Tag Archives: church

My Creed


I Believe

I Believe in one God, the Triune GOD, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

I Believe in GOD the Father, the Almighty who created all things both visible and invisible in six literal days and rested on the seventh day.
I Believe in JESUS CHRIST, the only Begotten Son, who was with God in the beginning and is God, Who was conceived by God the Holy Spirit the third person of Godhead, born of virgin Mary, He was sinless and could not sin and knew no sin but became sin and was crucified, dead and buried according to the Scripture for the sins of the men; He arose again from the dead on the third Day according to the Scriptures and was seen by both men and women for forty days and then ascended into heaven, and now sitting at the right hand of God the FatherAlmighty. He now as our Advocate pleads for all believers.
I Believe in the Holy Spirit the truly God and the third member of  the Godhead., who been given to all believers from the very moment of Salvation and He unites me with Jesus Christ and places me in the body of Christ. He fills me, empowers, guides, reminds, illumines, and teaches me. He convicts and regenerates the unbelievers. He is the guarantee of my inheritance and I am sealed and confirmed by the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption. He now intercedes for me and gives me the gifts according to His own will to serve Christ and to edify the Church.
I Believe in the forgiveness of sins, both the original sin and the actual sins by the blood of Jesus Christ by grace through faith alone.
I Believe in the Holy Universal Church which began on the Day of Pentecost. I believe only those who are truly saved by the grace of Christ Jesus and were elected before the foundation of the world are members of Christ’ Body the Church.
I Believe in the resurrection of the body when Christ will come in the clouds to receive His Church on the day which no man knows, the dead in Christ shall rise and then we who are living will be caught up in the air on the day of Rapture.
I Believe in the Literal Millennial Kingdom of Christ on the earth. He will come with his Holy Saints and the multitude of angels to reign on this earth as Messiah the King for Thousand years after seven years of Tribulations.
I Believe in the Everlasting life and I will live With Triune God, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit in New Heaven and new Earth forever and ever.  Amen

Israel, the people of God


God has a special place for the nation Israel. The Church has not replaced Israel. The Church is the Bride of Christ. This is what Paul wrote about his own kinsmen in chapter 9 of Romans

For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all,blessed forever. Amen.

And then he shares this great good news, that eventually the nation Israel will be restored both physically and spiritually.

The Mystery of Israel’s Salvation: Romans 11:25-29 

 Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.  And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,

“The Deliverer will come from Zion,
    he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;
“and this will be my covenant with them
    when I take away their sins.”

As regards the gospel, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers. 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

Christmas Thoughts: What are your seeking this Christmas?


300 gifts.pngPeople have different expectations during Christmas. Some of you have been waiting for this season so that you can do lots of shopping. Some of you have been waiting to take a vacation and go some place nice and have some fun. Some of you have been waiting to visit your loved ones. Some of you can’t wait to get a special gift from your friend or family. For some, it is just a holiday season which comes and goes every year. Some of you are seeking a new job, new house, new computer, new phone, new books, or new clothes. The malls and shopping centers are now full with people seeking something for themselves and for their loved ones. I heard news about a mother who bought 300 gifts for her children (see the picture above), and when people criticized her, she tried to justify her desire to give those gifts. It is a very sad thing that she will be raising her children who will not appreciate the true meaning of Christmas. She is seeking to gratify herself. People are no longer seeking JESUS the real reason for Christmas Season.

We read the Christmas story of the wise men who came to Jerusalem. They were seeking the King of the Jews. You might have seen written on signboards or plaques, “Wise men still seek Jesus” or “Wise men still seek the King of the Jews”.

What you seek tells a whole lot about you! 

“Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east and are come to worship him.” Mathew 2:1-2

There are few problems with our celebrations which have plagued our society and culture today. Christmas has become a self-seeking, self-gratifying festival. We are told, advised, and encouraged to treat ourselves well because we deserve it. Even Christians are deceived to think the same way. We often justify our indulgences and celebrations because of the traditions of old passed to us by our fathers. Our traditions and celebrations are not much different from the world. Additionally, we are doing our best not to break the materialistic traditions of Christmas, at the same time trying to pass along the traditions of old to the new generation. However, Paul warns us that “People will become of lover of themselves rather  than lovers of God”

“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves……… lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! II Timothy 3:1-5

Let me encourage you to seek JESUS this Christmas.Here are Scripture passages to meditate this Christmas, which in essence will help you Seek rightly:

  • The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.  Psalm 14:2, Psalm 53:2
  • There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. Romans 3:11
  • Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God; I Chronicle 22:19
  • The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. Psalm 10:4
  • But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. Deuteronomy 4:29
  • And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes. Daniel 9:3

JESUS himself came on that Christmas night to seek us. The purpose of Christ’s First Coming is clearly told in the Scriptures,

“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10

These are Twelve things we are exhorted and encourage to Seek

  1. But Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;  Mathew 6:33, Luke 12:31
  2. Seek the LORD and his strength, Seek his face continually   I Chronicle 22:19
  3. Seek for all the commandments of the LORD. I Chronicle 28:8
  4. Seek the law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach. Ezra 7:10
  5. Seek ye out of the book of the LORD, and read: no one of these shall fail” Isaiah 34:16
  6. Seek good and not evil, That you may liveAmos 5:14
  7. Seek righteousness, Zephaniah 2:3
  8. Seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hidden in the day of the LORD’S anger. Zephaniah 2:3
  9. Seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life: Romans 2:7
  10. Seek peace, and pursue it. Psalm 34:14
  11. Seek judgment. Isaiah 1:17
  12. If ye then be risen with Christ, Seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Colossians 3:1

But without faith, it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. Hebrews 11:6

What are you seeking during Christmas as you wait for Christ’s Second coming? Will he find you seeking Him in faith? Luke 18:8

 

 

#Christmas Thought: Are you willing to be ridiculed this Christmas?


not-afraid-christmas-treeDuring Christmas we always go to see the lights in different places of our town. There are some houses where one can see nativity scenes displayed in the yards. I have noticed Joseph standing behind Mary. And they both are beholding the baby (Jesus) placed in the  manger. Often after seeing that, my mind has always wandered to the time past and I had wondered about Joseph, who remained silent and never questioned. He kept doing whatever he was told  to do and remained obedient and even remained righteous and pure in his relationship with Mary till the birth of Jesus. I believe he was still trying to make sense of  all these things in his mind. It was beyond his  comprehension!  But Joseph remained submissive to the will of God. The nativity scene is  a beautiful picture of two ordinary people who were  willing to risk and give up their social standing. I am amazed and inspired by their willingness to be scrutinized and ridiculed by  their friends and their community. 

Remember Joseph was going to put her away secretly after he came to know that Mary is with child. Who told him? How did he come to know.? We do not know, but it seems it became evident after three months of pregnancy. It was obvious that few people came to know about Mary and the news reached to him. I believe when he heard the news, he was both shocked and heartbroken. He must be tormented by hundred of thoughts, things and questions in his mind after hearing this ridiculous bad news. But he remained calm under these circumstances. He must be asking, “Why all this happened to me?’ His dreams of being happily married to Mary shattered.

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly. “ Mathew 1:18-19

Joseph came to know  about the pregnancy of Mary after three months because Mary went to her cousin’s place soon after she received the message from the Angel, Gabriel. Luke 1:56  He was thinking of what could have transpired in the three months while she was at her cousin’s place. He must deliberating what are his options and what is the best way to deal with this situation. He remained thoughtful and concerned about Mary and her future.

“But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.”. Mathew 1:20

“Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife.” Mathew 1:24

Again, this was not an easy thing for him. It was a shameful and sinful thing for a young woman to be impregnated before lawful marriage in that culture. The culture in which he was living, would have stoned Mary to death. Unlike today’s culture in the west, where hundreds of babies  are born out of wedlock, but no one cares or dares to ask question to young people.  Many don’t  think it is a wrong thing or sin! 

He found out that it was a  God’s plan for him and Mary. The angel told him “don’t be afraid”. Joseph was willing to be submissive to the heavenly voice of the Angel.  He must have told his parents, relatives and friends that he will not give up on Mary and will take her as his wife. He was going to do one big ridiculous thing which was unheard of in that culture. We do not know  the Bible describes him, that “he was a just man”. There are handful men in the NT who are called “ just or righteous. He was the first “just man of New testament”  we read  about in Mathew 1:19. He did exactly what just man must be willing to do for the sake of Christ. He was willing to be ridiculed and scorned by his friends, family members and neighbors.

Are you willing to be ridiculed by your friends, relatives, and countrymen? Christmas is hijacked by postmodern culture. People don’t want to say “ Merry Christmas!” but “ Happy Holiday!” People want to sing “Santa Baby, ” “ twelve days of Christmas” Rudolf the red nose deer” etc. 

  • Please say “Merry Christmas” to everyone.
  • Play Christmas Hymns and songs.
  • Hang Star or  a Cross in your window or in your yard.
  • Make Christ known and be known for your faith.

Don’t be afraid, let the world ridicule you. Let them say whatever they want to say about you and your faith.

Be willing to be ridiculed this Christmas!

Peter forewarns Christians  in his epistle  that in the last days they will be mocked for their belief in Christ’s Second Coming!

“… knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, 4 and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” 2 Peter 3:3-4

Don’t be afraid! Be willing to be ridiculed for your Faith!! Don’t give up, Jesus is coming again soon!

Christmas Thought: Who are you inviting this Christmas?


maxresdefaultWe get excited about getting  together as a family during Christmas. it can be both exciting and frustrating time because on one hand you are excited about the family members or relatives visiting you but at the same time it can cause lots of anxiety. You have to figure out all the details like how long the guest will stay, where you are going to put all the guests and then cooking for all the guests etc etc. The list goes on. Some don’t invite anyone because it is a burden and lots of work and preparation. Some don’t have desire to invite. Some don’t care  about others. Some wants to keep it between them and their family. Its just a family time.

Let me give you my commentary on Luke Chapter 2. Joseph and Mary had to go back to Bethlehem because of the decree of Emperor. I think  they were hoping to see their family members and relatives and friends in the town of Bethlehem after a long time.  I am guessing there may be other family members of Joseph who may be visiting the town for the same reason of getting registered and be counted in the census. It was Joseph’s home town. There were lots of expectations of getting together with their other relatives and friends.

“Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, ..” Luke 2:4 

But they were shocked and heart-broken! Joseph and Mary could not find any relative or family member or even a friend who could invite them into their home! This is how Jesus and Mary and Joseph were treated by their home town friends and relatives. No one wanted to invite them into their home. (plagued by Bethlehem syndrome! ) This was a reception and hospitality JESUS received 2000 years ago at His First Coming. 

“And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2:7

So they have to spent their time with the cattle. Do you have a place for JESUS in your celebration? Or you have kept him outside because you are too busy in your celebrations.

[Here is a practical lesson from the story of Christmas.                    Don’t be a #Bethlehemite!(see footnote) So often we think Christmas is all about me and my family. On the contrary, I would suggest that its a time when you can open your home and heart for people. Its an opportunity to share your love and your Savior with the people. There are many who are neglected , ignored or overlooked during the Christmas time because of bitter feelings, unforgiving hearts and hatred for particular people group or persons.   Make a list of your Guests for this Christmas. In your list include orphans, single moms/ dads, widows, singles, elderly people  or strangers! (new person in your church, in your neighborhood)] Remember you don’t need a big house but a big heart full of Christ’ love!

Even today, we see JESUS does not get the reception, people have kept Jesus out and replaced him with worldly traditions.  Celebrate Christmas with JESUS CHRIST and with Share Him with those who do not know the real reason of Christmas. Christmas is all about JESUS. Invite HIM into your heart and home today.

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” Revelation 3:20

JESUS is also preparing a place for you. At His Second Coming, He will take you to be with Him.

“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:2-3

(#Bethlehemite is one who does not show or provide hospitality)

Christmas thought: Have you started playing Christmas music?


Gloria

We at our home have started playing Christmas songs. There is something about Christmas time and music. It feels you with excitement and joy. I have always wondered what was it likeon that night while shepherds were in the field, there shone around them glory of the Lord and the angel shared good news of Jesus birth. Later we read there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying ( singing),

“ Glory of God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

I believe this was one of the most melodious music fell into the ears of Shepherd. Shepherds in the middle-east/ east have always played music (pipe or flute )or sang songs while grazing flocks. It must have been a treat for weary shepherds to hear heavenly music with the message of hope and joy.

Think about the message of the music and songs. Share and sing Christmas songs/hymns of hope, joy and peace with your family, friends, and even with foes! People need to hear music of hope and joy in the midst of fear and despair.

At Jesus’ Second coming, we know one of the musical instruments that will be sounded. This will be a very different sound/music.

“For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.” I Thessalonians 4:16

Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Mathew 24:30-31

Enjoy your Christmas music and Anticipate the trumpet sound at any moment. Christ is coming soon! And then we will be singing a new song and play new music (Revelation 5:9-14 ) only if we have truly accepted the message of angels’s Christmas music as did the shepherds.

“Worthy is the Lamb who was slain,
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might
and honor and glory and blessing!”

Christmas Thought: Did you put your Lights up yet?


star and lights

Star and lights

Some of you have already put your Christmas lights up and some of you are going to put up soon. Christmas time is a joyous time and it seems everywhere you go to- like shops,  malls, streets and houses in your neighborhood are all  glittering and shining with the lights.

 

When Christ was born, there was a Star shining in the east in the night. Wise men from the east came,  .. and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” Mathew 2:2. There was not only a Star that was shining, but Jesus who was the Light Himself came to call us out of the darkness into His marvelous Light. Are you walking in the light?  Paul was changed forever when he was confronted with the Light- Jesus Christ on the way to Damscus. (Read Acts 9)   “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:4-5  

At His Second Coming, it will again a night but without a light or a star, it will be a dark night.   “….those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.”   Mathew 24 :29-30. 

Do you have the light?  Jesus said ” I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”.  Its not about the lights on the  house but the light in the heart !

Reflection on James 1:27


Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

We have often asked to ourselves and others what is the right religion? What should we be doing to please God? Does this verse give us warrant to become active in social work? I hope shedding some light on this portion of the Scripture may help you to evaluate your religion.

We must understand that James is writing to the Jewish Churches who are scattered in all different places. He is also trying to help them to see the difference between unproductive religion and productive religion. He is giving them picture of false religion and pure religion which is accepted by God. They must have brought with them in their Church their old religion and practices.

Pure religion – On the word here rendered “religion” (θρησκεία thrēskeia). BDAG says, “it is the expression of devotion to transcendent beings.” Here James is emphasizing external actions and patterns of behavior of follower of Christ. Most commentators will agree that this word refers to the outward, to the external expression of belief. It is outworking of one’s Faith. Faith without works is dead..” We must understand even though we are talking about outer behavior, practice or work, but we are not called to do these outward things out of impure and selfish reasons. This should be the inevitable result of the one’s internal pure religion. The phrase “pure religion” means that which is genuine and sincere, or which is free from any improper mixture.

Undefiled (ἀμίαντος) carries the further idea of a religion free from selfish do-good motives.Andtherefore undefiled religion is what is not selfish and a religion which does not promote one’s own interest. And this is not what one feels about his or her own religion but what is pure and undefiled before God and the Father.

This genuine religion has two elements.

1. First it is not selfish but benevolent. (External Element)

First, the verb to look after or oversee ἐπισκέπτεσθαι (episkeptomai) is a compound verb in which the prepositional prefix epi- places an emphasis on the act of looking. Here, then, it is proper to translate this verb not merely as “visit” (KJV, RSV, NASB) but as “look after” (NIV). It is the same verb used by Matthew in Mt 25:36, 43. it is just not feeling but it is moving with compassion in a tangible way. A Christian is moved with compassion and gives out all what he can liberally, sacrificially and cheerfully. One is not merely giving money but also is actively involved in taking care of the fatherless and widows with his own hands. You are also called to do not for you own glory and praise. We can be tempted to do it and want our name or our loved one’s name on a plaque. How often our giving and our service is merely for applause.

2. Secondly it is not stained but blameless. (Internal Element)

The second thing, we must give our attention to is to this Greek word Unspotted (ἄσπιλον).(“unspotted,” literally, “without spot or stain”) refers to what is morally (spiritually) untainted, i.e. morally unblemished (pure) – “free from censure, irreproachable, free from vice, unsullied” (K. Wuest). The pure religion also demands purity. It is a call to live holy. We should keep ourselves “without reproach”. That is, religion will keep us from the maxims, vices, and corruptions which prevail in the world, and make us holy. James has used word “world” five times in his epistle but on all occasion it is used in negative sense. This means he was exhorting us that there are things in the world that can defile us.What are some of things that can taint or stain us?

a. By world: culture, community, and company (II Corinthians 6:12,Proverbs 12:26 ,Psalm 1:1)
b. By Flesh: Our tongue (v 26), our heart ( Jeremiah 17:9) and our corrupt mind ( I Timothy 6:5) and our lust and greed (Colossians 3:5)This is by no means a exhaustive list.

• Evaluate the motives behind the social work. John 12:6

• New Testament tells us who these widows are, see I Timothy 5:5-10

• Acts 6 is another example of taking care of poor and needy within the church.

• James does not open up a social organization for widows and for orphans. He is speaking to these Christians in their churches, and he is reminding them of their duties. It is Churches’ responsibilities.

• This passage does not give us any basis for social agenda, which has become increasingly popular among evangelicals.

• Many social religious organizations and the leaders of such organization using religion as a “cloak of covetousness” (I Thessalonians 2:5), “whose god is their belly, and who set their mind on earthly things”( Philippians 3:18) and those who suppose that godliness (Religion) is a means of gain. ( I Timothy 6:5)

Our Church in HP, India was attacked by Hindu Militants


We would like you to pray for our Church in  HP, INDIA. The Church got started in 2008. Last Sunday during the worship service a group of Hindu Militants attacked our Church Pastor and the small congregation. They abused him and beat him up. They have asked him to leave the town, since he is living in a rented house. He has two little sons. They have threatened his landlord and asked his landlord to move him and his family out from the house.

Please pray for him and his family and the Church people. It is a very small group of 18-20 people. The authority of the town did not even care to help him nor did the police.

RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal are Hindu Militant groups. They have been persecuting and attacking Christians all over India. Even though these groups are not in majoritybut their population is growing and there are  people who can be classified as silently excepting it or their conscious does not bother them. They have facists agenda: One group, one religion, one language.  RSS is a Hindu terrorist group. Its believes that humanity has only one faith and one culture that is Hinduism. It has a very simple slogan
Hindi,

Hindu,

Hindustan

These groups have infiltrated the police force, government offices and other high offices of India. They have political entity called BJP (Bhartiya Janta Party). They believe India is for Hindus only. They have falsely accused Indian churches and pastors of converting people by giving money. No charges have ever been proved in any places. India government does not give any protection to Christians. More people have been killed or injured by these Hindu Militant groups than any other Militant groups in the last ten years. Extremist Hindu groups are offering rewards of money, food and alcohol to mobs to kill Christians and to destroy their homes in India, according to aid workers in the eastern state of Orissa.*

US and Great Britain must bar members of two radical groups widely linked to the worst anti-Christian violence witnessed in India since Partition from entering the country. Since these groups are funded by the sympathizers and well wishers living in UK and US and Hindu groups based in these two countries.

*The US-based head of an organisation that runs several orphanages in Orissa, one of India’s poorest regions, has claimed that Christian leaders are being targeted by Hindu militants and now carry a bounty on their heads. “The going price to kill a pastor is $250 US dollars,” Dr Faiz Rahman, the chairman of Good News India (GNI), said.*

*A spokesman for the All India Christian Council (AICC) said: “People are being offered rewards to kill, and to destroy churches and Christian properties.”*

(*excerpts taken from other sources)

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