Words from the Pastor
As we come to the end of September, after our joyous month of celebration (in August), praising and thanking God for our 29th year of faithful service of His Gospel, we come to join Israel welcome the Jewish New Year of 5778. Rosh Hashanah! May the Lord bless Israel with peace and joy in this their new year.
Jews all around the world would be praying for the “sweet
blessings” of God to overshadow everything ahead of them. And in the same vein,
let us anticipate, and expect our good God to continue bringing our way sweet
and pleasant fulfillment of His promises (and our desires) as we approach the
roaring end of 2017, and take glimpses of the coming 30th anniversary (God
willing) of our ongoing mission as His bride and partner in the world where we
As we are so familiar with, we are His feet that we might bring His good news to the lost who have not heard of His rich salvation. We are His hands to touch the hurting, heal the sick and bring help to the needy. We are His heart to touch the oppressed and release from bondage all who are bound in prison. All of which we are empowered and enabled to carry out in and with the power of His Spirit.
We unite with our Jewish friends in welcoming a new year of the Lord raising our faith, feeding a fresh commitment and dedication of faithful service to our Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ.
It seems like the coldness of winter wants to hang around a little bit longer, chilling the atmosphere much to the dislike of the great majority who’d enjoy warmer weather swimming and running along the seashore. It’s the prevailing sentiment in most Christian circles during this season when we’re faced with the issue of same-sex marriage, that is so loudly being broadcast.
As believers in God through our Saviour Lord Jesus Christ, it’s astounding to hear and read news about “certain” Christian circles who would campaign for a “yes” vote. I shudder at the thought of church leaders who deliberately dishonor the permanent absolute Word of God, rationalizing that the morality of God changes over time. Romans 1:26-27 clearly declares, “For this reason God gave them up to viile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.” This brings us to Romans 12:2 which states, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
Being “conformed” in its Greek usage speaks of putting on clothes when it’s cold, and taking off clothes when it’s hot, referring to conforming with the world morality and political correctness through the passage of time. The Apostle Paul, under God’s inspiration, strongly urges us to remain vigilant and resolute with the revealed will of God. When the time comes for making our voice heard and our vote counts, we the accepted and adopted children of God would know what to do.
Yours in Christ,
What is the church really supposed to be? We learned a few weeks ago that it’s not just to gather and be entertained. Or is it for the excitement factor. It’s not even just for evangelism or education. We discover from God’s Word that we come together for edification (1Corinthians 14:12). Edification of believers leads to excitement, evangelism, education, even entertainment. Indeed, when believers are edified, they grow, and naturally, the healthy church also grows!
In today’s installment of our study, we will focus on “how” and with “what” we believers are edified. The sixth verse of the same chapter from the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth specified four elements crucial to growth in church life. They are revelation, knowledge, prophesying, and teaching. They help God’s Word to be received and incarnated in our souls, bringing liberty and freedom to us, so that His love happens in us, and through us the world is enriched.
When church leadership is faithful and diligent in causing growth in people’s lives, believers learn to gather in worship, extolling the Lord Jesus Christ, and the church becomes what church is supposed to be in the first place. It’s important that we understand God did not save us just to be church-goers.
We are still here because He wants us to become what He wants us to become – be witnesses for Him, advancing His Gospel to the ends of the earth. And that needs us to gather as His church, be edified, grow big and strong, and as His Body touch the world in His love and by His power.