Monday, September 28, 2015

Jesus sees Individuals in the Crowd (He Knows You)

He talked personally to a lame man
Jesus said, ‘Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.’ He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t even have time to eat. So they left by boat for a quiet place, where they could be alone. But many people recognized them and saw them leaving, and people from many towns ran ahead along the shore and got there ahead of them. Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he begin teaching them many things
(Mark 6:31-34, NLT).

The passage above describes Jesus, after an exhausting day, going off with the disciples across the lake. Beginning near Capernaum, Jesus and the Twelve sailed “to the far side” of the Sea of Galilee (John 6:1), to a remote area near Bethsaida on the north. Figuring out where Jesus and his party were headed and seeing their boat, the crowd followed them along the shore, hiking the distance on land.

When Jesus saw the huge crowd, he could have herded the disciples back into the boat and sailed away again, or he could have dismissed the people. After all, they were pestering him, crowding out his time alone with disciples (You must understand that Jesus himself as a human being was also need to rest. Imagine how tired he was). Instead, Jesus “had compassion on them” and spent most of the day teaching them and healing their sick.

Jesus saw the “huge crowd” certainly, but he also saw individuals and knew their needs. Jesus is awesome! No one was lost in the crowd. And when Jesus saw these people, he knew each one’s deepest needs and felt with them and for them. He had compassion. Jesus ministered with and to ordinary men and women, just as assorted as people today. Some in the crowd were simply curious about this new teacher; some were needy, desperate for a miracle; many had gnawing questions about Jesus’ identity and supposed power. Despite the self-centred motives of most of the crowd, Jesus took them seriously and met their needs.

Think about this: Jesus sees you in the crowd. He knows you by name. He hurts with you and wants to be with you, to heal your wounded spirit. Don’t let anything keep you from Jesus. He doesn’t expect you to get your act together before approaching him. He made you; he knows you; he knows your strengths, potential, and weaknesses. He just want you to come, to allow him to work in you and through you. When you do come, Jesus meets you where you are. Jesus is awesome and he is seeing you as individual because – He cares.

Best Blogger Tips

Jesus wants Us to Count the Cost of Discipleship

Picture taken from:
If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it. Anyone who receives you receives me, and anyone who receives me receives the Father who sent me
(Matthew 10:38-40

In Matthew 10:32-40, Jesus laid it all out for the disciples: Follow Him would come with a high cost. Thus all who wished to follow him should consider the cost before signing up.

Jesus’ followers would encounter enemies on all sides, even in their own homes. They would feel great pressure to turn back, to deny the truth and their Lord. Christ must be everything to them, more important than any family member or loved one. Jesus was not encouraging disobedience to parents or conflict at home; rather, he was showing that his presence demands a decision. In the early church, Jews who became Christians would be excommunicated from the synagogues and often shunned by their families. Jesus did not come to make such divisions happen, but his coming, his words, and his call inevitably causes conflict between those who accept him and those who reject him.

When Jesus used this picture of “take up your cross and follow me”, the people knew what it meant. Death on the cross was a Roman form of execution, the most shameful execution. To follow Christ means denying self and carrying one’s cross, being prepared to die for him. Earlier in these verses, Jesus had described how the disciples should go about their ministry – staying in homes of worthy people (Matthew 10:11-14). Here he added that even giving “a cup of cold water” (10:42) would be important – serving others, not just preaching.

Think about this: The best way to find life is to loosen your grasp on earthly rewards so that you can be free to follow Christ. You will risk pain, discomfort, conflict, and stress as you acknowledge Christ’s claim over your relationships, possessions, and career. But in doing so, you will experience the benefits of following Christ, namely here, having a Life and knowing the Father. Do not neglect your family, but remember that living for God should be your first priority. Jesus is worthy to risk all!


Best Blogger Tips

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Jesus, the Shepherd Who Knows Our Name

I am the good Shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own
(John 10:14,

When I see a flock I see exactly that, a flock. A rabble of wool. A herd of hooves. I don’t see a sheep. I see sheep. All alike. None different. That’s what I see.

But not so with the shepherd. To him every sheep is different. Every face is special. Every face has a story. And every sheep has a name. The one with the sad eyes, that’s Droopy. And the fellow with one ear up and the other down, I call him Oscar. And the small one with the black patch on his leg, he’s an orphan with no brothers. I call him Joseph.
The shepherd knows his sheep. He calls them by name.

When we see a crowd, we see exactly that, a crowd. Filling a stadium or flooding a mall. When we see a crowd, we see people, not persons, but people. A herd of humans. A flock of faces. That’s what we see.

But not so with the Shepherd. To Him every face is different. Every face is a story. Every face is a child. Every child has a name. The one with the sad eyes, that’s Sally. The old fellow with one eyebrow up and the other down, Harry’s his name. And the young one with the limp? He’s an orphan with no brothers. I call him Joey. The Shepherd knows His sheep. He knows each one by name. The Shepherd knows you. He knows your name. And He will never forget it. “I have written your name on My hand” (Isaiah 49:16).

Quite a thought, isn’t it? Your name on God’s hand. Your name on God’s lips. Maybe you’ve seen your name in some special places. On an award or diploma or walnut door. Or maybe you’re heard your name from some important people – a coach, a celebrity, a teacher. But to think that your name is on God’s hand, on God’s lips… my, could it be?
[From When God Whispers Your Name by Max Lucado]


Best Blogger Tips

Monday, September 21, 2015

Jesus endang Tuhan Hari Sabat (5 Cara Nuan Nyambut Hari Minggu)

Nyadi sakali Jesus bejalai ba umai gandum, maya Hari Sabat. Leboh bala murid Iya bejalai enggau Iya, sida lalu belaboh ngumpol tangkai gandum. Nya alai ko sida orang Parisi bejako enggau Jesus, ‘Peda nuan, sida murid nuan ngelanggar Adat kami, sida enda tau ngereja pengawa ti baka tu leboh Hari Sabat!’ …Lalu ko Jesus ngujong ka jako Iya, ‘Hari Sabat digaga ka guna mensia, ukai mensia digaga kategal Hari Sabat. Nya alai Anak Mensia ti Tuhan Hari Sabat
(Mark 2:23-24, 27-28, Berita Manah ka Rebak Diatu).

Bala murid Jesus lapar, nya alai sida belaboh ngumpol tangkai gandum benong bejalai maya Hari Sabat. Nya ngasoh orang Parisi mantah Jesus. Sida terit bendar nitih ka Adat orang Juda. Maya Hari Sabat (kenu sida) enda tau nyendia pemakai, berapi pun enda tau, bejalai lebih ari sekilometer enda tau, nyuman orang sakit enda tau. Semua nya ngaga kerja ti ngelanggar Hari Sabat, ko sida. Hari Sabat digaga sida baka ari ngulit – hari tusah. Tang Undang-Undang Allah Taala ukai digaga kena nusah ka orang (Amat mayoh orang agi tekelalu bebasa ka Adat Mensia, datai ka enda peduli enti bisi mensia mati baka dalam “Perang Ugama”). Ko Tuhan Jesus, “Hari Sabat digaga ka guna mensia, ukai mensia digaga kategal Hari Sabat.” Ka guna mensia, awak ka ngidup lalu ngemansang ka mensia.

Uji kitai ngaga Hari Minggu “ka guna mensia” baka tu: 1) Ngaga iya Hari Kudus, hari Tuhan, hari sembiang. Ingat, Jesus udah angkat idup baru leboh Hari Minggu. Roh Kudus nurun mega Hari Minggu. Nya alai Gereja ti terubah kelia udah nukar Hari Sabat (sepatut ya Hari 6) ngagai Hari Minggu; 2) Maya ari tu kitai nyerah ka pendiau kitai serta pengawa ti dikerja kitai saminggu-minggu ngagai Allah Taala. Anang kitai baka semut ti bejalai kia-kia aja lalu enda kala ngetu. Kitai mensia mesti ngetu lalu berunding – Nama kabuah pengawa kitai? Nama tuju pendiau kitai ditu di dunya? Ngisi perut lalu mati? Tauka idup ngereja pengawa Tuhan Jesus? Bisi kitai nulong Allah Taala ngaga dunya tu manah agi endor diau ka samoa orang? Hari Minggu tu meh maya kitai nyerah ka semoa pengawa ngagai Tuhan awak diberkat ka Iya;

3) Ngereja pengawa badas maya Hari Minggu baka nulong orang ti seranta, ngabas orang sakit tauka ngagai orang tuai. Kena ari tu merekat ka orang lain; 4) Hari Minggu meh ari kitai belelak laban tu ukai ari bekeja berat baka ari bukai. Tu ari gawai, ari nyamai, hari gaga ati iya nya hari “special”; 5) Kena Hari Minggu maya nuan berati lebih agi ka Jako Tuhan Jesus. Macha, belajar serta ngenung ka Perintah Allah Taala. Enggau semoa cara tu kitai merati ka Hari Sabat tauka Hari Minggu (enggau jalai ti lain mega), kitai udah ngasoh Jesus nyadi “Tuhan Hari Sabat.” Sigi ya, Jesus Kristus meh Tuhan Hari Sabat!

Trima Kasih Tuhan Yesus ka Hari Minggu ti diberi Nuan ka guna kami. Tulong aku beguna amat ka iya, ukai enggau ngelusu aja, ukai enggau gawa aja baka ari bukai – tang kena ngelantang serta nyuman ka diri enggau orang lain. Nyaga meh tubuh aku enggau semengat aku awak ka Nuan meh Tuhan atas Hari Sabat dalam idup aku. Amen.

Best Blogger Tips

Jesus Washes Our Feet

“[Jesus] rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. Then He came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, ‘Lord, are You washing my feet?’ Jesus answered him, ‘If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.’”
(John 13:4-8,

I don’t understand how God can be so kind to us, but He is. He knells before us, takes our feet in His hands, and washes them. Please understand that in washing the disciples’ feet, Jesus is washing ours. You and I are in this story. We are at the table. That’s us being cleansed, not from our dirt, but from our sins…

Don’t miss the meaning here. To place our feet in the basin of Jesus is to place the filthiest parts of our lives into His hands. In the ancient East, people’s feet were caked with mud and dirt. The servant of the feast saw to it that the feet were cleaned. Jesus is assuming the role of the servant. He will wash the grimiest part of your life. If you let Him. The water of the Servant comes only when we confess that we are dirty. Only when we confess that we are caked with filth, that we have walked forbidden trails and followed the wrong paths.

We tend to be proud like Peter and resist. “I’m not that dirty, Jesus. Just sprinkle a few drops on me and I’ll be fine.” What a lie! “If we say we have no sin, we are fooling ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (1 John 1:8). We will never be cleansed until we confess we are dirty. We will never be pure until we admit we are filthy. And we will never be able to wash the feet of those who have hurt us until we allow Jesus, the one we have hurt, to wash ours.

You see, that is the secret of forgiveness. You will never forgive anyone more than God has already forgiven you. Only by letting Him wash your feet can you have strength to wash those of another.
[From A Gentle Thunder by Max Lucado. Scripture quote above, mine.]

Best Blogger Tips

Jesus Doesn't Chant a Mantra or Wave a Wand. No Angels. No Helps.

There are many examples of Jesus’ authority, but I’ll just mention one of my favourites. Jesus and the disciples are in a boat crossing the Sea of Galilee. A storm arises suddenly and what was placid becomes violent – monstrous waves rise out of the sea and slap the boat…

The very storm which made the disciples panic made Jesus drowsy. What put fear in their eyes put Him to sleep. The boat was a tomb to the followers and a cradle to Christ. How could He sleep through the storm? Simple, He was in charge of it.

Then he arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. But He said to them, ‘Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?’” (Mark 4:39-40).

Incredible. He doesn’t chant a mantra or wave a wand. No angles are called, no help is needed. The raging water becomes a stilled sea, instantly. Immediate calm. Not a ripple. Not a drop. Not a gust. In a moment the sea goes from a churning torrent to a peaceful pond. The reaction of the disciples? Read it in verse 41: “they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, ‘Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!’
[From The Great House of God by Max Lucado]


Best Blogger Tips

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Jesus Promised Both Authority and Persecution but "Don't be Afraid"

Jesus appeared to his disciples after the Resurrection. 
But don’t be afraid of those who threaten you. For the time is coming when everything that is covered will be revealed, and all that is secret will be made known to all. What I tell you now in the darkness, shout abroad when daybreak comes. What I whisper in your ear, shout from the housetops for all to hear! Don’t afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:26-28, NLT).

After explaining that the disciples would be opposed and persecuted (Matthew 10:16-25), Jesus detailed some of the persecutions to come and how the disciples should react. Christ and his Message would tear apart families – nothing could be more painful than a brother betraying his brother “to death” or a parent causing his or her child to be killed (10:21). In addition, they would be hated by all types of people. Jesus’ disciples would share his authority, but they would also share his sufferings. Then Jesus explained that his followers should be patient and faithful throughout the persecution, knowing that they have a reward that is certain.

The key phrase in this section is “Don’t be afraid” – of those who threaten and of those who cannot touch the soul. The apostles should boldly proclaim God’s truth, shouting it “from the housetops for all to hear!Jesus’ followers should be far more fearful of disobeying God than of facing martyrdom. We are not to be afraid of people but in awe (respect-fear) of God. Later, many of the disciples suffered and died for following Jesus. Yet their bold witness ignited a fire that spread all over the world (You can read all of this in the Book of Acts and John Foxe’s Book of Martyrs).

Think about this: Whether the Bible translation reads “Fear not,” “Have no fear,” or “Don’t be afraid,” the message is clear. Yet often we pull back from sharing our faith because of what might cost us in relationships, income, or social status. Believers in many parts of the world face harsh persecution, living out Jesus’ predictions of verse 10:21. God asks for bold witness to his truth, men and women whose actions and words shout the truth about Jesus. Hear your Saviour’s words as he commissions you: “Don’t be afraid.” Amen.

Best Blogger Tips

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Jesus Deka Meri Kitai Ai Anggor Baru (Pesan Baru) ngau Kambut Kulit Baru (Pendiau Baru)

Kambut kena nyimpan ai anggor dulu kelia
Nyadi sakali, sida murid John Pemaptisa enggau orang Parisi bepasa. Sekeda orang datai ngagai Jesus lalu nanya iya, ‘Nama kebuah bala murid John Pemaptisa enggau orang Parisi bepasa, tang bala murid nuan enda?’ Ko saut Jesus, ‘Kati dalam runding kita, orang ti ngabang ngagai orang ti nikah tau enda makai? Tentu enda! Sagi-agi iya ti baru bebini nya bisi enggau sida, sida tentu enda ngereja utai nya. Tang timpoh deka datai endor iya ti bebini nya deka angkat ninggal ka sida. Leboh hari nya datai, sida nadai pemakai’
(Mark 2:18-20, Berita Manah ka Rebak Diatu).

Murid John Pemaptisa enggau bala Parisi suah bepasa. Ngayah tuboh diri, debu engkah ba pala, moa dipeda “tusah baka orang ti minta puji” (Matthew 6:16). Tang suah pengawa nya di luar aja – di ati sida enda berubah. Nyamai kitai ngelala orang ti baka nya rebak diatu mega.

Ko Jesus: “Sagi-agi lelaki ke ditikah nya mengkang begulai enggau sida, sida enda bepasa” (Mark 2:19, Bup Kudus Baru). Bala nabi udah madah pasal pengerami tikah Allah Taala empu enggau Bansa Israel ila (Isaiah 62:4-5). Diatu Jesus empu madah ka diri pengantin lelaki nya, iya nya Allah Taala amat. Ketegal Yesus enggau sida maya nya, sida enda iboh bepasa. Sida patut gaga ati serta rami. “Maya deka datai alai lelaki ke ditikah nya deka diambi ari sida, nya baru sida deka bepasa” (2:20, BKB). Maya Yesus enda enggau sida agi, maya nya meh sidak patut bepasa. Bepasa ukai kena mantai moa ti tusah tang bepasa enggau ati ti berubah. Bepasa laban kitai rindu ka Iya, rindu deka ninga jako Iya, rindu ka besambiang ngagai Iya.

Enti kitai ka mereti pesan Jesus tu, kitai enda tau enda berubah runding, berubah perangai baru ulih nyambut pesan ngau jako Jesus tu: “Nadai siko orang deka nampal gari baju ngena chebik kain ti agi baru, laban tampal ti baka nya tentu deka ngasoh gari baju nya balat agi charik. Nadai mega orang nyimpan ai anggor ti baru ba kambut kulit ti udah dikena. Enti iya nyimpan ai anggor dia, kulit nya tentu pechah, lalu ai anggor enggau kambut nya tentu deka tebasau. Iya ti bendar, kambut kulit ti baru endor nyimpan ai anggor ti baru!” (Mark 2:21-22, Berita Manah).

Kain ti baru” ngau “ai anggor ti baru” nya meh pesan ngau jako Tuhan Jesus Kristus. Nya meh Berita Manah ngau Roh Kudus ti dibai Jesus ngagai kitai. “Ai anggor ti baru” tu meh ngasoh kitai rami lalu “mabuk” semengat kitai. Nya meh ngasoh kitai muji Tuhan, rajin ngereja pengawa Tuhan, lalu ngulih ka kitai ngereja segala macham pengawa ti nyelai baka dipeda dalam Bub Kereja Rasul. Pia mega, badu kitai baka kambut kulit ti lama. Orang ti baka nya enggai berubah nyadi orang baru, lalu enggai meda gaya Gereja ti mansang. Serah diri ngagai Tuhan baka kambut kulit ti baru awak ka Jesus ti pengantin lelaki ngisi kitai enggau anggor ti baru, iya nya pesan Iya, serta Roh Iya ti ngaga kitai baru – lalu kitai deka gaga ati! Diatu (ukai ila aja) meh kitai udah bulih pengidup baru enggau serega.

Isi aku, O Tuhan Jesus, enggau ai anggor Nuan, iya nya pesan jako Nuan ti badas, lalu enggau Roh Kudus Nuan. Asoh aku berubah amat dalam ati nyin, nyadi orang baru ngena runding enggau perangai baru ti nitih ka iring Roh Kudus. Amen.

Best Blogger Tips

Jesus will Descend from Heaven and Proclaim "No More!"

An intriguing verse is found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.”

Have you ever wondered what that command will be? It will be the inaugural word of heaven. It will be the first audible message most have heard from God. It will be the word which closes one age and opens a new one.

I think I know what the command will be. I could very well be wrong, but I think the command which puts an end to the pains of the earth and initiates the joys of heaven will be two words: “No more.”

The King of kings will raise His pierced hand and proclaim, “No more.”
The angels will stand and the Father will speak, “No more.”
Every person who lives and who ever lived will turn toward the sky and hear God announce, “No more.”
No more loneliness. No more tears. No more death. No more sadness. No more crying. No more pain.

As John (the apostle) sat on the Island of Patmos surrounded by sea and separated from friends he dreamt of the day when God would say, “No more.” This same disciple who had heard Jesus speak these words of assurance over half a century before now knew what they meant. I wonder if he could hear the voice of Jesus in his memory. “The end will come.”

For those who live for this world, that’s bad news. But for those who live for the world to come, it’s an encouraging promise. You’re on a land mine, my friend, and it’s only a matter of time: “In the world you will have tribulation…” Next time you are tossed into a river as you ride the rapids of life, remember his words of assurance.

Those who endure will be saved. The Gospel will be preached. The end will come.
You can count on it.
[From And the Angels Were Silent by Max Lucado]


Best Blogger Tips

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

A Worshiping Frame of Mind


Best Blogger Tips

Jesus Read, Believe and Taught the Old Testament. How about You?

This is an excerpt from late Dr. John R. W. Stott’s Students of the Word (2013) published by IFES. Christ was a controversialist. He engaged in constant debate with the religious leaders of his day. They disagreed with him, and he disagreed with them. And in every question or conflict, he regarded Scripture as the final court of appeal. In particular, Jesus criticized both the Pharisees and the Sadducees. He criticized the Pharisees for adding to Scripture the traditions of the elders. And he criticized the Sadducees for subtracting from Scripture – subtracting its supernatural element. So to the Pharisees, Jesus said: “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandments of God by your traditions” (Mark 7:9). And to the Sadducees, he said: “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God” (Matthew 22:29).

It is beyond question that our Lord Jesus Christ submitted to the Old Testament as the word of his heavenly Father. The decisive factor for him was what was written. That settled every uncertainty. And there is no example of Jesus contradicting Scripture, only of his submitting to it and fulfilling it. You may ask: “What about the six antithesis in the Sermon of the Mount, recorded in Matthew 5? (“You have heard that it was said, but I say…”). There are some liberal scholars who imagine that Christ was contradicting Moses. No, he was contradicting the scribal misinterpretations and distortions of Moses. He didn’t say: “You’ve seen that it was written, and I say something different.” He was not contradicting what was written in the Scripture, but what was said (in the oral tradition). So the Gospel evidence is incontrovertible. In heart and mind and life, Jesus humbly submitted to the Old Testament as to God’s word written. And because Jesus did, so must we.

There are only two possible ways to escape this logic. That is to conclude Jesus was mistaken or was pretending. It’s important for us to reflect on these alternatives.

Was he mistaken? The argument goes like this: “Jesus was imprisoned by his incarnation in the limited mental reach of a first century Jew. He believed in the authority of Scripture, as did all his Jewish contemporaries. But like them, he was mistaken.” This is commonly called the theory of kenosis – from the Greek for “he emptied himself” (see Philippians 2:7). In short, he emptied himself of his supernatural knowledge, so would make mistakes. And among these mistakes was his erroneous view of Scripture. It does seem to be true that Jesus, during his life on earth, was not omniscient, for he asked questions, which suggests that he didn’t know the answers. He specifically said that he did not know the day or hour of his return (Mark 13:32). Only the Father knew the date of the second coming. On the other hand, he knew what he didn’t know. He wasn’t ignorant of his limits. And knowing the limits of his knowledge, he stayed within those limits and never strayed beyond them. While he was not omniscient, he was inerrant. He taught only what his Father had given him to teach and hence he made no mistakes. So this teaching of the Old Testament was not mistaken. It was true.

Was he pretending? The argument goes like this: “Jesus knew perfectly well that Scripture was not infallible. But because his contemporaries believed it was, and because he didn’t want to upset them, he went along with their error. He pretended to hold it as well.” This is the accommodation theory: that he deliberately accommodated himself to their view. This theory is equally intolerable. To attribute to Jesus Christ a conscious deception is a slander upon him and upon his integrity. It is derogatory to him. He never hesitated to disagree with his contemporaries if he believed them to be mistaken. He criticized their views on tradition, on the Sabbath, on fasting, and he rejected their political notion of messiahship. So why should he not dissent from their view of Scripture if he didn’t agree with it? The accommodation theory would make Jesus guilty of the sin he most detested, and that is the sin of hypocrisy.

Here are two attempted escape routes both of which declared his teaching to be mistaken. According to the first, Jesus’ mistake was involuntary, he couldn’t help it, he was imprisoned in the mentality of a first century Jew. According to the second, his mistake was deliberate. He chose to pretend that he agreed with his contemporaries when he didn’t. According to the first, he was deceived, according to the second, he was a deceiver. Both kenosis and accommodation must be firmly rejected. They seriously discredit the honesty, integrity and authority of the Son of God. Against these slanderous speculations we hold that Jesus knew what he was saying – and he meant it – and it is true. So we must believe and teach it as well.

Here are my (Richard’s) challenge to you:
Our Lord Jesus Christ read, believed and taught the Old Testament Scripture.
How about you? Do you read the Old Testament like Jesus does?
Do you believe that the Old Testament (together with the New Testament) is the Word of God?
Do you studies it diligently and taught it to the people of God?
If you’re a Christian, follow the commandments and the example of Jesus.

Best Blogger Tips

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Jesus Became a Curse for Us. Jesus Chose the Nails.

Through the eyes of Scripture we see what others missed but what Jesus saw. Jesus “cancelled the debt, which listed all the rules we failed to follow. He took away the record with its rules and nailed it to the cross” (Colossians 2:14, NCV).

Between His hand and the wood there was a list. A long list. A list of our mistakes: our lusts and lies and greedy moments and prodigal years. A list of our sins. Dangling from the Cross is an itemized catalog of your sins. The bad decisions from last year. The bad attitudes from last week. There, in broad daylight for all of heaven to see, is a list of your mistakes.

God… penned a list of our faults. The list God has made, however, cannot be read. The words can’t be deciphered. The mistakes are covered. The sins are hidden. Those at the top are hidden by His hand; those down the list are covered by His blood…

This is why He refused to close his fist. He saw the list! What kept Him from resisting? This warrant, the tabulation of your failures. He knew the price of those sins was death. He knew the source of those sins was you, and since He couldn’t bear the thought of eternity without you, He chose the nails.

The hand squeezing the handle was not a Roman infantryman. The force behind the hammer was not an angry mob. The verdict behind the death was not decided by jealous Jews. Jesus himself chose the nails.
[From He Chose the Nails by Max Lucado]


Best Blogger Tips

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Jesus Reminds Us to Be Ready for Anything (He Will Be with You)

Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves. But beware! For you will be handed over to the courts and will be flogged with whips in the synagogues. You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are my followers. But this will be your opportunity to tell the rulers and other unbelievers about me. When you are arrested, don’t worry about how to respond or what to say. God will give you the right words at the right time. For it is not you who will be speaking – it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you
(Matthew 10:16-20,

[You may want to read Jesus Commissions the Twelve: Responsibility to bring the Message and to Care for the Messenger. Click Here]

The key instruction in this passage is “Beware!” battles lay ahead, and the apostles needed to be prepared – shrewd, harmless, and ready for anything. They would need to be unafraid of conflict but also able to deal with it with integrity. Jesus warned them that the Gospel would not be warmly welcomed in all places (even in the “synagogue” which was the common place for worship, they will be persecuted).

At times the disciples would face outright antagonism. This would be more than mere differences of opinion or unfriendly families and communities. The opposition would come from religious and authorities (like we, Malaysian Christians, are ‘mildly’ opposed). The apostles would be arrested and could face harsh punishment simply for believing in Jesus and telling others about him. But these persecutions would provide opportunities for presenting the Gospel. Later, the disciples did experience these hardships (see Acts 5:40; 12:1-3; 22:19; 2 Corinthians 11:24). Interestingly, the word “martyrs” comes from the Greek word for witness or testimony.

Jesus said, “Don’t worry about how to respond or what to say.” Some mistakenly think this means believers do not have to prepare to present the Gospel because God will take care of everything. The Bible says, however, that we are to make carefully prepared, thoughtful statements (Colossians 4:6). Later one of these commissioned men, Peter, would write, “If someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it” (1 Peter 3:15). Jesus was telling his followers to prepare but not to worry. He promised special inspiration for times of great need. Be encouraged.

Jesus warned the apostles to focus on their mission and turn their defence into a testimony of faith. We must assume that as we live for Christ and tell others about him, we will face persecution (physically or mentally or socially or all of these and perhaps more. But spiritually we will be empowered and strengthen by God). At those times, we can thank God for the opportunities and remember that Christ has “overcome the world” (John 16:33) and in him we will too. 


Best Blogger Tips

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Jesus: The One Who Purifies Our Hearts

The [oil] refinery for petroleum and other products what your heart should do for you. Refinery takes out the bad and utilizes the good. We tend to think of the heart as the seat of emotion. We speak of “heartthrobs,” “heartaches,” and “broken hearts.”

But when Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart” (Matthew 5:8), He was speaking in a different context. To Jesus’ listeners, the heart was the totality of the inner person – the control tower, the cockpit. The heart was thought of as the seat of the character – the origin of desires, affections, perceptions, thoughts, reasoning, imagination, conscience, intentions, purpose, will, and faith.

Thus a proverb admonished, “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life” (Proverbs 4:23). To the Hebrew mind, the heart is a freeway clover-leaf where all emotions and prejudices and wisdom converge. It is a switch house that receives freight cars loaded with moods, dead emotions and convictions and puts them on the right track.

And just as low-grade oil or alloyed gasoline would cause you to question the performance of a refinery, evil acts and impure thoughts cause us to question the condition of our hearts… The heart is the centre of the spiritual life. If the fruit of a tree is bad, you don’t try to fix the fruit; you treat the roots. And if a person’s actions are evil, it’s not enough to change habits; you have to go deeper. You have to go to the heart of the problem, which is the problem of the heart…

And Jesus’ statement rings true: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” Note the order of this beatitude: first purify the heart, then you will see God.
[From The Applause of Heaven by Max Lucado]

Best Blogger Tips

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Jesus Begulai Enggau Orang ti Bedosa (Anang Kelalu Sibok Enggau Pengawa di Gereja)

Lewi tauka Matthew, ngereja pengawa ya nyadi pengumpol chukai.
Ia urang Yahudi tang ia nyadi ulun orang Rom
Benong [Jesus] bejalai dia Iya meda orang pengumpol chukai, nama iya Lewi anak Alpius, dudok ba opis iya. Ko Jesus bejako enggau iya, ‘Titih ka aku.’ Lewi angkat, lalu nitih ka Iya. Dudi ari nya Jesus makai ba rumah Lewi. Lalu mayoh orang pengumpol chukai enggau orang ti bedosa nitih ka Jesus, lalu sekeda sida dudok makai begulai enggau Iya enggau bala murid Iya. Sekeda pengajar Adat, ti endang orang Parisi, meda Jesus begulai makai enggau sida ti bedosa enggau orang pengumpol chukai; nya alai sida nanya murid Iya, ‘Nama kebuah Iya makai begulai enggau orang ti baka nya?’ Jesus ninga sida lalu nyaut, ‘Orang ti pengerai enda beguna ka lutor, tang orang ti sakit aja. Aku datai ukai deka ngiga orang ti lurus, tang sida ti bedosa’
(Mark 1:14-17, Berita Manah Ka Rebak Diatu).

Sekeda Parisi mantah Tuhan Jesus laban Iya makai begulai enggau orang pengumpol chukai enggau orang bedosa. Mayoh orang Kristian baka orang Parisi; ka begulai enggau pangan sida aja, kaban sida ti manah; nyamai, rami amat begempuru dalam gereja, dalam Prayer-Meeting tauka randau ruai.

Tang Tuhan Jesus ka amat begulai enggau orang tesat, orang lain pendiau, orang ti kena indik orang bukai, orang ti dikumbai nadai guna. Ukai laban pengingin tuboh Iya ka baka nya, tang laban Iya enggai meda sida dibuai. “Aku datai ukai deka ngiga orang ti lurus, tang sida ti bedosa.”

Lalu orang bansa nya tebuka ati ka agi nyambut jako Tuhan Jesus. Ko Jesus ba Injil Luke: “Roh Tuhan di atas aku, laban iya udah milih aku, ngasoh aku nusoi Berita Manah ngagai orang ti seranta. Iya udah ngasoh aku nusoi pasal pengelepas ngagai sida ti kena tangkap, lalu sida ti buta di-asoh meda; sida ti kena perinsa dilepas ka, lalu madah ka taun endor Tuhan deka ngelepas ka anembiak iya” (4:18-19). Lewi, iya nya “Matthew, ti pengumpol chukai” (Matthew 10:3), ia mega siko orang baka nya. Jesus ngelepas ka Lewi? Bakani? Tuhan Jesus begulai makai enggau iya. Jesus nerima iya nyadi kaban Iya.

Kelia beribu-ribu orang ti bekerja ba kompeni-kompeni nyau surut ari adat Kristian di menoa Eropah laban sida Padri gagau amat gawa dalam gereja lalu enda ingat ka sida ke luar ari gereja. Pia mega ditu, enti kitai enda ngiboh ka sida (Uji nuan ngira, berapa kali nuan begulai enggau orang ukai Kristian dalam seminggu? Kala nuan sengaja enda betemu enggau kaban Kristian nuan sekali-sekala laban nuan deka begulai enggau kaban ti enda sama pengarap ngau nuan? Berapa kali nuan enggau gereja besembiang ka Malaysia tang udah nya enda iboh ka orang di sekeliling nuan?). Kitai enda patut ngira PANGKAT diri lebih agi ari orang lain, sekali ka iya kaya tauka miskin, tinggi tauka baroh, kuli tauka tuan. Samoa orang Kristian diberi Tuhan Jesus pangkat sama sebaka enggau orang Kristian ti bukai, iya nya – Anak Raja, anak-anak Allah Taala.

Ukai kitai patut muji Tuhan dalam Prayer-Meeting tauka maya di gereja aja, tang kitai nitih ka chunto Tuhan Jesus ti begulai enggau orang ti mit, ti bedosa, ti lain ari kitai. Semua nya pulai ka pemuji mega.

Tuhan Jesus, Nuan ka amat begulai enggau sida ti dikumbai orang “nadai guna.” Tulong aku Tuhan. Enda ngerari ka diri ari sida, ngumbai sida baroh agi ari aku. O Tuhan, aku ka nitih Nuan lalu begulai enggau sida awak ka Nuan ulih nyuman ka sida, ngau aku ulih besaksi ka pemesai Nuan dalam idup aku. Amen.

Best Blogger Tips

Monday, September 7, 2015

Jesus: the Perfect Priest

When we see Christ, what will we see?

We will see the perfect priest, “clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band” (Revelation 1:13). The first readers of this message knew the significance of the robe and band. Jesus is wearing the clothing of a priest. A priest presents people to God and God to people.

You have known other priests. There have been others in your life, whether clergy or not, who sought to bring you to God. But they, too, needed a priest. Some needed a priest more than you did. They, like you, were sinful. Not so with Jesus. “For such a High Priest was fitting for us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and has become higher than the heavens” (Hebrews 7:26).

Jesus is the perfect priest.

He is also pure and purifying: “His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire” (Revelation 1:14).

What would a person look like if he had never sinned? If no worry wrinkled his brow and no anger shadowed his eyes? If no bitterness snarled his lips and no selfishness bowed his smile? If a person had never sinned, how would he appeared? We’ll know when we see Jesus. What John [the apostle] saw that Sunday on Patmos [place where John wrote the Revelation] was absolutely spotless. He was reminded of the virgin wool of sheep and the untouched snow of winter.

And John was also reminded of fire. Others saw the burning bush, the burning altar, the fiery furnace, or the fiery chariots, but John saw the fiery eyes. And in those eyes he saw a purging blaze which will burn the bacteria of sin and purify the soul.
[From When Christ Comes by Max Lucado, bracket mine]


Best Blogger Tips

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Jesus: A Personal Shepherd Provides His Presence and Rest

Years after David wrote (Psalm 23), another Bethlehem Shepherd would say: “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:2-3).

Note the promises of Jesus. “I will come again and receive you to Myself.” He pledges to take us home. He does not delegate this task. He may send missionaries to teach you, angels to protect you, teachers to guide you, singers to inspire you, and physicians to heal you, but He sends no one to take you. He reserves this job for Himself. “I will come back and take you home.” He is your personal Shepherd. And He is personally responsible to lead you home. And because He is present when any of His sheep dies, you can say what David said, “I will fear no evil” (Psalm 23:4).

…And when God calls us into the deep valley of death, He will be with us. Dare we think that He would abandon us in the moment of death? Would a father force his child to swim the deep alone? Would the shepherd require his sheep to journey to the highlands alone? Of course not. Would God require His child to journey to eternity alone? Absolutely not! He is with you!

What God said to Moses, He says to you: “My Presence will go with you” (Exodus 22:14)
[From Travelling Light by Max Lucado]


Best Blogger Tips

Jesus: the One Who Gave Himself for Us

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16, NKJV).

A twenty-five-word parade of hope: beginning with God, ending with life, and urging us to do the same. Brief enough to write on a napkin or memorize in a moment, yet solid enough to weather two thousand years of storms and questions. If you know nothing of the Bible, start here. If you know everything in the Bible, return here. We all need the reminder. The heart of the human problem is the heart of the human. And God’s treatment is prescribed in John 3:16.

He loves. He gave. We believe. We live.

The words are to Scripture what the Mississippi River to America – an entryway into the heartland. Believe or dismiss them, embrace of reject them, any serious consideration of Christ must include them. Would a British historian dismiss the Magna Carta? Egyptologists overlook the Rosetta stone? Could you ponder the words of Christ and never immerse yourself into John 3:16?

The verse is an alphabet of grace, a table of contents to the Christian hope, each word a safe-deposit box of jewels. Read it again, slowly and aloud, and note the word that snatches your attention. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

God so loved the world…” We’d expect an anger-fuelled God. One who punishes the world, recycles the world, forsakes the world… but loves the world?

The world? This world? Heartbreakers, hope-snatchers, and dream-dousers prowl this orb. Dictators rage. Abusers inflict. Reverends think they deserve the title. But God loves. And He loves the world so much He gave His:
Declarations? Rules? Dicta? Edicts?

No. the heart-stilling, mind-bending, deal-making-or-breaking claim of John 3:16 is this: God gave His Son… His only Son. No abstract ideas but a flesh-wrapped divinity. Scripture equates Jesus with God. God, then, gave Himself. Why? So that “whoever believes in His should not perish.”
[From 3:16 by Max Lucado]

Best Blogger Tips

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Jesus: Restorer of Hope

Portrait of a Good Shepherd
Your Shepherd knows that you were not made for this place. He knows you are not equipped for this place. So he has come to guide you out. He has come to restore your soul. He is the perfect one to do so.

He has the right vision… He also has the right direction… But most of all, he is the right person, for he is our God. Who knows the jungle better than the One who made it? And who knows the pitfalls of the path better than the One who has walked it? ...So rather than give us an answer, Jesus gives us a far greater gift. He gives us himself.

Does he remove the jungle? No, the vegetation is still thick.
Does he purge the predators? No, the danger still lurks.

Jesus doesn’t give us hope by changing the jungle; he restores our hope by giving us himself. And he promised to stay until the very end. “I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). We need that reminder. We all need that reminder. For all of us need hope.

And though you don’t need your hope restored today, you may tomorrow. And you need to know to whom to turn. Or perhaps you do need hope today. You know you were not made for this place. You know you are not equipped. You want someone to lead you out.

If so, call out for your Shepherd. He knows your voice. And he’s just waiting for your request.
[From Travelling Light by Max Lucado]


Best Blogger Tips

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Jesus: Grace before the Cross

Abram (or Abraham) was far from perfect. There were times when he trusted the Egyptians before he trusted God. He even lied, telling Pharaoh that his wife, Sarai (or Sarah), was his sister. A pagan worshiper and a cheater. But Abram made one decision that changed his eternal life: he “believe God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness” (Romans 4:3).

Here is a man justified by faith before his circumcision, before the law, before Moses and the Ten Commandments. Here is a man justified by faith before the cross! The sin-covering blood of Calvary extends as far into the past as it does into the future.

Abraham is not the only Old Testament hero to cast himself upon God’s grace… We must not see grace as a provision made after the law had failed. Grace was offered before the law was revealed. Indeed, grace was offered before man was created!You were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you” (1 Peter 1:18-20, NKJV).


From In the Grip of Grace by Max Lucado 
Best Blogger Tips

They Click it A lot. [Top 7 last 7 Days]