Who is Jesus to you? Is Jesus alive and near in your life? Believing in Jesus is it an option or a necessity for individual salvation? Until we know who Jesus is His place in the universe, why He became flesh and blood, why He died and resurrected, why He ascended to heaven and promised to come back again, His entire message and the work of His Holy Spirit, one may not see Jesus as He truly is. Until we have Jesus forming Himself within us and we accept Him fully we may never be able to operate in the full level of our possibility and capacity. Presently the level of relationship individual Christians have with Jesus can vary greatly from person to person, even from sect to sect. Just because one has been converted, and become a Christian, doesn’t necessarily mean that one has a deep and intimate relationship desired with Jesus. It is necessary to walk out your salvation, build and maintain a loving intimate relationship with Jesus on a moment to moment basis, and continually. The concern of Prophet TB Joshua on this issue of “Building and Maintaining an Intimate and Deep Relationship with Jesus”, he has expressed in multiple ways using several faith-building materials. The latest is SCOAN’s ongoing programme captioned, “Distance is not a Barrier for the Move of the Holy Spirit”. Prophet TB Joshua, the Bishop of SCOAN, is a man of God full of dynamic and living faith in Jesus. He takes challenges like COVID-19, and all others, to grow his ministry. This is an excellent example of having a living relationship with Jesus.
A relationship with Jesus would require more than reading the Bible, praying to God and going to church every Sunday. It goes beyond taking Jesus to be a sacrifice for our sins. Jesus is our example to follow, and we should do our best to live as He did depend only on His Holy Spirit. For example, under the exposition of SCOAN’s “Distance is not a Barrier” we are brought to the fact that despite that Jesus is in heaven and we are here, our different relationship with Jesus isn’t “distant”. The Bible, however, speaks about an intimate and dynamic relationship with Jesus. Jesus is, after all, a Person, the Son of God, He has an earthly mother, He is not someone who once lived on the earth and now is far away, but a person who is alive and can be very near. “He, Himself, was tempted in all points just as you are, but overcame sin and death”, (Hebrews 4:15; Romans 6:8). Because of His faithfulness, He has all the power and grace to help us to overcome the sins in our life. Therefore our relationship with Him can be full of life, (not something lifeless and stagnant), because He Himself is alive, (Revelation 1:18). Hence believe that an intimate relationship with Jesus is possible and enter into such a relationship for everything spiritually speaking. This is a product of one’s faith.
A relationship with Jesus is not one-sided. Jesus makes this clear when He says, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him”, (John 14:23). It is the relationship that Jesus and the Father want to come and make their home within us individually. This is the relationship that we ought to have with Him. Again Jesus says, “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him”, (John 14:21). Have you ever thought that Jesus wants to manifest (reveal) Himself to you? That promise is given to those who love Him and keep His commandments. So it is clear that such a revelation of Jesus is meant to occur throughout our lives as Christians and not only at the beginning of our Christian life.
Jesus says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and dine with him, and he with Me”, (Revelation 3:20). He says “anyone.” Doesn’t that include you? When we build a close relationship with Jesus, we begin to see things through His eyes. It is a bond that is forged in love and nurtured through continual communication and trust. By putting our complete faith in Christ Jesus and the outcome of all of our affairs, we are inviting Him into our life with loving trust and friendship. As this relationship deepens, we begin to see how God truly does oversee our growth, how He steers our course as we navigate our way through this lifetime.
Many people still confess about the “problem that has brought them to SCOAN”. Rather we want the world to see Jesus as the first thing to have for a deeper and successful close walk with God. A close and intimate walk with Jesus is the only way a prophet like TB Joshua can accomplish effectively the mission of Jesus in this era of carnality and unbelief generation. Prophet TB Joshua is not alone on this journey. God is there to oversee and lovingly direct his path. Similarly, as we build our relationship with Christ Jesus, our trust and faith are rewarded with spiritual strength, love, knowledge, and peace. We shall find ourselves emulating the very characteristics that God displays toward us including a significant capacity to extend love, forgiveness, understanding, and compassion toward our self and others. May your heart find great peace through your relationship with Jesus and be transformed in ways you never even dreamed were possible. Emmanuel
Prof. R. A. Ipinyomi, University of Ilorin, Nigeria