August 2017

Have Mercy Upon Us O God

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Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; According to Your mercy remember me, For Your goodness’ sake, O Lord (Psalm 25:7 NKJV)

 

This is the cry of David as he acknowledged his sin and his transgressions against the Lord as he was asking the Lord to have mercy on him. If others sin against us, we will cry for justice, will we not? Can you imagine if we pray right after we acknowledged our sin, "Lord, have justice on me" - what will happen to us? But that is not how we pray because we know that He is a good God full of mercy and grace. Instead, we pray David's prayer as quoted from Psalm 25:7 above.

 

The Loving God And Suffering

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16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16 NKJV)

 

If God is so loving, why do I see so much suffering in this life? This is the question that people love to ask just to prove that God is not “love” or there is no God who is love. From reading the quoted above verse we know that the loving God was willing to sacrifice His only Son to redeem man from the wages of their sin. Why did He do that? Did He not love His only Son anymore? What went through God's mind when He sent His only Son to die on the cross for the sake of sinners? Was He pleased or was He sad?

The Power Of Confession

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The Power Of Confession

 

Thursday, August 24, 2017

 

32 "Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 10:32-33 NKJV).

 

The word "therefore" is a conclusion of the thought prior to the current statement made by Christ. Five verses before Christ was talking about the fear of God and He concluded His thought in verse thirty-two by saying, "Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven." This is a promise made by Christ Himself that He will not cast out anyone who confesses Him before men but rather him He will also confess before His Father who is in heaven. Christ did not give any promise that was based on deeds but rather about confession that was based on faith.

The Day Jesus Put The Power Of Sin Away

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6 "knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin". (Romans 6:6 NKJV)

 

Now, nothing can be clearer than this that our old way of life was crucified (nailed to the cross) with Christ. The crucifixion of our old life was the ending of sin reigning in our lives as our master - sin has no more power over us. How can we say that sin has no more power over us who believe in Christ? Knowing that the sting of sin is death and the strength of sin is the law (1 Corinthians 15:56) and Christ has already come to fulfill the demand of the law, which is the strength of sin, to the fullest (Matthew 5:17)  and He is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes (Romans 10:4). 

Faith Or Work?

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3 For what does the Scripture say?“Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” 4 Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. 5 But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, 6 just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works: 7 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, And whose sins are covered; Blessed is the man to whom the Lord shall not impute sin.” (Romans 4:3-8 NKJV)

 

There are a lot of books that we have been reading growing up and sometimes we do not agree with the Author. How do we treat the Bible when we read it? Do we treat the Bible differently when we read it or do we treat the Bible the same as any other book we read? One thing we must know that the Bible does not contain the Word of God, the Bible IS the Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16). If we believe that the Bible is the Word of God then we must believe the whole Bible as Truth and treat it with respect. The truth is not the fact for the fact is man's opinion that changes over time as more information becomes available. The truth is absolute and will never change over time. In other words, the fact is subject to the truth.

Bearing The Weight Of Salvation

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1 I tell the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit, 2 that I have great sorrow and continual grief in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my countrymen according to the flesh, 4 who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises (Romans 9:1-4 NKJV).


In his opening statement in the epistle he wrote to his brethren, his countrymen according to the flesh, who were the Israelites, Paul used the name above all names "I tell the truth in Christ" to assure his brethren that he was not lying. Paul wanted his countrymen to know how much he loved them that he was willing to sacrifice his salvation for their sake. What went through Paul's mind that he was willing to give up his salvation for the sake of his countrymen the Israelites? What was the problem he saw among his countrymen leading him to make such a decision using the name above all names - "I tell the truth in Christ"? Where did he put the weight of his decision upon? Did he really mean it when he said that he was willing to be accursed from Christ (giving up his salvation) for his brethren?

 

Oneness

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But did He not make them one, Having a remnant of the Spirit? And why one? He seeks godly offspring. Therefore take heed to your spirit, And let none deal treacherously with the wife of his youth. 16 “For the Lord God of Israel says That He hates divorce, For it covers one’s garment with violence,” Says the Lord of hosts. “Therefore take heed to your spirit, That you do not deal treacherously.” (Malachi 2:15-16 NKJV)

 

As a pastor, now and then, I do a pre-marital counseling. The very question I always ask the couple coming to see me is, “Why do you want to marry her/him?” The answer I received thus far was always standard because she has a godly character, she is motherly, and she is faithful, submissive, and very supportive in our relationship. How about him? Well, he is a godly leader, he never put his hands on me, and he is full of understanding, supportive and gentle. Does it ring a bell, when you hear all of these? Does it worry you? It worries me so much because this kind of answer will not lead to divorce but the unspoken thing they fail to see.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jesus Is Lord Of The Sabbath

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22 Moses therefore gave you circumcision (not that it is from Moses, but from the fathers), and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath. 23 If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath, so that the law of Moses should not be broken, are you angry with Me because I made a man completely well on the Sabbath? (John 7:22-23 NKJV)


This is a strange concept to me, leaving a wound through circumcision on the Sabbath was permitted but it was not right for Jesus to make a man completely well on the Sabbath, how can this be? Did this only happen during the biblical time? Or do we still see this contradiction today in the twenty-first century? Around twenty years ago or so, I met a man at the hospital who asked me to push the elevator button for him. This man told me, “it is not allowed for a Jewish man to perform works on the Sabbath”. When I asked him who flushed the toilette for him before leaving home, he was very upset.

Taking action

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Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6 NKJV)


When I was a child, I was bullied many times by certain kids at school; they were far bigger than me. It was my mother who told me to stand my ground and not to be afraid of them. It was one day when it became too much for me; the bully punched me in the face and run away laughing at me. That night I could not sleep, my heart was filled with anger and I was so impatient to wait for the sunrise and yet I still got to wait for my school began at 1 PM.

 

 

 

A Partner In Crime

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Whoever is a partner with a thief hates his own life; He swears to tell the truth, but reveals nothing. (Proverbs 29:24 NKJV)

 

The book of Proverbs was written by Solomon, son of David, King of Israel and Solomon was known to be the wisest man ever exists. What lesson do we learn from the quoted verse above? King Solomon wants us to know that he who partners with a thief shares equally the consequences of their crime (the receiver is as bad as the thief). So, he who divides plunder with a thief is his own worst enemy. Here we learn directly what sin does and how sin ruins the life of him who partner with a thief. Can he escape the consequences?