Posts from the ‘Only in Christ; one pleases God’ Category

Genuine Vs Counterfeit – Pleasure, Pride & Power.

1John 2:16
For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.

The above scripture shows you what exemplifies a great life in this sinful world… the lust of the flesh (that desire for wicked pleasure), the lust of the eyes (that thirst for corrupt power), the pride of life (selfish pride), which is nothing but the veil that blinds the unbeliever to the redeeming merit of the Lord Jesus Christ as presented in the Gospel (2Cor 4:3). The Bible teaches us that the believer must walk by faith and not by sight (2Cor 5:7) and in doing so, it qualifies saving faith as that sixth sense which overrides all our five senses because our flesh naturally from the fall of Adam, is wired to resist the good pleasure of God, but faith teaches us to say no to ourselves and say yes to God. In any case, when you take a look at the end result of our indulging in our own pleasure, when you have had all that you have wanted, whether it be: drunkenness, gluttony, drug addiction or nymphomania, when have had all of what pleases you personally, you are left feeling very squeamish if not diseased. The reason our pleasures handed to us from Adam are so morbid is because we are not God, we weren’t meant to serve our own interest. Instead we were made to serve the Lord and make his pleasure our own (Psalm 37:4).

John 12
24 Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. 25 He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.

Rom 5:17
17 For if by the one man’s (Adam’s) offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)

When we look at the above two verses we realize how the free will of man traces its way after the sovereign will of God, like water flowing through a channel made in the mud by hand (Prov 21:1). Keeping this in mind, when we look at the above scripture we realize that the dying to ourselves, which must happen in the life of a believer, is not God calling you to commit social suicide but instead it is the saving power of the Jesus’ Spirit working in the believer (Phil 1:6), in the bringing the believer to repent and believe in God. When Jesus said He didn’t come to call the healthy but sinners (Mk 2:17), we realize that we cannot receive the righteousness of God unless we lose our terribly fraudulent self-righteousness & acknowledge we are nothing but sinners in turning to God. Take a look at the thirst for corrupt power, people will do anything to climb the corporate ladder, sleep with their bosses, bribe their way to get a promotion, bear false witness against their colleagues, then when you look at politics we know that in most socialist countries the best upgrade a gangster or religious baba/conman can get is to become a politician, the whole world practically goes about trying to gain the whole the world at the cost of losing their soul (Mk 8:36).

Gen 3
4 But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.

The above verse sights the Biblical account of the fall of man in the Garden of Eden. Notice how Satan baits the woman, he says you will be like God, in the sense you will have your own standard of what is right and what is wrong, separate from what God has set. Verse 6 of Genesis 3 is where the fall happens because the woman actually believes Satan and all the lust of the eyes, lust of the flesh and pride of life appears to take root in Adam & Eve here. In doing so the living faith that was in them perished but not just for them but for us all who are their progeny. Ever wondered Jesus was born of a virgin? It is so that he would have no part of Adam’s sin (Heb 4:15). It is no wonder that today people are more willing to listen to spirit mediums who communicate with demons impersonating the dead but these same people have the least interest in knowing what the good Lord says in the Bible, because it doesn’t quite whet their rebellious appetite, which is all thanks to fall of Adam.

Romans 8:28
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

When you look at the above scripture, you might begin to realize that unlike man, the reason good comes from God pursuing His own purpose/interests, is because the truth is God and God, man is not God, and to go against this simple and yet critical truth/principle is to dangerously err but we do it everyday unknowingly, and the Bible in this context is quite right in saying: the fool says in his heart- there is no God (Psalm 14:1); because that is the kind of ungrateful lives we are living and then we wonder where’s the joy all gone and why the suicide rates are so high. Still, God in his mercy keeps us alive each day, blessing us with sunshine, rain and all the other pleasures of life, which we can never put a price on. Now take a look at our selfish pride, besides it flying in the face of the Almighty Triune God, you also come to realize that selfish-pride and self-respect are mutually exclusive, the things selfish pride will make an unbeliever stoop to, is something no self-respecting believer will have anything to do with. For any person who takes pride in being very smart/learned, strong or attractive will senselessly speak ill of the other in his attempt to sabotage people’s perception concerning how the other excels in that field, which that person himself self-relates with so proudly. You will also notice that people who speak with great haughtiness concerning themselves can actually do very little, even for themselves. It is as the Bible says that the truth in not in them.

Psalm 37:4 (Pleasure)
4 Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Jeremiah 9:23-24 (Pride)
Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”

Romans 8 (Power)
15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.

Do you remember the parable of the pearl of great value in Mat 13:45-46, the Gospel is compared to this pearl of great value, where a merchant in realizing its value (1 Cor 2:14) relinquishes his self-righteousness in receiving Jesus Christ as His Lord/Master & Saviour? From Jesus we learn that a man cannot believe in the Gospel unless he repents (Jn 12:24-26), which is to say that he willingly and happily renounces his self-righteousness in receiving the righteousness of God. The scripture I have quoted above, tell us what exactly is the pleasure, pride and power a Christian is genuinely brought to yearn for. We must remember that we were made in the image in God (Gen 1:26) that was broken in Adam but restored in Christ (Rom 8:29), and so the pride, pleasure & power we ought to reflect must be all for the glory of the Triune God Almighty.

P.S. I DON’T SUPPORT #GayRight or #GayPride for the same reason I DON’T SUPPORT the Right to murder, or the Right to rape, or the fallen Pride murderers/rapists take in their capacity to sin. After all these are all sins deserving of death but our world is lost ever since the fall.

The Glory of the Good we do belongs to GOD (not us).

Eph 2:8-10
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

From the fall, man in receiving to himself a righteousness of self, is a law to himself and a god to himself. It is no wonder that a natural man’s attitude is indifferent towards God owing to that fallen need to serve himself in everything he does. Hence, fallen man has made the pursuit of serving himself as the chief end of his life, a wicked end justified no doubt by the most devious means because the truth is that man is no God and so his self-centered pursuit of life is nothing short of dastardly. Even when he does something good, it is with the motive of serving his own interest, so there is never anything that is genuinely good that comes out of man because man doesn’t believe God is God, man on the contrary feels that he is god and that is why he rejects the truth about God because he sees no point in serving God’s interest over his own.

Mat 6:33
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Luke 17:10
So likewise you, when you have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.

The other day I called Amazon to thank the advisor, whom I had fired the previous day because of the delay in delivery of my order. The advisor escalated my complaint and my order was delivered the very next day. I thought it would please God to display some neighbourly love by calling Amazon and appreciating that advisor for being patient with me and doing his job. So, I passed on a note of appreciation to his colleague over the phone and through an email feedback form as well. When I had finished the call, I felt almost in the 7th heaven (figurative) for doing this but I soon realized that the glory of the good I do belongs to God and was not for me to wallow in and delight in concerning how good I am myself. This incident brought me to write on this subject that the glory of the good we do belongs not to us but to God.

Mat 10:42
And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.

Mat 6:5
And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. Truly I tell you, they already have their reward.

True religion is about pleasing God and serving His interest, for hypocrites however, religion is all about pleasing people and serving their own interest. So, just as there is such a thing as temporal blessing, we ought to understand that these hypocrites who do good to serve their own interest and rewarded in full here on earth itself, where their every blessing is susceptible to the destruction/corruption of moth and vermin, possibly reflecting their own spiritual condition before God. I once attended a Bible study in Mumbai where a UK national asked this question: “Is it ok to serve God out of the desire of being rewarded?”, I then happened to understand that the fall of Adam is so ingrained in people that many Seek the Lord out of covetousness, & these people wish to serve the Lord with the intention of actually serving themselves. Indeed, God is no man’s debtor (Rom 11:33-35) and he will pay us back according to our deeds but Salvation is when we have the mind of Christ and God’s interest become our interests (Ps 37:4).

Mat 6:19-21
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

We must understand that the power to covert the heart, is of God (Ezek 36:26-27), we know that God does not look at outward appearance but at the heart (1Sam 16:7). Also, the Bible teaches us that life is in the blood, so figuratively the heart which pumps the blood in our bodies is seen as the source of our being. Therefore, the evil thoughts and actions that proceeds from the heart of natural man (Mat 15:18), shows he is corrupt at the very source of his being. However, since God has the power to covert the heart, when He looks at a regenerated soul, what God is look at or looking for is His own handiwork within us (Phil 1:6) and there is none can thwart (Job 42:2) His mighty saving right arm i.e. His Son Jesus Christ (Ps 98:1).

Jer 31:33 (in the context of Eph 2:11-16)
“But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.

To conclude, we can never freely obey God unless we are brought to desire it and enjoy it, which is what God brings about in His people. He gives us all a heart that seeks after Him and prizes Him over everything else in our lives (Mat 13:45-46). Out of the this regenerated heart flows our actions and intentions, which are God’s handiwork and for His own glory, making evident that His elect are a new creation in Christ (2 Cor 5:17) because the glory belongs all to the Triune God Almighty for our Salvation.

True Christians: Earth’s Rightful Stewards!

Romans 8 (in the context of Rom 5:17)
19 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.

I am prompted to write this because a fellow countryman of mine working in the US sent me this video of Trump choosing Dr. Robert Jeffress to be the embassy in Jerusalem. In that video, I heard Dr. Jeffress speak out clearly against Islam as being a lie from the pit of hell and Judaism’s having no salvation without Jesus Christ. I told this friend of mine that I agreed with whatever was there in that video and that it was Christian culture that has shaped the west, which still remains a conducive environment despite its backsliding into self-righteousness, liberalism and humanism. I do believe in the equality of all people but I believe this equality is determined in the sight of God but somehow liberalism wants to treat all people as equal by equaling their fabricated religious system to the truth about God, which has made the west what it is, a refuge for people, where making a living is easier and the quality of life is better; not because those people are special in and of themselves but because it’s a society is built on the framework of God’s law. I must however say that the Mosaic Law does allow foreigners into its society who must abide by the Civil Law of God Almighty in that land or suffer the repercussion for acting contentiously. Unlike Islam, there is no Jizya levied on them for not being of the same faith. The Moral Law on the other hand requires the tithe to be paid by the believer and not the unbeliever because the more the gospel progresses, the more believers there will be and the more that society shall progress under God, which is unlike the Jizya that keeps the Non-Muslim in their Non-Muslim state to maintain the Jizya coming and thus furthering strife in the land.

Mat 13:32
31 Jesus put before them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a man planted in his field. 32 Although it is the smallest of all seeds, yet it grows into the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.”

I heard my Prime Minister Narendra Modi once say that he wanted to see Mumbai become like Shanghai but I don’t know how that is going to happen with nearly 80% of Indians still worshiping animals, trees & stones. Surely there are many Non-Christians who are very rich but riches is not critical in determining the quality of life. Look at the Middle-East for instance, the Arabs have more money than they know what to do with it, they surely aren’t rich for their ability to enterprise, rather they are rich only for their oil, which makes me sometimes wonder if that is curse or a blessing… looking at all the wars and strife it has caused. Surely, that strife has come to them from God, who converts curses to blessings through His work on the cross (Gal 3:3) and blessings into curses to those who deny the truth of His Son (Mal 2:2/Ps 2:12). Though my country may have some of the most intelligent people on the planet, most of the people who rule over them (politicians) are uneducated, which is not surprising when their gods are animals, trees and stones.

Mat 28
18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

Take China for instance, its economy has surged to second place after the USA, because China is where the Gospel is growing the most aggressively in the world. Btw. It might interest you to know that though Gautama Buddha existed from 480 to 400 BC, according to the Tibetan historian Bu-ston, states Warder, the earliest collection of Buddhist text called the Tripataka was written around 1st century AD, a few decades after the gospels. This explains why many of the Buddhist teachings sound a lot like the teachings of Jesus in the Gospel. The Chinese, I think have had enough of this rip-off called Buddhism and they are now after the real thing, which is why they are doing so well. Today, corporations in China are inculcating Biblical values in their employees because they have noticed it encourages the right work ethic, which in turn builds employer-employee relationships and helps businesses succeed.

Romans 3
3 For what if some did not believe? Will their unbelief make the faithfulness of God without effect? 4 Certainly not! Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar. As it is written:
“That You may be justified in Your words,
And may overcome when You are judged.”
5 But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unjust who inflicts wrath? (I speak as a man.) 6 Certainly not! For then how will God judge the world?

23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified [g]freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

To to love and respect people as you do yourself, is commanded in the Bible (Mat 22:36-40) but it is totally another thing to buy their lies about God by treating it at par with God’s truth revealed in Christ. For how you can consider people’s misplaced sentiments over God’s truth (Rom 3:3), unless you are an unbeliever who has no sight of God in the way you go about life (Jn 3:3). This is the main reason I oppose the mass influx of refugees into the west because it will turn out to be a cultural washout of Christian values in that land. The liberals however support this mass immigration because being self-righteous and godless themselves they couldn’t care any less. Liberals have no sight of God, these fools think of people equality in all the wrong terms especially faith, and they are paying dearly for being so hell-bent on making their country a shit-hole. Take Sweden for example, their homeless are still on the streets while refuges are provided furnished homes, plunging that nation further into debt. Btw. Sweden is now the rape capital of Europe, while in the UK, refugees are feeling so welcomed that they freely barge into people’s homes and gang-rape their daughters and wives, just like the militants do in Kashmir.

John 1 (refers to having faith in Jesus)
12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

Col 1
19 For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, 20 and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.

To conclude, it is important to note that this world continues to exist only because God has plans to restore this world in His Son. Unlike the various concocted religions of the world out there, Christianity will not spread under the edge of the sword, nor by way of deception, nor by appealing to the people’s sinful appetite but by the power of God alone.

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Begging & Spiritual Poverty in India!

Did you know that India’s Standard & Poor’s rating stands at “BBB-” implying we are adequate in capacity to meet our financial commitments but adverse economic conditions or changing circumstances are more likely to weaken our capacity to meet these financial commitments! India’s population is currently 1.345 billion, and according to ICE 360° Survey conducted in 2016 over 90% of the average monthly household income is under Rs. 35000. What worsens the matter is that there are over 400 thousand beggars in India as reported by NDTV in 2015, while DNA reported in 2016 that over 60 thousand children and kidnapped and forced into begging each year. Add to this the 21.5 million who work for the government with about 3 million in central government and 185 million employees working under state government. The reason am counting government employees it because these jobs are supported through the taxes paid by the common man. This is that socialist’s utopia that defines a democratic nation, that the people who are actually inching the nation onward are marginal in number but these are not helped in anyway, instead these are taxed further for the benefit of the rest who are sitting on their butts. It is for this reason that many of NASA’s scientists are Indian and the reason why Bose couldn’t find a market for his sound engineering in India (his home country) as he did in the USA on the count of its Christian environment, which makes it the land of opportunity like no other.
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Coming back to India, there is nothing wrong with giving alms to people who are in need but the people who are in need are those who are struggle to see a better day, not those who are living off that religious gesture of alms giving. Sometime when I see beggars lined up outside Hindu Temples and Mosques, I think its almost like a set up to make the rich look good with their generosity that comes across as convenience to ease their conscience, as over people trying to help their neighbours learn to make a living for themselves. I think able-bodied, doesn’t necessarily mean handicapped but people who are willing to work hard for a living despite their physical or mental setbacks… which in other words is to carry your cross and follow Jesus, wherever it is you are in life (Lk 14:27). The Bible teaches us that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and in him we learn something called dignity of life(Jn 14:6), which is a far cry from the self-righteously abusive mafia run begging business we see here in India. Yes, Jesus did heal and was sympathetic towards many beggars and lepers but after their encounter with Jesus they did not go back to being vessels of the people’s sympathy. Rather they became bold witnesses for the gospel standing against even people in power to speak out for Jesus (Jn 9:3-8, 16-27).

Mat 5
3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

1 Cor 15:10
10But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace to me was not in vain. No, I worked harder than all of them — yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.

I don’t know how many of you have watched this movie “Slum Dog Millionaire”, the maiming of people in that movie in preparing them to beg is as real as it gets in that movie. There have been newspaper reports where doctors have taken bribes from beggars to maim them, that people may take pity on them and give them money. The problem is not so much about people being financially poor but about them being spiritually poor and living in denial of it. If we were to look at the scripture mentioned above, we see that salvation involves coming to terms with God’s saving grace, that unmerited favour by which we learn how filthy our self-righteousness is before the Majesty of a perfect Triune God, who saves us in Jesus Christ. By this grace we receive in Christ, we receive a spiritual rebirth, which makes God interests our own interest and gives us that capacity to do His will and good pleasure (Eph 2:8-10).
Phil 3:14
I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Phil 4:13
13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

In India, there are many different kinds of beggars. Some of them are even revered by the people. Take the eunuchs for instance, whose blessing or curse is seemed to carry a lot of power as believed by many because they have seemingly given up their manhood for such a lifestyle of spiritual power. I remember my stupid cousin once offered a eunuch Rs. 5 in the local train to bless his little sister, his sister whom he today doesn’t talk to anymore. My colleague too, recently had a son and he laughingly told us that eunuchs came demanding Rs.5000 since he had a baby boy and he had to give it to them or else they would have taken his baby away. I lost my temper just listening to that… a bunch of castrated men come demanding a ransom from a father else they will kidnap the baby & this fool thinks it was the right thing to pay them the money. My righteous disgust at this reverence for eunuchs was however met by reproof from another fool of a colleague, who said that eunuch have supernatural powers in brings curses or blessings to pass and he said this with a tear rolling down his cheek. Also, I need to mention that according to the telegraph UK, there were about 2 million eunuchs in India as of 2014, who live in groups under a eunuch guru and make a living through begging. The funny thing, people who become eunuchs, do so because there’s money in it. It’s just like a beggar maiming himself to become subject for the people sympathy. It’s not a nice thing to live at the mercy of people, I get it but this is the curse of a godless society where people are not religiously tutored to love their neighbours as themselves. The masses from the fall of Adam think they are gods to themselves and so they will only help those who call upon their self-righteous pity or trigger their unholy fear because that is how people who are a law to themselves function.
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Mat 22
36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Jesus has said that you can tell a tree by looking at it fruit (Mat 7:17-20) and when you look at how intricately beggars fit in from a sense of culture and religion in India, you come to know that what we are dealing with here is really a social problem fabricated by a pagan belief system. You must understand that there would no supply if there was no demand and so since the rich and powerful want to feel good in the self-righteousness, there is therefore a market for beggars in this country which is of no help to national growth as its only aim is to attempt the satisfy the godless pursuits of those who are in power in an environment where ignorance is bliss.

Satiated in God Vs Idolatry!

Psalm 37:4
Delight yourself in the Lord; And He will give you the desires of your heart.

James 1:12-13
13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.

The above two verses tell you what it is like to be satiated in God and what it is like to try and satisfy yourself with idolatry. Idolatry is simply the means of serving your own ungodly interests by way of fabricating gods for your worship, pursuing a life of greed, sexual immorality or a desire to wield power from that pride of self. Being satiated by God on the other hand is about using all the means God has provided you in life to serve His interest and good pleasure. It is only possible to know God through Jesus Christ (Jn 1:18), unto whom God draws the elect (Jn 6:44) and offers His salvation (Jn 1:12-13), transforming us each day into the likeness of His Son (Rom 8:29) for we who belong to God, belong to Christ (Rom 8:9), made and restored for Jesus’s glory (Col 1:16-18). Now, let’s take a look at a couple of scriptures that highlight the absolute frustration of self-idolatry compared to the pure satisfaction of serving the Lord.

Psalm 1
1 How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!
2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.
3 He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season
And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers.

John 4
13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

If we were to go back to the fall of Adam & Eve in Gen 3:1-6, we see from verse 5 where the idolatry of self really started, and it is for this reason the Lord Jesus Christ says that man can either serve money or serve God, not both (Mat 6:24) because nothing serves our own vested interest like money. There is nothing wrong with earning money, money can very well be used to serve God’s righteous interests i.e. furthering the gospel, nourishing ourselves & feeding our families. The problem is when, we see money as the means as furthering our rebellion against God, and in doing so, fund our own destruction (Prov 8:36). The thing about idolatry is that, we value only that which serves our ungodly interests and only for so long as it does, after that everything becomes dispensable and disposable because from the fall, our lives are founded on a lie that we are gods to ourselves (Gen 3:5) and so unlike God who does good in serving His own interests, we do only the most heinous things in serving nothing more than our own interests because the truth is the Triune God Almighty is God and we are not.

Isaiah 49:15
“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!

Mat 10
37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.

So, the only rightful place for God in our lives is FIRST PLACE, over our neighbours (friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances). If anything but God, takes FIRST PLACE then you will see yourself doing the most heinous things in justifying that idolatry. I must add the world is filled with the worst of hypocrites who calls what is good: evil and what is evil: good (Is 5:20). In Jesus’ time, the Pharisees claimed Jesus did all the good he did, not by the power of God but by the power of the chief of demons Beelzebul but that is exactly how it is with the people of the world, who are gods to themselves, their wishful thinking allows them to blurt out any damn nonsense which they desire others to accept as truth, simply because it came out of their mouth but the truth is these fools aren’t God, only the Triune God Almighty is God. Therefore, it is only the word of God that endures forever (Is 40:8) because it is the truth of The Triune God Almighty, who really is God and hence His word goes forth and doesn’t return void (Isaiah 55:11). Unlike rejecting the vested lies of fallen men, rejecting the truth of God revealed in Christ only works towards our destruction (Jn 3:16-18) according to the righteous will of God.

Psalm 34
8 O taste and see that the Lord is good; How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!
9 O fear the Lord, you His saints; For to those who fear Him there is no want.
10 The young lions do lack and suffer hunger; But they who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing.

Mat 10
28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

I would like to conclude by saying that to fear anything more than God is idolatry as well because Psalm 34:10 says that even the most fearsome unbelievers, will never be satiated in life with everything they have but those who seek and fear the Lord, whose lives are accountable to their Lord-&-Saviour Jesus Christ, these shall be satisfied in God & not be left in want of any good thing (Mat 6:33).

In what context are we… NOT TO JUDGE?

Prov 26 (Old Testament)
4 Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you yourself will be just like him.
5 Answer a fool according to his folly, or he will be wise in his own eyes.

Very often when I correct people on their lifestyle choices, I am supposedly schooled on what the Bible teaches concerning YOU SHALL NOT JUDGE. I happen to understand that people find their security in numbers (not in God) and when I express my disagreement on homosexuality, abortion, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism, I suddenly see people who claim to believe in “live and let live” turn fascist, from a sense of insecurity that undermines the sweet lies they have been living by, which helps them maintain their complacent and lukewarm nature towards the truth about God (Rev 3:16). The road to damnation is indeed broad (Mat 7:13) thanks to the fall of mankind in Adam, and for the many who swim against the flow by the redeeming power of Christ, these are labeled by the world as homophobic, Islamophobic and haters of humanity, but God has already warned us in His word (Prov 26:4 & Mat 7:6) of the kind of backlash we would suffer in coming after him (John 15:19). This is the cost of discipleship which we are to take into account when we take that decision to carry our crosses and follow Jesus (Luke 14:26-33), lest we be the soil where our spiritual growth is choked by the worries of the world being unable to bear fruit in Christ (Mat 13:22), which brings God-the-Father to prune these away in His time (John 15:1-6). Surely the cost is great (Mat 5:11-12) but the harvest is priceless (Mat 13:44) [afforded to us who persevere by the redeeming power of Jesus Christ (Phil 3:14 & 4:13)] and justifies the cost in every way because the Triune God Almighty is deserving of such sincere worship in truth and in Spirit (John 4:23-24).

Mat 7 (New Testament)
1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.
6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

Taking a look at the Mat 7:1 presented above, we see that the context in which we are told not to judge is in the sense that we are to practice what we preach. Take for instance, liberals in the USA who speak out against “gun violence” because the death toll in 2018 is so far 2,213 with 3,772 injuries on the whole while these same liberals actually support abortion, where these licensed murders across USA alone is 166,971 in 2018 so far. So, when you consider the reasons for abortions are: 0.3% in cases of rape, 0.03% in cases of incest, 0.1% in cases of risk to maternal life, 0.8% in cases of risk to maternal health, 0.5% in cases of fetal health issues and 98.3% being elective due to socio economic reasons; you understand how much these liberals value their fun and how little they value their God given responsibilities, which as opposed to gun-rights is not in the interest of helping civilians defend themselves in the case of a threat. So, for the liberal fool who does not fear God (Prov 1:7) it really is no big deal to hide a mountain behind a molehill by justifying abortions with reasons like rape, incest and maternal health. Now, if liberal hypocrisy allows them to do that, it therefore is well within their lifestyle of double standards to vouch for gun-control to make their self-righteousness look good being estranged from God and all truth. However, it is as the Bible says in Prov 8:36 about these humanist fools that: those who hate God eventually love death in any and every form.

Ezek 3
18 When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
19 Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.

Eph 2
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

It’s amazing to see the extent to which people are self-centered that they will actually use the “Word of God” to excuse their sin and hear nothing that will make them feel uncomfortable in their sin. To add to this, you also have foolish sympathizers who will senselessly side with the #LGBT and every other apostate religion saying, it is not for you but for God to judge. On the contrary, in bearing witness to the Gospel we who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as called upon by God to judge these godless fools that they may repent unto Christ and not perish forever in the fires of hell (Acts 2:38). Also, knowing the kind of hypocrites unbelievers are, these same people who tell us to keep our mouths shut concerning their sin are very capable of telling God on the day of judgement that there was no one to correct them and show them what is right when they were alive and well upon the earth, else they would have turned from the sin and believed the Gospel. Surely, God is sovereign and God is good, and it is in His sovereignty and He decrees us to speak out against the sins of the world (Ezek 3:18-19/Eph 2:10) and call them to repentance that they may believe and live a holistic life, delighting no longer in their sin but in the righteousness of God revealed to us in Jesus Christ.

Numbers 11 (Old Testament)
16 The Lord said to Moses: “Bring me seventy of Israel’s elders who are known to you as leaders and officials among the people. Have them come to the tent of meeting, that they may stand there with you. 17 I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take some of the power of the Spirit that is on you and put it on them. They will share the burden of the people with you so that you will not have to carry it alone.

Luke 10 (New Testament)
After this the Lord appointed seventy-two[a] others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. 2 He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. 3 Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.

If you look at the scripture mentioned above you will understand that preaching of Gospel is based on the understanding that you one must repent in order to believe in the Gospel and unless one does not realize his/her sinful nature before the divine majesty and holiness of God, there really is no truth in the saving faith a person has received. Remember, Jesus came to called call sinners unto Salvation and not self-righteous fools, who are wise in their own eyes (Luke 5:32). So, we who are filled with the Holy Spirit are not called to tell sinners of the wonderful plans God has for their lives despite their sin as though God Almighty exists to wait on their every need in exchange for some religious attention. Instead, we who are filled with the Holy Spirit are given a living spirit to pursue the righteousness of God and His Gospel, and in doing so, call out the grave nature of the people’s sin that they may repent and turn to God, for as much as God is glorified in His good justice as He does so in His great mercy, it is in His mercy in which He delights, because it is by the power of His resistible grace that He draws people unto Himself in Christ, propitiating/overcoming their sinful nature by the power of Jesus’ blood and in doing so conforming their nature to His own likeness, because that is how we were made… in His image (Gen 1:26/Rom 8:29).

Rev 13 (look at this in the context of John 16:7-15)
17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.

I would like to conclude by simply saying this, the thoughts of the world and ways of the world, is nowhere compared to thoughts of God and ways of God, which as Isaiah 55:8-9 describes is as different as the high heavens over the earth. So, for a person who is fallen in Adam, who is a god to himself/herself, he/she naturally likes to use every wicked instrument in his/her arsenal to rise over and belittle his neighbour, and we know that is wrong because the truth is no man/woman is God, except of course for Jesus who is the God-the-Son incarnate as Man to be that unblemished sacrifice for all sin. For most part when Christians point out the sins of people in this godless world, they perceive it as belittling and what further agitates them is that there is absolute truth in that discerning judgement, which the unbeliever finds it very hard to deal with. So, the unbeliever finds it very hard to die to that that god-identity he/she has of himself/herself (John 12:24-26) and prostrate (bow out) before God and His righteousness revealed in Jesus (John 1:17) who truthfully is God. Yes, the Christian lifestyle is one that is set against the grain of this unbelieving world but God has promised in His word that He is going to reclaim this world to Himself in His time (Dan 2:31-45 & Col 1:16-20) and unbelief is only here to make hay while the sun shine because God sovereign making the rain fall and sun shine on the righteous and the unrighteous alike (Mat 5:45).

Then God said “Let there be light”

I am writing this post to extend my support to my Sister Najma Zaman (in Christ), who is conducting a study for her Masters in Psychology on the effect of Christian practice in people’s lives. A study, which required me to reflect on Gen 1:1-3 over a period of two weeks and check for any improvements on my well-being by way of a psychometric test carried out before and after the reading period.

Let’s look at Gen 1:1-3 & John 20:20-22…

Gen 1:1-3
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. 3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

John 20
20 And when He had said this, He showed them both His hands and His side. The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.

When we look at the above verses, we get this idea that there was something formless and void, which God illuminated by simply saying “Let there be light”. Such is the power of God’s word. In this context, it would help you understand that prophesy in the Bible is not just God looking into the future and tell His people what shall come to pass but He instead defines the future by saying what He shall do in that time by the sheer power of His will. So too, the Bible is referred to as the Word of God because in it is that life giving breath of God, which gives the elect spiritual life. This is the spiritual life God breathed into Adam after he formed him out of dust, which Adam lost in his disobedience (Gen 2 below). This spiritual life was/is restored to God’s elect by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus, who paid the price of Adam’s disobedience with His perfect obedience to the point death (Phil 2 below), thus taking our place in death to pay the wages of our sins that we may have life in Him (Rom 6:23).

Gen 2
7 And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Phil 2:
8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
….
11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Reading Rom 5:17 should help you understand the context of the two verses, mentioned above. Gen 1:1-3 also has some startling similarity with baptism, where Rom 6:4 says that in baptism we die with Jesus to our sin and are raised to new life. It’s also interesting to note from Joshua 1:2 that the Israelites had to enter the Promise Land by crossing the Jordan. The waters of baptism therefore represent repentance where we are quickened from that spiritual death, which defines our self-righteousness, to spiritual life God offers His elect in the Lord Jesus Christ (John 12:24-26). About the Holy Spirit descending on Jesus when He was baptized, we must remember that the reason Jesus was baptized because He shares two complete natures perfectly i.e. Man (without sin) & God. So as much as it was not God the Son who died on the cross but the Man Jesus who did, so also it was not God the Son was baptized but the Man Jesus, to indicate He is the first born of the brethren leading them unto Salvation (Rom 8:28/1Pet 2:24). Let’s take a look at the baptism account of Jesus as given in John 1.

John 1
29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. 30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. 31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. 32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. 33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

So, what is the take home from this study? Well, for long as you out there in the world living for yourself and serving your own interest, you do not have spiritual life… your life lacks form and is void. The conversion however happens when we rest our faith in Jesus, who is the light of the world (Jn 8:12) and as we conform each day into His likeness, we become the light of Christ to a world (Mat 5:14) sold to darkness and bondage of sin. Remember, we were made in the image of God (Gen 1:26), meaning we were made to reflect that very nature of God in our being, and so in dying to ourselves and living for God, our spiritual ideology takes shape as we find divine purpose in life. It is also intriguing to note that scientifically as you journey into the depths of the oceans, there comes a point where there is no light and the creatures here that produce their own light as some of the most hideous creatures you’ve seen. I guess that is how spiritual death (sin) manifest itself in the lives of the reprobate that the farther they are from the righteous of God (light of Christ), the more hideous these creatures are who live by their self-righteousness (making their own light). Luke 5:31-32 is a nice verse to read in this context.

Luke 5
31 And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. 32 I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

I shall now close this post, hoping that my effort in reflecting on Gen 1:1-3 in the light of scripture compliments Najma’s efforts in her study of Christian beliefs/practice positively affecting people’s lives. All the best dear Sister.

God bless!

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