Topic: Divine Acceptance [Monday 27, March 2017]
Memorise: And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. – Isaiah 65:24
Read: Acts 10:30-44 (KJV)
30 And Cornelius said, Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and, behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,
31 And said, Cornelius, thy prayer is heard, and thine alms are had in remembrance in the sight of God.
32 Send therefore to Joppa, and call hither Simon, whose surname is Peter; he is lodged in the house of one Simon a tanner by the sea side: who, when he cometh, shall speak unto thee.
33 Immediately therefore I sent to thee; and thou hast well done that thou art come. Now therefore are we all here present before God, to hear all things that are commanded thee of God.
34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:
35 But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.
36 The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)
37 That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
39 And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:
40 Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;
41 Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before of God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead.
42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.
44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.
Bible in One Year: Exodus 31-32, Jeremiah 2:33-3:10
“And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.” – Isaiah 65:24
The above scripture contains a very profound promise from God to His people. The Lord manifested His commitment to fulfilling this promise in today’s Bible reading. Acts 10:44 says,
“While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.”
Before Peter finished his sermon, he had not even made any altar call or said any prayer when God poured out His Spirit, and the fire fell on all those hearing his voice. The answer to Cornelius’ prayer came while Peter was still speaking, in consonance with the promise of God in Isaiah 65:24. Do you know that the devil still delays prayers? This is why it is very important for us to be baptized in the Holy Spirit; this helps to expedite answers to our prayers (Romans 8:26). When you pray with your understanding or in a language the devil understands, he can take steps to hinder the answer to that prayer. In Daniel 10:1-14, when Daniel decided to set himself apart to seek God’s face in fasting and prayer, God immediately dispatched an angel to bring him the answer to his request that very day. However, the devil equally sent a principality to block the way of this angel for 21 days, until reinforcement was sent to help him. If you pray in the Spirit, the devil will be thrown into confusion, and he won’t know when the answer to prayer is coming; neither will he know the angel bringing it. In that way, the answer to your prayer is not hindered.
In addition to answering the prayer of Cornelius, God also accepted his offerings. There is nothing as painful as offering something to God and He refuses to accept it. When Cain’s offering was rejected, he was so devastated that he murdered his younger brother (Genesis 4:3-5). On the other hand, when Solomon’s offering was accepted, he received a divine visitation (2 Chronicles 1:6-12). Let me share what I normally do during offering time with you. When the minister says we should lift up our offering to God and pray, l asks God to send down His fire and take up the offering to Himself. So before I drop the offering in the basket, it is already gone. The cheque may be in the basket, but the actual offering has been taken by fire to Heaven. I pray that from today, God will accept all your offerings and sacrifices to Him!
Prayer Point: Father, I offer myself as a living sacrifice to You. Accept me and release Your holy fire on me. Fulfil Your promise by expediting the answer to my prayers and cause my joy to be full.
Open Heavens Daily Devotional guide was written by Pastor E.A. Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, one of the largest evangelical church in the world and also the President of Christ the Redeemer’s Ministries.