Excerpts of Pastor Idowu Iluyomade's Sermon at the December 2017 Thanksgiving Service on Sunday, December 3, 2017
Bible Text: Matthew 26:6-13.
DEFINITION OF TERMS- ORDINARY AND EXTRAORDINARY
To understand the theme of the month, we need to define the terms. Extraordinary is extra added to the ordinary. Ordinary means usual, something expected, regular, routine, traditional, normal, standard, and common. Extraordinary means something remarkable, exceptional, uncommon, momentous, incredible, lacking in moderation, extremely and elaborately excessive, superfluous, spectacular, extravagant magnificent, outstanding, memorable, lavish, over and above limits previously established. As you give God extraordinary praise, He will give you extraordinary blessings in Jesus Mighty Name.
The account in our reference text is in all the Gospels (see Mark 14, Luke 7 and John 12), and each Gospel focused on varying details. The account in the book of John mentioned that this was the house of Mary, Martha and Lazarus her brother. It says Jesus was in the house of Simon, the leper. Why did the Bible mention Simon's condition, describing him as Simon the Leper, even though he had obviously been healed? His home was full of people and homes of lepers are usually desolate in the days of the Bible. The description was necessary so that we might understand where Simon was coming from. It is easy for us to forget the blessings of God and past graces in our lives. We were once sinners now we are saved. There are many today who were once jobless and are now earning incomes, many who were once sick but are now healed, or you had a prayer point at the beginning of the year and God has answered you. You need to be like the one leper, who out of the ten in Luke 17:15 that were healed, ran back to Jesus to say, 'thank You!' When the leper was approaching Jesus, he looked normal, having been healed on the way. He had to tell Jesus that “I am the one who was once a leper, but now healed.” Simon was a common name but lest we forget the past blessings in his life, the scriptures described him as Simon who was once a leper, crying unclean! Unclean! when people were approaching him. Ostracized from society, but healed now by our Lord and Master Jesus Christ. I am sure we can all identify with Simon the leper so as not to forget all God’s benefits towards us.
In verse 7, a woman with an alabaster box of very precious ointment came to pour it on Jesus. The account in Mark 14 says this ointment costs more than a year's wage, but the woman broke it and lavished it on Jesus, wiping the feet of Christ with her hair. The narration in Luke 7:36-50 even mentioned that the woman was a sinner. She washed the feet of Jesus with her tears, wiped it with her hair, kissed it and anointed the feet of Jesus. This was sacrificial but an embarrassing act, nonetheless, she did it because she was appreciative of what God had done for her family. It is similar to how congregants dance with reckless abandon at the City of David during our monthly Thanksgiving Services, engaging all manner of dancing styles to receive their creative miracles during the Last Dance. In 2 Samuel 6:20, David danced before the Lord with all his might, uncovering himself so much so that his wife was embarrassed, but his sacrifice was accepted by God while his wife was sanctioned by God.
The Bible says this woman with the alabaster box came to thank God. She did not hold back anything because her family had experienced the healing power of Jesus Christ. He had healed Simon, raised Lazarus from the dead, and delivered Mary from demonic oppression. When God does something for you, it is expected, usual, traditional or normal that you praise Him in return - this is ordinary praise (Luke 17:11-15). If you can count your blessings from January till December, you will appreciate what God has done in your life (Psalm 103:1-5). You can take a pill to sleep but you can't take a pill to wake up. God has been waking you up every morning continuously for 337 days so far, this year.
The woman worshipped and adored her God, yet she was weeping profusely such that her tears was enough to wash the feet of Jesus, who had trekked over twenty miles on dusty roads to reach her home. We do not know what issues she had that caused her so much grief but what we know was that she did not allow her issues to prevent her from worshipping and celebrating Jesus. It was spontaneous, she did not need any prompting. This is what Extra-Ordinary Praise is all about. It is indeed prophetic.
Extra-Ordinary Prophetic praise, worship and dance, celebrates victory in the face of apparent defeat.
Extra-ordinary praise declares God's ability in the circumstance of your inability.
Extra-ordinary praise is thanking God for answers that have not yet been seen knowing that the God that has promised is faithful.
Extra-ordinary praise gives voice to the Word that God has spoken to you (2 Chronicles 2:20).
Extra-ordinary praise is a step of faith.
When David in Psalm 34:1 said, "I will bless the LORD at all times, His praise shall continually be in my mouth", he gives us a standard for receiving answers to our heartfelt prayers. This is the standard of praise that God is expecting from you. The same God that has been with you thus far will not abandon you. He will do that which He has promised you in Jesus Mighty Name. I prophesy into your life that this month of December will be your best month yet in Jesus Mighty Name.
It is easy for you to praise God for what He has done but it is sacrificial to praise Him when you are still waiting for the miracle or blessings to manifest. Extra-ordinary praise is prophetic, it is unstoppable in any circumstance. It is a praise by faith and by revelation. It is something you do beyond the call of duty.
It doesn't matter what you are going through right now, God is faithful. That is why Paul and Silas praised God at midnight even while still in chains. God came down, broke every chain that held them bound and opened all prison doors that had limited them (Acts 16:23-24). That is one of the essence and benefits of extra-ordinary praise.
Thus, prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 54:1-3 says "Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord. Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes; for thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited." If you are going through any challenges, sing a song that celebrates the fulfilment of God's promises concerning you. Your deliverance is in your praise. I charge you to sing in the face of barrenness, loneliness, indebtedness, joblessness and adversity. You must never lose your praise.
Finally, Luke 9:24-25 says what shall it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul? This woman did not keep anything back. Worshiping God is an act of sacrifice and you will surely get more back in answered prayers! She gave all she had in worship of her Saviour. Judas Iscariot rebuked her that she was extravagant and wasteful and should have used the cheaper ointment customarily used to anoint guests, but Jesus silenced him. God accepted her praise, honoured her and gave her a generational blessing. He also wiped away her tears and forgave her sins. What is Jesus worth to you? To Judas Iscariot, Jesus was worth just 30 shekels of silver. To this woman, Jesus was worth everything. You need to honour Him with your time, your money, your dance. There's no one the Bible that gave extraordinary praise that did not receive a miracle. David did, so did Jehoshaphat and there was fulfilment of prophecy. Mary came to Jesus and offered her tears and gave all she had to Him, but the best gift you can offer to Jesus is your life. He wants to save your soul and change your circumstances, but you must be intimate with God and surrender your life to Him. If you are willing to repent and first surrender your life to Jesus Christ, then pray this prayer right now: LORD Jesus, I come to You right now. I know I am a sinner, please forgive me my sins. With my mouth, I confess that from right now, Jesus, I accept You as the LORD of my life. Please change my heart from a disobedient heart to an obedient heart. I believe that it is because of me You came into this world. You died for my sins, You took away my sins, take away my problems also. Please write my name in the Book of Life, and make me brand new in Jesus Mighty Name.
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