FEBRUARY 2017 HIGHER GROUND RALLY


Dearly Beloved,

HIGHER GROUND RALLY INVITATION

Greetings to you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This is to invite you to the Higher Ground Rally, an initiative through which we teach and challenge the Disciples of Christ to live practically and optimally and to bridge the gap between their existence and their calling.

Tickets at http://bit.ly/hgr0217

Through the Rally, we raise the bar for practical Christian living, by helping people to realise that there is more to life than the current sphere of experience, that they might break beyond the status quo by being all out, both in obedience and service, to the kingdom of God and for fulfilment of His will and glory in their lives and their generation.

We seek to accomplish these by exploring and practically applying models and principles from the scriptures to aid the contemporary person.

This edition is a must attend as it promises to lead you into relating with How God Initiates the Fulfilment of His Plan on Earth.

The event will hold on Sunday, 26th February, 2017, at The Emperor Place (Beside St. Raphael Mercy Specialist Hospital), Ijede Road, Ikorodu, Lagos. Time is 4:00 pm.

While admission is free for everyone, registration is required for everyone above age 16. You can register at http://bit.ly/hgr0217

OUT OF ZION 023 | HOW TO HAVE A WINNING TEAM

OUT OF ZION 023 | HOW TO HAVE A WINNING TEAM

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Bible Reading: Josh 1:16-18; Joel 2:1-11

Where order is recognised, corporate success and individual fulfilment will be inevitable.

Every group or team exists as a community for its members to remove them from being solitary to being in a functional social entity. The advantage of this ranges from group identity to interpersonal collaborations. The advantage of collaboration is enormous; it brings to the table the gains which transcends the sum total of the accomplishments of the individuals within the group.

The church of Christ is a community, a kingdom community. Its existence and business is with the objectives of God’s kingdom. Hence, the concern is not for individualities or vain self-seeking but for the togetherness which focuses on the common good.  It actually exists on earth through the local churches as earthly outstations of the heavenly kingdom. The togetherness of its members is for the purpose of winning with the kingdom assignment on earth. For this to be a few factors must come into consideration. Crucial among the factors is the understanding of the ethos of the kingdom.

Jesus pointed to this ethos in Matt 6:9ff by saying in the Lord’s prayers that “thine kingdom come, thy will be done on earth…” and later in the same context, “… thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory ….”. The Lord’s prayer actually reverts the mind of everyone that is a follower of Christ and that also prays like Him to the theocratic governance that God preferred under the Old Testament. In that system, leaders were selected by God; the culture of spiritual authority and the attending godly submission and followership was embraced.; team spirit was understood for the purpose of advancement and conquest; support for leadership was a necessity for the corporate good, and an atmosphere where rebellion and ungodly dissent thrives was discouraged. Look closely at Joshua 1:16ff and you will see these clearly there.

When Jesus came, he announced the subject of His concern as the kingdom of God (Matt 4:17,23) as it was even with John the Baptist (Mat 3:1-3). From these texts you can see that 1). The kingdom belongs to God, and that 2). We turn towards the kingdom by repentance (thinking differently; changing one’s mind for better; amending with abhorrence of one’s past sins heartily). Matt 4:23 in the message translation says the theme of Jesus’ teaching was the kingdom of God. Why the kingdom of God?

  1. The kingdom of God is a good government under which everything is being made right, starting with changed lives and changed effects.
  2. The kingdom of God is hence a new order, a better order, the intended order, in which things (spiritual, mental, emotional or physical) happen according to the will of God because God is the centre of the kingdom – Eph. 1:10.
  3. The kingdom of God is a spiritual reality that should operate in the now as the foretaste of or the preparation for the coming materialisation. – Luk 17:20-21; Jn 4:23

The kingdom has its attributes, some of which are reflected even in the earthly kingdom. The kingdom introduced by Christ and emphasised in His teachings is the realm which God rules over. It is an orderly system characterised by God’s righteousness; wherein authority is by delegation and not usurpation, wherein everyone is supposed to have a delegation which varies in levels and focus and wherein everyone serves God by the delegation he has received. What delegation or charge has God given you? Are you giving it your best as the day approaches when everyone shall render his account to God – Rom 14:7-12.

If the kingdom of God is an orderly system, its order must characterise our togetherness today. One of the order is the place of authority and leadership in the kingdom. Jesus gave the charge about servant leadership (where leaders exist to serve the people with the charge and grace they have received from God.) but also gave indications concerning the place of authority. Matt 8; Jn 21:15-21; Eph. 4:11-

Whether it is in the church, in the family or in other organisations, the place of order must be understood if the will of God will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Order is a principal key for a team to be distinguished (Joel 2:1ff). When order is present, rank is not broken and the people are not injured. God is not an author of confusion, neither does he abide where rebellion and ungodly dissent thrive. More so from the church, the example and the standard of order must go forth if the church shall fill its place on earth as the pillar and ground of truth. Where order is recognised, corporate success and individual fulfilment will be inevitable.

OUT OF ZION 022 | RESPONSIBILITY AND COOPERATION FOR KINGDOM FULFILMENT 2

OUT OF ZION 022 | RESPONSIBILITY AND COOPERATION FOR KINGDOM FULFILMENT 2

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Help is useful when responsibility is taken, for responsibility makes collaboration profitable.

If Jordan is the river you have not crossed before, crossing it then is a new experience; it is doing something new, something personally unprecedented; setting new target spiritually, materially, financially; stepping out of your current rut.

Nothing changes until you have decided to use change. You did not just get to the secondary school or to the university. You got to those places through a process of doing things differently and attempting new things. Even in salvation, while the provision has always been there, the change starts with you through your decision to believe in the Lord Jesus before heaven blesses you with its provision.

Help is useful when responsibility is taken, for responsibility makes collaboration profitable. Symbiosis is the way life goes; parasites are less desirable than hosts.

The blessing upon responsibility is collaboration. We can accomplish more of the corporate plan of God’s for us through cooperation with others. God sets everyone in communities for it is not good for Adam to be alone. He sets us in societies that we may live together in harmony and accomplish the His objectives for our corporate lives. He picks the solitary and sets them in families so as to break their bounds and release them into prosperity – Ps 68:6.

God’s plan for us is first for the group and then for the individuals. We all find our individualities and significance in the group. Together is the language of a group. The poor and rich come together, the lord is the maker of all – Pro 22:2. Through group experience we foster a balance that all may experience the good which God has in plan for our togetherness.

There is imbalance simply because of weaknesses of some. They are weak vis-a-vis the appropriation of God’s grace. Communal life sees to it that none falls short of God’s grace. The keyword in consideration here is ‘taking hold together with against’. Ecc 4:9-12 pointed to us the advantages of togetherness: Woe unto him that is alone; Two are better than one; A threefold cord is not easily broken. Geometric progression is enacted when forces are joined together under God – Lev 26:8; Deut 32: 30; Josh 23:10.

You are expected to join force with your significant others over their weaknesses with the strength, wisdom, abilities and encouragement that you have gained from God so as to prevail with them against their existent limitations. Practically speaking, everyone has an area of grace or testimony from the past with which he could help the other person.

The culture of God’s kingdom is cooperation, not a taking over of responsibility. If we usurp others’ responsibility, we would be promoting the culture of irresponsibility and laying foundation for implosion of fellowship and community. Kingdom help is via cooperation just as salvation happens through collaboration between heaven and earth. Even if our part of the salvation deal is very insignificant, we still had to believe to appropriate the provision. The one in need of help must willingly take up responsibility for help to be justified.

Let us all learn to be responsible and let those who are stronger and more advantaged be disposed to helping the weaker ones with the measure of grace which God has satisfied them with. By doing this we would all be able to enter into our corporate rest, the rest which remains for those who believe.