CHARACTER STUDY: PAUL 7

KEY SCRIPTURE: Acts 13:2. “As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.”

  Paul and Barnabas returned from Jerusalem to Antioch where they joined the brethren in a time of prayer, fasting and ministering unto the Lord.

   The scripture said they ministered to the Lord and fasted. The word ministered means to serve. To serve or minister in this context was to offer the fruit of your lips which is praising and giving thanks unto the name of the Lord. Hebrews 13:15 “By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually That is the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.” Whenever we sing or express words of thanksgiving, it is a form of service we are rendering unto the Lord. Do not take it lightly it is the delight of the Lord that we minister unto Him. May you continue to offer the fruit of the lips unto the Lord always.

     Along praising and giving thanks unto the Lord they fasted. Fasting is an abstinence from food and pleasure in order to devote time for God in prayer and meditation on His word. Fasting strengthens one’s desire for the Lord. Fasting is not an optional   Christian discipline but an obligatory one. The Lord said in Matthew 6:16 “Moreover when ye fast…….” It is proper every Christian set up specific times or days to fast, pray and minister unto the Lord.

 As they fasted, the Holy Spirit said separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. “The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force. He is an active person who has will, choice and instincts. He said Paul and Barnabas should be separated unto him. It is only God who demands our dedication to Him. This makes Him one with God. He is God. The Holy Spirit is our helper, guard and guide. We can only be successful if we would recognise that he is Lord of the work. We must continually seek his guidance. Failure in ministry is serving without his assistance in leading. As many as are led by the Spirit they are the sons of God.

 Pastor Benny Hinn described the Holy Spirit as   Jesus Christ unlimited. When the Lord was on the earth, He was confined to a body and located in one place at a time.

 The Holy Spirit can be everywhere at any time working through anyone who gives him the right to lead and guide him. Through the Holy Spirit the Lord Jesus is presently unlimited, alive in every child of God and ready to do what He did when He was physically present on the earth. Cooperate with Him for an effective life and ministry

PRAYER

I thank you heavenly Father for giving us the Holy Spirit, our helper, advocate, counselor, comforter and guide. Through His leading I am never found wanting, always a success in all I do.

FURTHER STUDIES

Psalms 27:6 “And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore, will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.”

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

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