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Grace: A Total Transformation

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And when the blood of thy martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by, and consenting unto his death, and kept the raiment of them that slew him” (Acts 22:20). This is Paul; recounting his former deeds. You admire Paul right? Before he became Paul, he was Saul: a murderer and hated believers with all zeal. He has blood on his hand. Today, if you are looking for the equivalent of Saul(Paul), look at the most gruesome terrorist group around: Saul(Paul) could could be a leader of any one of them.

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

God Loves You

Faith In Jesus For Eternal Life

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16).

I have met humble, good and morally upright people who care less about Jesus. Is Jesus then saying, "No way" apart from faith in me? even for these good people? Yes, that's exactly what He is saying. Either it is true that Jesus is "...the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.(John 14:6) or it is not true.  I have said before in a post that beliefs--religious beliefs have dire eternal consequences and it is everyone's responsibility to have right beliefs. Your beliefs would either land you in hell or heaven. Well, you can also believe death ends it all...that also is nice. But it has its consequences.

In a democracy, we all have freedom of worship, but that democratic right doesn't change God's truth neither does God adjust…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From The Gospel of John Chapter 3

Continued from Previous Post

The Relationship Between God and The World Part 2
For God so loved the world...(John 3:16) When I sat down last night to write today's topic, I overheard my kids singing..Jesus Loves The Little Children/All the children of the world/Red, brown, yellow, black and white/They are precious in His sight/Jesus loves the little children of the world ....I listened to them and in the process, they interrupted my train of thoughts...I was going to talk about Agape, Storge, Philia, Eros...and other Greek meanings of the word Love.

Now, these kids, in their innocence and carefree life(what is life all about is not in their vocab) would never ask questions about the love of God. Jesus loves the little children; a child's world: No questions asked! It is us adults, grown up men and women, who  start asking questions when the love of God is mentioned. If you have been around for a considerable number of years, you would have had your fair share of the pains, hur…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

12: God Loves You(continued from previous post)

1: The Relationship Between God And The World Part One
For God so loved the world...( John 3:16). The first introduction of God we see in the Bible is that of a Creator. The Architect of the whole universe. The universe, humans, animals and plants all take their origin from God: "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" (Genesis 1:1). Psalms 24:1 further tells us "The earth is the LORD's, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.(Psalms 24:1).

I recently read an article in the 21st-27th October, 2012 edition of the Catholic Standard which speaks volumes about the Creator and His relationship with His creation. In the article, the Cardinal of Washington, Donald W. Wuerl is quoted to have said:
[ a] tsunami of secularism” has washed across the world, leaving in its wake a tendency to deny God’s existence, or to deny that God’s existence is relevant to human thinking and action…. Witho…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

12: God Loves You
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16). Imagine this:

A guest preacher is introduced in your church. He mounts the pulpit. He does all the usual pleasantries, announces his theme; then asks everyone to turn to John 3:16. Most probably, there would be three  responses: One group of  persons would not refer; because they are familiar with the text and can recite it from memory with ease.

Others, still with an attitude of familiarity, will develop apathy towards the preacher: "what has he got to say?". The third response, would be like the second; but apathy would be replaced with fervour: "what has he got to say?"

Again, still with familiarity to the text in mind, try hard to imagine how a child who has spent enough time in a Sunday school class would recite John 3:16. It might go like this(the breaks indicates the sloppiness of child-l…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

11: Jesus Christ: God's Remedy For Sin
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. (John 3:14-15). Long before He came unto the scene, His life and mission was announced through the Patriarchs and prophets of old. Jacob prophesied about Him: "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. (Genesis 49:10). Isaiah spoke both about His birth, death and sacrifice of atonement: "...Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel"(Isaiah 7:24), "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the i…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From The Gospel Of John 3

10: Christ Must Be Revealed In Our Message To The World.
And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.  And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:(vs 13-14). In this conversation with Nicodemus, we see a familiar trait with Jesus when He engages in conversations.

Eventually, in many of his interactions, He ends up  talking about Himself. He begins with stories, parables, analogies...from the familiar to the unfamiliar; then plummets into His deity and identity as the long awaited Messiah. He refer people to Scriptures and what has been prophesied of Him. Read the gospels and you will notice. My favourite is in John 4: 25-26, Jesus' interaction with the Samaritan woman; "The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he."

"I t…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

9: The Natural World Conveys Spiritual Truth
Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things? (John 3:11-13). Jesus, what a Master communicator He was. He told stories. He used parables. He drew analogies from the natural environment; all with one agenda: conveying spiritual and eternal Truth. From Childbirth, Death, Aquaculture, Agriculture, Meteorology, Parenting, Light, Darkness, Bakery and we can add on, He had something to say. In this interaction with Nicodemus, we see Jesus drawing an analogy from childbirth to explain spiritual birth---born again.

I said in a previous post that just as our natural birth gives us entrance into the human race, our spiritual birth also gives us entrance into God's Kingdom:
...Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom …

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From The Gospel of John 3

8: How Much Premium Do You Place on The Bible?
Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?(John 3:10). You see, Jesus' question to Nicodemus indicated that everything He has been explaining to him about the new birth was right there in the Old Testament, and Nicodemus, a Pharisee ---scholar in the Old Testament--- should easily understand the new birth. That explains Jesus' shock. "Nicodemus, you should know these things?"( my own rendition).

Clearly, Jesus was saying, "Nicodemus, this born again I am telling you is nothing new. It is not a new idea. It is right there in Scriptures. Nicodemus, you should know these things". Being born again was not a new term Jesus invented. Rightly so, New Testament is a fulfilment of everything prophesied in the Old. See Born Again in Old Testament:
For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land. Then w…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

7: Half-Truth is No Truth
Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?(vs 10). Standing in front of Jesus is a man described in vs 1 as a Pharisee and ruler of Israel.  In today's diction he could pass for a theologian and a bible scholar.

In Nicodemus, we find a truth that should guide us all in life and especially in our Christian walk. We can know many things yet not know the truth. Jesus' question was one of an expression of surprise. I can imagine the face with which He asked that question. He definitely was amazed. His question indicates to us that the idea of born again is in the Scriptures and not necessarily a new idea. Nicodemus being a master, Rabbi should have known, but, he only  knew half-truth, which is no truth at all.

In Acts 18 also, we see another man who knew so many things yet didn't know the truth. "...Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures..."(Acts 18:24).

M…

Seeking For Truth: Lessons From John Chapter 3

6: Born A Christian: A Great Deception..
That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.(vs 6). Today, I have a few questions for those who call themselves Christians. Why are you a Christian? Is it because you were born into a christian home?

Maybe Christianity is all you have known and  grown up with. Are you a Christian on the grounds of having grown in a Christian home? Great deception! You are heading towards hell if you don't pull your breaks and reconsider your beliefs.

I grew up in a christian home: Raised and groomed by Christian parents. In fact, at a point in my growing up, my dad quit a rewarding career to become a Pastor. So, not only was I raised by Christian parents, I became a PK (Pastor's kid). But, at a certain phase of my life, with understanding into what it means to be a Christian, I  had to come to Christ in faith, repent of my sins, confess Him as Lord and Saviour and open up my heart to Him to be Lord over my li…