THE BOILING POT
In part one of this article, we explained what the sea stands for in the life of a believer and we also saw why the devil is also interested in it. Finally, we mentioned that the sea can sometimes become very threatening and we said this is what it means when we say that the sea is boiling like a pot. In this part, we would be looking at the boiling pot more closely.
Indeed, there are situations where the sea becomes extremely violent and threatening. These are situations where the proud waves rise to heaven and even the strongest believer is threatened. Please note that the sea is naturally in constant distress but there are times when the distress becomes alarming. These are times when the battle before the believer is about to swallow him up and he is so scared that he can't even concentrate in prayer. This is a situation in which the temptation becomes so great that the Christian begins to consider the option of compromise. This is when God's child finds himself in the midst of the troubles of life and he look in all direction but there seem to be no hope of finding any relief. This is when his only means of livelihood is about to be taken away because of the truth he believes in. When these things begin to happen, then we can say that the sea is beginning to boil like a pot. The disciples faced a similar situation one day as they were ferrying on the boat with Jesus. The bible told us that though Jesus, the Lord was in the boat with them, yet they were already thinking of death when they saw the boisterous waves. When the sea begins to boil like a pot, the believer may forget that Jesus is still in the boat of his life.
But why does the sea boil like a pot? The bible tells us that this it is the work of the Leviathan, the sea monster who is a figure representing Satan, the believers' adversary. Job 42:31 says that he (the Leviathan) makes the deep to boil like a pot: he makes the sea like a pot of ointment. What an evil creature the devil had been even since the time of the beginning! Of course we know that the reason why he does this is because he wants to aggravate, heighten or intensify the natural conflicts of life to the point where he can quench the believers light, steal his faith, drag him into sin, stop him from carrying out a divine order, pitch him against a fellow believer, cause him to relent in his good works, discourage him, steal his joy, attack him spiritually, frustrate his God given vision, plant an evil seed into his life and the list is endless. Please note that it was not the devil that created the night and sea of conflicts- God made them and has a good purpose in mind for creating them. But the devil sees an opportunity to manipulate and use them for his evil purposes.
What is it that would make one who was once a Spirit filled Christian to cry out in pain and distress accusing God and the brethren for his misfortunes? It is the boiling pot. What would make a man once known for righteousness to succumb suddenly to the lure of sin? It is nothing but the boiling pot. It is time for believers to stop throwing blames and begin to pray for one another. That evil pot must be broken by the power of the Holy Spirit; the instrument of witchcraft must be destroyed. This wickedness of the devil must hence forth be prevented in the church of God. How can a young sister who used to be full of joy and vibrant in the Lord suddenly become so depressed and cold to the point that she is now contemplating suicide. This is a wicked plot from hell and must be reversed by fervent prayer. How can a Christian brother be so drawn into lust that he leaves his house to go and visit a harlot. He pauses at the entrance of the brothel and feels very ashamed of himself but he still goes in anyway. This is the work of the boiling pot; it is indeed witchcraft, an acute attack from the father of all witches himself! What is it that will make a believer to give up on his marriage without any biblical reason? The waves become so overwhelming that there seem to be no other solution than to go against God's injunction. This is a boiling pot of marital distress. What is it that will make a Christian brother to become so disappointed with himself and with others that he withdraws from the church and the brethren? What is it that will make a redeemed of the Lord so desperate for help that he goes on to use worldly and unholy means? All these people saw evil but were unable to silence it. They are people who have come under the influence of the boiling pot. This boiling pot we are talking about can come with different contents. It may be the boiling pot of discouragement, anger, fear, sickness, debt, lust, persecution but whatever it is, the believer must learn to smash that pot of darkness in pieces.
No man is exempted from the challenge of the boiling pot. This is a serious matter that determines the fate of all believers. If a Christian is unable to overcome the challenge of the boiling pot in whatever form the devil brings it to him, he cannot inherit the kingdom of God. The boiling pot is the arrow of darkness fired into the heart in the course of living in this sinful world and the primary purpose is to cause the believer to fall. Nothing corrupts faith or halt spiritual progress like a boiling pot.
Most Christians have knowledge of the word of God and what His will is concerning holiness. When the waves of the sea are gentle and the wind is not extraordinary, they are able to silence those lures of sin and maintain their stand as Christians. However when the sea of temptation begins to boil like a pot, many can no longer remember what the bible says. A man lives among provocative men and has been doing well to control his anger and bridle his tongue, but a day comes when the provocation becomes almost unbearable and he throws caution to the wind. Another believer may have been saved from the lust of the flesh and has been doing well to resist temptation for some time, but a day comes when the temptation seems like an unquenchable fire burning in his flesh and before you know it, he has fallen. Another man's besetting sin may be depression, fear, pride, lies or worldliness. Everyman has a weakness in his fallen nature and the devil always seeks to use these weaknesses to bring them down. All men have an enemy of righteousness in them called self but God will not allow the slightest trace of this entity in His kingdom. When the sea begins to boil like a pot, none among men is able to curtail self. The only man that can survive when under the attack of a boiling pot is the man in whom self itself no longer exist i.e. the man who is dead to self. That is why 'true religion' is not an option but a command to all who wants to see God.
The fearful thing about God is His holiness. God will not allow the slightest sin in His kingdom. This is why man has to begin to take the issue of the boiling pot, that stains the garment of righteousness, more seriously and begin to deal with entity called self. We cannot afford to allow ourselves to be caught unawares for the devil is ever lurking around seeking to destroy.
Unfortunately, this generation has thrown away the only solution that exists for the problem of the boiling pot. Man is now indulging self instead of crucifying it. Of course, giving one's life to Jesus or being born-again is not the solution. In fact, the boiling pot is actually targeted at believers. We are not talking about unbelievers here; rather we are talking about the fate of believers in this world. How many are walking in holiness? How many are there whose robes are not stained? The bitter truth is that all men are sure to fail under this weapon of the devil. No man is able to withstand this evil for long. The only solution to the problem of the boiling pot is 'true religion'.
What then is true religion? True religion is THE DAILY SACRIFICE; it is the DAILY OUTPOURING OF THE SOUL. It is THE ACCEPTABLE FAST and THE DAILY RENDING OF THE HEART. True religion is the DAILY WASHING and CRUCIFIXION OF SELF. True religion is painful but of eternal reward. True religion is THE WIDOW'S CONTINUOUS CRY; it is what Christ calls FAITH. True religion is THE SONG OF MARY; it is THE DISJOINTED THIGH OF JACOB. True religion is THE SELFLESS CRY OF BLIND BARTIMAEUS and THE DESPERATE CALL OF PETER while walking on the sea. True religion is A DIVINE EXCHANGE; it is likened to a man who finds a great treasure in a field and thereafter sells everything he has and uses the proceeds to buy the field. True religion is THE KINGDOM OF GOD ON EARTH. True religion means GIVING UP EVERYTHING in order to receive all things. True religion is indeed painful; it means LYING ON THE ALTAR OF SACRIFICE WITHOUT STRUGGLING as Christ did and ALLOWING THE FATHER HIMSELF TO SLAY US. True religion means COUNTING EVERY GAIN IN THIS WORLD A LOSS for the sake of winning Christ. It means TOTAL SURRENDER; it is THE END OF SELF. It is the DAILY ABHORRING OF ONE'S SOUL for the sake of Christ. It means HIDING NOTHING and EXHIBITING ZERO RESISTANCE as the word of God pries into the deepest recesses of our souls and searching out the most hidden secrets of the heart. True religion means ALLOWING GOD TO CHANGE US. No man has ever made it through the pearl gates of Heaven without true religion and none ever will. This is why I am afraid for this proud generation!
I want you to pray these prayers.
1. Let every boiling pot of . (Put in any relevant item e.g. fear, worry, lust, anger, pride etc) fashioned against my spiritual progress break, in Jesus' name.
2. Lord, search my heart; let your Holy Spirit pry into the deepest secrets therein and uncover all my unrighteousness, guilt, fear and pride. Lord, have mercy on me and cleanse me again and again.
3. O Lord, break me, save me from my pride and everything in me that makes me proud of myself.
4. Lord pierce me with Your spiritual cutting implements, set me ablaze upon the altar of sacrifice and destroy the self in me until all that I have left is You.
5. O Lord, I confess that only You can heal all my souls diseases (arising from my fallen nature) by the daily washing. Have mercy on me and wash me again today. Take away more of me and give me more of You.
6. Lord consider all my secret thoughts; weigh my motives and lead me into all Your truth.
7. Lord, make my heart to always be at peace trusting in You alone. In Jesus' name.
These types of prayer are the prayers of any true Israelite. The attitude portrayed in them are even more important than the words of the prayer- they must be the attitude of every believer as he comes to God in fellowship and as he lives in and relates with the world. This is why Jesus seemed to be more concerned about preaching to the Jews than to any other national (Matthew 10:6). This is because true religion belongs to the Jews, although many of them lacked understanding of its purpose. The Jewish priests were humbled and weakened by the rigor of having to come again and again for the daily sacrifice and all Israel with them groaned in anticipation of the coming of the Messiah which is Christ. This is the essence of daily sacrifice- it is meant to kill the flesh. But it was ineffective during the Old Testament because God wanted it to be a spiritual exercise rather than physical. David the king however saw beyond the religious rites that were being performed in his days and he presented himself everyday on a spiritual altar to be screened, slain and purified by God Himself. When Jesus came, He put an end to the Old Testament physical process of daily sacrifice and replaced it with the spiritual one- the type that David practiced. No wonder that the bible refers to Jesus as the Son of David (Matthew 1:1). This is because He came to establish the thrown of David and the act of daily spiritual sacrifice of self on God's altar of sacrifice. If we read through the books of Psalms, we would see many songs and prayers that look like the ones written above. These words are contrary to what the god of science preaches today and those who worship him will surely want to resist. However, the lost Jews among them will be quick to understand and return to the temple of daily sacrifice.
The children of Israel of the Old Testament brought lambs as the sacrifice but we must present our bodies as the living sacrifice (Romans 12:1). This means our bodies must be something that can burn if it must be accepted on God's altar. Nothing must be included that cannot burn; nothing must be hidden that we are not willing to allow God to burn. All must be laid down on that altar of sacrifice- everything that we have and everything that we are. But millions of souls have brought an abomination into the temple; they lay on the altar a strange beast that none of our fathers knew about. What a sacrilege! They have brought in a detestable thing into the holy temple and have placed indestructible incombustible flesh on God's altar.
Everything the prophecy says is coming to past. That proud monster has indeed invaded the temple of God; the end time beast has arrived at last, and he has chased the priests out of the temple of sacrifice. In his arrogance, he commanded that the evening sacrifice be stopped. More painful and disheartening is the fact that he has placed the abominable thing, which Daniel prophesied about, on the altar of sacrifice. The abomination that causes desolation lies still in God's sanctuary (Daniel 11:31-45). In place of flesh, the beast has placed a detestable item which does not burn on the altar of burnt offering. This son of pride- the vile creature that emerged from the bowels of science has eventually put an end to true religion and the road to heaven is closed to countless multitudes. Man is in the most perilous days of all time. Hell's mouth is opened wide but the true word of God that breaks down the flesh; searches out the secrets of the heart and purifies the conscience, is so scarce. The prophet has gone blind and a whole nation has lost her way. The sons of Jacob have gone lusting after the god of science and forces- a god that none of their fathers worshiped. What a terrible sight! Millions of men of all ages; from all races and works of life are trooping into hell undisturbed, each of them bearing the mark of the beast on their foreheads, on their hands, or on both.
Hope you have not forgotten what led us to the issue of true religion and the daily sacrifice. No man has an answer to the problem of the boiling pot except the man that practices true religion. However, many are being deceived; they think they are alright even without the daily sacrifice and even with all the pride and self in them. Some in the house of God have even become so blind that they do not realize how much of self is still in their lives. This is because they are under the influence of a more deadly weapon than the boiling pot. The effect of this weapon on believers brings to the fore the greatest form of wickedness I have ever seen on earth. As powerful as the boiling pot is, it is only a means to an end in the hands of the devil. After failing under the influence of the boiling pot, the believer is further influenced by more deadly weapon- the hoary deep.
Tunji Abiona is a Christian writer whose mandate is to call believers' attention back to the path of true religion as laid down by our Lord Jesus Christ. He lives in Nigeria and fellowships with The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG).
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