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OPEN HEAVENS 2021 MARCH 22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31 Daily Devotional
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Monday March 22
TOPIC: SIGNS OF BACKSLIDING I
Memorise: Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Psalm 51:12
Read: 2 Corinthians 13:5-8
It is possible that even after being born again for a number of years, a person could backslide and not even notice.
There are many people who attend Church regularly actually belong in the camp of the devil. The devil Dont hinder this category Of people from going to Church because he knows that if he does, the brethren will follow them up and snatch them from him. Hence, this set of People would appear to still be standing in faith, whereas they had long fallen. what are some of the signs that would show if you are already backsliding?
The first sign of backsliding is the sudden realisation that the joy of salvation you once had is gone. lf you can remember those early days when you just became born again, how you used to bubble with joy, and somehow, that joy is no longer there, check your faith. David said in Psalm 51:12:
Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
David had clearly lost the joy he once felt when he was still standing. If you go back to the sins you’ve forsaken, you would lose the joy of your salvation and sorrow will come. Have you lost the joy of your salvation? Do you still sing and radiate the same joy you once felt when you got born again
Hebrews 1:9 says: Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.
There is a link between righteousness and joy. The moment iniquity comes into your life, joy leaves and sorrow takes over. if you have noticed the absence of joy in your life, check your salvation.
Another sign of backsliding is the departure of peace from the life of a believer. One of the first things people experience when they give their lives to Christ is peace.
Philippians 4:7 calls it the peace of God that passes all understanding. Even if the sea roars, the storm rages and the people round you are trembling, you will have peace like a river as long as you remain connected to the prince of peace. However, the moment you begin to backslide this divine peace departs even when everything looks alright around you.
Remember, there is no peace for the wicked (Isaiah 48:22)
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn 2: Amazing Grace! How Sweet The sound
Action point: Do you still feel the same peace and joy you did when you became born again? if not, Cry to God for restoration now
Bible in one year: Romans 8-10
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Tuesday March 23
TOPIC: SIGNS OF BACKSLIDING II
Memorise: Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8
Read: Matthew 7:17-18
A major sign of backsliding is when your mind is constantly filled with immoral thoughts. A backsliding believer have all manner of sinful thoughts flow through his or her mind. When David backslide, he cried to God for restoration, saying: Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10
His heart had become dirty. He discovered that immoral thoughts now filled his heart. when you begin to harbor immoral thoughts or suddenly become comfortable i revealing clothes, it is a sign that your heart is far from God.
In the past, nobody would need to point out a harlot or a thug they would be easily identified from their dressing These days, we have professing Christians who dress like harlots and thugs.
When a person backslides, all of a sudden, God seems to be very far from the fellow. Don’t blame Him; His word says: Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. James 4:8
When you are no longer intimate with God, what do you expect Him to do? David cried in Psalm 51:11: Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. When Jesus bore the sins of the world on the cross, He had to cry out
…My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me Mark 15:34
God moved away because He cannot behold sin (Habakkuk 12:15) and He would also depart from any believer who harbours iniquity.
The Holy Spirit cannot stay with someone who is frolicking with sin; He is the Holy Spirit, not an unholy spirit. When you stop reading your Bible daily, you stop praying, you stop witnessing, you reduce your attendance of fellowship, you are drawing far from God. This is the beginning Backsliding and it won’t be long before sin creeps in.
Are any of these signs of backsliding evident in your life? Address them today.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn: Conquerors And Overcomers Now Are We
prayer point: Father, whatever is drawing me Far from You, please remove it from my life today. if am holding on to it too much, remove it by force, in the mighty name of Jesus.
bible in one year: Romans 11-13
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Wednesday March 24
TOPIC: SIGNS OF BACKSLIDING III
Memorise: And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he said, lt is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good. 1 Samuel 3:18
Read: 1 Samuel 3:10-18
When discover it is difficult for you to pray, you are already backsliding. one of the most distressing passages I have ever read in the Bible is 1 Samuel 3:10-18. God wanted to wipe out the house of Eli; He bypassed Eli to tell Samuel. That is one sign that Eli was hardly praying anymore, because if he were, God would have told him instead. When someone who used to hear from God no longer hears from Him, that may be a sign that he has started backsliding. Samuel told Eli what God said and Eli replied “He is the Lord; let Him do as He pleases. That statement is distressing because I would have expected Eli to go on his knees and cry to God tor mercy.
According to the elders, it is a goat that would hear about the day of his death and keep on eating. Eli heard that God was going to cut off his lineage and all he had to say was”He is God, let Him do whatever He pleases”. That’s similar to the goat’s attitude described above. Jesus Christ is the Great Shepherd of sheep and not goats. Any sheep that begins to behave like a goat has left the flock of Christ.
When a Christian gets bored after praying for five minutes, there is definitely something wrong. You will always enjoy Spending time alone with someone you love. If you still love Jesus, one hour to fellowship with Him will not seem like punishment. How is it that prayer has now become a burden?
There was a period in my life where I had drawn far from God without noticing it. One day, God asked “Do you remember when you would be driving and praising Me?
Then My Spirit would fill your car so strongly that tears would begin to run down your face and you would have to park the car for a while before continuing on your journey? I said”Yes Lord, I remember, but You know it is difficult now. I have a driver now and if he sees tears dropping from my eyes, he would think there is something wrong with me. God replied “Oh, So I made a mistake by giving you a driver, right? I quickly apologized and promised to resume fellowship with Him. I waited until it was midnight when everyone, including my wife was asleep, then snuck out of the house to fellowship alone with God. Just as I started singing, tears fell from my eyes. I did not realise how much I had missed God. I did not realise how far I had drifted away from Him.
How fervent is your prayer life? Your response would tell if you have started drifting away from God.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn 24: Take My Life, And Let It Be
Reflection: Do you still enjoy spending time alone with God?
Bible in one year: Romans 14-16
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Thursday March 25
TOPIC: SIGNS OF BACKSLIDING IV
Memorise: The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. Proverbs 11:30
Read: John 15:4-5
Then willI teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee. Psalm 51:13
We are focusing on Psalm 51 today because it is the prayer of David after he backslid. it is the Sincere prayer of a backslider asking for restoration. In the bible passage quoted above David said that if God should restore him, he would teach sinners His way. This shows that he had not been witnessing during the period in which he had fallen. when you find out that you are reluctant to win souls, you are already backsliding. Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness. O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise. Psalm 51:14-15
Another sign of backsliding is when praising God becomes a casual thing to a believer. David said in the passage above that if God restored him, he would praise Him. This is somebody who the Bible says used to dance with all his might for God, but because he had fallen into sin, even singing became a problem.
You can’t deceive God. When was the last time you worshipped God from the depth of your heart? Check your salvation, is it still intact? Is your fire still burning bright? Are you as hot as you used to be or are you becoming lukewarm? Are you sleeping when you are supposed to be at the warfront for the Lord Jesus Christ? Answer these questions honestly within yourself.
I cried to God when I read about how David was relaxing at the time when kings go to war (2 Samuel 11:1-4). This is the man that said “if nobody will fight Goliath, I will go”. Each time I read of how he slept when he should have been at war, I Cry “Father, don’t let my case be like this”. Ask yourself, when was the last time you won a soul for God? When was the last time you were willing to go out into territories no one would want to go to, preaching the gospel and not caring for your life? Are you sure that you are not sleeping when a war is going on
The devil is waging a war to snatch your soul from the Lord. (1 Peter 5:8); wake up from your slumber and return to your love.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn 21: Rock Of Ages, Cleft For Me
Prayer Point: Father, help me to be vigilant at all times and to be passionate about winning souls for Your kingdom in the mighty name of Jesus.
Bible in one year: Numbers 1-2
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Friday March 26
TOPIC: TRICKS; NOT POWER
Memorise: And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Colossians 2:15
Read: Hebrews 2:14-15
God hath spoken once; twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God. Psalm 62:11
The above passage says that power belongs to God, not the devil. Many people erroneously believe that the devil is powerful. There is no greater lie than that. Jesus Christ said: .. All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Matthew 28:18
if all power belongs to Jesus, then no power is left for the devil; he is completely powerless. What the Bible says that we should be aware of are the wiles and devices of the devil (Ephesians 6:11, 2 Corinthians 2:11). He has no power at all, he is merely a trickster.
The devil is cunning and this makes him dangerous so you must be careful not to fall into his trap. You must however not ascribe to the devil what he does not possess; all power belongs to my Daddy, the Almighty God. Like any good magician, the devil has mastered how to use certain elements, including human psychology, to make his tricks look real. He knows how to use different elements to make things up in order to look powerful, but he has no power. The reason the devil does things to deceive people is so that they can fear him. He will begin to whisper different things just to plant fear in your heart because he knows that the moment fear enters a person, faith is gone and you need faith to move mountains.
If you are a friend of God, constantly seated with Him, you will be above all the tricks of the devil. It is only those who still live in sin that can be afraid of His tricks.
Ephesians 1:21 says that Jesus is: Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
Always remember, all power belongs to Jesus. All the devil has are mere tricks.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 hymn 7: Have You Been To Jesus
Key Point: Jesus has all the power; the devil only has tricks. Don’t fooled.
Bible in one year: Numbers 3-4
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Saturday March 27
TOPIC: EVIL FOR EVIL SHOW LOVE ALWAYS
Memorise: See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. Thessalonians 5:15
Read: Matthew 5:43-47
When you find a professing Christian who pays evil with evil, you have found a pretender. Real even to their children of God radiate love, even to their enemies. In fact, Jesus said that is how you would know the difference between a child or God and an unbeliever.
For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only what do ye more than others do not even the publicans so? Matthew 5:46-47 Forgive everyone who hurts you, be it your spouse, colleague, boss, pastor or children. Never pay evil with evil; forgive.
God says you should not repay evil with evil because He is concerned about the state of your heart. Matthew 7:17-18 says only evil trees can produce evil fruits while good trees produce only good fruits. When you repay evil with evil, you are bearing evil fruits and that means the devil now has a place in you. Since light and darkness cannot co-exist, then it means the Lord has no place in you anymore. God forbid. So, how should a Christian respond to someone who has done evil to him or her?
If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink: For thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the LORD shall reward thee. Proverbs 25:21-22
the Bible passage quoted above says you should respond to evil by showing love. The more love you show the person hurting you, the more trouble you are causing the person if he or she doesn’t change for good. Bible says you are heaping coals of fire on such a persons head. On the other hand, God will reward you for showing love to your enemies. Just as a part of our topic today was cancelled, cancel any idea of repaying evil with evil from your mind permanently.
Always show love.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn 28: What A Friend We Have In Jesus
prayer point: Father give me the grace to show love even to my enemies in Jesus name.
Bible in one year: Numbers 5-6
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Sunday March 28
TOPIC: REJOICE EVERMORE
Memorise: Rejoice evermore. 1Thessalonians 5:16
Read: Nehemiah 8:9-10
Discouragement is one major weapon the devil uses to ruin people’s destinies. A fellow that is discouraged cannot have the strength to move on.
Our memory verse for today says you should rejoice forever because when you let sadness into your life, it will hinder the achievement of your goals in life. The joy of the Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10) and you will need it in order to fulfil destiny.
Elijah was a great man with a great destiny to fulfil. He was going very strong until the day discouragement set in. He became so discouraged that he asked God to take his life (1 Kings 19:4). After he made that request, God sent an angel to feed him. Then the Bible says: And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee. 1 Kings 19:7
The journey had become too tough for Elijah because he had become discouraged. He had lost his joy. May you never lose your joy in Jesus’ name.
In our Bible reading for today, we see Nehemiah encouraging the people after he saw them weeping because he knew that without the strength that comes from the joy of the Lord, they would not be able to build the wall.
A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones. Proverbs 17:22
You may have many worries and problems that make it difficult for you to rejoice, but the Bible says that a broken spirit will dry your bones. Being worried cannot add a cubit to your stature (Matthew 6:27), neither can it solve any problem; it can only dry your bones. A fellow who is always gloomy is merely giving negative energy to his or her body system and will often fall sick, but a person who rejoices always will live a long and healthy life.
Choose the joy of the Lord today and receive strength for the journey ahead.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn 3: Be Glad In The Lord And Rejoice
Action Point: Cast all your cares on Jesus today and rejoice, singing and dancing as you go through the day
Bible in one year: Numbers 7-8
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Monday March 29
TOPIC: PRAY WITHOUT CEASING
Memorise: Pray without ceasing. 1 Thessalonians 5:17
Read: James 5:16-18
Imagine a country that has nuclear weapons being threatened by another country without any, yet the former is the one trembling. That is what happens when situations of life cause Christians to tremble. You have the nuclear weapon of prayers at your disposal, so why fear the circumstances of this life? The Lord Jesus Christ Himself said:
If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. John 14:14
He said in James 4:2-3 that you have not, because you ask not. Are you currently facing any challenger Get on your knees in prayer. Prayer is far more potent than many people take it to be. I have seen prayers bring about unimaginable miracles. Use it and use it judiciously.
When you pray without ceasing, before obstacles arise, you already have a bulldozer waiting to crush them. Anyone who wants to fulfil the plan of God for his or her life cannot be waiting for obstacles to arise Before they pray; they pray without ceasing.
Several years ago, I recall telling Pastors to continue fasting and praying after we had just concluded a special programme in The Redeemed Christian Church of God. They obeyed even though it seemed unnecessary to them. Before long a government official announced that they wanted to clear off the Redemption Camp. Since the obstacle met us praying it got out of the way in no time.
Prayer is my lifestyle. I pray without ceasing, so when obstacles arise, there is a bulldozer waiting to clear them off. You may ask “How can I pray without ceasing when I have to go to work and do other things during the day? Besides won’t i run out of prayer points? The answer is simple pray in tongues. When you pray in tongues all the time, you don’t need prayer points the Holy Spirit puts the prayer points in your mouth (Romans 8:26).
While you are walking, pray. When driving pray, in u toilet, pray. Wherever you are, even if you cannot speak loudly, just keep mumbling the tongues under your breath
Don’t stop praying, your miracles are on the way.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 hymn 18: Pass Me Not, O Gentle Saviour
Key Point: Don’t wait for obstacle before you pray: pray without ceasing
Bible in one year: Numbers 9-11
Tuesday March 30
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 TOPIC: DO NOT DESPISE PROPHECIES I
Memorise: Despise not prophesyings. 1 Thessalonians 5:20
Read: Amos 3:6-8
When a prophesy Comes mean a genuine prophecy, it is because the person prophesying has received some insight into the future. God may give a person a prophesy directly or through someone else; whichever the case, He always has a reason for revealing the future. However, if the person despises the prophesy, he or she may never see its fulfilment. God sends us prophecies for different reasons. Sometimes, it is merely for our information; however, there are times when we are required to act on it.
Sometime ago, there were two major candidates running for the office of the President in Nigeria and both were Muslims. During a meeting of the Nigerian Pentecostal Preachers, the matter was raised as to who we should encourage Christians in Nigeria to vote for. When asked for my opinion, I said “God has already told me the result of the election. God said the fellow who will win the election will be the loser and the one who will lose the election will be the winner. So, I didn’t bother my members as to who to vote for and when things eventually began to play out in the country, I was relaxed because I already had the information ahead of time.
However, for some other prophecies, God requires that you act on them. Sometimes He reveals the plans of the devil, and you need to pray to cancel them. There was a woman who relayed a dream in which her husband (who had just travelled) was brought back in a coffin. I asked if her husband was born again and she said yes’ so I prayed with her that the husband would not die. A few days later, I saw an obituary in the newspaper and the man who had died had the same surname as this sister. On enquiry, I discovered that it was another member of her husband’s family who had died; the fellow wasn’t born again. Death had planned to take her husband, God however exposed the plan in her dream, we prayed and the husband lived. Imagine if she had despised the warning from God. Is there anything God has told or shown you recently that you need to pray against? You had better pray today so as to destroy the plans of the enemy.
if you are a child of God and you do not hear from Him, ask Him to start speaking to you from today (1 Corinthians 12:31). However, if you are not yet His child, give your life to Him now so He can begin to speak to you also.
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Hymn 11: Need Thee EVry Hour
Prayer P’oint: Father, help me to always hear from You and to know what You would have me do in Jesus name.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Bible in one year: Numbers 12-13
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Wednesday March 31
TOPIC: DO NOT DESPISE PROPHECIES II
Memorise: wherefore the Lord God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the Lord saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed. 1 Samuel 2:30
Read: 1 Samuel 2:27-36
One reason the Lord may be telling you of a future event is so that you can do what is required for it to come to pass. For such prophecies, no matter how accurate they are, if you don’t play your part; they would not come to pass.
I heard a story about two friends who went to enquire about their future from the village chief priest. The priest told one that he would become a king while he told the other that he was destined to become a servant to his friend the future king. The former went home rejoicing and decided that all he had to do was wait to be crowned king. The latter however, determined that he was not going to end up a servant. He went deep into the forest-where he had access to hectares of land and decided to start a farm. This man worked hard; clearing, planting praying and God rewarded him with a bountiful harvest.
Years later, the village experienced a famine and the villagers came to him as the news of his bountiful harvest had spread all through the land. They said to the young man “Please give us food and we will make you our king”. He agreed and they made him the king. Later on, the other young man who the oracle had said would become king also came begging for food. He cried to him “Please king give me some food and I will be your servant.
The prophecy came: one did something about it while the other did nothing. Eventually, it was the one who acted wisely that was favoured. Beloved, it does not matter how great your destiny is, it does not matter how many great prophecies you have received concerning your future, if you are not ready to work, those prophecies will not come to pass. In Fact, the greater the prophecy, the greater the work that must be done. God did not show you that great future just so that you can relax. He showed you so that you can do what is required; don’t despise that.
Now, you may have been working hard towards that great destiny God has shown you, but it seems as though would never become a reality. Don’t worry, as long as you are sure that you are on the right path, everything will soon fall into place, in the mighty name of Jesus.
OPEN HEAVENS MARCH 2021 Hymn 12: In Christ Alone
Prayer point: Father, give me the grace to do all that is required for Your prophecies concerning me to come to pass, in the Jesus mighty name
bible in one year: 1 Thessalonians 1-5