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Showing posts from March, 2015

Reverence in the Temple - Mark 11:16

Mark 11:16 "And He would not allow anyone to carry wares through the temple."
Jesus didn't permit irreverance of any kind in the place of worship. But, modern day libertinism plays the game of grace to justify its irreverance... watsapping and fb-ing while the congregation is called to worship... choir members who retire away to chat off or roam about while the preaching is on... people who grudgingly wait for the service to be over and have no desire to pray....preachers who crack irreverant jokes... The place of worship is not a place of self-time, business, and entertainment. The church is not a building, but "wherever" (place) two or three gather in Christ's name, no irreverent and undisciplined conduct can be permitted. Honor God!

Jesus Went Into The Temple (Matthew 21:12)

When Jesus came into the Temple there was:
1. Cleansing of Activities: He drove the ones who were turning God's temple into business center
2. Correction of Attitudes: He reminded that the House of God is a House of Prayer
3. Comfort to the Ailing: He healed the lame and the blind.

Why Is It Triumphant Sunday?

It is "triumphant" because the King has entered in.

3 Distinctives of Christ's Triumphant Entry
His entry shows His
-Conviction of Mission
-Control over Self
-Commitment to Righteousness

1. He moved towards the Cross, not away from the Cross.
The Cross defined His mission on earth. He knew where He was going.

2. He was indifferent to both Criticism and Praise.
Some praised and some criticized but He committed Himself to no man. It didn't matter what humans thought or said about Him; He knew who He was and what He was supposed to do.

3. He did not Compromise with Truth, with Meaning--He Cleansed the Temple
The Temple could not be confused with the Market. Jesus established that. There was no overlooking the truth. The definitions could not be compromised. The Priest made distinction between the clean and the unclean, between the right and the wrong, between the holy and the unholy.

Seeking the Lost: Luke 15:1-7

Luke 15:4 - I would ask, "What human shepherd would leave his 99 sheep all alone in the wilderness, where ravenous wolves were ready to devour, to go after one sheep that has wandered away? What man would risk the 99 for one and determine not to come back till he had found his lost one? I don't know if any human shepherd would, but God did. The lost state of a sinner absorbs more the attention of God than the state of 9999 un-lost righteous ones. I asked myself, where shall I find my God and I understood He's where the lost are to be found; for, He's gone out after them. A person who doesn't have a heart for the lost is far away from the heart of God. He is a stranger to the Shepherd. There cannot be mission without vision and passion. A man after God's own heart goes after the heart of God; and God's heart goes after the lost, seeking till it is found. The pharisees were not happy to find Jesus with the sinners, the lost; but, one cannot expect to find Hi…

Family

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No formality, no pretence,
No fear of hurt or offence,
Where love nestles in trust,
And hope will not fall to dust,
Where in both sunshine and rain,
Joy and peace remain the same,
Where walls are for protection,
Not for obstruction...
We know it's a family not just because they say,
We know it's a family for as a family they forever stay.

The Call of Moses: Exo 4:13-17

Exo 4:13 - "O Lord, please send someone else to do it".
How easy to say "No" and forego all hassles of mission! Moses recognized very well that the call of God involved a huge responsibility. Nobody likes to choose the complicated and risky road. Most Christians harbor a particular sense of happiness that it is not they who are out there in the difficult fields of missions. They are satisfied that they give some money or send some goods to help the missionaries out there. It always looks alright as long as it is not they but "someone else" out there. There are some who don't even give a dime to missions. They lack both vision and passion. It seems that Moses too was very disconnected from the concern and passion of God's heart. He doesn't seem to feel the same way that God feels for them. But, God knows that this is the man who one day would intercede and cry out to God for the Israelites saying, "Blot me out, but spare them!" God kno…

Should I Give Tithe?

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Forthcoming in Christian Trends

The first place to start is by asking the Christian, “Do you want to give at least a tithe of your income to the Lord?” The question is not “Are you able to give?” but “Do you want to give?” To those who are searching for reasons not give, because tithing is a burden to them and not a joy, the recommendation of Jesus would be, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." (Mat 19:21) But to those who wish to give to the Lord anything that they have that can be better useful for the work of the Kingdom, and are only willing to know if tithing is specifically mandatory in the New Testament, this article will try to provide an answer.

Tithing in the New Testament and the Early Church HistoryTemple Giving as Applied to Church GivingJesus did not forbid tithing among the Jews. In fact, He asserted that they ought not to neglect tithing (Matt.23:23). However, there seems…

The Call of Moses: Exodus 4:10-12

Exo 4:10 - "I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant..."

It is interesting to note, by the way, that in verse 10, Moses has begun to see God as "my Lord" and himself as "Your servant."

"I am not eloquent..." There are at least three ways in which this excuse has been interpreted by commentators. The first that Moses had some natural disability that made it difficult for him to communicate fluently. He got easily tongue-tied and tangled when trying to speak (NLT). But, Moses is not just worried that he is not eloquent, he observes that he is not eloquent even after God had started speaking to him and shown him these amazing signs ("nor since You have spoken to Your servant"). It seems he is saying, "Lord, it's okay with these external signs, but what about my own disability, my own thorn in the flesh?" We are not told if Moses was ever healed of this disability, if there was one. But, it is…

The Call of Moses: Exo 4:6-9

Exo 4:6-8 - It is interesting to see that all the three signs that God gave to Moses had symbolic affinities to the redemptive plan of God. The rod and the serpent, the leprous hand, water and blood, all these speak of human sin and divine redemption. I don't think this was accidental. But, what is more striking is the direct literal experience of Moses.In this second sign, Moses' hand turns leprous, then is healed again. Leprosy was considered unclean in those days. It carried stigma and reproach. It was physically contagious and a threat to society. It symbolized hopeless alienation. Here, Moses experiences becoming unclean (of leprosy) and then becoming clean (through healing) in a moment. He becomes suddenly a man of reproach and then is restored to honour. In an instant, he becomes an outcaste and then is healed to be included. What went through the mind of Moses in the instant he took his hand out of his bosom and saw that he was now a leper? What went through his mind w…

The LORD will perfect that which concerns me (Psa 138:8)

The LORD will perfect that which concerns me (Psa 138:8)

The LORD always finishes what He starts. Men may start works that they leave unfinished; but, God always finishes what He starts. However, when it comes to His work in our lives, He can't perfect it without our cooperation. There are three essential things:

1. Absolute Trust and Confidence in God's Working
"Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ." (Phi 1:6)

Trust implies: (a) Faith in God's goodness and His work, to believe in Him even when everything looks the opposite. (b) Patience (James 1:4). To let patience do its work. To never compromise with anything that goes against the will of God.

2. Understanding of God's Will and Work in Our Lives
"Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure." (Phi 2:12-13)

We can understand God…

Blessings of Sonship in Christ (Galatians 4)

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God sent forth His Son...that we might receive the adoption as sons. (Gal 4:4-5 NKJ)

The poets asserted that we are offspring of God (Acts 17:28). But, like the prodigal son, we were lost, groping like the blind, in bondage to the elements of the world (Gal.4:1,2). Yet, when His Grace appeared, we saw light, we received the right to be called the children of God (Jn.1:12). He received us in loving embrace (Lk.15:20). He put His ring on our hand (Lk.15:22).He placed and positioned us as sons (Gk. huiothesia, "to place as son").

And with this placement as sons, this sonship, we received blessings:

1. The Spirit of the Son by which we call out "Abba, Father" (Gal.4:6)
He is the Spirit of prayer and supplication (Eph.6:18). He helps us in our weakness by praying for us (Rom.8:26). He is the inner witness (Rom.8:16) and the one who speaks the words of Truth in our heart (Jn.16:13; Rev.2:7).

2. Heirship. We became heirs of God through Christ (Gal.4:7)
We have received an …

The Call of Moses: Exodus 4:1-5

Exo.4:1 - Faith is integral to the mission-task. Faith in God is primary to Mission; whether people will believe or not is not what the missionary should worry about. Of course their unbelief is a hindrance to their salvation; but, the missionary is called first to begin with faith in God and must not allow fear of human rejection to prevent him from obeying the divine commission. Also, God's missionary is not worried about credentials, recognition, security, and human support. The Call is his motivation, his direction, his qualification, his identity, and his goal. (Phil.3:13,14). A man recognized by God needs no recognition from men (Gal.2:6). He calls men to belief, but his calling is not affected by their response."Suppose..." This is Moses' lack of confidence in himself, which is good in a way because our confidence must be in God and not in flesh; however, here, Moses has not yet been able to replace lack of confidence in self with confidence in God. He is trou…

The Call of Moses: Exodus 3

Exo.3:1 - Under the shadow of someone, his father-in-law. Serving in waiting.

Exo.3:2 - The burning bush is anything that God uses to draw one's attention aside, to hear Him.

Exo.3:3 - To "turn aside" or be turned aside... how crucial it is, to turn aside to God (in Moses' case, unwittingly)! To turn aside from ones daily routine.

Exo.3:4 - He calls an individual specifically, He calls by his name. Calling is individual and specific.

Exo.3:5 - In the Old Testament, the veil was still there. There was a point of separation between God and man. In the New, He became flesh. The veil was torn. How much more privileged we are! We are not just near Him, we are in Him.

Exo.3:6 - The OT address: God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and God of Jacob. NT address: God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. We have no reason to be afraid to look upon God (1Jn.1:1-2).

Exo.3:7-10 - Mission starts with Divine Concern and Compassion, with the heart of God for His people. Mission also is connected …