What brings us to have a relationship with God?
Micah 6:6,7,8 -
Wherewith shall I come before the LORD, bow myself before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams [skin], with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
Today's message puts very beautifully of how to have a relationship with God.
[Bow] We all think by worshipping God we build a relationship with Him and God tells us when we worship we experience His glory but do not build a relationship with Him.
[Calves of a year old / tender calves] We also think by giving a part of our worldly blessings, worldly riches like money (tithes), our land etc. for God's purpose we can build a relationship with Him and to this also God says no. These will cause us to be blessed more but would not build our relationship with Him.
[Ram's skin] The next thing put before God is our being good Christians and to this also God says doing this would receive His favour but yet this will not cause us to have a relationship with Him.
[Rivers of oil] This may surprise many, that being anointed and doing great wonders does not necessary mean that, the person enjoys a great relationship with God. I know it is very hard to digest this but it is the truth. People have this misconception that any Man or Woman of God doing healings, miracles or delivering great understanding of His Kingdom shares a very close relationship with Him. Having an anointing over one's live and having relationship with God are two different things.
[Frist born for transgression] Another surprise - repentance brings us closer to God and to this also God says no. Repenting and being baptised in the Lord Jesus will save us from the wrath of God but does not cause us to have a relationship with Him. Thus Jesus said we need to have both baptisms of water and of the Holy Spirit not just one.
[Fruit of our body] Doing work for the Lord, using our 'talents' for His glory too does not bring us to have relationship with Him. When we work for the Lord we are only strengthening ourselves, benefiting ourselves and not actually benefiting God. We say 'God's work' but it is actually not God's work, but our work in God's Kingdom.
The Lord says the only 3 things that can really build our relationship with Him are (1) do justly, (2) love mercy and (3) walk humbly with God.
[Do Justly] Jesus put this very simply as love one another as I have loved you. He called this as a new (unheard) commandment. God wants us to be like Him, holy for He is Holy, righteous for He is Righteous, love for He is Love. Doing justly requires us to look not only between man and man but also between man and God...
[Love Mercy] Repentance is a step towards loving mercy. Paul beautifully put this as while we were yet sinners the Lord loved us and died for us. We should realise we are not worthy of the love which we experience from the Lord. We should remember however much we may try to do good yet we land up doing wrong somewhere or the other. The wrong that we do calls for the wrath of God on us, yet it is His mercy that keeps us and overlooks the wrong. For man the Lord is projected seated on a throne of mercy for it is His mercy alone that brings us to Him and makes us worthy to be a part of His Body.
[Walk Humbly With God] The Lord does not say working for Him or thinking of Him all day or praying to Him but says walking with Him. Walking requires us to move. This moving is not by ourselves but 'WITH GOD'. Many are moving but doing so by themselves and not with God. To move with God we need to speak to the Spirit of God to know how and when to move and we see this illustrated in the books of Moses when Israelites followed the pillar of cloud which symbolized the Holy Spirit. This moving with God should be done humbly. The word humbly means being lowly before God. Being lowly comes only when we have fear of God in us and fear of God comes when we have the knowledge of God. It is only when we know Who God is and who we are that brings us to be humble before Him. We see Jesus Who was God the Son come as man, everyway like the Father yet was humble before God the Father and called Him His God. Imagine how humble should we then be.
It is only when we do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with god do we have a relationship with Him, be family with Him and rightly call Him 'Abba Father'. These are not optional but all three together are necessary to bring us to have a relationship with the Lord.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord Jesus, You gave us your disciples the right to call God our Father and being your disciple requires us to follow You. You showed us all the three qualities in You. Even though You had no sin in You and did not require mercy yet when You received the cup of suffering You desired mercy for You saw us in You. When You were crucified it was we who were crucified in You and by mercy we were also resurrected in You. Lord we pray these three requirements be found in us and we truly rejoice a relationship with You to rightly call You 'Abba Father'...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference Scriptures ]
33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
Romans 5:8 - But God commendeth his own love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Matthew 18:4 - Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
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