Topic: It’s Not A Sin! (Open Heaven 3 February 2019)
Memorise: “Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.”- Psalm 32:11
Read: Nehemiah 8:5-12
5 And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up:
6 And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God. And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with their faces to the ground.
7 Also Jeshua, and Bani, and Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, caused the people to understand the law: and the people stood in their place.
8 So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.
9 And Nehemiah, which is the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, This day is holy unto the LORD your God; mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the law.
10 Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.
11 So the Levites stilled all the people, saying, Hold your peace, for the day is holy; neither be ye grieved.
12 And all the people went their way to eat, and to drink, and to send portions, and to make great mirth, because they had understood the words that were declared unto them.
Bible in One Year: Luke 16-17, Isaiah 30:23-33
Open Heaven 3 February 2019 Sunday MESSAGE:
The word of God commands us to “be glad in the Lord and rejoice,” but sadly, many Christians do not take this commandment seriously, for various reasons. Although some Christians would love to rejoice and celebrate on a daily basis, they have allowed the storms and challenges of life to completely drown the sound of celebration from their lives. Some others erroneously believe that gladness and celebration are contrary to the word of God because of Bible passages that admonish us to be sober and avoid worldly pleasure. Some even believe that the bright countenance, high spirits, singing and dancing that often accompany celebrations are carnal, worldly and therefore sinful. However, I have good news for you: celebrating the goodness of God is not a sin when done in moderation as the Bible prescribes. I therefore decree that God will do something in your family that will cause you to be glad and rejoice for the rest of your life in Jesus’ Name.
Rejoicing in the Lord is so important that God ordained it to be a regular practice among His people. In fact, the whole of Leviticus chapter 23 is dedicated to instructions on required feasts and celebrations for the Israelites. Celebration can take the form of rejoicing with family and friends in an atmosphere that ascribes praise and worship to God in love, peace and unity. Psalm 22:3 reveals that God inhabits the praises of His people, and He is pleased when His children are happy. According to Exodus 5:1-2, Pharaoh’s refusal to allow the Jews go and celebrate a feast unto their God was responsible for God’s anger against the Egyptians, which ultimately led to their destruction. Anyone or anything that stands in the way of your celebration shall be destroyed today in Jesus’ Name.
Gladness of heart, rejoicing and celebration are vital to the overall wellbeing of a person. Nehemiah 8:10 says that the joy of the Lord is His people’s strength, and Proverbs 17:22 teaches that gladness of heart and joy are like medicine that brings healing to troubled souls. It therefore pays to acknowledge God through thanksgiving praises and worship. However, acceptable celebration demands total submission and obedience to God, and it should serve as a means of testifying to his goodness and witnessing to neighbors about His saving power. The joy of the Lord is a tonic that brings good health to the body and soul. As we experience the goodness of God, our joy becomes contagious and impacts positively on those around us. It also brings the reality of heaven into our hearts (Acts 27:33-36). May God’s joy fill our hearts and lives always, in Jesus Name.
Open Heaven 3 February 2019 Sunday Prayer Point:
Father, please help me to be joyful in You all the days of my life, and fill my heart with so much joy that my testimonies will convert souls to Your kingdom in Jesus’ Name.