OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DATE: SUNDAY 30th DECEMBER 2018.
THEME: X-RAYING THE HEART.
A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. Matthew 12:35
READ: John 12:3-8
3 Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.
4 Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, which should betray him,
5 Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.
7 Then said Jesus, Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this.
8 For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.
“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
From the above scripture, we understand that everything begins and ends with the word of God. Since the word of God is the architect, designer and builder of all that has ever existed. It means that nothing is hidden from its reach and power. This is good news to all lovers of God’s word. There is no hiding place for Satan to buffet you if the word of Good is your teacher and guide. In today’s world, a lot of people hate the word of God, particularly those aspects that seem to encroach on their pleasures and “fundamental human rights” such as homosexuality, incest, bestiality, alcoholism, smoking and drug addiction. Many hate what God’s word say about these acts not only because they indulge in them but also because these acts serve as the means of livelihood for some of them. I encourage such people to receive the good news of change that come through God’s word today, because the same word will stand to condemn them on the Day of Judgment if they continue to ignore it now. On the Day of Judgment, not only will God judge our acts, He will also judge the intent of our hearts, and He is already doing this today with His word (Hebrews 4:12).
In today’s Bible reading, we see how the word of God x-rayed the intent of Judas Iscariot’s heart. A woman came with costly ointment to anoint Jesus’ feet, and Judas Iscariot, being Jesus’ treasurer, saw this as a waste of resources. Besides the fact that Judas was wrong to condemn a sacrifice offered to Jesus, the word of God exposes the real reason he was “concerned” about keeping the money “for the poor”. John 12:6 says:
“This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.”
Today, some church treasurers may not support the acquisition of anything befitting for God’s house because the greater the credit balance in the church account, the more funds available for them to steal. Dealing with the rottenness of man’s hearts is very important to god because it controls their words and action. A person who goes to church indecently dressed has more than meets the eye in his or her heart. When a man begins to plait his hair in the name of “fashion”, he needs to re-examine the motivations of his heart. A pastor who indiscriminately hugs congregation members should watch it with the opposite sex. Erotic jokes are an overflow of what is in the heart; don’t trivialize or condone them. May the Lord clear all forms of rottenness from our hearts I Jesus’ Name.
Father, please clear away all rottenness in my heart, and help me to keep myself pure as light.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Zechariah 11-14
John 20: 24-21:14
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN 15: NEARER MY GOD TO THEE.
Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee!
E’en though it be a cross that raiseth me,
Still all my song shall be, nearer, my God, to Thee. Nearer to Thee!
Though like the wanderer, the sun gone down,
Darkness comes over me, my rest a stone;
Yet in my dreams I’d be nearer, my God, to Thee. Nearer to Thee!
There let me see the sight, an open Heaven;
All that Thou sendest me, in mercy given;
Angels to beckon me nearer, my God, to Thee. Nearer to Thee!
Then, with my waking thoughts bright with Thy praise,
Out of my stony griefs Bethel I’ll raise;
So by my woes to be nearer, my God, to Thee. Nearer to Thee!