This may very well be a question you ask yourself. David, though a Warrior and King, needed his Shepherd…👇🏾
The Children of Promise Romans 9:6-8
It is by God’s sovereign will that a person obeys God. God’s divine mercy is God’s divine method of salvation.
The descendants of Abraham believed it was their sovereign right to inherit the promises of God, but Paul said, not so, and showed them otherwise. Through scripture we see that God shows mercy and compassion to whoever He wants. God is the ultimate authority in His choices and decisions and this cannot be contested or altered by any human.
The children of Promise are not the children of the flesh, but those who are called by the Spirit of God. God’s desire is not the will of man, but His own Sovereign will. It can not be forced or manufactured. God’s purpose of election stands, according to His sovereign choice.
God will show mercy to whoever He desires, by His sovereign will and choice. Those who are chosen are called by God’s sovereign will and choice.
He is God Almighty and He does as He pleases.
“My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” Matthew 26:39
Jesus Prayed at Gethsemane:
Jesus remembered you when He prayed to the Father at Gethsemane. Though Jesus was very sorrowful and troubled in His spirit, He faced the burden placed on His shoulders with Prayer.
The guilt and sin of this world imputed to Jesus, weighed heavy on His shoulders. Jesus went through so much agony in His soul, yet He was resolute not to turn back from God’s will. He would not shrink back. Jesus prayed for support and strength.
Praying in times of trouble:
Whenever satan tries to fill your heart with sorrow, remember the “Man of Sorrows,” our Lord Jesus, has passionately prayed for you. He has paid the price for you. The trouble of the past is neither your portion or future, remember Christ wept for you. He took away the burden of sin from you.
The Holy Spirit with you:
Jesus prayed whenever He was grieved in spirit, you should pray also. The Holy Spirit is the Comforter and Jesus has promised His presence to all who believe in Him, at all times. You are not alone, but have the Holy Spirit to encourage strengthen and support you, every step of the way. (John 14:15-16).
Jesus Prayed at Lazarus Tomb
Jesus wept. He was deeply moved in His spirit and greatly troubled when He saw Mary weeping. Her brother Lazarus had died. As Mary knelt at Jesus feet in anguish of heart, the entire neighbourhood gathered around her in sadness. It looked like a hopeless situation.
The Compassion of Jesus
Jesus was moved with compassion for Mary and Martha and all who wept at the tomb of Lazarus. Jesus weeps with compassion for all who are going through diverse situations today. He is concerned for His Church, His people and all that happens to them. Though Christ is a King and the Son of God, He is also the son of man, ever aware of our sufferings and pain, because He went through suffering and so much more.
A Deep Relationship
There is so much to be gleaned from this story, but I must narrow in on the deep relationship between the Son and Father. This is seen in Jesus’ Prayer at Lazarus Tomb. It is clear that the prayer for Lazarus did not begin at Bethany in Judea. It began as soon as Jesus knew, by the Spirit of God, that Lazarus’ spirit had left his body…
Abiding in Prayer
Our relationship with the Father should be deep, personal and abiding. God desires a personal relationship with all His children. The relationship Jesus has with the Father is the same all Christians should seek to have. There is power in the name of Jesus and His power is released through prayer. Let us not breeze in and out of God’s presence, but truly rest and abide with Him like Jesus did.
© Ruth Dickson
Why Pray? Jesus PRAYED!
The priority of Prayer in the life of a Christian can never be understated.
The greatest example of one who prayed is Jesus Christ. Despite His majesty and authority, He led a prayer-filled life. Jesus did nothing without consulting the Father. In times of distress and before making important decisions, Jesus prayed.
As Jesus grew, His fame grew. As a young child, He entered a synagogue, preached a sermon and astonished all who heard Him. As Jesus increased in wisdom He drew crowds. While many followed Jesus out of curiosity, others followed because they believed He was the Messiah. There came a time when Jesus had to make an important decision.
“Many are Called, but few are Chosen.”
Despite the fact that Jesus had hundreds of people following Him, He still had to make the choice of a specific number. These would be the ones who would take His Commission forward after His departure. It was far from an easy decision.., not one Jesus could make in the flesh. He needed the help of the Spirit. The fact that Jesus was the Son of God did no deter Him from approaching the Father for instruction. It is a privilege to speak to the Father, it is an honour to gain access to the One who knows all things and searches the hearts.
What is it that hinders an intimate relationship with the Father?
When a child does something wrong, naturally the parent will notice a change in the child’s demeanour. There is nothing hidden from God and this is why repentance is importance. Unconfessed Sin is a great hinderance. You must have faith in Christ’s sacrifice, that He has paid the penalty for Sin, enabling you to boldly approach God’s throne of Grace. Remember, He is God Almighty and you approach Him through His Son.
Praying at all times.
Every believer in Christ has this amazing privilege: to come before God’s throne of Grace.
Jesus often walked away from the crowds and retreated to quiet places to pray to the Father. He prayed immediately after victory. He prayed in times of weakness. He prayed to the Father all times. Jesus relationship with the Father was His priority. Whether you feel weak, or strong, in the place of Prayer, remember you are praying to the One who can help you. He has given you a garment of praise, instead of a spirit o despair. Praise God for who He is, despite your circumstances or situation. You have a God who wants to meet with you, personally, in the place of prayer! Amen.
© Ruth Dickson
Praying “at all times” in the Spirit.
What does it mean to, Pray in the Spirit” and to Pray at all times, “in the Spirit,” to be specific.
Christians in general have different interpretations of what, “praying in the Spirit” means. Praying in the Spirit could be seen as praying while speaking in tongues. It may also be seen as praying in silence, while in deep communion with the Spirit of God, who gives utterance. In which ever way praying in the Spirit is interpreted or misinterpreted, one thing for sure is that praying in the Spirit means prayer that is led by the Holy Spirit. It is prayer that is dependent on the Power of the Holy Spirit. It is praying according to God’s will.
Jesus prayed in the Spirit
Jesus set the pattern of how Christians should pray. Jesus led a life of prayer, indeed, He prayed at all times. Jesus knew how to step aside from everyday life, and go into lonely places, to pray. It was through prayer that He was able to conquer the tempter satan. Jesus prayed early in the morning, at times throughout the night. He was truly a living example for the disciples and for all Christians today. Prayer teaches us to submit to God’s will, as Christ did at Gethsemane.
Paul’s Closing Words
Paul spoke about the importance of Prayer in his closing words to the Ephesian Church. Prayer is the tool that fastens all parts of the Christian’s Spiritual Armour together., “Pray at all times, in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication,” (Ephesians 6:18). Paul encourages every Christian to pray at every opportunity and pray during every season.
When we pray in the Spirit, we pray according to God’s will. It is a time to seek God’s face, will and purpose and ask Him to see it through, according to His will and divine timing. Praying according to God’s will gives confidence and assurance. The weakest person is uplifted and strengthened, when prayer is made, according to God’s will. Prayer is not about how long or how loud you can pray, but praying, according to God’s will.
The sincerity of the Gospel holds up all parts of the Christian Armour. Praying according to God’s will is of utmost importance. When you pray according to your own will, you pray amiss. This is why it is crucial to seek God’s face to establish the truth before interceding about any matter. Is what you are praying about true? Intercession based on fiction will not yield any results. God’s Word is established upon Truth.
Paul encourages us to stay alert and persevere in the place of prayer and not grow tired. “To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints.” The Christian is to be selfless in prayer, also remembering the needs of fellow believers while praying.
Paul encouraged the Ephesian Church to pray for him, as he encourages the Church today to pray for its spiritual leaders; to be led by the Spirit in their prayers, “that words may be given to me.” The Church is also to pray for the Spirit of boldness in declaring “the mystery of the Gospel.”
If prayer can be led by the Holy Spirit, prayer can also be led by the Flesh.
The opposite of Praying according to the Spirit, is praying according to the sinful desires of the Flesh. Prayers not authorised by the Spirit of God, will not be answered by the Spirit of God.
The Spirit of God teaches us how to pray. In the place of prayer we are strengthened, just like Jesus was strengthened during His time of testing and temptation. In the place of prayer we receive instruction. In the place of Prayer God’s plans are established. In the place of Prayer, God’s enemies are defeated. In the place of prayer we receive consolation and help, Christ is an ever present help in times of need. In the place of prayer, we are liberated and set free.
Wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty! (2 Cor.3:17)
© Ruth Dickson
The Helmet of Salvation.
Soldiers wear Helmets to protect the Head. Paul used this part of the Soldiers Armour to show how the Christian is to protect the mind.
Life on earth is not a game, it is a war zone and Paul wrote encouraging the New Testament Church, as He encourages every Christian this hour, to wear The Helmet of Salvation as a Spiritual covering for the mind.
The Bombardment of the Mind.
The enemy is poised to bombard the mind of the Christian with thoughts about everything else, except Heaven. The Christian should be on guard at all times. The Head contains the thinking cavity and Proverbs reminds us to guard our thoughts because they are the source of true life (Proverbs 4:20-23).
The Helmet is to Protect the Head.
Wearing this crucial piece of Spiritual Armour, the Christian is reminded to set the heart on things that are above and not on this world. It is a Helmet of hope to all who wear it. They know they have an expected end.
Spiritually Dressed for Heaven.
The Christian who wears the Helmet of Salvation enjoys the security of knowing they will not stand naked, but well dressed, wearing the garments of Salvation before God.
© Ruth Dickson
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The All-Protecting Shield of Faith
A Shield is a buckler, a broad piece of metal that protects from danger and darts. A Shield comes in many shapes and sizes, but the Shield the Christian carries is large enough to protect every part of the body.
At whatever angle the enemy comes against the Christian, the Shield of Faith is big enough and strong enough to resist the onslaught. The head, heart, waist, arms and feet all parts of the Body are covered by this one Shield, the Shield of Faith can be described as the Shield of Shields.
The Helmet of Salvation; the Breastplate of Righteousness, The Belt of Truth, The Sword of The Spirit, The Shoes to spread the Gospel of Peace are the spiritual graces the enemy targets. But the Child of God must not succumb, retreat of surrender, rather march forward with the Shield of Faith.
The Children of Faith are not afraid to be separate from the world. They are not ashamed to be called Christ followers and take a stand. They are not afraid to speak in the face of opposition, sin and unbelief. To them, God has given the divine gift of Faith. The Christian will be battle-tested, so therefore should be battle-ready at all times. What is the crack in your spiritual armour that the enemy will attack? Learn to identify this through prayer.
Doubt is one of the enemies of the soul. The Christian should never doubt the promises of God, but feed on God’s Word. Whatever trial the Christian faces, the Shield of Faith provides adequate protection. Without Faith, it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:1), so be encouraged child of God, raise your spiritual shield of Faith today. Amen
© Ruth Dickson
Put on your Shoes and Spread The Gospel.
Beneath the shoes of a Roman Soldier were short and sharp nails to keep the feet sturdy during combat. These nails kept the footwear in place and stopped the Soldier from sliding all over the place. Paul used the metaphor of shoes to show how Christians are to be ready and prepared to share the gospel. They must stand firm with sturdy shoes to tackle the adversary who does not want the Gospel of Christ to be shared. Psalm 18:33 says, “He makes me as sure-footed as a deer, enabling me stand on mountain heights.”
Before a fisherman goes out to catch fish, he must fully equip himself with all the necessary equipment, but also study how the Sea flows before venturing into it. This is the same way the Christian should rightly divide the Word of Truth (2 Tim.2:15) and prepare to preach to a dark world that is spinning out of control. There is a battle to be fought and the Christian must not be deceived about it. Paul’s teachings help Christians understand clearly that there is a war going. The good thing is that Christ has already gone ahead, giving victory to all who believe in Him. God has given the Christian the Spiritual Armour to win this battle.
In a world where there is no peace, Christ is the Prince of Peace. It is reconciliation to God that brings real peace to the soul. Therefore Christian, be bold and courageous, the battle belongs to the Lord. God has equipped you with every-thing you need for battle. Preach the gospel without fear (John 10:29; Romans 8:31; Romans 8:38-39).
© Ruth Dickson
The Breastplate of Righteousness
The organ of the heart is protected by the Breast Plate. Paul used the Breast Plate as a Metaphor. He compared the Soldiers Breast Plate to Righteousness. The heart is a vital organ. Though the heart and internal organs are not seen, they need protection. There are evil forces that rage against the heart everyday, desiring to take control of it. Christ has liberated and delivered the Believer from these forces in order that all who believe in Him may serve Him in righteousness.
The body cannot function without a heart, it is an indispensable organ. The Breast Plate of Righteousness covers the area of the heart, which is vulnerable, keeping it clean and healthy, liberating the believer from sin. Righteousness gives power over sin. The Word of God reveals the Righteousness of God, just like the Soldiers Belt (Truth) upholds the Breastplate (Righteousness).
Christ our Righteousness:
The former pattern of life, with sin as a domineering fellow, is broken by the believers union with Christ. That former relationship with sin ended in Christ, giving freedom to serve Him in righteousness.
Grace reigns through righteousness to eternal life through Christ (Romans 5:21). Every Believer has a unique and distinct identity in Christ. Grace reigns through this union with Christ and no other… so put on the New Man.
You are no Longer a Slave to Sin…
Romans 6:6 reminds us that the old-self is crucified to sin. If you are in a relationship with Christ you are liberated… Liberated from all that you were in Adam.
© Ruth Dickson