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Calling the Pressured

PressureI’m posting about how God gathered the mighty men around King David in the Old Testament. There are many parallels to what God is doing in the church today. In my last article I talked about getting over the hurts of the past and moving forward in Christ.

In the book of Acts, chapter 6, we’re told of a daily food distribution to widows. The Greek speaking widows were being left out. What was the result? Did they get offended and leave the church?

No, it became the start of a new ministry. An offence is simply a ministry that someone isn’t doing. In our generation, it seems that we find it easier to leave, than work things out. It’s time to get over your offence and decide to SERVE CHRIST.

Who were the people who showed up to help David?

All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their leader. About four hundred men were with him.
1 Samuel 22:2

There are others – Christians all around us who are not living up to their potential in Christ. We should be calling them back to fruitfulness. They’re not going anywhere and not accomplishing anything for the Lord.

Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things – and the things that are not – to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.
1 Corinthians 1:26-29

Who are these people that God brought to David? The first thing that the Scripture says about them is that they were in distress. That literally means that they were in a narrow place, pressured.

There are Christians under pressure right now. It’s keeping them from going to church. It’s time to be bold. We must go to these believers.

“God wants you strong in spirit.”

“It’s time to hear a Word from heaven.”

We need an influx of spiritual warriors – this is where it starts. God is calling believers who are under pressure. There’s no better time than now to find them.

Why do we want them in ministry?

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4

The word trouble in this passage is actually the Greek word for pressure. Pressure qualifies us for ministry. When we can endure pressure, we can help others who are undergoing the same things.

We must call them in. God can and will restore them.

Trouble and distress have come upon me, but your commands are my delight.
Psalm 119:143

David knew the secret to victory in times of pressure. We need to stay in the Word. That’s where we get the strength to overcome.

Question: What are some pressures that God gave you the victory over?

© Nick Zaccardi 2016

 

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Posted by on August 1, 2016 in Ministry, Revival, Spiritual Walk, The Church

 

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Christ’s Example – Trusting the Promises or God? #promisesofGod

Bible1In my last post I showed that Christ refused to be tempted to claim a promise.  This is the opposite of what many believers do today.  We’re trusting God to provide things we don’t even need just because we found a convenient Scripture to “stand on.”

Paul talked about this in his letter to Timothy.  Paul warned Timothy about people…

…who think that godliness is a means to financial gain.  But godliness with contentment is great gain.
1 Timothy 6:5b-6

I believe that there’s something inherently wrong with a message that continually focuses on my happiness, my comfort, and my pleasure.  It’s true that God loves us and wants the best for us.  I also believe that there is a scriptural prosperity that God wants for His people.

But I also believe that many have taken this too far.  As a result, God’s people are spending too much time, prayer, energy and “faith” running after the things of the world that they think will satisfy them.  At the same time, they ignore the work of the Kingdom of God.  As a result, they never lay hold of what will ultimately fulfill the desires of their souls.

Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple.
“If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down.  For it is written: “He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”
Matthew 4:5-6

Again, the enemy tried to use a promise to tempt the Lord.  He wanted Jesus to prove that God was protecting Him, by throwing Himself off the roof of the temple.  Satan uses this same strategy on us as well.  Of course, the results are usually different when we’re involved.

How do you respond when you’re tempted to test God?  Do you trust Him or not?  There’s no need to put God to the test.  He’s already proven Himself in Christ.  We need to follow the example of Jesus, who once again did not take the bait that the devil put before Him.

Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
Matthew 4:7

This usually turns out very differently when the devil runs this scenario before us.  We love to do foolish things, then “trust” God to get us out of the mess.  We spend our money on movie tickets, CD’s, video games, and new cars.  Then, when we can’t pay the bills, we “trust God” for the money.

How foolish!  Don’t you realize that the money you spent on your toys was the money God provided for your bills?  But we just sit back in bitterness and say, “I tested God and He failed me.”

As the people of God, we need to get our lifestyles back in line with the Word of God.

Questions: How do our faith and our actions work together?  How do they oppose each other sometimes?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2013 in Faith, Power of God

 

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