“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
Within one night in India, people became poor due to new government measures on stopping the exploitation of black money. Now the rich are poor.
Worldly-mindedness is a common and fatal symptom of hypocrisy, for by no sin can Satan have a surer and faster hold of the soul, under the cloak of a profession of religion. Something the soul will have, which it looks upon as the best thing; in which it has pleasure and confidence above other things. Christ counsels to make our best things the joys and glories of the other world, those things not seen which are eternal, and to place our happiness in them. There are treasures in heaven. It is our wisdom to give all diligence to make our title to eternal life sure through Jesus Christ, and to look on all things here below, as not worthy to be compared with it, and to be content with nothing short of it. It is happiness above and beyond the changes and chances of time, an inheritance incorruptible. The worldly man is wrong in his first principle; therefore all his reasonings and actions therefrom must be wrong. It is equally to be applied to false religion; that which is deemed light is thick darkness. This is an awful, but a common case; we should therefore carefully examine our leading principles by the word of God, with earnest prayer for the teaching of his Spirit. A man may do some service to two masters, but he can devote himself to the service of no more than one. God requires the whole heart, and will not share it with the world. When two masters oppose each other, no man can serve both. He who holds to the world and loves it, must despise God; he who loves God, must give up the friendship of the world.
We must have faith in God!
Last week we learnt, when we pray God will restore and we will rejoice. May God help us that we seek His face!
“Now Peter and John were going up into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man that was lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the door of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked to receive an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him, with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something from them. But Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but what I have, that give I thee. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk. And he took him by the right hand, and raised him up: and immediately his feet and his ankle-bones received strength. And leaping up, he stood, and began to walk; and he entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God: and they took knowledge of him, that it was he that sat for alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.” - Acts 3:1-10
The acts of apostles is not just the acts of apostles but also known as acts of the Holy Spirit. Also this book is known for its focus on prayers. Jesus prayed in the Bible and his apostles prayed.
Less prayer = Less power. More prayer = More power. No prayer = No prayer.
The apostles and the first believers attended the temple worship at the hours of prayer. Peter and John seem to have been led by a Divine direction, to work a miracle on a man above forty years old, who had been a cripple from his birth. Peter, in the name of Jesus of Nazareth, bade him rise up and walk. Thus, if we would attempt to good purpose the healing of men's souls, we must go forth in the name and power of Jesus Christ, calling on helpless sinners to arise and walk in the way of holiness, by faith in Him. How sweet the thought to our souls, that in respect to all the crippled faculties of our fallen nature, the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth can make us whole! With what holy joy shall we tread the holy courts, when God the Spirit causes us to enter therein by his strength!
The book of acts doesn't only give us knowledge, but it also transforms our lives.
Testimony: I was born in a family where my father was a Hindu preacher and my grandfather was a witch doctor who also happened to be an award winner from the government of India for his works. Many people used to get deceived by the acts performed by my grandfather. People thought that these things are by God, but they were by evil spirit. But when I heard about the love of God one day at my school, I was changed and I was moved. People were praying to 'Jesus' at my school one day, so I also joined them and amazing thing happened, Jesus spoke to me and said that he loves me and I should follow Him. He gave his life to me so I have my life to Him. So I approached my grandfather (as my father and mother had passed away), he opposed my idea of Christ. He asked me to stop going to the same school again. Then I understood that it was not my father who sent me to that school, but God who brought me there. Then I prayed and asked God that I am confused between my Heavenly Father and Grand Father. God said, "Follow me!" I told my grandfather that I will follow Jesus to which he responded that you may leave the house immediately. I left with my bible with nothing else, but forwarded so many years now God moved me and took me to many lands and used me to do many works and I am ever thankful. One thing in my life I have seen in my life, irrespective of me growing with good money and home arrangement, when I pray, there is always an assurance of God that, "I will not leave you nor forsake you!" God comforted me and answered my prayer. A normal prayer gives a normal result and an extraordinary prayer gives an extraordinary result. So when I left home I stayed at the school. One of the senior American couple asked me one day that we noticed that you have been sleeping here, where are your father and mother, to that she responded, "From today onwards, I will be your mother." To my surprise, she taught me about the word of God and how to preach the word of God. I was 17 year old that time. God gave me the vision to preach the word of God. My mother helped me study further and complete my education that I honestly pursued and following that I became a preacher. Eventually I became a senior pastor with over 2000 members in our Church.
Like we know that government has banned certain denomination notes, and people have been finding hard to find food or vegetables and other livestock items. But God has still kept us safe and comfortable. The name of the lord is a strong tower.
Jehovah Jireh, Jehovah Nissi!
He is the peace, the strength, healer, comforter and one and only God who loves us. God says, man doesn't lives be bread and water, but by the word of God. Peter and John were anointed ones. There are many people who are rich, but they are very poor in spirit.
Illustration: When I was learning to teach the word of God, I received the anointing from God. One day a Hindu woman approached me and asked me to pray since her husband is an alcoholic and use other drugs and he also beats her up. We prayed and he was healed in Jesus' name and the lady accepted Christ as her only savior. I praise the Lord and thank that I was saved to do service in Him. The same lady returned after some time returned and asked to prayer for her husband who she wants to be saved, and we prayed and we praise lord for listening to our prayers and the same man Glorified Jesus and he was baptized in same village. As I moved to a bigger city, the name of the lord was glorified. We stated a school. All these things were done not because of my knowledge or my family who adopted me after I left my grandfather’s home, but it was only because of God. I was later married and have been so blessed with three children. And in my current city, where I live, we have been able to plant 15 churches through God.
Illustration: Martin Luther once said, "My first appointment is always with God!"
Whenever we pray, me must ask Lord, "Make me like you Lord!" Why churches are growing in Tamil Nadu, the state where I come from, is because we believe in prayer ministry.
In my town where I grew up, there was no one, no pastor had approached there, but the Holy Spirit. Where there was no one to speak about the word of God, Holy Spirit worked in its own way and we are now a prayerful hungry church.
I encourage you to be a prayerful person. If a prayer can change an entire town, how much it can do to your life as an individual. We hope you enjoyed today's sermon. We look forward seeing you again next Sunday. God bless!