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/ / The Adventures on the Road to the Celestial City (2)

The Adventures on the Road to the Celestial City (2)

Loved one in Christ Jesus, I believe you are growing in the strength of the Lord. This is lesson two on my teachings, the adventures on the road to the celestial city. Another name for the celestial city is God’s kingdom (Heaven).

Following Jesus Christ produces some cost and pains because the world will never agree with all the principles recorded in the Word (Holy Bible). We (Christians) must go through persecutions, challenges, and oppositions because the unbelievers opposed, challenged and persecuted our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (See John 16:33).

If we are disciples of Jesus Christ, then whatever the unbelievers and religious people did to Jesus, will be done to us. We cannot escape criticism, hatred, opposition, accusation, and curses from the unbelievers and some religious people because they did it to Jesus Christ.

The book of Acts describes the ministry of the early apostles and how the Holy Spirit used them to establish the church. We can learn a lot from the book of Acts because it teaches us how the church suffered to establish God’s kingdom on earth.

The book of Acts reveals the works, miracles, trials, pains, missions, and works of the apostles. The book of Acts reveals the works and power of the Holy Spirit. If the book of Acts teaches us (Christians) the adventures of the church, then we should also expect the experiences of the apostles. Let's read from the Word.

when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.

And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.

Acts 5:40-41 KJV

In the book of Acts chapter five verses twelve, down to forty-one, Luke the physician wrote some significant encounters some apostles had as they were on their missionary work.

The religious people and unbelievers (both Jews and gentiles) opposed the apostles for doing the work of God. Luke records in the scriptures that the apostles (probably apostle Peter and John) were imprisoned for preaching the gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. God, in His power, delivered the apostles from the prison.

Do you know that there are missionaries imprisoned because of the gospel? These missionaries did not harm anyone, but the unbelievers pushed them into dark dungeons and killed some of them. Child of God, don’t be shocked when the unbelievers persecute you because they did to the apostles.

I believe you know what happened to James. The unbelievers stoned him to death because of preaching the truth (See Acts 6,7 and 8). Most of the unbelievers hate us (Christians) because of the gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 

The truth is, the hardened and possessed unbelievers will become our enemies because we are disciples of Jesus Christ. God can allow the unbelievers to work wickedness on believers because of the believer’s ignorance and leniency. 

God can allow the unbelievers to torment a Christian if the believer fails to call on God for help. When you go through persecutions, count it as great blessings because you have a glorious reward in heaven (See Matthew 5:11-12). Read the lesson one for more wisdom keys.

In the book of Acts chapter five verses forty-one, the apostles did something incredible. Let us read from the scriptures.  

And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.” (See Acts 5:41)

I believe you saw the apostle’s reaction. Instead of the Apostles complaining, they counted it worthy to suffer shame for Jesus Christ. What do we see in our churches, homes, and workplaces today? Most Christians become embarrassed because the unbelievers and some religious groups disgraced them.

Some Christians even go far by settling the case with the law court. I know some cases demand the law court. As Christians, we must first settle our case within the body because the unbelievers will never favour us. With persecution, we must embrace it as a trial and blessings.

The religious people falsely accused the apostles before the Romans. The Romans scourged the Apostles for preaching the gospel, but they never gave up their faith. The apostles became stronger in the Lord.

Most Christians give up easily when trials and persecution come their way. Some Christians commit suicide and renounce their faith because of the shame and mockery. These Christians don’t want to be embarrassed by the world and the religious people. They will walk with the world than to walk with Jesus Christ.

Christianity is not meat and drink(See Romans 14:17). There are times we pass through the pain. These pains will mold our character, personality, and spiritual life. Think of Apostle Paul, he suffered a lot as a Christian missionary. Paul said, “…we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God (See Acts 14:22).

A time came when Paul and Barnabas have to separate because Barnabas decided to take John (surnamed Mark) with Paul and Silas on the missionary work. Paul argued that John left them at Pamphylia, so they should reject John. After the argument, Barnabas took John (surnamed Mark), whiles Paul took Silas for the ministry work.

Sometimes, God can allow disagreement in the ministry because of His plans for the church. Paul and Barnabas did not fight, it was just a short misunderstanding. They agreed in peace and took different paths in the missionary work. My pain was for Silas because Paul faced a lot of persecution.

Sometimes following a specific ministry or minister of God can bring persecutions. The persecution of the minister and his ministry can be your persecution because you are following him and his ministry. I believe Silas suffered a lot of persecutions and beatings in the ministry because of following Paul. I could imagine Silas saying in his heart, why didn’t I walk with Barnabas!

Apostle Peter suffered in the ministry. The religious people falsely accused Peter and took him to the Romans to be crucified. The book of Acts talks a lot about the suffering of the apostles and church. If you are a Christian and you have not read the book of Acts, read it because it will help you know the adventures every Christian and ministry must pass through.

Sometimes you will hear some Christians say, God lied to me; He does not love me; God betrayed me, so I am giving up on God! They make all kinds of funny comments about trials of God.

Meanwhile, these Christians have not read a quarter of the New Testament. These Christians don’t even have a prayer life. I know some students who backslide because they had poor results in their exams when they were doing God’s work.

When you call these Christians for prayer meetings, most of them will say, I have exams, so I cannot attend church. They will tell you, I am busy with my academics, let’s make it another day. They will tell you that after the exams, they will come to church.

These Christians only know God when they face problems in their life. They see God as a rag. They only use God to solve their problems. When a trial comes their way, they backslide and follow the pleasures of the world.

Child of God, that is not how to follow Jesus Christ. There are times, God may allow us to pass through some trials because He wants to build our faith (Read the story of Abraham, Moses, and Joseph in the old testament). God allows persecutions because the unbelievers walk with the dilute principles. Know these truths.

  • We (Christians) walk by the principles of the Word.
  • We walk by faith. The unbelievers walk only by their five senses. 
  • Our way of life differs from the unbeliever's life. 
  • We walk with the mindset of faith, love, joy, peace, divine power and wisdom. 
  • We don’t allow circumstances to determine our future.
  • We are consumed with the anointing and wisdom of the Holy Spirit.
  • We are the light (leaders) and the salt (influencers) of this world.
  • We are strangers on this earth.

The unbelievers will never understand us until they become born again. Some will ignorantly and intentionally fight us. The unbelievers may think we are pretending, but it is the ways and the acts of the Holy Spirit (Meditate on Isaiah 55:6-9).

Let us (Christians) intercede for the unbelievers because most of them are ignorant of their actions (Meditate on 1 Corinthians 2:12-14, Luke 23:32-34, Ezekiel 3:16-21). The god of this world (Satan) has blinded the unbelievers. 

The unbelievers are flocks of lost sheep in the wilderness. They are goats without a shepherd. They are controlled by strange forces. They will oppose us because their level of wisdom cannot match our wisdom.

The unbelievers need deliverance of the spirit, soul, and body. Don’t limit yourself to their level and fight with them. When an insane person throws a stone at you, don’t fire back with a stone. Analyze that the person is insane. They need the mercies and grace of God (Meditate Matthew 9:36, John 21:15-17).

You carry God’s grace in your heart. You carry the fruits of the Holy Spirit (See Galatians 5:22-23). The unbelievers carry the fruit of the devil (jealousy, pride, lies, murder, insecurity, destruction, fear, and all forms of evil). The unbelievers cannot exhibit the love of God because it is absent in them.

Let the unbelievers know that their actions and reactions cannot move you. Don’t allow their actions to make you grieve the Holy Spirit. If you allow their insults, mockery, persecutions, accusations, jealousy, and insecurities to overcome you, you become a prisoner in the enemy's kingdom (Meditate on Ephesians 4:26-27).

Stand firm on your faith. Set your mind on things above. Think about Jesus Christ, the saints (Abraham, Moses, David, Peter, Elijah, Enoch, Isaiah, Daniel, and precious ones). Let your mind be on things above. When your mind is focused on the glories of heaven, the arrows of the demons and actions of the unbelievers can never stop you from entering the celestial city. Glory to God!

Read the lesson one...

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