The Youth and Young Adult Ministry discussed how to prevent identity theft at the January Milk 2 Meat. These are four preventative measures for protecting your identity from an enemy who seeks to steal, kill and destroy your life.
1. Put on your spiritual armour by giving God glory and getting in His word.
2. Hide the Word in your heart that “I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119). The Word is your treasure.
3. If you find yourself victimized — repent quickly and get back in fellowship with God. Ask the Lord to “create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me.”
4. Be ready to walk in liberty. When the enemy returns he should meet a new you. Be prepared to not fall the same way you fell before.
Prayer for 2014 is that we would know who we are and not have our identities stolen from us and that we would activate the word of God.
1 Peter 2
We have to come to a place where we yearn for and cannot rest without God. If we get to that place, we will be able to grow in God. When you desire something or someone, you spend time with it or them. We need to feel this way about God’s word. We should so attached to God that we feel we must hear from Him. If you really want to hear God’s voice, pick up your Bible. God is the Word.
We have to develop a hunger and thirst for God. If we do, we won’t have any problem yielding to the will of God.
In order to present yourself to God, you have to lay aside those things that hinder you from walking with God. (see 1 Peter 2:1) Deny yourself. The flesh will not be subject to the law of God, so we must mortify the deeds of the flesh. (see Romans 8:7; Romans 7:23; Romans 8:13) The Holy Ghost will give you power and authority over your flesh and over anything the devil has to offer. (see Acts 1:8)
Even after you receive the Holy Ghost, you must develop a deeper desire for God. If you become slack in reading, fasting, and praying, you become weak and vulnerable to the attacks of the enemy. Reading, fasting, and praying feed you spirit. Don’t grow so busy with the cares of this world that you starve your spirit, grow weak and faint.
You have to get a desire for God just as a baby gets a desire for milk. (see 1 Peter 2:2) The word is the voice, will, and strength of God. There’s nothing that can happen in your life that the Word of God doesn’t address. (see 2 Peter 1:3) At church should not be the only time you hear the word of God. You must read and study it for yourself. (see 2 Timothy 2:15; Isaiah 28: 10)
When you reject the word, you are rejecting Christ. If you truly love God, you will stick with Him, get closer to Him, and most importantly, keep His commandments.
We have to let the spirit of God rule in our lives. We must get to a place where we stop making excuses for our shortcomings so we can move forward in God. It’s not possible to backslide without overriding the Holy Ghost first. Be led by the Spirit. (see Jude 1:24) There’s no way to go wrong if you adhere to the word of God. (see Psalms 119:11)
If you get off track with God, accept all of the responsibility for it. Backsliding is no one else’s fault. Beware of the wiles of the devil, for he is your adversary. Be sober and vigilant so you can recognize who your enemy is. Do not fight your brother and sister in Christ but instead go against the devil who is trying to use them. You can defeat the spirit that causes division if you let the Holy Ghost rule.
We must also get to a place where we can go to the throne of God for ourselves. We can’t always depend on others to pray for us, especially if we don’t pray ourselves. Jesus died so we can have personal access to God. Jesus is our high priest and we can go to Him at anytime. Nobody can take care of your needs like Jesus can!
Since our bodies are temples of the Holy Ghost, we have to allow Him to dwell and rule. He sets the standards. He is the high priest over your “house,” which is your body. This means we can’t do anything we want to do with God’s house. We have to seek God to make sure we are following His will. (see Hebrews 10:22)
If we serve God in the beauty of holiness, He will give us the desires of our hearts. If our hearts are pure, the spirit can lead and guide us into all truths. We can’t go before God and doubt and expect God to move. (see Hebrews 10:23) Hold to the profession of your faith without wavering. Holiness is always right! God is calling for holiness. Holiness is not a religion; it is a lifestyle.
You can’t allow anyone to sway you from holiness because you then are being swayed away from God’s promises. Don’t lose out on what God has for you! Be holy!
Notes: Meditation means to engage in contemplation or reflection. To meditate is to focus one’s thoughts on what God has done. Meditating allows you to recognize that you are only where you are because of His goodness. We must find time to ponder on God’s grace and mercy and recognize His blessings. Keep your heart and mind on The Lord throughout the day (Psalms 16:8). Think on things that will increase your strength in God.
Ingest the word of God. We must see the need for the word of God. The word was joy and delight to Jeremiah. It is important for us to develop a love for the word (Jeremiah 15:16).
You won’t focus on your problems, present and past, as much if you meditate on the word. Those seeking to live under God’s blessings should meditate on God’s word. How long? “Day and night” (Psalms 119:148).
The word of God will shape your thinking and attitude. When you meditate on the word, you will begin to examine yourself and be honest with yourself. The church is supposed to serve as examples to the world. We have to check to see if the Spirit is leading our lives.
When you meditate, seek God for what He wants you to get out of the word. The word will open up your eyes.
Psalm 119:33-35 says Delight in the path of The Lord. Joy comes to our hearts as we read and obey the word. When we read with an earnest desire to understand, the Holy Ghost will help us discern the truth in His word. It will lift and minister to your spirit. If we delight in His word, we develop a deeper love for His commandments (Psalms 119:47-48).
When you are quickened by the word, you will start doing what your supposed to do in Christ. Meditation bring growth in The Lord. You have to take your mind off of other things and focus on The Lord. God will strengthen, encourage you and walk with you through your situations. God will bless you when you put your mind on The Lord! It’s time to meditate!
Scripture: 1 John 2:15 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them.
For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.
Notes: Paul knew that the word would be so watered down through generation to generation and warned that false teachers would be cursed. What the word says is the only thing that counts. One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism. We want to see what the word says and won’t accept anything less. So when it comes to the world we want to be separate. God warned us in His word what we would come up against. We should be ready to stand and give a reason for the hope that lies within us. (more…)
Notes: God established us in Him so we can set trends. We are supposed to show the world how to: deal with trouble and pain, solve problems and show others what real happiness and joy is. That’s why we are here. He created us so the world can see these things in us. That’s why we are a chosen generation and a holy people. When He brought us out of darkness into His marvelous light we became His ambassadors. Don’t ever take your salvation lightly. He has given you what you need to show the world Christ.
The pattern has already been set for who we are. In the first chapter of Corinthians, Paul explained to the church who they are. We are God’s righteousness and we are called to be holy and can be confident in whose and whom we are. You have to know who you are. He has given you everything you need to be holy and it comes with having the Holy Ghost. Its important for us to be sure we have the Spirit of God and that the Spirit is active in our lives.
Having the Holy Ghost
The Spirit of God helps you to be aware and evaluate yourself. God knows who we are and has given us help to counteract the flesh. When the flesh rises up the Spirit helps you to modify it. God knew we would miss the mark, but don’t stay there. Get up quickly. If you sin we have an advocate. You can tell when the test comes you will definitely know. However, it is His desire that we all come to repentance. That is why we have to allow the word to take root in us. That word should bear fruit, some 100, some 60, some 30.
Watch the second installment of Bishop Pendleton’s “Let’s get back to basics” message. (In case you missed it, here’s Part I).
(Courtesy of Min. Gravette; footage by Bro. Khalil Williams)
Did the sermon take you back to basics? Describe what you got from the message in the comments. (To hear the sermon in its entirety fill out a CD order form at graceapostolicchurch.net, and mail it to 4417 Dix Street, NE, Washington, D.C., 20019.)