00:0000:00

wow-word.jpg

 

Giving

 

A story - King's Cross to Caledonian Road. And what happened when...

Time, possessions and money

Giving is seemingly one of the three forbidden subjects for Christians to discuss in the 21st century! The other two being sex and power. Jesus talked about all three often!

Every person has in differing quantities: time, talent, possessions and money. In relationship to giving, the Church is to be a community where the strongest members support the weakest members. This applies not only to the local church, but also at a national and international level as well.

Too often, even as Christian Disciples we are found turning a blind eye to the suffering of others where the bare necessities of life are in sparse existence. Too often we gather possessions and people, instead of giving up our time and money generously to help the poor and needy of both our world and local communities. Too often we keep our time and talents selfishly to ourselves instead of giving them to others in need.

Spiritual Growth Indicator

Perhaps the greatest indicator of spiritual growth in the Christian Disciple concerns their giving – particularly financial giving. Paul writing to the Corinthians commands that giving is to be done whole-heartedly and cheerfully (2 Corinthians 9:7). WOW! For the Christian Disciple, it is not so much how much is given, but how much is left after giving. God looks beyond the amount that is given to the motive and attitude behind the giving. All of our money, time, talents and possessions belong to God anyway, so giving is to be in response to this. Giving is to be done out of love for God. Paul offers in 1 Corinthians 16:2 a three-point system for giving financially: regularly, methodically and proportionately.

Failure to give back to God's work what He has given the Christian Disciple in the first place, robs God (Malachi 3:8). The reason it robs is because the giving cannot be used to support those who are working for God. As a result of giving, the Christian Disciple will be blessed (Malachi 3:10) and have their needs satisfied (Philippians 4:19).

Old Testament
In the Old Testament, Widows were important to God, because justice is important to God as He is a God of perfect justice and consummate mercy. In the Old Testament, under the Law of Moses, God commanded provision for those who were widows, oppressed or uncared for.

The 12 Apostles would have known about God caring for the widows and through Jesus’ teaching about justice for the poor and the oppressed. We know this because if you read the Book of Acts, people were selling and sharing possessions and ensuring that all people within the Christian community were being looked after and cared for. This included making sure that everyone got fed, particularly those who had no family to care for them. And it was not just for those within the church – but from the wider community!

New Testament
The New Testament church made sure that financial giving was done and that the poor, the oppressed, the lonely and the widows were taken care of. People working fulltime for the Lord, were given recompense by others for their efforts. People gave. Paul in Romans 12:6-8 places giving as a spiritual gift! I wonder how many people have asked specifically for that particular gift. Perhaps it’s the least asked for gift; after all it isn’t one of the supposedly spectacular ones!

You and I
How are you doing? How is your giving of your time, your talents, your possessions and your money on a local, national and international level? The get out clause for a lot of Christians is that it would not be good stewardship to give to that person or that cause. Or they say the passages in the book of Acts are only descriptive of that particular time and have no relevance for us today.
Each of us has in varying quantities: time, talents, possessions and money. How is your giving of those to others doing? God gave everything so that you and I may have life and life in abundance. So by giving generously of your time, your talents, your possessions and your finances, you are reflecting that. Just as God gave and gives generously, and gave His Son as a ransom for sin. If you have run out of ideas about how to give what you have, ask God to show you and give you some creative ideas! Go live! Go give!

How’s that for a WOW word?

Click or Tap here to listen to or save this as an audio mp3 file

~

You can now purchase our Partakers books! Please do click or tap here to visit our Amazon site!

Click or tap on the appropriate link below to subscribe, share or download our iPhone App!
Subscribe in podnovaI heart FeedBurneritunes_logo.giffacebook.giftwitter.gifAdd to Google Reader or Homepage
Add to Google Reader or Homepage

POD - Psalm 104

00:0000:00

pod.jpg

Psalm 104

 

 

1 Let all that I am praise the Lord.

O Lord my God, how great you are!

You are robed with honor and majesty.

2 You are dressed in a robe of light.

You stretch out the starry curtain of the heavens;

3 you lay out the rafters of your home in the rain clouds.

You make the clouds your chariot;

you ride upon the wings of the wind.

4 The winds are your messengers;

flames of fire are your servants.

5 You placed the world on its foundation

so it would never be moved.


6 You clothed the earth with floods of water,

water that covered even the mountains.

7 At your command, the water fled;

at the sound of your thunder, it hurried away.

8 Mountains rose and valleys sank to the levels you decreed.

9 Then you set a firm boundary for the seas,

so they would never again cover the earth.

10 You make springs pour water into the ravines,

so streams gush down from the mountains.


11 They provide water for all the animals,

and the wild donkeys quench their thirst.

12 The birds nest beside the streams

and sing among the branches of the trees.

13 You send rain on the mountains from your heavenly home,

and you fill the earth with the fruit of your labor.

14 You cause grass to grow for the livestock and plants for people to use.

You allow them to produce food from the earth-

15 wine to make them glad,

olive oil to soothe their skin,

and bread to give them strength.


16 The trees of the Lord are well cared for -

the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.

17 There the birds make their nests,

and the storks make their homes in the cypresses.

18 High in the mountains live the wild goats,

and the rocks form a refuge for the hyraxes.

19 You made the moon to mark the seasons,

and the sun knows when to set.

20 You send the darkness, and it becomes night,

when all the forest animals prowl about.


21 Then the young lions roar for their prey,

stalking the food provided by God.

22 At dawn they slink back into their dens to rest.

23 Then people go off to their work,

where they labor until evening.

24 O Lord, what a variety of things you have made!

In wisdom you have made them all. The earth is full of your creatures.

25 Here is the ocean, vast and wide,

teeming with life of every kind,

both large and small.


26 See the ships sailing along, and Leviathan,

which you made to play in the sea.

27 They all depend on you to give them food as they need it.

28 When you supply it, they gather it.

You open your hand to feed them,

and they are richly satisfied.

29 But if you turn away from them, they panic.

When you take away their breath,

they die and turn again to dust.

30 When you give them your breath,

life is created,

and you renew the face of the earth.


31 May the glory of the Lord continue forever!

The Lord takes pleasure in all he has made!

32 The earth trembles at his glance;

the mountains smoke at his touch.

33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live.

I will praise my God to my last breath!

34 May all my thoughts be pleasing to him,

for I rejoice in the Lord.

35 Let all sinners vanish from the face of the earth;

let the wicked disappear forever.

Let all that I am praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord!

 

Right mouse click or tap here to save/download this Psalm as a MP3 file

You can now purchase our Partakers books! Please do click or tap here to visit our Amazon site!

Click or tap on the appropriate link below to subscribe, share or download our iPhone App!
Subscribe in podnovaI heart FeedBurneritunes_logo.giffacebook.giftwitter.gifAdd to Google Reader or Homepage
Add to Google Reader or Homepage

00:0000:00

think_spot_2017.jpg

Think Spot 17 July 2017

 

Each of us can make a difference in this world. Are you aware of that? Let's see what we can do together!

One of the most well-known bible verses is when Jesus says “Love your neighbour as yourself.” But did you know he is actually quoting from Leviticus 19:18b "love your neighbour as yourself. I am the Lord." What does that mean for us today?


As Christians we are to live right lives - to be holy. That is a fundamental about being a Christian. It means being practical and loving others - not just in words but in action. Not just saying I love you but showing that you do. It means sometimes doing things we don't want to do. Or not doing things we want to do. It means putting others first and ourselves last. It means not showing favouritism – to the rich or the poor, to the beautiful and the not so beautiful.


Loving others as yourself, does not mean loving yourself less. It means loving others more. It means holding the interests of others higher than your own. It means honouring others above yourself.


How are you doing at loving others - all others? Are you loving others generously & selflessly? Or are you saying you love them, but only on your own terms or only in words and not in action. Loving them selfishly by putting your own needs first and others after yourself.


Here is a challenge for you. Go into this new week determined to love others – all others – without favouritism. Each of us has ways in which we feel the love of others. We all have our own needs & wants. Ask somebody else today that what it is that you could do for them that would make them feel that they are loved and valued. You may well be surprised that it is something very simple and you would never have found out what it was unless you had asked.


As we go into this new year of 2017, let's be committed to showing practical love to all we meet - one person at a time. Imagine the difference that could make to the world! WOW!

Tap or click here to save/download this audio Podcast as a MP3 file

 

You can now purchase our books!

Please do click here to visit our Amazon site!

Click on the appropriate link below to subscribe, share or download our iPhone App!
Subscribe in podnovaI heart FeedBurneritunes_logo.giffacebook.giftwitter.gifAdd to Google Reader or Homepage
Add to Google Reader or Homepage

00:0000:00

ETB_logo.jpg

Exploring The Bible

23. New Testament

Acts - A.D. 62

 

G'day and welcome to our series, "Exploring the Bible" This is also the title of our latest book available on Amazon by clicking here or visiting PulpTheology.com

Key Verses:

  • Acts 2:32-33
  • Acts 10:34-36

 

Luke wrote The Book of Acts so it is volume 2 of his history of the life of Jesus and the early church. He records Jesus’ return to be with the Father and the coming of the Holy Spirit to guide the church and believers.

It is the record of the transition from when a nation was the people of God, to the age of the new people of God to whom all were, and are, welcome, the Church of Jesus’ followers. Acts includes the beginning, scattering, adjusting, expansion, and edification of the church. Acts presents the development of the one body of Christ consisting of both believing Jews and Gentiles.

Click or Tap here to listen to or save this as an audio mp3 file

~

You can now purchase our Partakers books! Please do click or tap here to visit our Amazon site!

Click or tap on the appropriate link below to subscribe, share or download our iPhone App!
Subscribe in podnovaI heart FeedBurneritunes_logo.giffacebook.giftwitter.gifAdd to Google Reader or Homepage
Add to Google Reader or Homepage

00:0000:00
JohnsGems-1John.jpg

Gems in the Letter of 1 John

Part 105 - 1 John 2:12-14
Why John Wrote...



These are rather strange verses both in the format they are in and their content. John says ‘I am writing to you’ 3 times to children, fathers and young men; then he goes on to say ‘I write’ or ‘I wrote’ 3 times to the same 3 groups of people. (We will consider the people he does not write to next time!) To pick 2 examples: he says to the third group in each case: ‘I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one’ and ‘I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.’ Fine, but it is hard to see why he should say what he did to each of those groups and not one of the others. The young men are physically strong but are they spiritually strong? And the same sort of questions can be raised against each of the other statements.


Two things follow from that observation. First we should not be at all concerned about what was said to each specific group but take it that all the statements are addressed to all the groups. Secondly, and directly following from that comment is the observation that John considered all the church to be involved in what he was saying and requiring. This is not what most modern churches do. We split things up. Children go to Sunday School. Young people go to their separate meetings, possibly not even attending the main fellowship meetings very often. We have Ladies Fellowships etc. Of course we have to live as a fellowship in our culture and not in theirs and the two cultures will be radically different wherever you may be in the world listening to or reading this. A significant part of leading a church or any sort of fellowship has to be working out, with the guidance of the Spirit, what is best and most effective in a particular situation. Not all answers will be the same. There is plenty of room in the world for us all, reflecting as we do many different attitudes to worship and service. There should be straightforward main line churches emphasising Biblical teaching as well as charismatic churches leaning much more heavily on experience in every place. Things go wrong when churches split apart for social and inter personal reasons rather than any genuine desire to cater for different people and different personalities.

The clear teaching of this passage is that all sorts and branches of the followers of Jesus are to have a common source of authority. It is variously described in these few verses as ‘him who is from the beginning’, ‘the Father’ and ‘the word of God’. No one of the parts of John’s threefold division is given any priority in these authority statements. All, from the infant part of the Sunday School to the senior elders meetings has any other authority basis.

What about the place where you worship? Has due concern been given to where the source of authority comes from? Or is it the case in practice, if not in principle, that the real source of authority comes from one charismatic (in the non-religious meaning of that word) personality? That is all too often the way it is and it is ultimately disastrous for the long-term continuing life of the fellowship.
Have you given proper thought to what happens in your place? Have you taken any steps to ensure that the place has a proper basis?

Click or Tap here to listen to or save this as an audio mp3 file

~

You can now purchase our Partakers books including Roger's latest - The Puzzle of Living - A fresh look at the story of Job!

Please do click or tap here to visit our Amazon site!

Click or tap on the appropriate link below to subscribe, share or download our iPhone App!
Subscribe in podnovaI heart FeedBurneritunes_logo.giffacebook.giftwitter.gifAdd to Google Reader or Homepage
Add to Google Reader or Homepage

00:0000:00

PFP2016.jpg 

 

Partakers Friday Prayers

14 July 2017

for the Persecuted Church Worldwide

 

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!

 

Prayers for the Persecuted Church

Sovereign God, we worship you and acknowledge that you know all of those who suffer in your name because they follow you. We remember those who are imprisoned for their faith and ask that they would join with the Apostle Paul to see that even though they remain captive, their chains have furthered the gospel, not frustrated it. May they inspire and embolden their fellow believers to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly. Amen

God of all comfort, for those who are tortured both in body and mind, give them the grace to endure and to see their suffering as part of following in Christ’s footsteps. Merciful God, for those asked to pay the ultimate price; who are martyred because of their love for you, may they truly know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death. Amen

Father God, for those who are widowed and orphaned may they know the comfort that comes from your promised presence even when they walk through the valley. May they be strengthened by your Spirit, enabling them to rejoice with the psalmist as they proclaim that the LORD will not abandon them in death. Amen

Heavenly Father, we ask that you would make us ever mindful of our brothers and sisters around the world who need us to stand with them as they suffer in your name. Teach us what it means to overcome by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of our testimony; we pray that we would not love our lives so much as to shrink from death.

We ask these things O Father, through the name of Your Son, Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within us.
Amen

Click or Tap here to listen to or save this as an audio mp3 file

~

You can now purchase our Partakers books! Please do click or tap here to visit our Amazon site!

Click or tap on the appropriate link below to subscribe, share or download our iPhone App!
Subscribe in podnovaI heart FeedBurneritunes_logo.giffacebook.giftwitter.gifAdd to Google Reader or Homepage
Add to Google Reader or Homepage

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

google-site-verification: google3e8cc4742c5fd8a2.html