THANKING THE UNIVERSE

img_9098

The universe is popularly defined as all of space including the stars, planets and other forms of energy and matter in it. In Genesis 1, we have the account of creation. This account shows that God created everything that has existed, everything that presently exists and everything that will exist.

But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. 2 Peter 3:10

And the Lord will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion,
and upon her assemblies,
a cloud and smoke by day,
and the shining of a flaming fire by night:
for upon all the glory shall be a defence. Isaiah 4:5

All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. John 1:3

It actually baffles me when people who profess Christ follow the idolatrous trend of worshiping the universe. This extends beyond thanking the universe. People pray to the universe and make requests and supplications to the universe.

One thing is certain, the universe and God are not the same. God is supreme. God created the universe. The universe would not exist if God did not create it.

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. Revelation 4:11

When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers,
the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; Psalm 8:3

Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. Hebrews 11:3

By the word of the Lord were the heavens made;
and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. Psalm 33:6

Why would we rather worship creatures (created by God) than God Himself? This is idolatry.

Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshiped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. Romans 1:25

Take a bit of time to ponder on the verse above (Romans 1:25), write down what it means to you.

Remember this, all things were created for God’s glory. None of God’s creation is to be worshiped- not even angels.

In his hand are the deep places of the earth:
the strength of the hills is his also.
The sea is his, and he made it:
and his hands formed the dry land.
O come, let us worship and bow down:
let us kneel before the Lord our maker. Psalm 95:4-6

the interesting thing with the above scripture is that after acknowledging God’s creation, God is worshiped- not the creation.

But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee;
and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee:
Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee:
and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee.
Who knoweth not in all these
that the hand of the Lord hath wrought this?
In whose hand is the soul of every living thing,
and the breath of all mankind. Job 12:7-10

The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Psalm 19:1

For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Romans 1:20

The universe cannot save you. Only God can. Can God work through the universe or its elements? Yes! Because the universe in its entirety was created by God, God can control and use them as He pleases. The universe can do nothing to warrant your praise and worship. However, God deserves to be praised, worshiped, adored and magnified.

Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. Matthew 4:10

If you usually thank and worship the universe or any other creation of God, you can stop today.

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32

Now that you know the truth, you can pray for forgiveness. Ask God to forgive you for the sin of idolatry.

I am the Lord: that is my name:
and my glory will I not give to another,
neither my praise to graven images. Isaiah 42:8

And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

Prayerfully ask God to help you alter your speech- for those who are used to saying ‘bless the universe’ ‘thank the universe’ ‘thank heavens’ etc. You could simply just say ‘Thank God’ after all, He alone is worthy to be praised.

Maintaining the ‘Gold Standard’

wp-1483122354084.jpg

 

I am not one for new year resolutions because I never keep to them but as I grow in the Lord, I know for sure that I want to know him more and more and to live for him in the best way possible.

Our just concluded annual camp meeting was a fantastic time in God’s presence and I taught my first youth seminar class on ‘The Religion of Rehoboam’. This lesson got me thinking about how so many Christians let down their standards. I know for sure that I do not want to go down that path!

The story in I Kings 14:25-28 is pretty simple, Rehoboam inherited the throne after the death of his father, Solomon. In that time, Shishak the king of Egypt defeated Israel in war and all the golden vessels in the temple which Solomon made were taken away. Rehoboam replaced the stolen golden vessels with vessels made of brass.

Rehoboam could not keep up the golden standard. Gold is really valuable. Remember Solomon built the temple not by his wisdom but according to God’s specifications. Brass looks a lot like gold but is not gold, it is man-made. Brass shines like gold but is a substitute religion of men that cannot buy salvation. Brass signifies man’s religion which is noisy, cheap, does not regard God’s commandments and revelations. More so it operates by an ‘it does not matter’ ideology where there is really no standard.

It is common to see salvation being substituted for church membership, Joy in the Holy Ghost is being substituted for entertainment, the word of God is being substituted for slangs and motivational speeches, volume is also being substituted for quality. It is important to note that salvation, holiness,sanctification, repentance, heaven and the Holy Ghost cannot be substituted.

If with all your religion, you are not washed from your sins then what you have is substitute religion (Read Proverbs 30:12-13).

We must:

  • repent and be saved
  • receive the grace of God
  • sins must be washed away not covered
  • the two eternal options are heaven or hell and there is no substitute
  • resurrection into life or judgement which cannot also be substitute

The above options are pure gold and should not be substituted for brass irrespective of what the worlds thinks or says. In Proverbs 23:23, the Bible says we should buy the truth and not sell it for anything. Do not let down your standards for anything. In your walk with God, strive for gold and not brass.

This is how I plan to approach 2017. I will not let down my standards like Rehoboam did, I will not be a weak Christian and above all, I will contend earnestly for the faith!!!!! This is my only goal.

How do you plan to approach 2017? Do you have goals?

Purposeful Worship

It is actually routine for me to constantly check my phone in church. Like many other areas of my life the Holy Spirit is working on, I’ve had a nudge about my “bad habits” in church. 

For someone else, this distraction may not be a phone. During worship, are you fully focused on the ONE you are worshipping? Does God have 100% of your heart and mind or do you wander off to problems, family, finances etc.

In Leviticus 10:3, it is apparent that God has to be glorified in our worship. For this to happen, our hearts and minds must be set on Him during worship. ‘Loose worship’ eventually leads to spiritual death.

I will urge you to attend a church where you get a proper sermon, an in-depth study of God’s word. Do not be in a hurry to leave God’s presence, devote time to God, it is the very least you could do.

Come to think of it, it is pointless to physically show up in church when your mind is elsewhere. 

Dear Lord, I thank you for your Word, teach me to worship you purposefully and wholeheartedly. I bind every satanic distraction that prevents me from being focused in your presence. Forgive me for neglecting you and create in me a clean heart. Help me to worship you in spirit and in truth, In Jesus’ name. Amen