Sunday, 22 July 2018

Believing a Different Story


In Mathew 28, we see about two groups who witness the resurrection, the women and the soldiers. Both see the angel, both see the rolling of the stone, both see the empty tomb, and both see the resurrected Jesus.

Both share the story with others. Women are sent to the disciples. The guards go to the leading priests.  
What’s intriguing in this account is the guards who were trying to guard the God had the privilege of seeing Jesus’s ultimate act, the act of resurrection. And they even shared this story with others. I was expected them to join the eleven soon. 

But what’s sad is once they were offered money (v12), a plan to satisfy the governor (V14) to “save” their lives, they were ready to change the story. They were willing to trade what they saw to what they believed. 

I think deep within they believed a different story. They believed the story that if they get some money and please people, they will be safe. Because of that belief, they changed the story of resurrection. Even after seeing the resurrection, their belief about life did not change. Just Sad. In trying to save themselves they lost the real life that Jesus offered. They saw and yet did not believe because they believed in a different story. These guards could have been the first martyrs for Jesus.

Has your story about Jesus changed? Even after seeing and knowing the power of Jesus many many times, are you still living and talking like Jesus is still dead.
Then it’s high time you check your beliefs.

Sunday, 31 December 2017

Unknown Needs and Unknown Miracles

One of my friends asked me recently about this year. 
How was this year for you? What did the Lord do for you? Well, I did not have any concrete answer for these questions.
Then I was reminded about a passage of scripture, John 2, where Jesus attends a wedding and performs his first miracle.
In this wedding, the bride and bridegroom didn’t seem to know that they ran out of wine. In the first place, they seem to be unaware of their need. So they never approached Jesus with their need, because they did not know about it. They must have enjoyed the party and had fun unaware of the embarrassment that was waiting for them.
Many times, I am like them. I am not aware of my needs. I just think everything is fine in my life and go on having fun. 

Then, Jesus performs a miracle and even then they don’t seem to know it. (Only the servants knew what happened.) They were unaware of the Miracle that happened and just continued partying.
They did not know their need and they did not know the miracle.
But Jesus knew their need and Jesus performed the miracle.
In the year 2017, there may be some who can point to miracles in their life. Praise God for the miracles. 

But then, there are some like me who feel, everything was just normal. We were never aware of our needs and we were never aware of the miracles. Remember we survived because Jesus knew our unknown needs and performed for us many unknown miracles which we would know only after we meet God in person.

So let us take some time and thank Jesus. Thank Him for meeting our unknown needs through many unknown miracles.
He is a God who does more than all we ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20).

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Actions!


They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. - Titus 1:16

Do people realize you know God by watching your actions?

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Dance and Jump or Walk

I see a lot of "dancing in the Spirit, jumping in the Spirit, laughing in the Spirit, falling down in the Spirit" in our churches. I am not going to go in detail about them.

But what the Word of God teaches us so clearly is that we need to be people who "Walk in the Spirit". (Galatians 5:16, 25)

We need to walk in the Spirit and teach others to do the same.

Lord, help us to Walk in the Spirit and not according to the desires of the flesh. Amen.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Everyone or Only One!

Jesus warned his disciples against the teachers of the law or the scribes and the pharisees.
Its interesting to note that Jesus never said, "be on your guard against drunkards, or be on your guard against prostitutes." But he said, "be on your guard against the teachers of the law..." Luke 20:46.
Of course Jesus did not agree with the actions of drunkards and prostitutes. But the greatest threat according to Jesus for his disciples are the teachers of the law who live for other people's eyes. They follow all their spiritual disciples just to impress everyone around them. So Jesus warns us against such people.



Even in the sermon the mount, Jesus explains the motives of the pharisees.

They gave so that people would see and praise them..."They do it so that people will praise them.." Matt 6:2
They prayed so that everyone will see them...." ...so that everyone will see them" Matt 6:5
They fasted in such a way that everyone will see them..".....so that everyone will see them" Matt 6:16

They did the right things with the wrong motives. They were concerned about what others would think about them.

This can be so true of our spiritual life. Many a time, all we want is everyone should see us.

In all three instance Jesus says, let the Father's eyes alone see you. Pray, fast and give and let only your Father see you. Pharisees said "everyone", But Jesus says, "Only One". Whose eyes are we working for?  Let us work for the audience of One! Don't get carried away by the likes, comments, and the thumbs ups. We work for God and wait to hear him say, "Well done".

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Cult of Celebrity

I am really tired of watching Christian ministers who have "become" a celebrity. They are all over the place.

One of the distinguished marks of these celebrities is that they are inaccessible. No one can reach them. They can be seen only on the stage. They are busy "Men/Women of God". They behave as if God must be really indebted to have them on his team.
They love prominent places and popularity is a drug for them.

John Calvin died as he lived--opposed to "idolatry" or "celebrity." His body was put in white sheet, plain cedarwood coffin, unmarked common pit.
He took pains to fade as namelessly from this world as he could. He requested burial in an unmarked grave hoping to prevent pilgrims.  
In one of the last commentaries he wrote, he commented on the death and burial of Moses, "It is good that famous men should be buried in unmarked graves."
He wanted His God to be famous!

William Carey, the great missionary to India, who is also called ” The Father of Modern Missions” said, “ remember not Carey, remember Carey’s Lord.”.

John the Baptist said, “HE must increase i must decrease” (John 3;30) John the Baptist’s ministry ended as Jesus took over. The problem now is Many “men of God” don’t allow Jesus to take over!

I guess God must also be tired of the celebrity culture within the church.

May God save the church from the Cult of Celebrity.

Sunday, 20 November 2016

Offerer, Offering, Priest!

Leviticus is a book full of offerings and sacrifices. These sacrifices has three elements.

1.The one who offers
2. Offering
3. Priest

In Jesus, we have all these three.

1.
who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. - Titus 2:14

He is the one who offers himself. No one took his life from him but he offered it for us.

2.
By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
- Hebrews 10:10

He is not only the one who offers but he is our offering. 

3.
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God... Hebrews 4:14, 15

He is also our Great High Priest who represents us .

Time and again when sacrifices were made during the OT, they were affirming the one who would come. Lets praise him and be thankful for the grace of the one who offers, one who is our offering and one who is our great high priest.