amen!
Now, let’s shift our focus to today’s topic: experiencing abundant blessings. How many of you aspire to receive an abundance of blessings in your life?
Genesis 1:27-28 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
God created mankind in His own image, both male and female. Notably, God blessed them. Consider this: right after creating humanity, the first action God took was to bestow His blessing upon them. He then spoke to them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, and every living thing that moves on the earth.” Allow me to emphasize that it is through God’s blessing that the pathway to abundance and multiplication is opened. The blessings we receive are themselves a divine gift.
There is a singular blessing that serves as the source of multiple blessings in your life. This blessing encompasses prosperity, peace, and joy, all of which are the fruits of this singular blessing. This is precisely why God blessed them. Following the blessing, God instructed them to be fruitful and multiply. Why? Because within the very blessing He bestowed upon them lies the potential for fruitfulness and multiplication. It is not something you achieve solely on your own, thinking, “I must be fruitful, I must multiply.” Rather, it is the blessing of the Lord working within you that enables you to be fruitful and multiply.
In order to receive blessings, it is essential to seek the blessing of God. Let us affirm together: “The blessing of God is the source of all blessings.” This truth is emphasized in Deuteronomy 28, which we often recite.
Deuteronomy 28:-1-2 And if you faithfully obey the voice of the Lord your God, being careful to do all his commandments that I command you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the voice of the Lord your God.
The opening words of this passage state, “If you diligently obey the voice of the Lord and heed His commands,” then you will be elevated above all nations on the earth. The blessings of the Lord will abundantly come upon you and surpass you. However, it is important to note that before blessings can overtake you, there is a blessing in being lifted up.
Your position must undergo a transformation from an inferior reality to a superior reality. When this shift occurs, when you are transplanted from an inferior reality to a superior reality, blessings will begin to overflow in your life. They will overtake you and become abundant. It is important to understand that the blessing of the Lord differs significantly from financial blessings alone. Financial prosperity is merely one fruit of the blessing. The blessing also brings peace, restoration in relationships, a healthy body, a healthy life, and divine health. All of these are the fruits of the blessing. Today, what you truly need is not just these individual things, but the blessing itself. When you possess the blessing, you will naturally experience the fruits of these blessings.
Galatians 3:13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree”
Let’s explore the concept of this blessing together. In this verse, it is revealed that Christ took upon Himself the curse of the law in order to redeem us. As it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree.” But why did Christ have to bear this curse on our behalf? The reason lies in the fact that Adam lost the original blessing in the Garden of Eden. Do you recall what transpired in the Garden of Eden? Adam disobeyed God’s command and partook of the knowledge of good and evil. Consequently, this act opened the door to curses according to God’s proclamation.
Just envision a life where you tirelessly engage in labor day after day, only to be met with fruit surrounded by thorns and thistles. It’s a life burdened with curses. However, this was not the divine plan for Adam. God intended for Adam to reside in a bountiful garden, where luscious and abundant fruits thrived effortlessly, without the need for perspiration. This is what God desires for you as well: a life devoid of toil. The incident with Peter toiling all night should not define your existence. Your life should not encompass arduous toil.
Toiling is not a blessing; work, on the other hand, is a blessing.
One utterance from Jesus altered Peter’s fate from toiling to proclaiming the gospel. What you require is a single word from the Lord. Just one word. Christ liberated us from the grip of the law’s curse, which originated from Adam’s actions. Christ accomplished this by assuming the role of a curse on our behalf. Why? So that we may partake in the blessing. Christ’s redemption freed us from the curse of the law, granting us access to the blessing.
Galatians 3:14 So that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith.
It states that through Christ Jesus, the singular blessing of Abraham is bestowed upon us. Do you grasp the significance of this? The blessing is all-encompassing and all-sufficient. The blessing will produce an abundance of blessings. Our prayers are directed towards receiving these blessings.
We fervently pray for financial abundance, restoration, peace, and flourishing relationships. All of these are manifestations of the blessings. However, it is vital to understand that what you truly need is the blessing itself. Possessing the blessing will inevitably yield the fruit of blessings. What does it state? It proclaims that through Christ Jesus, the blessing of Abraham is bestowed upon the Gentiles. Hallelujah! Are you a Gentile? If you do not descend from the lineage of Abraham, then you are indeed a Gentile. Do you comprehend? It is so that we may receive the promised Spirit through faith. What exactly is the blessing of Abraham? The blessing of Abraham is none other than the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. When God initially blessed Adam and Eve, that blessing was embodied in the person of the Holy Spirit.
In Genesis 28, Jacob receives a blessing from his father Isaac. During this blessing, Jacob prays, saying, “I pray that the blessing of Abraham will come upon you, and you will take possession of the land.” From the Old Testament, we understand that the blessing of Abraham granted the patriarchs the power to claim lands. However, it is important to note that the land possession was the result of the blessing, not the source of it. The ultimate blessing that one needs is the promised Holy Spirit. Having the promised Holy Spirit enables one to experience all the fruits of that blessing in abundance.
In Deuteronomy 28, it is mentioned that the Lord will lift you up. But why does He lift you up? How can you experience this elevation? The answer lies in the Holy Spirit. When you are lifted up in the Holy Spirit, all of these blessings will come upon you and overtake you. The true blessing is found in the Holy Spirit. Let’s declare together: “The Holy Spirit is the greatest blessing that I need, and it is the only blessing I need.” When we have the blessing of the Holy Spirit, we have all the blessings we require. There’s no need to pursue mere superficial things. Instead, focus on the substance—the blessing of God, which is the promised Holy Spirit. This is why the day of Pentecost holds great significance. On that day, the Holy Spirit came like a powerful, rushing wind, and everything changed in an instant because the blessing had been poured out upon the people of God.
Everything you are fighting for, aiming for, and longing for is encompassed within that blessing. As Paul states in Ephesians 1: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us.” Even when you don’t perceive it in the physical realm, give thanks to God for the blessing, for you are already blessed in the person of Jesus, who is the promised Holy Spirit. You are truly blessed. This is why Paul emphasizes in Romans 8 that if God did not withhold His own Son, He will graciously give us all things. With Jesus, you receive all things through the Holy Spirit. You are blessed with every spiritual blessing, with all things. It is not a financial breakthrough or debt cancellation that you need. What you truly need is the blessing that will bring about the financial breakthrough. You are blessed. You are blessed. The Holy Spirit is the very essence of that blessing. Once you grasp the revelation that the Holy Spirit is the heavenly gift to your life and that He is all you need, everything in your life can be transformed. What do you need? A financial breakthrough? What you truly need is the Holy Spirit. Seeking restoration in your family? In truth, what you need is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the promised blessing—the blessing that fulfills all your needs.
All of you are blessed. Why? Because you possess the promised Holy Spirit. However, many of us fail to understand how to access this blessing. It’s akin to having a bank account with abundant funds, yet not knowing how to make withdrawals. What good is a bank account filled with money if you cannot access it? Therefore, I am here to teach you how to make a withdrawal. Imagine this with a chuckle. Just as you would approach a bank and make a demand for your money when it is in the account, you must also make a demand to access the blessings bestowed upon you. You need to make a withdrawal. Without making a demand, the resources will remain untapped, and you risk living a spiritually and physically impoverished life. Let us not leave this world in a state of spiritual poverty or financial lack.
When you are blessed with every spiritual blessing, you truly possess every spiritual blessing. Therefore, the issue lies not in lacking blessings from God, for we have indeed received them. The challenge lies in our lack of understanding on how to access these blessings. In times of anxiety, we struggle to access God’s peace. In moments of worry, we fail to tap into God’s joy. When faced with sickness, we struggle to access God’s divine health. However, if we can learn how to access these blessings, we can walk in the abundant life that Jesus promised.
John 10:10 I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
Abundant life is your portion. Allow me to emphasize this: Toiling is not your portion. A stress-free existence is your portion. You do not need more blessings, for you already have the blessing. What you need is to learn how to walk in that blessing. You must undergo training to walk in the blessing.
Repeat after me: “Trained to walk in the blessing.”
Did you know that even a king born in the palace needs to be trained to walk and behave like a king? Despite having the DNA of royalty, he still requires guidance and instruction in various aspects of his life, such as seating, communication, and interacting with people. Every detail of his life is subject to proper training, enabling him to truly walk in his regal identity. Similarly, each one of us is a child of God, a son or daughter of the King. However, we too require training.
But how do we receive this training? How does a king receive training? By enrolling in the School of Kings. You are admitted to the School of Kings and Queens. Training is what you need. You already possess the DNA of royalty, but what you need now is training.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God[b] may be complete, equipped for every good work.
All scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training. Notice the word “training” there. Scripture is the means through which you receive training. Scripture is how you get trained. And it is in training that you are able to access the blessing that God has blessed you with.
Scriptures are necessary to train yourself, and through this training, you will learn how to access the blessing. Who embodies the blessing? The Holy Spirit. In the Holy Spirit, you have everything.
Psalms 1:1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers.
Have you ever pondered the definition of “blessed”? A blessed person is one who is happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable. If you struggle with the fear of envy, then embracing the calling of a blessed person may be challenging for you. You see, when you are truly blessed, people may feel envious of you.
If you are blessed, people may envy you. However, if you cannot handle the fear of being envied, it may indicate that you are not meant to be a blessed individual. Lord, grant me that blessing, if it is Your will. Now, who exactly is considered blessed? A blessed person is one who does not walk, stand, or sit in the company of the wicked. What is the underlying message here? It emphasizes the importance of avoiding certain influences in order to allow the overflowing blessings from the Lord to manifest in your life. To ensure that the blessings bestowed upon you by the Lord overflow, it is crucial to resist the negative influences of the world.
Remember, you are in this world, but not of this world. Therefore, it is important not to allow yourself to be influenced by the world. Instead, your purpose is to positively influence the world around you. However, if you succumb to the influences of the world, it can become a significant problem. So, avoid being swayed by the world. The first piece of advice is to refrain from walking in the counsel of the wicked. Be cautious about whose counsel you seek and follow. Reflecting on your life, you might be surprised to discover areas where you have listened to the advice of wicked individuals, which could be contributing to your current circumstances. The blessed individual is the one who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked. It’s essential to recognize that everything around you has a voice and is constantly speaking to you.
When Jesus cursed the fig tree, it is noteworthy that He responded to the fig tree as if it were communicating with Him. This illustrates that everything has a voice and is constantly speaking to you. Even the chair you are currently sitting on has a message for you. Your circumstances and your bank balance also convey messages to you. Therefore, it is crucial to exercise caution regarding whose advice you choose to heed. In the Garden of Eden, when God came to meet Adam, He asked Adam where he was. Adam replied, expressing his fear and awareness of his nakedness. God’s immediate response was to question who had told Adam that he was naked. Adam had not been aware of his nakedness until someone informed him of it. There are certain things that we are not meant to know. Let us affirm together, “There are things that I shouldn’t know, and God is protecting me from knowing them.” For instance, it is not necessary for me to be aware of the exact number of people who have lost their lives due to COVID-19.
I don’t need to know what is a new variant that is coming. There are certain things that you don’t need to know. Don’t unnecessarily educate yourself. Do not walk in the council of the wicked, be careful what you entertain the news that you listen to the people that you fellowship with. They’re all speaking into your life. Be careful. If you walk in the council of the wicked, it’ll choke the blessing and you will not see the blessing. Even though you are blessed. So do not walk in the council of the wicked.
The next thing is, do not stand in the path of the sinners. Do you know what it means? Do not stand in any sinful opportunity. Meaning do not stand in the way of temptation. Temptation. Let me see how much temptation I can resist. Don’t do that. You’re not called to resist temptation. You are called to resist the devil. Flee from temptation. We do the opposite. We resist the temptation. Flee from the devil. But the Bible says, flee from temptation. Resist the devil. So do not stand in the way of temptation. If you see that you are standing in a path that leads to temptation, flee, run away, don’t entertain.
Proverbs 4:14 Do not enter the path of the wicked, and do not walk in the way of the evil.
Avoid it. Do not go on it. Turn away from it and pass on. Don’t even entertain it. Move on. If you, if you know that this is leading somewhere where it is not supposed to lead you into, run away from it. Don’t try to see how much your level of faith is. Don’t do all of that nonsense. If you know that it is leading towards temptation, just run away. Flee from it. If you know that opening the laptop at a particular time is going to cause something, switch it off. Go to sleep. Don’t be like the power of Jesus has indeed empowered me. Let us not engage in such nonsense. You are well aware of yourself and the patterns in your life. Therefore, it is crucial not to position yourself in the way of temptation.
Another point to consider is to avoid sitting among scoffers. Do you understand who scoffers are? They are individuals who find fault in every solution. No matter the positive news or progress, they will always highlight the negative aspects. They may even present their views as wisdom.
Proverbs 14:6 A scoffer seeks wisdom in vain, but knowledge is easy for a man of understanding.
Proverbs 15:12 A scoffer does not like to be reproved; he will not go to the wise.
I don’t wish to label anyone as a scoffer, but if you refuse to accept constructive criticism or guidance, it may indicate tendencies of scoffing.
Proverbs 13:1 A wise son hears his father’s instruction, but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke.
Such scoffers do not heed rebuke and yet they present themselves as wise individuals. This is because they possess the ability to identify problems in every solution. Even when you share good news with them, they will respond with negativity and find fault in it. They mock and dishonor others without showing any respect. For instance, if someone gets promoted, they will come up with reasons to belittle that achievement. Similarly, if someone experiences healing, they will undermine it by attributing it to mere medication. These scoffers consistently find flaws in positive news and reject any form of correction.
The key lesson to take away from this is the importance of not allowing oneself to be influenced by the world. Instead, we are called to be agents of positive change and influence in the world. By succumbing to the influences of the world, we risk stifling the blessings intended for us. To allow blessings to overflow in our lives, we must clear away any obstacles, just like clearing a pipe of dust particles to ensure the free flow of water. It is essential to refrain from being influenced by the world and to recognize the areas in our lives where we have entertained the counsel of the wicked. The Holy Spirit can reveal these avenues to us, enabling us to say no to such influences and choose godliness and holiness. Let us pray that the Lord sheds light on these areas in our lives so that we may recognize and reject wickedness.
The fear of the Lord marks the beginning of wisdom and knowledge. Have you ever wondered what exactly the fear of the Lord entails? According to Proverbs 8:13, it encompasses hating evil, pride, arrogance, and any form of perverted speech. To fully grasp this concept, let’s delve deeper into its meaning. Growing in the fear of the Lord requires us to align our hearts with God’s, loving what He loves and despising what He despises.
For instance, let’s consider sickness. You passionately detest sickness, not because you harbor ill will towards sick individuals, but because God Himself detests sickness. By harboring a fervent disdain for sin, you maintain a clear stance. There is no room for compromise or turning a blind eye. Grace, undoubtedly, plays a crucial role in our salvation. God’s love for us is unwavering, but it is equally important to nurture an abhorrence for sin. Allow yourself to experience a genuine revulsion towards any wickedness you encounter. Do not justify or downplay it. Instead, embrace a resolute attitude of hating everything that opposes God.
In essence, loving what God loves necessitates hating what He hates. The concept does not accommodate shades of gray. It demands an unwavering commitment to righteousness. It is a choice between light and darkness, good and evil. Does that make sense? Don’t be swayed by the world; instead, have an impact on the world.
Psalms 1:2 but his delight is in the law[b] of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.
His true joy lies in following the teachings of the Lord. He finds no pleasure in associating with the wicked or succumbing to temptation. Material wealth does not bring him joy either. Rather, his delight stems from studying and reflecting on the Lord’s commandments day and night. Thus, his happiness derives from God’s word, not the opinions or wisdom of others. This is expressed in John 17:17, where Jesus prays, “Sanctify them by your truth. Your word is truth.” Here, truth refers to reality. So Jesus prays for us to be set apart in God’s reality, for His word embodies truth and holds a reality reserved specifically for us. By immersing ourselves in God’s word, we transcend our circumstances and enter into the reality revealed in His word.
That’s why he emphasizes that his delight, his pleasure, does not stem from the opinions of people. It is not contingent upon favorable or unfavorable circumstances. Instead, his pleasure is derived from God’s word. Your own pleasure should be founded on God’s word as well. It should find its foundation in the truth revealed by God. When he speaks of meditating on the law day and night, it implies a continuous state of awareness. Throughout the day, you cultivate your sensitivity to hearing God’s voice through spiritual disciplines such as prayer and reading the Scriptures. You develop an awareness of listening to God’s voice. However, it also means that regardless of whether it is a good day or a bad day, your focus remains fixed on the unchanging reality of God’s truth. It is unfortunate that some of us only turn to the Lord in prayer during times of hardship or challenges. When faced with storms in our lives, we fall to our knees and seek to pray, but during times of ease, we tend to forget the Lord.
Whether you find yourself in a season of abundance or a season of darkness, it is crucial to meditate on God’s word. Within His word, there exists a reality that encompasses righteousness, peace, and joy. Despite your circumstances, you can tap into this reality. You need not be swayed or consumed by the external factors around you. There are individuals who tend to amplify their suffering, as they take pride in their difficult upbringing or impoverished background, highlighting their lack of food or challenging circumstances in their village. However, it is important to remember that our focus should be on the truth and reality found in God’s word, rather than magnifying our struggles.
Sometimes, when we amplify our suffering, we lose sight of the profound truth conveyed in God’s word. Let us reflect on Paul’s message in 2 Corinthians 4:17. This verse provides us with a valuable perspective on our present circumstances. Repeat after me: “For this light and momentary affliction, regardless of what challenges we face today, we must acknowledge that it is indeed light, momentary, and an affliction. We should refrain from declaring our struggles as insurmountable burdens. Instead, we must recognize them as fleeting and insignificant in comparison.”
When Paul penned these words, he was addressing a group of Christians who endured intense persecution under the Roman Empire. To them, he offered this reassurance: their personal hardships were but a fraction of the tribulations endured by others. So, let us not declare our suffering as significant, but rather regard it as this light and momentary affliction. What more does Paul convey?
Paul further emphasizes that our present struggles are incomparable to the eternal weight of glory that awaits us. It is crucial to shift our focus away from the visible, transient aspects of life and instead direct our gaze towards the unseen, eternal realities. Regardless of how dire our current circumstances may appear, we must remember that they are temporary in nature. Therefore, let us anchor ourselves in the truth revealed through God’s word, as it grants us access to the everlasting glory that awaits us. Instead of dwelling in the suffering of our present circumstances, we ought to tap into the boundless glory offered by the word of God. This is why it is vital for us to find delight in His word and engage in continuous meditation day and night.
The first and most crucial point is prevention and precaution. Do not allow yourself to be swayed or influenced by the values of the world. Avoid associating with wicked individuals and refrain from engaging in tempting situations. Do not partake in the company of mockers who disregard God’s word and treat His kingdom with disdain. It is of utmost importance to be vigilant and not succumb to the influences of the world. Develop a deep reverence for the Lord and detest anything that is considered evil according to the teachings of the Bible. Wholeheartedly reject and despise such evils.
Additionally, shift one’s focus and find pleasure in something different. Instead of seeking validation and pleasure from the opinions of others, redirect your delight towards God’s word. Discover the reality and truth that lies within God’s word, which can provide solace and strength regardless of the challenges you may be facing.
Psalms 1:3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.
Verse 3 speaks of a profound transformation that occurs when one follows the previous instructions. It compares such a person to a tree firmly planted by streams of water, consistently nourished and thriving. This tree bears fruit in its designated season, and its leaves remain vibrant and healthy. In all endeavors, this person prospers and experiences success.
By steadfastly resisting the world’s influences and redirecting your delight towards God’s word, you will undergo a remarkable transformation. The concept of being “planted” here implies a significant relocation or translocation. In other words, your circumstances and location will be shifted, similar to being transplanted. For instance, if you are battling an illness and choose not to heed the opinions of those who lack wisdom, but instead focus on what God’s word says about healing, you will experience a profound change. You will be uprooted from the grip of sickness and placed by the life-giving streams of water, gaining strength and vitality regardless of the circumstances you face. By changing your delight and finding joy in the Lord’s word, you will undergo a transformative process of being transplanted.
In the superior reality, you will be transplanted from your current inferior state to a realm of abundance and prosperity. Imagine a picturesque landscape, with a lush green environment where you are like a tree firmly rooted by streams of water. These streams represent a constant source of nourishment and sustenance for you. Even in times of drought and famine that may plague the land, you will remain unaffected. How is this possible? Because you are planted by the streams of living water, ensuring your resilience and vitality.
Moreover, just as a tree bears fruit in its designated season, you will consistently experience abundance and productivity in every phase of your life. Regardless of economic downturns or challenging circumstances, rest assured that God will provide for you abundantly. Your life will be fruitful because of your unwavering connection to these life-giving streams.
Additionally, your growth will be unhindered, and your vitality will not wane. Like a tree with vibrant, evergreen leaves, you will never experience withering or stagnation. Your life will be marked by continuous flourishing and freshness, with no signs of decay or dryness.