PAGE 38— SUNDAY VANGUARD, APRIL 8, 2018 Living with Eternity in view (5) By Pastor William F. Kumuyi JOHN 5:28-29 "Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." •Kumuyi This means that everybody will be resurrected. Whether you are a saint or a sinner death does not stop your existence. In fact, after the resurrection, both saints and sinners will enter a new phase of existence by living the forever life. While saints will have the resurrection of life; sinners will participate in the resurrection of damnation. Let us work on a supposition that you rejected the universal provision of God's salvation for mankind when it was readily available. What then will be your fate? Mark 9:43-44 "And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." If you should die as a sinner, let me put it so bluntly as it is, you will be in the burning lake of fire forever and ever. You will keep burning in that horrible eternal chimney that you will never get burnt up. You will feel your body being consumed within the terrible scorching hit of forever flaming fire, but it will never completely consume your body. It will be so painful that you will long for death, yet death will not come to rescue you from the eternal Divine decree for sinners. "It is appointed unto men once to die." You cannot die twice. That is, after you might have undergone the resurrection from the dead life you lived on earth, you cannot die again while facing eternal punitive measure for the crimes you committed against God in your previous life. This means that after your resurrection you will live forever. You cannot commit suicide. Neither can Satan kill you nor the flames of eternal fire. But you will live forever and ever in that God forsaken place. Mark 9:45-46 "And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." Hell is a place where the cells of your body will not be destroyed despite the astronomical heatwave that will engulf your human body. Mark 9:47-48 "And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." What does it mean to live with eternity in view? What it means is this. If you have a close confidant who is alw-ays in the habit of influencing you to indulge in sin, thereby becoming an eternal offender of God's word and a potential handicap of eternal damnation; and you have eternity in view, it then means that you will do all that you can to end such a relationship. This is because it will be far better for you to cut off that wealthy man or that beautiful seductress, so that you can preserve your eternal life and remain safe, than to sink in eternal destruction. Do not let eternity teach you an eternal lesson you will ever live to regret. That is why you need to cut off every thing that will smear your image even if it will lead to the scandal of the day. Talking about scandal, David the king had a national scandal when he committed adultery, murdered the husband of his partner and took her in as his wife. It was a terrible deed that inflamed wagging tongues, but he did not let the shame of it hinder his relationship with God, but came out clean seeking God's mercy. Today, David has gone to meet the LORD in heaven, but the earthly shame and scar did not join the flight to heaven. You may have gotten pregnant out of wedlock. Do not tell a lie to cover it up. Though it will be shameful; it will only last for few weeks. Repent and make right your life. Matthew 25:41-43 "Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not." The lives of many people around the world is lived in selfishness. They never give any part of their substance, food, money, clothing, time or talent for the benefit of other people. And Jesus says that on the last day He will reject and cast them to everlasting fire. You are here and you possess a lot of talents and gifts. Do you ever give it out for the benefit of other people? You have the message of salvation, do you ever give it out for the benefit of those who are not saved? You have the knowledge of the Bible, but do you ever give it out for the knowledge of those who are ignorant? You have the message of deliverance, but do you ever give it out for those who are imprisoned and in captivity? If not, on the last day you will hear the voice of the Lord, saying, depart from me ye cursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels. *To be continued DR. FRANCIS AKIN-JOHN Church Growth Consultant, 6/8, Mukadaq Close, Off Palace Way, Iyana-Odo, B/Stop, Isheri-LASU Road, Lagos. 08023000714. firstname.lastname@example.org THEY recognize the reality of the spiritual war. They respect the enemy’s power without ever forgetting they’re following the Conqueror. 3. They practicalize the Word. Just listen to them talk. They sprinkle the Word throughout their conversations, without drawing attention to themselves. It’s just natural to them. 4. They fight sin in their personal lives and in the lives of their congregations. They know that God hates and loathes sins with passion. They take courageous actions to do away with besetting REVEREND FATHER John Damian ADIZIE, OCD Director of Int'l Youth Empowerment & Rehabilitation Centre (IYERC) Tel: 08076635886 Email: email@example.com Health for all @ World Health Day NOTHING in this world is as valuable as good health. A healthy world is indeed a wealthy world. No wonder, Good Health and Wellbeing is among the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Incidentally, April 7 happens to be World Health Day. The theme of this year's WHD is "Universal Health Coverage: Everyone, Everywhere." This theme must have been inspired by the ideology of people like Plato who declares, that “The part can never be well unless the whole is well.” Universal Health Coverage is therefore a means of Strategies to overcoming marriage challenges By Pastor Okokon Ating CATEGORICALLY, as an advice to couples who are facing these challenges, they should first of all do the following: Seek from God to know the purpose of the delay in pregnancy; Go through medical observation and check up to ascertain the reason(s) conception is being delayed; After adopting the first two advices, they should exercise patience to see what the outcome of the findings will be. *Keep on loving themselves and fulfill marital responsibilities to one another as it is stipulated in the Word of God; Refuse to listen to negative suggestions from friends and relatives; shun provocative slangs from the adversaries who will, from time to time provoke their hearts. *Adopt Hannah’s method of enquiry to receive their heart desire (1 Samuel 1:1- 18); Believe God that he shall bring to pass all their petitions. sins in their lives and that of their churches. 5. They know they could always fall. They are never so arrogant as to think failure could not happen to them. Even the possibility of bringing shame to Christ keeps them on their face before Him. 6. They study the stories of other spiritual leaders. Usually, they do this through reading biographies and autobiographies. They allow even those who preceded them to teach them via print. 7. They drip of humility. They could easily fall into pride, but they continually ensuring that everyone, everywhere can have access to quality health services without any financial or political hindrance. Jesus Christ did not just declare Healing for all or what we may call universal health coverage, he actually demonstrated it in his healing ministry. His healing ministry was not just limited to specific people. Everyone, the rich and the poor, benefitted from his healing ministry. The gospel of Matthew 12:15 declares, "Great multitudes followed Him, and He healed them all." All the sick, without exception, received their healing! *Pastor Okokon Ating INTIMACY The Oxford Advanced Learners’ Dictionary defines intimacy as “the state of having a close personal relationship with…” This close personal could be between friends, parents and the children, brothers, sisters, business partners, a husband and wife. In marriage institution, there are many things which stand as sources of power or pivot wheel on which a husband and the wife get united in life. Here are some of them to consider: There are some individuals who are united to their spouse due to genuine love within them; Some may be because of the beautiful or the handsomeness of the spouse, 12 marks of truly Spiritual leaders? fight hard against that tendency. They always deflect any praise sent their way. 8. They have their own mentors. These leaders never lead alone; they have others who help them guard their heart, push them to continue grow-ing, and challenge them to lead better. 9. They make decisions and move on. They pray, seek God through His Word, talk to other trusted believers, and press on. Seldom do they get bogged down with second-guessing their decisions. 10. They invest in others. That is, they recognize their responsibility to raise up another generation of spiritual leaders. Their ministry does- Reflecting on this year's World Health Day I kept wondering if Nigeria is among the UN countries that promotes universal Health coverage. If yes, why then do we have to fly our politicians and even their children to London and other parts of the world for medical treatment? whereas poor citizens are dying due to poor medical facilities. Will Nigeria ever have a reliable medical facilities that can take care of its citizens irrespective of their status or political affiliation? Politicians are not the only ones that have failed in medical care. Most Religious Leaders are taking health care ministry for granted. Whereas few healing ministers are using it as an avenue to make money. Missionary hospitals are so expensive! People pay through their noise to ac- or the sexual satisfaction derived from each other; Some may be due to their financial and educational status; While others may be due to their cultural background; Some ties may be due to their religious beliefs. Whatever may be the yardstick that intimately joined the couple together; we are much concerned with the lasting components of intimacy which make marriages endure till the end of their lives on earth. In a typical African setting, we have some cultural school of thoughts in which whenever there is a good intimacy between husband and wife, they quickly concluded that something is wrong. A typical African person would like to say that such a man is a fool for giving his wife total attention. Some will even address the husband with such slang as being a “woman wrapper". There are some cultures that view women as children and may not like to n’t end with them. 11. They live with intentionality. It seems like every step they take has a clear purpose. Nothing—from their personal walk to their public ministry—ever seems haphazard. 12. They seek the infilling and power of the Holy Spirit always. Sound spiritual leaders know they cannot do anything without the presence and power of the blessed Holy Spirit in their lives. They therefore seek His leading and guidance in all they do. E - M a i l : firstname.lastname@example.org *International Church Growth Ministry holds two major conferences a year, one in second week of every February and the other in every first week in September.” quire olive oil and 'anointed water at healing centers. Whereas our Lord Jesus Christ told his disciples, "Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. You received without payment; give without payment" (Matthew 10:8). Health care ministry is among the signs of a true disciple (Mark 16:17-18). If the government fails in providing health care for the people the Church should not fail! The Holy Father declares “Health care ministry will always be a necessary and fundamental task, to be carried out with renewed enthusiasm by all, from parish communities to the largest healthcare institutions...Doctors and nurses, priests, consecrated men and women, volunteers, families and all those who care for the sick, take part in this ecclesial mission.” (Pope Francis). Indeed, all hands must be on deck! Provision of adequate and affordable healthcare facilities for all is the only way forward. Happy World Health Day to you all! interact together with them, even at their own convenience or leisure time. Some family like posing unnecessary interference just to disturb the peace of the couple and some do not take intimacy as part of marriage at all. For some, the only area of their intimacy is when it comes to sex matters for procreation. When it comes to caring, the matter comes to a close. Some cultures welcome intimacy because the woman has become the mother of children and the attention will only be for the children while the husband may check out for a new brand lady outside for enjoyment. Some cultures too exhibit lack of intimacy due to barrenness. *For enquiries contact: Pastorating@gmail.com Apostolic Church, 3, Tree Power Avenue, Itire, Lag-os. Or call: Pastor Okokon Ating on: 0 8 0 5 4 1 2 1 3 5 5 , 08179072635
SUNDAY VANGUARD, APRIL 8, 2018 PAGE 39 An old friend invited me to a special service at Victory Christian Church, Lagos. The preacher was the late Bishop Harford Anayo Iloputaife, and he preached about Adam and Eve. I could not even understand what he was talking about. But at the end of his message, he asked those who wanted to “give their life to Jesus Christ” to come forward. I honestly don’t remember exactly what happened. I just know something came over me and completely took control of me. Some supernatural force, literally carried me to the altar. It was all the more remarkable that my left leg was encased in plaster and I had to walk with crutches. But I suddenly found myself hobbling speedily down the aisle of the church as if my life depended on it. I now know that, indeed, my life depended on it. I went to the front of the church and asked Jesus to be my Lord and Saviour. But by that time, he was already my Lord and Saviour. Jesus saved me physically from armed robbers in order that he might save me spiritually. He saved me physically that I might finally recognise him as “the Shepherd and Overseer” of my soul. (1 Peter 2:25). Confirmation A few days thereafter, I woke up one morning only to discover I was singing a new song. I had never sung this song before, but had apparently been singing it while asleep and now while awake. I decided to consult a Pentecostal praise book. I found the song there. It says: “When the Spirit of the Lord is upon my soul, I will dance like David danced.” I was flabbergasted. So God can teach a man a new song word-for-word? I spent the entire morning singing it; dancing ANSWERING THE CALL (2) all over the house. From the shower, to my dressing-room, to breakfast: I sang and hummed and danced. I was a complete nuisance. My wife and son stared at me and looked at one another knowingly. It was a Sunday morning, so we were going to church. At the time, our preferred church was some thirty minutes away. So I continued singing in the car at the top of my voice. I left no one in doubt that the Spirit of the Lord was indeed upon my soul. When we got to the church, something strange happened. My young son was the first to go in. What he saw was so amazing, he immediately rushed out to tell us. “Daddy, Daddy,” he shouted, a smile of incredulity on his lips: “They are singing the same song.” We walked into the church to find it in something of a Holy Ghost uproar. People were jumping up and down. Some were clapping their hands with great fervour. Others had turned the church into a big discotheque and were dancing aggressively. Everyone was singing the same song that the Lord had just taught me: “When the Spirit of the Lord is upon my soul, I will dance like David danced.” That was a divine confirmation that the Holy Spirit had arrived to take up residence in my heart. God's covenant of peace, blessing (2) BELOVED, of a truth Easter has come and gone but I want to let you understand that our repentance is absolutely necessary in order to receive salvation and be partakers of the peace and blessing embedded in the covenant made available by the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Your reluctance or failure to receive salvation is an invitation for crises of the world and to hell fire at last. John 16:33 says: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” The only sure foundation of peace and blessing for anybody in this world depends entirely upon the acknowledgment of the victory of Christ, for in Him you will be thoroughly quieted physically, spiritually and financially. The above spiritual counselling is the conclusion of our Learn to do things well By Pastor Oloruntimilehin Joshua Daramola IF someone does a thing continuously without success, then two things are possible. One, that person is probably not doing that particular thing well. The other possibility is that that endeavour is most likely not the portion of the one who had been labouring on it without success. This is why it is imperative to draw our attention on the need for people to learn how to do things properly. They should know how to do things correctly to avoid the risk of becoming a failure. Those who get things done the right way are the ones that succeed in life. If one is a singer in the church, for instance, that person must know how to sing very well no matter the pitch he or she is using. The bottom line is for the song to be melodious. If he or she does not know how to sing very well, he/she will be regarded as someone who knows nothing about singing well. Similarly, an auto mechanic who is not skillful won’t •Daramola Born again There was also a second confirmation. After I answered the altar call at Victory Church, a church-worker took us outside and informed us it is the privilege of “born again” Christians to speak in unknown tongues. He mumbled a short prayer and told us to start speaking. Suddenly, some people started making funny noises. I was convinced the church had planted these “jokers” among us. I said to myself: “Who do these people think they are fooling?” A few weeks later, Pat Utomi invited me to a Full Gospel Businessmen’s Fellowship dinner. The preacher also asked new believers to come forward and prayed for them to receive the gift of tongues. Although I did not answer the altar-call again, I suddenly started speaking in tongues in my seat. I did not like the sound of my new tongue. I was afraid it was demonic and refused to use it. I even sought the counsel of “deliverance ministers” on the matter. They all insisted the gift was get patronage and may not be able to take care of his family. Some people do not learn their profession very well; all they are after is money. Also some people succeed in their chosen vocations because they My entire body became buttery-soft; suffused with the love of God. It is the most amazing feeling I have ever experienced of God. Nevertheless, I remained highly sceptical. One day, the Lord woke me up early in the morning and said: “Femi, pray in tongues and don’t be afraid.” So I got up and started praying in my new tongue. I was surprised to find that no demon jumped at me or out of me. The more I prayed, the more I realised I had been deceived. Someone had given me the false impression that my new tongue was demonic. Then I went further. If the devil did not want me to pray in tongues, it could only mean it is a potent weapon of spiritual warfare. So I went from one extreme to the other. I would pray in tongues at every possible opportunity. I would wake up at night, go to a window in my livingroom and pray vigorously in tongues towards the sky, convinced that in so doing I was scattering the kingdom of darkness. Open vision Then one morning, I decided to switch gears and go even further. I told the Lord naively: “I am going to kill off all the demons in this flat with my tongue.” I sat on my bed and prayed nonstop. By the third hour, the Lord opened my eyes and I started seeing demons. They were all dressed in the medieval uniform of Roman gladiators. They had swords and shields and body armour. And wait for it; there were Saviour’s farewell sermon to the people of the world who want to save their life. Christ has by His death, burial and resurrection defeated death and crises in the world but we must know that the victory is only for those that have repented and accepted the renewed and refreshed covenant. Our God is the covenant keeping God and will never disappoint whoever that entered into covenant with Him by accepting Him as his personal Saviour. So if you are reading this message you should make up your mind to seek God in true righteousness and holiness for Him to appear in glory and shower you with blessing. The covenant of peace and blessing could only be experienced better in a state of holiness and righteousness. When it looks like your relationship with God is broken through sin, unfaithfulness or isolation from Him, you must not hesitate to seek to enter again into covenant with Him in order to rebuild your relationship with Him. When it seems there is no peace and progress or the enemies and his human agents are having advantage over you, you must make haste to seek God and renew your covenant. This is because no evil comes upon individuals or nations without the permission of God and He is able and ready, when you are duly humbled, to remove the problems and manifest towards you new tokens of His favour as enshrined in the covenant. 2 Chronicles 7:13-15 says: “If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. have the idea and skill; they are honest, do not disappoint or cheat on their customers. Therefore, this kind of people will always get work to do. Some people have abandoned their work to do other things because of money and lack of in-depth knowledge of the work. A woman who does not know that she is a wife, will always encounter problems with her children, husband and in-laws. No matter what, she must know the duties and responsibilities of a wife and ensure they are carried out properly. In the same vein, a man should know he is a husband. He must always exhibit the qualities of good husband and be in control of his home so that he can be obeyed and respected by his wife, children and in-laws. A good husband must prove his superiority in the house. If he borrows money from his wife, he must ensure that he repays the money to her. Let your words and deeds portray that you literally hundreds and hundreds of them. “This is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions’” (Acts 2:16-17). One by one, the demons came out, marched towards me, collapsed into the ground and disappeared. I kept on praying for another two hours. After exactly five hours in total, they stopped coming out and I stopped praying. A heavenly experience Once I stopped praying, I noticed something astonishing. I lost virtually all previous sense of feeling. I could feel absolutely nothing in my body but love. My entire body became butterysoft; suffused with the love of God. It is the most amazing feeling I have ever experienced. Simply indescribable! Just then, the door opened and my wife walked in. I told her how much I love her. I waxed lyrical about how smitten I was when I first met her in Rome, Italy at the age of sixteen. Karen stood staring at me. She could not understand what prompted me to tell her that, but sensed something strange was going on. However, the more I spoke, the more I regressed. It was as if I was going back into my own skin. It would appear the demons were regrouping, gradually coming back again. My “normal” feelings were coming back, until I was back again where I started. I did not stop loving my wife. However, the overwhelming experience of feeling nothing but the love of God was no longer there. CONTINUED Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.” It is expected that as many that dishonoured God by action of deeds and thoughts must be reasonable enough to humble themselves and turn from their wicked ways, and return to the God from whom they have revolted in order to appeal to His mercy. And it is only on this premise that they will be brought into the covenant of peace and blessing availed to us by Christ victory. 2 Chronicles 15:1-2 says: “And the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded: And he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear ye me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin; The LORD is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you.” are a good husband. For the children, they must know their parents, obey and respect them. Deuteronomy 21:18-21 says: “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious who does not obey his father and mother and will not listen to them when they discipline him, his father and mother shall take hold of him and bring him to the elders at the gate of his own town. They shall say to the elders, this son of ours is stubborn and rebellious. He will not obey us. He is a profligate and a drunkard, then all the men of his town shall stone him to death....” *For further enquiries contact The Omnipotence Mission of God, 2 Oloruntimilehin St, Pipeline, Mosan off Ipaja road, Lagos or call 08023020108; 08058110288. *For further enquiries call: 08023020108, 08058110288. w w w . f a c e b o o k . c o m / pastoroloruntimilehin.