Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Can or Should I do it or Not?

A Christian is always surrounded by things from which he has to make a choice. Is that permitted? Can I do it or not? Is it ok if I go there? The list just goes. Last days when I was praying a thought came to my mind which I want to put here.

What all I can do? Paul says in 1 Cor 6:12 that “Everything is permissible for me”—but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible for me”—but I will not be mastered by anything.

Again in 1 Cor 10:23 that “Everything is permissible”—but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible”—but not everything is constructive.

So we see that lot of things are there which may be permissible but not beneficial and constructive. So how can we know what to do and what not. First step is always check in Bible as to what God says about it. Bible has answer to almost everything you can ask. You can also consult elder christians regarding it.

Now I want to give two tips to decide which God taught me. They are:-

  1. Think if Jesus would have been in your place then what he would have done. Will he go to that place? What will his response be? Now to know what Jesus would have done you will have to read gospels and learn the personality of Jesus.
  2. Can I maintain the presence of God in my life by going there or doing it. By going or by my action do I feel a vaccum in my heart regarding God. Do I feel like I am losing the power of God in me.

Avoid all things in your life which can take the anointing of God away from your life. Avoid all things which can come as a block in your life preventing the free flow of God’s power in your life. Devils intention is to take you away from the presence of God because he knows that once he does it then he can make you do anything. Try to meditate the life of Samson. Once he lost the power of God in his life the enemy was able to bind him and even take out his eyes. A man who demonstrated the power of God through his life reached such a point that enemy completely prevailed against him. Reason was simple- He allowed things in his life which was not needed. We can see many other examples like this.

Now when we come to practical aspect what are the things. Let me give you a brief list:-

  1. Watching movies which are against the ideas of Bible.
  2. Surfing websites which are not good.
  3. Reading magazines which does not reflect the culture of Bible.
  4. Going to places were you know sin prevails or where sin is encouraged or Sold.
  5. Friendship which is demanding you to do things which are against the will of God.
  6. Doing Job which makes you unfaithful or where you are forced to accept bribe or do wrong.
  7. Unwanted chatter which promotes nothing good.
  8. Spending time on things which is not at all need

The list can go on and on. But the question is- Will you take a stand to proctect your spiritual life and to make sure the presence of God is with you?

May God Bless You!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Goodness in Brokenness

In my spiritual life of about 10 yrs now I have got the opportunity to meet many people who are spiritual and who are leading a life worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There has been few people with whom I got very close so that I could know them in a better way. I can’t say I became close with all the people but there were few who made an impact in my life at times. The spiritual characters I now have were developed or motivated by their life. Some were men of faith, some were strong in their doctrine and belief, some were men with a heart for missions, some had a pastoral heart, some were born motivators and also few who had nothing special worth mentioning but still had some thing which separated them from the group. The person who most impressed me and who still holds lot of respect was an ordinary person who had this undying spirit of not murmuring or saying anything against God even when he is going through tough times. He was not an outspoken person nor one who was first choice for preaching. He always used to smile and was always interested in things concerning the kingdom of God rather than his problems. I knew that he was going through much pain which I cannot explain here.

I could take out all my frustrations before him and also share my visions with him. Whenever I took a step of faith he was always there to backup and encourage me. When I look back I can say that out of the things I did for God, 90% won’t have happened if God wouldn’t have sent this Man of God into my life to stand with me and encourage me when everyone looked with suspicion whether things will succeed or not. A important lesson I learned out of this was that don’t always think that people seen on the pulpit or who is influential in churches are the best mentors you can get. It can be someone younger to you but it has to be someone in whom the spirit of God dwells.

Now what I want share here is something different. What was one common thing I found in all these people? Do they all woke up at 5:00 am and prayed? NO. So they all fasted in same way? No. Did they all clothed in same way? NO. Did they all read same number of bible chapters everyday? NO. Then what else expect the basic fundamental teaching of Jesus Christ.

I can say it as BROKENNESS. You may not believe but its the truth. Behind every mighty men/women of God there was this thing called as Brokenness. Are they all broken in same area? NO. But they all had some brokenness somewhere in their life. The people who saw them from outside always thought that they were perfect people who had no problems or worries. But the reality was and is that they have brokenness.

When I tried to understand this it was bit hard for me initially. But the more I meditated the Bible and try to reason with God I found that there is indeed a Goodness in Brokenness (All people may not agree with me). But its a fact.I want to put names of some people here from Bible. Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Jephthah, Ruth, Hannah, Samuel, David, Elijah, Elisha, Nehemiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Peter, Paul etc. Now if you will meditate on their life then one thing is evident that God used them mightily but they had brokenness.

Abraham had his anxious movements when asked to leave his country and go to a place which was not told to him. He lived years without a child. Time came when Ishmael came in his life. Then time of testing when he was asked to offer Issac. Jacob had to run for his life. Had to serve Laban for 20 yrs. Joseph was hated by own brothers and sold by them. He was innocent but still had to spend long years in jail. Was in jail on charges of attempted rape(In today’s terminology). Moses life started at a time when all boys born were killed and he was put in Nile river. He went from there to become Pharaoh’s son but soon had to flee from land because of a favor he did for God’s people. From Pharaoh’s palace he was in desert as a shepherd. What a tragedy and loss. After he brought people of Israel out of Egypt still had lot of struggles. Ruth became a widow. Hannah had to cry a lot and withstand lot of provoking and irritating. Jephthah was a prostitute’s son who was chased away from home by his brothers saying he was prostitute’s son. Samuel grew up in mist of Son’s of Eli( Hophni and Phinehas) who were wicked. He may had other pressures to follow them. David was fine till he was anointed. Then Bear and lion came against him. Had to fight Goliath. Was running initially from Saul and them from his own son Absalom. Committed Adultery. Elijah was in hiding for long time and had to run for his life. Nehemiah had to face challenges from Sambalat, Tobiah etc. Jeremiah was a weeping prophet who was lowered by ropes into the cistern; it had no water in it, only mud, and Jeremiah sank down into the mud. He was asked to put old rags and worn-out clothes under his arms to pad the ropes.He was pulled up with the ropes and lifted out of the cistern. Who was he- Whom God knew him before he was formed in his mother’s womb. Before he was born he was set apart and appointed as prophet to the nations. Daniel went to stay with lions. Peter had his disappointments. I don’t need to write about Paul. Apart from all persecution and other things he had to endure he had a thorn in his flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment him. He pleaded three times to Lord and was given the reply “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness“.

We all want to become one out of all this great men of God but the question is about things which will bring brokenness. Are we ready to accept it and move forward.
Now lets put ourself instead of them and ask some questions.
  1. Do you want to take a journey without knowing destination by faith with all problems or want God to bless you where you are?
  2. Do you want to settle in your land without any hardship. Not having the Bathel experience or Jabbok experience. Or face all hardship and inherit the promises of Abraham and Issac.
  3. Do you want to be in Jail on accusation of trying to molest your masters wife or would like to be an ordinary servant in his house without any problem. Other option is to become ruler of Egypt.
  4. Do you want to end your life as Pharaoh’s son in his palace or become the leader who took the people of Israel out of Egypt. Talked with God Face to face and saw the promised land from far off.
  5. Do you want to give birth to many sons whose name is not even mentioned in Bible or want to be the mother of Samuel whom all Israel from Dan to Beersheba recognized and attested as a prophet of the LORD.
  6. Want to settle in your home or want to be in hiding. Other options are Mount Carmel experience of fire coming down. Can also be the first man to raise a dead person.
  7. Be in King’s palace without any problem and end your life. Other option is go out and face threatening of people but still rebuild the broken walls of Jerusalem.
  8. Be happy and compromise on few matters here and there. But you are safe. Other option is go to lions den and finally the king declares that all people will serve the Lord whom you serve.
  9. Completed three missionary journeys and almost 14 Epistles and started church at various places. Easy option would have been to get healing and spent rest of life praising God and giving testimony that God healed you whenever you get a chance.

I can write many more questions but don’t think they are needed. John Wesley once said “The person who bears and suffers evils with meekness and silence, is the sum of a Christian man.” G. K.Chesterton says that “Jesus promised the disciples three things—that they would be completely fearless, absurdly happy and in constant trouble.” What Charles Kingsley had to say was “Pain is no evil, unless it conquers us.”

God does allows brokenness in peoples life. But as its says in Jeremiah 29: 11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Many times when we go through all pains in our life we think it is going to destroy us but no. God is breaking us so that he can mold and make us in the shape in which he wants us to be. You may not have answer to many things which are going on in your life right now expect the question- Why? Let me encourage by saying that God is in control of everything. As Paul says in 1 Cor. 10:13 “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it “.

Rejoice my friend the limit is not set by devil but by our God. He will never set the limits beyond what you can bear. Also he is preparing something which you never thought you will get in your life. May be for a purpose which God wants to accomplish through you only. May be God has seen you as Abraham or Joseph or Daniel or Paul or anyone whom God used to do things which others couldn’t do.

So there is Goodness in Brokenness!

Restoration as a result of Repentance

Jeremiah 15:15-21

15 You understand, O LORD; remember me and care for me. Avenge me on my persecutors. You are long-suffering—do not take me away;think of how I suffer reproach for your sake. 16 When your words came, I ate them;they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O LORD God Almighty. 17 I never sat in the company of revelers, never made merry with them; I sat alone because your hand was on me and you had filled me with indignation. 18 Why is my pain unending and my wound grievous and incurable? Will you be to me like a deceptive brook, like a spring that fails? 19 Therefore this is what the LORD says: “If you repent, I will restore you that you may serve me; if you utter worthy, not worthless, words, you will be my spokesman. Let this people turn to you, but you must not turn to them. 20 I will make you a wall to this people, a fortified wall of bronze; they will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you to rescue and save you,” declares the LORD. 21 “I will save you from the hands of the wicked and redeem you from the grasp of the cruel.”

All of us wants restoration in our life. There are many areas where we need to be restored. Some common areas are family, spiritual, marriage, friendship etc. Other meaning of word restoration is “the act of restoring something or someone to a satisfactory state” or “the state of being restored to its former good condition“.

We know that everything when it was made was perfect. We see that when God created the Earth then everything was perfect but later man destroyed it. Now when we see our own life then there are many things which we destroyed or are desorted due to our actions. They were good early but now the condition is worse. So now what to do?

We can see that the cause of most of this is either our sins or the wrong decisions we took or our unwanted actions. You know that you are not supposed to go to a place and you went. Now you want to come out. You went in to a relationship which had no approval from God and now you feel guilty. You want to come out. Many people try many short cuts. Some think drinking or taking drugs will solve their problem. Many try to do things which are below the basic moral standards.

God’s answer is simple-Repent. And also don’t repeat the things for which you have already asked forgiveness.

In the above Verses I have put Jeremiah is asking a question to God- Why? God also spoke many other things to him but the main point is repent.

Restoration can be achieved through repentance. Go to the root cause of problem and repent and come back in that matter and God will restore.

Restoration is possible as a result of repentance.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Biblical Response - Dec 21, 2012

By Tinku Thompson

Recently I have come across the idea going on around about Dec. 21, 2012.

This is what they say:-

“There are prophecies and oracles from around the world that all seem to point to December 21, 2012 as doomsday. The ancient Mayan Calendar, the medieval predictions of Merlin, the Book of Revelation and the Chinese oracle of the I Ching all point to this specific date as the end of civilization. A new technology called “The Web-Bot Project” makes massive scans of the internet as a means of forecasting the future… and has turned up the same dreaded date: 2012. Skeptics point to a long history of “Failed Doomsdays”, but many oracles of doom throughout history have a disturbingly accurate track record. ”

I thought I should write about here so that people who don’t know will get an idea about it and I will also try to give a Biblical response to it and also mention what Bible says about all this. Read it with an open mind and feel to ask me questions if you have any.

What is going to happen on Dec 21, 2012?

There is a common belief that according to Mayan Calendar the end of the world will happen in Dec. 21, 2012. The Maya calendar is actually a system of distinct calendars and almanacs used by the Maya Civilization of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica, and by some modern Maya communities in highland Guatemala. These calendars could be synchronised and interlocked in complex ways, their combinations giving rise to further, more extensive cycles. The essentials of the Maya calendric system are based upon a system which had been in common use throughout the region, dating back to at least the 6th Century BCE. It shares many aspects with calendars employed by other earlier Mesoamerican civilizations, such as the Zapotec and Olmec, and contemporary or later ones such as the Mixtec and Aztec Calenders. Although the Mesoamerican Calender did not originate with the Maya, their subsequent extensions and refinements of it were the most sophisticated. Along with those of the Aztecs, the Maya calendars are the best-documented and most completely understood.

THE WEB BOT PROJECT

More on the Web-Bot Project referenced in the show’s PR blurb quoted above: They seem to use a program ’spider’ to scan the internet for patterns of great complexity which they somehow read into current and future events. They use them to make predictions. My impression is, they see patterns, imagine they see vague sorts of events in the patterns, decide it’s a prediction, and when something in real life perchance matches up to their vague prediction they call it a “hit”.

Now it is believed that this Calender end on Dec 21, 2012 and hence people believe that its will be the ned of the world and thats the reason there is no more prophecy or events written beyond that day. Hence people think that world will come to an end on that day. If you want to learn more about it then you can search for it and you will get lot of information about it.

Actually, the Mayan calendar doesn’t actually end on 21 DEC 2012. It simply marks the end of an Age. The calendar is made up of a series of three calendar “circles”. They all just begin again, as they have in the past.

Why do people believe in it?

People believe it because they say that what ever it predicted in the past has come to pass and hence this will also come to pass. Also people have come up with few scientific discoveries to prove the fact that there will be a big disaster. Now some has even tried to interpret the Book of Revelation from Bible and come to some conclusion that Dec. 21, 2012 will be the last day of the world.

There has been few who have come up with their own ideas to support this. One example is Mataji Nirmal Devi. She has tried to quote many things which Jesus said in Bible and took few things from different places. But the fallacy there is that she said at one place “ But today it is the day I declare I am the One who have to save the humanity.” More information can be found on their web site about all her claims. A person who knows the bible can easily understand all the misinterpretation which is given on there. I am sure in the coming days many more will come and may have already come who will try to take advantage of these things. That will fulfil What Jesus Spoke.

What is Science saying about it?

Science and theology (study about God) has always been on conflict with each other starting with the idea of evolution and creation. Bible clearly speaks about creation and has nothing to say about Big Bang theory. Now the fine tunning of Earth out of all the planets of the universe itself shows that there is someone behind it and nothing is accident. So it shows that there is a intelligent designer behind everything and thats what we say as God. British scientists Hoyle and Wickramasinghe estimated that the chances of life evolving from the random shuffling of organic molecules is virtually zero. They calculated that there is only one chance in 1020 to form a single enzyme, and just one chance in 1040,000 to produce the approximately 2,000 enzymes that exist. However, Hoyle and Wickramasinghe point out that the production of enzymes is only one step in the generation of life. Therefore, they concluded there must be some type of Cosmic Intelligence to explain the origin of life. Hoyle compared the probability of life spontaneously generating from non-life as equivalent to the chances of a tornado producing a Boeing 747 from a junkyard.

Now Science has also certain things to say about Dec 21, 2012. There are people who claim that sun will be hidden behind the moon and it will not give light to earth and also few who says that there will be a sudden change in earth poles and change in gravitational forces.

Based on what is happenening with sun spots, and the Earth’s position in the Milky Way, doomsday is a real threat to our existence as we know it. Scientists also know the Frequency Hum in the Earth is Rising. Our Earth Hum was a constant 7.8 Cycle frequency. we used that 7 cycle format for almost all communications since it is the Baseline. In the Past few years, the Earth’s Hum is Changing. The Frequency is rising and has been recorded past 11 cycle format. Right now the Earth Raised about 4 solid cycles in frequency measurements. Scientists believe this raise in Frequency goes directly hand and hand with the Poles getting ready to flip. That’s right, Earths Magnetic Properties are changing. The North Side Will Soon Point South, and South Will point North. The Earth Will Flip 120 degrees. Also it speaks about Brain frequency and sine Waves. We know that Change in frequency affect the brains reception guidelines. In other words, If you use a frequency brain stimulation machine doctors can enhance, change, and alter a persons senses. If two frequencies are transmitted with a small gap between them, Like 400Hz and 410Hz The brain will even out the difference naturally make the brain produce a 3rd tone. This 3rd tone made by your brain is a pure Sine wave. The sine-wave will be a 10 Hz tone. Experimenting through the whole range of alpha and theta waves ( from 5 - 12 Hz) it was found that a combination of frequencies consistently caused a complete shift in consciousness. So when the Earths Frequencies finish their change, our senses and brain thought pattern will be seriously deformed. Our electrical body pulses that control every move your body makes, will adjust itself to the Earth.

What’s the response from a Biblical Perspective?

From a Biblical perspective I can say that we cannot be sure of this particular date. But the things which are mentioned as will happen will happen as many of the things are found in the Bible. Whatever is happening in the world simply proves that the Bible accound is clear. When we read the scientific facts then we can be more sure. There are many signs mentioned in the Bible as end time signs and we can see most of the things happening. So from a Biblical perspective we cannot be sure of the date but one thing is sure i.e. Earth will be destroyed as God’s Judgement.

What does Bible Say about End Times?

Now dear friend, you might be bit confused if you are not aware of the message of Bible. Let me give you a small idea about what Bible teaches about human beings and how can a person get salvation. After that I will write about End Times.

Now in the begining God Created the heavens and the earth. Now Bible says that God created the Earth in 6 days and on the Seventh day he rested. Thats why we have 7 days week. After he created everything he also Created Man i.e Adam. Now it says that God created Man in his own image. You may wonder why human beings are so different from all other animals. Man was created in the image of God. Now after that God also created women i.e Eve as a companion for Adam. So in God’s Creation man had a special place. Now God placed them in a Garden called Eden Garden and allowed them to eat the fruits of all tree expect one tree i.e. Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. But they didn’t obey and ate it and hence they sinned against God. There is a whole story as who tempted them to eat and all and if you are interested I will explain later but not in this post. So man was separated from God due to Sin. Jesus came in to this world to give salvation to the mankind which was lost in Sin. He was the Son of God and took a virgin birth. He died on the cross and was raised from dead on 3rd day. So now whoever believes in him have eternal life.

We will have to go to 1 out of 2 place- Heaven or Hell. Jesus said who ever will receive him will go to heaven and whoever rejects him will go to hell for eternal condemnation. When God created this world he created it so that Man will lead a good life. But we can see how sinful the Man has become on the earth. We hear of same-sex marriage, prostitution, abortion, people without shame ready to show their nakedness in media and Internet, films promoting ideas which are against the law of nature, pronography taking hold of people, people killing each other etc. We hear of reports that Wife killed husband to live with her lover. I don’t need to mention more but we can very well understand that man’s moral standards have gone down and the world which was created as a beautiful place by God has been polluted in every manner. We see that due to the things which man did the environment has also got effected. We also know of diseases like AIDS whose origin is in the sinful actions of man. It was always been God’s plan that Man should have one wife and they should remain loyal to each other. But we know whats happening all around the world. We have TV shows which promote evil practices like couple- exchange. All these things are abominable in the sight of God and due to all this we see that Bible predicts a Judgement of the Earth from God.

A Good parallel about present times can be found in the events which happened during the times of Noah. I will write about it in another post.

Now only way to save yourself from this eternal condemnation is to receive Jesus as your savior and lead a life which is pleasing to God. Basic Steps to Receive Jesus is:-

  1. Accept that you are a sinner and you need God.
  2. Believe that Jesus died for your sins and rose again.
  3. Confess Jesus as Lord of your life.

After this you can read Bible to know more about God and understand the things we are supposed to do. Also attend a good church so that you can grow in Jesus Christ.

So this world awaits a Judgement from God. But the question is are we prepared to face it when it comes. Some people think that there is no way to escape out of it but we know that there is a clear way out of it. This is a matter concering our eternity and we should be very serious about it.

Note:- I will try to give some of the signs mentioned in Bible regarding End times in next posts.