Open Heavens Daily Devotional For 29th May, 2018
Theme – SOLDIERS OF THE CROSS.
Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 2 Timothy 2:3
READ: 2 Timothy 2:1-11
1Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
3 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
4 No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
5 And if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully.
6 The husbandman that laboureth must be first partaker of the fruits.
7 Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.
8 Remember that Jesus Christ of the seed of David was raised from the dead according to my gospel:
9 Wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not bound.
10 Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.
11 It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him:
It is important for a child of God to recognize and understand the multifaceted life we are called to by God. For this reason, the Holy Spirit reveals to us in 2 timothy 2:3 that we have been called to be soldiers of Jesus Christ. A soldier does certain things to fulfill his or her vocation. Enduring hardness, shunning worldly pleasures and distractions, and keeping to the rules of military service are some of the basic characteristics expected of a soldier. Soldiers are also required to fight to defend the territorial integrity of their country from external attacks. In addition, they are to engage in warfare to expand the territory of their commander-in-chief, monarch or emperor. As it is in the physical, so it is in the spiritual. The comportment of a soldier is that of discipline, and a Christian soldier should be even more disciplined. This will help him or her to endure hardness, which means learning to be full and also empty as the situation demands (Philippians 4:12). If a soldier of the cross is not disciplined enough to endure hardness, he or she will end up like Esau, who sold his birthright for a plate of pottage (Hebrews 12:16). Our Lord Jesus had laid down a good example for us to follow in this regard when He refused to turn stone to bread even though He was hungry (Luke 4:3-4). A soldier of Jesus Christ avoids any distraction that would take his or her focus away from the way of the cross he or she is fighting to defend. Materialism is not a problem for a true soldier of Jesus Christ who has learnt to be modest. Concerning this,, our Commander-in-Chief in Luke 12:15 said this to us:
“And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.”
Check Also – Billy Graham’s Daily Devotional
Just as soldiers fight to defend the territorial integrity of the kingdom of their king, a soldier of Jesus Christ fights against sin, which destroys mankind and God’s created world, by preaching the gospel. He or she preaches the love of God so that men may embrace it and live a good life that will impact the lives of others positively. Soldiers of Jesus Christ do not only fight to defend, they also attack the opposing kingdom of the devil. They do this by proclaiming the word of God, which is alive and powerful, against the workers of iniquity. While putting on the whole armor of God, soldiers of Christ also exercise their divinely given authority in the place of prayer. They have no time for frivolities because they are always watchful. Beloved, are you numbered among the soldiers of Jesus Christ? Are you thriving in spite of the challenges of the call to fight against unrighteousness? May the Lord see you through to the very end in Jesus Name.
Father, please uphold me to the very end, deliver me from all forms of worldly entanglement and grant me grace to please you all the way.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: 1 Kings 7;
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN 16: STAND UP, STAND UP FOR JESUS.
1. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! ye soldiers of the cross;
Lift high His royal banner, it must not suffer loss:
From vict’ry unto vict’ry, His army shall He lead,
Till every foe is vanquished, and Christ is Lord indeed.
2. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! The trumpet call obey:
Forth to the mighty conflict, in this His glorious day;
Ye that are men now serve Him against unnumbered foes;
Let courage rise with danger, and strength to strength oppose.
3. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! Stand in His strength alone,
The arm of flesh will fail you, ye dare not trust your own;
Put on the gospel armor, and watching unto prayer,
Where calls the voice of duty, be never wanting there.
4. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! the strife will not be long;
This day the noise of battle, the next the victor’s song;
To him that overcometh a crown of life shall be;
He with the King of glory shall reign eternally.