google-site-verification: google3e8cc4742c5fd8a2.html 2018 June

Archive for June 2018

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Gems in the book of Revelation
(Authored by Roger Kirby)

Part 146 - Revelation 14:1-5
The army of God

The picture of the Lamb standing on Mount Zion takes us straight to Psalm 2:6-11 where we read:


“I have installed my king on Zion, my holy mountain.”
7 I will proclaim the LORD’s decree:
He said to me, “You are my son; today I have become your father.
8 Ask me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession.
9 You will break them with a rod of iron; you will dash them to pieces like pottery.”
10 Therefore, you kings, be wise; be warned, you rulers of the earth.
11 Serve the LORD with fear and celebrate his rule with trembling.

What John has written here is clearly a pictorial representation of how that prophecy will be fulfilled. Here we have 144,000 marshalled as the army of the Lamb. Not of course an army, which is to go out with Kalashnikovs etc. but one, that is to fight with love and mercy for the glory of the Lord. As before this number is carefully judged so that when it was first written it might not be so big a number that everyone who heard it might presume that they would be included and not so small that they might worry that there was no room for them. Now it has to be several billion to have the same meaning for all the Christians alive today. They are a mighty army heralded with great natural sounds of water and thunder and great human sounds of harps and singing. In the early days when a Jewish army had to go to war they were instructed to abstain from sexual relations so that they might be symbolically as pure as possible. That is what is referred to here in the statement that the Lord’s army were to be virgins. It should not be taken literally. They are to be followers - the word so often used in the Gospels to refer to those who believed in Jesus as the Messiah.


Once again this chapter will be read between by those Christians in countries where faith is a nice comfortable way to live your life and in a very different way by those who live where to believe in Jesus puts them into an unwanted category and possibly constant danger.

Even in the comfortable countries there are points to note here. 14:4b-5 talk about following the Lamb wherever he goes - not just on Sunday mornings! And goes on to remind the followers that they have been purchased - at a terrible price; that they are but part of a mighty army - now found throughout the world in all except its most hidden corners; and that purity expressed as absolute honesty in every word is the mark of the true believer.

For the uncomfortable countries there is the promise of a future judgement when all the greatest citadels of evil will be destroyed and there will be eventually a terrible display of the wrath of God against all the wickedness and failure to worship the true and only God.

Perhaps the most important thing of all to note in this chapter is that after the great description of the Lord’s army we are not told that it was ever used. All the action is carried out by spirit beings. We are not to go to war on behalf of the Lamb.

However those days will call for patient endurance on the part of the people of God who are to keep his commands and remain faithful to Jesus.

Dear Lord, please, may we so live that you count us amongst those, we pray.

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Partakers Friday Prayers!

We pray together and when Christians pray together, from different nations, different churches and different denominations - that reveals Church unity! Come! Let us pray together!

Lord, because you have made me,
I owe you the whole of my love;
because you have redeemed me, I owe you the whole of myself;
because you have promised so much, I owe you my whole being.
Moreover, I owe you as much more love than myself as you are greater than I,
for whom you gave yourself and to whom you promised yourself.

I pray you, Lord,
make me taste by love what I taste by knowledge;
let me know by love what I know by understanding.
I owe you more than my whole self,
but I have no more,
and by myself I cannot render the whole of it to you.
Draw me to you, Lord, in the fullness of your love.
I am wholly yours by creation;
make me all yours, too, in love.
Amen

(A prayer of Anselm 1033-1109)

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Thursday Story

People meeting Jesus

 

The story of Dietrich Bonhoeffer...

Today look at the story of perhaps one of the greatest Saints of the 20th Century church - Dietrich Bonhoeffer. His books and writings have never been more influential than they are today. His fight to stand for the cause of Christ cost him his life. We do well to honour and remember him as an example to us all. Come and listen to his story of faith...

 

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Alfie brings you a WOW Word

 

WOW Word - Cross of Jesus Christ

 

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Our WOW Word today is Cross! Cross, as in the Cross of Jesus Christ!

John 3:16 - “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life”.
Mark 10:45 – “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

Even a cursory look at the world around you, will tell you that the world is messed up. Is there any hope? Yes there is! That is why God sent Jesus! Jesus is the hope! Jesus came to serve rather than be served. That is why Jesus came to give His life, so humanity may have a hope! God made the world perfect and humanity was in a harmonious relationship with God. Humanity messed it up and broke the relationship bonds with God. When the time was right, God became human, in order to bring humanity back into relationship with Himself.

That man was Jesus Christ and it was His death on a Roman cross about 2000 years ago which was the act of a generous God reaching out to the world that he loves. Without Jesus’ death on the cross would there be no hope for the world! That He died is without doubt, but why did He have to die and what gain do we have as His Disciples?

Alphy the WOWChurch Cat explains the significance of Jesus' death on the cross for the sake of all humanity. Play or download the mp3 audio to discover what Alphy has to say! Bless ya!

 

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POD - Psalm 41

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Psalm 41

For the Chief Musician. A Psalm by David.

1 Blessed is he who considers the poor.
Yahweh will deliver him in the day of evil.
2 Yahweh will preserve him, and keep him alive.
He shall be blessed on the earth,
and he will not surrender him to the will of his enemies.
3 Yahweh will sustain him on his sickbed,
and restore him from his bed of illness.
4 I said, "Yahweh, have mercy on me!
Heal me, for I have sinned against you."

5 My enemies speak evil against me:
"When will he die, and his name perish?"
6 If he comes to see me, he speaks falsehood.
His heart gathers iniquity to itself.
When he goes abroad, he tells it.
7 All who hate me whisper together against me.
They imagine the worst for me.
8 "An evil disease," they say, "has afflicted him.
Now that he lies he shall rise up no more."

9 Yes, my own familiar friend, in whom I trusted,
who ate bread with me,
has lifted up his heel against me.
10 But you, Yahweh, have mercy on me,
and raise me up, that I may repay them.
11 By this I know that you delight in me,
because my enemy doesn't triumph over me.
12 As for me, you uphold me in my integrity,
and set me in your presence forever.
13 Blessed be Yahweh, the God of Israel,
from everlasting and to everlasting!

Amen and amen.

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Think Spot 25 June 2018

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Think Spot 25th June 2018

As part of our living as followers of Jesus, here is something which has the capability of affecting every person on the planet.

Jesus, our Master, said in Matthew 12:36-37 "But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgement for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Jesus took words and thoughts extremely seriously. Jesus’ words encouraged others gently towards paths of right living. He spoke words of love, kindness, rebuke, forgiveness, encouragement and blessing upon and to others. Jesus is to be our guide and Master in the use of thoughts and words.

In Matthew 5:21-22, Jesus equates calling somebody a fool with the physical act of murder. Murder has its beginning in anger developing into uncontrollable rage. Improper attitudes, words and thoughts can lead you and I to sin if we don’t stop their destructive use quickly. May the words we communicate and think about, be like those of Jesus – “full of grace”. How is your WOW factor of Jesus now?

When Jesus Christ called you to follow Him, He called you to follow Him wholeheartedly and be committed to only Him. Jesus calls you and I, to love God and be totally committed to Him.

Here is a brief prayer to help us into the new week.

Father, help us this week to be totally committed to you in all aspects of our lives. May those we live with, work with and interact with, know we are your child by the words we speak. We ask this, through the mighty name of your Son, Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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