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Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 26 Jun 2016, 11:49 pm

DearlyBeloved, DOES IT GLORIFY GOD?

“Therefore,whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1Corinthians 10:31 NKJV).

Oneof the things I observed in the ongoing UEFA EURO 2016 championship is the waymost of the players modify their skins with various types of tattoo. It seemsthey are competing who will outdo the other with the trend. The act of thisskin piercing has become a common thing in the western world and it is becomingmore acceptable among young adults and even middle-aged people, womeninclusive. However, does this make the act right? What is beautiful or good indisfiguring the image of God that He has made human beings to be? Will the factthat many people have accepted it and it has become something in vogue makes itright? 

Therehave been many arguments for and against tattoo, which is a form of bodymodification made by inserting permanent (and at times, temporary) ink into theskin to change the colour of the skin. While some people, even Christian leaders,see nothing wrong with this act, many Christians frown at it. I would not wantto join the arguments for or against tattoo, because I know that people areready to justify or condemn it with some Bible references to support theirpositions. 

However,why will I modify my skin with all sorts of images and inscriptions? Will suchmodification or body piercing glorify God in me? What impact will it make onother people? Will I blindly join others to do it, and or some othercontroversial things, because they have become so popular? Why will I become astumbling block to other people because of my actions?

Themost important thing in anything that we are doing or supporting is to askwhether such thing would glorify God. No matter how good or popular anythingmay be, if it does not glorify God, then, we should have a rethink on it.

“Letyour light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorifyyour Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16 NKJV). 

“Andwhatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men” (Colossians3:23 NKJV).

Doesit glorify God?

InHis service,

BayoAfolaranmi (Pastor).
PrayerPoint: Pray that you will not do anything that will not glorify God in yourlife.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 19 Jun 2016, 8:07 pm

Dearly Beloved,

In honor of our fathers as we celebrate thisyear's Fathers' Day, let me resend this message that I first sent out in 2005:

"MY DADDY WILL NOT LEAVE ME!"

"The LORD himself goes before you andwill be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; donot be discouraged" (Deuteronomy 31:8 NIV).

"...because God has said, `Never will Ileave you; never will I forsake you'" (Hebrews 13:5 NIV).

My two-year-old daughter said a statement thatwas a challenge to me the other day. We were having our breakfast that Sundaymorning in preparation for the worship service. When my wife discovered thatour daughter was slow in eating her food, she said jokingly that we will leaveher at home if she does not eat fast. She just said confidently andemphatically, "My daddy will not leave me!"

We laughed over the matter, but her confidencein me was a thought-provoking issue for me throughout the day. Do I have such aconfidence in my heavenly Father? Can I say with assurance that He will notleave me even when it seems that everyone and everything is against me?

The psalmist in Psalm 77 faced difficultsituation that made him think that God had forsaken him. He asked six questionsto ascertain the presence of God with him (verses 7-9). He concluded in histhought, "To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the MostHigh. I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your miraclesof long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mightydeeds. Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God? You are theGod who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples"(Psalm 77:10-14 NIV). The psalmist knew that the Lord is there for him all thetime and that he just has to remember the goodness of God and trust in Him. Nowonder he said somewhere else, "For the LORD will not reject his people;he will never forsake his inheritance" (Psalm 94:14 NIV).

The Lord will not leave you even when allothers forsake you and you are passing through the most turbulent time. Yes Iwill say confidently, "My heavenly Daddy will not leave me!"

In His service,

Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 12 Jun 2016, 6:38 pm

Dearly Beloved,
CHRIST THE KING ETERNAL

"But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you aresmall among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will beruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times"(Micah 5:2, NIV).

 
"...our Lord Jesus Christ ... God, the blessedand only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords..." (1 Timothy6:14-15, NIV).

 
The word "Christ" is a transliteration fromthe Greek word "Christos" that simply means the anointed one. ItsAramaic form is "meshicha" from where the English word"Messiah" came. It designates Jesus as the fulfiller of the Messianichopes of the Old Testament and of the Jewish people. A king is a person thatrules a town, province, country, etc. He has the power to rule or govern, andhas authority over the people in such town, province, country, etc. The word"eternal" denotes something/somebody that has no beginning and noend.

 
Jesus Christ was the King eternal in the past becauseof many reasons. The writers of the Old Testament prophesied about Him: (1) asthe righteous King from David "who will reign wisely and do what is justand right in the land" (Jeremiah 23:5, NIV. See also 33:15; Isaiah11:1-5); (2) as One whose "government and peace there will be no end [who]will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom" (Isaiah 9:7, NIV); (3)as a "ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancienttimes" (Micah 5:2, NIV). There are many prophecies about His kingship inPsalms 2:6-11; 72; 110; Isaiah 2:1-4; 32:1; 33:17; Daniel 2:44. All theseprophecies especially the one in Micah 5:2 prove that He had been in existencebefore His birth.

 
Jesus Christ was the King eternal in His lifes time. These are some of the evidences. One, the wisemen from the East saw His star as that of a king (Matthew 2). Two, His miracles,especially the ones over nature, showed Him as the King over the universe.Three, in fulfillment of another Old Testament prophecy, He rode into Jerusalemduring His Triumphal Entry (see Matthew 21:1-11; Zechariah 9:9). Four, thechief priests rightly accused Him of calling Himself a king during His trialbefore Pilate (Luke 23:2; John 19:12). Five, during that trial, He talk aboutHis kingdom, and even affirmed the probing of Pilate that He was a king (John18:36-37).

 
Presently, Jesus Christ is the King eternal who isseated "...in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, powerand dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present agebut also in the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet and appointedhim to be head over everything..." (Ephesians 1:20-22, NIV. See also Acts5:31; Hebrews 1:3; 2:9).

 
In the future, Jesus Christ will continue to be theKing eternal. He will judge the whole universe with righteousness (Revelation19:11-16). All nations will worship Him (Revelation 15:3-4). He will reignforever and ever! (Revelation 11:15).

 
The implication of the eternal kingship of JesusChrist is that every man must ascribe unto Him honor due unto Him by acceptingHim as the Savior and Lord that will continue to rule over him/her from nowuntil eternity. Only those who allow Him to reign over them will reign with Himin His eternal kingdom at the end of ages (Daniel 7:18, 27; Romans 8:18; 2Timothy 2:12; Revelation 20:4). Have you accepted Him as the King over yourlife? You have no option. He will judge you one day! (see Acts 17:30-31; Romans2:16; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 20:11-15). Jesus Christis the King eternal!

 
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will allow Jesus Christthe eternal King to reign in your life so that you will be able to reign withHim in eternity.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 05 Jun 2016, 9:35 pm

Dearly Beloved,

WHAT ARE YOU BUILDING?

If then you were raised with Christ, seekthose things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand ofGod. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth†(Colossians3:1-2 NKJV).

One of those things that is veryconspicuous when you get to any ancient city (even, at times, villages) in thewestern world are the magnificent beautifully built churches that can be foundon almost every street. However, most of these buildings are either sold out,about to be sold, become unused or nearly empty. In my discussion with oneelderly pastor, he lamented that one of the reasons of the decline in churchmembership in this part of the world is that the past generation of Christianshere were busy building physical structures while they neglected buildingpeople spiritually. He cited how billions of pound sterling were used to buildmany churches then while no or little was spent to spiritually build the livesof people that worshipped in those elegant buildings. Today, most of thesebuildings have been sold out or become useless. This scenario reminds me of aYoruba proverb: “Omo ti  a ko ko ni yogbe ile ti a ko ta†(meaning: the “unbuilt†or untrained child will eventualsell the house that one built). 

Unfortunately, this scenario is repeatingitself presently in many developing countries. Church leaders are busy buildingphysical structures and amassing material possessions to the detriment of thespiritual growth of their church members. They are investing in physicalstructures and material possessions, and they care less about investing in thespiritual lives of church members. Discipleship and real nurturing of thefollowers are no longer paramount in many churches inasmuch as the church isgrowing numerically and the church and its leaders can amass more materialthings.

Interestingly, many Christians are doingsimilar things to themselves. They care more about their physical lives andcare less about their spiritual lives. Even, the reason why many people areworshipping God or being committed in church activities is because of what theycan get physically, materially or financially from God. They continue to buildtheir physical lives and leave their spiritual lives uncared for. No wonder,some would stop to worship God or become inactive in church when they do nothave what they want from God. Additionally, there are many religious peopletoday, but very few spiritual and well-grounded discipled people.

What are you building, your physical lifeor your spiritual life? What is your paramount priority in worshipping God? Whyare you so active in church? Do you really care about the building of yourspiritual life? As church leader, do you care about building your followersspiritually or your care is about how to build physical structures and amass asmany material possessions as you can through your followers? 

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures onearth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; butlay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroysand where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, thereyour heart will be also (Matthew 6:19-21 NKJV). What are you building? 

In His service,

Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Prayer Point: Pray that you will care moreabout building yourself up spiritually.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 29 May 2016, 2:19 pm

Dearly Beloved,

YOUR DIVINE PURPOSE WILL BE FULFILLED

“But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant itfor good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many peoplealive” (Genesis 50:20 NKJV).
Joseph was a favoured child among the children of Jacob. God had special plansfor his life. His brothers had known these, and they were not happy with it.They looked for means to thwart these divine plans in his life. They eventuallyhad the opportunity, and they first threw Joseph into a pit before they soldhim into slavery in Egypt. Joseph was wrongly accused of sexual assault on hismaster's wife, and he was thrown into prison. In spite of his goodwill to otherprisoners, he was forgotten and abandoned in the prison for years. However, allthese seemingly bad players and situations in Joseph's life played vital rolesthough negatively to make Joseph fulfil his destiny.

At times, God allows people to play seemingly bad roles in aperson's life to make that person fulfil his divine destiny. Due to thenegative actions of these people, the person may experience many unpleasantsituations. However, no matter what, the purpose and plan of God for the personwill finally come to pass.

Are you experiencing unpleasant situation at the moment?Does it seem as if people are doing bad things against you? Do not bediscouraged. God is using those seemingly bad people and bad situations to makeyou fulfil your divine purpose in life. Apostle Paul declared: “And we knowthat all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who arethe called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28 NKJV). Do not hate thoseseemingly bad people or wish them ill luck. As Joseph outlived his bad andunpleasant situations, you also will outlive your bad and unpleasantsituations. As the seemingly bad people in the life of Joseph lived to witnessthe fulfillment of his divine purpose, those seemingly bad people in your willlive long to witness your greatness in life. In fact, the Lord will prepare atable before you in the presence of your enemies, and anoint your head withoil, and your cup will run over (see Psalm 23:5). Come what may, your divinepurpose will be fulfilled in Jesus’ name. Amen.

In His service,

Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

 
Prayer Point: Pray for the grace to be able to stand inspite of bad situations in your life till the divine purpose for you isfulfilled.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Mon 23 May 2016, 2:54 pm

ARE YOU STILL IN THE FAITH?
“And [Delilah] said, ‘The Philistines are upon you, Samson!’ So [Samson] awoke from his sleep, and said, ‘I will go out as before, at other times, and shake myself free!’ But he did not know that the Lord had departed from him. Then the Philistines took him and put out his eyes..." (Judges 16:20-21a NKJV).
As my wife switched off the electric fan in our bedroom, I noticed as the fan continued to rotate in a slower speed till it came to standstill after about two minutes. The spiritual life of many Christians is like that electric fan that is just being switched off or disconnected from its power source. Many Christians that used to be fervent in the Spirit and in the things of God like prayer, reading and meditating on the words of God, worshipping God, fellowshipping with other believers, evangelizing the world about Jesus Christ, and the likes find themselves dwindling in such spiritual things. They may think that they are still in the Lord and fervent in the things of God, but reserve is the case. The main causes of this degeneration mostly are sin and carelessness. No wonder, Apostle Paul admonished, “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall [into sin]” (1 Corinthians 10:12 NKJV).
The life of Samson is a good example here. Samson was a mighty man who did great exploits for the Lord by delivering the Israelites from the Philistines (see Judges 14-16). There is even a record that “…he tore the lion apart as one would have torn apart a young goat..." (Judges 14:6 NKJV). However, he dabbled into sin and carelessness by unequally associating himself with a Philistine woman - Delilah, and he paid dearly for it. He thought he was still in the Lord and as powerful as before. Nonetheless, the enemies came and conquered him (see Judges 16). 
As Apostle Paul again admonished, “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves” (2 Corinthians 13:5 NKJV), are you still in the faith? Are you as fervent in the Lord as when you first believed? Is the Lord still with you, or rather, are you still with the Lord? Take heed, lest you become a disconnected fan!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Prayer Point: Pray that you will always examine yourself to make sure you are still in the faith.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 15 May 2016, 9:39 pm

Dearly Beloved,
NO OR LITTLE TIME FOR JESUS? “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it andare safe” (Proverbs 18:10 NKJV). “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the namewhich is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, ofthose in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and thatevery tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God theFather” (Philippians 2:9-11 NKJV).There is a trend now especially in Nigeria that calls for attention:shortening or abbreviating words when chatting online or sending text messages.This may be a way of saving time and space. However, it is affecting the writtenEnglish of many people especially the younger generation. What is most dishearteningto me is shortening or abbreviating the precious name of JESUS CHRIST. Iconfronted an online friend when he sent a prayer wish to me and ended it with“IJN” supposedly meaning “in Jesus’ name”. His argument was that it saves himspace and time to do so. He had the time and space to type all other words, butno or little time for the name of JESUS. There are other abbreviations andshort forms for words that contain either “Jesus” or “Christ” like “xtian” for“Christian”, “xmas” for “Christmas”, “IJMN” for “in Jesus’ mighty name”. It interesting to note that these people that abbreviate or shortenthe name of JESUS are unknowingly following the world that is doing everythingto hide or even do away with the precious name of Jesus and everything that hasto do with Him. No wonder, the world has changed “BC” that means “BeforeChrist” to “BCE” that means “Before Common Era” and “AD” that means in Latin“Anno Domini” (English: in the year of our Lord) to “CE” that means “Common (orCurrent) Era”.  Having no or little time for writing the name of JESUS is areflection of the lives of many people. There is time for other mundane things,but there is no or little time for the things of God like prayer, reading andmeditating on the words of God, worshipping God, fellowshipping with otherbelievers, evangelizing the world about Jesus Christ, and the likes. Suchpeople are of the opinion that God understands. God does understand, but it isa subtle way in which Satan is drifting unsuspecting Christians away from God.No matter the time and space, never underestimate the importance ofwriting in full the precious name of JESUS CHRIST. Put the devil and hiscohorts to shame by being proud of the name of JESUS and by writing it in fullno matter what it will cost you. Do not join the world to hide or eliminate theprecious name of JESUS. “... at the name of JESUS every knee should bow…!”In His service,Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).  Prayer Point: Pray that you will not unintentionally join the worldto hide the precious name of JESUS. _________________________
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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"I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. FOR TO ME, TO LIVE IS CHRIST AND TO DIE IS GAIN" (Philippians 1:20-21, NIV).
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 08 May 2016, 11:56 pm

Dearly Beloved,
WOMEN ARE PILLARS OF SUPPORT!
“Warriors became fat and sloppy, no fight left in them. Then you, Deborah, rose up; you got up, a mother in Israel” (Judges 5:7 MSG).
“Say hello to Priscilla and Aquila, who have worked hand in hand with me in serving Jesus” (Romans 16:3 MSG).
Priscilla (also known as Prisca) was a Christian woman who with her husband, Aquila, worked together with Paul at Corinth. According to history, Priscilla and Aquila came to Corinth after the Roman Emperor Claudius expelled all the Jews from Rome (see Acts 18:2). They were Paul's co-workers who Paul left at Ephesus where they ministered effectively, especially to Apollos (see Acts 18:18-26). Apart from the fact that Priscilla was prominent in the Early Church, she is named before her husband in the majority of biblical passages (see Romans 16:3; 1 Corinthians 16:19; 2 Timothy 4:19). Undoubtedly, this indicates her strength of character and/or her exceptional usefulness in Christian work (see Acts 18:26). She was indeed a pillar of support to her husband and other early Christians.
Priscilla was not the only one that was a pillar of support to other menfolk in the Holy Bible. Deborah was another spectacular woman. In fact, she was a judge and a warrior who delivered the people of Israel from the oppression of the Canaanites and led the people. She was indeed “a mother in Israel” (see Judges 4-5). Other exemplary women in the Bible were Miriam (the sister of Moses and Aaron) who was referred to as a leader of the people of Israel along with Moses and Aaron in Micah 6:4; Abigail who saved the life of her husband (see 1 Samuel 25); Huldah whose counsel was sought by Hilkiah the then high priest and Josiah the king (2 Kings 22:14; 2 Chronicles 34:22); Mary who was highly favoured to be the mother of Jesus (Luke 1:26-28) and played prominent roles in His life and ministry; Mary Magdalene, Joanna the wife of Cuza, Susanna, Mary the mother of James, Mary and Martha and other women that served Jesus during His earthly ministry (see Luke 8:2-3; 10:38-42; 24:10); Lois and Eunice who mentored Timothy (see Acts 16:1-2; 2 Timothy 1:5); Phoebe, a deaconess of the church in Cenchrea and other women like Mary of Rome, Tryphena, Tryphosa, Persis, mother of Rufus, and many others that were pillars of support in the Early Church (see Rom 16:1, 6, 12, 13). Sadly, there were also bad examples of women that were pillars of support like Jezebel, Ahab's wife, famous for extending the cult of her own Phoenician gods to the land of Israel, and influenced her husband to take evil decisions (see 1 Kings 18:4,13,19; 19:1; 21:25; 2 Kings 9:22), and the bloodthirsty Athaliah (interestingly Jezebel’s daughter) who reigned both as Jehoram's consort and as queen regnant (2 Kings 8:18; 11:1-16).
Women are indeed pillars of support wherever they find themselves. Although, the support may be positive or negative. As a woman, are you a good pillar of support to your husband, siblings, co-workers and other people around you? In what way can you really support these people?
Happy Mother’s Day!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Points:
1. Pray that as a woman, you will be a good pillar of support to people around you.
2. Pray for women that have been positive pillars of support in your life that God will continue to use them to support you in His own way.
NB
This message is dedicated to my wife, Florence Opeyemi Afolaranmi, who has been my reputable pillar of support for almost two decades.


_________________________
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 03 Apr 2016, 10:59 pm

Dearly Beloved,
YOU WILL LIVE AGAIN!
"As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease" (Genesis 8:22 NIV).
One of my observations since the time I came to this western world has to do with the changes in the seasons of the year. Obviously, this will be so as somebody who was coming from a hot-climate area of Africa to a very cold-climate area of Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom. I came to this part of the world during the autumn season. As the season changed to winter, I watched as many plants and trees started becoming “dead” by shedding all their leaves. Throughout winter, a first timer in this part of the world would think that these plants and trees are lifeless and dry like the leafless trees in tropical part of the world. But, someone who is familiar with the seasons here knows that the leafless and seeming dry plants and trees are very lively. As the spring season started, I noticed that these seeming lifeless plants and trees have started budding flesh leafs. It seems new life is coming into them.
I am inspired especially by this new life that is coming to the seeming lifeless plants and trees. If God can be fulfilling His promise in Genesis 8:22 in the lives of ordinary plants and trees, and they are coming back to life again, He will fulfil His promises in my life. No matter how lifeless I may seemingly be, I will blossom again. If an ordinary tree has hope when it is cut down that it will sprout again and that its new shoots will not fail (see Job 14:7), no matter my downfall, I will rise again. If tree’s roots grow old in the ground and its stump die in the soil, and yet at the scent of water it will bud and put forth shoots like a plant (see Job 14:8-9), no matter my set back, I will progress in life. I join Prophet Micah to declare: “Do not gloat over me, my enemy! Though I have fallen, I will rise. Though I sit in darkness, the Lord will be my light” (7:8 NIV).
The Lord took Prophet Ezekiel to the valley of very dry bones, and asked him if the dry bones could live again. The prophet could not answer in the affirmative. God asked him to prophesy to the dry bones. He did, and the dry bones came back to life (see Ezekiel 37).
Are you feeling lifeless and hopeless in your situation? You will live again! There is hope for you. You may be in the winter time of your life, the spring time is coming when you will spring up. If the Lord is keeping His promise for ordinary plants and trees, He will fulfil His promises in your life. I say again, you will live again!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 27 Mar 2016, 9:25 pm

Dearly Beloved,
ONCE FOR ALL!
“When Christ came as high priest of the good things that are already here, he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not man-made, that is to say, not a part of this creation. He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption” (Hebrews 9:11-12 NIV).
Every year, on the Day of Atonement, the high priest in the Mosaic Law had to sacrifice with the blood of goats and rams for the atonement of the sins of the Israelites. He was to first of all atone for his own sins by the blood of a ram before using the blood of goats to atone for the sins of the people. This had to be done every year. This is explained in Leviticus 16:3-10 and recaptured in Hebrews 9:1-8. The recipients of the epistle to the Hebrews understood these concepts of priesthood and sacrifice very well.
However, Jesus Christ surpasses any high priest because He came to sacrifice His own blood on the cross of Calvary once for all. While the Levitical high priests had to use the blood of bulls to first of all atone for their sins, Jesus Christ is sinless, so He does not need to do that. While the Levitical high priests thereafter had to use ordinary blood of goats to atone for the sins of the people, Jesus Christ used His own precious blood to atone for the sin of humankind. While the Levitical high priests would sacrifice in man-made tabernacles, Jesus Christ presented Himself to God by “greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not man-made”. While the Levitical high priests would have to repeat this sacrifice every year, Jesus Christ offered Himself once for all. His offering on the cross is the ultimate sacrifice, there is no other. No wonder, He said on the cross: "It is finished" (John 19:30 NIV). 
It is a pity that many people find it difficult to accept the once-for-all finished sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. They still prefer the Levitical order to what Jesus Christ has done. They prefer to offer their own sacrifices of good works. They still want an intermediary that will help them to take their sacrifices to God. Many even still make blood sacrifices to appease God!
It is finished! It is once-for-all sacrifice by Jesus Christ. No other sacrifice is needed or accepted by God. And every one that accepts this once-for-all sacrifice by Jesus Christ will have eternal redemption and eternal inheritance. Have you accepted this sacrifice, or are you still trying to serve God in your own way?
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will totally accept the once-for-all sacrifice by Jesus Christ for your life.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 20 Mar 2016, 11:48 pm

Dearly Beloved,

A LESSON FROM ST. PATRICK

“Do not take revenge, myfriends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine toavenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord. On the contrary: ‘If your enemy ishungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this,you will heap burning coals on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, butovercome evil with good” (Romans 12:19-21 NIV).

March 17 is set apart inthe island of Ireland and many other parts of the world to celebrate St.Patrick’s Day. St. Patrick of Ireland born in Roman Britain was captured byIrish pirates during a raiding party when he was around fourteen years. He wasa slave tending sheep in Ireland until when he was twenty when he was able to escape.He later became a priest and was sent to evangelize Ireland where he was ableto do many marvellous things and convert many people to Christianity. In fact,he is considered as the one who brought Christianity to Ireland. He died atSaul, where he had built the first Irish church. He is believed to be buried inDown Cathedral, Downpatrick, Northern Ireland.

Someone has written thisabout him: “Patrick was a humble, pious, gentle man, whose love and totaldevotion to and trust in God should be a shining example to each of us. Socomplete was his trust in God, and of the importance of his mission, he fearednothing - not even death.” However, an important lesson from the life of thisgreat man of God is his love for his enemies who made him slave and treated himcruelly for almost seven years before he could escape. Although, he wassupposedly moved by dream to go back to Ireland and preach the Gospel there, hecould have out of hatred refused to go to Ireland and instead go elsewhere towork for God. He did not repay the Irish people with evil they had done him. Rather,he overcame their evil with good by going back to the place to become a channelof God’s blessings to that generation. Today, he is being celebrated not onlyby the Irish people who used to be his enemies, but by people throughout theworld.

It is unfortunate thatmany people today do not want to be of help to their perceived enemies. They wouldrather wish those enemies dead or ill-luck. Some even waste their preciousprayer times in praying against their enemies while Jesus Christ teaches thatwe should love and pray FOR our enemies (see Matthew 5:44; Luke 6:27-36). Hedemonstrated this on the cross (see Luke 23:34) and Stephen followed Hisexample (Acts 7:60).

Who are your perceived enemies?Are you ready to help them if you have the opportunity? Or, are you in the habitof praying against your enemies? Love your perceived enemies and do good untothem. The Lord will reward you greatly for this.

In His service,

Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Prayer Point: Pray thatyou will be able to pray for your perceived enemies and even help them if youhave the opportunity.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 13 Mar 2016, 6:20 pm

Doulos Meditation on John 1:12

Scripture: John 1:12—Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children  of God—children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

Reflection: Salvation from sin is the action God takes in each person who receives Jesus, and John is very clear that this involves “believing in his name.” We have little feel for doing something “in the name.” Names for us are more likely to be mere tags or symbols—just a way of distinguishing horses from elephants. Not so the ancient Jewish thought. A name was authority, power, and indeed the projection of the person himself in all his reality.


Some saw who Jesus really was. They “believed” but this was far different than just having an opinion. Without reservation they trusted themselves to the name; hesitation was over; they surrendered all they were, all they had, and their entire future to the one is whose name they “believed.” Those doing so found themselves changed by God—“new birth” was their description. It caused transformation, obedience, and transcendent hope in all takers. 

Prayer Starter: Father, the world is dying not because you have not taken action, but because humans reject your grace. Fill us who believe with your Spirit, transform us and show us how to bring others to share in this blessing. Amen.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Mon 07 Mar 2016, 11:51 pm

Dearly Beloved,
TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!
"Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses" (1 Timothy 5:23 NIV).
The above Bible passage has been one of the most misinterpreted and misapplied ones. In fact, it is one of those controversial verses of the Bible. Drunkards and those that are inclined to drinking too much wine and alcoholic drinks are quick to refer to it in support of their action. However, as I was in a Sunday school class one Sunday, I saw a different application to the instruction of Paul to Timothy: Timothy should take care of himself. The means of doing this was taking of some wine. Other places where the Bible refers to wine as something of medicinal substance are: Second Samuel 16:2 where it was said to revive the faint; Proverbs 31:6 where it was said to be suitable as a sedative for people in distress; Luke 10:34 where the Samaritan poured oil and wine on the wounds of the injured traveller; and Matthew 27:34 and Mark 15:23 where it was mixed with a drug to ease suffering. 
Well, this devotional write-up is not aimed at supporting or not supporting the use of wine, but to underscore the importance of taking care of oneself. Paul was concerned about the wellbeing of Timothy, and he recommended to him a way of taking care of himself. No doubt, Timothy yielded to this advice to his own good.
Medical and other advices have been given to many people today, and many people do not yield to such good advices to their detriment. Are you one of such people that do not yield to medical, professional, ministerial and other specialized advices about your health, business, family or other endeavors? Part of taking care of yourself is yielding to such good advices.
"Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise" (Proverbs 19:20 NIV). 
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Lord, help me to always take of myself in every ramification.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 21 Feb 2016, 9:35 pm

Dearly Beloved,
THE EIGHTY-SIXTH PSALM
“Hear, O Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy.... Hear my prayer, O Lord; listen to my cry for mercy” (Psalm 86:1, 6 NIV).
Psalm 86 was supposedly written by King David, though its placement among the psalms ascribed to “the Sons of Korah” made some people to doubt its Davidic authorship. However, its contents and layout resemble most of the psalms that are ascribed to David without any controversy. The writer of this psalm was undoubtedly in a danger, and he called on God to deliver him from his enemies.
The psalmist considered himself as somebody who is “poor and needy,” therefore, he prayed that God should hear and answer his prayers (verse 1). There are at least five different kinds of prayers in this psalm:
One, prayer of protection: because the psalmist was being attacked by people he regarded as “the arrogant” and “a band of ruthless men” in verse 14, his first prayer point was that God should guard his life (verse 2). He could attest to the fact that he was devoted to and trust in God, hence, this prayer.
Two, prayer for mercy: thrice in this psalm, the psalmist cried out to God for mercy (verses 3, 6, 16). He knew that only God could grant him mercy.
Three, prayer of forgiveness: the psalmist regarded God as a forgiving God who is good and abounding in love. By implication, he was asking God to forgive him as he was crying to Him.
Four, prayer of worship: in spite of his predicament, the psalmist worshipped God for who He is (verses 8-10).
Five, prayer of praises: closely related to the previous prayer is this. The psalmist praised God for what He is doing (verses 10, 12, 13). His predicament did not blindfold him to who God is and what His had done in his life.
There are other prayers for joy (verse 4), instruction (verse 11), and the goodness of God (verse 17) also in this psalm. The eighty-sixth psalm is indeed worthy of meditation.
What is your predicament presently? Are you also ready to cry to God? He has promised, “...call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me” (Psalm 50:15 NIV). Cry unto Him, and He is ready to answer you.
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Lord, help me not stop crying unto You till you answer me.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 1:50 am

Dearly Beloved,
DO NOT FORGET YOUR GOD
"When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you. Be careful that you do not forget the LORD your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day" (Deuteronomy 8:10-11 NIV).
One of the recipients of my weekly messages reacted to the message I sent out last week about the reason why people especially the younger generation no longer go to church in the western world. From his experience for the past eleven years he has been living in this western world, he pointed out that the reason I gave is just one out of hundreds of reasons for the decline in church attendance in the western world. He went ahead to list many other reasons. Most of his reasons bother on the wellbeing of most people in this part of the world. Their problem is how to manage the wellbeing, not the absence of it as it is the case in other parts of underdeveloped and developing world. So, most people in the western world think that they do not need God or the church.
These man’s reasons remind me of Moses' valedictory speech to the people of Israel at his old age that contained warnings. One of such warnings is the one quoted above: do not forget your God when you are at ease. Moses knew that it is easier to remember God when we are in need than when things are going on well with us.
In the same way, the rich man in Jesus' parable in Luke 12:16-21 failed to yield to this warning. He had a bountiful harvest. His possession became his idol and he forgot God the Giver. That day, his life was taken from him, and his possession became other people's possession. Jesus Christ pointed out the meaning of prosperity without God: "This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God" (Luke 12:21 NIV).
Beloved, it shall be well with you! God will satisfy you with many good things. His good promise will surely come to pass in your life. However, will you not forget God when you are satisfied with the desires of your heart? Will you still remember to serve Him with what He has blessed you with?
Do not be like that rich fool nor like most people in the western world. Placing God, the Giver above the gifts is a mark of true achievement. Do not forget your God when it is well with you. Serve and obey Him the more. He rewards.
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also" (Matthew 6:19-21 NIV).
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that your wellbeing will not make you to forget your God.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 07 Feb 2016, 7:08 pm

Dearly Beloved,
ARE YOU NOT AT FAULT ALSO?
“The word of the Lord came to me: ‘Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy and say to them: “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Woe to the shepherds of Israel who only take care of themselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? You eat the curds, clothe yourselves with the wool and slaughter the choice animals, but you do not take care of the flock”’” (Ezekiel 34:1-3 NIV).
In less than a month of my sojourn in the United Kingdom, I have discovered many pathetic things about the western world. One of those things is the decline in the number of people that go to church, especially the absence of youth in most of the churches. Many church buildings have become empty and been sold because of this. This has been a great burden to me, and I always ask pastors here what they are doing to bring back the youth into the church. Just of recent, I discovered that I have been asking the wrong question! I met a lady in her early fifties who told me that the last time she went to church was when she was sixteen. I asked her why she stopped going to church and she told me a bitter truth about the church here: the church has become institutionalized and the church leaders are not living by example. She cited some examples of the atrocities that the church leaders were doing then which are becoming worse even today. One of such atrocities she emphasized is the fact most of the church leaders are getting richer at the expense of their congregations. She pointed out that the youth here will continue to abandon the church because the people of the church are not practising what they preach. I had no option that day than to agree with her because I know that she was saying the truth. No wonder, many people (especially the younger generation) are no longer interested in the things of the church.
The indictment of the church leaders by this white lady reminds me of the leaders of the people of Israel in the time of Prophet Ezekiel (see Ezekiel 34). The Lord indicted these leaders because they were self-centred. They did not care about the people that they led. The people were suffering under their watch while the leaders continued to live in affluence. This made the people to wander away in search of care. God was not happy with these leaders and promised to hold them accountable (see verse 10).
Are you a church leader? Are you not at fault also of this indictment? Are you not self-centred to the detriment of people you are leading? Do you care about your congregation? Can your congregation follow your example or you are expecting them to just be following your messages? Do you attract people to the church or are you driving them away from the church because of your way of life?
Well, if you are just a member of a church, the infamous way of life of your church leaders should not drive you away from the church. Jesus Christ is our ultimate role Model. He should be your standard (see Hebrews 12:1-2), not any church leader no matter how highly placed or respected. 
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Lord, help me not to mislead the people you have entrusted into my care.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 31 Jan 2016, 3:23 pm

Dearly Beloved,
IT IS WELL WITH MY SOUL
“But God will rescue me; he will save me from the power of death” (Psalm 49:15 TEV).
The hymn, “It is Well with My Soul” is one of the most popular Christian hymns. Horatio Gates Spafford (1828–1888) composed it. When Spafford was forty-three years old as a Chicago businessman, he suffered financial disaster in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. He and his wife were still grieving over the death of their son shortly before the fire, and he realized they needed to get away for a vacation. Knowing that their friend Dwight L. Moody was going to be preaching in evangelistic campaigns in England that fall, Spafford decided to take the entire family to England. His wife and four daughters went ahead by a ship, and he planned to follow in a few days. Nevertheless, on the Atlantic Ocean, an iron sailing vessel struck the ship and the ship sank within twelve minutes. Two hundred and twenty-six lives were lost — including the Spaffords’ four daughters. When the survivors were brought to shore at Cardiff, Wales, Mrs. Anna Spafford cabled her husband with two words: “Saved alone.” Spafford booked passage on the next ship. As they were crossing the Atlantic, the captain pointed out the place where he thought the first ship had gone down. That night, Spafford penned the words of the hymn: “When peace like a river attendeth my way... it is well, it is well with my soul.” 
One of the close associates of Jesus Christ betrayed Him. He was arrested, tried and condemned to die on the cross. He was crucified and died. However, as the Psalmist prophesied in Psalm 49:15, God saved Him from the power of death, and He resurrected on the third day. The suffering and death of Jesus Christ were not pleasant, but He triumphed over everything. Today, His name is exalted above every other name “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:10-11 NIV). Horatio and Anna Spafford later moved to Israel and became channels of God’s blessings to many people there. It was indeed well with their souls.
Trial, temptation, hardship, calamity, death of loved one, or anything that happens to us is not the end of the road. No matter what you may be passing through, the Lord will indeed rescue you from all of it and you will join Horatio Spafford to sincerely sing, “It is well with my soul, It is well, it is well with my soul.” “Weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5 NIV).
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Lord, help me to be able to depend on You no matter what befalls me.
_________________________
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 9:17 pm

Dearly Beloved,
GOD WILL FORGIVE, BUT...
“Then David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord.’ Nathan replied, ‘The Lord has taken away your sin. You are not going to die. But because by doing this you have made the enemies of the Lord show utter contempt, the son born to you will die’” (2 Samuel 12:13-14 NIV).
I still remember vividly an encounter I had with an elderly man during a Sunday School general session in a village church over twenty years ago. It was question time, and a question was raised about the life of David, especially his issue with Bathsheba. The elderly man was of the opinion that if God could forgive David after his sins with Bathsheba, He will forgive anyone that sins and comes for forgiveness. My response then was (and still now is) if the elderly man wanted what happened to David to happen to him, he should continue to sin and then come to God later for forgiveness. God will really forgive, but....
What happened to David after his sins and confession? The son born out the adultery died (2 Samuel 12:14, 18); there was no longer peace in the household of David; one of his sons, Amnon, raped his half-sister, Tamar (2 Samuel 13:1-14); another son, Absalom, killed Amnon for this (2 Samuel 13:28-29; Absalom planned a coup against his father, David (2 Samuel 15); and Absalom sexually molested ten of the wives of David publicly (2 Samuel 16:21-22). David was forgiven indeed, but the repercussions of his sins were too much. Though forgiven, the sins were like scars of a wound that remained in his life for life (see 1 Kings 15:5). 
There are many Bible passages that teach about the forgiveness of sin. Here are some:
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9 NIV).
“He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy” (Proverbs 28:13 NIV).
“Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’ — and you forgave the guilt of my sin” (Psalm 32:5 NIV).
There are also others like Leviticus 26:40-42 and 1 Kings 8:47, but what of the repercussions of the sins?
Are you also of the opinion that you can go on sinning because God will forgive you if you confess your sin? Good. He will definitely forgive you if you confess, but remember the repercussion of the sin. A scar in the body can never be as the other parts of the body. It is better not to sin than to sin and run to God for forgiveness. He will forgive, but....
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will not play with sin because of the compassion of God.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Mon 11 Jan 2016, 2:12 pm

Dearly Beloved,
IT IS NOT ORDINARY!
“I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the Lord sustains me” (Psalm 3:5 NIV).
Every morning, my alarm clock would ring by 4.30am and I would wake up and start my daily routine. At times, I would have woken up before the sound of the alarm. This has been happening for years, and I tend to think that it is ordinary or normal to wake up early in the morning either by the sound of the alarm or before its rings. However, it recently dawned on me that it is really not ordinary to sleep and wake up; it is a divine arrangement and grace. If you do not agree with this, place an alarm beside a dead man and see if he would wake up when the alarm rings. 
It is not ordinary or normal to sleep and wake up. Only God makes one to do so every day. The psalmist realized this and declared, “I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the Lord sustains me” (Psalm 3:5 NIV). “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8 NIV). “In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat — for [God] grants sleep to those he loves” (Psalm 127:2 NIV).
Sleeping and waking up are not only things that we consider normal or ordinary. Breathing, eating, drinking, talking, hearing, walking, lifting of hands and any other part of our body, in fact, everything that one can think of as ordinary or normal are not really ordinary and normal. It is God in His infinite mercy that has arranged them and allows us to be enjoying them. As part of His covenant with Noah after the flood, God said, “As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease” (Genesis 8:22 NIV). He continues to keep that covenant! 
The implication of this is that we ought to always praise God for the gift of life every day and the ability to do what we are able to do each day. Thank you Lord for everything. It is not ordinary!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Lord, help me not to take the seemingly ordinary things of life for granted, but to always appreciate you for all these things.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Mon 04 Jan 2016, 11:05 pm

Dearly Beloved,
WILL YOU PRAISE GOD THIS YEAR?
“Praise the Lord. How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him!” (Psalm 147:1 NIV).
The prayers of my family and me for the year 2016 for people in my Internet ministry was based on Psalm 147:8-9, 13-14. Psalm 147 is one of the “Hallelujah Psalms” – the last five psalms that started and ended with the expression “Praise the LORD.” In Psalm 147, the psalmist highlighted who the LORD is and some of the things that He has done that made him (that is, the psalmist) started and ended the psalm with the expression “Praise the LORD.” The LORD is great and mighty in power, and His understanding is limitless (verse 5). In His greatness and mighty, He determines the number of the stars as numerous as they are and calls each of them by name (verse 4). His deeds include restoration (verses 2-3), sustenance (verse 6), provision (verses 8-9), strength (verse 13), blessings (verse 13), peace (verse 14), satisfaction (verse 14), control over nature (verses 15-18), and revelation of His words (verse 19). No wonder, the psalmist enjoined his audience to sing to the Lord with thanksgiving, make music to Him on the musical instruments, extol Him, and praise Him (verses 7, 12). It is indeed good, pleasant and fitting to sing praises to the LORD (verse 1).
However, as the psalmist was highlighting what the LORD is doing, he briefly mentioned something that delights the LORD – trust in His unfailing love (verse 11). The LORD does not want man to trust in himself or any other thing apart from Him, the LORD (verse 10). Undoubtedly, relying on the LORD is a crucial way to praise Him.
Indeed, the LORD deserves our praises for who He is and what He is doing in our lives. He has done many things in our lives in the past years; He has started doing so in this young year; and He will continue to do so till the end of ages. Can you also highlight what the LORD has done for you in the past and what He is still doing for you presently? Will you praise Him this year especially by totally relying on Him? Praise Him with your whole heart and He will give you more reasons to praise Him and demonstrate His greatness more in your life. Praise the LORD!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will praise the LORD this year by totally relying on Him.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sat 02 Jan 2016, 10:39 pm

Dearly Beloved,
OUR PRAYERS FOR YOU IN THE YEAR 2016
Happy New Year (2016). Glory be to the Almighty God for enabling us to see this brand new year. 
Opeyemi (my wife), Boluwatife, IfeOluwa, Michael, Abraham (my children) and I are welcoming you to this New Year with these prophetic prayers adapted from Psalm 147:8-9, 13-14 (AMP). 
This New Year:
- The Lord will cover you with His splendour;
- He will strengthen and make you flourish in all your endeavours;
- He will specially meet you at the point of your needs and fill you with the finest of His goodness;
- He will bless your offspring wherever they may be; and
- He will give you peace in your borders in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Happy and prosperous New Year!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor),
Irish School of Ecumenics (Trinity College Dublin at Belfast)
683 Antrim Road, Belfast BT15 4EG
United Kingdom
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 27 Dec 2015, 7:20 pm

Dearly Beloved,
FORGET WHAT IS BEHIND
"Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:12-14 NIV).
Glory be to God that we have come to the end of another year. The Lord has done many things for me in the year, and I know He has done many things also for you this year that make Him deserve our praises and worship. Let us return all glory to Him for everything He made us to achieve in the year.
However, I cannot achieve a particular goal that has to do with my study here in the United Kingdom this old year. I thought the goal would have been achieved by the end of the third quarter of the year. God still keeps me waiting to achieve it till now. Nevertheless, He still remains the faithful God that I can rely on. As the year is running to an end, I have learnt to forget what is behind and press on.
Take an honest look at yourself. Have you also been disappointed in one way or the other in this old year? Are you unable to achieve your set goals for the year? Do not be dismayed. Forget what is behind and press on in the coming year. The New Year will be better for you in Jesus' name. Amen.
Have you achieved your goals this year? Did you have many successes in the year? Praise God! However, do not let those achievements and successes blindfold you. God is taking you to higher ground. Do like Paul, "forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead…." Aim for higher things. Remember that old song, "Good, Better, Best/ I shall never rest,/ until my good is better,/ and my better's best."
Happy New Year (2016) in advance!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will be able to leave the unachieved goals of this year behind and forge ahead for a better year (2016).

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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Tue 22 Dec 2015, 12:19 am

Dearly Beloved,
HE WILL SELL FEW COWS!
for every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills (Psalm 50:10 NIV).
Recently, I was chatting with a pastor-colleague on Facebook and told her about my financial challenge as I continue my postgraduate study here in the United Kingdom. Here was her response: God is faithful. He will do it. That is small. Just a few cows He will sell to settle it.Cows? I questioned. What have cows got to do with my situation and God's faithfulness in meeting my needs? She then referred me to the above quoted verse and explained that God has everything including the cattle on a thousand hills and what He needs to do is just to sell some of the cows to meet my needs. It was then I understood her point. I had a better understanding as I reflected on cattle rearers who usually sell some of their cows to meet their essential needs. 
While God does not need to sell any cow or any other thing for that matter to be able to meet the needs of His loved ones, He knows what to do, how to do it, and when to do it to meet their needs in His own way and in His own time. There were thousands of people that followed Jesus Christ to listen to Him. A time came when these people needed to be cared for. Jesus asked His disciples what they would do to feed these people. However, the writer of the Gospel added this: ..he already had in mind what he was going to do (John 6:6 NIV). The thousands of people were provided for with many baskets full of left over. 
Are you also in need of one thing or the other? Apostle Paul told the Philippians: And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus (4:19 NIV). You do not need to be worried or lose hope. Paul had earlier warned: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God(Philippians 4:6 NIV). God is faithful. He will do it. That is small. Just a few cows He will sell to settle it. Do you believe this? 
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will not worry about your needs, but that you will learn to trust God for the provision of your needs.
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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Mon 14 Dec 2015, 1:09 am

Dearly Beloved,
ENRICHED WITH HONOUR
“But the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favour with God.’ ...And Mary said: ‘My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed...’” (Luke 1:30, 46-48 NIV).
The reality of the real meanings of my names (Adebayo Olayinka Afolaranmi) manifested as I celebrated my fortieth birthday anniversary on December 8, 2010. I had similar experience last Tuesday as I celebrated another birthday. In Yoruba language, “Adebayo” means “One who has come to meet joy,” “Olayinka” means “I am surrounded by honour,” while “Afolaranmi” (my father’s name) means “I am enriched with honour.” Actually, the month of December has been a special month in my life: I was born on December 8, 1970; I got married on December 19, 1998; my daughter was born on December 7, 2002; my family moved to our personal house on December 23, 2005; my elder sister gave birth to her new baby on December 6, 2010 in a miraculous way; my wife got a new employment on December 6, 2010 after she was without a job for almost a year; twice God saved me from danger on December 8, 1992 and 2010; this year, in this month of December, I had breakthrough in a particular aspect of my study here in the UK, and my wife had another remarkable breakthrough. December 25 has been set apart to commemorate the birth of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. These incidents were never coincidental. Indeed, I have come to meet the joy and goodness of God; God has surrounded me and enriched me with His honour. I never thought of these things till December 8, 2010 (and this year also) when people were rejoicing with me and I looked back and reflected on the goodness of God to me. Glory be to His holy name! 
As I was reflecting on this, I remembered Mary the mother of Jesus. She was so favoured and honoured by God that she was used as the instrument of bringing the Saviour of the world to this world. The Roman Catholics still venerate her till today, though to an extreme. There were many virgins in Israel when God chose her. Likewise, there are many people on earth when God chose me to be favoured and honoured the way He did, and is still doing it. Once again, glory be to His holy name!
Have you reflected on how God has favoured and honoured you also? Do you appreciate Him for this? Do not say He has not done so. Indeed, “He has blessed us by giving us every spiritual blessing in the heavenly world” (Ephesians 1:3 TEV). You might have not got what you want from Him, but I know that He has enriched you also with His favour and honour. I pray that as this year is running to an end, He will enrich you more with His honour and favour in Jesus’ name. Amen.
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Points:
1. Thank God for how He has enriched you with His honour, favour and goodness.
2. Pray that you will always appreciate God for His favour and goodness in your life.
3. As this year is running to an end, pray that God will enrich you more with His honour and favour.
NB
I am so grateful to people that sent comments and prayers to me on the occasion of my birthday last Tuesday through e-greetings, SMS, phone calls, messages and comments by email, Facebook, etc. Some even sent birthday gifts to me! I am honoured. God will honour you also in your entire endeavour. Amen.
* Message originally posted on December 11, 2010. 

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Re: Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

Post  Admin on Sun 06 Dec 2015, 11:46 pm

Dearly Beloved,
WHOSE SPIRIT?
"When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to" (Acts 16:7 NIV).
I can still remember vividly a little drama in my Yoruba Sunday school class many years ago when an elderly man was reading the above quoted passage. Instead of reading "the Spirit of Jesus," he read "the spirit of the devil." Interestingly, the word for the devil in Yoruba language, "ESU" is short of a letter from the transliteration of the word for Jesus in the language "JESU." The elderly man unintentionally confused the two words together. The other members of the class tried to cleverly correct the old man. Nevertheless, I learnt a lesson from the confusion.
Reading the passage superficially, one may tend to intentionally think that it was the spirit of the devil that was hindering Paul and his companions to enter Bithynia to preach the gospel there. Probably, that was the thinking of the elderly man that misread the verse. However, it was the Spirit of JESUS, not that of the devil that did not allow them to go there because of His own divine plan for the missionary journey of Paul.
The lesson from this misunderstanding of the verse is that there has been confusion to the spirit that is leading many men of God today, especially those that find it difficult to differentiate between the Spirit of Jesus and the spirit of the devil. Do you recognize when the Spirit of Jesus is leading you to do things that are contrary to your seeming good plan? Do you willingly yield to the leading of the Spirit of Jesus when He leads you to do things in His own way?
It is a pity that the spirit of the devil is the one that is leading many people today, and they think that it is the Spirit of Jesus. Whose spirit is leading you, the Spirit of "JESU" or the spirit of "ESU"?
"For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God" (Romans 8:14 NASB).
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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