Prayer Dynamics

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                                      Rev. E. Anderson

THE DIVINE PREREQUISITES TO ANSWERED PRAYER

God does answer prayer but stipulates that certain factors must be existent in the Christian believer for this to continually occur. It is imperative to know what they are and see that they are present and so meet divine approval.

THE VITAL DIVINE PRINCIPLE OF FAITH

If prayer is to be effectual and influential then divine faith must be present and active.

It is noticeable that faith is an all important factor in the experience of salvation and conversion that brings into a state of perfect justification before God – Romans 10: 8-10. God’s Word makes it perfectly apparent that “without faith it is impossible to please God” – Hebrews 11: 6

1/. CHRIST TAUGHT THAT FAITH IS A MUST IF PRAYER IS TO BRING GREAT RESULTS – Mark 11: 19-24

There is a no point in praying over anything unless there is a real faith in God as to His being and His extraordinary and miraculous power. This must be really considered before prayer is resorted to. Do I believe God is interested and willing to act in relation to what is to be prayed over?

2/.CHRIST SOUGHT TO CREATE AND CULTIVATE FAITH IN HIS DISCIPLES

The Christian master and teacher was forever seeking to nurture divine confidence in those whom He called into special relationship with himself. He knew that if they were going to make a valid contribution n to His cause and kingdom and if prayer was to become meaningful and powerful then this must be in place. Unbelief gets nothing whatsoever so it is imperative that faith be present and active.

3/. CHRIST EXEMPLIFIED FAITH HIMSELF AND SET THE EXAMPLE IN PRAYER

He never taught that which He did not put into practice and operation himself ina perfect and absolute manner. It is possible to gain a great deal of inspiration and encouragement from Him alone in relation to prayer and the things that came through this ministry. He could testify: “Father, I thank You because that You have heard Me. And I know that You hear Me always” – John 11: 41, 42. It is important to be in the spirit of faith where we know we always have the ear and hand of God on all matters at all times.

4/. CHRIST GIVES THE FAITH TO THOSE WHO ARE PREPARED TO LET HIM LIVE WITHIN LIFE AND CONTROL

One of the main reasons why he comes to take up residence within those who believe in Him and receive Him is that faith may be a dynamic factor and force within them. Paul could say: “the life I now live I live by the faith of the Son of God” – Galatians 2: 20. Inspired by this divine principle, it governed him in all matters, especially prayer. The same kind of faith that Christ had is yours because He lives and works in you.

5/. CHRIST SHOWS THAT FAITH IN PRAYER IS CAPABLE OF EXTRAORDINARY ACHIEVEMENTS

He sought to show that if real believing prayer was existent and exercised then it was capable of producing incredible results. There is the illustration of moving a mountain from its secure place and being transported into the sea just to illustrate the potency of believing prayer. Elijah unquestionably proved the power of believing prayer in his ability to control nature. Prayer is linked with the bring to pass of the miraculous. God just loves to prove His authority and ability through the believing prayers of His people and servants.

CONCLUSION

Before prayer is engaged in it is essential to know whether there is any genuine, divine believing over the things to prayed.

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Sermons of Note

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                                     Rev. E. Anderson

MOVING ON INTO GOD’S BEST

 

Reading   Joshua 1 

Text          v2

Introduction

OPPORTUNITY:  There comes the time and opportunity in the affairs of the Christian Church and communities when God gives the apt and appropriate moment for greater movement to secure the greatest things. This being so, one has to be wide awake, sensitive and immediately ready for belief and action.

“Do not suppose opportunity will knock twice at your door”        –           Chamfort

It needs to be known and felt in a high degree that ‘this is the Church’s Finest Hour.’ Whatever has been has gone. It is what is about to be wrought and written that matters as far as heaven is concerned and God wants you to be an inspiring and integral part of the proceedings.

GOD-VISION: The Lord is ever desirous of giving a vision both of Himself and all that He wills to accomplish through those who are prepared to receive and implement His will and purposes. This is the basic consideration to be known and accepted if we are to move ahead. Let it be asserted and accepted, never is the want on His side of things. He is changeless in this. To those who are prepared to get to know Him, He will communicate a perfect, full and glorious understanding of His Person, with all of His attributes. He will follow this up with what He actually desires to achieve, through very ordinary channels prepared to respond to His ways and plans. He is not minus an agenda for His Church in this generation, and this means very much at a community level. This is where He sets His mind and objective and if such a body can lay hold of this, things of enormous significance can and will be wrought out.

CHURCH READINESS: The vital thing is for the body of Christ to be on its feet, fully prepared and on the blocks ready for take of. If the best is to be moved in upon with and through God then all the stuff that gathers to prevent the take off and the drive must be eliminated at the personal level. In Numbers 13 Israel stood on the brink of their finest hour of moving into the best that God had planned but everything became subverted and destroyed because of prevalent unbelief. So there are dangers that can present themselves at such a striking hour that must be known and avoided. They must be highlighted so that we know what we need to be delivered and preserved from. Any one and anything can be an impediment to all that is to be effectively and successfully achieved for and through God. It is not so much the enemy without that is the major problem but thoughts and attitudes within that can turn out to be the menace.

  • The danger of becoming stuck whilst en-route, just being carried along with the rest and when the challenge comes not being ready. One can be there and not there; or be here and not here.
  • The danger of being familiar with God’s presence and not being really affected by it.
  • The danger of disillusionment because of the journey taken thus far that has been a period of trial and probation. Hardship can wear people down and thin instead of making them bold, strong and defiant. They are not able to discern the meaning of the way etc.
  • The danger apathy and indifference in spite of an amazing past with its major deliverance and provision.
  • The danger of not being fully conscious of the divine destiny to be brought to pass.
  • The danger of frustration and fear taking over instead of allowing faith to rule the spirit and action.
  • The danger of not being too happy with the road that God has brought you up to this point.
  • The danger of merely looking at people and problems.
  • The danger of losing the plot – what we are here for.

If you are to move into God’s best then it will inevitably be by the way of challenge. There are things of such a nature that confront that seek to provoke to faith and daring and as they are tackled aright become stepping stones into a great future. The things that defy evoke an inward spirit of defiance that overcomes every obstacle and opponent.

But there would be many divine encouraging signs to stir and stimulate so that there will be an accomplishing of the divine ends. They had so much going for them to enable them to lift up their feet and into advancement and forward movement. What was their lot is ours so that we, too, can march ahead to the divine goals.

1/. THERE WAS THE PERFECT TIMING OF GOD IN THE MATTER

 

Joshua and the people knew that this was the choice, divine moment for the fresh movement. The NOW factor was an important consideration in what was about to take place. There are two ‘now’s’ in Joshua 1: 1, 2 “Now after the death of Moses . . .” and “now arise, go over this Jordan . . .”. It was the Lord speaking into the immediate circumstance and highlighted that this was the exact hour for fresh endeavour and enterprise. As far as He was concerned, He was the God of the present, interested in the present, and desired that His people accomplish something in the present. 

They were not to postpone or put off for a future day but respond at once to the divine summons. All hesitancy, reluctance, delay, indecision and uncertainty had to be dismissed because this was the thing that God and they had been waiting for. All procrastination had to be terminated and the desire and will to move be the predominant in mind and mood.

“Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it.  No idleness, no laziness, no procrastination; never put off till tomorrow what you can do today”     –       Chesterfield

“The keen spirit seizes the prompt occasion”          –           More

2/. THERE WAS A NEW AND FRESH SPIRIT AMONGST THEM

It is apparent from the context of the chapter that there was a very good, healthy spirit among the people because the reaction to what God was saying was instant. There was a new breath of air manifested amongst the new generation that had arisen and they were prepared to make positive commitment to what was being revealed. The spirits of the people had been remarkably changed and Joshua witnessed the fact that the spirit that had been in Caleb and in him was now actually present in all the people. 

There was an infectious and contagious attitude prevalent that they could not afford to let go off because of what was occurring now could be lost, and they must be totally ready for whatever the Lord had in mind. All the unbelief was gone, the murmuring had ceased, the will to look to God alone and worship Him was predominant and this provided the basis of a new history to be recorded of specific note.

“The opportunity is often lost by deliberating”          –         Syrus

The Lord has choice ways of bringing the people to a state of pure spiritual renewal where they are in the right sort of temper and attitude to embark upon the most adventurous phase of their existence. Instead of wallowing in defeat and despair and of things have done, there is the will to press ahead.

3/. THERE WAS AN INSPIRED DIVINE LEADERSHIP PRESENT

A change had taken place that the people recognized as being determined by God and the one who was to lead the way was now in his divinely appointed and anointed situation. They were happy and in one accord with the decision of God and sensed that the right move had been made on their behalf. 

He had served a successful apprenticeship and had been willing to submit to his predecessor and to God in everything. Worthy and notable traits of character and commitment had been manifested. Faith, courage and consistency had marked his previous years. There had been the will to seek God for himself and to honour Jehovah in all matters besides seeking the interests of the people at all times beyond his own.

“Faith is kept alive in us, and gathers strength, more from practice than from speculations”              –                  Addison

“It is not faith and works; it is not faith or works; it is faith that works”   –    Anonymous

The people were ready to back him to the hilt and said so – Joshua 1: 16-18. They avowed their allegiance and let him see their wholehearted and unreserved commitment to God and him. He had knowledge and experience and the will to see the best procured.

4/. THERE WAS THE EVIDENT PRESENCE OF THE DIVINE COMMANDER

One of the essential emphases in moving forward into the best means that the Lord will be amongst His people top give assurance and to give direct lead in the operations. He is not to be present merely as a ‘silent listener to the conversations’ or bystander to what is happening, but is to perform in a very active role and making His mind and plans clear.

Moses was conscious of this fundamental fact, that the people or he were going anywhere unless the Lord was present in a powerful manner directing proceedings – Exodus 33: 15-17. There could be no adequate substitute or replacement for the Lord. All human personalities, communities, denominations or agendas could not serve as sufficient replacements or cover for the Lord.

This leader was soon to discover how essential this fact to the whole going forward and the occupation of the Promised Land. As he goes out to review the job of taking Jericho he immediately realized how impossible this major task was from a human standpoint  – Joshua 5: 13. This stronghold was there to confront and defy, and strategist, military man that he was, he knew that he had no plan or answer in himself to see this city defeated and destroyed – Joshua 6: 1.

The Commander in Chief of heaven and heaven was not without a plan or power to bring about the destruction of Jericho. Having made Himself known to Israel’s leader – Joshua 5: 13- 15, He then proceeds to give Joshua a line of action that would work. It was not a human strategy but one that came direct from the Lord and would achieve the desired result – c.f. Psalm 103: 7; Isaiah 55: 8, 9. God’s servant was now to be initiated into the Lord’s way of doing things.

5/. THERE WAS TO BE THE IMMEDIATE TOKENS OF CONFIRMATION

In making their response, the Lord was going to give all the necessary evidences of His presence, plans and power. They would not be left questioning and wondering, because there would speedily be all the vital tokens that would sign and seal everything. They could rest assured there would be action on His part to make it obvious that He was in real business with them.

  • There would come the miraculous crossing of Jordan paving the way into the Promised Land – Joshua 1: 2; 3.  Many of the people had not witnessed the crossing of the Red Sea when God cast up a highway through the waters. That was a past event. But the Lord was now to show and prove that He was still up to the job of making roads through waters.

“There is no great future for any people whose faith has burned out”     –       Jones

“There are no miracles to men who do not believe in them”       –            Anonymous

The great ability of God is always to make ways where there are no ways. This is a basic understanding that must be noted in relationship with Him and in definite progress. He sometimes seemingly keeps His servants and people waiting but He always possesses the answer to sorting and smoothing out the way ahead.

  • There would be the miraculous devastation of Jericho, the first major city en-route that would give a vision and foretaste of what was to be on a larger scale – Joshua 6.  The taking of this formidable stronghold right at the entrance was to be a major lesson of faith and instruction to what was to be their experience in the whole encounter and possession of the land.

6/. THERE WAS TO BE THE PREVALENCE OF THE PROPHETIC WORD

This was to be a most heartening and stimulating factor and feature. The prophetic word is the in word of the Lord into the immediate current situation and shows that He is full cognizant and abreast with all that is occurring.

  • Their feet were to tread new ground and cause them to be possessors and owners – Joshua 1: 3. Only as they moved out and forward would the prophetic word become the fulfilled word. The divine message was that they were about to become real landowners of what had been divinely promised.
  • Their mind and heart to be set on something major and not minor  – v4. Bigness and not smallness was to possess their considerations for what lie ahead. God had a big vision for them to be brought to pass and they needed to embrace it right away.
  • Their spirits must be possessed with a tremendous sense of courage because no matter how strong and formidable the powers that be that stand arrayed they will fall and fail – v5. All faintheartedness will be dissipated as they witness the fall of the most powerful enemies.
  • There had to be constant reference to the written word vv7, 8.  The prophetic word did not negate the recorded word as given in the Law but showed its relevance and importance. In faith and obedience to what God has already spoken and taught, they would be able to move ahead safely, surely and successfully.

CONCLUSION

There are things that have been settled and finalized by God but at the same time there have to be things that are settled and finalized by us if things are going to really occur as God has purposed.

  1. Are you sensitive to the fact that this is your appointed time and hour for God’s great end time purpose to fulfilled in and through you? – Esther 4: 14.
  2. Are you quickened in spirit enough and full of faith and courage to take the adventure with God and with others of like mind to obtain the special objectives ordained of God?
  3. Are you ready to know the omnipotent presence of the Lord and to respond to His written Word more faithfully and to be open to what the Lord is to say prophetically

“Achievements ordinarily follow in due course when a person, after planning his work, works his plan ”          –   Bowman

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Powerful Quotes

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                                  Rev. L. Goodwin

GOOD QUOTES

 The only fool bigger than the person who knows it all is the person who argues with him

A drowning man does not complain about the size of a life preserver

Blessed is he who, having nothing to say, refrains from giving wordy evidence of the fact

Luck: a loser’s excuse for a winner’s position

 Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain

God plus one is always a majority!

Whoever gossips to you will be a gossip of you

Jesus is a friend who knows all your faults and still loves you anyway

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Past Illustrious Men and Ministries

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                                    John Calvin

JOHN CALVIN

On the 500th anniversary of the birth of the great protestant reformer John Calvin, Elim minister Julian Ward describes Calvin’s life and impact on the Christian faith

The man who transformed everyday lives of Christians.

John Calvin was born at Noyon in Northern France on 10th July 1509. About the age of 13, he went to Paris University to study the arts and then from 1528 he studied civil law at the University of Orleans and later at Bourges (Bruges), at which time he became an admirer of the great Renaissance humanist Erasmus.

He returned to Paris to study literature and became well versed in the ancient Greek and Roman philosophers. He also got to know the writings of the German Protestant reformer Martin Luther.

Around this time he experienced what he called a ‘sudden conversion’ and immediately devoted himself to theological study. In 1533 Nicholas Cop, the new Rector of the University of Paris, gave an address, generally thought to have been composed by Calvin, which promoted the teachings of Erasmus and Luther and attacked the spiritual degeneracy of the theological faculty.

Due to the reaction it provoked, Calvin fled Paris and eventually moved to Basle in Switzerland, where he published the first edition of his Institutes of the Christian Religion, in which he addressed King Philip I of France as a plea to end the persecution of Protestants in that nation, Its six chapters expounded the Ten Commandments, the Apostles’ Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, the sacraments and Church government.

While passing through Geneva with the intention of going to Strasbourg in July 1536 Calvin was asked by Guillaume Farel, the leader of the reformers there, to assist in organising the Reformation in that city. Calvin was reluctant, but Farel uttered an imprecation that God would curse Calvin’s intended retirement from public life when the need of the hour was so urgent, This disconcerted Calvin so much that he agreed to stay. In 1537 Calvin and Farel drew up articles regulating the organisation of the church in Geneva and its worship. But this provoked strong opposition to the imposition of a creed and ecclesiastical discipline on all its citizens. On Easter Day, 1538, Calvin publicly defied the city’s council’s explicit instruction to conform to the religious practices of Berne, and he and Farel were order to leave the city immediately.

So Calvin withdrew to Basle to resume his studies. But the Protestant pastor of Strasbourg, Martin Brucer, urged him to go there to minister to the small congregation of French refugees. Brucer threatened him with the example of God’s judgment on Jonah and so Calvin reluctantly agreed to go.

Calvin also took part in colloquies between Prostestant and Roman Catholic theologians. In 1539 Calvin publish a second edition of his Institutes, enlarged to 17 chapters, a commentary on Romans and an influential defence of Reformation doctrines in a letter to Cardinal Jacopo Sadoleto, who was endeavouring to persuade Geneva to return to the Catholic fold.

But in Geneva the state of the church was deteriorating. In desperation, the city council of Geneva invited Calvin to return to the city. Calvin was appalled at the prospect, fearing what the outcome might be, but his sense of duty prevailed and he reluctantly accepted the invitation in September 1541 , He spent the next 14 years in establishing a Protestant state with a measure of democracy, despite much hostile opposition, and in writing a vast quantity of literature,

His Ecclesiastical Ordinances were adopted by the city council in November 1541; these distinguished four ministries within the Christian Church: pastors, teachers, elders and deacons, Ecclesiastical discipline was placed in the hands of 12 elders and some pastors, which sought to enforce morality through the threat of temporary excommunication. This provoked a popular reaction, culminating in the victory of an anti-calvin party in the city elections of 1548. The difficulties in Calvin’s public life were compounded by personal tragedy when his wife died in 1549, and by increasing ill health.

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Dave’s Snippets

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                                   Dr. David Allen

TOP OF THE POPS AT 92

 

Ninety-two year old Dame Vera Lynn’s CD entitled The Very Best Of Vera Lynn has shot up to the top of the list of bestsellers; and  some stores have run out of stocks  more than once. The reasons for this phenomenon are varied and not difficult to understand 

For one thing, it is seventy years since the outbreak of World War II and the collection of songs hark back to that time and the songs are an important part of those commemorations. In addition, musically speaking – especially older folk – have no liking for modern pop music with its thudding, insistent drumbeat and its lyrics that seem to make no sense at all.  Sadly the same thing can be said about much of the music which is often   passed off as “worship” in some of our church services and celebrations. What has happened is what one commentator has called the corinthianisation of the church. And that process can be applied far wider  than  music alone: morality and standards in public life have both suffered in the last several decades: excessive bankers’ bonuses, and  some of our  members of parliament greatly abusing  their “expenses”, to say nothing of the obvious slide in sexual morality and  the consequent weakening of marital fidelity.

Going back to Dame Vera’s current amazing popularity, it may be too easy to see it merely in terms of pure nostalgia – and nostalgia is very often a case of selective memory.  But I think it is more than that: the songs evoke a world where the family and where   discipline, duty, loyalty and honesty all mattered. Sadly all this has virtually disappeared.  But I am not in despair, because there are signs of hope.  Many people, including some who would not regard themselves as Christians, are beginning to realise that only God can make the difference.  And very recently an avowed atheist has said:  I am not a believer, but I do believe that only faith in God can make any real difference in our broken society.”  There is, I think, “a rustling in the mulberry leaves” and my prayer is “Revive your work in the midst of the years!”           

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Just a Thought by the late Rev. A. Linford

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                                       Rev. A. Linford

TOMORROW IS ANOTHER DAY

 

“Sufficient unto the day …..” – Matthew 6:34

Don’t overload today with tomorrow’s agenda. ”Manyana” may seem a way out of trouble, but we cannot debit today’s grace to tomorrow’s account. “As thy days so shall thy strength be”, promises all we need to fulfill each day’s demands. Delay not to fulfill the ”now” routine, then we may sincerely and deservedly enjoy the ”then” rest. Be like Longfellow’s Village Blacksmith.

”Each morning sees its task begun  Each evening sees its close”

On the other hand, do not burden today with tomorrow’s demands. Careful planning may often be necessary but carking care that loads us with woes to come, will destroy our peace. Anxiety is a killer, worry is lethal. More people have died under tomorrow’s load than those that have borne the heat and burden of today. Tomorrow is another day. Let its cares rest until a new dawn arrives, then we meet it fresh with grace that is renewed to us every morning – sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. Don’t knock the scales of life off balance by a surplus of tomorrow’s demands.

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Wisdom’s Ways

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                                        Rev. A. Linford

Rev. A. Linford, before his decease, was recognized as a good, great and interesting Bible teacher in the Assemblies of God Fellowship for many years. He was a well-loved Bible College lecturer and writer that bequeathed a tremendous amount of Biblical material in his generation. What a legacy he has left to be researched and brought forth to refresh our day! We shall be using such on this site: His writings from the book of Proverbs and also his Editorials that he wrote for the Redemption Tidings when he was its editor. I trust you will enjoy and appreciate

MORAL STRENGTH

”The way of the Lord is strength to the upright” – Proverbs 10:29-30 

How constantly is the dichotomy of mankind upheld in this remarkable book! “The upright” and “the workers of iniquity”, “the righteous” and “the wicked” are again set in contrast with each other. Their present experiences are poles apart the future destinies eternities apart.

The strength of the upright: ”The way of the Lord” is capable of two meanings. First, it may signify the road that God walks, that is, His dealings with men. Or, as Andrew Maclaren has it, ”the solemn footsteps of God through creation, providence and history”. Secondly, it may mean the road in which God would have us tread. But why not both? The upright man walks in the footsteps of Jesus – 1 Peter2:21, and ”keeps in step with the Spirit” as Galatians 5:25 may be translated. Vast potentialities are in God; if we live compatible with His will, those potentialities are released – and we are strong. It is like the output Of a radio station beaming out voice and vision. This becomes ours if we tune in to the same wave-length. By faith we can tune in to God; upright living keeps us on Heaven’s wave length. But the workers of iniquity are not so: they miss out on living and go on to soul-destruction. Their ways are the ways of death.

The stability of the righteous: “The righteous shall never be removed”. They are emotionally stable, they do not suffer from those violent disturbances that unbalance the minds of those who deny God. They are intellectually stable. With hearts fixed on God, with minds full of His word, they are not a prey to moral predators who would destroy their faith in holy things. Sustained by sound and healthy doctrine they are not moved by the winds of false teaching or shaken by the philosophies of men. They are experientially stable. They stand firm under pressure, they remain steadfast under fare, they never desert their post. ”And having done all to stand” – Ephesians 6: 13 is an epitome of their service. When the smoke of battle has lifted, they are still in their appointed place. Nothing can shake the faith of one who is firmly planted in God. The wicked have no place in the inheritance of the righteous.

PRAYER :

Please Lord, help me to follow Thy footprints today. Amen !

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Studies in 1 Peter

                                             ernest-024

                                        Rev. E. Anderson

Lecture 4      

Rev. E. Anderson                                                                                                                        

THE CHRISTIAN CONDUCT    – 1 Peter 2:11-25

A/   THE CHRISTIAN LIFE – vv11, 12.

At this point in the letter Peter turns mainly to the practical subject of Christian conduct.  For him, Christianity is the wielding of divine influence in the believer’s own life in the community in which he lives and serves.  Note the term Christian affection  –  ‘Dearly beloved’.  These people were more than just a name and number to the apostle.  Note the term of Christian exhortation – ‘I beseech’.   It is the great God of the universe saying:  ‘I beg of you please’.

Stibbs: ‘There is here a two-fold demand for disciplined and distinctive personal conduct as a Christian.  One half of the demand is negative and private, a demand for abstinence in personal living.  The other half of the demand is positive and public, a demand for behaviour that is openly and recognizably virtuous in the eyes of men’.

1. THE INWARD AND PRIVATE LIFE OF THE CHRISTIAN – v 11

The image that is born to the world can only be good and effectual inasmuch as the image borne to oneself within is good, effectual and true.  In both verses there are justifiable motives and notions for supreme living.

We must pay attention with regard to the condition of our private lives.  The Christian must not forget who and what he is – ‘strangers and pilgrims’.

‘We are more than others (we are born again); we have more than others – (the all-sufficient grace of the Spirit); we owe more than others  (redeemed by the precious blood of Christ); then we ought to be more than others’.

We must pay attention to the passion of our private lives. ‘Abstain from…’ this is not simply a reference to sexual sins.  The word in the NT stands for more than natural and carnal cravings focussed in sex;   it indicates the corrupt and destructive principle of evil within men – Gal.5:19-21.  Weymouth – ‘to restrain the cravings of your lower nature’.

We must pay attention with regard to the contention that takes place in our private lives.  The inward and internal conflict is at a personal and secret level.  The objective of these militant desires is to degenerate and downgrade the soul and bring it to ruin.  Evil strategy about these lusts – Gk  ‘stratenomai’  = to perform military duty  – 1 Tim. 2:4 serve as a soldier.

2. THE OUTWARD AND PUBLIC LIFE OF THE CHRISTIAN  v 12

No man liveth to himself and this is definitely so within the context of the Christian life.  Here Peter reveals a number of things.

Outward life was being scrutinised – implied.  They were being watched whether they realised it or not.  Moffat – ‘bear yourselves uprightly before pagans’.  They care nothing for creed, nor for habits of devotion, nor for our statements as to religious experience, but demand a certain life from the people of  God, and watch for it with an eagle’s glance.

Outward life was being scandalised – opinion.  Christians were evil-doers.  Charges of a slanderous nature levelled – 1Pet.3:16.

Outward life was to be organised – the answer to the false charges was to be demonstrated in the manifestation of a good, commendable life.

‘The strongest missionary force in the world is a Christian life’.

B/    THE CHRISTIAN CITIZEN – vv13-17.

There was evident concern in the apostle’s mind with regard to the Christian believer’s role in this present life concerning outside affairs and duties.  In the matter of citizenship there are

(i)                  The realities to be appreciated.  Christianity is involved in making good, sound Christians on this planet. 

(ii)                The responsibilities to be accepted.  Though the Christian has been made free – v16, that liberty has to be rightly applied. ‘Probable that their there was special emphasis on this:  he is writing to Jews, who had rather lax ideas of their obligations to human institutions in the Gentile world. And were charged by the empire with being ‘bad subjects’.

1/. THE DIVINE DIRECTIVES THAT MUST GUIDE

GOD’S Word in one of its particular functions, is to guide His people in their relationships, attitudes and standards.

The attitude towards all human authority – vv13, 14 TCNT ‘Submit to all human institutions’ -Rom.13:1-7.

The attitude towards all humanity – v17.  Dignity placed upon all humanity irrespective of race, colour, creed, situation or status.

The attitude towards the Christian community – v17.  Companion Bible ‘agapo’  =  ‘to regard with favour, make much of a thing or person in principle’.  In the church we meet as God’s children; we recognise in ourselves something higher than animal and worldly life.

The attitude towards  the Deity – v17.  Awesome reverence!  This is seen in obedience to the directives.

The attitude towards the monarchy – v17.

2/. THE DIVINE MOTIVES THAT MUST GOVERN

If it is true that right principles and attitudes must guide, it is equally true that the best motives must lie at the foundation of all Christian citizenship.

The purpose to please the Lord – v13.  The Christian is the Lord’s man and he writes upon everything –  ‘for  the Lord’s sake’.

The purpose  to do His Will – v15.

The purpose to influence the world aright – v15.

The purpose of showing true servitude – v16.

C/        THE CHRISTIAN SERVANT    vv 18-25

 

An important group of people in early Church – ‘household servants’. 

1/.  THE CHRISTIAN SERVANT MUST RENDER A PERFECT SERVICE

The objective to be secured: to be the ideal servant.  (a) Service respective of attitudes – v18 characterised by (i) Obedience – (ii) reverence  –   (b) Service irrespective of masters – v18. Christian doctrine and principles operate under all persons and conditions.

2/.  THE CHRISTIAN SERVANT MUST RENDER A PERFECT SERVICE THOUGH IT ENTAIL SUFFERING.

He may well be maltreated in spite of his good life of service.  How is he to re-act?  He must be prepared to suffer personally – v19; patiently – v 20; providentially – v 21.

3/.  THE CHRISTIAN SERVANT MUST RENDER A PERFECT SERVICE KEEPING HIS EYES ON THE PERFECT SERVANT.

See his suffering in the light of Christ’s suffering – v 21, they were not deserved – v 22 did not provoke any bitter spirit – v 23, left in God’s hands – v 23, were remedial – v 24,25.  Christ did not fail to reveal how a servant should live and serve.

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Great Stories

                                                 rev-ernest-anderson

                                        Rev. E. Anderson

MAKING ADJUSTMENTS

An old sea captain named Eleazar Hall lived in Bedford, Massachusetts. during the time of the gnat sailing skips. He was renowned, legendary, and revered as the most successful of all sea captains of the day. He worked harder, stayed out longer, and lost fewer men while catching more fish than anyone else.

Captain Hall was often asked about his uncanny ability to stay out so long without navigational equipment. He’d once been gone for two years without coming home for a point of reference.

Eleazar simply replied, “Oh, I just go up on the deck and listen to the wind and rigging. I get the drift of the sea, look up at the stars, and then set my course”.

Well, times changed in Bedford. The big insurance companies moved in and said they could no longer insure the ships if the captains didn’t have a certified and properly trained navigator on board. They were terrified to tell Eleazar. But to their amazement he said, “If I must, I will go and take the navigational courses.

Eleazar graduated high in his class, and having greatly missed the sea, he immediately took off for a long voyage. On the day of his return, the whole town turned out to ask him the question: Eleazar, how was it having to navigate with all those charts and equations?”

Eleazar sat back and let out a long, low whistle. “Oh,” he replied, “it was simple. Whenever I wanted to know my location, I’d go to my cabin, get out my charts and tables, work the equations and set my course with scientific precision. Then I’d go up on the deck and listen to the wind and rigging, get the drift of the sea, look at the stars, and go back and correct the errors teat I had made in computation”.

When I heard that, I prayed, Lord, l want to know You that way. I want to go up on deck, hear your quiet voice in my heart, consider Your eternal Word, and then go back down below and make adjustments to all those fine, logical, scientific plans I’ve drawn up in my head.

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Meet the Christian Ministers

                            MAURICE MOORES

              Rev. Maurice and Glenis Moore

We have been in pastoral leadership for just 8 years at Central Pentecostal Church in Chesterfield. Maurice became a Christian at the age of 16 in the Methodist Church, and Glenis became a Christian as teenager also in the Methodist Church, which is where we met. Maurice has had a variety of jobs – from insurance agent, electrician-salesman to driving for a funeral director. Glenis worked in an office prior to starting a family.
 
 We were married in 1966 and our son Jonathan was born in 1969, followed by Louise in 1974. The greatest joy for us is to see our children following Jesus and serving Him. Jonathan is married to Clare and they have a little boy called Joel. They are both in the New Commandment band – Jonathan playing drums and Clare guitar. They all worship at the Methodist Church in Brimington, Louise is married to Andrew and they have 2 little girls Abigail and Elaenor. Louise plays the piano and is a Sunday School teacher. She also helps out with The New Commandment Band. Andrew helps out with lap top and projection of the hymns onto the screen. They all worship at Central Pentecostal.. Our three lovely grandchildren Abigail Ekeanor and Joel are our pride and joy and keep us young!
 
Our greatest passion is to see church growth – not just in numbers, but unchurched people being transformed by God’s power and becoming strong and healthy in their faith. Maurice enjoys presenting God’s word in a way that even a child of 12 can understand. He also loves walking, music and Cadburys Dairy Milk chocolate! Glenis enjoys teaching young Christians and counselling people. She also loves reading and being with the family. We are trusting the Lord for all things – to take us to the next level of blessing. Praise His Name!

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