Sunday, May 19, 2013

PERFECTED UNDER PRESSURE By Olufunso Joseph Omidiran

Hebrews 5:7-9   7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; 8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;  9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;
Today God has a special mission on earth and goes to find raw materials to achieve His aim. Human instruments (men, women, boys and girls) are His main raw materials.

God’s instruments are permitted to be tempted and pressed ─put under pressure. Pressure can come from
-God Himself when He purposely tests us (e.g. Genesis 22; Hebrews 11:17). Just like a school teacher, He is often quiet while the test is going on!
Hebrews 11:17 17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, OFFERED UP Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son
Abraham was tested by God; he was put under pressure by God, so to speak. In divine estimation he was found worthy and it was adjudged that Abraham had ALREADY offered his son as a sacrifice to God. God blessed and gave Abraham a pass mark. We are also able to receive a blessing and a pass mark from the One who called.

-Self. Pressure from self is all because of our own selfish ambition/target, self-indulgence as well as personal aim/agenda/pursuit. This is a ‘cross’ created/designed by you and for you! When Jesus says “carry your cross and follow Me”, it’s all because He already has a cross designed for you by Himself. You may put your spirit, soul and body under pressure because of a burden/problem you decided to carry on your own. This is awful and ridiculous ─ don’t put the blame on God, but on yourself when your expectation fails. God will not back what He has not started/created/initiated.
-Devil/Enemy. Adversity abounds around us, even when we have chosen to do God’s will. The devil and his agents will do all they can to frustrate us and hell could be let lose, so to speak. The good news is that God will still keep/stand by us. He strengthens and fortifies us against all adversity (Hebrews 5:7-9). It should be expected that there will be resistance or opposition to God’s will from the camp of the devil. This is simply logical, isn’t it?

What Jesus did while under Pressure (Luke 22: 39-46)
Jesus is the Brightness of His glory and Express Image of the Invisible God (Colossians 1:15; Hebrews 1:3), the Perfect Picture of how a man should be and what we ought to do. The most acceptable and honourable man before God is the one who is like Jesus. He also taught us to take His yoke upon us and learn from Him (Matthew 11:29, 30). See what He did while under pressure:

    He prayed, prayed, prayed and prayed! (v 41).
    He still had the time to carry His disciples along. He took them with Him to Gethsemane (v 39).
    He still had the time to teach/admonish His disciples. He told them to watch and pray (v 40).
    He did what He preached and taught, while still under pressure─ He did watch and pray! (vv 41-42). How many teachers and preachers of the Bible DO what they preach today?
    Submission ─ “not My will but Thine”. He chose the path of the cross, chose to die (v 42).
    He received the ministry of angels having made up His mind to do the Father’s will (v 43). God’s angels only work for and respond to those who do the Father’s will. They only act in obedience to God’s instruction (Psalm 103:20; 91:11-12).
    He remained focused on the journey and assignment before Him. He was focused on the cross! The cross is a symbol of death, sorrow, punishment, reproach, sacrifice, pain, distress and curse. Nevertheless, our Lord pressed on with it because it was His mandate from the Father. Are you only concerned for the “Christianity of convenience?”

We’ve got to learn to be like Jesus and walk with Him very much every way. He is our Perfect Example to follow. The consistency of His character was never diminished or abated, even while under pressure. What has pressure done to you? Shalom.


(Healing unto the Nations)

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