OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL.
DATE: SUNDAY 26TH FEBRUARY 2017
“But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites?” Matthew 22:18
Read: Luke 11:37-44
11:37 And as He spake, a certain Pharisee besought him to dine with him: and he went in, and sat down to meat.
11:38 And when the Pharisee saw it, He marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner.
11:39 And The Lord said unto him, Now do ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and the platter; but your inward part is full of ravening and wickedness.
11:40 Ye fools, did not He that made that which is without make that which is within also?
11:41 But rather give alms of such things as ye have; and, behold, all things are clean unto you.
11:42 But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
11:43 Woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye love the uppermost seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets.
11:44 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are as graves which appear not, and the men that walk over them are not aware of them.
A.One of the characteristics which the Holy Spirit warns us will be rife in the last days is hypocrisy.
1. 1 Timothy 4:2 “speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron,
2. No wonder the Lord Jesus Christ made it very clear that many who expect to be granted access through the pearly gates will be turned back on the last day.
3. Luke 13:24-27 “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able. When once the Master of the house has risen up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open for us,’ and He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know you, where you are from,’ then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets.’ But He will say, ‘I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.’”
4. Do you know that many bishops, pastors, general overseers, apostles, etc who are professing Christ today will not make it on the day of judgement?
5. May that not be your lot in Jesus’ Name. Amen!
6. To prevent this from happening to you, you need to periodically examine yourself to see if you are still in the faith, as received from the Lord.
7. 2 Corinthians 13:5 says, “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?”
B. Ask yourself if your name is still written in The Book of Life.
1. Does The Spirit of God still bear witness with your spirit that you are a bona fide Child of God?
2. Is your conscience free from guilt and dead works?
3. Can the devil and his agents testify that truly, you are no longer in their camp?
4. Don’t pretend to be A Child of God when you know you are on your way to perdition.
C. The greatest challenges Jesus had with the Pharisees was the issue of their mindset.
1. They appeared to have good intentions, but it was all a lie.
2. Jesus knew the state of their hearts. The human heart is like a computer. Whatever you feed it with will determine what comes out of it. The heart of a man is what shapes his destiny.
3. The reason why some people come to church and are still not blessed is the state of their heart. Their hypocritical hearts are hardened, and so they cannot receive anything from God.
4. If the Pharisees had allowed the message of Jesus Christ to penetrate their hearts, their perception would have been different.
5. If you allow God to work on your heart, your breakthrough will be immeasurable. Our heart is a reflection of who we are.
6. Every time Jesus performed a miracle, instead of being happy that someone in need had received help from God, the Scribes and Pharisees would rather question by what authority He did it (John 9:13-27, Luke 20:1-2).
7. That is what a hypocritical heart looks like. I wish we all knew that God is watching not just our actions but also our motives.
8. He hears and watches everything we do behind closed doors. There is nothing hidden from Him that will not be exposed on the last day.
9. Hypocrites know how to find faults in the lives of others, but their own lives are like sepulchres which appear beautiful on the outside but are full of dead men’s bones.
10. Matthew 23:27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.”
11. God wants us to reflect a life of righteousness and transparency, a life that radiates The Glory of God, a life of virtue and of good works.
Father, deliver me from all forms of self-deception in The Name of Jesus. Amen!
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR:
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN: ON THE HILL AWAY
1. On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
the emblem of suffering and shame;
and I love that old cross where the dearest and best
for a world of lost sinners was slain.
So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
and exchange it some day for a crown.
2. O that old rugged cross, so despised by the world,
has a wondrous attraction for me;
for the dear Lamb of God left his glory above
to bear it to dark Calvary. Refrain
3. In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine,
a wondrous beauty I see,
for ’twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died,
to pardon and sanctify me. Refrain
4. To the old rugged cross I will ever be true;
its shame and reproach gladly bear;
then he’ll call me some day to my home far away,
where his glory forever I’ll share. Refrain
EMMANUEL=GOD WITH US!