Archive for September, 2010

Faith in Jesus: Saves

Hello people, I write yet again, I’ve noticed that quiet a few Christian writers including me have received hate and abusive mail following the recent row over burning books which some consider holy. I find it hard to believe that such hatred sprang up within a span of a week or two, it felt rather like this hatred was nurtured, may be by handed down religious teaching and this time they found reason to express their hatred. So far I have had a horrible 2 weeks and I’ve also learned that even the closest of friends can be manipulative and strut two hoots attitude.

Well today our Pastor brought about an interesting piece of scripture. Allow me to quote it for you.

Mark 9:14-27

14 And when they came to the disciples, they saw a great crowd around them, and scribes arguing with them. 15 And immediately all the crowd, when they saw him, were greatly amazed and ran up to him and greeted him. 16 And he asked them, “What are you arguing about with them?” 17 And someone from the crowd answered him, “Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a spirit that makes him mute. 18 And whenever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid. So I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able.” 19 And he answered them, “O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me.” 20 And they brought the boy to him. And when the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth. 21 And Jesus asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. 22 And it has often cast him into fire and into water, to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” 23 And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.” 24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!” 25 And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You mute and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.” 26 And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse, so that most of them said, “He is dead.” 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. 28 And when he had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” 29 And he said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.”

Verse 14, shows what normally happens to Christian, people question, argue and ask to prove ourselves. Verse 15 exposes this world’s funny bone, they are willing to get locked into arguments with Jesus’ believers but at a given time they all run to Jesus. Verse 17, shows Jesus’ passionate stand for his believers and he questions the crowd: “What are you arguing about with them?”. Verse 18 is where the story starts, here the man’s sorrow over his son’s suffering is revealed. I don’t know how many of you readers are parents but I have seen the worst of people being the most tender & loving with their children, to them to see their child suffering is worse that seeing their own selves suffering. Parents generally wish that the suffering would come upon themselves rather than on their children; thank God we have Jesus, who suffered for us and bore our inequity. Verse 19 shows that even the disciples who stayed and learned from Jesus in person, did not have the faith (in Jesus) that would drive the wicked spirit out. Verse 20 shows you the Majesty of Jesus because the evil spirit appears to go into panic mode at just the sight of Him. From verses 21 & 22 you will see that this evil spirit has tormented this boy since childhood and even tried to kill him. Let us however go in deeper into 21 & 22 can you notice that Jesus is asking this of the boy’s father something critical. In the Bible, Jesus has asked people what it is they want, even if it were a blind man (Mark 10:46-52). To you and me it is very obvious that a blind man may want to see but Jesus is God and God is good. He does not only give you what you need, he gives you your hearts desire, which is much more than what you just need. The Bible does show us situations where Jesus is clearly Omniscient (All Knowing), here are a few examples:

  • Jesus Speaks about his Death (Mark 9:30-32)
  • Payment of the Temple Tax (Matthew 17:24-27)
  • Catch of Fish (John 21:6)
  • The Samaritan Woman (John 4:17)
  • The resurrection of Lazarus (John 11:4)
  • Jesus predicts Peters denial of knowing Him at the hour of Jesus’ death (Luke 22:34)
  • The woman who touched Jesus and was healed while He was in a crowd (Luke 8:40-56)
  • Jesus declares to Peter how Peter would die (John 21:18)
  • Jesus all-knowingly reproves Apostle Thomas’s unbelief that he had been raised from the death. (John 20:27)
  • Jesus send his disciples to a place where a Passover meal was prepared for them (Matthew 26:17-19)
  • Jesus tells his disciples of where they would find the colt that had never been ridden, for He was to ride into Jerusalem on it (Mark 11:1-7).

I could go on and on to show God’s Omniscient nature in Jesus but this article is not for that. My point here was just to show you that Jesus being all knowing shows compassion to the boy’s father by asking him about his troubled son. Coming to Mark 9 verse 23 shows Jesus repeating the rather absurd part of the statement of doubt put to Him by the boy’s father:“BUT IF YOU CAN DO ANYTHING, have compassion on us and help us”. This statement shows how much the father was beaten down in trying for years to heal his son. This father has come to Jesus, the same God who made his son (John 1:3) and doubts that He (Jesus Creator) will be able to heal him. In verse 24, you can see that the father immediately cried for he cannot help his own belief but he wants to help his son, you can see that the father asks Jesus to help him believe.

I don’t know how many of you trust in Jesus but this I do know that Satan makes doubt creep in, in even the strongest men of God, he did that with John the Baptist too (Mat 11:1-6), of whom Jesus said that there was not man of God ever like him (Mat 11:11). From verse 24 of Mark 9, you can plainly see that the boy’s father submits to Jesus even in his unbelief, this may seem like the king of all oxymorons but this was a broken man who was trying Jesus. The Bible says that those who trust in Jesus are saved (Psalms 22:4//Luke 7:50) and it here seems so clear that Jesus saves this man, from his own unbelief, in verse 25-27 Jesus does help this man with what he was desperate for and unable to do for years.

Verses 28-29 shows us how it is that we can develop faith in Jesus that can even moves mountains, the answer is prayer. Now prayer is not some ritualistic religiously sounding scripts, which at the most you may only know what it means. Prayer is a conversation with God, if your religious script declares your faith in your god and you find it hard to believe that God will work your situation out for you then of what use is that scripted prayer. Has not God given you a mind and a mouth to make your own prayer or do you feel that the person responsible for the script can play your role in your interaction with God better than you can do for yourself? If that were ever true then there would be no such thing as a personal relationship between God and each individual and that god would be casting identical religious men/women like a company that were manufacturing a certain product.

To conclude, yes; it is faith in Jesus that saves but what matters is not that you have enough faith, what matter is that you come to Jesus, if you don’t have the faith in Him that will save you then submit that unbelief to Him, He being Almighty and Sovereign God will then proceed to instill that faith in you & then heaven is what you would call home.

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Almighty and Soverign Lord

Hello people, am back with one more article based on my Bible study. This is what I was reading just the other day.

Jeremiah 50:24-26, 33-34

24 Babylonia, you fought against me, and you have been caught in the trap I set for you, even though you did not know it. 25 I have opened the place where my weapons are stored, and in my anger I have taken them out, because I, the Sovereign Lord Almighty, have work to do in Babylonia. 26 Attack it from every side and break open the places where its grain is stored! Pile up the loot like piles of grain! Destroy the country! Leave nothing at all!

….

33 The Lord Almighty says, “The people of Israel and of Judah are oppressed. All who captured them are guarding them closely and will not let them go. 34 But the one who will rescue them is strong — his name is the Lord Almighty. He himself will take up their cause and will bring peace to the earth, but trouble to the people of Babylonia.”

Note: Babylonia was an ancient cultural region in central-southern Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq), with Babylon as its capital. Babylonia emerged when Hanmurabi (Sixth king of Babylon) created an empire out of the territories of the former Akkadian Empire (an empire centered around Akkad).

Now do you know who was Biblically referred to as the spiritual king of the wicked empire of Babylon, it was Satan himself. Let’s check out some scripture for the same.

Isaiah 14:12-15 (Amplified)

12How have you fallen from heaven, O light-bringer and daystar, son of the morning! How you have been cut down to the ground, you who weakened and laid low the nations [O blasphemous, satanic king of Babylon!]

13And you said in your heart, I will ascend to heaven; I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will sit upon the mount of assembly in the uttermost north.

14I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.

15Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol (Hades), to the innermost recesses of the pit (the region of the dead).

Let us read the Isaiah 14:12 from the NKJV (New King James Version) English translation of my Bible to see the name of Satan revealed and this we can link to the same verse of the Amplified English translation of my Bible to know that Satan was referred to as King of Babylon.

Isaiah 14:12 (NKJV)

12 “ How you are fallen from heaven,
O Lucifer, son of the morning!
How you are cut down to the ground,
You who weakened the nations!

Note: The Bible was not originally written in English, so when you begin studying the Bible you will find the need to refer to various English translations in order to dwell into what exactly a particular passage is saying.

We can now try to understand how Lucifer (meaning light-bringer) has surely tried to deceive the world in order to place himself above the throne of God (Isaiah 14:13-14). There are enough references in the Bible which shows certainties of Satan deceiving people by claiming to be an angel of the light (2 Corinthians 11:14) and so bringing a counterfeit beliefs where God (Jesus) is not is in first place (Jeremiah 14:13).

2 Corinthians 11:4,13-15 (Apostle Paul warns early Christians against false teachers/prophets)

4 For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough.

..

13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.

I am sure it is no news to you that there are monotheist beliefs in this world that claim to know Jesus and at the same time deny His Godhead (Jeremiah 14:13; Satan trying to place himself above God), they may also claim their belief to have come via an angel of God (2 Corinthians 11:13). So now know who that deceiving angel was, I would now like to show you the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophesy of Isaiah 14:15 sees this angel of deception get kicked out from heaven to earth and then to hell.

Revelation 12:9

The huge dragon was thrown out — that ancient serpent, called the Devil, or Satan, that deceived the whole world. He was thrown down to earth, and all his angels with him.

Luke 10:18

Jesus answered them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.

Revelation 20:10

Then the Devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of fire and sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet had already been thrown; and they will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

Wait the story is not over as yet, I have so far explained the defeat of Satan & his kingdom. Allow me now reveal the Glory of Jesus as Almighty and Sovereign God. Let us look at Luke 11:14-23.

Luke 11:14-23

14 Jesus was driving out a demon that could not talk; and when the demon went out, the man began to talk. The crowds were amazed, 15 but some of the people said, “It is Beelzebul, the chief of the demons, who gives him the power to drive them out.”

16 Others wanted to trap Jesus, so they asked him to perform a miracle to show that God approved of him. 17 But Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he said to them, “Any country that divides itself into groups which fight each other will not last very long; a family divided against itself falls apart. 18 So if Satan’s kingdom has groups fighting each other, how can it last? You say that I drive out demons because Beelzebul gives me the power to do so. 19 If this is how I drive them out, how do your followers drive them out? Your own followers prove that you are wrong! 20 No, it is rather by means of God’s power that I drive out demons, and this proves that the Kingdom of God has already come to you.

21 “When a strong man, with all his weapons ready, guards his own house, all his belongings are safe. 22 But when a stronger man attacks him and defeats him, he carries away all the weapons the owner was depending on and divides up what he stole.

23 “Anyone who is not for me is really against me; anyone who does not help me gather is really scattering.

Can you see the remarkable similarity, the God of the Old Testament in Jeremiah 50:24-26, 33-34 in the start of this article, refers to Himself as the stronger entity that not only rescues His people but piles up the loot captured from the enemy, Babylon. I have shown you that Satan was referred to as the king of Babylon. Now look at Luke 11:14-23, the situation is same just presented differently. Jesus in verse 21 of Luke 11 is clearly referring to himself as the stronger man compared to Satan and Jesus too loots the house of Satan and divides the spoils.

Here is some scripture to enhance your understanding and to show how the Church (Body of believers in Jesus) will break through the gates of the house of Satan to save souls in the Name of Jesus.

Matthew 16:18

And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

To conclude, the secret behind the prophesy of Jeremiah 50:24-26, 33-34, is that it contains a title that refers to Jesus and they are “Almighty and Sovereign (meaning: in complete control) Lord” (Jeremiah 50:25, 34).

Be free from deceit

Hello folks today, I write on Sunday word to the Church. The word was on being deceived. Let us look at some scripture from the Old Testament.

The scripture is from Joshua 9:1:20, the scripture is very big so allow me to summarize it for you. A man called Joshua, who took on the leadership from Moses, is out to claim the land, God promises to the children of Jacob (Israel). God was with them and the Israelites had many victories even in the most ridiculous of odds. Now there were a people from a land called Gibeon who stayed in a part of the land that Joshua was to claim for Israel. The Gibeonites were however smart and decides to trick the Israelites into a peace treaty so that they could continue to live in that land. What they did was they went to the Israelites is worn out clothes and footwear, taking with them stale bread and carrying wine is patched up wine-skins. When they reached the camp of Joshua and the Israelites they claimed to come from a distant land and was outside the land God promised to give the people of Israel (Jacob). They lied and said that when they had left from their land, the bread was fresh, wine-skins new, along with presentable clothes and footwear but now that they have traveled this far and for so long, their clothes & footwear were now worn out, the bread had turned stale and the wineskins carrying wine needed to be patched up. They presented themselves as a people who were willing to serve the Israelites. Joshua and the leaders did not consult God and took an oath of peace & friendship with them in the name of God, based on what appeared to be true. Three days later the Israelites realize that they have been deceived because the Gibeonites were a people who lived on part of the land that was promised to Israel but having made an oath in the name of the God of Israel, Joshua and the leaders have no choice but to stick to their promise. Joshua had a spotless Biblical record of leadership other than this and Achan’s sin (Joshua 7:1-28).

We must remember every believer in Jesus has 3 enemies

  1. The World (Gal 3:22)

Gal 3:22

But the scripture says that the whole world is under the power of sin;….

  1. His flesh (sinful desire: Gal 5:17)

Gal 5:17

17 For what our human nature wants is opposed to what the Spirit wants, and what the Spirit wants is opposed to what our human nature wants.

  1. Satan

The Bible says in John 10:10 that Satan is like a thief that comes to steal, kill and destroy. Satan is referred to as a thief not because he steals money or someone life or brings destruction. He may do all or some of the same but his purpose is mainly to steal our peace. Satan is one creation who has the most experience in deceiving & he also has been the most successful. 2 Corinthians 11:14 says that Satan can even easily disguise himself as a angel of light, does it now strike you from where all false belief that leads people away from the salvation in Lord Jesus, comes from? Satan can even perform miracles (2 Thes 2:9) to add some icing on the cake of false doctrine.

Satan appeared as a crafty servant and tempted Eve into eating the forbidden fruit that lead them to sin.

Rev 12:9

9 The huge dragon was thrown out — that ancient serpent, called the Devil, or Satan, that deceived the whole world. He was thrown down to earth, and all his angels with him.

It must be noted that just like Eve, you too can be deceived and be lead away from the true Christ that saves (2 Cor 11:3). Our fight is not flesh against flesh but against the principalities and powers that corrupt that world.

People often say we must resist Satan but they forget goes before that, according to scripture.

James 4:7

So then, submit to God. Resist the Devil, and he will run away from you.

Submitting to the will of God is recognition that you put God first before yourself and this claim is what shows the Lordship of Jesus in a person’s life. Consider this, even though Jesus created the whole universe (Hebrews 1:2), as per the Biblical record of His life on earth, he submitted to the will of His Father (Mat 6:10; Luke 22:42) all the time.

To conclude, what we must know is that in all that we do we need to seek Jesus’ will in our lives. Walk by faith and not by sight or else you will wind up being deceived as Joshua was.  Remember even what appears to be good may not be necessarily good because it may not be from God.

Many Jesus lovers & trusters have begun their walk confidently in Jesus but Satan desperately attempts to bring in doubt and in doing so deceives. Like the story of Peter getting of the boat to walk on water with Jesus.

Matthew 14:22-33

22 Then Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side of the lake, while he sent the people away. 23 After sending the people away, he went up a hill by himself to pray. When evening came, Jesus was there alone; 24 and by this time the boat was far out in the lake, tossed about by the waves, because the wind was blowing against it.

25 Between three and six o’clock in the morning Jesus came to the disciples, walking on the water. 26 When they saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost!” they said, and screamed with fear.

27 Jesus spoke to them at once. “Courage!” he said. “It is I. Don’t be afraid!”

28 Then Peter spoke up. “Lord, if it is really you, order me to come out on the water to you.”

29 “Come!” answered Jesus. So Peter got out of the boat and started walking on the water to Jesus. 30 But when he noticed the strong wind, he was afraid and started to sink down in the water. “Save me, Lord!” he cried.

31 At once Jesus reached out and grabbed hold of him and said, “How little faith you have! Why did you doubt?”

32 They both got into the boat, and the wind died down. 33 Then the disciples in the boat worshipped Jesus. “Truly you are the Son of God!” they exclaimed.

So remember friend in all things seek God’s counsel and when you feel you are drowning call out to Jesus this will keep you from the deceit of the world and of Satan.

Who is the real Jesus?

Jesus is the most dominant figure in history, he is pinnacle figure of true Christianity. Yes there many contrary view and books that claim that the real Jesus was not the Jesus of the Bible. These views or books may claim to be fictitious for entertainment sake or may claim to be true. But a trust-worthy story of Jesus can only come from those who were with Him while he was on earth, these stories/accounts of Jesus can only be found in the 4 Gospels that is Matthew, Mark, Luke and John in the New Testament (Bible). These accounts started with the Jesus’ disciples (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) themselves and were then passed on orally, while adhering to Church to maintain accuracy and were then all penned down all before 70AD. All heretic views/books date much after this and lay a less than genuine claim to be true.

I would like to present you with a book from the United Church of God, who bring into this dark religiously deceived world the light of the real Jesus. Please visit the URL below to read this rather interesting book.

http://www.gnmagazine.org/booklets/JC/JC.pdf

God’s Love

Hi people, today I’ll be writing on God’s Love. Yeah, this to is from a sermon I heard. I can’t help but share this with you all because it is so soul stirring. I am actually starting to live of sermons…lol, may be someday I’ll get back to writing my own. Anyways coming back, let me share with you what I understood so far of what he spoke of on God’s love, I would like to tell you guys that the Bible is founded on the Love of God. In the Old Testament, God declares to his people how much he loves them and in the New Testament, he actually proves it in action. Let me give you an example.

Isaiah 49:15 (Old Testament)

So the Lord answers, “Can a woman forget her own baby and not love the child she bore? Even if a mother should forget her child, I will never forget you.

1 John 4:10 (New Testament)

This is what love is: it is not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the means by which our sins are forgiven.

As you know, God (Jesus) endured being tortured and put to death to pay the price of our sins, which was death itself. This was the will of the Father. This is something, which shows that Faith in Jesus is the only Faith that you can have in God because this is the only faith in the whole world that shows God’s Sacrificial Love not only in word but also in action. Do not get me wrong, I am not trying to show you some “new age love stuff” or some sought of “hippy love idea”, you know like “make love not war” or like in the 60’s when a hippy would give a soldier a flower. What I am talking of is what message the authors of the Bible were talking of. Let me add a drop of water to your ocean of what you already know. Well for starters the New Testament was written in Greek because at that given time Greek was the most popular language. So the Bible was written in a time & in a language that the majority could understand. Now the “love” that was written of in the New Testament was written as “Agape”, which is Greek. Check the definition given below.

Agape/Agapao defined:
Agape (noun)/Agapao (verb) is an unselfish, unconditional, sacrificial love, and is a love that can also be given to one who is NOT worthy of it. It is often referred to among Christians as the God kind of love.

Here is a break down on “Agape/Agapao”:

Agape (noun) is used 116 times in the New Testament.
Agapao (verb) is used 146 times in the New Testament listed below.

So you see this kind of love existed even during the time the Bible was written, which was a few decades into AD for the New Testament and many of years into BC for the Old Testament. Let me emphasize that the Love spoken of here is “unselfish, unconditional, sacrificial love”, this kind of love exist fictionally only in movies & in reality only from God. This kind of Love is given not because the recipient is deserving, infact the recipient does not have the potential to Love the same way because human nature takes advantage of what is good not to give back good but to make use of what is good to the fullest ….that is what human nature is by itself. Let me put it this way, God love us so much that he gave up his own Son to save us, fully knowing that we would never deserve or be able to repay such love. Let me quote Titus 3:5-7.

Titus 3:5-7 (he is God)

5 he saved us. It was not because of any good deeds that we ourselves had done, but because of his own mercy that he saved us, through the Holy Spirit, who gives us new birth and new life by washing us. 6 God poured out the Holy Spirit abundantly on us through Jesus Christ our Saviour, 7 so that by his grace we might be put right with God and come into possession of the eternal life we hope for.

If you would allow me to be very blunt then I would say that man is worse than an animal. I’ll give you 2 examples.

  1. Consider a dog, you will know that a dog by nature will never bite the hand that cares for him but you cannot say the same about a mans nature.
  2. We all know that 90% of the damage caused to the environment is because of no animal but because of man.

Don’t get me know wrong people I do not hate mankind. I am a man myself and I love the new life that Christ has given me but what I was trying to show you is that God love us so much that he saved us by his grace even though we are sinful by nature. Here is some supporting scripture.

Ephesians 2:5

that while we were spiritually dead in our disobedience he brought us to life with Christ. It is by God’s grace that you have been saved.

Another thing that I would like to enlighten you with is that it is God’s love that saves us. Let me light you up with some more scripture.

1 John 4:16

16 And we ourselves know and believe the love which God has for us.

God is love, and those who live in love live in union with God and God lives in union with them.

1Corinthians 13:4-5

4 Love is patient and kind; it is not jealous or conceited or proud; 5 love is not ill-mannered or selfish or irritable; love does not keep a record of wrongs;

From the first piece of New Testament scripture you can see that God is love. The second piece of scripture tells you among other things, that Love does not keep a record of wrongs. Linking the two, you can see that it is God’s love that will make sure that your wrongs are forgiven. I repeat it is God’s Love, which is the reason you are forgiven… again I would say God’s Unconditional Love. I have shown you from above that this unconditional is from the Bible (Agape). So my friends your sins are NOT forgiven because of what you have done, you may have prayed everyday or have done good / charitable deeds or fasted or sacrificed an animal. You are forgiven because God loves you. This forgiveness in love makes sense ONLY when you consider the Jesus’ died for your sins. Unconditional Love my friends that is why we are saved. If our salvation were to depend on us it would not be called Unconditional Love. God’s love is unconditional and it is for this reason that we receive what we don’t deserve and this is what is known as His grace.

Ephesians 2:8

For it is by God’s grace that you have been saved through faith. It is not the result of your own efforts, but God’s gift, so that no one can boast about it.

To continue, I would like to clear a common misconception. Let me put a question to you, if you could change something in a person’s life in order to get that person closer to you then out of 2 people

  1. A horrible sinner
  2. A light sinner

Who do you think will yield a better result? Keep your thoughts with you & read the scripture below.

Luke 7:36-50 (Pharisee is like a Jewish Priest & the Pharisee thought of Jesus only as a prophet because he knew little of Jesus)

36 A Pharisee invited Jesus to have dinner with him, and Jesus went to his house and sat down to eat. 37 In that town was a woman who lived a sinful life. She heard that Jesus was eating in the Pharisee’s house, so she brought an alabaster jar full of perfume 38 and stood behind Jesus, by his feet, crying and wetting his feet with her tears. Then she dried his feet with her hair, kissed them, and poured the perfume on them. 39 When the Pharisee saw this, he said to himself, “If this man really were a prophet, he would know who this woman is who is touching him; he would know what kind of sinful life she lives!”

40 Jesus spoke up and said to him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”

“Yes, Teacher,” he said, “tell me.”

41 “There were two men who owed money to a moneylender,” Jesus began. “One owed him five hundred silver coins, and the other owed him fifty. 42 Neither of them could pay him back, so he cancelled the debts of both. Which one, then, will love him more?”

43 “I suppose,” answered Simon, “that it would be the one who was forgiven more.”

“You are right,” said Jesus. 44 Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your home, and you gave me no water for my feet, but she has washed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. 45 You did not welcome me with a kiss, but she has not stopped kissing my feet since I came. 46 You provided no olive oil for my head, but she has covered my feet with perfume. 47 I tell you, then, the great love she has shown proves that her many sins have been forgiven. But whoever has been forgiven little shows only a little love.”

48 Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.”

49 The others sitting at the table began to say to themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?”

50 But Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

From the above piece of scripture, I would like to talk of different love, a God given love/zeal from man for God. You see you may say “hey, I am the worst of sinners. I have been the ring leader in all the bad stuff that happens in my neighborhood”. Well the above scripture show that when Jesus walks into your life, His love will bring about the best of changes in you despite your human nature. Jesus is God and he will use his power to transform you, then you will gladly accept Jesus, because deep within, you will know that all your sins in the past, present and even in the future….have been forgiven. You have been set free. In fact as the above scripture says, you will love Him more than the others because, your sins were a lot but He loved you first (1 John 4:19) and forgave you of all your sins. Allow me to show you the unlikely people whom God has loved & used according to his purpose. So do not feel like God can’t use you, just remember.
Noah was a drunk (Genesis 9:21)
Jacob was a liar (Genesis 27:19)
Joseph was abused (Genesis 37:23)
Moses had a stuttering problem (Exodus 4:10)
Gideon was afraid (Judges 6:27)
Samson was a womanizer (Judges 14:1-2, Judges16:1, Judges16:4)
Rahab was a prostitute (Joshua 2:1)
David had an affair and was a murderer (2 Samuel 11)
Isaiah preached naked (Isaiah 20:2-3)
Jonah ran from God (Jonah 1:3)
Naomi was a widow (Ruth 1:3)
Job went bankrupt (Job1:13-22)
Peter denied Christ (3 times!) (Matthew 26:69-75)
Mary Magdalene was the Samaritan woman who was divorced, more than once. (John 4:15-19)
Zacchaeus was too small (Luke 19:1-3)
Paul was a persecutor of God’s people [Christians] (Acts 8:1-3, Acts 9:1)
Lazarus was dead! (John 1:1-16)

So you see, just as God loved these guys, despite who they were, God loves you for whom you are but it is this same love that makes you change into who He wants you to be. I would like to close this post the most popular of scripture on the love of God for the world.

John 3:16

16 For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not die but have eternal life.

Eyes of Faith

Hello people today was a great day with my Church, today’s word focused on the way we look at things. Let us consider 5 Biblical examples.

  1. Abram and his nephew Lot (Genesis 13).

This is about the time before God named Abram, Abraham. The verse to focus on, needs some back ground information. Abram is very rich with sheep, goats, cattle, silver and gold. Lot also had sheep, goats, and cattle, as well as his own family and servants. And so there was not enough pasture land for the two of them to stay together, because they had too many animals. So quarrels broke out between the men who took care of Abram’s animals and those who took care of Lot’s animals. Abram one day approached Lot and told him of the situation and told him that since the land could not support the two of them, it would be better if they live seperately. Abram gave Lot the option of which land he would choose to live on, Lot was given the chance to choose first. Let’s check out what happened.

Genesis 13:10-13

10 Lot looked round and saw that the whole Jordan Valley, all the way to Zoar, had plenty of water, like the Garden of the Lord or like the land of Egypt. (This was before the Lord had destroyed the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11 So Lot chose the whole Jordan Valley for himself and moved away towards the east. That is how the two men parted. 12 Abram stayed in the land of Canaan, and Lot settled among the cities in the valley and camped near Sodom, 13 whose people were wicked and sinned against the Lord.

As you can see Lot trusted his own sight, what appealed to him is what he chose. Now let’s move a little further to see what happens about Abram.

Genesis 13:14-18

14 After Lot had left, the Lord said to Abram, “From where you are, look carefully in all directions. 15 I am going to give you and your descendants all the land that you see, and it will be yours for ever. 16 I am going to give you so many descendants that no one will be able to count them all; it would be as easy to count all the specks of dust on earth! 17 Now, go and look over the whole land, because I am going to give it all to you.” 18 So Abram moved his camp and settled near the sacred trees of Mamre at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the Lord.

As you may see that Abraham trusted in God more than in what things appeared to be to him. And incase you do not know as time passes, Abraham is blessed even more & Lot practically looses everything even his wife.

  1. Peter walks on water with Jesus

Matthew 14:22-32

22 Then Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side of the lake, while he sent the people away. 23 After sending the people away, he went up a hill by himself to pray. When evening came, Jesus was there alone; 24 and by this time the boat was far out in the lake, tossed about by the waves, because the wind was blowing against it.

25 Between three and six o’clock in the morning Jesus came to the disciples, walking on the water. 26 When they saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost!” they said, and screamed with fear.

27 Jesus spoke to them at once. “Courage!” he said. “It is I. Don’t be afraid!”

28 Then Peter spoke up. “Lord, if it is really you, order me to come out on the water to you.”

29 “Come!” answered Jesus. So Peter got out of the boat and started walking on the water to Jesus. 30 But when he noticed the strong wind, he was afraid and started to sink down in the water. “Save me, Lord!” he cried.

31 At once Jesus reached out and grabbed hold of him and said, “How little faith you have! Why did you doubt?”

32 They both got into the boat, and the wind died down. 33 Then the disciples in the boat worshipped Jesus. “Truly you are the Son of God!” they exclaimed.

As you can see from the above, Peter seeks to believe and call out to Jesus as Lord (almighty and sovereign) and says that if it is Him (Jesus) then let him (Peter) come walking out of the boat to meet with Jesus. What does Jesus reply? COME! Apostle Peter was indeed rewarded for his faith in Jesus for he walked on water right till a strong wind caused him to doubt. You see Peter did not try to rationalize; his eyes were the eyes of faith. He sought faith in Jesus and even asked for a sign to justify his faith in Jesus. These miracles are always on role for those who seek and find Jesus.

  1. The disobedience of the first man and woman against God.

As you may know the first man and woman God made was Adam and Eve. God made them and they were given the beautiful garden of Eden to stay in but God warned them not eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of what was right and wrong, for then they would fall under their own condemnation. However Satan succeeds in tempting the man and woman into eating the fruit.

Genesis 3:6

6 The woman saw how beautiful the tree was and how good its fruit would be to eat, and she thought how wonderful it would be to become wise. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, and he also ate it.

You can see that Eve like Lot looked and gets taken in by what is pleasing to her eyes. She puts her perspective before God’s warning & what does this lead to …getting kicked out of the Garden of Eden. Why? Because in the same garden was the tree of life, whose fruit would enable them to live forever. Can you imagine a person living under his own condemnation forever? What misery will that be? Suicide would seem like a blessing in such a dammed situation.

However the tree of life we now have is God’s free gift for the world, on this tree hung a solution for condemnation from all sin. The tree I am talking about is the cross on which hung the perfect sacrifice (Jesus) for all sin….salvation purely by grace….Amen.

  1. Satan tries to tempt Jesus

Luke 4:1-13

1 Jesus returned from the Jordan full of the Holy Spirit and was led by the Spirit into the desert, 2 where he was tempted by the Devil for 40 days. In all that time he ate nothing, so that he was hungry when it was over.

3 The Devil said to him, “If you are God’s Son, order this stone to turn into bread.”

4 But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Human beings cannot live on bread alone.’ ”

5 Then the Devil took him up and showed him in a second all the kingdoms of the world. 6 “I will give you all this power and all this wealth,” the Devil told him. “It has all been handed over to me, and I can give it to anyone I choose. 7 All this will be yours, then, if you worship me.”

8 Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve only him!’ ”

9 Then the Devil took him to Jerusalem and set him on the highest point of the Temple, and said to him, “If you are God’s Son, throw yourself down from here. 10 For the scripture says, ‘God will order his angels to take good care of you.’

11 It also says, ‘They will hold you up with their hands so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones.’ ”

12 But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ”

13 When the Devil finished tempting Jesus in every way, he left him for a while.

You can see that Jesus does not act violently or try to show Satan that he can be worse. You can clearly see that Jesus is in full control and Satan is the person who appears to be worried. All his efforts to lure Jesus, fail. You may look at the above and see that even in the weakness of Jesus’ 40 day fast; Jesus not only puts up a really good fight but has Satan all worried. Getting Satan worried was as easy for Jesus as twiddling His thumbs. Jesus in the weakness of His 40 day fast handles the baddest dude in all creation and still comes out victorious.

The above verse also shows Jesus trusting His Father, please do not make this to be that Jesus was just a man/prophet. Jesus is fully man and fully God. In fact the control which Jesus showed against Satan, even in His weakness of His fasting, was something not even the strongest of men has ever Biblically shown.

However the Bible does say that while Jesus was on earth, He lowered Himself to something lower than even the angels because He accepted His Father’s plan for the Salvation of man, all out of humility, for He alone could steer through with this plan.

Hebrews 2:9,14

But we do see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, so that through God’s grace he should die for everyone. We see him now crowned with glory and honour because of the death he suffered.

….

14 Since the children, as he calls them, are people of flesh and blood, Jesus himself became like them and shared their human nature. He did this so that through his death he might destroy the Devil, who has the power over death,

Philippians 2:8 (About Jesus)

He was humble and walked the path of obedience all the way to death — his death on the cross.

  1. The thief with the eyes of faith.

Luke 23:32-43

32 Two other men, both of them criminals, were also led out to be put to death with Jesus. 33 When they came to the place called “The Skull”, they crucified Jesus there, and the two criminals, one on his right and the other on his left. 34 Jesus said, “Forgive them, Father! They don’t know what they are doing.” They divided his clothes among themselves by throwing dice. 35 The people stood there watching while the Jewish leaders jeered at him: “He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Messiah whom God has chosen!”

36 The soldiers also mocked him: they came up to him and offered him cheap wine, 37 and said, “Save yourself if you are the king of the Jews!”

38 Above him were written these words: “This is the King of the Jews.”

39 One of the criminals hanging there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”

40 The other one, however, rebuked him, saying, “Don’t you fear God? You received the same sentence he did. 41 Ours, however, is only right, because we are getting what we deserve for what we did; but he has done no wrong.” 42 And he said to Jesus, “Remember me, Jesus, when you come as King!”

43 Jesus said to him, “I promise you that today you will be in Paradise with me.”

You can see that the criminal with the eyes of faith gets the free gift of eternal life ….by grace through his faith in Jesus.

From all the above 5 points, it is important to note that when God speaks to you, it mostly will be something you cannot rationalize, because if you could have rationalized it then you would have done it, without Him speaking to you. I would like to close with 4 lovely pieces of scripture.

Hebrews 11:6

6 No one can please God without faith, for whoever comes to God must have faith that God exists and rewards those who seek him.

1 Corinthians 2:8-10 (from the letter of Apostle Paul to the Church of Corinth)

8None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9However, as it is written:
“No eye has seen,
no ear has heard,
no mind has conceived
what God has prepared for those who love him”— 10but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.

2 Corinthians 4:18

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

2 Corinthians 5:7

7 For our life is a matter of faith, not of sight.

So people listen not to your own perception but listen to Jesus & Him alone in union with the Father and the Spirit, for He knows what is best for you.

Forgiveness

Hi folks I write again, as almost always, this is from the Word brought brilliantly to our Church by one of the youth members, which was his first time. The topic is on forgiveness. I know that this is very easy to talk about and just as hard to practice.

There are many reasons as to why we need to forgive, the three main ones are.

  1. Jesus teaches His people to forgive.

In Luke 6:37, Jesus teaches His people to forgive and be forgiven. Luke 6:27-30 even teaches to do good to those who wrong you.

  1. God is the judge not us.

Many times we take it upon ourselves to repay wrong with wrong, that is to take revenge. The world considers revenge to be something what is right but is not so in the eyes of Jesus. How could we say that God is good if he allows wrong to repay wrong. If we are to avenge the wrong done to us then that sends a signal to God saying “I can neither wait for your course of action nor do I feel that You will repay the wrong to the extent of the hurt caused”. That is something like when someone murders a person close to you; you take it upon yourself to take revenge because you feel that the police or government will do nothing. So you see taking your own course of action for revenge speaks very little about your faith in God & it speaks of even lesser faith for those who terrorize people in the name of their god. So we must remember that the God that truly exist as God, will judge & punish the guilty (Deuteronomy 32:35) & just as when we go into restaurants, we leave the cooking to the cook, in the same when we come to Jesus, we need to leave the judging to Jesus (John 9:39).

  1. To continue to live a blessed life.

I am sure you will understand that you can only enjoy and count your blessing if you stop counting the wrongs done unto you & brooding over them. I have not lived my full earthly life as yet but till now I have never come across anyone who is so good at multi-tasking that he is happy and sad at the same time. People who believe in Jesus cannot afford to be unforgiving because they are ambassadors of God in this world.

So here are the 3 very good reasons as to why we need to forgive but how do we go about it. The answer is love. The love that I am talking about is very different from what the world knows as love. You may read 1 Corinthians 13, to know the kind of love the Bible talks about. This is one thing I am unable to put in words. I feel infinitely further than couples who are unable express their love for each other in words. In John13: 34, Jesus gives us a new commandment, to love one another.

So why is Jesus making so much emphasis on love? How exactly does love work where forgiving is concerned? 1 Corinthians 13:5, stand out boldly saying that love keeps no records of wrongs. You may think very little against keeping records of the wrong done unto you. Many a times when someone would wrong me, I would say in my mind “I will remember this”. I have even heard many people say when they are angry & hurt “I will not forget this”. That is precisely what keeping records of wrongs is about. We do not remember the wrongs just to exercise our memory, we keep the records of the wrongs done so that we can pay the concerned people back the same way in good time & till that time comes to pass we will walk in His faith or live our lives with a pebble in our shoes. Wouldn’t you agree that marriages would be so much happier if husbands and wives did not keep records of the wrongs done by their partner? The only person who existed in the beginning, exist even now & will continue to exist forever, who ONLY can remember the wrongs done unto Him in order that his transgressors be forgiven, is Jesus & the reason He alone can do this is because He is God. The rules of science, nature & world do not apply to Him. When Jesus went to the cross, every cry of His from the torture, was a cry remembering that man needed to be saved from his sins. Jesus remembers his torture and death on the cross not to take revenge on man but to know that through faith in Him, man is saved.

According to the world, it is a good thing to forgive if the wrong doer sincerely apologizes for the wrong he has done. But for people who believe in Jesus, it is very important that we forgive even if the wrong doer is not at all sorry for what he has done. This is because as Luke 6:37 says it is not for us to judge and condemn even the wrongs that are done unto to us as mentioned in point 2.

If you have watched a few action movies, you will see how the bad guys attack or capture or kill the hero’s family or close friend & how the hero does some special training and returns the favour with generous interest. How good it is to see such instant action in just a 2 or 3 hour film. In real life that hero would be living with bitterness, with the hope of revenge. That bitterness will wear him out rather than driving him to achieve his goal over such a long period, God willing if the revenge worked out then our hero will find it hard to break the habit of living in bitterness and then he would not be a good guy or hero at all. That’s the movies for you, showing the world what they want to see because that is what they think is right.

Let us consider some stories in the Bible to show you God’s standard of forgiveness.

The prodigal (lost) son (Luke 15:11-32): There was a rich man with 2 sons. The younger one takes his share of wealth and squanders it & returns. The father not only accepts and forgives him but throws a big feast because of hi return. The elder son did not like this because even though he was a good son, his father did not throw him any feast. However his father explained that his son was lost but is now found. His love for his younger son helped him overlook what he did & forgive him.

The adulterous woman (John 8:1-11): An adulterous woman was brought to Jesus who was caught in the act of adultery. Now according to the Law, she was to be stoned to death but what does Jesus say? He says let he who has not sinned pick up the first stone. All the people throw their stones away and leave one by one. The only one then standing with the woman was Jesus. Allow me to quote some of it.

John 8:7-11

7 As they stood there asking him questions, he straightened himself up and said to them, “Whichever one of you has committed no sin may throw the first stone at her.” 8 Then he bent over again and wrote on the ground. 9 When they heard this, they all left, one by one, the older ones first. Jesus was left alone, with the woman still standing there. 10 He straightened himself up and said to her, “Where are they? Is there no one left to condemn you?”

11 “No one, sir,” she answered.

“Well, then,” Jesus said, “I do not condemn you either. Go, but do not sin again.”]

In the above scripture, the reason the only one who remained with the woman was Jesus is because he is without sin, he has always been & will forever be. He is God and being God, he forgave the woman & when he did not condemn her no one could, because whoever comes or are brought in their despair to Jesus, are relieved by His judgment.

Isaiah 58:9

When you pray, I will answer you. When you call to me, I will respond.

“If you put an end to oppression, to every gesture of contempt, and to every evil word;

People, who have not accepted Jesus as their King, find it impossibly hard to forgive. Trying to forgive someone & rejecting the forgiveness of your sins by Jesus is like someone trying to lend money without having a steady income. To the world forgiveness is not harming that person in return & what goes along with this is that they will have nothing to do with that person, you know, the forgive and forget attitude which is a futile attempt to do away with the hurt feeling. Without Jesus, your attempt to forgive will hurt you and cause you even more grief when you see the wrong doer. With Jesus, you just need to take that first step of faith & not only forgive but accept that person with love (Luke 6:28). If that person rejects you then leave it to God while keeping him in prayer but if he accepts then leave to God’s Sovereign Spirit to take control of that situation. For starters forgiveness will hurt when you think about it because your conscience will try to talk you out of it. Jesus will make sure that the result is good & He will reward you for your faith in Him (Matthew 15:28). Jesus’ style of forgiveness is action oriented, to do with the heart, not just words (1 John 3:18). If you have trouble forgiving this way then pray (talk: talking to God is prayer) to Jesus, ask Him to send His Spirit upon you, so that you may have victory over all your hurt feeling. Jesus holds all authority over the past present and future & he will make changes in your life to help you be happy in due time even when you are in the company of the wrong doer, that is the power of my God.

Just one last thing, it is important that my God (Father Son & Spirit) being a God of love also pronounces judgment with punishment. All of creation are spiritual orphans. Just as man would call an orphan his son if that orphan were close to his own son, in the same way we are God’s children only if Jesus is King in our hearts. Just as a loving parent corrects but never severely punishes his son. In the same way God corrects his people, who are union with Him through His Son & for this same reason only we are saved, all because of Jesus.

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