Monday, 2 April 2012
This follows in the wake of recent discussions about the church and Christ. One was of course Jeff Bethke’s now viral YouTube post, “Why I hate religion, and love Jesus,” which I posted earlier.
Is this really what God’s word teaches about the church, the bride of Christ? Or is this a knee-jerk anti-institutional reaction to the reality of an imperfect church? Granted, there will always be excesses and abuses, fallen saints, scandals, controversies, but Christ Himself declares in Matt 16.18, upon Peter’s confession of Jesus as Messiah, “Upon this rock I will build My church ; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”
This has been the direction of the emergent church movement some time back, and perhaps now re-emerging in a variant form. Like the non-Christian who gripes that he will never believe in Christ because Christians are hypocrites, the argument and reasoning holds some water, but it is not one and the same. It is, of course, at the same time, a sobering reminder that the church indeed reflects and represents Christ, and that the world
Saturday, 24 July 2010
A beautifully written reflection by one of my core youth leaders on the grace of God.
If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
It’s sad how today, so many people today call themselves Christians when they’re actions obviously show otherwise. GRACE GRACE GRACE. That’s what they tell themselves, as if Jesus’ blood on the cross and the grace he showed is an excuse for them to live anyway they want. We have severely cheapened God’s grace. And what does Hebrews tell us about that? If the people were so severely punished for rejecting Moses’ law, how much worse do you think they will be punished for cheapening the blood of Jesus.
1 John 2:4
We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
And the Bible has tons of other verses like this one. Isn’t it obvious? We are Christians not because we call ourselves Christians. If we truly are Children of God, our lives will reflect the glory of God! Of course we won’t be sinless, but we will show desire for His Holiness. Notice the last line “whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did”. The Bible is full of other such verses that remind us that what we do reflect what we really believe? Do you REALLY believe Jesus died for you? Do you REALLY believe God expects holiness from you? If you REALLY believe it, you would live your life as if you believed it.
This is not to say we work our way to heaven. No, I’ve repeated time and time again, Jesus’ precious blood is what redeemed us. And what amazing grace this is. But the knowledge of this sacrifice should change the way we live our lives completely! Stop playing with Sin and treating it like a small matter. The blood of Jesus is NOT TO BE CHEAPENED.
Thursday, 25 March 2010
Michael Hyatt wrote an interesting observation about Jesus’ leadership strategy as compared to contemporary and secular leadership models.
- Jesus taught the masses.
- Jesus mobilized the seventy.
- Jesus trained the twelve.
- Jesus confided in the three.
You can read his full entry here.
Sunday, 7 March 2010
The season of Lent, known in the traditional Christian calendar as the 40 days before Easter Sunday, not including Sundays, lasts from Ash Wednesday to the end of Passion or Holy Week, which this year falls between 17 February to 4 April 2010. During Lent, Christians take time to contemplate our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, particularly His death and resurrection.
let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Saturday, 19 December 2009
Thabiti writes an interesting entry reflecting on Heb 13:20-21.
- I need to remember the resurrection of our Lord (Eph 2:14; 2 Cor 1:8-9).
- I need to remember that Jesus is the great shepherd of the sheep at ____ (your church) (Eze 34:14-16).
- I need to remember that God equips me with everything I need to do His will (2 Pet 1:3-4a; 2 Tim 3:16-17).
- I need to remember that I not only want to please God but He is the one working in me so that I will please Him through Christ (Eph 2:10; Gal 2:20).
- I need to remember God gets all the glory (Ps 115:1).