OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DATE: THURSDAY 21ST FEBRUARY 2019
Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: John 11:25
READ: Ezekiel 37:1-10
1The hand of the LORD was upon me, and carried me out in the spirit of the LORD, and set me down in the midst of the valley which was full of bones,
2 And caused me to pass by them round about: and, behold, there were very many in the open valley; and, lo, they were very dry.
3 And he said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord GOD, thou knowest.
4 Again he said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD.
5 Thus saith the Lord GOD unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live:
6 And I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall live; and ye shall know that I am the LORD.
7 So I prophesied as I was commanded: and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold a shaking, and the bones came together, bone to his bone.
8 And when I beheld, lo, the sinews and the flesh came up upon them, and the skin covered them above: but there was no breath in them.
9 Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.
10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army.
Death signals the termination of any form of life. It is also often applied to non-living things like an organization, a concept or an idea. Whenever death successfully cast its power over anything, it usually leads to cessation, extinction, doom, destruction, total collapse, and hopelessness. Death is so powerful that it is declared to be the last enemy that will be destroyed (1 Corinthians 15:26). Thank God that Jesus has destroyed the one that had power the power of death, and He now holds the key of death, so that it can no longer torment those who belong to Him (Hebrews 2:14, Revelation 1:18).
In the natural world, people declare something to be impossible if it runs contrary to science or contradicts their settled convictions and misconceptions. For this reason, to the natural man, death is irreversible, and the restoration of life is an unthinkable impossibility that is contrary to reason. Against this background, you can understand the reason why God asked the prophet Ezekiel the rhetorical question, “Son of man, can these bones live?” (Ezekiel 37:3). The prophet’s response to this question indicates that he recognized that only the all-knowing and all powerful Author of life and Creator of all things can restore any dead substance back to life. He alone has power to reverse the irreversible. I pray that the One who raised Lazarus from the dead will restore anything that is dead concerning you back to life today in Jesus’ Name.
More than anything else, the characteristics of death make it the worst enemy of man. Do you know that death stings and the sting of death is sin (1 Corinthians 15:56)? Before death can overpower life, it first introduces its sting into that life. The sting of death is extremely painful, wicked and ruthless. Death destroys, leads to irreparable loss, and cannot be appeased. However, thank God that the whole assignment for which Jesus Christ came to this world is centered on the restoration of life. John 10:10, explains it this way:
“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”
Jesus came to set the captive free by replacing death with abundant life. Anyone who has suffered death, destruction or loss of any kind can come to Him for total restoration. He did it for Lazarus, the widow of Nain and for several others, and He can still do it for you today (John 11:38-44, Luke 77:12-14, Mark 5:38-41). Are you suffering death in any area of your life? The Resurrection and the Life says to you today: Arise!
Father, destroy the power of death in my life and give me abundant life in Jesus’ Name.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Acts 3-4
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN 9: IN CHRIST ALONE
In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand.
In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
‘Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live.
There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ
No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life’s first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
Till He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand.