Evangelism

Jehovah has the final say! By Barr. E.T.C. Ogbusu, KSC

I hate to see people talk, behave and generally carry themselves as if they have the final say over every matter. They behave as if this world belongs to them, despite the fact that none of us was there when the world was being created and that human beings were the last to be created, of all things created.  What is more painful is that there are very many of such people all over the place. They are in the families, church, government, schools, markets and even clubs. They would not want others rest. They threaten other people’s peace, always ready to ask you if you do not know who they are and what they can do. Most times, they will hit their hands on whatever is available, whether their chests, the table or the ground and challenge you to a bet if they would not show you who they are or to teach you a lesson of your life.

In some places, these people who think they have the final say have constituted themselves into terrorists, to the extent that not many people would want to hold a different view from their own, or to put it the proper way, not many would like to cross their ways. Who wants their trouble, anyway?

“A whole me!” Whenever you hear someone say something like this, then, you have seen someone who thinks he or she has the final say. He or she thinks he or she is bigger than every one else. I wonder who told him or her so.

However, every day in our lives, we see things that ought to make us know that none of us has the final say in anything that concerns us. For instance, I have not seen anyone who refused to die when death came knocking. The best we can do is try to resist death. Some would be flown out of the country to other countries for treatment as if death has no jurisdiction over such countries. Many of such people still die after spending so much money and time, meaning we do not have the final say over our lives. Yet, we prefer not to learn from those things that happen around us.

Have you not seen people crash-land from grace to grass before? I mean, people who used to eat on the table before with golden spoons and forks, now eating on the ground with bare hands or fingers? Such is life and it does show that we do not have the final say over our fortunes. The same way a man can crash-land from grace to grass, is the same way someone can rise from grass to grace. We also have people who fall down with nothing but get up with something. That is life for you.

The lesson, which life has been trying hard to teach us is that this world does not belong to any of us and as such, no one of us, or collection of us, has the final say in anything. We really need to know that this life belongs to someone other than us human beings. He has the final say because all power belongs to Him. He is almighty! His name is Jehovah! He cannot share his glory with anyone! (Isa. 42:8). He is a jealous God and those who tried to take His glory or arrogate to themselves the power that belong to Him in the past, paid the supreme price. Ask Herod, if you ever get to see him, how it feels like trying to take the glory that should go to God. Ask him if he would ever like to take it again (Acts 12:19-23).

Brethren, we are not God and so, we must stop behaving as if all power belongs to us. We have no such right. God is the only one who can say it and it will happen. It follows, therefore, that no matter how tyrannical or uncaring the leadership of any nation may be, the leaders of that nation do not have the final say concerning the future of the citizens of that nation. If they steal all the money for only the benefits of the members of their families, the nation must survive if God says so. This should give us some hope in the midst of oppressive and callous governance we pass through in our nation, at all levels.

In the same way, the present or future of every family depends on what God says about them, not on what the greedy head of family does or says. The widows and orphans in the families, therefore, have reason to rejoice, and not be reminded of their dead loved ones at any deprivation, injustice or provocation by any member of their extended families.

God has already said that His Church will move on and the gates of hades shall not prevail against it. (Mt. 16:18). It follows that no matter how much some Church leaders, cutting across the episcopacy, the clergy and the laity, try to put clogs in the wheels of the Church, the Church of God must move on because He who has the final say and He has said so.

I do not know what your problem is! May be, you are so sick and everyone has written you off. Perhaps your doctor has told you to keep your house in order, and probably write a Will before you die in a couple of weeks! Hold your breathe my dear! Do not lose it! I want to assure you that until God speaks, you have not heard the final word.

The truth is that God knew you before you were formed in your mother’s womb (Jer.1:5). He also has engraved you in his palms (Isa.49:16). So, He alone knows whether you will die or not and when. Your doctor does not know and does not have the final say. You too do not know and cannot say. And certainly, God has not delegated anyone to announce to you that the sickness you are passing through now will kill you. It does not matter what the length of that sickness has been. Have you not heard that He healed the man by the pool of Bethesda who had been sick for thirty eight years? (John 5:1-9). Have you not heard that what that woman with issue of blood needed to do to be healed after years was a touch of the helm of Christ’s garment? (Mt.9:21). So, you see, it is all a matter of faith!

I am aware that some people are living in fear, not because they want to, but because, they are afraid of those who claim to have the final say over their lives. I am telling you the truth and I want you to believe that the only one who has the keys to your life is God. This is why He has said to us, “Do not fear, because I am with you!” (Gen. 26:24; Isa. 41:10-13). If God is for you, who can be against you?                I think this is why it is said that one with God is majority, that is to say, when God is with you, then those who are with you are more than those who are against you.

Do you remember how many times Saul tried to kill David? Do you remember how many times he threw the spear at David (1 Sam.18:10; 1Sam 19:10)? It is because God had not spoken, even when Saul was speaking death for David, that all the efforts made by him to take David’s life came to nothing. Instead, God gave him over to the hands of David twice and twice did David spare his life (1 Sam.24; 1 Sam. 26). God even used Saul’s son (Jonathan) to frustrate his efforts to harm David (1 Sam.20).

I say to you this day that because God is not a man that can tell lies (Num.23:19; 1Sam:15:29), He will always honour His word that He is with you. I want you to notice that He did not say He will be with you at some times and not be with you at other times. He says He is with you always. So, in the midst of traps set for you by those who think they have the final say over your life, God will deliver you. He can even use the members of their families to ferry you through their traps.

Goliath probably thought he was speaking the final word about David’s life when he said to him, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beast of the field!” (1 Sam. 17:44). But who was he to say when the Lord had not spoken? The Lord spoke and the hunter became the hunted. When the Lord said the final words, the sword and spear of a giant experienced warlord gave way and the giant slumped at the feet of a small boy who had come to him not with a spear or sword, but in the name of the Lord of hosts (1 Sam. 17:45-49).

Haman suffered the same fate. At the peak of his political success, he thought he had the final say in everything that concerned King Xerxes’ palace. He planned the extermination of the Israelites and built a gallow upon which Moredecai was to be hanged at his instigation. But when the final say came from God, Haman himself was not only forced to honour Mordecai but was also hanged on the gallow he built for him, Mordecai (Est.5-6; Est.7.9-10). Do you know God can make those who try to dishonor you to honour you in public?  Do you know He can make your enemies fall into the same ditch they have dug for you? He can, yes, He can!

It is possible you do not have a husband of your own and people are saying you will never get married because age is not on your side or that you are married but you do not have a child to show for it, and people are making caricature of you. Instead of fighting them back in their own words or crying out your eyes and thinking that God hates you, when He does not, tell them that God has the final say. With that, you can rest your case!

I have a word of advice for some of us who have “arrived”, so to say, and who think that because of that, the final word or say belongs to them. If God has blessed you, it should humble you and not make you begin to see yourself as all in all. It does not help, and you will agree if you remember the Richman in the parable of the Richfool. God blessed him. Unfortunately, he began to see his achievements as the work of his hands, and began to think of what he would do next. Then the one who has the final say said to him, “Fool, this night your soul is needed” and he died (Lk.12:13-21). I do not wish the same fate for anyone of us. But I will not be happy if I fail to remind us that such thing can still happen.

In his letter to the twelve tribes of Israel, James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, wrote: “Come now, you who say, today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, if the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that. But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil” (Jas. 4:13-16).

What James is saying here is that God has the final say and so, whenever we want or plan to do anything, we should bear in mind that God has the final say. We should remember to say, “By the grace of God” in everything we plan to do, bearing in mind that some who made their plans for the next day never got up from sleep to see that next day. Many who set out of their houses to pursue their plans for the day died before getting to their destinations. Others who got to their destinations never achieved their plans. Yet, others who planned for little got so overwhelmingly blessed that they began to think that such achievements were so real to be true.

What we are saying, brethren, is that you should never give up hope on anything you are doing or anything which concerns you. If it is your marriage, remember you have a duty to make it work again. Remember there are people out there who, for reasons known or unknown to you, do not want your marriage to succeed. They will say a lot of things. But all you need do is prove them wrong by listening to hear what the Lord will say in respect of your marriage.

Again, if your business is going down the valley, hope that the Lord who knows how to say positive things will finally say something positive about your business.

Actually, the bottomline of what I am saying is that “if you try and fail, try, try, try again”. It may be that in a challenging situation which you are facing, God has designed that you will laugh at last. Remember, it is said that “He who laughs last laughs the best” and that “God’s time is always the best”. Therefore, write that examinations again hoping that God will do it for you. Apply for that job again, notwithstanding that you have no human person to speak for you.

In the final analysis, I want you all to always remember that in everything, God has the final say and He will never fail to say something. As James said to the twelve tribes of Israel in the scripture quoted earlier, it is arrogance that makes people fail to appreciate the truth that God has the final say. Moreover, boasting or creating the impression that we have the final say is a sin before God. May God help us to see the truth in the saying that He has the final say.

 

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