WHOSE IMAGE ARE YOU?
Beloved friends, we welcome you to today’s broadcast. We are very comfortable with the testimonies we’ve been receiving over time concerning the impacts our messages are making in the lives of our listeners. We give GOD all the glory, and pray that the LORD will continue to help us to sustain this broadcast, to the glory of HIS Name.
Our country has many problems. The people who profess CHRIST are among those who have problems. As a result of these problems many people are running about, from one place to another, from one church to another, from one prayer house to another, from one hospital to another, from one faith-based organization to another, seeking solutions to their problems. They go from one deliverance center to another, from one man of God to another, from one prophet to another, seeking miracles, blessings, deliverances and breakthroughs: breakthrough solutions. This is the issue that is affecting a great number of Christians today. Almost everyone is seeking deliverance from one thing and another. In most cases solutions refuse to come; they seem not to work. Sometimes there is nothing requiring deliverance, but preachers will make you believe you need deliverance.
Today, we want to bring you a message which we have titled, Whose Image are You?
WHOSE IMAGE ARE YOU?
And we will be reading from the Book of Matthew 22:15-23
15 Then the Pharisees went and plotted how they might entangle Him in His talk. 16 And they sent to Him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that You are true, and teach the way of God in truth; nor do You care about anyone, for You do not regard the person of men. 17 Tell us, therefore, what do You think? Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”
18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why do you test Me, you hypocrites? 19 Show Me the tax money.”
So they brought Him a denarius.
20 And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?”
21 They said to Him, “Caesar’s.”
And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 22 When they had heard these words, they marveled, and left Him and went their way.
23 The same day the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Him and asked Him.
Let us pray.
Almighty FATHER in heaven, the FATHER of our LORD JESUS CHRIST, we thank YOU for today. I pray, O LORD, that YOU will impress upon my listeners that there is an image we need to acquire: the image of our LORD JESUS CHRIST. And as, O GOD our FATHER, we progress in this message, let the entrance of YOUR Word give Your people light…in the Name of JESUS CHRIST. AMEN!
As I said before, so much covenant-breaking and family liberation – yet nothing seems to work. It is not that breaking evil covenant is wrong or holding family deliverances or community deliverances are wrong, but the impression given by practitioners is that: your problems will be over once you engage in such things. Some people have gotten confused and tired, dejected, and have even backslidden because they have no idea what next to do. Many people have aided such greedy pseudo preachers. Anointing oil industries strive, with the marketers smiling home with money; holy water industries making huge sums of money; aprons and handkerchiefs, headgears, bangles that produce luck etc. are all over the place.
What is the problem? We people – we seek the wrong thing. GOD has not called us to seek blessings, to seek breakthroughs, to seek deliverances the way we are doing it today. Rather HE has asked us to seek first the Kingdom of GOD and HIS righteousness and all these things for which people are running around shall be added unto them. In Matthew 6:33 – that’s what the bible says: seek first the Kingdom and HIS righteousness. Just two things: GOD’s kingdom and HIS righteousness. To seek HIS Kingdom and HIS righteousness simply means, we should seek to become like JESUS in character, in obedience, in faith; we should seek to become the image of CHRIST; we should seek CHRIST-likeness – for only in CHRIST-likeness do we have both HIS kingdom life and HIS righteousness. Once we obtain that all other things shall be added unto us.
What constitutes all other things? They are the things we are seeking: success, breakthrough, deliverance, peace, joy, progress, healing, prosperity; they include marriage, fruit of the womb, money, good jobs, good business, housing, education, promotion, good health and blessings. GOD wants to give us these things, but first things first: we should seek GOD first, submit to HIS rulership, and accept to live by the rules, laws and commandments of the kingdom. That is HIS righteousness.
HE even has given us a Helper: even the HOLY SPIRIT, then you will begin to experience additional things. Rather people have put it upside-down. It does not work that way. That is not the order.
Let us turn to our text in Matthew 22:15-22. The Pharisees came testing JESUS about taxation, whether it was lawful or not to pay tax to Caesar. Caesar here represents the government. JESUS in HIS wisdom requested them to produce money: in this case a coin. Paper money or coins often have images of the rulers engraved in them. All monies are issued by the government. JESUS turned to the image on the coin and asked them whose image it was. They all chorused Caesar. That answer decided the matter. HE told them to take what belonged to Caesar and give to him – meaning they should pay tax because Caesar’s image is on it.
What is the spiritual implication of this issue of image? I’m going to mention six things that constitute the spiritual implications.
- Image determines ownership.
- The image we bear will determine our final or eternal destination.
Image will determine the fruit you bear. Image determines fruit.
- Image manifests as fruit.
- Growth is becoming like CHRIST. Growth in Christianity is more of becoming like CHRIST.
- Image determines authority
And the last thing we shall say is that,
- Image determines quality of worship: for the bible says, they that worship GOD must worship HIM in spirit and in truth.
The image we bear will determine our final or eternal destination. We cannot talk about growth unless we settle the issue of image and get it right. GOD has an image. The devil also has an image. Human beings, men, women, youths, teenagers are objects of controversy. So image determines ownership: the devil or GOD Almighty. The question to answer: does this youth or teenage or man or woman belong to GOD or the devil? If you are standing in the middle of these two kingdoms the question is asked, should this person go to heaven where GOD rules or hell where the devil rules? This is the spiritual question that will settle the matter in the same way the tax money was settled.
The implication of this: whoever has his image on someone is the owner. If Satan has his image on someone then Satan is the owner of that person; if GOD’s image, then the person belongs to GOD.
In Genesis 1:26-27, the bible says that GOD created man and woman in HIS image; and repeated, in the image of GOD created HE them: as if GOD was emphasizing from the original situation man had the image of GOD. But he lost it. HE lost the image of GOD through Adam. Man took on the image of Satan: rebellion, disobedience, evil plans and thoughts, lying, stealing, immorality etc.
JESUS came to restore the image of GOD. Accepting JESUS as LORD and Savior restores the image of GOD in any person. The word is the mirror you look in everyday to see whether you are progressively becoming like JESUS.
The image of GOD manifests as fruit or virtues; the image of Satan manifests as vices. The more fruits you bear the more you are taking the image of GOD. The vices in your life depict you as belonging to Satan.
Therefore let us settle the issue of image today, before we close.
Whose image are you bearing? As we begin to round up this message, I pray that you will realize that image will determine ownership, and the image translates into vices or into fruits. And you know yourselves. You know the image you have.
As a matter of fact JESUS said to some people, you are of your father the devil because he was a liar from the beginning. If you have been taken into the lying business then you bear the image of Satan, and it is not controversial at all.
I will like to pray for you. I will like you to say, I am tired of bearing another image that is not of YOU, O LORD. I will like you to say there are people with dual image, partly GOD, partly Satan. It will not work; heaven will reject you. There is no sin in heaven. You can say, LORD, I am sorry; I do not have YOUR image. I repent and drop the image of Satan. I accept YOUR image by grace through faith. And if you pray this prayer from the Bottom of your heart the LORD JESUS will hear you, and you will acquire the image of our LORD JESUS CHRIST, and then the ownership will be settled.
Whose image are you is the question?
Let us pray.
Heavenly FATHER the FATHER of our LORD JESUS CHRIST, as we, O GOD our FATHER, come to the close of this message may YOU help our people to think about the image they are bearing, whether they are resembling the LORD JESUS CHRIST, even GOD our Creator; or whether they resemble Satan the opposer, the rebellious one, the one that opposes GOD. And help our people to decide the image that will benefit them in this life. And those, O GOD, who are taking decisions now, I pray that YOU help them, O GOD, and as they grow to bear fruit that will make them resemble our FATHER in Heaven…in JESUS Mighty Name I have prayed. AMEN!