Sunday, March 11, 2018
Rev. Naiwu's Sermon, Forsaking All for Christ
WHAT WILL BE OUR REWARD FOR FORSAKING ALL FOR CHRIST
"Then Peter said to him, See, we have given up everything and have come after you; what then will we have?" -- Matthew 19:27 BBE
A lady left her parents, relatives and her position in church as an usher and choir mistress to follow a man that had many fortunes. She had refused to marry some men who wanted her hand in marriage. But now she had seen a man driving one Jeep, she left everything and then followed him to live with him. Later, the rich man impregnated her, and near to her child delivery, she was asked by the husband to return home to deliver the baby. The following day, she returned home, and two days later she gave birth to a bouncing baby boy. It was really a great joy because since she had given birth to a son, the man would be pleased. In most African places, a woman who gives birth to a son has a full right in the family she is married to. But, is it the case of this lady, who left all she had to follow this rich man? Immediately she delivered her baby, her mother called the man, and the man refused to answer them anymore. This lady cried: "In all that I did for him, he later abandoned me!"
I. David's Plea: Do not reject me in my old age! When my strength fails, do not abandon me!-- Psalm 71:9. Here David knows that God has been his protection right from his childhood but in his old age, a period when he would not be able to do exploit, a period he may not be able to labor for support, a period friends and companions would go leaving him alone, and a period he may be fatherless and motherless, that God should not cast him off.
We may be tempted to say, Lord, I have devoted my energy to serve you as I'm young, please cast me not in my old age when my strength is failing, reject me not when I may not be able to feel the buoyant feelings of the earlier years.
II. David's Confidence in God:
Though my father and my mother abandoned me, the LORD gathers me up.--- Psalm 27:10 ISV. David knows that parents can abandon their children. Though, it is rare for parents to abandon their children, there are some parents who could not train up their children and such children will be roaming in the streets causing nuisances to the society. People sell their babies after delivering them, and some disown their children because of their faith in Christ. And David said, even if he could be abandoned by parents, it is certain that the God he worships would pick him up, raise him out from the dust and dehumanising conditions his parents and associates have kept him.
The Fate of the Disciples:
Peter had heard Christ say, "And again I say to you, It is simpler for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a man with much money to go into the kingdom of God"-- Matt. 19:24. Since even the rich will find it difficult to enter the kingdom of God, then Peter asked Christ, what will they get since they have left their parents, relatives, friends, and occupations to follow him?
Illustration: Years ago, when a man, perhaps, a business man wanted someone who would serve him, he would definitely define agreement terms and conditions, what he would do for his servant before the servant boy's-or-girl's parents and/or eye-witnesses. In most cases, after a period of four years, the boss would establish a business for his servant. And by this empowerment, the servant had been rewarded.
Peter seemed to know how he and other disciples would be rewarded for following Christ. This is important due to they had seen that it could be hard for the rich to enter heaven and so they asked: Who then may have salvation?
The question Peter asked could be paraphrased in this way: Lord, we have abandoned all the worldly pleasures to follow you, what will be our reward? We have abandoned our wives, home and occupation as fishermen to follow you, what will be our gain? We know that men in this world can disappoint, we expect no disappointment in you as our Lord and Savior.
1. We shall sit upon the twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israelites (Matt. 19:28, Rev. 2:26-28). Thus, the authority and power Christ has will equally be given to his followers. It a great honour to us that the day Christ will return, we shall be given the power to judge our enemies, and condemn every tongue that has risen against us. Rise up, and then become active followers of master Jesus.
2. We shall be God's people with a name that will never disappear (Isaiah 66:22, Rev. 3:5). We live to die, and then our name disappears. But as long as we walk in close obedience, and fellowship with God, an eternal name of honour will be given to us.
3. We shall receive a hundred times of the things we have given up, and will inherit eternal life, (Matt. 19:13).
Brethren, wouldn't you forsake those worldly pleasures, and embrace Christ? Shun prostitution, greed, cheating, works you know that do not give you chance to worship God. The disciples forfeited their jobs, and then followed Christ. Wouldn't you seek for the reality of heaven now? Christ says in Revelation 20:12-15, "Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds ... Blessed are those who wash their robes. they will be permitted to enter through the gates of the city and eat the fruit from the tree of life. Come on, think about without delay. Surrender your life to him now, and receive his anointing, favour and his gracious blessings. May God help you. God bless you.
Rev. Fortune Nwaiwu of Nigeria has now established his own blog, the first entry in which is: