Try to live perfect lives!
HOW ARE WE TREATING the house of God today? That is, the physical house where we meet and reverence God. Also, how are we treating our spiritual temples – our bodies? Are we using them for the glory of God?
These were a few of the questions posed by Reverend Arlene Waterman during an interactive teaching session at Bethesda Methodist Church, Hope Road, St Lucy, last Sunday morning.
During an anointed service, complete with communion and heart-warming singing by the choir, Waterman forsook her usual preaching style to give members of the congregation a chance to make their input.
She shared on the similarities between Jeremiah of the Old Testament and Jesus Christ in the New Testament.
Waterman said both condemned the way the physical temple of God was being used. She also spoke about their priestly heritage and the fact that they both had a strong message to deliver to the people of their day.
In addition, according to her, they were both conscious of their call to preach and both prophesied about the destruction of the temple – Jeremiah in Chapter 34:2 and Jesus in Matthew 24:2.
The Methodist minister further stressed that both experienced persecution, numerous trials, and were rejected by their friends and family. (Jeremiah 12:6 and Luke 4:16-24).
She questioned her audience on how responsive they were to those who preached the Word and asked: “Do we accept the messages others bring to us or do we refer to what we know of their past?”
In asking this, she urged her listeners to “aim to live perfect lives” before God and man.
“We must be able to look back at our lives and say, ‘This is where God brought me from.’ None of us should be at the same level we were ten or 15 years ago. We should be in a position to rebuke, pluck up and tear down.
“Do not turn your eyes to what is wrong. Witness wherever you go. You can witness by not taking out The Bible. Do little things that make a difference in the lives of others.”
She reminded the congregation that as followers of God they “will be persecuted” in some way.
“Both Jeremiah and Jesus knew what it was like to be rejected, persecuted and mocked by their enemies. Jesus even told his disciples to expect mockery,” she said.
Waterman further noted that Jesus and Jeremiah were compassionate, viewed as traitors by the people, opposed by false prophets, wrongfully accused, wept, and both wanted justice towards their enemies.
She stressed, however, that while Jeremiah wanted justice and punishment for those who ridiculed him, Jesus wanted justice in the form of forgiveness.
She concluded that despite the similarities between the two, Jeremiah was weak in the faith while Jesus chose to be replenished by God through prayer.
Waterman admonished her listeners to pray daily, pattern their lives after Christ, and have strong faith in God.
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