WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DECEMBER 27, 2022
TOPIC: THE GREATEST GIFT GOD HAS EVER GIVEN
BY T. O. BANSO
“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32 New King James Version).
Proverbs 19:6 says many curry favor with a ruler, and everyone is the friend of a man who gives gifts. Generally, human beings love good gifts. The Bible talks about different kinds of gifts given by God. These include spiritual and physical. On the Day of Pentecost, God gave the church the gift of the Holy Spirit, which He had promised (Acts 2).
In Acts 2:38, Peter said, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (New King James Version). Acts 10:45b refers to the pouring out of the Holy Spirit on the Gentiles. The Holy Spirit is a good gift. Hebrews 2:4 also talks, among other things, about the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
The Bible says we should not be ignorant concerning spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 12:1). And as Paul said, in 1 verse 4, there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. This chapter talks extensively about spiritual gifts. 1 Corinthians 14:1 says to pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that we may prophesy. According to Romans 12:6, having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, we should use them: if prophecy, we should prophesy in proportion to our faith.
In addition to the gift of the Holy Spirit and spiritual gifts, God also gave the church ministry gifts. Ephesians 4:8-13 says, “‘When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men.’ (What does ‘he ascended’ mean except that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions? He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (New International Version).
These are wonderful gifts to the body of Christ. Romans 11:29 says the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. Nevertheless, all these gifts are not the greatest God has given to humankind. Apostles, prophets, evangelists, and pastors and teachers are invaluable gifts to the church but they’re not the greatest. Although we could be zealous for spiritual gifts as 1 Corinthians 14:12 says, we must, however, know that none of them is the greatest gift God has given to the world.
Matthew 7:7-8 says, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened” (New King James Version).
Verse 11 adds, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” New King James Version). Take note of the phrase “good things.” God gives His children good things. He grants our requests in prayer that agree with His will (1 John 5:14). Nevertheless, there is nothing good, physical or material, that God will give you that is the greatest gift.
The greatest gift God has given us is His Son, Jesus Christ. This became a reality on the first Christmas day. God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). The greatest gift God has given and will ever give anyone is the gift of His Son. And just as with any other gift, He can either be accepted or rejected. Have you accepted God’s Gift to you? Have you given your life to Jesus? Only those who do so will escape eternal damnation.
The greatest gift God has given you or will give you is not a house, car, promotion, healing, and so on. It is His Son. He has given Him already. The Bible refers to Him as His begotten Son (John 1:18; 3:16; 1 John 4:9). He is greater than the servants or prophets God sent earlier, who were maltreated or killed but He was crucified too (Matthew 21:34-39).
John 1:14 says, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth” (New King James Version). God has sent His only begotten Son; He gave Him as a gift to the world. “In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him” (1 John 4:9 New King James Version).
Nothing that God will ever give you will compare to the gift of His Son, which brought us salvation. “And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21 New King James Version).
Although God will give you good things in answer to your prayers, His greatest gift to you is His Son. “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32 New King James Version).
The Bible encourages us to pray and present our requests to God. Ephesians 6:18 says to pray always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints. Philippians 4:6 says to be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, we should let our requests be made known to God. However, remember that Jesus Christ is the greatest gift of God to you, not the good things you receive in answer to prayer.
Therefore, receive this greatest Gift of God with thanksgiving. Cherish this Gift. If you’re not born again yet, don’t reject this Gift any longer. Receive the Gift of God to you. In other words, be born again (John 3:3, 7). Romans 10:9 says that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (John 3:18 New King James Version). Let the Christmas season we are in be a memorable one for you by giving your life to Jesus if you haven’t yet.
For Jesus to die for your sins on the cross, He was first born as a baby, which is what is celebrated at Christmas. If there was no Christmas, there wouldn’t have been any Easter when we celebrate His death and resurrection. As Romans 5:6 says, when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. He was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification (Romans 4:25).
Jesus Christ is God’s greatest gift to humanity. Have you received Him into your heart? Have you been reconciled to God through Christ Jesus? “Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! For if, when we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!” (Romans 5:9-10 New International Version).
Jesus Christ is God’s greatest gift to humankind. But Jesus said in John 10:30, “I and My Father are one” (New King James Version). John 17:22b says a similar thing. Jesus is fully God and fully man. If Jesus is God and Jesus is the greatest gift that God has ever given the world, it means that God is the greatest gift to man. In other words, God’s greatest gift to us is Himself.
Christmas reminds us that God became man to dwell with us. “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel, which is translated, ‘God with us’” (Matthew 1:23 New King James Version). This refers to the prophecy in Isaiah 7:14. Immanuel: God with us. God is with us. God’s greatest gift to the world is Himself.
Are you saved? Have you been justified by the blood of Jesus? Have you been reconciled to God? “Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God” (2 Corinthians 5:20 New King James Version). Don’t only enjoy yourself this Christmas season; be sure that you have a living relationship with God through His Son, Jesus Christ. Share with the sinners the news of God’s Gift. God’s greatest gift to humans is Himself through God the Son, Jesus Christ.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, thank You for the gift of Your Son to die for my sins and reconcile me to You. I pray that all those who are yet to receive God’s greatest Gift to humanity will do so this season. They will accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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