As I am thinking this morning about devotions I am led to the Book of Matthew and how it talks to us about the power given to us by Jesus on the Cross. I think we too often forget the magnificent gift that was provided for us by Jesus. A gift that we can access and use at any point we need to day or night. A gift that gives us a better life, only we fail to put it into action. Not because we dont know about it, because I think most Christians do; but because we forget its there for us. We forget because our minds are to busy on too many other things that in the end dont amount to a hill of beans.
Matt. 16:15 “But what about you?” (Jesus asked) “Who do you say I am?” (Addressing Simon Peter)
Lets start here; have you asked yourself; who do you say Jesus is in your life and to you? This is a very important self anaylsis we really need to answer. Why? Because it reveals to ourselves whats in our heart. It reveals to us how we are living our lives. If you say Jesus is Lord and Savior over all…does your life reflect it?
Matt. 18:3-7 “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. 6 But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin., it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. 7 Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin.” (Jesus speaking)
I come back to this passage so many times, for so many reasons. I think we all understand that we have been told it is wrong for us to cause another person to stumble in faith and their walk with God. But do we think about the applications of it? What I mean is if we are putting ourselves out there as a Christian, people notice. They can tell by the way we dress, the cross we adorn ourselves with, the bumper sticker on our cars, even the cross on our keychain. They SEE IT and they OBSERVE US. How many times have we tarnished the Christian attitude with our words in a long check-out line at a store, our driving manners, the way we talk to our children or spouse in front of others, or perhaps even the way we present our appearance? Like the little child mentioned in the verse, people of all ages watch, listen and learn. Then they decide based on what they witness if its something they want or not. Something as little as being rude to another person in a long cashier line can become a stumbling block for someone considering Christianity. We are often talking about the cost of being faithful to Christ. Our actions is a cost. We cannot behave like the world, we must behave as Christ has modeled for us.
Matt. 17:20,21 “Because you have so little faith, I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (Jesus speaking)
We were talking about the magnificent gift (in addition to the greatest of all; salvation) this little verse is huge. We often hear it in reference to our faith and the mustard seed…but what about the rest? Jesus clearly tells us that if we have a little bit of faith we have been given the power to move mountains!! Now we know that Jesus can move any mountain, and we pray often for Him to move our mountains and that is ok. But this verse clearly and explicitly tells us even with just a tiny bit of faith we can move the mountain, because Jesus has given us the power. Now think about that for a minute, if we just have a little faith we can do this, so how much more can we do with a lot of faith in our Lord and Savior?? Do we forget we have this gift of power? Or do we continue to be as the little child and ask others to move our mountains when we clearly have the power through Christ to do it ourselves?
Matt. 18:18-20 “I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. 19 Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three come together in my name there I am with them.” (Jesus Speaking)
Two more gifts provided to us by Jesus on the Cross. He is telling us to use our words, for they have power. Power to bind up the enemy when he is attacking our minds, bodies, families, work places, or whatever.
All we need to do is say: In the name of Jesus I bind the enemy from (Add your issue) putting ugly thoughts in my mind! I tell you to go devil and by the promises of MY SAVIOR, you must leave! &/or According to Matt. 18:18 I loosen more of the Holy Spirit in my heart and spirit and home, to provide more wisdom and revelation of Gods will for me.
Yes our words spoken have been given the gift of power to move mountains, to bind up the enemy and keep him away from you, and to loosen the things of God more abundantly in our lives and that of our families. Magnificient gifts we have been given, yet do you use them?
Lastly, in regards to prayer and our war room, our fellowship halls, churches, friendships and especially our homes. We have been given the gift to have the Holy Spirit dwell right with us in a mighty way. He tells us that when we come together in prayer in agreement HE our Savior dwells right there with us as we seek His help for others, ourselves and whatever we agree upon in accordance with Gods word. What bigger gift could we want than to have our Jesus come and be present with us as we pray in unison? Now please dont misunderstand me, He hears all our prayers without any doubt, singularly or in groups. But it is obvious He has put an emphasis on group prayer in His word for good reason.
Use the gifts Jesus gave us on the Cross, use them wisely and use them with the power specified by Jesus for our benefit and most of all to present ourselves to onlookers as something they want and need. Use the gifts to fight off the enemy attacks. Use them to pray in a mighty awesome way with Jesus and the Holy Spirit present in the midst of it.