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Church, What's Gotta Go

This is a follow up on  the last article.  That article talked about how we have to change, and now, since I don't know about all of you personally, I can't pinpoint the stuff that each of you needs to change. But, since this is a Christian Edification blog- (at least it says so in the description), I will talk about what we need to change in the church. ( We might need more than one article for this one though .) ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship is a farce, for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God.’ ~ Matthew 15:8‭-‬9 NLT  History repeats itself right? Isaiah said it, Jesus repeated it in the NT, and now here I am. Not saying that I am like these two, far from it! I'm just saying that the community of "believers" now, in Jesus time, and in Isaiah's time do not have that much of a difference.  God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.
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Stuff's Gotta Go

In the  last article , we looked at the possibility of us changing merely as a result of a change in the calendar, or even the dawn of a new day. And we realize that it's almost (if not definitely) impossible that a change in time can change who we are, or what we do, be it in our personal or spiritual lives- advancing in careers, education and/or witnessing and expanding the Kingdom. But since the New Year doesn't in any way change who we are, what will?  But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed! ~ 1 Corinthians 15:51 NLT  The context of this verse is the end of time, but I'm drawing it to our time. That when God, is revealed to us by His Spirit, we won't remain the same, but we will be changed.  Enthusiasm without knowledge is no good; haste makes mistakes. ~ Proverbs 19:2 NLT We (most, if not all of us) are pumped to go into the New Year and grab it by the scruff and take it down. We have all these ideas, dream

New Year, New Me?

Time is such a social construct. The calendar in itself is just a way to number our days, while in fact, our days are not made different by the rising of the sun. It's not a new sun that rose today. It's not a new sun that will rise on Monday to make next week more productive than this week. It's all in us. Time passes, definitely and indefinitely. But the passing of time doesn't necessarily change us as much as we might want to think. The turning of a new year is just that. Some cultures haven't yet celebrated their New Year yet and they're still breathing, alive and kicking.  Delight yourself in the Lord , And He will give you the desires and petitions of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord ; Trust in Him also and He will do it. ~ Psalms 37:4‭-‬5 AMP So, what then? Is it hopeless?  Are we helpless in this world? Not at all. This New Year is a chance for us to fulfill our mission, or part of it. It is a way to help us set goals, timeframes to achieve these

The Christmas Story

The last two articles we looked at  Mary's experience and  Joseph's view of the whole "Christmas thing". And by Christmas, I'm referring to the birth of Christ, not whatever we might have made it to be. In this article, I want us to merge the two, bring the Baby Jesus into the fray, and see what this means for us. "Do not be afraid..." Mary was frightened the first time she saw the angel, and rightly so- because how do you explain away seeing a glowing being let's say perhaps in your living room. It was out of the ordinary. But God revealed Himself to Mary to tell her what He had in store for her. We know that Mary was still a virgin at the time and has consecrated herself to the Lord. ‘Call to Me and I will answer you, and tell you [and even show you] great and mighty things, [things which have been confined and hidden], which you do not know and understand and cannot distinguish.’ ~ Jeremiah 33:3 AMP Joseph's case was a little different. He

Joseph

Last week, we looked at Mary's view. If  indeed Mary did know.  Today, we flip the switch and look at this from Joseph's viewpoint. You know, we usually talk about this a lot, but do we really go to the full lengths and actually see what exactly was going in Joseph's mind? Let's paint the picture first. As humans, not as the Lord's father, Mary and Joseph must have had issues leading up to the birth of Christ. Let's get into Joseph's shoes. So you're betrothed (what now?) engaged to a girl. You've not even once laid your hands on her, and then, out of nowhere, you find out she's pregnant. Aha? Then when you decide to talk toher about it, she cites the spirit of God. I think it was so kind of Joseph to want to not want their break up to be public. Cause I'm sure he, like most of us if put in that situation, felt played, cheated, taken for a ride. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was mind

Mary Did You Know?

Many times we sing this, we hear it blasting in the soundwaves as we near Christmas, but today, we are not singing, we are going to answer the question. Ready? Good. Background first.  •  •  • Before this time, before the angel Gabriel announced the birth of Jesus, the heavens had been silent for almost 400 years. For around four hundred years, the Israelites had waited for a prophet to be sent to them. For around four hundred years the Israelites had just lived. And in this time, the Romans came and conquered the Israelites. The Israelites had been waiting for a saviour-  someone to come, waging a sword, riding on a horse, to overthrow the Roman empire. We see that Jesus was so awaited, but the people who waited knew very little of what exactly they were waiting for. So, what were they supposed to be waiting for?  ...And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” ~ Luke 1:33 NLT  So, for us, we know exactly what the angel meant. That Jesus would reign over Israel

For the Culture

Hello. I really hope that this finds you well. I wanted to title this article Modern Day Pharisees, but I decided to go against it and go for something more subtle.  In last week's article, we looked at what not to do as far as witnessing is concerned. Today, I want us to build up on that and gather more perspective on this.  Their worship is a farce, for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God. ~ Matthew 15:9 NLT In theatre, a farce is some sort of comedy or satirical absurdity (google 😂). Plainly, the Bible describes some of our worship as a joke, literally and we see why- we have given precedence to people's ideas, man's systems and rules over the Word of God, even though we know that the Word of God takes precedence over everything. So don’t let anyone condemn you for what you eat or drink, or for not celebrating certain holy days or new moon ceremonies or Sabbaths. For these rules are only shadows of the reality yet to come. And Christ himself is that reality.

The Fries and Ketchup Analogy

Hello. I sincerely hope that you're doing well. After the last article, the stand out question I received was, " How does one do this- how does one put love as paramount when intending to share the gospel?" a nd I will answer this question with an analogy. • • • Assume you were having lunch at a restaurant that you frequent- perhaps you take your lunch here everyday. But one day, as you're taking your lunch, someone comes over to your table and tells you,-nay, shouts in your face, that you are not supposed to pour ketchup all over your fries, that you should pour a bit on the side of your plate then you dip your fries in there before every bite. In all honesty, you wouldn't be willing to listen to this guy, for two reasons; one, how he approached you, and two, you have eaten fries with ketchup all over it and there haven't been any issues- you still enjoyed it. And even if you indeed listen, you would only listen so as to point out discrepancies in the ar

The Great Command

I have been talking a lot about Witnessing, because it has been predominantly stamped on my heart. So, allow me to share all this with you without fail. Therefore, go and make disciples of ALL the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” ~ Matthew 28:19‭-‬20 NLT This was the last instruction that Christ gave His disciples. And taking Christ to be fully man, I would like to liken Him to me and you- that He said this as the last thing so that it would be the one thing that His disciples, should they forget everything else, they wouldn't forget this. Now, should we take that to be the case, it would be in order for us to infer that everything else He said and did prior to this- the teachings, the parables, the miracles- were indeed a run-up, a build up to this. Your LOVE for one another will prove to th

Battle

Hello. We are still talking about Witnessing, but today, I'd like us to approach this from a different angle, another perspective. Something sort of a warfare kind of viewpoint. 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. ~ Ephesians 6:12 NLT So, though we are not literally upping arms and matching into battle like we see in those World War reenactments, we are going into battle- and this battle has higher stakes- much much higher stakes. But with these high stakes,we lose sight of our aim, our target, our goal. We have become like footballers desperately trying to score, but we're striving to score in our own net. For those to whom the football analogy did not make sense, look at it this way; we are in a battle, yes, but the people we're shooting so hard at, are supposed to be on our team. Insane, right? The e

Good Food

Ever enjoyed a meal so much that, for the rest of the week, that meal was the only thing on your mind, the only thing you could think of? Or you were just in such a good mood that everyone who saw you just had to ask? That's what Christianity was meant to be. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor... ~ Luke 4:18 NLT  That is basically it. Good News. So Jesus came into the world to bring good news. Good news of the reconciliation of God and man. Bit why doesn't it seem like good news really? Why does it seem like Christianity is something that we should be ashamed of? Why do most Christians tend to hide their faith? Two things. Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:4 NLT  One, those who don't believe cann

Perception III

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. ~ John 10:27‭-‬28 KJVA  This is the assurance that we have, that if we are stayed on God, His promise is; 1. Eternal life, and 2. That we can't be pulled away from Him. Yes, there may be circumstances in life that seem to bring us down and pull us away from the plans of God, but here's the thing: He saw it coming, and was prepared for it- nothing catches God by surprise. And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. ~ Numbers 13:30 KJVA  In Numbers, we see a story about the Israelites, when they had an obstacle in their path. And we see Caleb (and Joshua) who no matter the size of the obstacle before them, believed that (with God) they were well able to overcome it! And this should be our perception in life, that with God on

Perception (II)

I'd like us to pick up from where we left off last time. Be sober [well balanced and self-disciplined], be alert and cautious at all times. That enemy of yours, the devil, prowls around LIKE a roaring lion [fiercely hungry], seeking someone to devour. ~ 1 Peter 5:8 AMP The main thing I'd want us to look at, is the word like. The devil portrays himself like a lion- like something great, like God's equal antagonist. But far from it. Jesus is the Lion (King) and the Lamb (the sacrifice) but this isn't what the devil wants you to see. He wants us to see him as an equal to God, even though we know that God has no equal. “To whom would you liken Me And make Me equal and compare Me, That we may be alike?" ~ Isaiah 46:5 AMP There's certainly no one of a stature that's even close to that of God. Thus we should understand that the contest between God and the devil is inexistant. The devil was defeated long ago! Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not

Perception.

Sometimes we look up to God and we wonder, "Can You hear me? Can You see this?" Wondering why He allowed us to go through some of the situations we go through. Sometimes even questioning His love, and in the extreme, His very existence. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned or scorched, nor will the flame kindle upon you. ~ Isaiah 43:2 AMPC God does not promise that our lives would be smooth sailing all through, but what He does promise is that He will be with us no matter what, and that the situations we face will not be stronger than us to overwhelm us. • •  • Consider gold, it goes through crushing, and when "it" thinks that's it, it goes through the fire- where it's heated to the point of melting, but what comes out from that process is something so priceless! •     •     • ³Be assured and understand that the trial and provi

Faith

I've been thinking a lot, and I discovered that life is clouded by a lot of dichotomy- it's either this or that, pizza or burger, fries or crisps, yoghurt or icecream. (Don't ask yourself why everything that came to mind was related to food, I also don't know. But maybe if you ask yourself, you'd know, so if you do get to know, tell me why.)   Anywho, the dichotomy I want to bring to us today is Faith or fear. And I know what some of us are thinking- "the presence of one doesn't necessarily imply the absence of the other" , and that's the whole point of this article. Have not I COMMANDED thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be NOT AFRAID... ~ Joshua 1:9 KJV  According to God, being strong and being afraid cannot go hand in hand. Of course He is not telling us to be strong and courageous on our own, no! He provides the basis of our strength and courage- that He is with us wherever we go. Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of th

The Flow

In the past almost five months, I've been in almost constant contact with nature. I've learnt a lot. The saying is true- all creation points to the glory of God (paraphrased). Today I want to talk about Rivers. Yes, that's right. Those moving masses of water. For thus says the Lord: Behold, I will extend PEACE  to her like a RIVER , and the glory of the nations like an overflowing stream; then you will be nursed, you will be carried on her hip and trotted [lovingly bounced up and down] on her [God's maternal] knees. ~ Isaiah 66:12 AMPC This is what God says about Jerusalem. That after "she" has gone through turmoil, God will extend His peace to her, like a river. So does He say about you, that after you've been in distress, He will extend His peace to you. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will NOT SUFFER  you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a WAY TO ESCAPE

The Word

For most part of the past two weeks, I've been traveling. When traveling, I usually learn a lot. I went to visit my grandpa and I noticed something that I would like to share with you. He keeps chicken. The feed for the chicken was right there in the middle of the chicken feed was inside the "chicken house". The chicken did all sorts of things on the sack that had their feed. The most intriguing part was that the chicken would make noise whenever they were hungry, and my grandpa would come, open the sack and pour the food for them. • • • The Word of God is the food that our spirits should feed on. But most of the time, we act like we don't have it. We act like it's not available to us, and we keep crying out to God to speak to us. This Book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall

Strength.

Sometimes we find ourselves in situations that we don't have any idea how to get out of. We find ourselves caught up in stuff that we can only ask, "What the- ?"  In situations like these, God already knows what. He knows exactly how to get you out. The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, He will show you a way out so that you can endure . ~ 1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT See, He will pull you out. But sometimes we think that it is all so impossible to you. We try to put God in our shoes, we think that God cannot. We lose hope even before we ask for help. We say on our own that there is nothing that can be done. Jesus soon saw a huge crowd of people coming to look for him. Turning to Philip, he asked, “Where can we buy bread to feed all these people?”...  Then Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up. “There’s a young boy here with five bar

You

In the last couple of articles, we looked at  our likeness to God ,  God being our Father , and  our sonship . In all these we saw how God made us, what God wants to be in our lives, and how God sees us. In this article I want to cap it with how we see ourselves. Why? Because the limit of our experience in God is our perception. If we perceive ourselves as limitless, we are  limitless . But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. ~ John 1:12 NLT So already we know that, by virtue of our belief, we are children of God. What then can prevent us from walking in this reality, from manifesting our likeness to God here on earth, that the Father may be glorified? Easy. The enemy came to steal, kill and destroy. But since we have been born of an incorruptible seed, he can only surpress our expression. The chief of staff renamed them with these Babylonian names: Daniel was called Belteshazzar. Hananiah was called Shadrach. Mishael was called Meshac

Sons of God

In the last article , we looked at God being our Father. Now I want us to look at ourselves as the children, we the sons. Are we all just by virtue of being God's creation, God's children? No. But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God. ~ John 1:12 NLT So here we see that only by accepting the call of God, by receiving Him and believing Christ as our saviour, we become children of God. Born not of the flesh but of the spirit of God. (John 3:5) . This means that as we believe in God, we accept His new life, and we give up the old life- the life that seeks the desires of the flesh. This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! ~ 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT But even as this is true, we saw in the last article , that sometimes we may sin- but that doesn't mean that we stop being children of God. The whole point is, the sin becomes not the natural cause of our lives but

God the Father?

In the last article , we talked about likeness to God. Transformation into His image as we behold Him, His glory. And we all, with unveiled face, continually seeing as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are progressively being transformed into His image from [one degree of] glory to [even more] glory, which comes from the Lord, [who is] the Spirit.~ 2 Corinthians 3:18 AMP Today I want to bring us to see, why do we still get tempted to sin, and more often than naught, succumb to this sin, if we are now in God's image? Does that mean that God is also tempted? Does it imply that God also sins? Certainly not! Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God” [for temptation does not originate from God, but from our own flaws]; for God cannot be tempted by [what is] evil, and He Himself tempts no one. ~ James 1:13 AMP James puts it outright that God is not tempted, he goes a step further and states that God doesn't tempt anyone. This is the message we heard from Jesus a