Saturday, September 29, 2012

More than a Carpenter (Free Books Inside)

I found that More than Carpenter was really persuasive when I was a faith-seeker for the Truth during my campus time at UiTM Samarahan. I have questions about Christianity – lots of questions… until I seriously encountered with Jesus of the Bible. Since then, my life is never been the same.” (Richard Angelus)
Quote from Josh McDowell's More than a Carpenter, page 5-8:
"My new friends issued a challenge I couldn’t believe. They challenged me to make a rigorous, intellectual examination of the claims of Jesus Christ—that he is God’s Son; that he inhabited a human body and lived among real men and women; that he died on the cross for the sins of humanity; that he was buried and was resurrected three days later; and that he is still alive and can change a person’s life even today.

“I took the challenge seriously. I spent months in research. I even dropped out of school for a time to study in the historically rich libraries of Europe. And I found evidence. Evidence in abundance. Evidence I would not have believed had I not seen it with my own eyes. Finally I could come to only one conclusion: If I were to remain intellectually honest, I had to admit that the Old and New Testament documents were some of the most reliable writings in all of antiquity. And if they were reliable, what about this man Jesus, whom I had dismissed as a mere carpenter in an out-of-the-way town in a tiny oppressed country, a man who had gotten caught up in his own visions of grandeur?"

I had to admit that Jesus Christ was more than a carpenter. He was all he claimed to be. Not only did my research turn me around intellectually, but it also answered the three questions that started me on my quest for happiness and meaning. But as Paul Harvey says, that’s the “rest of the story.” I will tell you all about that at the end of this book. First, I want to share with you the core of what I learned in my months of research so that you, too, may see that Christianity is not a myth, not the fantasy of wishful dreamers, not a hoax played on the simpleminded. It is rock-solid truth. And I guarantee that when you come to terms with that truth, you will be on the threshold of finding the answers to those three questions:
Who am I?
What is my purpose?
What is my destiny?    
Think Big. Start Small. Go Deep.
October 2012 FREE Book
I’m giving away ONLY 3 copies of More than a Carpenter by Josh McDowell & Sean McDowell. You are welcome to get a copy for yourself. Do these 2 things:
  1. Comment below “Rich, give me one copy___(Your name). I want to make a rigorous, intellectual examination of the claims of Jesus Christ in the Bible"
  2. E-mail me at or send message to my Facebook your real name, phone no. and your postal address. Thank you.
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Friday, September 28, 2012

Reflection on Paul’s Letter to the Romans: ‘Would you call Him?’

[This ‘Summary reflection on Romans’ had been published on FES Malaysia website. To read, click HERE. For ‘How to read Romans’, click HERE.]

Imagine this:
Both of us are infected with serious skin diseases. We want to attend an open-to-all grand wedding feast. We want to go, but we have serious skin diseases. We both realize it, but we ignore it. It doesn’t hurt us that much anymore because we are used to it – in fact, we think that it is so common that hardly anyone would care about it. It’s normal, we say. No big deal…

Imagine again:
Paul suddenly come and said, “Both of you have a serious skin diseases! [Shout] You might lose your hands and legs… even your life if you don’t go for emergency operation. Furthermore, don’t expect that they will ever gonna welcome you to the feast. However,I assured you, if you go to this Good Doctor, you’ll be cured 100%. This is His Name card. Please, please, call him!

Would you call him?

So it is with Paul’s letter to the Romans. For the most part, Paul was focuses on how sinful people can be restored to a right relationship with a Holy God through the atoning death of Jesus Christ. He tells us that we have a serious problem, namely, we are sinners. He writes,

As it is written: ‘There is no one righteous, not even one” (Romans 3:10NIV).


For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

In other words, there is not escape – death end. We have to admit, like it or not, that we are sinners.

Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned” (Romans 5:12).

And to make it worst, he writes,

For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23a).

By now, there’s no hope in attending the wedding feast… or is there?

After Paul states the real conditions of our depravity, he then reveals our need for God’s righteousness. He proclaims that only by faith in the crucified and risen Lord that we can have this free-but-costly-gift of God’s righteousness.
God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

That’s amazing! It’s like, while we still having skin diseases, the Feast Master invites us to come... well, only if we’re clean and cured, of course. Now, it’s up to us either we want to accept the invitation or not. If we believe in Christ, God will make us righteous; we will be “declared righteous” (Roman 2:13). God provides us the righteousness He demands of us.

The call is to believe and to be cured; to trust the Good Doctor and to let Him do the operation; to accept the invitation to the wedding feast; to meet the Master and to have a relationship with Him. On the Name card, Paul assured,

If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved” (Romans 10:9-10).

And in case we missed it, he writes a remark behind the card, P.S:

For, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved’” (Romans 10:13).

This is my summary reflection on Romans:
is humanity’s problem.
Salvation is God’s solution.
Faith in Jesus is sinner’s hope for eternal life.

What is your response?
Would you call Him?
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Don’t Read Newspapers early Morning! Why?

Your word is a lamp to guide my feet
    and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105NLT)

Habislah... saya kena saman nanti...
Let me finish and complete my line: Don’t read newspaper early morning before you start your day with the Word of God. Many people program themselves every morning (or every evening) by reading newspaper at mamak stalls & kopitiams (for West Malaysians) or open-air shops (for East Malaysians) or kedai kopi (for all). Many showered their thoughts on newspaper that contain both positive and negative articles. In my opinion, our local newspapers have more negative articles than any news combined. No offend. Dangerous, but quite beneficial. Scary, but one has to tell. Undesirable, but we need to know. Therefore an old advice is very good indeed, “Read with the Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other”, but make sure you follow the sequence – God’s Word first.

I suggest that you not read the newspaper first thing in the morning. Save that for later. Instead, feed your mind and soul with something that is more inspiring, uplifting and significance at that hour. Instead, feed your mind with God’s Word at that hour. It’s better for your soul for the rest of the day to take a moment to be thankful for being blessed by God with another day as you listen (through your reading) and speak (through your prayer) to God. Do that first in the morning before you read about the latest tragedies that often occupy the front pages of our local and national papers. A good time to begin reading the Word of God is in the morning when you are fresh and can retain most Word at an optimum level. First offering of the day is to the Lord. Jesus said seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and He will give you everything you need (Matthew 6:33).
Newspapers later – first, the Word of God.


 P.s: If you need a plan to Read the Bible in One Year and you’re within my reach, please ask for a copy ya. I find that reading the Bible systematically is very helpful.
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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Ten Commandments of Friendship

You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get people interested in you
(Dale Carnegie).

In the world where people talk more with their handphone, chat frequently in Facebook, and caring more about their pet than face-to-face conversation – the art of firsthand human communication is slowly erode. Almost all had become instant and super-fast. A little word, then leave! The art of communication is not like that, friendship is not like that. Friendship needs time and cultivation. Building friendship is a joy worth pursuit. Will Rogers writes, “We can be mighty rich, but if we haven’t any friends, we will find we are poorer than anybody”.  

Come, let’s build genuine friendship!  

Here I want to share with you (I quoted it from a book long time ago) – Ten Commandments of Friendship. Read, apply and be blessed.
  1. Speak to people – there is nothing as nice as a cheerful word of greeting.
  2. Smile at people – it takes seventy two muscles to frown but only fourteen to smile!
  3. Call people by name – the sweetest music to anyone’s ear is the sound of their own name.
  4. Be friendly and helpful – if you would have friends, be friendly.
  5. Be cordial – speak and act as if everything you do were a real pleasure.
  6. Be genuinely interested in people – you can like everyone if you try.
  7. Be generous with praise, cautious with criticism.
  8. Be considerate of the feelings of others – it will be appreciated.
  9. Be thoughtful of the opinions of others.
  10. Be alert to give service – what counts most in life is what we do for others!

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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Jesus was not a Handsome Man – Well, it doesn’t change anything at All: He is Awesome!

In prophesy of the coming Messiah (a Hebrew title meaning ‘the anointed one’; the Greek word ‘Christ’), the Old Testament prophet Isaiah says:

My servant grew up in the LORD’s presence like a tender green shoot,
like a root in dry ground.
There was nothing beautiful or majestic
about his appearance,
nothing to attract us to him” (Isaiah 53:2NLT).

Jesus Christ, according to Isaiah, was “like a root in dry ground”. In other words, he was not impressive or significant in the eyes of the world. He may be overlooked at and unnoticed during his childhood. The prophet added that Jesus was neither handsome nor charming like a prince. It’s almost as if God went out of His way to make sure that people were not distracted by “Jesus the handsome man”, so that He could instead wow the world with His divide purpose, characters and perfect Being. 

Jesus, my Jesus, doesn’t impressed people with His 6 pack abs, fair & lovely face, and bling-bling clothes. He came to the world not to display His luxury sport car, gold ring and curl-blond hair with zebra’s stripes. He came to show us how to walk in obedience with God that causes Him to reflect God’s beauty. He let God’s perfect character be reflected from within Him, and let His true appearance shine.

Beside He has “nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance” – He was also almost having nothing that the world called attractive or impressive about Him. He had no maid servants, yet He was called Master. He had no high-education schooling, yet He was called Teacher. He had no commercialized medicine, yet He was called Healer. And do you know? He had done no evil and sin not (which is consider freaking-foolish by the world), yet He “was pierced for our rebellion, crush for our sins. He was whipped so we could be healed” (Isaiah 53:5NLT).

Ultimately, He displayed the riches of His Grace on the rugged cross. The cross that the world thought was for losers is in fact God’s Glory revealed for the Winner of the universe. He was buried like a criminal yet He rose again (the world is pulling his hair now). He lives today, yes – He lives today to shows that God is the Greatest! It was ‘a root in dry ground’ that done all of these amazing things. It was Jesus; the Man who had changed the course of history forever. Praise, Glory and Honor to God in the Highest! Amen.

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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Slow Down oh My Soul

What I do today is important
because I’m exchanging a day of my life for it
” (Unknown).

Admittedly, it’s hard for me to be consistent in my fellowship with the Lord. To be frank, I don’t have it all figured out.  And surely I have my own struggles with Christian living and disciplines. But one thing that I’m very assured of is that – I have, by God’s grace, a relationship with the Lord. Yet embarrassingly many Christians including myself often neglect to cultivate or to renew that relationship every day. We are in the state of, what most accurate and condense language of today called – busyness. The archenemy of intimate divine relationship with the Lord is busyness. Busyness that is closely tied to worldliness – getting caught up with this society’s agenda, objectives and activities to the neglect walking with the Lord.

Busyness in your life overcrowds your mental resources, leaving no possibility for the quiet moment with the Lord. Mountain of assignments and workloads, hundreds of responsibilities, gathering of properties, achieving dreams, aim for worldly successes, etc. all these though are not evil in itself have robbed your time with the Lord God Almighty. You got to stop! Slowing down… rest and pause – stop! God wants to speak to you. God want to guide and refresh you. The Lord wants a fellowship, an intimate relationship with you, but you will never recognize it until you slow down and allow time for Him. Psalm 39:6 says, “We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing”. Therefore, slowing down will ya?

Slowing down to pray. Slowing down to listen. Slowing down to cultivate relationship. Set aside time for the Lord. Not leftover time, not throwaway time, but quality time. Time for contemplation, meditation and reflection. Unhurried, uninterrupted time. Bill Hybels in his book Too Busy Not to Pray writes, “You can’t become an authentic Christian on a diet of constant activity, even if the activity is all church related. Strength comes out of solitude. Decisions that change the entire course of your life usually come out of the Holy of Holies.” The fact is: God don’t need you, you need God. Therefore, come to Him for Life. Give up your best time for the Lord. You’ll never regret it!

Psalm 103(NLT)
“LORD, my heart is not proud;
My eyes are not haughty.
I don’t concern myself with matters too great
Or too awesome for me to grasp.
Instead, I have calmed and quieted myself,
Like a weaned child who no longer cries
For its mother’s milk.
Yes, like a weaned child is my soul
Within me.
O Israel, put your hope in the LORD –
Now and always.

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