I do not know if you noticed that our Christian life is not automatic. It seems every day we have to commit our lives to Jesus Christ. Other physical things we do can be automatic but our Christian life is not. However when we need something we automatically pray it seems,but how about the days when we seem not to need anything ?.
Jesus Christ says we are not to worry, be in peace, love our brethren even love our enemies. In life it is not that smooth but we learn to be in faith, to believe.
We look at the world and the world appeared to be happy but then we see what the world has done to people. Without Jesus the world's happiness will not last.
I read an article that says Christianity is losing in America. Why is that ? Could this be true ?
But as for me I will stay with Jesus. Yes for us who call ourselves to be Christians, let us have Jesus at the beginning of the day, at the middle and at the end of the day. This is easier said than done but we have to keep at it. As I heard before "keep on keeping on".
Is there anything man can not build ? man built skyscrapers, bridges, tunnels,oil and gas drilling, refineries, airports,car manufacturing, all kinds of travelling underwater, above water, on land , below surface, above the atmosphere. Man progressed in industries,medicine, agriculture, commerce, engineering and technology, computer and the internet, space technology, robotics, communications,psychology,militarily, human management, banking.Man also established schools, colleges and universities. Man used all kinds of governments.Man also involved himself in all kinds of recreation and sports.
With all these advances, man should be optimistic, is it not?
I will let you do the math or the evaluation of the world.
As for me just as Jesus Christ came to earth about two thousand years ago, I am expecting Jesus Christ to return just as He promised.
The Bible says in John 3:16 God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believe in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.
One of these days, the skies will break open and Jesus Christ will appear,are you waiting for Him ? I do.
What is man's ultimate goal ?There are seven billion people in planet earth living now plus perhaps billions more who has died. What do men and women living and dead wished they were more than anything in the world.
Let us look at some , to be the richest, to be the most popular, to be the greatest hero, to be the top or leader of the greatest country, or countries of the world, to be the greatest athlete.
Yours may be simpler, just to have the car of your dream, the most beautiful house, to earn or have lots of money. To have many friends.
According to the Bible , King Solomon the son of King David, was given by God, wisdom and riches.
In Ecclesiastes 12:13,14 here is what King Solomon wrote;
Here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.
This was written in the Old Testament before Jesus Christ came on this earth in human form. With Jesus came grace and truth. If you have questions on the role of God's commandments and grace , perhaps you can ask your priest, pastor or Christian friends.
I was contemplating on something the other day when a thought came to me about the similarity of the Four stroke engine and the Christian life. What is the four stroke engine ? It is the basic principle in our engines for cars, trucks, airplanes etc. Let us see what are the four strokes. First there is the intake of fuel and air in the engine cylinder, then comes the compression and ignition. These are followed by the power stroke which is caused by the explosion in the cylinderof the mixture of the air and fuel. Then followed by the exhaust of the products of combustion. Then the stroke or the cycle goes back to intake, compression/ ignition, expansion or power then exhaust.
Now let us go to the Christian life. A Christian spends time in prayer and reading the Word (the Bible) like the intake stroke. Then followed by compression or ignition by the Holy Spirit. Then this power is turned to ministry or mission and then to exhaust or rest for the Christian worker. Then the Christian goes back to prayer and reading and then be empowered by the Holy Spirit for the work assigned by God. Then comes some rest or what is called as Sabbath.
Even nature have cycles, like sun rise, sun set. Yes we are serving a God of order. Christian life is exciting once you take it by faith and experience it.
Lamentations according to the dictionary came from the word lament which means a crying out in grief : wailing. So lamentations means several crying out in grief, wailings. Did I not just write about joy, marking happy faces on the Bible ? Yes I did but if one sees the theme in the Bible, one will see repentance like lamentations and followed by joy as one comes to live for Jesus.By the way joy comes when we continually live for Jesus and not giving up.We may fall several times but God helps us to get up.
If one goes through the book of Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclessiates and beginning of Isaiah, one will see Psalms mostly about praises to God, with some cries for help. Proverbs about the wisdom of living as experienced by Solomon. And Ecclessiastes where Solomon appeared unhappy about trying to work hard and enjoying life apart from God.
In Isaiah, we see the expression of justice and wrath of God on disobedient Israel in the early chapters.But of course later chapters tell about the coming Messiah (Jesus) who is our Blessed hope , our source of joy.
From these books we see tribulations of man when man forgets God and we see the mercy and forgiveness and restoration of man when man returns or turns to God.
So the point of this blog is for us to lament when we Christians are getting too relaxed, or attracted to the world but then in due time God will restore and give us true joy as we remember why we are here on this earth.
Why are we here ? I see and hear this several times before in Christian leaders, To know Christ and to make Him known.
Have you ever wondered who or what God is like in person ? The answer is Jesus the Christ, or commonly known as Jesus Christ. Where can we find the story of Jesus ? The Bible gives the account of Jesus story as written by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
Several movies are made on the story of Jesus,Several books are written on Jesus.Jesus was and is the basis of many Christian churches. Several TV miniseries were also made on Jesus.
By the way is Jesus real to you ? For me He is real. By faith and as I see it in the Scriptures or Holy Bible, He is the God who came to earth in human form. He came to earth to reveal God the Father. Jesus is God the Son. When Jesus returned to heaven,He sent the Holy Spirit to dwell in the believers.
Again who is Jesus to you ? If you do not know Him , I hope you'll take the time to know.
After some thought and soul searching I decided to suggest putting happy face stickers on Bible verses . And here's why ?
The Bible is good news. Good news came from the word gospel. Our God is a loving God, full of mercy and compassion. I believe He is smiling when He blesses us. The word "blessed", bless, is also happy, glad, joy, please,cheer. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self control which could also be represented by a happy face.
Use of happy face stickers could encourage reading the Bible in parent children relationship, Sunday schools in churches, between husband and wife.
Many Bibles maybe collecting dust on shelves and using stickers is one reason to open those Bibles again.
Stickers with different colors maybe used to differentiate between themes like salvation, repentance, sanctification etc.
It can also show the united and different roles of Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
Of course there are also sad stories in the Bible like sin, rebellion, lies of people,reasons for judgments etc. and you may ask , how can we use the happy stickers ? my answer is turn the sticker upside down,which makes the smile into a frown.
Happy face is a universal language and in the resurrection where there will be no more crying , sorrows and pain, we will all have a genuine happy face and happy or merry heart.
If one is lonely or depressed ,seeing those happy face and comforting verses will do something to our hearts.
And lastly , our Lord Jesus says" in the world you shall have tribulation but be of good cheer I have overcome the world".John 16:33.
This is a hard phrase but that is what I Peter 4:17 says , For the time has come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God ?
According to my reference this was written AD 60. So about 1955 years ago.This looks like a prophecy. When will this happen ? I do not know.
But our best move is to examine ourselves and pray that God continue to cleanse us.
Would you believe me if I say no man knew entirely what the Holy Bible teach ? I have not found one and I am 62 years old, I have been studying the Bible myself and reading books by various authors, theologians, evangelists. Listening to sermons for years, I can only say that God is God, and He is unfathomable.
So what do we need to study the Holy Bible ? answer: we need the Holy Spirit. How do we know the Holy Spirit is in us ? The Holy Spirit is also beyond our human understanding but He reveals the truth to us as He wills.
The Bible tells that God reveals Himself and the truth to humble and seeking people. So when we humble ourselves God will reveal more to us.
As I study the Bible and as I try to remember the verses that inspires me, I came across a way of helping me recall and locate the verses.
There is or are some Bibles that uses colors that highlight themes . If you can afford it you may purchase one if youlike. But if you have old Bibles already which you have not opened in a long time, I have a suggestion to offer you. If you can find beautiful small stickers with different colors then you could try what I did.
when the verse refers to God the Father use purple, for the Son maybe use red or pink, for the Holy Spirit use green.For the verse that we should be doing use orange. You may select the color you like.Place the small sticker next to the verse and see for yourself. Try it on a few verses and see if you like it