I Still Have Many Things to Tell You

Friends;

May the peace and mercy of our Lord be with you. Here, we dwell on the fact that God still has many things to tell us, individually! The key verse is found in John 16, verse 12 – “I still have many things to tell you,…”. God has still so much to reveal today…and He will reveal them to you freely, but only if you are thirsty to come to the Water of Life.

May He give you the thirst that opens the floodgate of wisdom and knowledge.

In His Name. AMEN.

The Truth Shall Set You Free: What Did Jesus Mean?

My Dear Friends,
Our Lord Jesus speaks. He speaks! Oh I pray that He grants you and me an understanding, for He alone has the Words of Life. May God the Father, and Jesus our Lord bless you mightily, and may God Himself speak out of this sharing the words that He alone knows you need to hear today. For we are all flesh, but He the Spirit knows all things, and He alone is true.

In Jesus Name. AMEN.

What Do You Ask? Secrets from Your Prayers

Friends;

May God in His mercy bless you in the name of Jesus-Christ our Lord. I thank Him for His mercy. As we study the exchange between God and Solomon, I pray that the Father give us true desires as He did to Solomon, so that we might all be primarily preoccupied with our duties as children and servants of His Kingdom. In His Name. AMEN.

Do Not Be Ashamed – YouTube Video

Friends;

Blessings in the name of Jesus. While it’s been a while since an article has been posted here, I praise God that He has continued to use me for His work, overcoming the unbearable weakness of my flesh. Through COVID-19, He has allowed us to record sharings which we will now be posting on YouTube and here. May He bless you through this one entitled “Do Not be Ashamed of the Testimony: Share in the Suffering”. The main passage is 2 Timothy 1.

In His Name. AMEN.

CORONAVIRUS: IT IS NOT ENOUGH TO CLAIM GOD’S PROMISES

Friends;

May the grace of God be upon you, in the name of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. The notion of God’s protection has taken on a whole different dimension in light of the Coronavirus outbreak. It certainly goes without saying that we should all follow the practical tips our officials are giving us, and apply some common sanitary sense.

But with the Lord’s permission, I would like to give you, my dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, a very important advice:

DO NOT JUST CLAIM GOD’S PROMISES

Yes, you can comb through the Bible and find all the promises of God’s protection. You may recite them, claim them, appropriate them for you and your family. BUT THAT IS STILL NOT ENOUGH.

You need to TALK TO GOD. You need TO PRAY FOR PROTECTION. You need to COMMUNICATE WITH GOD. Simply claiming God’s promises without speaking to Him about the issue for which you are claiming them is more a reflection of your reliance on yourself (i.e. how strongly you can claim them, how high your faith may reach, or even how well you can memorize them), rather than your reliance on God.

How about speaking with Him about this problem in prayer? How about petitioning for you, your family, and for your neighbors? How about seeking insight from God as to why this is happening, rather than conjecturing with your own mind? 

It is easy to recite and to declare Bible verses boldly. But where is the humble Spirit to kneel at the Lord’s feet to intercede and to listen? 

Our Lord Jesus is a personal Lord. GOD our Father, is a GOD OF RELATIONSHIPS. Do not just attempt to take what is HIS (i.e. His promises). BE WITH HIM in PRAYER.

BE WITH HIM IN PRAYER MY DEAR FRIENDS.

And let His peace guide you. Let Him reveal you His secrets (if He so chooses). Let Him show you how you should navigate and how you should strengthen your brothers and sisters, and why not, even the unbelievers. For just as He did with the Apostle Paul, when He committed to him all the souls on the ship he was traveling on, who knows whether He will commit to you some souls for their protection?

Acts 27:23,24last night an angel of the God I [Paul] belong to and serve stood by me 24 and said, ‘Don’t be afraid, Paul. It is necessary for you to appear before Caesar. And indeed, God has graciously given you all those who are sailing with you.’

Run to the Father. PRAY. Talk to HIM. SEEK HIM.

In His name.

AMEN.

No Prosperity Despite Your Prayers

Dear Brothers and Sisters;

May the peace and grace of God our Father, and of our Lord Jesus-Christ be with you. This letter is addressed primarily to married couples, husbands and wives. It is also addressed to those of you who are aspiring to get married soon. I pray through my Lord Jesus that He grants me the love and wisdom to share with you one of the reasons your genuine prayers, as a married individual, may go unanswered.

It has to do with your spouse, and how you treat her (or him). God, through the prophet Malachi said the following to the Jews.

Malachi 2:13This is another thing you do. You are covering the Lord’s altar with tears, with weeping and groaning, because he no longer respects your offerings or receives them gladly from your hands.

In the Book of Malachi, God was really displeased with the Jews. In the verse above, He was no longer accepting the offerings from the people. Why? Please note that the people were still making offerings in this verse. In addition, note that the fact that God was refusing their offerings had a very clear impact on the lives of the people. And that impact brought them to tears!

To translate in today’s terms, you may understand the verse above as no longer receiving blessings from God, despite your prayers, your singing, and your work at Church, and even your good deeds in your community! Why?

You pray genuinely, but your situation is not improving. You are generous in the community, but it does not seem to matter. Your health takes a dive. Your business does not prosper. None of your plans seem to work. You no longer have favor from anyone. Nothing is working and therefore, you are brought down to tears like the Jews in Malachi above.

And therefore, just like them, you are wondering why God is not hearing you!

Malachi 2:14And you ask, “Why?”

The answer: Because of the way you are treating your spouse!

Malachi 3:14,15And you ask, “Why?” Because even though the Lord has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, you have acted treacherously against her. She was your marriage partner and your wife by covenant. 15 Didn’t God make them one and give them a portion of spirit?

Acting treacherously against your spouse is a sure way to damage your relationship with God, and there are at least two reasons given.

 First: God was a witness of your marriage and made you one

God was a witness between the two of you when you got married. Naturally, we are not speaking of marriages where God was not a witness, of which, I am sure, there are many of such today. But if, with the little you knew when you got married, you did invoke God as you made the covenant of marriage, then it is safe assume that God was indeed a witness! And acting treacherously against your spouse is a disregard for who God, who was a witness, is!

Second: You are robbing God from what He is seeking: Godly Offspring

Malachi 2:15Didn’t God make them one and give them a portion of spirit? What is the one seeking? Godly offspring.

God is seeking Godly offspring. He is a witness of a marriage and makes the two one. He then goes straight to work to unite these two individuals, given them His Spirit (this is a mysterious thing, and beyond my capacity to understand, for the language in the verse seems to indicate that God gives a spirit that is only shared between the two individuals, making them truly one!).

This unity will ensure Godly offspring, what God is seeking…until one starts to deal treacherously against the other. The husband no longer loves his wife. The wife has no more reverence for her husband.

You are breaking what God is building! You dishonor your spouse, make light of that Spirit that unites you, jeopardizing God’s plan to have God-fearing children…and you expect to be prosperous? You expect to be heard? No, NOOO, NOOOOO…YOU WILL NOT BE HEARD!

Repent, and deal kindly with your spouse. Honor your husband. Love your wife. Ask for your forgiveness, for He is willing to pardon. He will hear you.

AND ONLY THEN, YOU CAN EXPECT TO BE HEARD. For you will be once again back on track to bring up Godly offspring. Children who fear Him, children who revere Him.

May the Lord of Mercy bless you all. AMEN.

What’s the Use Anyway?

Dear Friends;

May God the Father, and Jesus our Lord be blessed, and may the Lord sanctify you and give you a heart to understand His Will.

Yes, what’s the use of serving God? What’s the use of enduring suffering and injustice for His name, while others seem to have it easy. While others, who do not fear Him, actually prosper?

There is nothing new under the sun, and neither are these questions. Look at what the Jews used to say in the times of Malachi.

Malachi 3:14,15 – “It is useless to serve God. What have we gained by keeping his requirements and walking mournfully before the Lord of Armies? 15 So now we consider the arrogant to be fortunate. Not only do those who commit wickedness prosper, they even test God and escape.”

Do not fall into that sin. It is a death trap! While many of the Jews were speaking and thinking that way, a few did the opposite…

Malachi 3:16At that time those who feared the Lord spoke to one another.

And God took notice

Malachi 3:16The Lord took notice and listened. So a book of remembrance was written before him for those who feared the Lord and had high regard for his name.

Friends; think very carefully about what you are thinking and harboring in your heart. The Lord may seem quiet at times, but He takes notice and listens.

Malachi 3:17 “They will be mine,” says the Lord of Armies, “my own possession on the day I am preparing. I will have compassion on them as a man has compassion on his son who serves him.

In His Name. AMEN.

Should Christians Celebrate Christmas?

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ;

May the grace and peace of God our Father, and of our Lord Jesus-Christ be with you. I thank the Father of Lights, in the multitude of His mercies toward me, for allowing me to write these few lines concerning Christmas, a widely celebrated holiday. The question before us is whether Christians should celebrate Christmas.

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DISCLAIMER: At the end of this article, you will find comments from readers who disagree with the position of this article. We strongly encourage you to read their views as well, and provide your “scripture-based” feedback, if you have one (regardless of whether you agree or disagree with this article). God bless you and may His Spirit ALONE guide you in TRUTH!

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This question is not a trivial one, and for many, it is a sensitive one. Many indeed have already written extensively on it. Bible scholars largely agree on the fact that Christmas was not the time when Jesus was born, and its secular origins leading to how it is celebrated today are also very well-documented.

I submit to you that the celebration of Christmas be viewed in light of our freedom in Christ.

1 Corinthians 10:29,30…why is my freedom judged by another person’s conscience? 30 If I partake with thanksgiving, why am I criticized because of something for which I give thanks?

The Apostle Paul was addressing the question of whether Christians should eat meat sacrificed to idols, and his answer was, Yes, they can…but!

1 Corinthians 10:25-29Eat everything that is sold in the meat market, without raising questions for the sake of conscience, 26 since the earth is the Lord’s, and all that is in it. 27 If any of the unbelievers invites you over and you want to go, eat everything that is set before you, without raising questions for the sake of conscience. 28 But if someone says to you, “This is food from a sacrifice,” do not eat it, out of consideration for the one who told you, and for the sake of conscience. 29 I do not mean your own conscience, but the other person’s.

The reason why Christians were allowed to eat meat sacrificed to idols is because Christians, by thanksgiving, recognize that regardless of what others may say or practice (e.g. offering a meat to their idols), there is only one God, and everything belong to Him, including that meat sacrificed to idols.

1 Corinthians 8:4-6About eating food sacrificed to idols, then, we know that “an idol is nothing in the world,” and that “there is no God but one.” 5 For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth—as there are many “gods” and many “lords”— 6 yet for us there is one God, the Father. All things are from him, and we exist for him. And there is one Lord, Jesus Christ. All things are through him, and we exist through him.

But the reason there was a caveat to this permission was the effect of our eating on the conscience of the unbelievers who were eating precisely with the objective of honoring their idols. Paul laid this argument as follows

1 Corinthians 8:9-11 …be careful that this right of yours in no way becomes a stumbling block to the weak. 10 For if someone sees you, the one who has knowledge, dining in an idol’s temple, won’t his weak conscience be encouraged to eat food offered to idols? 11 So the weak person, the brother or sister for whom Christ died, is ruined by your knowledge. 12 Now when you sin like this against brothers and sisters and wound their weak conscience, you are sinning against Christ.

There are several key elements which demand our attention:

Element 1: Paul Is Referring To Unbelievers as “Brothers” and “Sisters”

***** Update: Upon further study – and as opposed to what we said under Element 1 and Element 2 below – it may be that the “brothers” and “sisters” that Paul was speaking of were indeed members of the church, perhaps referring to those who were not yet sufficiently mature. While this does not change the main position of the article, it is nevertheless worth noting. ******

While these terms are often used to refer to members of the church, the context of this passage indicates (from the best of our understanding) that Paul is using them here to refer to unbelievers. And he refers to members of the Church as “the ones who have knowledge”. Which knowledge? The knowledge “all true Christians” have that there is only one God and one Lord, which he restated a few verses earlier (1 Corinthians 8:4-6).

Paul therefore, is not talking, as some may suppose, about different beliefs systems within Christianity, regarding eating and drinking, for every Christians should know that everything is the Lord’s.

Element 2: Christ Died For The Unbelievers Too!

Instead, Paul seeks to remind us that Christ died for all, including unbelievers. Indeed, it is God’s desire that all will accept His gift of salvation through Jesus. Therefore, Christians should be careful with their actions because they might contribute to the loss of some of those unbelievers. This is sinning against Christ (1 Corinthians 8:12)

Element 3: The Contrast Between 1 Corinthians 8 And 1 Corinthians 10

In 1 Corinthians 8 Paul stated…

1 Corinthians 8:10For if someone sees you, the one who has knowledge, dining in an idol’s temple, won’t his weak conscience be encouraged to eat food offered to idols?

When a Christian goes into an idol’s temple, he is aware that all the food he will find has been sacrificed to idols. And the unbeliever seeing him may be further encouraged to eat food offered to idols. But while the Christian is enjoying his freedom in Christ, the unbeliever will dig himself or herself deeper in his or her idolatry. Hence, the unbeliever may perish, and therefore the Christian, acting unwisely, is sinning.

In 1 Corinthians 10 Paul stated…

1 Corinthians 10:25-27Eat everything that is sold in the meat market, without raising questions for the sake of conscience, 26 since the earth is the Lord’s, and all that is in it. 27 If any of the unbelievers invites you over and you want to go, eat everything that is set before you, without raising questions for the sake of conscience.

Here the Christian does not have prior knowledge of the meat. He is invited by someone and is free to eat without consequences. Matter of fact, he is even advised not to ask to meat provenance (why should he complicate matters!).

But, if he is informed by his host that the meat was sacrificed to idols, then the case becomes similar to 1 Corinthians 8 and he should therefore refrain from eating it, for the same reason – not to embolden the unbeliever further.

1 Corinthians 10:28, 29 – But if someone says to you, “This is food from a sacrifice,” do not eat it, out of consideration for the one who told you, and for the sake of conscience. 29 I do not mean your own conscience, but the other person’s.

The Celebration of Christmas May Not Be A Different Problem

There may lie the difficulty of the Christmas celebration. We are free in Christ and therefore we recognize that everything is the Lord’s including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! They are the Lord’s. And if by giving Thanks we celebrate these times, I believe our Thanksgivings are accepted.

We are also free to celebrate Christmas with whomever invites us. But are we allowed to celebrate it in a way that would encourage some further in their idolatry? The answer is No, we are not. The idol’s temple gave a different meaning to the meat that was sacrificed in it, and so is the declaration of the host that the meat he just served was sacrificed to idols. Outside of the idol’s temple, and in the absence of the host’s confession, the Christians was permitted to eat meat sacrificed to idols.

I submit to you that similarly, in celebrating Christmas, Christians should not engage in activities which challenge the sovereignty of God and of Jesus. For instance – and I pray I am speaking with the Lord’s permission – decorating your house and exchanging gifts are permitted, while teaching your children the mythical person of Santa Claus and his reindeers, who rewards children for their good deeds is not, since only God is worthy of our praise and worship, and it is God who give good gifts.

James 1:17 – Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.

Some unbelievers think very little of Santa Claus, although they would not mind taking a picture with him or even decorate their house with him. This may be similar to the past when some unbelievers did not think much of idols, and easily ate the food sacrificed to them.

But others are careful to perpetuate, year after year, and generation after generation, the person of Santa Claus, their children truly believing in his existence and his purpose. This may be similar to the past when other unbelievers thought highly of idols, and would eat the food, not just because it was food, but “because” it was sacrificed to idols. We are not permitted to engage in activities which would only further encourage these beliefs.

These statements, are in agreement to how Paul concluded his teaching on the matter, that whatsoever you do, you ought to ask yourself this main question: Is it to the Glory of God?

1 Corinthians 10:31So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.

In Jesus Name. AMEN.