THIRD SUNDAY IN ADVENT
December 17, 2017
SUB-THEME/8: PRESERVING THE HEALING OVER THE LAND.
TOPIC: Devoted Life.
TEXT: II Chron. 31:1-6, 20-21; 29:12-19; Ezra 7:7-10; Acts 2:41-46.
i) understand the meaning of devotion, holiness and commitment;
ii) appreciate the effects of personal devotion on national life;
iii) realize the level of devotion, holiness and commitment of Christians today.
Here, we will be looking at a life of holiness and commitment to God and one another. Most revivals began through the initial devotion and commitment of an individual or a small group of people seeking the face of God and a subsequent yielding to God. Devotion is ardent, often selfless affection and the dedication, to a person or principle; holiness refers to the separation of a person, thing or place to God; commitment is state of being emotionally or intellectually devoted to a belief, a course of action or another person. These are seen most times in the willingness of the people to spend their lives, time and resources in selflessly serving God who had mercy on them. This study looks at how critical these are to sustaining a revival.
1. How would you explain the terms devotion, holiness and commitment? (Discuss the object of each as well.) II Chron. 31:1-6; Ezra 7:10.
2. From the passages identify the characters whose devotion, commitment and holiness affected their nation? Describe how they each contributed to preserving the healing (revival) in their land?
3. How would you rate the level of devotion, holiness and commitment in the Nigerian church today? What indices did you use in your assessment? Cf. Psa. 15.
4. What factors do you think contribute to the low level of devotion, holiness and commitment in the Church today? How can we overcome these factors as a church? I John 2:15; James 4:4.
5. Read Acts 2:41-46 and 4:23-35 and identify what lessons we can learn from the early disciples in preserving the healing (revival) over the land.
If Christians go to sleep after a revival, the evil one will certainly sow tares among them. Indeed, a continuing devoted life of holiness and commitment is what God expects of His Church. We should keep the flames of revival burning in the same way God desires a lamp on the altar burning always in the Temple.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
It takes less to preserve than spark off a revival.