On this edition of BotROCK | Building on the ROCK with Pastor Murphy:
Featured Artist: Casting Crown
Song Title: Jesus Fiend of Sinners
Scripture: I Timothy 1:15
Its 8 days to Christmas and the excitement is already in the air. I like the Christmas season. It’s a period where we relax and have fun after the hard work of the year. We get to hang out with family and friends and eat many fancy foods. It’s a worthy celebration of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I also believe that amidst all the fun, we should also reflect on the reason for this season.
So for this yuletide season, I’m offering you my dear BotROCK listeners a FREE Christmas Devotional. Get a burst of daily inspiration and re-discover the true essence of Christmas from this 12 Days of Christmas with Pastor Murphy and get exciting gifts plus rewards from the fun challenges. We are currently on Day 3. Follow me on twitter @PastorMurphyO and subscribe.
Jesus is your Friend.
I like the opening scripture we read today. Paul was writing to Timothy and he emphasized that this is a trustworthy saying that is worthy of all acceptance. In other words, the statement Paul was making to Timothy had to be the truth and nothing but the truth and he expected every single person to accept it because that is the ticket to a fulfilling life. What then did Paul say? He said, Christ Jesus came into this world to save sinners. This is a very powerful statement! It means that Sinners now have a get out of jail free card and the issuer of that card is the only person that has the right to condemn sinners. That is good news!
[quote]Jesus’ main business when He was on earth (and even now) is to seek and save sinners![/quote]
He was not in the business of condemning sinners.
One time He was asked why He was hanging out with sinners. He answered, it is the sick that needs a doctor not the healthy and that he came not to call the righteous but sinners. Jesus never condemned any sinner when He was on earth. Interestingly, it was those that thought they were righteous He condemned, i.e. the Pharisees, Sadducees and the teachers of the law. That is why He was called the friend of sinners.
God is NOT mad at you.
If you have been held bound by sin or any kind of addiction, I have good news for you: The reason Jesus was born on Christmas day was to seek and save you from the sin that has held you bound. He is definitely not condemning you so don’t disqualify yourself from His bountiful blessing.
Maybe you have had a series of abortion, or you have killed someone, or you habitually womanize but deep down in you, you know you need help and you desire a way out. Trust me, Jesus has been seeking you out and He wants to save you.
Do not believe the lie that you have sinned too much and it’s hard for Jesus to save you from this. The Bible says that Jesus saves to the uttermost they that come to Him. It is his primary assignment and He is an expert in turning sinners into righteous people. I am a testimony.
About 13 years ago while I was still in the university I made a simple prayer, Jesus if you can save me come and save me. Let me give you the context. That night I had been high on drugs, which had become a regular activity for me. But that day I felt a strong need to change my lifestyle but I did not know how. Then the thought came to me to try Jesus and I made that simple prayer and slept off. I woke up the next day a different person with little desire to sin. Jesus had saved me from my sin, that’s how I know he is an expert. He had been seeking me out and that day, when I gave Him the opportunity, He saved me.
How to respond to God’s love.
Let me share with you some practical things you can do to give Jesus the opportunity to deliver you.
First acknowledge and accept that you need help and you can’t help yourself. When Jesus was on earth, the people who benefitted the most from Him were those who acknowledged that their lifestyles was not good enough and they needed a change desperately.
For instance, Mary the prostitute came to Jesus weeping because she needed His help to change. She didn’t like the way she was living anymore and she believed that it was detrimental to her. But she also realized she could not change her lifestyle by herself, so she decided to go to the Master and Jesus did his excellent work on her. The prostitute became one of the pillars of Jesus’ ministry. She actually was the first to see Him when Jesus rose from the dead.
Secondly ask Jesus for help. Although Jesus is so eager to come into your life and change you completely, He prefers to do it in response to your request. What He usually does is to stand at the door and knock and when you open the doors to him by asking for His help, He literarily swarms in and start helping you by giving you his Holy Spirit.
Thirdly, decide to trust and obey. This is where our effort is needed a bit. Jesus by His Spirit in you brings lasting changes into your life by nudging you to do particular things that will trigger your desired change. These things are difficult when we think about them but once we decide to trust and obey Jesus it becomes a lot easier to do them.
For instance, He may nudge you to break friendship with some friends that you have been very close to, because He knows that their influence over you may hinder the work He is doing in you. Or that you break-up from relationships that have provided your needs all these while. Or put some boundaries that will help you wane of some old sinful habits that have held you down, or that you reduce the amount of time you spend on the internet because it usually leads to pornography. Jesus normally leads you to take such drastic decisions. But once you trust and obey Him, He releases His power in you to overcome the challenge. Trust me, it is Jesus that works in you both to will and to act in ways that please Him.
Finally when you make a mistake, never drawback. Come to Jesus and He will forgive and cleanse you again.
One core reason we celebrate Christmas is because Jesus came to save sinners and not condemn them. His arms are always open to save. Remember, He is a friend of sinners.
Before we go, let me invite you for the 2016 90” Minutes Worship Event with Chidi Ani of Just Worship Enugu, and Gloryyah of At The Masters’ Feet, Lagos. It is going to be a wonderful time that will set you up for a prosperous 2016. Date is Friday 15 January, 2016 by 5pm. As you worship God in this 90 Minutes Worship, 2016 will yield it increase and prosperity to you! Save the date and plan to attend.
Merry Christmas in advance!
BEFORE WE END OUR PROGRAM TODAY, I want to give you an opportunity to make Jesus Lord of your life. He wants to make Himself real to you if you will let Him. Say this simple prayer with me:
Jesus I know you are the son of God and you died for my sins. Today I give you my life, take me and change me. Be the Lord of my life. Thank you Lord, for I am now yours!
If you sincerely made that prayer from your heart, you are now a child of God and have started the journey of a fruitful life. Join a Bible believing Church that will help you grow in God. If you reside in Enugu city feel free to visit us at The Cornerstone Church, Trans-Ekulu, we will be glad to have you.
***LET ME PRAY WITH YOU***
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There is a mighty revival of the Spirit going on in Enugu, and it will spread to the entire Eastern Region. It is a Pentecostal revival of the Spirit. Many of us have been praying for this for some time now and it is here finally! Do not be wary in your in your prayers & fasting. It is already here! The work of God shall be established.
Thank you for tuning in today. For Testimonies and enquiries please call 0703 0099 275.
Join me at The Cornerstone Church every Sunday, 9am for inspiring worship and a transforming word from God. We meet at The Cornerstone Church Tent, Akachukwu Springs, Plot Cp2, Enugu-Onitsha Express Road by Trans-Ekulu flyover, Trans-Ekulu. The Church is at the foot of the Trans-Ekulu bridge close to the petrol station. Tune in next week for a more exciting edition of our program, Building on the ROCK with Pastor Murphy!
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