Open Heavens Daily Devotional August 22, 2017
Topic: The Church of God …1
Memorise: And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all. Ephesians 1:22-23
Read: 2nd Thessalonians 1:1-12 (KJV)
1:1 Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
1:2 Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
1:3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;
1:4 So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:
1:5 Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer:
1:6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you;
1:7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,
1:8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
1:9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;
1:10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.
1:11 Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power:
1:12 That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
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Bible in one year: 1st Chronicles 1-3, Ezekiel 28:25-29:9
MESSAGE: The Church is a body of saints being prepared as the Bride of Christ to be married to Him at His second coming (Ephesians 5:25-27). It is also a spiritual body of which Jesus Christ is the Head (Colossians 1:18). The Church of God is the meeting place of God and man, created as a means of uniting all people with God and with one another. The manifold wisdom of God, His mysteries, His nature, character and His attributes are revealed through His Church. Among all of God’s creatures, He did not find any of them worthy to be His dwelling place. However, He specifically designed and built His Church to be His dwelling place: a place of His rest. God cherishes His Church so much that He showers much care on her, and through her, He spreads Himself across the face of the earth.
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In Matthew 16:18, the Lord decreed that the gates of hell shall not prevail against His Church; consequently, the Church of God is served by the ministry of angels (Hebrews 1:14). It is the only institution on earth that angels pay attention to as a matter of duty. The angels of God dote on His Church and admire her beauty (1st Peter 1:12). It is the only institution on earth which the angels of God take interest in, and every bit of progress that the Church makes in this world brings joy to them and causes them to celebrate (Luke 15:7). If you have not given your life to Christ, you can cause the angels of God to rejoice today by accepting Jesus as your Lord and personal Saviour, thereby becoming a member of the body of Christ, which is the Church. As a member of the Church of God, you are expected to continually express your love for God in worship and practical service, which includes enduring hardness, afflictions and tribulations for the sake of God’s kingdom. Always remember that Christianity is not bread and butter alone. Despite all the good promises of God to you, Jesus, in John 16:33b, also says to you,
“In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
God’s attention if focused on His Church, and as a result, the devil can never prevail against you. However, you must learn to endure afflictions, and you must confidently confront evil. You must not be ashamed or afraid of witnessing for Jesus. Always be mindful of the fact that the Holy Spirit is in you and the angels of God are at your service wherever you go.
Prayer Point: Father, in Jesus’ Name, please give me the grace to endure hardship, afflictions and tribulations for the sake of Your Name.
Open Heavens Daily Devotional was written by Pastor E.A. Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God.