Articles from the Blog
Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds. — 2 Corinthians 12:12During Paul’s day, the problem of false apostles was so rampant that he felt it necessary to validate his ministry by pointing out the “signs” of an apostle that were evident in his life. In Second Corinthians 12:12, Paul gave certain indicators to help us determine whether or not a person is truly apostolic. The word “signs” in Second Corinthians 12:12 is the Greek word semeion. This word was used in secular business to describe the official written notice that announced the final verdict of a court. It also described the signature or seal applied to a document to guarantee its authenticity and a sign that marked key locations in a city. This secular word was carried over into New Testament language, as used here by Paul. Paul used this word to declare that certain official signs exist as the final verdict to prove a person’s apostleship. These accompanying activities are like a signature or a seal that authenticates and guarantees that a person truly is an apostle. If you see these particular marks in a person’s ministry, you can know that you are standing on or near bona fide apostolic territory. Paul says, “Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you….” In this verse, Paul uses the word “apostle,” taken from the Greek word apostollos, a compound of the words apo and stello. The word apo means away, and the word stello means to send. When compounded together, it means to send away. It is the idea of being commissioned and dispatched with authority and power and sent as a personal representative of a powerful figure or as the official representative of a government. But notice Paul says, “Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you.…” The word “wrought” is the Greek word katergadzo, a compound of the words kata and ergos. The word kata is a preposition that carries the idea of something that is subjugating or dominating. The word ergos means work. When compounded together, it presents the idea of a work that is totally consuming or dominating — a work that takes every ounce of one’s being. We know from Scripture that Paul was not afraid of work. He even referred to the work of the ministry. In addition to glorious moments when Paul experienced spectacular visions, revelations, and special demonstrations of power, he worked hard in his ministry. He referred to this very hard work when he said, “But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me” (1 Corinthians 15:10). This Greek word used here for “laboured” is kopiao and depicts the most difficult, most exhaustive type of work. We could even call it hard labor. Because Paul used this word to describe his own work ethic, it tells us that Paul was not afraid of hard work. He was willing to do anything and everything to accomplish the task God had given to him. So the first thing we discover in Second Corinthians 12:12 is that apostolic ministry demands the highest level of commitment and work. This isn’t a calling for those who want a lifestyle in which they can take it easy. It is a demanding, all-consuming, and dominating call that requires every ounce of a person’s life. Apostolic ministry includes:
- Going into territory where the Church is non-existent.
- Dealing with aggressive and hostile governments.
- Facing the opposition of false religions opposed to one’s very presence.
- Pushing the evil forces of the demonic realm out of the way.
- Taking converts from the bleakness and blackness of paganism and turning them into living, breathing members of the Body of Christ.
My Prayer for TodayLord, I thank You for filling me with supernatural endurance to do the job You’ve given me to do. In the midst of all the problems, hassles, and challenges that have come against me, I am very aware that I wouldn’t be able to do it without the divine gift of endurance You have placed in my life. Others may think I am strong, but I know that much of my strength and fortitude is due to what You have done inside me. So today I give You praise, and I thank You for continuing to strengthen me until I bring this assignment to a victorious end!
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
My Confession for TodayI confess that God is filling me with supernatural endurance to stay put until I have successfully done everything He has asked me to do. He gave me this assignment because He believed I could do it. He filled me with endurance to help me stay put and to be strong enough to finish it as I ought. I therefore declare that I am strong; I am filled with fortitude; and I will do precisely what God has asked me to do!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
Questions to Answer1. Have you ever experienced a time when God supernaturally filled you with a divine dose of endurance that gave you the exact amount of strength you needed at that moment? 2. If the answer is yes, what did it feel like when you received that supernatural strengthening? How did you know it occurred? What were the immediate, tangible results of that inner strengthening? 3. How is your strength level today? Have you been feeling like weariness is trying to get the best of you, or do you feel strong and ready to keep forging ahead? If you are battling fatigue, don’t you agree that it would be good for you to stop today to ask the Lord to refill you with another dose of endurance?
Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. — Galatians 6:7It has been my pleasure to stand before my precious Russian congregation many thousands of times over the years and to boldly tell them, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Galatians 6:7). This principle is so true that Paul begins by telling us not to question its validity! He says, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked.…” The word “deceived” comes from the Greek word planao, which means to lead astray; to wander; to stagger; to be led off course; or to be affected by someone’s outside influence and led in a wrong direction. The word planao is usually used in the New Testament to depict the activity of false teachers who deliberately lead people from liberty into teaching that enslaves them in some kind of spiritual bondage. When Paul wrote this verse, the language he used was a command coupled with a very strong prohibition. This means he was forbidding his readers from participating in something that seemed to have already been initiated. Because he spoke so prohibitively, it could correctly be translated, “Stop being deceived.” He was rebuking a weakness that was already developing among the Galatians and that he wanted to halt! Could it be that false teachers were trying to tell the Galatians that the law of sowing and reaping didn’t really work? It seems so. We also live in a day and time when the law of sowing and reaping is challenged by those who do not embrace its truth. Many scoff at those who believe that God will multiply their financial seed back to them again; some even try to use their influence to persuade people to abandon their belief in such a doctrine. Unfortunately, sometimes people who are young and unstable in the Word are caught in the middle of this war of words. A doubt sown here and there makes them question the validity of whether or not the law of sowing and reaping applies to finances. In the end, many of these new believers let go of their grip on this promise and walk away. But those deceivers who blatantly take a stand against the promise of God will one day answer for their actions. Paul stands firm on the principle of sowing and reaping and lets his voice be heard as he states, “…God is not mocked….” The word “mocked” is the Greek word mukteridzo, and it means to turn up one’s nose at someone, as if mocking or laughing at the person. The idea is of someone who arrogantly says, “Come on, you surely don’t believe this stupid principle of sowing and reaping. How dumb can you be to believe that God will multiply what you sow!” One noted scholar has commented that this type of attitude usually comes from a person who had a sour experience when he tried to apply the law of sowing and reaping to his finances. For some reason, he didn’t get the results he expected, so now he acts as though this principle isn’t true or applicable to anyone. Thus, he turns up his nose at the law of God, challenging the validity of it and asserting that whatsoever a man soweth is not always what he reaps. Paul doesn’t want this negativism and unbelief to worm its way into the thinking of the Galatian church, so he speaks loudly, firmly, and prohibitively, commanding the Galatian believers to disassociate themselves with anyone who dares to turn up his nose at the law of sowing and reaping. Then Paul boldly declares what he believes: “…Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” The word “soweth” is the word speiro, which refers to any seed that is sown. Notice the emphasis on any seed that is sown. This immediately alerts us to the fact that this law is not applicable only to finances, but to anything in life. It applies to love, to work, to time, to patience, to kindness, to forgiveness, to bitterness, to selfishness — and, of course, to money. All of these are potential “seeds” that we sow. Making the definition of “soweth” even broader is the word “whatsoever,” which in Greek is the word ean. This word literally throws open the door, for it means whatever; whatever thing; or no matter what a man sows. Again, Paul lets us know that this is a law of God that applies to every sphere of life with no exceptions. It is simply a fact: Whatever you sow, regardless of what it is, you will reap it. The Greek tense does not denote a single, one-time sowing; rather, it pictures a person who continually, habitually sows. Therefore, it could be translated, “…Whatsoever a man sows, sows, sows, and sows — and keeps on habitually sowing and sowing and sowing….” In other words, this describes a constant, steady, perpetual sowing of seed. And if you sow this seed steadily and faithfully, God’s promise is that you will reap a harvest. The word for “reap” is in the same Greek tense, meaning that it could be translated, “You will reap, reap, reap, and reap — and keep on habitually reaping and reaping and reaping.” The reason most people walked away disgusted and scoffing at this promise is that they never really put it to the test! They sowed once and waited for a harvest. When nothing happened, they threw up their arms and said it didn’t work. But those who keep on habitually sowing and sowing and sowing as a manner of lifestyle are the ones who eventually reap and reap and reap as the manifold blessings of God come pouring back into their lives. The level at which you sow determines the level you will reap. Sow a little, and you’ll reap a little. Sow a lot, and you’ll reap a lot. Sow inconsistently, and you’ll reap inconsistently. Sow regularly, and you will reap regularly.
Galatians 6:7 could be translated:
“Stop letting people lead you astray from the truth! You might try to turn up your nose at the law of God, but it won’t change the law! It remains true that whatever you regularly and habitually sow — regardless of what it is — that is exactly what you will regularly and habitually reap.”Then in Galatians 6:9, Paul takes just a moment to encourage those of us who are waiting for our harvests. He says, “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Notice that Paul mentions a “due season.” Even today, harvest times come at varying times for different areas, depending on the temperature, altitude, and climate of each region. For example, in one low-lying district of Israel, harvest may be in full swing while districts at higher altitudes are still weeks, or even a full month, away from their harvest time. This principle holds true in every other realm as well. For instance, if the seed you are sowing is financial seed, remember to bathe it in prayer as it leaves your pocketbook and enters the Kingdom of God. Pray for the Holy Spirit to create a right atmosphere or climate for that seed to take root and grow. And if it takes awhile for the harvest to come back to you, remember that no farmer plants seed one day and expects to have a full wheat or corn field the next day! It takes time for seed to grow in the natural. In the same way, time may be required for the seed you have sown to spiritually mature so it can come back into your life as a multiplied blessing. In the meantime, don’t be weary in “well doing.” That simply means keep it up; don’t stop what you are doing; be regular; be consistent; be faithful; or be “well doing” in the sowing of your seed! The last thing you should do is “faint”! That word “faint” comes from the Greek word ekluo, which means to loosen up; to relax; to faint; and to lose altogether. The devil will say, “This doesn’t work. You’ve tried long enough. It won’t hurt if you cut back on your giving. Loosen up a little. Relax from giving so much!” But according to Galatians 6:9 and the Greek word ekluo, if you loosen up and relax in your giving, you will eventually “faint” — in other words, you’ll stop giving completely. And if you do that, you will lose everything! So don’t ever let the devil or anyone else ever talk you into backing out of sowing financial seeds into the Kingdom of God. As I said earlier, the sowing of seeds applies to every area of life. If you constantly and habitually:
- Sow love, you will reap love.
- Sow patience, you will reap patience.
- Sow kindness, you will reap kindness.
- Sow forgiveness, you will reap forgiveness.
- Sow money, you will reap money.
- Sow bitterness, you will reap bitterness.
- Sow strife, you will reap strife.
My Prayer for TodayLord, I want to be a faithful, consistent giver! I don’t want to be on-again, off-again in the sowing of my financial seed. I know that this is a spiritual law that always works and will never change, so please help me renew my thinking to the truth of this law and come into a place of conformity with it. I want to habitually sow, and I want to habitually reap. Help me plant the right seeds into the right soil. Then I ask You to provide the right temperature, climate, and atmosphere to make my harvest grow!
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
My Confession for TodayI confess that I am NOT a one-time sower. I continually, habitually sow my seed into the Kingdom of God. God’s Word promises that “whatsoever a man sows, sows, sows, and sows, and keeps on habitually sowing and sowing and sowing, that shall he also reap, reap, reap, and reap, and keep on habitually reaping and reaping and reaping.” Because I am a habitual sower, I will be a habitual reaper! The level at which I sow determines the level at which I will reap. If I sow a little, I will reap a little. If I sow a lot, I will reap a lot. If I sow inconsistently, I will reap inconsistently. If I sow regularly, I will reap regularly. Knowing this to be true, I choose to make my giving one of the most important and consistent things I do in my life!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
Questions to Answer1. Have you been consistent with your giving, or have you been on-again, off-again in the way you give your tithes and offerings? If you are irregularly blessed, do you think the reason may be that you irregularly sow seed? At least it’s something for you to think about! 2. Do you faithfully give a full tithe to the work of the Lord? If yes, you can praise God for this victory in your life, for it will bless your future. If your answer is no, why are you being disobedient in this crucial area of your life? 3. In what other areas of your life are you reaping a harvest from seeds you wish you had never sown?
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season.… — 2 Timothy 4:2Paul wrote his second letter to Timothy during a very difficult season in Timothy’s ministry. A few years earlier, the picture had been radically different. At that time, the church of Ephesus was growing and thriving. Timothy was the new young pastor whom the church loved! Those earlier years were fun and eventful, and everything was moving. What an exciting time it had been to be a Christian leader! But by the time Second Timothy was written, the situation had changed drastically for this pastor and the believers under his charge. Nero had become the Roman emperor, and his insanity was already wreaking havoc in the lives of countless believers, especially in Rome. As for Ephesus, it was one of the most pagan cities in Asia Minor, as well as the residence of the Roman proconsul. Christians who lived in Ephesus often endured bouts of intense persecution as the Roman government tried to scare them into abandoning their Christian faith and returning to the pagan temples. As a result of these hard times, many believers died for their faith. Others defected from the church and returned to the old temples to save their lives. And as if all these hardships and disappointments were not mountainous enough to deal with, Timothy also had to deal with serious internal problems of rebellion among some of the members of his church leadership! Timothy had written a letter to Paul explaining all his difficulties. Paul’s response to Timothy was the book of Second Timothy. In that book, he urged Timothy to remember that he was to “…be instant in season, out of season…” (2 Timothy 4:2). The word “instant” is the Greek word ephistimi, which is a compound of the words epi and istimi. The word epi means upon, and the word istimi means to stand. Compounded into one word, the new word means to stand upon, as to take a firm stand or a hard position. Indeed, it was a term borrowed from the military that meant to stay at one’s post. Timothy’s post was the pulpit of his church. From that pulpit, he maintained his leadership, imparted vision, issued rebukes, taught and preached the Word, and brought correction. It was his post. No one else could stand in that position, because it was the position that had been assigned to him by God. Even though times were very tough and he may have been tempted to shun his responsibilities, Paul urged him,“Stay at your post!” Notice that Paul told him that he was to be faithful to his post “in season, out of season.” In Greek, this looks like a play on words, but it is a very powerful statement to those of us who are doing our best to serve God. The words “in season” come from the Greek word eukairos. The words “out of season” come from the Greek word akairos. Do you notice how similar these words are to each other? The word kairos is the Greek word that means seasons or times. This word can be easily altered by adding different prefixes to it. For instance, if you add the word eu to the front of it, it becomes the word eukairos. The word eu means good, happy, pleasing, or pleasurable. This means that when you connect the word eu to kairos, it transforms the word to eukairos, which means good times, happy times, pleasing times, or pleasurable times. But you can also change the word kairos by adding the prefix a, which turns it into the word akairos. That little a may look insignificant, but it radically changes the meaning of this word. The word akairos means bad times. So when Paul told him, “Be instant in season and out of season,” he was really telling him to be faithful, whether he was having happy times or bad times!
An interpretive translation of Second Timothy 4:2 could be the following:
“Take a firm stand and resolve to stay at your post! Regardless of whether times are good or bad, that is your post — your place of responsibility — so dig in, take a firm stand, and resolve that you are going to be faithful!”This was just the word Timothy needed to encourage him to stand tall, be brave, and remain faithful to his assignment. His struggles passed, and he became the respected leader of the Christians in the region of Asia Minor. In the years that he served as the senior pastor of Ephesus, Timothy had many different kinds of seasons — some good, some not so good. But regardless, he stayed at his post until the very end. What kind of season are you going through right now? Is it a happy season? Or are you experiencing hard times? Those happy seasons are such wonderful times, and you should do everything you can to enjoy them. But what are you going to do in the hard times? Are you going to be as faithful and steadfast when you face difficult challenges as you were when things seemed a little easier? Take Paul’s words to Timothy, and apply them to yourself. This is not a time for you to run in fear or to look for someone else to take your place. If God called you to that post, it’s time for you to dig in, take a firm stand, and resolve that you are going to be faithful whether times are good or bad. I assure you that the bad times will eventually pass. Dark clouds never last. Eventually the sun always comes out, and the birds start singing again. Wouldn’t it be a pity if you gave up and sacrificed everything you’ve worked so hard to gain because of a few dark clouds? Jesus is with you, my friend. He will give you all the strength you need to stand tall and to remain faithful. He will do His part, but only you can do your part. What is your part? Making the choice to stay faithful to your post!
My Prayer for TodayLord, I receive this word today as strength for my life! You have called me to do something great for You, and I’m not going to let the devil or my circumstances chase me away from where I know I need to be. It’s been very difficult, but this season will pass — and when it does, I’ll be stronger, wiser, and more equipped for the future. I thank You for helping me to dig in, take a firm stand, and maintain the post You have assigned to me!
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
My Confession for TodayI confess that I am not moving from the place where Jesus called me! The devil and various circumstances have tried hard to move me, but I have made up my mind and have resolved in my heart that I am not flinching or moving from the place where Jesus called me to give my heart! This is my post; this is my ground; and I’m going to be around until I can say I’ve finished my part!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
Questions to Answer1. Have the dark clouds been hovering over you for so long that it has made you wish you could give your assignment to someone else? 2. Have you considered how tragic it would be if you quit just before the sun started shining again? Is it possible that you are at the end of this turbulent season and that the best season of your life is just around the corner? 3. Can you think of times in your past when you thought it was all over for you, but then that difficult time passed and you came into a wonderful season of fruitfulness? Don’t you believe God is able to do that again for you?
Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. — 1 Timothy 3:6Maybe you’ve had an associate or a worker whom you once greatly trusted — until he or she deceived and betrayed you. If you’ve gone through that kind of difficult experience, you may not be too excited about trusting people again. Every leader in the world has been through one of these experiences. Even Jesus had a thief on His team who stole money from the organization and who later betrayed Him and turned Him over to the religious authorities to be executed on a cross. If that can happen to Jesus, it’s possible for it to happen to anyone. But Jesus didn’t give up and quit just because there was one bad apple in His group. There were still eleven others who remained faithful. Although these eleven also made some mistakes along the way, they ultimately changed the course of human history as they carried the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Letting your emotions get the best of you by deciding to go on alone is not the right answer when you go through this type of experience. You need to get up, brush off the dirt, learn from your mistakes, and go for it again with all your heart. Rather than blame someone else for what has happened, just accept responsibility for where you may have failed. Stop moaning about the bump in the road you’ve hit, and allow that ordeal to become a learning experience. It’s time to quit thinking about what others did wrong to you. Instead, ask what you did wrong that permitted the situation to arise. Ask yourself:
- Did I give too much authority to this person too quickly?
- Did I trust someone I really didn’t know very well?
- Did I spend enough time with that person to really become his friend?
- Did I let that person know what I expected of him?
- Did I ignore signs that something was going amiss?
- Did my spouse tell me something was wrong, but I wouldn’t listen?
- What did I learn from this experience?
My Prayer for TodayLord, I ask You to please help me gauge how quickly others should be promoted in our church, organization, or business. I don’t want to make the mistake of throwing people into situations where the devil will test them because I promoted them too quickly. Also, Lord, I ask You to please help me have a new appreciation for those who are over me and who are taking some time before promoting me. I want to be a blessing and I never want the devil to have an opportunity to blur my vision because I think too highly of myself. Thank You for loving me enough to promote me in just the right time and in just the right way.
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
My Confession for TodayI confess that I use wisdom in the way I choose and promote leaders in my area of responsibility. I am careful, cautious, and hesitant about promoting people to high positions too quickly. Just as God watches and tests me before giving me greater responsibility, I watch, test, and wait to see if others are really ready before I assign them new and important tasks. Because I rely on the Holy Spirit’s help in this matter, I am making fewer and fewer mistakes in choosing the right people to promote!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
Questions to Answer1. Have you ever seen someone promoted so quickly that it caused deep spiritual problems later on? If so, who was that person, and what did you learn by observing that heart-rending situation? 2. Have you ever watched someone whom a pastor loved, cared for, and promoted later become the chief critic of that same pastor? Was that person you? If yes, have you ever gone to your pastor to ask for his forgiveness? 3. If you’ve been feeling let down by someone you trusted, why don’t you take some time today to pray and ask the Lord to help you forgive that person? After all, the prison of bitterness you’ve been locked in because of that past offense hurts only you!
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. — John 10:10I realize that John 10:10 is a well-known verse to millions of believers around the world, but today I want to give you fresh insight into this powerful scripture. Rather than simply read it as you’ve read it a thousand times before, let’s dig a little deeper into the Greek words behind this verse to see what we can mine from the treasures of the Greek New Testament! Jesus said, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). According to these words of Jesus, the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy everything good in your life. He wants to destroy your job, your joy, your happiness, your health, your finances, your marriage, and your kids. The thief just wants to ruin anything he can get his hands on! The word “thief” comes from the Greek word klepto, which means to steal. It gives a picture of a bandit, pickpocket, or thief who is so artful in the way he steals that his exploits of thievery are nearly undetectable. This reminds me of the pickpockets who work the streets in certain areas of Moscow. They can slip their hands into a person’s pockets, take what they want, and be long gone before that person discovers they were even there! Jesus uses this word to let us know the devil is very cunning in the way he steals from people. He knows that if he does it outright, his actions will be recognized; therefore, he steals from people in such a deceptive way that he often accomplishes his evil goal before they even know he has stolen from them! Often the devil injects thoughts into a person’s mind to steal his peace, his joy, and even his beliefs. The word klepto describes a thief’s uncontrollable urge to get his hands into someone’s pockets so he can take that which doesn’t rightfully belong to him. I find it very interesting that this is where we get the word kleptomaniac, which describes a person with a persistent, neurotic impulse to steal. Just as a kleptomaniac can’t help but steal, the devil can’t stop stealing because it is his impulse and his very nature to steal. This is precisely the nature and behavior of the thief Jesus told us about! Not only does the thief come to steal, but Jesus said that he also comes “to kill.” At first glance, it appears that this means to kill, as to take someone’s life. But the Greek word is thuo, which means to sacrifice. It originally referred to the sacrificial giving of animals on the altar. It could mean to sacrifice; to surrender; or to give up something that is precious and dear. It was particularly used in a religious connotation to denote the sacrifice of animals, and it had nothing to do with killing in terms of murder. Because Jesus uses this word to describe the work of the thief in John 10:10, He is telling us that if the thief hasn’t already walked away with everything we hold precious and dear, he will then try to convince us that we need to sacrifice or give up everything he hasn’t already taken from us. The thief cannot bear the fact that you possess any kind of blessing. Therefore, if he is unsuccessful at stealing the good things from your life, he will try to cunningly convince you to give up everything you possess and love — simply because he doesn’t want you to have it. He may even try to create stressful situations that cause you to conclude that your only solution is to sacrifice the things you dearly love. Then Jesus went on to say that the thief also comes “to destroy.” The word “destroy” is from the Greek word apollumi, meaning to destroy. It carries the idea of something that is ruined, wasted, trashed, devastated, and destroyed. By using this word, we discover that if the thief is unsuccessful in his attempts to steal from you or convince you to sacrifice what you hold dear, he will then try to ruin it!
An expanded interpretive translation of John 10:10 could read this way:
“The thief wants to get his hands into every good thing in your life. In fact, this pickpocket is looking for any opportunity to wiggle his way so deeply into your personal affairs that he can walk off with everything you hold precious and dear. And that’s not all — when he’s finished stealing all your goods and possessions, he’ll take his plan to rob you blind to the next level. He’ll create conditions and situations so horrible that you’ll see no way to solve the problem except to sacrifice everything that remains from his previous attacks. The goal of this thief is to totally waste and devastate your life. If nothing stops him, he’ll leave you insolvent, flat broke, and cleaned out in every area of your life. You’ll end up feeling as if you are finished and out of business! Make no mistake — the enemy’s ultimate aim is to obliterate you….”But Jesus went on to say, “…I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). The words “they might have” are from the Greek tense that means to have and to continually possess. The “life” Jesus offers us is zoe, which suggests a life that is filled with vitality. The word “abundantly” is from the Greek word periossos, and it means to be above, beyond what is regular, extraordinary, or even exceeding. This is not just abundance; it is super-abundance. What a comparison! The devil comes to steal, to kill, and to destroy, but Jesus comes to give life as we have never known it!
An expanded interpretive translation of this second part of John 10:10 could be as follows:
“…But I came that they might have, keep, and constantly retain a vitality, gusto, vigor, and zest for living that springs up from deep down inside. I came that they might embrace this unrivaled, unequaled, matchless, incomparable, richly loaded and overflowing life to the ultimate maximum!”In your walk with the Lord, you will experience times when the devil pushes buttons in your emotions to keep you all bound up and depressed. Other times the enemy will disguise his voice to make you think God is talking to you in order to get you off track or cause you to cast off your deepest dreams as pure imagination. But whenever these attacks occur, just tell the devil to shut up and stop dropping those dimwitted thoughts of nonsense into your head. Tell him to hit the road! Let him know you’re not going to bite that bait any longer, so he might as well go fishing somewhere else. You’re not a sucker anymore! You know how he works now, and you’ve determined that he isn’t going to steal, kill, or destroy one more good thing in your life! There’s no doubt about it!
- The devil wants you to be defeated.
- The devil wants you to struggle through your entire life.
- The devil wants you to be sick, depressed, down in the dumps, glum, and miserable.
- The devil wants you to feel like you will never hit the target with your life.
- But Jesus wants to give you a life that is unrivaled, unequaled, matchless, incomparable, richly loaded, and overflowing with life to the ultimate maximum!
My Prayer for TodayLord, I am so thankful that You came to give me real life! You didn’t save me so I could live the rest of my life in defeat and poverty. You didn’t redeem me so I could be sick, depressed, and sad. You came to give me life, and I am determined to enter into the reality of that life You promised me. Forgive me for ever allowing the devil to talk me out of the blessings You have designed for my life and my family. I’m taking my eyes off the low road, and I’m headed for the high road of blessing You have planned for me!
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
My Confession for TodayI confess that Jesus Christ gives me a life that is filled with extraordinary abundance! He came that I might have, keep, and constantly retain a vitality, gusto, vigor, and zest for living that springs up from deep down inside me. He gives me a life that is not rattled or easily shaken by any outward event. I therefore embrace this unrivaled, unequaled, matchless, incomparable, richly loaded, and overflowing life that Jesus came to give me!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!