ESOCS Devotional 14 August 2022
TEXT: ROMANS 15:15-31
MEMORY VERSE: “That I should be a minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.”Romans 15:16 KJV
0 And the apostles, when they had returned, told Him all that they had done. Then He took them and went aside privately into a deserted place belonging to the city called Bethsaida. 11 But when the multitudes knew it, they followed Him; and He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who had need of healing. 12 When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted lace ”
The joy in rendering services only comes when a service rendered has been accepted by who commissioned it. Whatever a man does in the name of the Lord can either be accepted or rejected by God. The word of God says that every man’s work will be tested by fire. The text points out clearly some of the services Apostle Paul rendered unto the Gentiles in the course of his ministry on earth. Notice that Paul acknowledged two major factors as the secret behind his success in ministry: the grace given to him and the works of the Holy Spirit through him (vs 15 and 16). He also took pleasure in giving glory to God who called him into ministry (vs 17and 18).
This is very uncommon among the preachers of the Gospel today. We have lots of people who give credits to themselves for the little things God does through them. They take pleasure to magnify themselves above the One who called them into ministry; and they forget that the God we serve is a consuming fire and will not share His glory with any man. Paul in our text discourages the act of building on a foundation laid by another man (v 20).
It is important to note that Paul was passionate about his services to God. He pursued it with great zeal and boldness, even at his own detriment, neglecting ambition and professionalism. From verse 24-29, we see a list of the places he conquered for the Lord. No wonder he already had assurance of his destination before departure. For he said “As for me, the hour has come for me to be sacrificed; the time is here for me to leave this life. I have done my best in the race, I have run the full distance, and I have kept the faith. And now there is waiting for me the victory prize of being put right with God. (2 Tim. 4:6-8a GN).
What a testimony! This calls for a sober reflection. What would be said of you in this race? How well have you preached the gospel of Christ? Do the multitude of sinners who die every day cause you tears and concern? Remember our Lord’s appeal before leaving the earth (Mk. 16:15-18; 13:31-37). When a man becomes more passionate about people’s accolades and opinion of him, he no longer gives credit to the enabling grace upon him; and such a man is soon to come to a place of destruction.
- Develop the habit of giving God all praise and glory, and giving none to yourself.
- Lord, my praise shall be continually of thee, and no one else.
FURTHER READING: Romans 12:1-8; 1 Timothy 1:14-22
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ESOCS Devotional 14 August 2022