DIVINE PROVISION: WHEN GOD SAYS NO
God’s power knows no boundaries. Everything was created by God and he has the power of dominion over His creations. But He is a Mysterious Being Whose ways cannot be determined. God does whatever HE likes and is therefor, described as the Unquestionable God. The Lord has His principles that are not negotiable. If you do your own part and keep His commandments, God will move to fulfil His promises. Only in rare cases would God allow those who belong to Him to be disgraced as he has a way of showing up miraculously, like when He ordered Father Abraham to sacrifice his own son, Isaac. A narration by the General Overseer Worldwide of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor E.A. Adeboye in one of his ministrations point to the fact even when you are in God’s will and walking in total obedience to God; you can still run into problems. Challenges confronted have made many believers back out when they are closest to their breakthroughs. God will always test you before He gives you a higher assignment. Unfortunately, some have backed out to God’s will, assignment or instruction because of such problems.
When God gives you an assignment, you must expect challenges because immediately He makes the pronouncement, Satan starts to put obstacles on your path to make the mission fail. God promised the Israelites that they would expand phenomenally when they left Egypt. But immediately God spoke, Satan started raising horns to make the fulfilment impossible. You must expect Satan’s challenge whenever you set out to do God’s will. In fact, if you never get such a challenge or opposition over the particular project or mission, it is doubtful if God is in it. According to Pastor Adeboye, ‘’The more important your assignment is to God, the more Satan will attack it with every weapon at his disposal. He admonishes that winners don’t quit. If you both had the assurance that God was in it from the beginning, jointly combat the forces and you will overcome. There is no easy road to success.
But Adeboye is always quick to point out that the power to overcome the devil and its cohorts is not automatically conferred on a believer. According to him, “no matter how many ministerial licenses, certificates and identity cards you have, without the spiritual identity cards that come from the Holy Spirit, you are not prepared for what God wants to do with you. Demons do not honour certificates or big titles. All they look for is the fire. If they can see the fire, they will leave, not because you said so, but because if they refused to go, the fire will roast them. Every believer should be able to cast out demons. But unfortunately, contemporary ministers and senior pastors either shy away from this or struggle endlessly with one demon. It is because there is no fire. But why do you have to cast out demons? One reason is because they are usually the unseen manipulators of unpleasant events and circumstances. They are couriers of sicknesses particularly those that cannot be diagnosed by scientific gadgets and tests. They are also avenues by which Satan monitors people and effects generational curses on family lineages. If you discover there is a demon at work in a given situation, leave the physical enemy and rebuke, paralyze and cast out the spirit behind that situation
WHEN ‘NO’ IS OKAY
Do you get despondent whenever God fails to answer your prayers especially if you belong to him? Do you look at people who don’t belong to God but are successful in life? It is always better to rely on God for all your requirements because successes recorded outside the agenda of God cannot last long. God has His reasons for saying NO to the requests of His children. The Holy Bible admonishes believers to: “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you” (Matt. 7:7). Although God’s Word never fails, yet it is possible to pray based on Scriptures and not get a desired answer. An ordeal of Pastor Adeboye is worth recalling here: ‘’In the 70s, I used to go for retreats with some Bible study leaders at a youth camp that obviously was the most promising, conducive and serene Christian camp ground in Nigeria then. With over 40 acres of land, the camp was endowed with a smooth flowing stream and beautiful scenery that adequately provided comfort to users. When we heard that it was out for sale for 100,000 Pounds, you need to imagine how my team converged on the land to pray! We quoted relevant Scriptures, did prayer walks on bare feet and claimed the land for our use. We were so poor that we could not afford 1,000 pounds”. But in spite of all the prayer and effort that went into it, says Adeboye, “We lost the land to another church that acquired and paid for it without stress. Boy, we were disappointed, discouraged and cast down! Unknown to us, God had other plans-even better than what we desired. According to James 4:3, we were asking amiss.
He continues: ‘’About five years later, the Lord expressly led us to our current camp ground at the Mowe Headquarters of RCCG, Ogun State. We bought it amidst tears of joy and gratitude. It was then it dawned on me that when he said ‘No’ to our earlier request, it was because he had something better in store for us. It is not every time God’s ‘No’ means ‘nothing for you’. It could mean ‘This is not good enough. Wait until I take you to yours’. Have you been trusting God for a particular blessing for so long? You have prayed, confessed the word, stood on his promises and released your faith yet it appears God is not hearing; be not discouraged! God is interested in that request but it could be that what you are crying your eyes out for is not good as what he has in mind for you. This is one reason you should be totally yielded to his will. Are you bent on marrying that brother or sister and God appears silent on your request? He may have someone better for you! Ask God to help you never to pressurize him to the point of giving you something below his best. Anytime your desire is below God’s provision, ask receive a ‘No’ for an answer. That is when ‘No’ is okay”.
This narration tells us that even when you are in God’s will and walking in total obedience to God; you can still run into problems. Some believers, says Adeboye, “have had no doubt if God was still in something they started within God’s will because of the challenges they faced on the way. Unfortunately, some have backed out to God’s will, assignment or instruction because of such problems. You must expect Satan’s challenge whenever you set out to do God’s will. In fact, if you never get such a challenge or opposition over the particular project or mission, it is doubtful if God is in it. The more important it is to God, the more Satan will attack it with every weapon at his disposal. So, be not discouraged once you are sure that your assignment has received divine approval. There is always an appointed time.
MESSAGE: DR. D.K. OLUKOYA
The world is indeed a complex place to reside in, particularly considering the flurry of spiritual activities going on unnoticed by the ordinary eyes. It is possible tor the enemy to be already inside without the knowledge of a person. This message by Pastor D.K. Olukoya is titled: “When the enemy is already inside”
Ephesians 4:27 says, “Neither give place to the devil.” It means that it is possible for somebody to allow the enemy into his or her life. And if you give place to the enemy, he will definitely stay. That is why the passage says, “Do not give place to the enemy.” Many people are looking for their enemies outside. Unfortunately, the enemy is already inside. James 4:7 says, “Summit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” It means that if you do not resist the devil, he will stay with you. 2 Corinthians 2:11 says, “Lest satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.” It means that if you are ignorant of the devices of satan, he will take advantage of you. Ignorance is no excuse in the spiritual world. If you do not have knowledge about the devices of the enemy, he will take advantage of you.
Going by current events, it is clear that our generation is living in the dark. We have many beautiful and powerful inventions but most of them are being turned around to destroy people, including those who invented them. It is clear the enemy has really worked hard to promote ignorance even in the church of God. Unfortunately, the words of Jesus are still ever true today: “Men love darkness rather than light, because their own deeds are evil” (John 3:19). Nowadays, among Christians there are many prodigals who are living in the midst of swine. There is also a slow satanic brainwashing going on now among Christians. Many Christians are gradually getting used to darkness. Ignorance is being promoted. Little by little, many churches are making sin to appear very light. Gradually, things like fornication and adultery are being swept aside. There has never been so much darkness in the minds of men and women than now.
Indeed, the end time is here. The crime wave is mind boggling. Television sets have introduced Sodom and Gomorrah into every sitting room. Many people who call themselves Christians are grieving the Holy Spirit because they do not want to offend the wicked. They do not want to be seen as peculiar and strange people. Many believe that merging with darkness can change darkness. If they are not careful, they will be the ones that will be changed. The early church did not dim their light to match the world in which they were living. A good study of the Acts of apostles reveals that everywhere Paul went, he was troubling the powers of darkness. Beloved, in your place of work are you known as a Christian? Perhaps you know how to sing praise worship songs but your lifestyle does not portray Christ. It is a tragedy. We need to pray hard because many people are looking for their enemy outside but the enemy is already inside. When the enemy is already inside, many things go wrong.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO GIVE PLACE TO THE ENEMY?
A classic example is when an individual gives place to the enemy by allowing any sin a foothold in his or her life. According to Dr. Olukoya: ‘’Many years ago, a certain brother was brought to church for prayers. He had a very strange sickness. He fell sick anytime he got to the examination hall to write an examination. He could write any other thing without any problem but not examinations. When he was brought to me, the Holy Spirit said he had given a particular sin a foothold in his life. But if he confessed it, he would be free. I told him what the Lord said but he said, “No! No! By the grace of God, I am born again, sanctified, baptized in the Holy Spirit, and living a pure life.” I said, “That means the Holy Spirit is lying.” He said no. By the time we prayed, the Lord revealed what he was doing. He had a next door neighbour who was a fornicator. Anytime he was in the act, the brother would go to the keyhole and be peeping to watch him. I confronted him with that and he said, “Yes sir, you are right sir.” Here was a man who claimed to be born again and sanctified, peeping into the room of fornicators. But immediately he confessed the sin and got broken down in the spirit, his hands stopped shaking during examinations. ‘’Many people are looking for the enemy outside but the enemy has already entered inside’’
Therefore, give no room to sinful conducts so you will eternally remain on God’s side. It is horrible for any believer to be deserted by God. 1 Samuel 15 shows exactly how God abandoned king Saul as a result of disobedience. ‘’To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king.” 24 Then Saul said to Samuel, “I have sinned. I violated the Lord’s command and your instructions. I was afraid of the men and so I gave in to them. 25 Now I beg you, forgive my sin and come back with me, so that I may worship the Lord.” 26 But Samuel said to him, “I will not go back with you. You have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you as king over Israel!” Remember that each time the Lord gives you an assignment, He has a ready substitute in case you prove arrogant or heady. May the Spirit of God never depart from you.
What next? If you are yet to give your life to Jesus Christ as your Lord and Personal Saviour, I enjoin you to do so today and join the End Time Army of Christ prosecuting the agenda of the Great Commission. The resurrected Jesus Christ DIRECTED His disciples to spread his teachings to all the nations of the world, before departing for Heaven. Matthew 28:16-20 states that: ‘’Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely, I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
ADMONITION: Please go to the nearest Bible believing church immediately and ask a pastor to lead you to Christ. Heaven is real; and hell too, is real.