The Same Power

17th April

The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, He will give life to your mortal bodies by the same Spirit living within you.”

Romans 8:11

Our King is alive. The grave could not hold Him. Death couldn’t keep Him down. He broke the shackles of sin on humanity. He shattered addictions. He was victorious over death. He defeated the enemy. He marked the way to the Father as ‘open’! He freed us from sin and gave us a new life in HIM. Even more incredibly, He gave us His Spirit, to live in us, guide us and transform us and give us LIFE. Yes, the book of Romans boldly states, that ‘the same power that raised Jesus from the dead, the same Spirit, lives in us also’. That means, we have resurrection power running through our veins. We are radically and supernaturally transformed when we accept Jesus into our lives.

Jesus lives in YOU. The Spirit of God, has made His home in YOUR heart. That is why Jesus rose again. That is why He laid down His life for you. When we accept Jesus and ask Him to be our God and live in us, when we repent and accept His forgiveness for our sins, He comes into our lives, so we no longer can stay the same. We are being transformed each day but His Spirit, and radical love. That is who you are. That is your purpose. That is why we are alive. To accept Him and be transformed by Him, to live for Him and experience all of His blessings for your life.

Spoiler ALERT – Jesus Doesn’t Stay Dead

15th – 16th April

Weekend & Easter Special

You killed the author of life, but God raised Him from the dead. And we are witnesses of this fact!”

Acts 3:15

Yesterday we talked about the greatest act of love we have received from our Heavenly King, Jesus Christ. John in his letters on the topic of Jesus’ love said this, ‘We know what real love is because Jesus gave up His life for us.”1 Yet, there is more wonderful news. Jesus didn’t stay dead. He rose again after the third day in victorious triumph. He is ALIVE.

See if Jesus didn’t come back to life, then all He accomplished at the cross would be meaningless. Jesus finished His ‘work’ on the cross but completed His ‘mission’ on the third day. It is in Jesus’ resurrection, that sin was finally and fully dealt with, death was finally dealt with and all sickness and disease once and for all, conquered and overcome. Jesus’ resurrection means we don’t serve a dead god but a God who is alive!

Jesus’ resurrection means that we can have a free, close, and no-strings attached relationship with the Creator of this world. It means that we are free from the chains of sins, addictions and depression. HE is alive. HE overcame all things, so that we might walk in the fruit of His victory. It was in the Good News of Jesus’ resurrection that the disciples gained strength and were filled with God’s grace to boldly preach about Him. Acts 4:33 tells us that, ‘with great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all.’ We too are powerfully filled with God’s grace through Jesus to tell the world, our God is not dead, but ALIVE!

11 John 3:16

The Seed Of Love

14th April

For this is how God loved the world: He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life…See how very much our Father loves us, for He calls us His children, and that is what we are!”

John 3:16a, 1 John 3:1a,

Have you ever seen a flower grow in the strangest places? Sometimes they are seen growing through concrete pavements or even bursting through wood. Isn’t it incredible? It shows that the power of a flower to grow and flourish, is greater than the limitations of its surroundings.

We are radically loved by Jesus. We live in His eternal love. We are blessed beyond measure. The King of Kings laid down His life for you, for us, as an unconditional payment for our sins. This is radical love right!? Yet Jesus’ work on the cross didn’t finish there. He came so that He could pour Himself into us; So that He could make His home in our hearts. We are not only loved individually but are called to love others too with the same love we have been shown. This means sowing the seeds of that love to all we meet. Jesus’ sacrifice and radical love for us shouldn’t be the ‘world’s best kept secret’ but rather should be shouted from the rooftops for all the world to hear.

Even if you think the heart of the receiver of that love is as hard as a concrete pavement, impenetrable by words or deeds, know that if God can cause roses to grow through rock, then how much more can He make the seed of the Good News and of His love grow in someone’s heart. Be encouraged. Share the gift of love you have received freely with others. You are blessed and loved. Now go and love others in the same way. (Please watch to the end!!)

The Wages Of Sin Death: The Priceless Gift

13th April

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Romans 6:23

Why did He do it? Why did a good and sinless man, the Creator of our life, the King of this world, lay His life down for us, for our wrong doings, for our sins? Why did He pay the ransom that we deserve to face? Moreover, why did He give His free gift of eternal life to us, received by just believing and not doing, instead of the punishment we deserved? The answer; simply because He incredibly and radically loves us.

God knew that there was nothing we could do to come close to Him. Even our best efforts were not enough, because at the end of the day, we had all sinned and fallen short of His glorious standards. We tried to follow His laws, but we kept failing to keep them. So God sent His one and only Son, to live a perfect, sinless life, and take the punishment due to us for our un-holiness and un-cleanliness, our sinful and wrong actions, our rebellion and disbelief. We deserved to die but instead we were given life, eternal life, through Jesus Christ. The writer of Romans says this, “He was handed over to die because of our sins, and He was raised to life to make us right with God.”1

When you read this today, don’t let familiarity breed contempt and laziness. This is the good news, which has the power to save, the power to transform lives. This is what gives us hope to live in this world. This gives us joy, happiness, and peace. We are alive because of this truth. Jesus paid our debts. Rejoice that He did it for YOU!

1Romans 4:25

What Love Is This That Took My Place

12th April

Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”

Romans 5:7-8

What an amazing truth this is. Jesus willingly laid down His life, for not just someone who was upright, not just for good people, but for sinners, for people who may not even accept His sacrifice. What amazing love is that! It’s like we have been let off the hook for something we have clearly and blatantly done wrong, but don’t receive punishment for! We are forgiven, because Jesus chose to die for us at our worst to give us His best!

As you reflect upon this devotion today, think about what you have been saved from, and rejoice that it was while in that situation, moment, or wrong decision, that God gave His only Son for YOU. Rejoice that that is how much you are loved. Rejoice that God no longer identifies you with that wrong choice or action, but instead sees His resurrected Son standing in the place of your punishment and judgement. What grace! What Love!

Loved By A King

11th April

There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

John 15:13

Yesterday, we looked at Judas’ dramatic yet simple betrayal of Jesus, by a kiss; a damning sign of false affection. Yet Jesus’ response to Judas completely blows the mind of the reader and shows us exactly what Jesus was like; what our God is like. Jesus says to Judas ‘My friend, go ahead and do what you have come for’1 Isn’t that an astounding statement. Even in those words, the love and grace of a merciful God flows so freely.

Jesus could have easily turned round and caused a raucous, screaming and shouting ‘JUDAS, how could you betray Me. You know who I am. I have loved you and taught you and blessed you!’ One would think these words would be a reasonable response from a man who was just betrayed by one of His twelve closest friends (Jesus was 100% human too, as well as 100% God). Yet Jesus didn’t say that at all. Instead, like a humble lamb led to the slaughter, He purposefully and sacrificially allowed Himself to be arrested and accept the betrayal by Judas.

Jesus showed us that He was freely laying down His life, as the greatest act of love, for people just like Judas; people who didn’t do anything to gain God’s love and favour, but were freely given it. We too are radically loved, by the sacrificial death of our Lord. His life was the greatest act of love, not only shown by His words to Judas, but throughout history, to us and to all mankind. Our choice – to accept it or reject it!

1Matthew 26:50

Betrayed By A Kiss

10th April

So Judas came straight to Jesus. “Greetings, Rabbi!” he exclaimed and gave him the kiss.”

Matthew 26:49

This Easter Sunday, many Christians around the world will be celebrating Jesus’ victorious resurrection over sin and death, the ultimate act of love. As we lead up to the victorious Sunday, it often gives us a time to reflect on what we have been saved from, as if to almost review our lives through the lens of grace that was so freely given at the cross.

Today’s verse tells us of the moment that the disciple Judas, betrayed Jesus with a kiss. One can only imagine what was going through Judas’ mind at that time. Of course scripture tells us that this was not a spontaneous idea but a premeditated action, previously arranged with the leading priests in exchange for thirty pieces of silver. We also know according to scripture, that Judas probably didn’t just act on his own, but allowed satan to influence his thoughts, and enter his mind1. Yet the ‘not so talked about’ part of Judas’ life is the regret and remorse he had knowing that he had just betrayed an innocent man with the kiss of death. His remorse was so deep, that not only did he try to return the ‘blood’ money, but he also eventually hanged himself.

Friends, as we reflect on our lives, on the things that we have done wrong, even the actions we have done that may even blatantly deny Christ, know that there is still forgiveness for you. You don’t need to die in condemnation, because you can live in freedom from guilt and shame. Don’t let you actions lead you to hate yourself so much that you can’t live with what you have done. Jesus’ forgiveness was for all mankind, and His love reaches even the darkest places in our lives. Turn to Him. Repent of your sins and accept the renewing and restoring work of the blood of Christ, freely shed to wash you clean.

1Luke 22:3

The Wonderful Day Of Our Glorious Hope

8th – 9th April

Weekend Edition

For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people. And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God, while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, will be revealed. He gave His life to free us from every kind of sin, to cleanse us, and to make us His very own people, totally committed to doing good deeds.”

Titus 2:11-14

Life can be hard sometimes. Feelings of giving up, of throwing the towel in and feelings of defeat may often enter your mind. But you were not created to be on the loosing side. You are adopted into the victorious family of Christ, of whom the author and creator of our very breath, is the God, Father and Head of the house. We are promised that one day Christ will return. That is our glorious hope. That day when Christ returns in all His glory to rid this world of evil once and for all and take us home to live with Him eternally!

Although that day has not yet come, we can still have victory in Christ in this life, on this earth. Read what Paul says to Titus in verse 14, ‘He gave His life to free us from every kind of sin, to cleanse us, and to make us His very own people…..’ Yes we are living in an evil world, full of sinful pleasures and temptations, but we have victory over them, through the sacrificial death and victorious resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is in His resurrection that we can live sanctified and purified lives, with ‘wisdom, righteousness and devotion to God’.

Friends, may we rejoice, in the glorious hope that awaits and in the victory we now live in!

In My Mother’s Womb

7th April

I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as My prophet to the nations.”

Jeremiah 1:5

Jeremiah was an Old Testament prophet who had the hard job of speaking God’s truth to a world which simply had turned its back on Godly living. Moreover, he had the un-desirable job of telling his people that they would be invaded because of their rebellion against God’s ways. It was a job that was sometimes to much for Jeremiah. Hence why he was given the name ‘weeping prophet’.

Yet right at the very beginning of his life, when God commissioned Jeremiah, God spoke these clear and precise words to him, “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as My prophet to the nations.” God’s plans for Jeremiah’s life started long before he was even conceived. And it was these words that kept Jeremiah going, even through really hard times.

Today, God says the same to you. He has a plan and purpose for you. He thought about you before you were even a thought! Don’t give up on your life. God wants to use YOU. Why? Because He made you to be used! We may have days when it all seems too much, like Jeremiah did, but our trust and hope is in knowing that we have been individually designed but Almighty God, to be used for His glory in a perfect relationship with Him.

Broken Chains

6th April

O Lord, I am Your servant; yes, I am Your servant, born into Your household; You have freed me from my chains. I will offer You a sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the Lord.”

Psalm 116:16-17

Isn’t it great news to know that we are no longer slaves of sins but friends of Christ?! Of course, as Paul says, although we are no longer slaves to sin, we are slaves of righteousness1. Well what does that mean? Slavery, simply put, means you are in bondage to whatever is controlling or mastering your life. If you are addicted to chocolate, then you are a slave to it. Much is the same with us. Before Christ, we were also slaves to sin’s pulls, temptations and addictions, ultimately enslaved to the enemy’s schemes and ways. Yet now we are in Christ, we are born ‘into the household’ of God, and become His ‘slaves’. Yet the difference is, we are slaves without chains, free to serve our Master, not out of fear or in bondage, but because we want to, through obedience and in freedom. We have chosen to serve God, and in turn He gives us a new life, full of every blessing from the Father, empowered to live life to the fullest through the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

When we were in slavery to sin, we tried to break free from the chains that held us down, but we were trapped in its luring net. Yet when Christ invaded our lives, He shattered the chains that bound us, and gave us freedom to live in Him. Sin is suffocating but Christ’s yoke is liberating and full of love and peace. Let us thank God for the chains that have been broken, and the freedom we can live in. In Christ is the victory!

1Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living. Romans 6:17-18