Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A Pilgrim's Thoughts

Life is short. Every hour of life we get after 60s or 70s is a bonus.
Life is lonely. Many have left along the way; many more will go sooner or later.
Life is fleeting, temporary, and uncertain, and we are drawing closer to our end...

For the ungodly, life is bleak and hopeless. Everything is meaningless, like chasing the wind.
But for the believers, life is a pilgrimage. They are but strangers here and sojourners. This  world is not their home. There is an afterlife. And God is with them as their companion and guide. Life is less troubling, less frightening, and less worrisome.

“Hear my prayer, O LORD,
And give ear to my cry; 
Do not be silent at my tears; 
For I am a stranger with You, 
A sojourner, as all my fathers were." —Psalm 39:12

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A New Person

The apostle Paul hated Jesus and persecuted His followers.
But a personal encounter and spiritual union with Christ changed him.
He became a new person. 
The old order of sin, death, and selfishness was gone.
A new beginning, a new covenant, a new perspective and way of living had come.

Following Jesus is not turning over a new leaf.
It is beginning a new life under a new Master.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; 
Old things have passed away; 
Behold, all things have become new. 
—2 Corinthians 5:17

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Working for Rewards

In our society,

Many do thing for rewards,

Others because it is the right thing to do,

They live out their life for their beliefs,

Rewards or not...

As believers in Jesus, 

We will receive our rewards one day. 

But reward should not be our motivation for the right living,

Neither is it to earn our salvation. 

Our desire is to please God who first loves us (1 john 4:19),

Our goal is to live out our life for God,

The best thing to do is to trust and obey God,

Rewards or not...

Thursday, November 7, 2013

God’s Beloved Child

Prolonged affliction often vexes us.

We want an immediate solution, a quick fix.

But there are things in life that can’t be fixed; they can only be borne.

David was hounded by King Saul for 9 long years.

David cried to God about his troubles: “How long, O Lord? Will You forget me forever? How long will You hide Your face from me? How long shall I take counsel in my soul, Having sorrow in my heart daily? How long will my enemy be exalted over me? (Psalm 13:1-2)

As Christians, we can complain to God in our troubles.

When we turn to God with our complaints, we come to our senses.

In David’s case, he remembered God’s love: “I have trusted in Your mercy; my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountifully with me” (Psalm 13: 5-6).

Sufferings may persist, but David could sing in the midst of his trials.

David was reminded that he was God’s beloved child.

And that is all he needed to know.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Share Christ

As Christians, we are told to witness what Jesus has done in us and for us.

We don’t have to know every theological issue or answer every difficult religious question. What we have to do is to share Christ and our experiences of Christ in our lives. What we have to do is to worship and praise God the Father Who so loved us that He sent Jesus, His only begotten Son, to die on the Cross and save us from sin and death.

And to make it easier for us to share Christ, Christ had given us His Holy Spirit. “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

As followers of Christ, our calling is to point lost sinners to Christ. Only Christ can give lost sinners His life-changing power. Only Jesus is God’s chosen Savior for all lost humanity!

Let us share Christ today!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Christians Belong Together

The apostle John reminded us in 1 John 3:18, “My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.”

When God gave His Son Jesus for us, we are a part of God’s family.

This means we belong to God and to one another.

If we love Christ, then we must love one another.

We must accept the care of others when we are in need.

We must also serve others with all our heart.

True Christians belong together.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Insignificant Man

The Word of God came to John the Baptist in the wilderness. (Luke 3:2)

John was an obscure man living in the desert. But the Word of God came to him.

You don’t have to be powerful and influential, lovely and admirable, sociable and outgoing, before God accepts you.

To be significant in God’s eyes is to submit and commit yourself to Him, to trust and obey Him and carry out His explicit command.

We must care very little about men's praise and reward for our efforts.

We must remember our priority: we are dealing with an awesome and mighty God.

Be men of few words. Obey Him and listen very carefully to Him. 

Though we may appear insignificant, God will make us significant.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Peace in Jesus

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. (John 16:33).

Jesus gave us peace with God (Rom. 5:1). He died for our sins. He also turned God's wrath away from us. Jesus reconciled us with His Father.

Jesus gave us the peace of God (Phil. 4:7). We are told not to be anxious about anything. We are told to make all our requests known to God the Father in Jesus' Name.

True peace is only found in Jesus. And all Christians are to have peace with God and with men.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Be Wise

Listen to counsel and receive instruction, that you may be wise in your latter days. (Proverb 19:20)

  • Listen to counsel. We don't always know everything. We don’t always do everything correct. We don't always see the big picture. We don’t always have the right solutions. Often times, we need advice and guidance, especially from the wise and the experienced. We also need God. We need Him to direct our path and shape our lives.

  • And receive instruction. Wise counsels are hard to come by. They must be studied and understood. They must be executed and approved. They must be improved and perfected. We must be humble and willing to learn. We must be teachable and correctable to learn to be wise.

  • That you may be wise in your latter days. Wisdom comes with time, experience, and the readiness to change. Wisdom takes time and much effort to gain. It requires much meditation and contemplation. It requires much trials and patience. But it has great rewards. It makes us wise! Wise not in our own eyes, but wise in the eyes of God. The Scriptures said, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.” To be wise is to fear God and turn away from evil! Only then do we learn how to worship God and enjoy Him, all the days of our life.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Transformed Life

But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. (2 Corinthians 3:18)

  • Through Christ, we behold the glory of the Lord by studying the Word of God.

  • By the Spirit of the Lord, we are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory.

  • The power of God’s Spirit, and the life of God’s Son, are at work in us, conforming us to God’s image.

  • Our character flaws are revealed, dealt with, and corrected. Character development becomes a way of life.

  • We surrender ourselves to God and His will. Our life is filled with kindness, patience, integrity, and love.

  • The Spirit develops in us the clear image of Christ. We are transformed from glory to glory in Christ Jesus our Lord.  

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Acknowledging God

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths (Prov. 3:5-6).

  • Our Father knows what is best for us. Often we struggle with this reality. Many times we stubbornly refuse to acknowledge this truth. We think, we feel and we do otherwise, and the final end is very much to our own harm and disgrace.

  • We assume our way is right. We think we know better than the LORD. We think our knowledge is vast, our understanding complete, and our wisdom better.

  • We are broken and humbled. The reality is often far from the truth. We are made to realize that we have little knowledge, limited understanding, and our wisdom is foolishness.

  • Experience makes a difference. It takes time to learn the truth. Eventually we learn to be still and rest in God. We acknowledge God’s Presence, His Sovereignty, and His Providence, and understand that His Way is better than our way. And we want God to direct our paths, establish our steps, and bring us closer to Him.

  • A broken and humbled soul has true faith. He rests in God, in unbroken, eternal communion. He rests in God and looks for no other helper. He is content with the working of God in his life. And he rests in God with a hope to see Him soon.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

We are Called to Serve

For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many. (Mark 10:45)

  • The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve. Jesus served us by proclaiming the Gospel to a lost world. He served us by coming to find us and save us when we had gone astray. He served us by living a perfect life in our place.

  • The Son of Man gave His life a ransom for many. Jesus served us by laying down His life for us. He served us by being obedient to death on the cross. He served us by giving His life to set us free from sin and death. He served us by paying the ransom due for our sin with His own life. He served us by healing us and making us children of God.

  • As followers of Jesus, we are called to follow Him. We are to serve as Jesus served, unselfishly. We are to give as Jesus gave, sacrificially. We are to love as Jesus loved, unconditionally. We are to forgive as Jesus forgave, abundantly. And we are to be holy as He is holy.

  • We are called to serve, and not to be served.

Monday, August 5, 2013

God is my Strength

But I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; For You have been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble. To You, O my Strength, I will sing praises; For God is my defense, My God of mercy. (Psalm 59:16-17)

  • God is my Strength. He keeps me going every day. He gets me through hardships. He picks me up when I am down. He is my might, physically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually.

  • God is my Defense. He protects me in times of danger and trouble. He guards me from every evil, even during times when I act stupid.

  • God is my Refuge. He hides me from the snares and traps of my enemies. He shelters me with His peace and joy. He replenishes my spirit and strengthens me. He gives me hope to live and thrive.

  • Oh! My God is powerful! He is in control of everything! He is strong and mighty! He is powerful to overcome all my enemies. He is powerful to save me.

  • Oh! My God is merciful. He will never abandon, destroy, or forget me. He will come to my rescue, and intervene whenever I am facing difficult situations. He has never failed me. Not once!

  • Oh! My God’s love is unconditional, unchanging, unfailing, and unending. He is my strength, my defense and my refuge. I will sing aloud of His power and mercy every morning at the beginning of day!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Our Past Sin

Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed. (John 8:36)

  • Our debt to sin is paid in full by Jesus Christ.

  • We are free from sin by Jesus’ blood.

  • When we confess our sin, God forgives us for Jesus' sake.

  • God puts us right. He separates us from our sin.

  • We don’t have to stay connected to our past sin.

  • Our past sins are forgiven. We no longer wallow in self-pity or regret of long ago failures.

  • We are a new creation. We are born again, with the Holy Spirit and His power.

  • It is time for worship and fellowship, and enjoy our freedom in God.

  • Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Too Blessed to Complain

Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! (Psalm 107:8)

  • Too often we lament the moments in life that don’t go our way, when we should spend time focusing on the wonderful gifts our heavenly Father has given us.

  • We must realize that we are too blessed to complain or be unhappy in this beautiful life we are given. Everything we have is a gift from God. In His grace, God shares His property with us. In His grace, God shares the ability for you and me to make money in order to put food on our table and to clothe our families.

  • Let us rather spend time celebrating the goodness of God upon our lives. Let us renew our commitment to be more actively and intentionally grateful because our God has been good to us in more ways than we could ever count.

  • Psalm 107 is a song that seeks to rectify thankless thinking. The psalmist makes a plea to hearts grown cold with ingratitude, repeating four times, “Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!”

  • Even in the worst of times, we have much to be thankful for. May we learn to thank God for His goodness to us!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

A Clean Start

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things. (Philippians 4:8)

  • When lustful or vengeful thoughts creep into our minds, reading and meditating on God’s Word can help to clean up our thinking.

  • We are told to love the Lord with all our heart, all our soul, and all our mind.

  • We are told not to be conformed to this world but to be transformed by the renewing of our mind.

  • We are told to think about things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy.

  • When our minds wander to evil, the best thing to do is to allow the wisdom of the Bible to permeate our thoughts and hearts.

  • Dear Lord, our desire is to spend time in Your Word. We know that meditating on Your Word fills our minds with thoughts of You and helps to keep our thinking from wandering to evil. Help us to do so.

  • A clean heart comes from choosing to turn from our own self-will life to a God-will life.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

God, the Master Worker

I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. (Psalm 139:14)

  • A person’s overall health can be measured by the health of the eye. What care the Lord has taken to place these details in the bodies He has created!

  • David, the psalmist, correctly identified God as the Master Worker who is the source of our origin. He responded in praise and thanksgiving to God: “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well”.

  • The enormous complexities of our bodies reflect the genius and wisdom of our great Creator. The wonder of His design is more than breathtaking. It gives us countless reasons to worship Him!

  • Lord, we are in awe of You! Thank You that You created us with such complexity and care and that You know us with such intimacy. We love You and trust You with our lives.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Isaiah 53

But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)

  • Isaiah 53 revealed Jesus as the Messiah. Through this chapter, we recognize Jesus as the Savior, who alone has the power to change lives. Jesus is the One who was wounded for our transgression, bruised for our iniquities. He was the Savior who died for us on the cross. Through Him, we experienced the salvation that changes lives, forgives sins, and gives abundant life to all who trust in Him.

  • In the beginning, many of us had no interest in spiritual things. Our lives revolved around earthly things and worldly pleasures. Then we were invited to church, where we found the love and prayers of the people to be irresistible. After some spiritual struggle, we trusted Jesus as our Savior. There is a saving change wrought in us. We began to recognize and share Jesus, the Messiah of Isaiah 53. We often exclaimed, “That’s Him! That’s Jesus!” Indeed, it is Jesus.

  • Oh God, we often struggle with this idea of Jesus as Savior. We know He is a good man, but we need to see that He is more than that. Please show us through the Bible how we can know for sure who Jesus is. The Spirit of God uses the Word of God to change hearts, and some of us knew Jesus as our Messiah through Isaiah 53.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Images of Creation

To what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, When the morning stars sang together, And all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:6-7)

  • When God revealed Himself to Job, He wisely used the images of creation. Job responded with repentance and an acknowledgement of the greatness and glory of God. Job repented for questioning God.

  • God's ways are always higher than our ways. And He always has a purpose for everything that is happening. Instead of questioning Him, let us accept His Sovereignty and the execution of His plan. Let us accept His will for us and believe He will keep His promises to us.

  • “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork” (Ps. 19:1). When we behold the wonders of creation, the flowers that bloom, the raindrops as they fall; the spacious sky and life's perpetuation, we cannot doubt that God controls it all. Let us praise God who made such beauty for us to enjoy! As we behold the radiant sun by day or the star-studded sky at night, let us be in awe and worship the Creator.

  • The beauty of creation always gives us reasons to sing God’s praise.

Friday, July 5, 2013

We Can Pray

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. (Psalm 23:4)
  • The Lord was near when we talk with Him through prayer.
  •  In the terrifying moments of life (and all the other moments as well), nothing can bring comfort to the hurting heart like the reality of God’s presence and care.
  • David wrote, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me”.
  • When fear is overwhelming, the Lord is there.
  • His comforting presence will carry us through our deepest trials.
  • When we have peace with the LORD God, we can always sing, It is well, it is well with my soul.”

Monday, July 1, 2013

Start Over

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

  • All of us must learn to cope with defeat and self-condemnation following a spiritual collapse.
  •  But how can we recover from grieving God and others, along with disappointing ourselves?
  •  The apostle John wrote, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”.
  •  God forgives us because Jesus Christ paid the price for our sins.
  •  God’s pardon sets us free to begin again.
  •  God’s pardon makes us focus on today’s opportunity rather than yesterday’s defeat.
  •  God’s faithful cleansing allows us to start over with a pure heart.
  •  So, instead of living in the shadows of yesterday, let us walk in the light of today and the hope of tomorrow.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Together We Live and Work

For in fact the body is not one member but many. (1 Corinthians 12:14)

  • Each of us has been uniquely gifted with the capacity to make a contribution to the work of Christ.
  • We were never intended to live in isolation but to work together to become a great force for God and the advance of His cause.
  • The apostle Paul reminded us, the body of Christ “is not one member but many”.
  • All of us are to use our gifts to serve one another so that together we can make a significant difference in our world.
  • Let us put our giftedness to work, joyfully cooperate with the giftedness of those around us, and let the wind of the Spirit use us for His glory!
  • Lord, teach us to use our strengths in cooperation with the strengths of others.
  • Help us to serve as one so that we might know the joy of the power of our togetherness for Your name’s sake and the advance of Your kingdom.
  • We can accomplish more together than we can alone.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Power of God's Care

He stretches out the north over empty space; He hangs the earth on nothing. (Job 26:7)

  • The Earth is so heavy. But there is nothing supporting it.
  • It spins on its axis at 1,000 miles per hour in its orbit around the sun. But it remains unnoticed in the midst of our concerns about health, relationships, and how to pay our bills.
  • The OT Job did it differently. He repeatedly considered God’s creation in his struggle to make sense of the loss of his health, his wealth, and his children.
  • The creation itself did not answer Job’s questions.
  • But it pointed him to God the Creator, who alone could respond with help and hope.
  • God who upholds the universe by the word of His power is in control of our everyday lives. All our experiences are under God’s power and love.
  • God in His infinite power created the world out of nothing and uphold it by His word. But God is also in control of every part of our lives.
  • When we reflect on the power of God’s creation, we will see the power of His care for us. 

    Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? (Matthew 6:30)

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Play in Pain

Though He causes grief, Yet He will show compassion according to the multitude of His mercies. (Lamentations 3:32)

  • In life, we may face sorrow, pain, and hardship.
  • But we don’t have to sink into self-pity.
  • The same God who allows our suffering will also shower us with His compassion.
  • With God’s love lifting us up, we can play in pain.
  • Along life’s pathway, many troubles will come.
  • But God will help us bear.
  • Our God will either spare us from suffering, or give us the grace to bear it.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Be Strong In The Lord

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. (1 Corinthians 16:13)

  • We try living up to the name ‘man’.
  • We try to be strong and macho.
  • But often it is just a fa├žade.
  • For all our effort, we realize we don’t measure up.
  • Underneath the bravado, we harbor a host of fears, insecurities, and shortcomings.
  • Much of our manliness is pure bluff.
  • Paul was man enough to admit it: “We also are weak,” (2 Cor. 13:4).
  • That is not pious chatter.
  • It is a humbling fact.
  • But Paul insisted here that we are to be men of courage.
  • How can we be the strong person that God meant for us to be?
  • Only by putting ourselves in God’s hands.
  • Only by asking Him to make us that way through His power and enablement.
  • May the Lord God give us courage through His conquering Spirit.
  • May He make us an overcomer in power within us.
  • True strength is the power of God in the soul.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Eating God's Word

How sweet are Your words to my taste, Sweeter than honey to my mouth! (Psalm 119:103)

  • Some of us are eating too fast.
  • We need to slow down and enjoy our meal.
  • We need to take the time to savor every bite.
  • Some of us rush through reading God’s Word without really savoring it.
  • The psalmist said, “How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
  • That sounds great!
  • What are the benefits of delighting in the rich food of Scripture?
  • A daily meal of God’s Word helps to keep anxiety, pride, fear, and temptation from plaguing our undernourished hearts.
  • It helps to strengthens us for a victorious journey.
  • The Word of God gives us wisdom and understanding.
  • It helps restrain our feet from evil.
  • Our digestive system distributes nutrients to our bodies.
  • God’s Word, when digested, nourishes our minds, our emotions, and our will.
  • It is important to read God’s Word at a time and in a place where we can really fellowship with God.
  • Let us take the time and enjoy savoring the richness of God’s Word.
  • Let us thank God the Father for the gift of His Word.
  • Let us take the time to savor the richness of its meaning.
  • Let us learn to listen to His voice.
  • God’s Word provides the ingredients we need to thrive spiritually.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Knowing God and serving Him

That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death (Philippians 3:10)

  • Paul’s letter to the Philippians reveals a heart and purpose that never diminished with time: “That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death”.
  • From the root of Paul’s relationship with Jesus came the fruit of his undiminished fervor that others be guided to faith in Him.
  • He rejoiced to share the gospel.
  • He was encouraged that others became bolder because of him.
  • If our goal is merely service for the Lord, we may burn out somewhere along the line.
  • But if our purpose, like Paul’s, is to know Christ and love Him, we will find that He will give us the strength to make Him known to others.
  • Let us joyfully press on in the strength God gives.
  • Let us learn to know our Father God in all His fullness.
  • Let us love Him completely.
  • Our relationship with our Father God is the basis for our service for Him.
  • Let us not serve Him out of our own strength.
  • Let us learn from Christ and then make Him known.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Abundant Life in Christ

I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)

  • Some of us are afraid to get too excited about spiritual things.
  • But there is nothing more worthy of our enthusiasm than who Christ is and what He did for us.
  • Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly”.
  • At any age, we have a gift from our Savior that is worth celebrating.
  • Our salvation is something to get excited about!
  • May our Father in Heaven fill our heart with the joy of Christ.
  • May our abundant life in Christ reach out to others around us.
  • If we know Christ, we always have a reason to celebrate.
  • Life is never boring with Christ.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Love God in return

For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again. (2 Corinthians 5:14-15)

  • We can’t earn God’s love and grace.
  • But God has lavished them on us.
  • We can only love Him in return, by living for Him.
  • This includes drawing near to Him, listening to His Word, serving Him, and obeying Him out of gratitude and love.
  • As debtors, we are called to live each day for Jesus who gave Himself for us.
  • Those who know God’s grace show God’s grace.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Can We Be Sure of Our Eternal Safety?

That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)

  • Can we be absolutely sure in this life of eternal safety?
  • Yes.
  • We can be absolutely sure now of our eternal life in the Home that Jesus went to prepare.
  • Let us carefully and prayerfully read John 3:16 and Romans 10:9-10.
  • We must believe in the finished work of Christ for us.
  • We must trust by God’s grace to meet us in that Home of which He said, “I go to prepare a place for you.”
  • We must be confident that in this life we can have assurance of eternal safety.
  • Consider what John 3:16 and Romans 10:9-10 mean for our eternal destiny.
  • God desires to give us the confidence that our sin is forgiven.
  • God desires that after death we will be with Him forever.
  • Lives rooted in God’s unchanging grace can never be uprooted.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

God's Wonderful Provision

So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. (Matthew 6:28-29)

  • Some cities and countries are often seen busy preparing festivals to welcome the spring flowers.
  • Flowers often remind us that summer is on the way and with it will come even more flowers to delight our eyes.
  • Flowers are also wonderful reminders of the grace of God in our lives.
  • Our Lord used the lilies of the field to remind us of the provision of our heavenly Father.
  • In His great Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “Consider the lilies of the field . . . ; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. . . . Will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?” (Matt. 6:28-30).
  • Flowers alert us to the end of winter and the beginning of spring.
  • They also remind us of the gracious God upon whom we can depend to provide food, clothing, and shelter.
  • In trees and flowers of the field, in creatures large and small, we trace the watchful care of Him Who planned and made them all.
  • If Jesus is concerned about flowers and birds, He certainly cares about us.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Pray For Our Loved Ones

But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, (Matthew 5:44)
  • Many of our brothers and sisters around the world suffer persecution.
  • They live in danger every day simply because they love Jesus and want others to know Him too.
  • But there is another form of persecution.
  • It may not be life-threatening, but it is heartbreaking.
  • It is the persecution from our non-Christian family members.
  • When our loved ones ridicule our faith and mock us for what we believe and how we express our love for God, we feel rejected and unloved.
  • “All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (2 Tim. 3:12).
  • And rejection will come from those we love too (Matt. 10:34-36).
  • When the people we love reject the God we love, the rejection feels personal.
  • Jesus told us to pray for those who persecute us (Matt. 5:44).
  • That includes more than strangers who hate us.
  • God is able to give us grace to persevere through persecution, even from our love ones.
  • They may mock our message.
  • But they can’t stop our prayers for them.
  • And we will pray earnestly for them.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

All Who Are In The Graves Will Hear His Voice

John 5:24-30

The Lord Jesus now gives further teaching on His power to raise the dead and about His authority to judge the world.

He speaks in these verses of two resurrections:
  • The bringing of dead sinners to spiritual life, and
  • The resurrection of all mankind at His second coming.
When we are born again, we are brought out of a state of spiritual death into life. God freely forgives us our sins and we no longer fear judgment.

Spiritual life comes through hearing the voice of the Son of God through His Word.

The Lord Jesus said, “The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live”.

Preaching is very important for us and must never be neglected in our churches or despised.

The Lord Jesus went on to speak of His second coming when He will come with a great shout and when all the dead will be raised.

“All who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth — those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation."

Everyone who has ever lived will hear His voice, even though they have returned to dust!

That voice brings forth life and this is a great miracle!

Lazarus, 4 days dead, heard Christ's voice and was raised!

For the Christian, Christ's coming will be glorious indeed!

We shall see our blessed Saviour.

We shall have new resurrection bodies that will never know pain, illness or death.

What a wonderful salvation!

Can we help but love and praise the Lord?

Saturday, February 16, 2013

He Who Comes From Above Is Above All

John 3:25-36

John told his disciples concerning the Lord Jesus, “He must increase, but I must decrease”. He rejoiced that the multitudes were now following the King whose way he had prepared.

John said of Jesus, “He who comes from above is above all.” Again he said, “He who comes from heaven is above all”.

The Lord Jesus is more than a prophet. He is the holy Son of God who came down from Heaven. He is above the Herald who told the people of His coming.

John had an earthly origin. He was frail and sinful, though God did speak through him. The Lord Jesus, by contrast, is perfect and sinless.

The message that we must proclaim is that Christ is above all.

Christ is the only begotten Son of God. He is the brightness of His Father's glory; He is the express image of His Person.

Christ was in the beginning with God. And all things were made through Him.

He is above all because the Father loves Him and has given all things into His hand. He is above all because He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.

The message of the love of God, who gave His beloved Son to die for sinners, is wonderful!

John testified about Jesus who came down from Heaven.

But most people rejected his testimony.

The vast majority today continue to reject Christ and they do so at their peril!

The chapter closes with a solemn warning about the wrath of God: He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.

Only the Lord Jesus is able to save sinners. Those who refuse to trust in Him have the wrath of God hanging over them. They are condemned and have no hope!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Whatever He Says to You, Do it

John 2:1-12

Nathaniel was from Cana in Galilee.

On the third day after he met the Lord Jesus, there was a wedding in his home town, which was about eight miles north of Nazareth. It was at this wedding that Jesus performed his first miracle. Jesus’ first miracle was at Cana!

Through this first miracle the Lord Jesus manifested His glory.

His disciples believed in Him. They began to understand that the Lord Jesus was no mere man or prophet that they were following, but the almighty Son of God!

Mary told the Lord Jesus that they had run out of wine.

Jesus responded by saying, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with me? My hour has not yet come”.

The Lord Jesus was not showing any disrespect to Mary in the manner of His response. The way He used the word “woman” was in a tender and loving manner.

The Lord Jesus used the expression 'My hour has not yet come' in relation to His death on the cross and His victory over death. His resurrection was the greatest of all His miracles.

The Lord Jesus never lost sight of the fact that He had come to earth to suffer and to die on the cross in order to save sinners.

Mary pointed people to her Son and said to the servants at the wedding, “Whatever He says to you, do it”.

Those servants obeyed the Lord Jesus and drew from the waterpots as He had instructed and found that a wonderful miracle had taken place. Blessing comes through obedience to His Word!

Is God challenging us as we read the Bible or through a sermon we have recently heard? — “Whatever he says to you, do it.”

The glory of the Lord Jesus was revealed to His disciples and to the wedding guests through this miracle. (n) They needed to see that the Son of Mary was no mere man, but also the Son of God.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

In the Beginning was the Word

John 1:1-5

John introduces us to the Lord Jesus Christ by describing Him as the Word: “In the beginning was the Word”.

This title is given to Jesus because God the Father reveals Himself through Christ and speaks through Him.

John leaves us in no doubt concerning the identity of the Lord Jesus: “The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God”

Christ was with God before the universe was made and He has always been with God because He is God.

These verses not only inform us that the Lord Jesus is God, but also that He made all things: “All things were made through Him”.

Creation is the work of the Trinity — Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This world did not come into existence by accident! Human life did not evolve from simple, primitive cells over millions of years. Our great Savior created the whole universe and all life in it.

“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men”.

The Lord Jesus is also the Giver of life. He brings light to men who are in darkness because of sin. He gives them spiritual Life. He gives them spiritual light or understanding. Jesus is the Life who alone gives spiritual life. He is the Light who gives spiritual understanding. There is no way of salvation from our sin except through trusting in Him.

“And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.”

The darkness of this world cannot defeat the Light of Christ. He is altogether wonderful and glorious.

Let us now worship our great Savior and bring to Him our grateful praises!

Monday, January 21, 2013

The Light Was Good

"God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness."
- Genesis 1:4 -

"Let there be light."

Light is good. 

We who enjoy it should be more grateful.

We should see more of God in it and by it.

Light is sweet.

But the gospel light is infinitely more precious.

Gospel light reveals eternal things, and ministers to our immortal natures.

When the Holy Spirit gives us spiritual light, He opens our eyes to behold the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

We behold sin in its true colors, and ourselves in our real position.

We see the Most Holy God as He reveals Himself, the plan of mercy as He propounds it, and the world to come as the Word describes it.

Spiritual light has many beams and prismatic colors.

It brings knowledge, joy, holiness, or life, all are divinely good.

May the Lord God give us more of light, and more of Himself, the true light.

Light and darkness have no communion.

God has divided them.

The Sons of light must not have fellowship with deeds, doctrines, or deceits of darkness.

The Children of the day must be sober, honest, and bold in their Lord's work, leaving the works of darkness to those who shall dwell in it forever.

The Churches should by discipline divide the light from the darkness.

In judgment, in action, in hearing, in teaching, in association, we must discern between the precious and the vile.

We should maintain the great distinction which the Lord made upon the world's first day.

May the Lord God be our light throughout our whole life.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Promised Rest

"The manna stopped the day after they ate this food from the land; there was no longer any manna for the Israelites, but that year they ate the produce of Canaan."
- Joshua 5:12 -

Israel's weary wanderings were all over.

The promised rest was attained.

No more moving tents, fiery serpents, fierce Amalekites, and howling wildernesses.

They had come to the land which flowed with milk and honey, and they ate the old corn of the land.

Joyful is the prospect.

To be with the Lord Jesus in the rest is a cheering hope indeed.

Let us banish every fearful thought.

Let us rejoice with exceeding great joy.

We shall be forever with the Lord.

Let us feed on Jesus, and eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Last Adam

So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. - 1 Corinthians 15:45 -

Adam is the covenant head and representative of the human race under the law of work.

Under the law of grace, every redeemed soul is one with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus is the last Adam.

He is the Substitute of the elect in the new covenant of love.

Whatever Jesus had done, He had done it for the whole body of His Church.

We were crucified in Him and buried with Him (Col. 2:10-13).

We are risen with Him and ascended with Him to the seats on high (Eph. 2:6).

The Church has thus fulfilled the law.

The Church is thus accepted in the beloved.

The Church is regarded with complacency by the just Jehovah.

He views her in Jesus, and does not look upon her as separate from her covenant head.

As the Anointed Redeemer of Israel, Jesus has nothing distinct from His Church.

All that He has, He holds for her.

All that He is or does, is ours as well as His.

Here is the foundation of the covenant of grace.

This gracious system of representation and substitution is the very groundwork of the gospel of our salvation.

And we are to receive it with strong faith and rapturous joy.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

God Keeps His Promises

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
- Isaiah 41:10 -

God is able to do all things.

We never need to fear.

The strength of man shall never be able to overcome the power of God.

We have enough reason to abide firm in our faith.

God has promised to supply us with daily strength.

He will fulfill His promises.

God shall never grow weary.

He will support His children.

He will never fail us.

He has put His promise on record.

Let us doubt no longer.

He is our God and our strength,