Saturday, March 27, 2010

Unity and the Church

Scripture declares, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” (Psalms 133:1). Unity is a vital concept in God’s Word. It is the Lord’s intention and expectation that there be unity in the church. Unity is the state of being one. To have unity is to have harmony and peace. It is the absence of rivalry, division, and discord.

Only when the church has unity is it able to experience revival and growth. Indeed, unity is a foundational principle on which the church is built. On the day of Pentecost the believers “were all with one accord in one place” (Acts 2:1). The phrase “with one accord” (Greek: hoomthumadon) signifies that the believers were of the same mindset having the same passion. There were no grudges, arguments, murmurings, grumblings, grievances, complaints, criticisms and so forth among the people. There was unity. And this unity – this singleness of mind and passion – resulted in the Holy Spirit falling upon them and revival breaking out in their midst.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

What is Temperance?

Temperance is an uncommon and undervalued quality in our society. The Bible lists it as one of the nine fruit of the Spirit – the characteristics that demonstrate the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Therefore, temperance is an imperative and vital attribute.

What is temperance? Simply put, temperance means self-control, self-restraint, self-moderation, and self-discipline. It is the ability to exercise control or power over one’s own thoughts, speech, emotions, desires, actions, attitude, and conduct.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Daily Blessing

God commanded Moses to instruct the High Priest to speak a blessing over His people. History tells us that this special blessing was recited every evening at the conclusion of the daily sacrifices. In ancient times, a blessing was the primary method of asking God’s divine favor to rest upon others. The words of the daily blessing, selected by God Himself, are a beautiful reminder to us today of what He desires to do in our lives each and every day.

Numbers 6:24-26 (ESV) The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

God desires to: (1) bless and keep us—give us favor and protection, (2) shine His face upon us—give us the spiritual light of truth to direct and guide us, (3) be gracious to us—show us His mercy and compassion, (4) lift His countenance upon us—look cheerfully, pleasingly and approvingly upon our righteousness, and (5) give us peace—both internal peace of mind and peace with Him.