We all believe that the Holy Spirit is a person but sometimes it seem we don’t know who He is. Our poor understanding of Him usually stops at “He is a person” but who exactly? What is His name? What is He coming to do? Is He inferior or superior to Jesus?
What you were never told is the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Jesus, He is God’s way of taking residence in us. His name is still Jesus! In this teaching, I will be sharing with you what Jesus said about the Holy Spirit and we will be grasping this truth on a whole new level!
It is not a new revelation, it is just that same ancient words that is ever true. You will also learn how to manifest God’s fullness because you are His instrument of expression!
It’s free! Listen to or download this teaching now!
Whether you are discussing with a friend, a neighbour, a colleague, gone on a date or just kicking off a conversation with someone you just met in the mall, aircraft or elsewhere, you would want to create an impression that leaves a positive memory even if you don’t get to meet again. Unfortunately, we often look towards the popular points like being cognizant of your body language, developing a sense of humour and all of that, they are very great and they matter but there are certain things we tend to overlook and I’d be sharing them with you.
These tips aren’t to help you start up a
conversation but to help you have a healthy conversation and leave a better
impression after a conversation with someone. These tips can help you in most
cases but it is written to address some unaddressed mistakes we make when
getting to know people. Let’s get rolling!
OF CRITICIZING, ASK POLITE QUESTION
During a conversation, people might say
something you seem to dislike and how you react at this point determines the
kind of impression you leave with the person. For instance, if you are a
Christian and you happened to be in conversation with an atheist, you shouldn’t
start judging them or criticizing them using the yardsticks of your faith. As
much as you believe you are following the most excellent way, you shouldn’t
shove it down the throat of someone else. Now instead of saying “Only
fools say there is no God.” Why not ask “why do you believe there is
no God?” Instead of saying “you don’t know anything about
Christianity” why not ask “can you tell me what you know about
When you criticize people unhealthily, you
are judging them and you’re indicating that their reasoning is faulty which
isn’t supposed. Criticism sometimes is mostly unfair, proud people are usually
interested in defending their ego and not truly trying to make another see from
a different perspective. You may not subscribe to someone’s line of thoughts
but you can ask polite questions that only indicates you want to know why they
think that way. It also makes you open for more discussion, it makes the
conversation interesting and of course, it creates more room for both of you to
see from different perspectives.
When it is about getting people to change
their views or lifestyles, criticism is not a way to do it, it has always
proven to fail. Many times, asking interesting questions introduces another
person into thinking from another perspective. It doesn’t matter if you are
conversing with someone who always sounds critical, you don’t have to let
people’s weaknesses affect your strength. Just as a kind act towards a snake
doesn’t stop it from being venomous, other people’s display of weakness
shouldn’t change you!
“Just as a kind act towards a snake doesn’t stop it from being venomous, other people’s display of weakness shouldn’t change you!”
Not all questions are great! You should
always consider asking less critical questions. So, if you are always a
critical person or you don’t know if you’re critical, you may want to consider
these things below:
focusing on what is wrong, focus on how to find the solution. For example, you
are discussing with someone and he says “I took a loan that I couldn’t pay”
instead of asking “why on earth did you have to take such a loan?”
you could consider saying “there will always be a way out. What steps have
you taken to manage your debts?”
throwing the worst of people to their faces, why not ignore their personality
and focus on how they could do better the next time? For instance, you
shouldn’t make statements like “but you weren’t wise enough to have gone
for that loan.” Consider saying things like “we all learn from
situations like this.”
engaging someone in a way that devalues them, you should always add value.
Always think before you talk and ensure your words are exhilarating enough as
this helps build some kind of trust and excitement to meet you again! Instead
of saying “that was a foolish decision” Why not consider words like
“it must have been a tough decision for you but you’ll surely overcome this.”
You have to ensure that you engage people
most positively no matter how foolish their opinions, decisions and actions
look to you. If you can’t offer advice or solution without criticizing people,
then your counsels aren’t relevant to them.
Instead of focusing on what is wrong, focus on how to find the solution.
When you engage with someone in a
conversation and suddenly discover yourself wanting to complain about
something, it could be about their dressing, about their makeups and so on,
divert your attention and look for what to compliment. You don’t have to create
an impression that you are a fault-finder!
You also shouldn’t consider complaining about
yourself, your failures and so on to someone you’re starting a conversation
with, you shouldn’t make it a common part of your discussion with people. Dodge
it as much as you can. The conversation should be neutral, it shouldn’t be
about you anyway! Bemoaning about your failures or complaining about them will
probably make them want this conversation to end fast. It also leaves a negative
To complain means to express dissatisfaction
about something or someone. If you are not satisfied with yourself, you
probably will never be an interesting person in your conversation with someone.
Except you went to meet a counsellor, someone who had requested to know what
you are going, a relative, friend or people in your circles, you shouldn’t
consider complaining about yourself as a way to maintain a conversation and be
interesting. Someone once met an Uncle who wanted to give him some money to
make certain investments but because he came complaining how things aren’t
working for him despite all the money he had invested, his uncle changed his
mind because “nothing was working”.
Complaints will either trigger pity at first
sight or scare that person away. Both aren’t a good thing! While pity shows
someone isn’t happy about what you are going through, they may not likely want
to meet you again because they may feel they don’t have enough capacity to get
you out of those troubles or they just don’t want an extra burden. You can’t
build an interesting personality when you always complain about yourself and
“Complaints will either trigger pity at first sight or scare that person away. Both aren’t a good thing!”
conversation, find something about who you met to compliment on. You may also
do that in a very helpful way. Remarks like “Wow! I like your dress, it
looks super amazing. Red would be great too!”
complaining about your ex to who you are just meeting, consider using words
like “Although it didn’t work out between us because of strong differences, she was the best woman I
had ever met!” People will always estimate how you discuss them with other
people with how you discuss others to them.
complaining about yourself and creating very unhelpful impressions, you can
build a strong personality in people’s mind by using words like “although
I failed at the competition, I realized I am truly a strong and intelligent
It may be okay to complain to people you have
a strong relationship with or those who have expressed willingness to listen to
that part of you, it is wrong to create a negative or weak image of yourself.
Your words may make people find you very good and sincere, yet very weak to
maintain a relationship or handle what they might want to offer you.
“People will always estimate how you discuss them with other people with how you discuss others to them.”
In every conversation, there is usually that
time we disagree with some opinion and views, our response at those times
should be very cautious because we may even be wrong and we may also be threading
roughly on a potential relationship. This is not to say that there aren’t
healthy ways to argue but I don’t think there is any wisdom in engaging someone
you are yet to know well in an argument. Hope you know that an argument is a
verbal fight? Why create such an impression probably on first and second sight?
Instead of kicking off arguments, you can ask
questions that come with “why?” and “how?” This helps you
understand his or her perspective. Consider using words like “why do you
think there is nothing wrong with abortion?” Remember your tone matters a
lot! You must ask as someone who wants to know and you must listen as someone
open to learning. In the end, you may never have to agree and you can always
say “Well, it is like we can’t agree on this because I think otherwise but
I truly appreciate your views and I will make more studies on this so that I
can understand better.” This alone can win you a heart, they will want to
meet you again and they may privately think about your views over and over
Imagine meeting someone just recently and
ended up having arguments about your career, skin colour, your sexual
orientation, your religious views and so on. You wouldn’t want to meet them
again! When it is a public discussion, you shouldn’t be afraid of pointing out
things you believe are lies and you shouldn’t be scared of expressing yourself
without being judgmental; this is because the discussion involves you, someone
else and an audience who you might have an influence on. However, as long as it
is a private discussion, you should consider creating a comfortable environment
that would make him or her want to meet you again. This way, you have more
opportunities to influence him or her.
“Instead of kicking off arguments, you can ask questions that come with “why?” and “how?””
Although gossip sounds like telling stories,
it is simply an unconstrained conversation that aims at reporting about other
people involving details that are necessarily confirmed as true or meant for
the consumption of a third party. Always consider gossip more dangerous than
poisons! Whatever someone will not want you to share with others or whatever
you can’t say about someone in his or her presence, why use it in a
conversation with someone else? Remember, gossiping about people don’t change
them, it doesn’t right their wrongs and of course, it doesn’t make you better!
Wise people will always never entertain someone who gossips about others and
therefore it would be dangerous if you are using gossips to build up a
It is better to end a conversation if it will
only take gossip to keep flowing! In the Bible, one of the wise sayings is
“A perverse person
stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.” – Proverbs 16:28
“Gossiping about people don’t change them, it doesn’t right their wrongs and of course, it doesn’t make you better!”
Sometimes gossip isn’t what happen between
two noisy people who talk too much, it may also be what happens between
professionals and learned people who gossip in a way that even makes it sound
like they are concerned about the fellow they are talking about. No matter how
concerned you are about someone, don’t gossip about them, especially to someone
you are kicking off a conversation with. Sometimes, we find ourselves gossiping
about a mutual friend, our siblings, a business colleague and so on. It may
even sound gentle in this manner “I truly appreciate John, but he is a
womanizer. It is giving me concern. Don’t tell anyone about this… I heard
three women have had an abortion for him. I am just concerned.” As caring
as this sounds, it is dangerous.
never earn you a single trust and nobody will want to have anything to do with
someone who will likely discuss them with another person in a bad light. When
you gossip about Mr A to Mrs B, Mrs B will always believe you’ll likely discuss
her with Mr C and therefore Mrs B may never want to meet you next time.
about someone will always make you appear worse no matter how you try to make
yourself appear good. Although the person you are talking to may appear to be
paying keen attention to you, they are already considering you a potential
threat. It is always obvious that people who talk about other people’s mistakes
are simply using it to cover up their own worse behaviours.
talking about someone perhaps in a bid to communicate a lesson or make a point,
consider making up your own stories with your characters without leaving any
clue whatsoever that will link it to someone. You don’t even have to say “I
will tell you about someone you know too well but don’t ask me who she
“Gossiping about someone will always make you appear worse no matter how you try to make yourself appear good.”
You don’t have to be calm about it or pretend you are cool with it. When someone you are starting a conversation with begins to gossip someone else, be sincere enough to tell them how you don’t like talking about other people. You don’t have to sound judgmental but you have to be serious! When you entertain gossips, you’ll eventually talk about others but when you avoid it, you are also setting a good example for whom you are just meeting and they would likely give you credits for that later.
When you realize a discussion is swiftly taking a turn into gossip, try to change the topic immediately. There are lots of things to discuss that shouldn’t be about gossiping people.
When you are asked a question about someone, consider answering it in the best way it protects that person’s interest! If what they are saying is true, it doesn’t matter, it is still gossip! Defend who they are talking about and when it is not true point out the lies.
“When someone begins to gossip someone else, be sincere enough to tell them how you don’t like talking about other people.”
the death of Jesus, He made a promise to go away and prepare a place. Is that
still so? Is He making many mansions ready for us? Are we entitled to a flat,
semi-detached house, a room, a skyscraper or a mansion? How ready are you
getting for the house? Will you be coming with your properties or will Jesus
ensure each house gets furnished?
I’ve got a news flash for you! Jesus isn’t preparing a place for us anymore.
The place is already prepared. He isn’t building mansions as we were taught,
the place He already prepared for us is Himself! Let’s do a little study:
“In My Father’s house, there are many dwelling places (homes). If it were not so, I would have told you; for I am going away to prepare a place for you. And when (if) I go and make ready a place for you, I will come back again and will take you to Myself, that where I am you may be also. And [to the place] where I am going, you know the way. Thomas said to Him, Lord, we do not know where you are going, so how can we know the way? Jesus said to him, I am the Way and the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father except by (through) Me.” – John 14:2-6 AMPC
before His death said He was going away to prepare a place, it was a pre-New
Testament promise because He didn’t say this after His resurrection, He never
implied it again. When He said He was going away, He was talking about His
death. There was a place in the Kingdom of God, that place wasn’t for the
unsaved and by the salvation made available to us by the death and resurrection
of Jesus that place became available for anyone who is in Christ Jesus. Look
very well and notice He said: “I will come back again and will take you to
Myself, that where I am you may be also”. This greatly reveals to us the
place Jesus was talking about, He was referring to Himself as the place being
made ready for us because only in Him can we truly be with God. He is the place
for the believer!
Jesus further said, I am the way, the truth and the life! Now get this very
clearly, Jesus being the way doesn’t mean He is the road to the place! Being
the way here implies that He is the point on entrance into a brand new life and
He is also that life. Being the truth implies that He is the reality of that
place and being the life implies that He is the “making-alive” of any
man. There is no other way to access the father because He is the father (John 14:9-10).
that when He said He will be back, He wasn’t talking about what we call the
“Second Coming”, He was referring to His resurrection and ascension!
We aren’t expecting diverse mansions in heaven, Jesus is big enough for every
one us. No wonder we are seated with Him in the heavenly places. Jesus said He
will take us to Himself so that we can be wherever He is. No wonder the Bible
“And He raised us up together with Him and made us sit down together [giving us joint seating with Him] in the heavenly sphere [by virtue of our being] in Christ Jesus (the Messiah, the Anointed One).” – Ephesians 2:6 AMPC
is our present reality and not even about rapture! We are joined together with
the Lord and we have become of one Spirit with Him! (1 Corinthians
way, we were raised up together with Him and was made to sit down together in
the heavenly realm because we are inside of Him as our dwelling place.
are not expecting any other mansion better than Jesus! He is our home! We may
not know the level and the height of the beauty of this place in Christ where
we are. We will get to know this when the flesh wears off! Jesus wasn’t talking
about mansions and buildings when He said he was going to make a place! He was
talking about making homes for us and He is our home for in Him we have our
dwelling place and in Him we find rest!
it no longer relevant to think that Jesus is still preparing a place for us in
heaven, He isn’t building new houses neither are there any angelic contractors
who had been delaying in finishing the buildings. Remember, Jesus said He is
preparing a place, not places! He is that place which has been prepared by the
reason of His death, burial and resurrection! The Bible says in Act 17:28
“For in him we live and move and have our being.”
believer isn’t struggling to make heaven at last, the believer is in Christ
already and the believer is currently functioning from the heavenly sphere! We
have joint seating with Jesus because we are in Him already! While there are so
many dwelling places in the Kingdom of God, Jesus prepared a specific place for
us! This place is a place even the Angels and 24 Elders
aren’t dwelling; they have their place and that’s why Jesus said there are many
places. But the specific place Jesus made for us is Himself that we may dwell
where He dwells! We are seated on the same very seat where Jesus seats by the
virtue of us being in Him.
this why we pray in the name of Jesus (John 14:13)? To pray in His name as I wrote many
months ago is not just to have a routine of ending our prayers with “in
the name of Jesus”, it means He has given us His own authority, it means
He has placed us exactly on His own stead. This means to speak like Jesus! When
we pray, we aren’t praying through Jesus, we are standing in the place of Jesus
to talk! To pray in the name of Jesus means to stand by His own authority. And
the Bible says “as He is, so are we in this world” (1
this understanding, I believe you are set for the extraordinary!
Dating and courtship are two different things but cannot do without the other. In every courtship, dating is part of its activities. On the contrary, not every dating is based on courtship. According to Wikipedia Encyclopedia
“Dating is a part of the human mating process whereby two people meet socially for companionship, beyond the level of friendship, or with the aim of each assessing the other’s suitability as a partner in an intimate relationship or marriage. It can be a form of courtship consisting of social activities done by the couple. While the term has several meanings, it usually refers to the act of meeting and engaging in some mutually agreed upon social activity in public, together, as a couple.’’
So dating is part of courtship for those who have marriage in view and part of friendship for those who are just friends. Dating is that moment when someone engages in a planned activity with his or her partner on a fixed date especially as regards to their relationship.
Many questions have always arisen as to if a Christian should date. I am aware of so many religious effects on our inclinations to be in relationships but that notwithstanding it seems so many are becoming flexible and therefore questioning the long stands of religion on moral issues. I will be answering the question here without writing a very long article or overly religious article. I want us to understand the background of this culture called courtship and dating.
Many may want to start linking the origin of dating and courtship to a particular event or series of mindsets developed in later times but I strongly believe that courtship started with the first man while dating is only part of courtship activities. I am not suggesting that Adam and Eve dated but the instincts and tendency to engage in dating and courtship was there. Dating is a “moment of meeting” while “friendship and courtship is a moment of discovery!” The Bible said in Genesis 2:22-23
“The LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman because she was taken out of Man.“
You see, God did the match-making; He brought them together which means He arranged a date for them! He made the woman for the man and brought her to the man. Meanwhile, the man had met with animals before and there was no suitable companion found and then there was a woman! When Adam had met the woman, he exclaimed out of the discovery he made
“This is the bone of my bone and the flesh of my flesh”.
The marriage didn’t happen immediately God brought Eve to Adam, it happened when Adam accepted that Eve is the suitable partner.
Now, I want to clearly say that courtship is very different from being in a sexual relationship. In whichever way, dating is possible! Many people date but not many people date because of the right reason! While some move from sightseeing to the bed, other few moves from sightseeing to the altar while many others move from sightseeing to solving problems together! Truth is that both went for sightseeing but both ended up doing different things. I want to establish here that dating doesn’t guarantee that one is ready for marriage. Believers can date and engage in courtship or friendship as the case may be but believers are expected to court for the right reasons which are no other than marriage.
Marriage is the only way to be sexually engaged to a partner, it is the only way God ordained and has no other alternative. To see why it is so, check out my series on marriage. Therefore the only kind of Christian courtship that exists is one solely and sincerely based on marriage-in-view. If that is the case, it means courtship is not for everyone, it is not for people who are still not ready to consider getting married! For such people, platonic friendships may be the option.
In courtship, it is not the man that is considered to make options but the woman too! Just like Adam couldn’t find a companion for himself from the animals, a lady may too discover that she is not compatible with a particular man through courtship and a man too can make his own discoveries. These discoveries have to be discussed among the two with a sincere approach! Just like a man cannot marry any kind of woman, it is safe to say that a woman cannot marry any kind of man. All these issues of incompatibility can be discovered and resolved through sincere courtship. It is true that divorce is ravaging most of the marriages in this century but once one is married, the issue of making the discovery of incompatibility is closed! That is why courtship is very important for those considering marriage and platonic friendship for those who are not ready for marriage.
Having said the above; Christians don’t experiment sex in that level of relationship. Like earlier noted, marriage is the only relationship where sex is permitted! In fact, what makes marriage different from every other relationship is the intimacy gotten only from sexual practices.
I will end by reminding the younger ones who are not ready for marriage that courtship is not possible for them until they are ready for marriage. Friendship would be the best option! After all, dating is still possible in friendships. In many cases, friendship is much more important than courtship, sometimes friendships override courtship and graduates straight into marriage. I will explain in brief what I mean by friendship in this context.
Christian friendship is not like that of the world which in many cases becomes only about sex! Worldly friendships tend to be always selfish! Younger Christians should engage in friendships with not just one person but several other persons. Because it is dangerous for one to create an unhealthy bond and emotional attachment with one person which will affect how their relationship with other people will look like. This is because when it is all about one person, we will be easily misdirected by our inclination which in all sincerity is carnal.
I will summarize with this; when someone is in a romantic relationship with another person, they are prone to pretend without knowing it that they are all good and caring but when one is in a platonic friendship with someone; their weaknesses are made known to each other. When they come to the age of reasoning marriage, one would be surprised to discover that his or her friend is the right choice.
Even if weaknesses are evident, one would be able to prepare himself to condone such weaknesses. But romantic relationships often tend to present one as the right person even when in truth the person is not! Due to the sexual emotional driven false care and attention gotten from many romantic relationships, many weaknesses are hidden by default and when they enter into marriage vows, the eyes are open and they begin to see so many things they were not prepared for before entering into marriage! On that case, the chances of divorce become high and nearly inevitable.
Friendships are safer and more sincere than courtship, after all, everyone knows courtships are leading to marriage and at that point, the same risk of lust-driven good characters are likely to surface. I am not saying there is nothing like godly-romance but the general term “romantic relationship” means a relationship built solely on romance. Godly romance has nothing to do with lust.
Platonic friendship is ideal! Courtship only becomes important when one is planning to marry someone he or she hasn’t spent time with before. But generally, platonic friendships build future marriages to last longer. I do not mean to say that there were never romantic-relationships that ended well; however, they are not usually the case! Have you ever witness couples who married after ten or some years of belonging to the same Christian fellowships or after some years of being friends without considering to be married later but later saw themselves being in love? Such marriages are much more promising than those who met their partners in a club, party or elsewhere and dived into courtship!
Would anyone come to me in the past and ask me what Grace is, I would say it’s the name of my white skinned early primary classmate who always wore glasses and wrist-watch with pink lips. Or maybe I’d say it’s the name of my late maternal great-grandmother who was blind but could still tell of anything happening around her. Wait a minute; I could say it’s the name of a hospital, a school, a church building… Yes! It’s also the title of most preachers’ sermon and I’ve heard it in songs too… Oh, so many things to just talk about.
Ask a banker and they’d tell you it’s that period of time given after the due date for loan repayment is gone before legal actions are carried out, they’d still be nice to you then because of “Grace period”. But what a poor grace that expires in just fifteen days or twenty days. I remember the day things were thrown out of our house because we couldn’t pay the house rent and our “Grace period” had expired! What a poor grace! Ask a musician and they’d tell you it’s a note that adds beauty but not necessarily important. Grace makes less sense here. If we should define grace with these things, it isn’t something too wonderful to reckon with!
But now, it’s a whole lot more different to me. I may not be theologically correct (who needs it here anyway) but Grace is God’s most beautiful idea, the sole answer to the mess of life in its entirety, the power that changes and the power to change embedded and embellished in the life of God himself; a divine all-in-one shake with nothing missing which can be received or rejected. That’s what Grace means to me now.
I’d have another way to communicate what Grace means to me. It is “DIVINE HEART TRANSPLANT”. God said in Ezekiel 36:26
“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you”
This is what He was going to do many years to come, in our own time, and of course, he did it! So he was saying back then in Ezekiel “I will give you my grace!” That is how I see it and like I said before “…the power that changes and the power to change embedded and embellished in the life of God Himself; a divine all-in-one shake…” We give our hearts to Jesus, he reciprocates and gives us a brand new heart. Grace is God’s rewiring, he rewires us from the inside out! Starts us up and boom! We are producing. Grace isn’t a first-grade refurbishing project of heaven, Grace deals with the old and gets done with it! Then it starts from scratch to make something brand new. A brand new heart, not a refurbished or repainted heart; this is grace!
God’s grace isn’t mild but wild! Wild honey or mild honey, which would you chose? Everyone wants wild honey! Everyone prefers wild meat because it is rich!
If it is mild, it is not God’s grace! God’s grace is wild, ravaging every obstacle, pulling down every stronghold, breaking up every walls and barrier, in search of us! God’s grace picks us up from the darkness and translates us into His marvellous light. This is how wild grace is!
It doesn’t want to avoid troubles but chases after us up to the mountains, down the valley right into the sea! Jonah kept running until he ran into the belly of the fish but grace kept chasing after him, Jonah preferred to die but Grace preferred that Jonah lived! Even in his stubbornness and willful disobedience, Grace never gave a damn! God’s grace is a wild hunter, keeping up the pace right into the belly of the fish!
it is wild and right on target. Like it or not, grace is chasing after you. Grace found Jonah, Jonah never liked the idea of Grace; he had people he could have destroyed if he was God but thanks goodness he isn’t God nor even an assistant God. Jonah disliked the people of Nineveh so much that when he sensed God’s grace was on the chase for them he declined to be the vessel. But Grace took Jonah to them, Grace saved Jonah and saved them too, grace is on the look-out. Grace is the wildest thing ever! Look at how it got hold of Saul of Tarsus; he was on his way to initiating what was to be the biggest annihilation of “Grace-fulls” he didn’t know what he was doing. He was out for people who are saved by Grace but without his knowledge, the same Grace was after him. On his way to capture “Grace-fulls”, he was captured by Grace and had a heart transplant.
Once Saul but Grace dealt with him and brought forth a new man! His name became Paul. Reminiscing over the persistent power of this very wild and unrelenting Grace, he wrote in Galatians 2:20
“It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me”
Paul knows this better beyond the philosophies and influence of doctrines; he had this personal experience that changed everything for him. He wasn’t writing from “hearsay”, he had a first-hand experience of this Grace! He felt the workings of Grace inside of him, he knew Christ moved in and took occupation of him and the same thing is happening to a lot of people all over the world.
Grace, running wild, looking for troubles here and there, ripping off the mess and willing hearts, replacing them with a whole new beautiful heart and life, a life of God himself. Isn’t this what John was communicating in 1 John 4:15 as he wrote
“Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God”
Did you just see that? Anyone who believes, whether he is black or white, African, Asian, American or European! Whether he is tall or short, whoever… No wonder Grace didn’t just save Jonah, it also saved the people of Nineveh. It didn’t just save the 3000 at Peter’s “Holy-Spirit sermon”; it also saved Saul of Tarsus who was out to stop the work of Grace! Grace is on the move like the wild fox whose tail has been set on fire! Whether you are out on an attack on Grace, it keeps coming! Grace isn’t fighting a defensive fight, Grace is an offender, offending darkness and forcing people out of its grip!
You may have lived your worst thinking you have exhausted what God banked on you, you may have done a lot of unimaginable things and you think heaven is closed on you, God is angry and frowning at you, life is at odds with you and maybe the only good thing for you is death! I’ve got news. Grace is on the rampage, running after you hoping you’d accept him. He is cracking open your chest and rearranging the debris into God’s divine plan if only you’d let him. God isn’t asking you to change, He is creating the change in you and you just have to allow the work to go in progress. Do you expect a facility which is still being worked on to be fully functional? Oh no. Work is in progress and the beauty shows up progressively. God can do wonders with those mess in your life.
Now let me say.
Jesus is Grace personified! The difference between Grace and Jesus is none! Grace is wild because Jesus is wild. Let me show you how wild and rugged Jesus is in this fight, the Bible reports thus in Colossians 2:15
“…He disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.”
Look at that! He wasn’t defending anything, He got out on the offensive, took hold of the spiritual rulers and authorities, took of sin and death and shamed them in the face of those they had held bound for years! Jesus didn’t just disgrace them, Jesus won the fight and is giving out the medal of victory to anyone who comes.
Grace saves because Jesus saves. To be saved by Grace doesn’t mean we claim salvation by ideology, theology, doctrine, church endorsement, creed or anything else; it is to be saved by Jesus. This same Jesus is He who with welcoming arms brings into divine union anyone who just affirms to his “come” plea! Jesus isn’t just calling sinners; He is out to them, bringing them home by Himself. This is not a religious jargon, a medieval roman theatrical stage drama or some Greek mythology. This is God’s grace working on purpose.
To walk in the Spirit doesn’t mean to do good works, it means yielding ourselves to the leading of the Spirit which of course will result in doing good works. For example, my body wants to go to swimming pool but I have a leading to go and preach the gospel to certain people, I will have to suppress my desires and do the demands of the Spirit. Perhaps, I saw myself is a very bad situation, my flesh may give me reasons to live in fear but I will respond back with God’s word which says “the Lord is with me”… I am subjecting my flesh to the leading of the Spirit. I will keep taming my flesh until it becomes normal to always respond to God’s spirit more quickly. Sometimes people want to use certain verses in Romans 8 to make us think that living by the Spirit means struggling to do things right! To live by the Spirit is not the same thing with “being led by the Spirit”. Let’s look at some verses and have a brief study.
Verse 1 says “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
I came across a Christian who was teaching people that to be in Christ means to do good works. We are not trying to push out the importance of good works but we shouldn’t be teaching false doctrines based on it. HOW CAN WE BE IN CHRIST JESUS? It is by believing in Christ Jesus as our saviour (John 3:16, 2 Corinthians 5:21), we don’t come to Christ by doing any works… We don’t remain in Christ by doing any works. Our works cannot sponsor us to stand right with God.
Verse 2 says “For in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death”
In Christ, we have been set free from the Law of sin and death! The law of sin comes with death but the law of the Spirit of life has set us free from that death! The wages of sin is death, which is what is obtainable from the law of sin! But the gift of God is eternal life; this is obtainable from the law of the Spirit of life. The law of the Spirit of life would say “come unto me all ye who are heavily burdened and I will give you rest”.
Verse 3 says “For what the Law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful man, as an offering for sin. He thus condemned sin in the flesh”
Jesus was condemned for my sake. What I couldn’t do because my flesh is powerless to do them, God sent Jesus to make up for it and Jesus declared “it is finished”… That is how my freedom story began! I was supposed to die because of my sins but Jesus took it up from me and died my death so that I can live His life.
Verse 4 says “so that the righteous standard of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”
You see that? My life is no longer according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. God’s standard has been fulfilled in my spirit because I do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit! Living by the Spirit and walking by the spirit are two different things. I can only walk by the Spirit because I am now living by the Spirit. When I walk by the Spirit, I am allowing the life I live in the Spirit to come into reality in the physical. My good works are results of who I am and not the results of who I should become.
Verse 5 says “Those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit.”
This is an outline of the difference that has come to be! What I do is different because of how I live. My mind is set on the things of the Spirit because I live according to the spirit. Why are we discussing this SPIRITUAL matter today? Unbelievers don’t care about these things! It is irrelevant to them. They are only concerned with the things of the flesh.
Verse 6, 7&8 says “The mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace because the mind of the flesh is hostile to God: It does not submit to God’s Law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the flesh cannot please God”
We see further that the mind of the flesh isn’t friendly to God, it lives opposite to what God demands! It doesn’t submit to God’s law and it cannot do so. Those are controlled by the flesh cannot please God in any way! But then verse 9 assures me that
“You, however, are controlled not by the flesh, but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.”
You see that? Once we have the Spirit of Christ, we belong to Christ and Jesus said in John 10:28-30 that nobody can pluck us out of his hands! This is an assurance of my place in Christ.
Verse 10 continues “But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet the Spirit gives you life because of righteousness.”
Because Christ is in the believer, although the body of the believer is dead because of sin, yet the Spirit gives the believer life because of HIS own righteousness. It is God who works in us both to will and to do!
In verse 11, Paul wrote,
“And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit, who dwells within you.”
The life we live now is not our own life and it cannot be maintained by our own works. Whatever good work we do today, it is because of what God is doing in us and we have yielded ourselves to do them. A believer in Christ Jesus is saved for good works and not by good works.
As I grow up and understand God better, I get wiser, I know better and my personal opinion about certain things changes. This may not really sound good to you if you are homophobic but don’t you think it is time we see from another perspective? I am not part of the LGBT movement and I am a PRO-life.
We all know what God’s opinion about homosexuality is if we are looking in the Bible but sometimes we pretend like we don’t know God’s opinion about premarital sex, adultery, cursing, lying, anger and so much more. Many of us, especially evangelical Christians are ever ready to throw stones and even want homosexuals imprisoned. As much as God doesn’t like things being used outside purpose, God doesn’t hate homosexuals and God isn’t homophobic. We may want to talk about Sodom and Gomorrah as an indication that God hates homosexuality so much but we should also look back at the story of Noah to see how God hates sin in general. One of the biggest indications of God’s hatred for sin is the cross on which Jesus was crucified! But that same cross is the biggest indication of God’s love for the man regardless of who they are. First, let us establish here that if Jesus was to be physically on earth, He wouldn’t be handling the issue of homosexuality the way we do today because we are excluding it from the list of other human issues and in this regard it becomes discrimination.
You don’t force people to do the right thing especially when it
doesn’t affect you just as you don’t force people to stop being angry, being
envious or being promiscuous and all of that. Many countries have never forced
prostitutes to stop prostituting even when it affects the society in some ways,
we have never stopped people from having premarital sex and all of that, why
should we then single homosexuality out? It is because many of us are guilty of
other misconducts and possibly homosexuality is the one we have managed to
avoid and then we think we are better than other people.
We treat homosexuality as though it is the worst of it all. If
we should jail homosexuals for 14 years in Nigeria, we should also jail people
who commit adultery, fornication and so on. If we say premarital sex is about
two consenting adults, what do we say about homosexuals? The world is
experiencing a very high rate of moral decline but we can’t just single out
homosexuality neither should we force people to become who they don’t want to
Let me talk specifically to some of my fellow Christians.
What was committed to us is the gospel of reconciliation and the
cross says to anyone who is willing “come!” It is not something we
force people to become and it is not something we must have to subject people
to some kind of false therapy just to become who we want them to be. If we love
God so much, we should be preaching the gospel of Jesus and not becoming
moralists only to homosexuals. Moralism doesn’t save anyone, sometimes it
increases the number of pretenders. Most of us have friends who are
fornicating, most of us have discussions with adulterers and many of us even
among the Christian leaders are messed up in sexual sins, what do we do about
them? Do we push them to jail? Do we discriminate against them? Do we carry
placards around asking the government to either legalize or not legalize
This is an unpopular opinion and I hate the act of homosexuality
with every sense of it but we are not being moral by punishing homosexuals and
not punishing fornicators and adulterers. I don’t hate on homosexuals and when
I meet them, I don’t even start arguing their lifestyles with them. If I should
preach Jesus, I just preach Jesus because that is the only life-changing
teaching. If we say Jesus changes people, then we should allow Him to do the
change. Many people have testified about experiencing change from certain
addictions after they got born again and therefore we must leave to God what is
His duty. If Jesus said, “come on to me all ye who are burdened…”
And someone burdened with sin comes to Him, it is not your business what God
decides to do with the person.
Christ never for once campaigned against people’s weaknesses, He
rather offered Himself as a way out of the nature of sin. Jesus didn’t sit the
woman caught in adultery down to tell her how bad adultery was but He simply
told her “go and sin no more.” If she was brought back to Him, He
would still say “go and sin no more.”
Putting up a law against homosexuality without putting up a law
against fornicators is discrimination and I think this is the perspective from
which many people have never viewed this. These personal moral issues are not
what you get people out of by enforcing certain laws on them. By doing so, we
only allow it’s progression is secrecy or stubbornness. Countries shouldn’t be
legalizing or criminalizing homosexuality in the first place. I understand that
the reason some countries legalize it is to offer some kind of protection or to
reverse a law that has been put against it. We never had to legalize
prostitution or premarital sex but people do it broad day light, people get
pregnant without a husband and it happens to be none of our business because we
know these are personal human challenges. Criminalizing homosexuality in the
first place makes it right for the ban to be lifted.
I also think the areas that need to be looked at is in
protecting the kids and ensuring a lifestyle that isn’t theirs is not enforced
on them especially when adopted by homosexual parents. As a Christian who believes
in the authority of the Bible, I can’t endorse Pastors being coerced or
encouraged to perform homosexual weddings, freedom of worship means allowing
people to practice their doctrine. Homosexuality for me is a moral issue that
it is as bad as fornication and adultery and should be treated as such. We made
it a big deal when we criminalized it, we made it a big deal when we took
homosexuals aside and focused on homosexuality as though it is something worse
than other sins. The big deal we made it backfired and so as a payback to years
of torture, hatred and discriminations, they are asking for more and will
continue asking for more because we made it our general issues when it was
supposed to be their personal life issues.
Nobody made fornication and adultery a general issue, nobody
made co-habitation a general issue and that is why there isn’t any outrage. For
instance, for years of gender discrimination, many women are beginning to ask
for more than what the dictionary defines as feminism. Some women are beginning
to ask for more than what is actually right. Some moral issues are personal and
should be handled on a personal basis. There are good people who are helpful in
society but they are homosexuals, there are people who have great skills but
they are homosexuals. In our society, they are helping but personally, they
have moral issues they are battling with. Whether they admit it is a moral
issue or not isn’t our business anyway just as those engaged in premarital sex
are going on with it. Sometimes, it takes the conviction of the Holy Spirit or
a person’s willing efforts to get certain people to stop a certain lifestyle.
If I should be asked to join a campaign of choice, I would join
the team that says “homosexuality should not be criminalized” because
it is discrimination to select personal moral issues we will punish and the
ones we will not punish. Nigeria, like many other countries, is a secular
country. If we want everyone to follow our lines of thought and convictions by
force, then maybe we should blame God for not enforcing a theocratic government
on earth. Sins punishable by law on the nations should be those criminal
activities that endanger other people’s life. I have been a victim of abuse in
the hands of certain homosexuals right from my junior secondary school days and
I was helpless to do anything about it, the memories make me throw up and keeps
me sober but I am also not going to judge people based on my personal emotions
My appeal to most Christians who believe that Jesus makes the
difference is to allow Jesus to make the difference the way He wants to do it.