Bible In One Year-Day 221 (Saturday, August 09, 2014)
Commentary: Ezekiel34-36. The duties of Pastors, apart from feeding God’s flock with spiritual food, are listed out in the following verse;
Ezekiel 34:4 “The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them.”
Unfortunately, the opposite became the order of the day. As it was then, so it is now.
Ezekiel 34:3 “Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock.”
Nowadays, when a pastor is ordained, there is a celebration with elaborate party. People struggle to become a pastor (shepherd) at any cost. They want to be like the Bishop in cassock, act or preach like him. If they come across another man of God with another style, they go for that style again; they don’t understand what it means to be a shepherd. Many have exposed themselves and, of course, their families to serious demonic attack through this ignorance. To be a shepherd is to carry a burden faithfully; only God can mark the faithfulness. God says “Woe to the shepherds …” who does contrary to what should be done. To be divinely called as a pastor goes with divine gifts; this gives the contentment in service. If you are called by God you wouldn’t want to be like others but really want to accomplish what God has called you to do;
Acts 20:24 “But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear to myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.”
Apostle Paul met the other apostles and disciples after his conversion, but he was not interested in imitating any one of them. He was contented with the ministry God had given him and strove to finish it; he was focused not minding persecutions. Lack of divine leading is the reason for contest and rivalry in ministries. To everyone genuinely called, a gift has been given and to everyone that is chosen a ministry is given. There are three basic ways of being called into ministry; people can call you, you can call yourself and God can call you. When people call you (such as being called by Bishop or another pastor) you could be given position. Calling yourself will always result in seeking for another power outside of Christ to compliment absence of grace; such as seeking for authority, position, recognition, respect, beggarly power etc. Unfortunately defeat and frustration is always the end. However, if God calls you, changes happen every time because it is God’s establishment, Ezek34:23. This change starts from the called. The lives of all the Apostles were changed first before they went into ministry. When you receive anointing for ministry, the first yoke to break is that in your life, otherwise, one can be impacting courses on the followers. When a man calls you, it is to help him to fulfill his own ministry (you are part of his ministry). This is not a bad thing as he could mentor you into realizing your ministry, especially if the Lord opens the mentor’s eyes to see that you have a calling. That is, ministry in ministry.
Luke 6:40 “The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.”
However, know that man’s approval is not God’s approval. You must be patient for God’s approval by His Spirit. Even Moses asked God who would succeed him despite the fact that Joshua was very supportive and hard working, not with eye-service. When you call yourself, it is to satisfy your ego and belly, Ezek34:3. This is when harassment becomes the manner of shepherding.
Matthew 20:26 “But it shall not be so among you: but whoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;“
You try to create fear in the flock; this could be through lies, false visions and revelations. Jesus made us to understand that flesh and blood could give revelations.
Matthew 16:17 “And Jesus answered and said to him, Blessed art thou, Simon-Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven.”
One could speak from his spirit and man could talk by the Spirit of God. Only one of them will the Spirit of God testify to. That which is spoken by man’s spirit, emotion, flesh or blood could be regarded as facts, subject to change. Facts are information sought for, from anywhere apart from God. But that spoken by the Spirit of God is called the “TRUTH”; it cannot change. The Holy Spirit is the only Person that could search and get information from God and whatever He gives is the truth. If God calls you, it is because of some destinies, i.e. some people that are under serious demonic oppression (Ezek34:25) that He wants to touch and give peace to them. And the first gift given by the Spirit of God to carry out the assignment is unconditional love, the nature of God.
Ezekiel 34:27 “And the tree of the field shall yield her fruit, and the earth shall yield her increase, and they shall be safe in their land, and shall know that I am the LORD, when I have broken the bands of their yoke, and delivered them out of the hand of those that served themselves of them (i.e. enslaves them).”
Jesus asked Peter if he loved Him, three times, before He gave him the assignment;
John 21:15-17 “So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith to him, Yes, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith to him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith to him, Yes, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith to him, Feed my sheep. He saith to him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said to him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith to him, Feed my sheep.”
Which vessel are you? Is it borrowed (i.e. called by man), dishonor (i.e. self called) or honor (i.e. called by the Almighty). God reveals Himself in that which He has hand in. Man reveals himself in that which he has called and your corrupted nature is revealed in your self-call.
We need to understand spiritual path to tread to realizing destiny and a fulfilled course.
Let us seek for the old path where we could find rest. Let us listen to the trumpet’s sound, wherewith we could escape the calamity to come. Our reading for today is Ezekiel37-39. Keep the fire of burning and alive.
Acts 20:28 “Take heed therefore to yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Spirit hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”
1 Peter 5:2 “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;”
Pastor Supo Abayode
Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries