So, what if you are offering your gift at the altar and remember that someone has something against you? Leave your gift there and go make peace with that person. Then come and offer your gift. If anyone wants to take you to court, make friends with them quickly. Try to do that before you get to the court. If you don’t, they might hand you over to the judge. And the judge will hand you over to a guard, who will throw you into jail. (ERV)
Many believers want Jesus to come because of the troubles of life. But we want Him to come as a fulfilment of the age-long prophecy. He’s coming for a church that is a picture of Himself. He’s coming for church that is living in faith and in love. Walking in love is walking with God. It doesn’t matter how old or young you are, you can cultivate a walk with God.
Enoch started to walk with God at 65. Enoch was taken away because the world of his time didn’t deserve a man like him. God always fellowshipped with man in the Garden of Eden before the Fall. This is because God created people for fellowship. Angels were made to serve but people were made for friendship.
Our model in walking in love is God Himself. After the Fall, God looked for a friend that was lost. God began to look for man whom He trusted. This is because Adam betrayed the trust God reposed in him, Ironically, Adam didn’t apologize to God. To show the love He had for man, God killed an animal and made them clothes and sent them away; not as a punishment but because He didn’t want them to eat from the Tree of Life and lived in sin forever.
God didn’t stop at that; He sent His only begotten Son to die in order to wipe away the offence completely. It should be noted that man’s offence against God was a deliberate act because he was told beforehand. Ironically, it was the offended who sought reconciliation. This is exactly what Jesus teaches in Matthew 5:23–25:
Many times, we want the offender to come and apologise to us before we can forgive them but God’s standard is the very opposite. To walk in love, we must be ready to forgive one another. In Matthew18:15-17, Jesus gives us a practical way of dealing with offence when He said that we must confront the offender in love privately. Arguably, God is more interested in relationship than any other thing.
Prophetic Word: “When there’s no communication, offence brews.”
*This message was preached by Pastor Toni Ogobegwu on December 4, 2005.