I saw the light

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. […] Then the God of peace will be with you.   Philippians 4:8-9

We are coming to the end of the year and it is the time where we are feeling festive and blissful. We put down the bad and the ugly behind,  looking forward to a new beginning. And that’s really good. The bible says, fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable, what is right and what is pure and lovely. What is admirable and things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

little big friendsYou see, we are being constantly ‘bombarded’ by terrors, uncertainty, diseases/viruses, and so many other negative things, that if we dont have a counter, we will then go on a slow spiral down into depression and sickness. Your mind will be trouble, your spirit will be down and finally sickness appears for a final countdown.

Happy thoughts!

That’s what the world can offer at best, keeping fixing on whatever happy thoughts you can gather and keep replaying in your mind. But dear brother and sisters, we have something even more power and everlasting. What is more true and right and pure and lovely and admirable and excellent and worthy of praise?

It is this: That God, Christ Jesus, Himself, left and gave up His own majesty and divinity to come into this world. Willing suffered at the hands of the very creation He wanted to save. To redeem us from our sin by taking our sin on Himself and suffered its consequences. After exhausting all the judgement and punishments on our behalf, Christ Jesus died a sorrowful death.

Bita in the yard

By His death – we are given life, by His strips – we are healed, by his sorrows – we rejoice. Out of love, to save you and I from eternal damnation. Think of such thoughts:

  • That you are so preciously loved that Christ Jesus so willing to die in your place.
  • That God will redeem you out of whatever bad situation you are in because He had redeemed you from the worst.
  • That God Himself will restore what you have lost and will be above what you have originally lost.
  • That Christ has done all that needs to be done, we are rest fully in His perfect work.
  • That you are not caringly nurtured, truly blessed,  and highly favored because you are children of the Almighty God.
  • That you are forever, saved and redeemed for eternity in heaven, a place Christ personally are preparing for you.
  • That we have such an awesome and wonderful God that is so worthy of praise.

Such are the happy (excellent) thoughts!

Have a blessed Christmas full of revelation of Christ Jesus!

Closing

Recently, I haven’t had much time to write, ponder or reflect. I probably have been too caught up by the world too. But the Lord is so good that I have is this wonderfully nudging about “Through Christ”, that I just cannot not ignore.

God, the Father is holy beyond reach of us mere sinful humans; the Holy Spirit is invisible and silent. That is, why Jesus Christ came and He is the very visible image or representation of the invisible God (Col :15). There is just no way for lowly human beings to reach out to a high holy God. A simple bible search of “through Christ” yields 70 very powerful passages:

John 1:17

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

You know the message God sent to the people of Israel, announcing the good news of peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all.

and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord.

[ Paul’s Longing to Visit Rome ] First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.

This will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.

This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile,

and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished—

[ Peace and Hope ] Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord JesusChrist, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

[ Death Through Adam, Life Through Christ ] Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—

For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

Line of Reflection

So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.

Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.

[ Life Through the Spirit ] Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,

because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.

[ Paul’s Anguish Over Israel ] I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit—

Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.

I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done—

by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit of God. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ.

to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.

Even if you had ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel.

yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.

 Morning Frost

The entire victorious Christian living; in fact, the key to the gospel is found within these 70 Scriptures. Christianity is not designed to be difficult. The Lord did not put His gift of eternal heavenly salvation as a trophy high on the podium, only for ‘champions’ who can manage to attain. This is not only impossible, but a ultimate lie.

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:8-10

But Jesus Christ came, and deliver that trophy personally. Through His bloodied hands…

 

My heart cries with Paris today

By now, most would have read about yet another horrific terrorist attack on Paris, one of the most iconic cities in the world. The disgust and sadness that followed, where unarmed civilians were brutally and calmly slaughtered were obvious. It is incomprehensible for fellow human beings firing assault rifles into unwary and inoffensive everyday-crowds of people. Even trained soldiers shudder at such thoughts.

The Islamic-State (IS) has claimed responsibility for the attacks. Their call for Jihad, or “holy-war” is anything but holy. The attacks at a stadium, concert hall and cafes and restaurants in northern and eastern Paris where over a 120 were killed in cold-blood, is their way of fighting a “war”.

While much has been said and done, it’s too little, too late. I would insist that the top Islamic bodies and institutions condemn, re-educate and fight the theological extremism driving these terrors. However, in my spirit, I know I am barking up the wrong (fruitless) tree.

So, will the real gospel of Peace please stand up.

A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s amour so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

Therefore, put on every piece of God’s amour so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body amour of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. (For shoes, put on the readiness to preach the Good News of peace with God.) In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.   Ephesian 6:10-18

13.11.2015With the full amour of God, I used to think of the sandals/shoes to be the least important, preferring to focus on the more gung-ho sword or shield. Ignorantly, I missed the point that the solider and his entire amour is propped up solely by these very shoes-> the gospel or Good News of Peace, with God.

So, what’s so important about the gospel of Peace?

You see, the gospel of peace is the very foundation; the message that Jesus Christ gave Himself to those who would trust and believe in Him (John 14:27; Romans 6:22-23). This gospel of Peace establish our standing and assurance from God-the Father that we are His children and nothing can snatch us out of His hands (John 10:29; 1 John 5:13). The Good News outlines clearly what is required to become a child of God, that God is not angrily-unforgiving and that nothing more is required to be made right (relationship) with the Most High God. (Romans 10:5–10).

The gospel of Peace for us believers has a 2-fold function: both defensive and offensive. On the defensive, in order to defend ourselves against the accusations and “flaming arrows of the evil one”, we must have the confidence in the position of Jesus Christ (as God and Son) and also our position in Christ (the redeemed saved by grace). We must understand the grace and mercy of God, that salvation through Christ is fixed solely on God’s goodness, not based on our own abilities, worthiness or what we have done (Titus 3:5).

On the offensive, we have to bring this gospel of Peace-Jesus Christ to the world. We need to let people know that they will never be able to buy or earn their way into heaven (Ephesians 2:8-9). Everything has been paid by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross (Colossians 2:13-15); they just need to simply believe in Him. That’s it!

Paris

One of the main reason why such terrorism happens is because there are some very grave believes going around propagating. False ideologies and extremism that taught people to willingly commit cold-blooded mass-murders and blowing themselves up for a cause. We must counter these wrong believes that eternal salvation can be earned, a price able to be paid, to achieve a good position with a holy God; to have an access to express elevator into the heaven (with bloodied hands).

We need to let them know there is a better, surer way and only Way-> Jesus Christ, Who is  the very gospel of Peace. Only when we have the peace with God, can we have real peace with ourselves and people around us.

For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God freely and graciously declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. Romans 3:23-25

For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’   Matthew 25:35-36

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I had the privilege of paying a visit to a dear missionary in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Visiting their work in the field was an experience that still have me pondering with my own life’s priorities and soul-searching on my life’s journey. It was a sudden awakening from a (first world) bubble wrap into the sad reality of the real (third) world. Much of what we have taken for granted as basic and a necessity is “godsend” in some parts of the world.

It is quite unimaginable for young children to grow up literally on piles of rubbish and playing in dirt. These children have no clean water to drink or enough food to eat, most are scruffy and dirty. Birthed into impoverished families, they have no school and at a young age, they are forced to help provide for their families by scavenging through rubbish or work as child-labour.

On the contrary, we are so blessed but yet materialistically clamouring for more. For me, it took a rubbish dump site (where families lived), some simple food for feeding and the children’s laughter to provoke me into repentance. You see, we just cannot turn a blind eye to the abject poverty in our (prosperous) midst; the elephant in the room. We cannot deny what God, and the Holy Spirit who is in us, wants to do; to help out in whatever way we can. We just cannot bask in the glory of the Lord, overflowing with love and grace we have received throughput Christ, and yet do nothing at all. This is because Christ’s compassion for the needy is also bursting from within.

Our Lord Jesus fed the 5,000 in the gospels because he had compassion on them. More importantly, He fed the people through His disciples (Matthew 14:13-21). Similarly, we are His current disciples here on earth. Dear God’s beloveds, it is now up to you and me… to spread the Lord’s goodness through us. 

 

My wife just made a jar of highly delectable cookies. I had more (with a revelation) than just filling my tummy. 😛

My current favourite-est song… you need to hear this!

Verse 1
I cast my mind to Calvary.
Where Jesus bled and died for me.
I see His wounds, His hands, His feet.
My Saviour on that cursed tree.

Verse 2
His body bound and drenched in tears.
They laid Him down in Joseph’s tomb.
The entrance sealed by heavy stone.
Messiah still and all alone.

Chorus
O praise the name of the Lord our God!
O praise His name forever more!
For endless days we will sing Your praise!
Oh Lord, oh Lord our God!

Verse 3
And then on the third at break of dawn,
The Son of heaven rose again.
O trampled death where is your sting?
The angels roar for Christ the King.

Chorus

Verse 4
He shall return in robes of white,
The blazing Son shall pierce the night.
And I will rise among the saints,
My gaze transfixed on Jesus’ face…

Chorus

Oh Lord, oh Lord our God.
Oh Lord, oh Lord our God.

For chords, see here.

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Strong’s Concordance
Anástasis: a standing up, i.e. a resurrection, a raising up, rising

Original Word: ἀνάστασις, εως, ἡ
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
Transliteration: anastasis
Phonetic Spelling: (an-as’-tas-is)
Short Definition: a rising again, resurrection
Definition: a rising again, resurrection.

Nebelstimmung

See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure.

Everyone who sins is breaking God’s law, for all sin is contrary to the law of God. And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in him. Anyone who continues to live in him will not sin. But anyone who keeps on sinning does not know him or understand who he is.

Dear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous. But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God. So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God.   1 John 3:1-10 (NLT)

UntitledVery often, we are taught or understood concepts the wrong way up. We put the cart before the horse, and wonder why are we not experiencing a victorious Christian life that we should? You see, there are many lessons we have grossly misunderstood, contrary to what the Bible says in 1 John 3:1-10 (NLT), written by a disciple “whom Jesus loved”.

Firstly, we must have the knowledge that we, the children of God, are dearly loved by the Father. We are not orphans fending for ourselves or fighting and sacrificing ourselves to gain the God’s acceptance. We already have the Father’s favour! We already gained the Father’s love. Only children who knows they are loved are empowered to venture into life without always looking behind their backs.

Secondly, we are born into sin because of Adam’s fall, and are sinners because we are in sin. But because Jesus Christ came to redeem us from sin, we are no longer in sinners. This is solely by the blood of Christ that washed our sin away (past, present and future), we are no longer sinners, EVEN if we sin. However, we are not to live sinful since we have nothing more to do with sin, instead to new a life. Romans 6:1-4

However, if we are stagnant in sin, without guilt, without intention of getting out or even enjoying in a sinful lifestyle over long periods of time, then we have no revelation of who the Father really is or how much Christ had done for us.

A pig who loves the mud pool, even though if it is cleaned, will jump back into the mud pool the first opportunity it gets. But a sheep will never want to go near a mud pool, even if it is filthy. If it fell into a mud pool, the sheep will be miserable and will want to get out of the mud the first chance it gets. It is about who you are and knowing who you are; Christ has changed us from a pig to a sheep; so don’t behave still like a pig, you sheep!

Take a walk on the wild side

So the very key of this message is “Do you want a victories Christian Life? Do you really know the Father’s heart and do you really know Jesus Christ’s love for you?”

Let’s pray: Our Father in heaven, we know you love us and gave Your very best- Jesus Christ your only Son to sacrifice on the cross for us. Christ suffered and died for us so that we can live a victorious and abundant life. Help us to see more of Your love, demonstrated by Jesus Christ. Holy Spirit guide and open our hearts to know more from the Bible and resources that reveal the grace and love of the Father and the Son. In Jesus’ name. Amen.