Dr. Luke, in his Gospel, narrated how Simeon, aged and a devout child of God, was made to go to the temple one day by God. As he lifted one baby, he heard, “This is He”. That was the Saviour he had been told that he must see before his death. That was Immanuel, prophesied by Isaiah that a virgin would bear – Isaiah 7:14. Simeon prophesied about the child and how He would die. He said, “Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy Word, for my eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people, a Light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people, Israel” – Luke 2: 29-32. Mary, the mum wondered.
Mary remembered her encounter with the angel of God, who called her by name and told her not to be afraid as she had found favour with God. The angel told her that she would conceive and bear a son, and would call him, Jesus. Remembering her Biology, she asked him how it would be possible since she was a virgin. The angel told her that her conception would be by the Holy Ghost and gave her a testimony of Elisabeth, her cousin, who was said to be barren, but had been pregnant since six months. “With God, nothing is impossible,” he assured her. Convicted, she then surrendered her doubts and all to God – Luke 1:30-38.
One day, Mary, pregnant, visited Elisabeth her cousin, and no sooner did Elisabeth hear her salutation than the baby in her womb leapt up joyfully. Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost and without being told, she knew that Mary was pregnant, hence she called her the ‘Mother of her Lord’ – Luke 1:39- 43. Mary wondered. Joseph, who had been engaged in marriage with her, noticed that she was pregnant when they had never slept together. Chastity had always been the Christian standard. He wanted, therefore to divorce her secretly but God intervened. In his dream, the angel of God told him to take her as the pregnancy was by the Holy Ghost and that he would call the son she would bear, Jesus, for He would save His people from their sins – Matt.1:19-21.
The baby was born and named Jesus. Soon after, wise men came from the East and worshipped Him and gave Him gifts – Matt. 2:1-11. Today, wise men still look for Jesus, worship Him and give Him gifts. You are wise, that is why you are here this morning. At the age of 12, Jesus identified with God as His Father. The family had gone to Jerusalem for the annual Passover, and after the celebration, as they were going home, they thought that Jesus was with them when He was not. That was after three days’ journey. Thank God that they went back to look for Him. May we go back to look for Him, any time we discover that we have left Him somewhere because of sin. They found Him in His Father’s House, God’s Temple, discussing the scriptures with the scribes. “Thy father and I have been looking for You,” Mary told Him. He pointed her to God immediately as His Father, Whose business He was doing. It was a reminder to Mary that Joseph was only His foster father – Luke 2:48&49.
At the age of 30, He was ready to start His ministry. God introduced Him to the world, “This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased” – Matt. 3:17. God introduced Him also, after His transfiguration, to the leaders of His ministry – “This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased, hear ye Him” – Matt. 17:5. We should also be listening to Him.
Jesus, as the Gift of God, discharged and acquitted a lady condemned to death for adultery because He would soon die for her and for us. Incidentally, her accusers were not free from the mud. Applying wisdom, which Proverbs 4:7 says is the principal thing, though not justifying her deed, He challenged the accusers. “If any of you have not committed any sin,” He asked them, “let him cast the first stone”. They all ran away. “Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more,” He told the woman – John 8:2-11. That was what He did to me on April 16, 1972, I gave my life to Him. It is atrocious for a person He has forgiven to go back to sin.
Jesus changed bad news to good news. Jairus, a Jewish leader, pleaded with Him to come to his house and heal his sick daughter. He accepted. A centurion, however, had told Him, sometime ago, not to come to his house but to speak the healing Word only, and his sick servant would be healed. My God! No blood test, no x-ray, nothing! Faith! He did, and the servant was healed – Matt.8:8. On their way to Jairus’ house, a lady with an issue of blood for 12 years was impatient to follow due process. She believed that if she touched Jesus, she would be healed. She did and was healed. High faith! As they were jubilating, some people brought bad news to Jairus that his daughter was dead – Mark 5:35. Jesus told him to ignore them, and he did. Amazing faith! At his house, Jesus told the mourners to stop, as the maid was not dead but sleeping. They mocked Him. He commanded the maid to rise up and she did! Mark 5:22-42. I decree that any bad news for you in 2023 and beyond, be turned to good news and any person mocking you will join in celebrating your victory.
Jesus changed the painful identity of Bartimaeus, a blind man. Bartimaeus started shouting on Jesus for mercy, when he heard that He was around. Nobody could stop him, until Jesus called him. May He call you also. Hearing that, he threw away his garment, his beggar’s identity, reasoning that he would not beg again, for nobody had remained the same after meeting Jesus. Jesus commended his faith and healed him. He joined His disciples immediately. I prophesy that anything that identifies you with sin, sickness, or shame, be destroyed right now in Jesus name. I decree that you change camp right now from being a borrower to a lender, a tenant to a landlord, a staff of a company to an employer of labour.
Jesus bypassed protocol to favour a man, sick for 38 years. The community was blessed with a pool that had a healing virtue. The snag was that it was the first person to enter there when the God’s angel stirred it that was healed. The problem was that nobody knew when he would stir it. Competition by the sick people was rife, causing the man to be there for 38. Jesus, the Friend of the friendless, came and healed him. I decree that Heaven, Governments, companies, individuals, et cetera, will bypass protocols to favour you. Happy New Year!
For further comment, Please contact: Osondu Anyalechi: 0909 041 9057; [email protected]