Open Heavens Devotional by Pastor E.A. Adeboye
MEMORIZE: “What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:” (Rom.9 :22)
READ: Romans 9:17-24
Romans 9:11-14 says God is not unrighteous in His dealings with man. Being the All-knowing God, He knows how every individual, family, society or nation will respond to Him even before they were created. Based on His foreknowledge, He makes His decisions. Nevertheless, He gives everyone the opportunity to decide and determine his or her destiny. Now, whether such a destiny tallies with God’s original plan or not is totally different matter.
“For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth ” (Romans 9:17). How can God create Pharaoh just to drown him? Romans 9:20-21 calls God the Great potter. Psalm 115:3 says He is the sovereign God who does whatsoever He pleases. Romans 9:22-24, on the other hand, says God has both honourable and dishonourable vessels. That means if you refuse to be an honourable vessel in His hands, He will use you as dishonourable vessel and still punish you at the end. Before He created Pharaoh, He could see him going off in his self-will; He could see him fighting against His divine will. With this knowledge, God decided to use him as an example to other world leaders who will tow the path of disobedience.
Yet, the crucial questions are: Did God give Pharaoh any opportunity to obey Him? Or, did God destroy him without any opportunity to stave off divine judgement? If you take a close look at God’s dealings with Pharaoh in Exodus Chapters 7-12, you will observe that God requested the release of His children from Egypt, and then promised to judge the land should Pharaoh disobey His orders. If Pharaoh had complied with the divine requests at that time, both himself and Egypt would not have been judged. But because he was stubborn and wanted to defy God, God hardened his heart; his defiance destroyed him. Everyone on earth will determine his or her end by their actions and response to God. Are you a vessel unto honour or dishonour? If you keep resisting God, it will get to a time God will help you resist Him to your destruction. Be wise today!
Pray that all your loved ones at home and abroad who are resisting God, will have a change of mind before it is too late.
Bible in One year: 1 Cor. 10-12