Prayer

Posted by admin on 28 June 2020 in John, Matthew, Psalms |

If you find hard to pray, you may follow the Lord’s prayer in Matthew 6:9-13.

‘This, then, is how you should pray:
‘ “Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.”

The book of Psalms is a good reference for prayer because it shows examples of prayers.

The prayer could be done using your audible voice (as opposed to silence) especially if you find it helps you pray. Rather be concise than keep on babbling (see Matthew 6:7-8).

The prayer may include repentance, thanks, and praises.

You could tell God about various issues, and (recent) incidents you concern about.

You could pray for others (intercession).

# Many verses including John 16:23 teach us to pray “in the name of Jesus”.

References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition, Mt 6:9–13). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

Psalm written by the warrior of faith, David

Posted by admin on 22 June 2020 in Psalms |

I started reading the book of Psalms recently after having finished reading the book of Job. Coincidently, I came across with Bible.is app and downloaded it to my smartphone recently, too. I found out this app was perfect for reading/meditating the book of Psalms. There is different background music for each chapter and it is read at a perfect speed to understand and follow along with the reading. The book of Psalms shows how intimate David was to God, how confidently David approached God's throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16). Listening to Psalm supernaturally opened up the ability to pray greatly. I wish everyone may listen to his Psalms and become a warrior of prayer/faith like David!

I desire mercy, not sacrifice

Posted by admin on 31 May 2020 in Deuteronomy, Exodus, Genesis, Hosea, Leviticus, Luke, Mark, Matthew, Numbers |

Part I shows Sabbath related verses in the books of the Law (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy) and Part II shows what Jesus taught about the Sabbath day (= the Sabbath).

I. Sabbath related verses written in the books of the Law in the Old Testament

God had completed His creation by the seventh day, so on the seventh day he rested from all his work (1). He blessed the seventh day and made it holy.

Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.

By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done. (Genesis 2:1-2)

Sabbath rest is the 4th Commandment among the Ten Commandments.

‘Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labour and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:8-11)

12 ‘Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has commanded you. 13 Six days you shall labour and do all your work, 14 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, so that your male and female servants may rest, as you do. 15 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day. (Deuteronomy 5:12-15)

Based on Exodus 23:10-12, Sabbath rest (the 7th year and the 7th day) was particularly considered for the poor and the slaves as well as animals.

10 ‘For six years you are to sow your fields and harvest the crops, 11 but during the seventh year let the land lie unploughed and unused. Then the poor among your people may get food from it, and the wild animals may eat what is left. Do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove.

12 ‘Six days do your work, but on the seventh day do not work, so that your ox and your donkey may rest, and so that the slave born in your household and the foreigner living among you may be refreshed. (Exodus 23:10–12)

Sabbath rest/celebration is a sign of ‘God’s people’ for the generation to come as a lasting covenant (for ever). The penalty to desecrate it is ‘death’.

12 Then the Lord said to Moses, 13 ‘Say to the Israelites, “You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so that you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.

14 ‘ “Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it is to be put to death; those who do any work on that day must be cut off from their people. 15 For six days work is to be done, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, holy to the Lord. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day is to be put to death. 16 The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. 17 It will be a sign between me and the Israelites for ever, for in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed.” ’

18 When the Lord finished speaking to Moses on Mount Sinai, he gave him the two tablets of the covenant law, the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God. (Exodus 31:12–18)

It was repeatedly commanded.

21 ‘Six days you shall labour, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during the ploughing season and harvest you must rest. (Exodus 34:21)

And the penalty (death) for breaking it is reconfirmed.

for six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day shall be your holy day, a day of sabbath rest to the Lord. Whoever does any work on it is to be put to death. Do not light a fire in any of your dwellings on the Sabbath day.’ (Exodus 35:2–3)

According to Leviticus 23:1-3, sacred assembly on the Sabbath day is one of God’s appointed and anointed festivals.

The Lord said to Moses, ‘Speak to the Israelites and say to them: “These are my appointed festivals, the appointed festivals of the Lord, which you are to proclaim as sacred assemblies.

‘ “There are six days when you may work, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, a day of sacred assembly. You are not to do any work; wherever you live, it is a sabbath to the Lord. (Leviticus 23:1-3)

A man found working on the Sabbath day was stoned to death.

32 While the Israelites were in the wilderness, a man was found gathering wood on the Sabbath day. 33 Those who found him gathering wood brought him to Moses and Aaron and the whole assembly, 34 and they kept him in custody, because it was not clear what should be done to him. 35 Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘The man must die. The whole assembly must stone him outside the camp.’ 36 So the assembly took him outside the camp and stoned him to death, as the Lord commanded Moses. (Numbers 15:32–36)

Additional offering required on the Sabbath day:

‘ “On the Sabbath day, make an offering of two lambs a year old without defect, together with its drink offering and a grain offering of one-fifth of an ephah of the finest flour mixed with olive oil. 10 This is the burnt offering for every Sabbath, in addition to the regular burnt offering and its drink offering. (Numbers 28:9–10)

Here, one-fifth of an ephah is about 3.2kg.

II. What Jesus taught about the Sabbath day

① I desire mercy, not sacrifice (Matthew 12:1-14)

See Matthew 12:1-14.

At that time Jesus went through the cornfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some ears of corn and eat them. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, ‘Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath.’

He answered, ‘Haven’t you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. Or haven’t you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath and yet are innocent? I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. If you had known what these words mean, “I desire mercy, not sacrifice,” you would not have condemned the innocent. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.’

Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shrivelled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, ‘Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?’

11 He said to them, ‘If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.’

13 Then he said to the man, ‘Stretch out your hand.’ So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus. (Matthew 12:1–14)

Here Jesus pointed out that David and his companions ate the consecrated bread because they were in great hunger during the extreme difficulty after they became like vagabonds for a while. Also when the Law commands ‘Sabbath Offering’, the Law itself lets the priests ‘work’ in the temple on the Sabbath day (5). Jesus declared “Something greater than the temple is here.” (6). In Jesus who is greater than the temple, His believers (priests (1 Peter 2:9)) would be innocent for desecrating the Sabbath.

Jesus quoted “I desire mercy, not sacrifice” (Hosea 6:6) to teach the point (7). And Jesus declared “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” (8).

When they asked, ‘Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?’ (10), Jesus said to them,

‘If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.’ (11-12)

Jesus also said in Mark 2:27.

27 Then he said to them, ‘The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.

② Working to Release someone from Satanic binding on the Sabbath (Luke 13:10-17)

See Luke 13:10-17.

10 On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, 11 and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. 12 When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, ‘Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.’ 13 Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.

14 Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, ‘There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.’

15 The Lord answered him, ‘You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? 16 Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?’

17 When he said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing.

Here, Jesus pointed out their common example of untying an ox or donkey from the stall and leading it out to give it water on the Sabbath to justify releasing a woman on the Sabbath, who has kept bound to cripple for 18 long years. Therefore, we can work very hard to release someone from Satanic binding on the Sabbath.

References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

The Great King Hezekiah

Posted by admin on 24 May 2020 in 2 Chronicles, 2 Kings |

2 Chronicles 29 – 32, 2 Kings 18 – 20

Regarding to king Hezekiah, 2 Kings 18:5 says

Hezekiah trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him. He held fast to the Lord and did not stop following him; he kept the commands the Lord had given Moses.

Similar comments were given to king Josiah in 2 Kings 23:25.

25 Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the Lord as he did—with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses.

Today let us study about King Hezekiah.

I. Faithfulness of King Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 29-31)

He lead people to purify the temple of God (2 Chronicles 29), celebrate the festival of Passover in large scale (2 Chronicles 30), destroy idols (objects of foreign gods) (2 Chronicles 31:1), and organize people and materials for on-going worship to God (2 Chronicles 31:2-21).

II. God’s Supernatural Protection (2 Chronicles 32:1-23)

After all the Hezekiah had so faithfully done, Sennacherib king of Assyria threatened Jerusalem and blasphemed God based on the fact that any god of each nation invaded by Assyria could not save them from Assyria.

After King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah cried out in prayer to heaven about this, God sent an angel to put to death 185,000 in the Assyrian camp overnight (2 Chronicles 32:21, 2 Kings 19:35). We can see that God protects those faithful to Him.

III. Healing & Miraculous Sign (2 Chronicles 32:24, 2 Kings 20:1-11)

When Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death, the prophet Isaiah came and told him that he would die. After Hezekiah prayed to God in 2 Kings 20:3.

‘Remember, Lord, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes.’ And Hezekiah wept bitterly.

Before Isaiah had left the middle court, the word of God came to him in 2 Kings 20:5.

‘Go back and tell Hezekiah, the ruler of my people, “This is what the Lord, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will heal you. On the third day from now you will go up to the temple of the Lord. I will add fifteen years to your life. And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend this city for my sake and for the sake of my servant David.” ’

God added 15 years to his life.

Hezekiah asked Isaiah the sign to confirm the above promise, and God made the sun move backward as the sign (2 Kings 20:8-11).

IV. Showing all to a future invader (2 Chronicles 32:27, 31, 2 Kings 20:12-21)

Hezekiah had very great wealth and honour (2 Chronicles 32:27).

Envoys together with letters and a gift were sent by the rulers of Babylon because they had heard of Hezekiah’s illness and wanted to ask him about the miraculous sign (the sun moving backward) (2 Kings 20:12, 2 Chronicles 32:31). When Hezekiah experienced the miracle from God, a remote country, Babylon heard the news! When Peter obeyed the word of Jesus and miraculously caught abundant fish, he and his companions were astonished (Luke 5:9). When one person obeys and experiences God, others are also influenced.

Hezekiah received the envoys and showed them all that was in his storehouses (2 Kings 20:13).

Showing all to envoys from a foreign country looks unsound. Showing off is unsound in general. He should have focused on revealing God rather than his wealth or achievement.

Isaiah, the prophet asked King Hezekiah, ‘What did they see in your palace?’ (2 Kings 20:15)

Isaiah foretold that everything would be carried off to Babylon and nothing will be left (2 Kings 20:17) and some of his descendants will be taken away to become eunuchs in the palace of king of Babylon (2 Kings 20:18).

Only God can show true reality of things. So, we should always ask God first even when everything looks OK.

Hezekiah was confident on God’s grace that such things would not happen during his lifetime (2 Kings 20:19). Only concerning about the security of one’s own lifetime and disregarding the future generations is out of self-centeredness.

We can have such confidence on God’s grace if we have been got right with God. However, we should always keep humility before God no matter what.

References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition, 2 Ki 18:5–6). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

God has said to Solomon after he had completed the Temple of God

Posted by admin on 18 May 2020 in Uncategorized |

2 Chronicles 7:14

14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.



References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

 

God or idol?

Posted by admin on 3 May 2020 in Colossians, Genesis |

In this message, the focus is not anyone else but Adam or the reader, who is responsible to put God first even though Adam or we may tend to blame others.

It is surprising that how much the first 3 chapters in the 1st book (Genesis) in the Holy Bible tell us.

I. God pointed out the problem (Genesis 3:17-19)

Today let us just look at what God said ‘Adam’s problem’ was in Genesis 3:17-19.

17 To Adam he said, ‘Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, “You must not eat from it,”

‘Cursed is the ground because of you;

through painful toil you will eat food from it

all the days of your life.

18 It will produce thorns and thistles for you,

and you will eat the plants of the field.

19 By the sweat of your brow

you will eat your food

until you return to the ground,

since from it you were taken;

for dust you are

and to dust you will return.’

Verse 17 tells us the problem we can see in most men even these days.

Adam disobeyed God to obey the woman!

Why is this the big and fundamental problem? Because it is disobedience to the 1st and 2nd commandments of God.

Exodus 20:3-4

‘You shall have no other gods before me.

‘You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

Adam made the woman higher than God. Adam made the woman an idol. Otherwise how Adam could disobey God to obey the woman? But surprisingly again, Adam showed that he did not recognized this fundamental problem of his own!

II. Adam showed he didn’t understand his problem (Genesis 3:12)

See Genesis 3:12. When God chased after his responsibility, he answered,

12 The man said, ‘The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.’

He blamed the woman. And he blamed God who put her with him. He didn’t blame his problem of disobedience and idolatry, but blamed others! It seemed that he didn’t know he was a sinner!

III. Neither do Adam's descendants of this generation understand their problem

This problem is what can be seen even until this generation. People are idolaters and have hard time to understand why they are sinners. Yes, you are sinners of idolatry. Even if you didn’t make or worship an image of idols, you are idolaters if you are greedy. Greed is idolatry based on Colossians 3:5–6.

5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.

People forgot God and their heart are filled with their greed, instead of God. Greed is their God. Therefore they are idolaters, disobeying the first two commandments of God. God pointed this out in Genesis 3:17.

But Adam expressed his ignorance in Genesis 3:12. So do people in this generation.

So amazing that it has already been written in the very beginning in the Holy Bible!!

IV. Basic principle to follow

Again, the books of 1 & 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Kings, and 1 & 2 Chronicles in the Old Testament of the Holy Bible show the history of

  • God’s supernatural help and prosperity when they got right with God
  • troubles and failures when they worshiped idols (and inevitably did evils thereafter)

From them, we can learn basic principle to follow. Again, let us ask ourselves: God or idol?

REFERENCES

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

God’s power of resurrection

Posted by admin on 12 April 2020 in Ezekiel |

Ezekiel 37:1-14

Welcome! Happy Easter!

Since Adam’s fall, death came to humanity. Over the thousands of years, we have been accepting death as common fate. Recent coronavirus worsened our situation under the power of death. We need faith in God and His Son Jesus more than ever.

Today, let us study Ezekiel 37:1-14, and find out God’s power of resurrection.

I. Son of man, can these bones live? (1 – 3)

Ezekiel was standing in front of a great many bones on the floor of the valley. Bones were very dry (2).

God asked Prophet Ezekiel in v3.

‘Son of man, can these bones live?’

Indeed, we are looking at what are totally impossible to live, decades-old dry bones… But this question helps us expect God’s awesome miracle!

Jesus also asked a man invalid for 38 years in John 5:6,

“Do you want to get well?”

The man might have lost any hope after such a long period time. But, through this question, Jesus gave him hope that he could get well. And then, Jesus healed him (John 5:8-9).

We don’t hope someone to live again once has died… But, when God asks, “Can these bones live?”, he is giving us such hope in the midst of worst-case scenario.

II. They came to life and stood up on their feet (4 – 10)

See verse 4-6.

God asked Ezekiel to prophesy to these bones and say to them,

“Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.” (4-6)

And as Ezekiel was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone (7). Behold! Tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them (8).

God said to Ezekiel,

‘Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it,

“This is what the Sovereign Lord says: come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.” ’ (9)

So, Ezekiel prophesied as God commanded him, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army (10).

Hallelujah! God raised whole lot of dead people of bare dry bones back to life! God demonstrated that He is almighty God who raises the dead!

Jesus said, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.’ (John 11:25), and He raised dead Lazarus (John 11:43-44).

According to Apostle Paul, the resurrection of Jesus entails resurrection of the dead (1 Corinthians 15:12-20). In 1 Corinthians 15:36b, Paul teaches the resurrection is shown in the nature.

What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.

The resurrection we will experience in future is even more amazing than what we have just read in Ezekiel. Our new body will be imperishable and immortal, suitable for eternal life in Kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 15:50-56).

III. God’s power of resurrection (11 – 14)

Let’s continue to read Ezekiel. See verse 11.

Then God said to Ezekiel,

‘Son of man, these bones are the people of Israel.

They say,

“Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.”

At this particular time, God showed Ezekiel this awesome miracle regarding to the people of Israel. They have been absolutely hopeless and devastated.

In verse 12-14, God said “my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them … when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live …”.

At the moment Jesus gave up his spirit on the cross, the dead were raised. See Matthew 27:51-53.

51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

In the book of Ezekiel and Matthew, we saw the glimpse of God’s power of resurrection. The resurrection in future will be global and glorious for the believers (1 Corinthians 15:52).

In worst and hopeless situations, we may say as the bones say,

“Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.” (11)

But nothing is impossible to God. God raised them to life. If God can raise decades-old dry bones back to life, we can certainly believe that He can help us in any hopeless situation we may have. No problem is too serious or too late for Him.

Situation can be changed up and down. You may be in the midst of a situation getting worse. But remember the word of God we studied today. We can trust God – His faithfulness and His power. Pray to God. Ask God’s will and direction. Wait for God. We can just do the right things regardless of situations. God will do the rest. What are the right things that we can do?

Let us read what Paul concluded after he had finished explaining about the resurrection of Jesus and the resurrection of the dead:

58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labour in the Lord is not in vain. (1 Corinthians 15:58)

Amen.

While some people may be already equipped with biblical knowledge and discipleship training, some may be new, who may need time for learning & training (but the learning should never end). Regardless, ‘your labour in the Lord is not in vain’. Amen.

As a student, your study is your responsibility (your cross for you to take up). Ask God ‘wisdom’ to manage your time wisely while studying diligently and serving the LORD faithfully.

The Lord be with you.

References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

Christ’s Sacrifice for our Sin & Resurrection foretold

Posted by admin on 29 March 2020 in Isaiah |

Isaiah 53:1-12

Sacrifice of Christ for our sin was foretold in verses 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, and 12 in Isaiah 53, underlined as below. His resurrection was foretold in v10 and v11 marked in bold.

1 Who has believed our message

and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?

He grew up before him like a tender shoot,

and like a root out of dry ground.

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,

nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

He was despised and rejected by mankind,

a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.

Like one from whom people hide their faces

he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain

and bore our suffering,

yet we considered him punished by God,

stricken by him, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions,

he was crushed for our iniquities;

the punishment that brought us peace was on him,

and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,

each of us has turned to our own way;

and the Lord has laid on him

the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted,

yet he did not open his mouth;

he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,

and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,

so he did not open his mouth.

By oppression and judgment he was taken away.

Yet who of his generation protested?

For he was cut off from the land of the living;

for the transgression of my people he was punished.

He was assigned a grave with the wicked,

and with the rich in his death,

though he had done no violence,

nor was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,

and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin,

he will see his offspring and prolong his days,

and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.

11 After he has suffered,

he will see the light of life and be satisfied;

by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,

and he will bear their iniquities.

12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,

and he will divide the spoils with the strong,

because he poured out his life unto death,

and was numbered with the transgressors.

For he bore the sin of many,

and made intercession for the transgressors.

References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

Solomon

Posted by admin on 22 March 2020 in 1 Kings |

Solomon’s life gives us the lesson that even wisest men can be gone astray by women. How?

1 Kings 11:2 describes this as below:

They were from nations about which the Lord had told the Israelites, ‘You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.’ Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love.

Even when women were spiritually wrong, Solomon continued to hold fast to them in love…

Adam also took the forbidden fruit from the woman even when she had already been captivated by the snake (Genesis 3:6).

a spring of water welling up to eternal life

Posted by admin on 15 March 2020 in John |

See John 4:13-14.

    13Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."

Let us think about what ‘thirsty again’ means.

Our physical body is mortal. Our body has physiological needs. So, we drink physical water and eat physical food.  We have to repeat this. We value physical things and do not know they can’t satisfy our soul. This misunderstanding can put us in pursuit or competition for the limited resources. This pursuit or competition can make us tired of the repetition. ‘thirsty again’ expresses this. But if we drink the water Jesus gives will never thirst, giving eternal satisfaction and eternal life. It will become a spring of water welling up forever.

This water satisfies our soul and does not require repetition

People who depend only on physical water will be continuously thirsty. Either ignorant or resentful of their God-implanted need for spiritual water, they will always look in the wrong direction for satisfaction. Jeremiah had proclaimed this truth centuries earlier: “My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water” (Jeremiah 2:13). [2]

God Himself is the spring of living water (Jeremiah 2:13). The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross qualified us (His believers) to retain inside us this spring of water welling up to eternal life.

References

[1] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Anglicised Edition, 2011). (2011). (Revised and updated edition, Jn 4:13-14). London: Hodder & Stoughton.

[2] Gangel, K. O. (2000). John (Vol. 4, p. 76). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

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