Monday, 12 June 2017

He perishes that we may not...

The Son of God perishes that we may not perish.

He rises that we may rise.

That is how much he loves us.

He calls us to lay down our burdens at his cross.

To rise up and follow him into the beautiful horizon of his new creation.

Behold he makes all things new.

- DTH 

Friday, 9 June 2017

Death where is thy sting?

"Precious to the Lord are the death of His saints."

God has set eternity in the hearts of men. Why would you want there to be nothing at the end of life?

Death is not a secret but a mystery. Solomon asked so long ago if animals will be in heaven. And how do people get there.

NO ONE KNOWS WHEN THEY WILL DIE. We should then live everyday to God's glory. So make haste to be right with God.

DEATH IS THE ULTIMATE LEVELER. Mourning makes people think about mortality. It helps reveal what is important in life more than a party ever could. The king and the pawn go back in the same box. Rich or poor - are we ready to meet God? Do we have faith in Him and His son whose very name is love? Without Him, without love what else matters? We need to love others and love God. The importance of this can become clear in mourning. Are you ready?

Except that done in love for the glory of Jesus. Though these things won't save us, it is His merit alone that can do that, these things give an abundant entry into eternity. Solomon in the end hated what he couldn't take with him. He was the richest man on earth leading a vast empire, surrounded by wives and servants. Jesus asks what good would it do to gain the whole world and lose ones own soul? Therefore store up treasures in heaven.

It is uncomfortable to think on, but needed. Will we be with Christ on that day or lost in sin? Even if you are a follower of Jesus consider that if we do the things Jesus told us in secret and it comes out it will be nice, but the bad stuff we shouldn't do that we did anyway coming out would be unpleasant. Therefore walk in the light as He is in the light. Shine like the stars in the heavens. Love Him who first loved us.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16 KJV

(Refs: Eccl 2:18, Eccl 12:13, Ps 115, Eccl. 3:11, Eccl 3:21, Eccl 8:7,8, Eccl 7:2).

- DTH  (based on a sermon I heard once).

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

The Light

Holy feasts, sacraments, anointing oil, clouds, temples, the ark and trumpets are a few symbols for the church. Jesus himself is seen as the star, the fountain of Israel, the Passover Lamb, the door to salvation, the healing balm, the rose of Sharon, the lily of the valley, our rock and foundation. He is the bread of life, the light of the world. That is but a few symbols.

There are many more. The one that speaks to me is:

The Light
He is described in prophetic terms as Israel's living star (Num 24:17). In the New Testament a cloud of light appeared over Him and a voice declared " This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!" (Matt 17:5) He is called light of the world for good reasons (John 9:5) for in Him is no darkness (1 John 1:5). In a world where the darkness of evil thrives it gives such hope that the light still shines in the dark. Such a reality inspires and calls us to be the light also. To not hide our light under a bowl, but rather to be a city set on a hill that cannot be hid. As the hymn says "live in the light, as he is in the light, shine like the stars in the heavens." So let the light shine!

- DTH 

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Revolution of the Heart

The heart of man's problem is the problem of man's heart. Scripture says that the heart of man is wicked and God requires a broken and contrite heart. King David though a man with a bad past, who journeyed to repentance, was called 'a man after God's own heart.' On the road to Emmaus two fellows unwittingly entered fellowship with God himself. When they realised it was Jesus they exclaimed 'Did not our hearts burn within us as we talked with him along the way.' It was these and others of the upper room who went on to turn the world upside down. The early followers of Jesus were the start of a revolution of the heart.

O that we would live with vision that revolution of the heart. In the words of the hymn - Be Thou My Vision: 'Christ of my own heart, whatever befall.
Still be my vision, O ruler of all'.

- DTH 

Exodus & Exile

The Bible reads like a collection of books about people caught up in exodus and exile. It is a book that shows the destruction of imperialism and war. It shows how innocents suffer. The climax of the book is the suffering innocent saviour crucified on a tree. But, God is not done there, it is also a story of resurrection, redemption, and hope. It is the story of people with good news to share by words and action. It is counter-culture and more relevant now than some may realise. In an age of wars and rumours of war, an age of refugees in exile and mass exodus, it speaks of the need for love and compassion. The early followers of Jesus were famous for love and not hate. So while the extremists, the religiously ignorant, the politically cold, the divisive nationalists and the greedy arms dealers fuel the world's problems, and beat the war drums, let us the people of new birth be lights in the darkness and voices in the wilderness. Let us live and sing the song of love, for truly His banner over us is love. It is to that beat we march and in His name, not the gods of hate and war, but the God of love, the Prince of Shalom (peace). Soli Deo Gloria. Amen

- DTH 

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Ares or Christós?

It is a sad reality that so many, even those of the faith, seem to effectively kneel before Ares*. This idolatry of violence and war is in such contrast to worshiping at the feet of the Prince of Peace. Sometimes it feels as if the entire world is marching toward destruction and chaos. Worst of all is that we know the mistakes made in our histories, but we seem to learn nothing from history (other than that we learn nothing). We do it all again and again. Sin after sin.
When posterity comes to judge us will they look upon the arms trade unchecked, the governments unhindered in iniquity and the vast lands of earth bursting into flame? Or will they look and see a people who voiced against the arms trade, the war mongers and the hell fire worshippers?
Either way, it is hard to not get depressed. But, take heart peaceful brothers and sisters. Though this dark night of evil brings such bitter sorrow, joy comes in the morning. That morning will come and swords will be of no use, for the learning of war will be no more.
Will it happen before or after the King arrives? God knows, but heed the encouragement given by Adin Ballou:
"The earth, so long a slaughter field, Shall yet an Eden bloom. The tiger to the lamb shall yield, And war descend the tomb."
Choose this day who you will serve!
O Lord, let it be Christós!
* Ares was meant to be a god of the ancient greeks - the god of war.

Monday, 29 May 2017

What is in a name? - God of Wonders

Names in the bible are significant. e.g. David means, beloved by God and man. And so king David was. Jesus asks who do you say I am? A question to his disciples, but also all of us? He says the father's name is to be hallowed (see the Lord's prayer) and that he and the Father are one. So we should  meditate on the holiness of his names. There are hundreds of names for God. They each provide a rich blessing of description.

One such name is: God of Wonders
The hymn says "God of wonders, beyond our galaxy, You are holy." It is worth thinking on any wonders, however seemingly small, that we are blessed with in life. God operates in both the magnificent out of the ordinary (e.g. Acts 2:19) and in the   everyday. This God of resurrection wonder (Eph 1:20) not only raised Christ, but daily raises up those in need. His blessings are new every morning. He not only is a creative life giver at the beginning (Is 44:24), but continues to be now. He promises that all things can be made new (Is 42:9) and all creation is groaning like a woman in birth pains for it. He and His kingdom are coming little by little, wonder, by wonder for he is the God of wonders and is truly wonderful.