Purity of a Child’s Heart.
Purity of a Child’s Heart.
by Timothy Tay
The crucified, dead, but alive-again Christ, is the hope of all people. He is risen with the power to change lives. He has overcome the weaknesses and brokenness which grip the human race. He reigns as Lord, the one with authority to lead us. He is the infinite reference point to guide our lives, and the near at hand friend to heal us. Salvation Army
When Adam and Eve disobeyed God and sinned, God made garments of skin to cloth them from their shame. Genesis 3
Abraham obedience even to the point of not withholding his son, his only son, from God had resulted in a covenant that “through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.” God provided a ram as sacrifice in place of Isaac. Genesis 22
Passover lamb, which was sacrificed and its blood put over the doorposts as a sign of faith, so that the Lord passed over the houses of the Jews during the last plague poured out on the Egyptians – the killing of every firstborn except for those of the house of Israel. Exodus 12
Jesus became the Passover Lamb who took away the sin of the world.1)John 1:29 NIV
Salvation belongs to our God,
who sits on the throne,
and to the Lamb. Revelation 7:12
Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain,
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength
and honor and glory and praise! Revelation 5:12
Further Suggested Readings:
Messages from Australian Churches
Message from Archbishop Hickey
Have a safe Easter – receive Jesus Christ into your life.
|1.||↑||John 1:29 NIV|
by Timothy Tay
At that time South Africa was just a few years free from the Apartheid era. Graham was happy to report that the last bombing in his city happened just days before the prayer gathering 10 years ago and there is no repeat ever since. With the success of the initial 45,000-strong attendance at the city’s rugby stadium the event was repeated in many cities, some with 100,000s in attendance, all over the world in a short few years.
Edmund Chan from Singapore said that there is no other event in Singapore that unify the churches in his city in such a way and in such a scale as the GDOP event. Hong Kong, Jakarta and many other cities around the world reported similar experience.
What followed were some remarkable events – the first declaration of ‘Sorry’ by the prime minister of Australia following a surprise victory in the general election that year, a noticeable and positive shift in the national conscience towards the first people of Australia and the beginning of some bold attempts to put all of these into practice like the Generation One initiative.
If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
(2 Ch 7:14 -G D O P’s guiding verse from the Bible)
|1.||↑||WIN’s Robin Walker proudly unfurled the Aussie flag at the GDOP 10th anniversary conference in Cape Town [top].|
|3.||↑||GDOP Perth 2007|
by Timothy Tay
It is not surprising that glory and weight go together for in Hebrew the word glory (kabod)1)http://biblesuite.com/hebrew/3519b.htm has its root meaning as weight or heaviness.
Thus Paul wrote that he would gladly exchange his afflictions for a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory 2 Cor 4:16-17.
Are you called to lead?
Can you identify yourself in the experiences that Saul had?
You may say he’s been there and done that. And yet Saul fell from grace not once but twice by failing to take instruction from Samuel whom God used to speak to Saul 1 Sam 13:13, 1 Sam 15:22.
Saul’s disobedience came about when he took his calling as king of Israel more seriously than the One who made the call.
When pleasing the people becomes greater than pleasing God it is not surprising that God rejected Saul and looked for the one that is truly after His own heart. (Ichabod),2)http://www.bible-history.com/isbe/I/ICHABOD/ the glory of the God of Israel had left Saul. The only glory Saul had was the golden crown weighing on his head.
Abraham received the call of God to migrate from Ur to Canaan and to be the father of many nations. And when God told him to offer Isaac as a sacrifice Abraham was willing to lay down the call to father nations and obeyed his Call’er.
The greatness of a man is not on the crown he wore on his head but in knowing when to lay the crown before the throne of the King of Kings and proclaiming:
You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being. Rev 4:10-11
Paul, who is also known as Saul, by his own account been the worst enemy of the early Church, received the call and went on to fight the good fight, finished the course and kept his faith (2 Tim 4:7).
by Timothy Tay
One lesson we can learn from the events in Chile and Haiti is the obvious need to be prepared for impending disaster at all times.
Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour says Jesus to his disciples when he foretold of impending disasters and if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved is Jesus assurance of his return for the sake of his elect (Matthew 24:22).
Build your life then on the Rock of Ages1)http://awake.seranates.com/jan/Jesus-Christ-is-the-Rock-of-Ages.htm that cannot be shaken,2)Hebrews 12:26 NIV a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation.3)http://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?quicksearch=sure+foundation
I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built. But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete. Luke 6:47-49
|2.||↑||Hebrews 12:26 NIV|
by Timothy Tay
Like his fellow Muslims he acknowledged that the ticket to heaven remained a mystery that Allah dispenses according to his mercy. Earning the rights to enter the gates of heaven include much fasting, prayer, charity and fighting in jihad. On this jihad path Bashir1) | | : 2002 Bali bombings, Wiki and Hambali had lured many JI followers with express tickets to paradise via suicide bombing attacks on infidels. From Makassar JI fighters were sent to the frontline city of Poso in central Sulawesi to commit acts of murder targeting Christians and bombing of church buildings.
For this reason God’s grace abounds even more in Makassar as witnessed by the small but vibrant church community. Even before the month of Ramadan (muslims fast) many Indonesian Christians observed a 40-day fast and gathered regularly to pray. It is no wonder the Church in the island of Sulawesi (Makassar being the state capital) is witnessing many miraculous acts that gave much encouragement to the Church but confounded the Muslims.
And this year came a report of the Meko phenomenon (Meko is located just outside Poso) when an eight-year old child, Selvin Bungge,2) | | : New Signs of Various Breakthroughs Are Emerging In Indonesia was wonderfully used by God for miraculous healings to both Christians and Muslims alike.
Acts of love and effective prayers are keys that Christians in Indonesia are using to unlock the bondage that gripped the largest Muslim nation in existence.
Directing Muslims like Jemal to the Holy One of God as the Way, the Truth and the Life and the only means to the Father (John 14:6) will release Muslims from a life of meaningless servitude into a life of freedom based on a loving relationship with the Savior Jesus Christ.
Love your neighbour, bless and pray for Indonesia.
by Timothy Tay
When Ali Jinnah decided to break rank with India’s Gandhi and form the new state of Pakistan in 1947 he sought to create a democratic society with freedom of religion guaranteed through constitution and keeping the government secular.
In 1979 the civilian government under Ali Bhutto was replaced by General Zia-ul-Haq who introduced a blasphemy law to appease the muslim radicals in the society.
This law had given grounds to radicals to persecute Christians.
Martyr Feroz Masih:
who was killed by Karachi Police firing in front of Governor House on February 13, 1997, during a peaceful protest procession against Muslim mob attack on a Christian village Shanti Nagar in Punjab province of Pakistan. In clouds of tear gas shelling and police firing on Christian protestors, hundreds became unconscious, dozens were injured while nine received bullet injuries and more than 1,000 were arrested. Feroz Masih was among those nine critical bullet wounded Christian who were rushed to JPMC Hospital where he died with his one hand tightened in police hand cuff to his bed.
Bishop John Joseph:
who was mysteriously murdered by secret agencies of Pakistan on May 6, 1998, in Sahewal city of Punjab province of Pakistan. Martyr Bishop John Joseph was Catholic Bishop of Faisalabad Dioceses who led rallies and observed hunger strikes against blasphemy laws and raised voice for oppressed Pakistani Christians on International forums. There were gatherings and prayers on anniversary of Martyr Bishop John Joseph organized by Catholic Church of Pakistan and socio-political organizations funded by him up to year 2002. Now years have been passed and none of any organization has bothered to issue any press release on anniversary of Bishop John Joseph.
Nawaz Masih and James Masih:
were first Christian Martyrs of Pakistan who were killed by Police firing in Rawalpindi when police opened fire on peaceful protest procession of Christians against nationalization of missionary Schools, Hospitals and Colleges during ZA Bhutto government in 1972. This protest procession was taken out from Gordon College Rawalpindi and marching towards Governor House to present memorandum against nationalization of Christian institutions. Like Martyr Feroz Masih, Martyr Nawaz Masih and Martyr James Masih were also not Bishops or high profile Christian leaders but common laymen who had love for Christian nation in Pakistan. The families of Nawaz Masih and James Masih were not supported by any Christian political groups or Bishops who had been enjoying benefits of Christian institutions and living like feudal lords. It is very unfortunate that none of any Christian clergy and association have ever celebrated or marked anniversary of our Martyrs.
There are Martyrs of Essa Nagri in Karachi:
who laid their lives defending Christian children and women when Muslim land mafia attacked on this largest Christian colony in Sindh province of Pakistan. These Two Martyrs of Essa Nagri have graves in Awami Church of this colony and people pay homage and offer prayers on their graves.
We must not forget but honor those Christians with award of “Martyrs” who were killed by extremist Muslim groups on accusations of blasphemy weather they not sacrificed their lives to ensure basic democratic rights through a political process and voiced on streets of Pakistan against regime controlled by Muslim majority.
Let us remember:
Tahir: who was killed in Lahore jail awaiting trial of blasphemy, Bantu Masih who was stabbed to death in lockup of Lahore police on blasphemy charges, Manzoor Masih who was gunned down in front of Lahore High Court when coming out after hearing of case under blasphemy, Rashid Brothers who were murdered in Faisalabad Court House when came to face blasphemy charges in police custody and other Christian victims of blasphemy being killed in jails or roads.
Martyrs of Gojra city in Punjab: (seven children, women and elder)
It is horrible incident of August 1, 2009, when Muslim mob attacked Christian Town in Gojra city and burnt alive seven children, women and elder.
Shahbaz Bhatti, Federal Minority Minister:
was assassinated on March 2, 2011, in capital city Islamabad. The banned outfit Tehreek Talban Punjab accepted responsibility of killing Shahbaz Bhatti and warned same fate for anyone who comments on blasphemy law. As a federal minority Minister Shahbaz Bhatti has announced to revise blasphemy to prevent its misuse against religious communities which was disliked by extremist Muslim groups in Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
Two notable politicians had been murdered this year so far because of their opposition against this legislation:
Related articles :
by Timothy Tay
In 1975 communist Khmer Rouge under Pol Pot took control of Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia, Year Zero was immediately declared as the year of the new beginning for the nation.
What unleashed from this revolutionary zeal was a scale in cruelty and brutality unrivalled since Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Russia resulting in genocide where 1.7 million Cambodians, a quarter of the existing population, perished.
There is no institution that symbolised the cruelty of the Pol Pot regime more than that of what took place at the high school of Tuol Sleng, converted into the regime’s interrogation centre, code-named S-21. Kang Kek Lew, “Comrade Duch”, then aged 34, took charge of S-21.
By the time of the Khmer Rouge’s defeat in 1979 by invading Vietnamese forces, more than 15,000 Cambodians and a few foreigners were sentenced to S21, none except for a dozen survived.
A news correspondence, Nic Dunlop, having earlier received a copy of the photo of Comrade Duch, in 1998 took on a personal mission to track Duch down. He found Duch, a provincial director of education, at the border with Thailand, by then he had become a born-again Christian in the process of building a church next to his house.
Duch acknowledged his identity only after a few meetings with Dunlop and then confessed of his crimes while at Tuol Sleng.
He spoke of his new found faith and said, “My life is now in God’s hand.” Nic Dunlop was pleasantly surprised at the ease of finding Duch and of his ready confession.
He was immediately filled with sorrow and seeing some former detainees present at the scene he readily sought their forgiveness.
At the initial tribunal hearings Duch was obviously in great remorse when he read out his confession, “I asked forgiveness to my parents, I asked forgiveness from all my teachers, and I asked forgiveness to the victims of all the crimes.”
He went as far as encouraging his accusers and survivors of Tuol Sleng testifying at the tribunal to tell the truth, nothing but the truth, for “you cannot cover up a dead elephant with just two tamarind leaves. The world needs to know the truth.”
Several news coverage of Duch’s criminal proceedings had made mention of the fact that Duch is now a Christian — an obvious reference to the way Duch had conducted himself at the tribunal2)see NTDTV report
Comrade Duch, one of today’s most notorious mass murderers, had experienced the transforming power of faith in Jesus Christ not unlike what Paul experienced on the road to Damascus 2000 years ago.
The turnaround in Duch’s life since becoming a Christian is also happening amongst many Cambodians, estimated at 2 percent of the current population of 14 millions.
In other parts of this great transformation story to come I will endeavour to cover the works of various people and agency, both Cambodian and foreigner, that had made Cambodia today one of the world’s most exciting harvest fields.
by Timothy Tay
Recently I made a careless mistake of switching our (my wife and I) mobile phone services from one telco to another with little consideration of the repercussions. When I was slapped with a huge bill that include the cancellation fees, full charges for the unexpired terms and the balance of the then latest smartphones costs that it had finally dawned on me the folly of my action.
My Christmas was ruined for sure I thought. Imagine going to the 2-bucks shop to hunt for Christmas gifts and holidaying in Mandurah rather than in Singapore?
My empathy begin to go towards the impulsive young who fell into the same predicament as I had which was driven, on one hand, by our own lack of discretion and, on the other hand, by falling prey to all the enticing marketing campaigns put out by the telco and smartphone companies.
I rang the phone company and requested for a reduction of the charges but I was promptly rebutted for breaking the contract. I was devastated to think that I being a businessman of over 30 years that I could failed to read and understood the contractual terms – especially that which come from biggest telco of them all?
I thought to myself that this is probably a sign that my time in business is up now that I have lost the edge for wheeling and dealing.
However, just before the telco officer hung up he did say that he will take sometime to make the final decision regarding the matter. And today he rang and told me he is going to drop all charges – including the cancellation fees – in line with the spirit of Christmas! What compassion, what underserving grace, the very essence of Christmas.
Even now as my mind tuned to John Lennon’s hit that’s been played at this time of the year I realised that what I have done or failed to do over the past year paled into insignificance when compared to what God had done for us all when He gave us His greatest Gift on Christmas day. It is after all only after considering what our Father in heaven had done that we be led by this same spirit to do for all.
Have a blessed Christmas. Peace and joy to all near and far.
December 23, 2011
Even today from the city of my alma mater, Christchurch, we received news of another series of major earthquakes.
This is the third time in less than two years that the city had been hit prompting one to wonder if there is still more to come. By all probabilities even three times in a row is highly unlikely but often three strikes is all it takes to dampen the most stubborn spirit once and for all.
Over the recent years the world had experienced unprecedented shakings not just in the physical but also in the financial, like the GFCs, but also in politics like the Arab Spring uprisings.
One cannot discount the possibility of more of the same from happening. If at the same time other major disasters should take place like global warming, medical and sociological epidemics and others you may wish to postulate – humankind worst fears had finally hit home.
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. John 16:33
We ought to celebrate Christmas and by knowing the will and purpose of God for this special day in history we will celebrate wholeheartedly:
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6
by Timothy Tay
Some years back I met a Coptic pastor from Zabaleen in Egypt, Father Samaan. He told of a historical event that happened in Cairo during the 10th century reign of Caliph Al Muizz. The Caliph, as the head of the Islamic empire, had wanted to get rid of every Christian in Egypt and the opportunity was presented to him during a court debate.
He challenged the then Pope of all Egypt to move the mountain that was spoiling his view across to the Nile to prove that the word of God in the Bible is trustworthy.
The consequence of failing to move the mountain was for all Christians to be converted to Islam or be perished. Pope Abram as the head of the Church in Egypt immediately called for a three days of prayer and fasting throughout the nation. During the course of their prayers the ground beneath the mountain shook and after the third time it had clearly moved from its foundation.
The Caliph was so impressed that he not only he spared the lives of the Christians but became a great supporter of Pope Abram. According to Father Samaan some geologists recently did carried out a test on the grounds surrounding the mountain to determine whether there was a mass shifting of land formation at the location and to their surprise they concluded that there was indeed an earthquake of such a magnitude that it had forced the mountain to move some distance away from its base!
This event in the 10th century contributed to some extent to the resilience of the Church in Egypt in stark contrast to the demise of churches all over the Arab speaking nations over the duration of the various Islamic caliphates. Incidentally, all the seven churches referred to in the book of Revelation had all ceased to exist. What made some Christian communities thrive and others decline?
And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. (Heb 11:6)
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. (Rev 12:11)
God has not forgotten Egypt:
In that day there will be an altar to the LORD in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar to the LORD at its border. It will be a sign and a witness to the LORD of hosts in the land of Egypt. When they cry to the LORD because of oppressors, he will send them a savior and defender, and deliver them.(Isa 19:19-20)
Isaiah has not written about the past when God used Moses to deliver Israel out of Egypt but he refers to a future date when Egypt once again resumed its ancient enmity against Israel. Isaiah went on to declare in the same passage that:
In that day there will be five cities in the land of Egypt that speak the language of Canaan and swear allegiance to the LORD of hosts. One of these will be called the City of Destruction. (Isa 19:18)
It is a mystery as to the actual location of the City of Destruction and of its role in Egypt’s future.
More importantly, the Church in Egypt can take heart that God is preserving them from their enemies and the Christians who kept faith will surely share in His glory.
What’s more, The day will surely come when even the powers from the east and from the west will join Israel as one family of worshippers:
In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria, and Assyria will come into Egypt, and Egypt into Assyria, and the Egyptians will worship with the Assyrians. In that day Israel will be the third with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth, whom the LORD of hosts has blessed, saying, “Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel my inheritance.”(Isa 19:23-25) Assyria was the superpower at the time.
The reference is probably not the geographical Assyria which is in today’s Iraq and Iran but most likely to USA and its allies.
One New Man
The Arab Spring is an ominous development as far as Israel is concern.
Europe, regrettably, appears to be abandoning Israel and America’s resolve to protect Israel is weakening.
However, take heart for our Lord had said to this generation to keep watch and to look out for the sign of the budding fig tree (a figurative statement about Israel):
Now learn this lesson from the fig tree:
As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door.(Matt 24:32-33)
The God of Israel has not abandon the Jews:
Lest you be wise in your own sight, I want you to understand 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.”(Rom 11:25-27)
The time is coming when the fullness of the Gentiles has come in, if indeed it has not already come, and the hardening that has come upon Israel is giving way to repentance and we shall hear the sound of their cries for their Messiah, “Baruch haba b’shem Adonai”:
For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.'”(Mat 23:39)
For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. (Eph 2:14-16)
When faith, hope and love abide, eternal peace is our reward and God be our inheritance.
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased! (Luke 2:14)
Maranatha. Even so, Lord Jesus, come.