All posts by maggiY

WHO IS IT YOU’RE LOOKING FOR?

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This is a question God or Jesus asks any one of us.  God knows, as human beings we have a capacity to search deeper into the universe, and are always looking for something and fascinated by something bigger and stronger than us.  We long for protection because we get scared easily sometimes.  Many of us would seek God at one point in our lives, especially when things get tough, that’s why we end up praying.  For, it is in our human nature to ask for help.

Sometimes, as you know, some of us would get to a point when we start searching for some kind of inspiration, e.g. someone would look up to a celebrity, a political leader or a religious leader to follow. But when we examine them we find imperfections and we get disappointed.

And on other occasions,  we end up trusting those who are closer to us  and we get even more disappointed when they let us down.  However, if we want to get it right with God, we have to be careful about whom we follow and trust.  If a person preaches the right message according to the scriptures, Jesus is pleased.  So when he asks, who are you looking for?  He also warns us to be careful. Mathew 7:15-23

It is also in our human nature as you know, to hunger for a good leader, someone who can motivate us , hence giving us assurance that things will be fine.  Jesus had perfect qualities of a good leader. He listened to peoples’ concerns, fed the hungry, healed the sick, opened the eyes of the blind, etc.  He was the kindest person who has ever stepped on planet earth, with a purpose to save us.

He knew there would be people with a different message from his, and he said, ‘such things must happen’ Mathew 24.  He also said, ‘No one can come to the Father except through me’. John 14:6

Who is it you’re looking for? – is also applied when we start searching for who to worship.  (He knew people will be seeking God in various ways, and some will be searching for wrong gods).  The scripture says; seek God, the creator of the whole world with all your heart and you’ll find him. Jeremiah 29:11-13.  Jesus said, ‘when a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me, and when he looks at me he sees the one who sent me’. John 12:46.  We learn from here that Jesus represented God perfectly, just as his  Father in heaven wanted.

God created Christianity through Jesus.  The scripture says, Jesus is the word of God, John 1:1-5. His teachings came straight from God.  Jesus’ teachings transforms a human being from inside out.  It touches the core of a human heart, and touches every area of our thinking.

Jesus said, ‘follow me’Math. 4:19, for he knew about God and life more than we do.  Babies are closer to God than adults, because they haven’t exercised their sin.  However, as we start our journey of life, we somehow lose our way by wrong thinking and decisions.  In Christianity Jesus is like a perfect kind hearted, loving, big brother, who’s like saying to us, hold my hand and I’ll show you the way.

So when we walk with him, we look up to him and listen. To the thief he says, don’t steal. If you hate someone he says, don’t hate, be good to them instead.  And then he says’ forgive or you will not be forgiven…Mathew 6:14-15

For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I’ll raise him/her up at the last day. John 6:40

 

ARE YOU SLEEPING?

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Jesus would say to any one who is sleeping – wake up!  It means to get into the scriptures and understand what he is saying.  It also means to be alert to his message and put it into practice, and to be aware of his warning.  Mathew 6:13 He goes on to say, choose the narrow road..and pray that you don’t fall into temptation.  He advises us about what it means to be baptised in water, and how to worship God in truth.  (Acts 2:38)  Babtism is an indvidual decision before God, which requires us to examine ourselves and to fully understand what it means.  According to scriptures it means to bury the old self (which had gone astray from God) into the water and come out as new person/creation. (means a person is in the light, understands the will of God and are willing to obey, therefore they’re on the narrow road- on God side)

I was baptised as a young teenager when a priest sprinkled water on my head.  I thought I did the right thing.  I didn’t even change inwardly, for I kept on living a life of sin, as I totally ignored the Bible.  But God was on my case, when years later, something kept on nagging me; you didn’t do it the right way.  I remember thinking; I want to do it the biblical way as Jesus did, for he set an example for us, when he was baptised as an adult in the big water, Math. 3:15-16, even though he didn’t have to because he had no sin, it was part of God’s plan.  So what did I do?  After studying the Bible, I was baptised by being fully immersed in a pool.  It was something I’ll never forget, and so special that I cried.

Some people may ask,  is it right to baptise babies?  My question is how does Jesus see it?  He wasn’t babtised as a baby, and there is no where in the Bible that it should be done so.  God will judge according to what you have done.  From Jesus point of view a baby has done nothing wrong apart from being born with Adam’s sin.  And the scripture says God exercises absolute justice.

Most of the questions Jesus used are intended to get us think.  For the believers, he asks, ‘Do you really love me?’ and he goes on to say, ‘obey my teachings’.  So that means obeying God and loving Him go together.  If you want God to love you, obey Jesus’ teachings. John 14:23.  Jesus wants us to understand what it means to love God, which he explains in the scriptures.

Do what pleases him.  He says; Love him with all your heart, in thinking, and obedience.  He also knows we will never be perfect, but  wants us to do our best and take his words seriously; to have a heart of obedience and focus on the scriptures; that’s why the scripture says confess your sins, 1 John 1:9.  (Confessing a sin requires obedience and humility).  It softens a heart, when we acknowledge our sins and feel deeply remorseful  before God and then ask him for forgiveness through Jesus.  And when we sin against someone, we go to the person and apologise and ask forgiveness. James 4:16  But when we confess, we have to set our hearts on loving God by being obedient to his word; for Jesus advises us to be humble before God, to repent and do the right thing. Luke 24:47

photo 16‘Are you still sleeping?’ is also directed at someone who goes to church but still doesn’t understand.  For God to open our minds, we must be willing to take in his words and guidance.  Jesus said, ‘the word is food’.  Food nourishes our physical being, which synonymous to the word of God nourishing our spiritual being. This is crucial because it means we take his words in our hearts and set our mind on obedience by living our lives accordingly.  We have to remember God’s guidance is for our own good, for it keeps us from getting into trouble, and gives us peace to enjoy life in abundance. John 10:10

When He asks, is that your idea or did others talk about me? John 18:34 – is directed at someone who is misinformed,  distorts the truth about him, and has another theology.  Another question he asks, why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? – This gets us to examine our hearts and thoughts.

To be continued..

 

JESUS AS YOUR BEST FRIEND

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Jesus said, ‘God our Father in  heaven’,  provides our needs.  The way He deals with us is similar to a good relationship between a parent and a child.  Any good parent would not want their child to do wrong, so he or she guides, protects and disciplines with love.

As you can tell, the questions God used in the Holy Bible are similar to ours. This kind of relationship between a human and God especially when you listen to him and try to reason even though He knows what you are thinking is beautiful, for you can feel His love and kindness.  And when your reasoning is good, you hear an answer from the Holy Spirit which speaks to your mind, ‘you’ve answered correctly’.  A Greek woman did just that with Jesus, and he approved. Mark 7:24

Having Jesus as our best friend is the best thing we could ever do, he is there when we need him, for he operates through the Holy Spirit.  No human being would ever fill that position.  And this pleases God (YHWH). The moment we become born again, John 3:7 – we get into God’s Kingdom, and get into a transformation and a sense of happiness. Our thoughts and actions become beautiful just like the scriptures.  (I relate this to when a pupa changes into a butterfly.)

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The scripture says we become children of God. I John 2:28-29. Now that he is our friend, we end up loving him, and listen to him by following his teachings and do what he says. (John 15:14).  He is now our preacher, counsellor and teacher.  He is with you wherever you go and advises you on every situation.  He comforts you when you have problems and says,  ‘everything is possible with God’.   When you start worrying, he says, ‘don’t worry!‘  When you are afraid, he says, ‘take courage’. When you face a temptation, he says, ‘use the scriptures and run away before you get yourself into trouble’.

Nothing pleases God more than someone building a relationship with him through Jesus.  If you read the Bible you’ll understand why? And when we sin, we have to ask God for forgiveness through his son Jesus.  However, He still wants us to do our best when it comes to following the scriptures and obedience.  Even though Jesus is in heaven seated at the right hand of God, he is watching the world and operates through the Holy Spirit.  Luke 22:69

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We all look for real friendships, those who understand us, and care about how we feel.  A real friend who operates within or outside a family is special because they operate with love, and listen to our concerns. They are aware of what pleases us and are loyal.  Jesus feels the same way, he knows his real friends are the ones who listen to him by taking the scriptures to heart and actions.

Many religious people  make a mistake of ignoring  what God says through the Holy Bible, to help them understand the truth about salvation. The scripture says, live a life that pleases him. I Thess. 4:1-8.  Ephesians 4 :17-32  Jesus says, get into the word of God and obey it, that’s the only way to enter into God’s kingdom.  It’s not about relying on what a particular church or anyone else is saying.  It is about relying on what God says, because in the end He is going to judge us through Jesus Christ, according to his word. Math. 25:31-34, Romans 14:9-10, Heb. 4:12-13

To be continued….

HE QUESTIONS AN ATHEIST

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Later on God asks a man again (Job).  Job loved God, but he had an issue God wanted him to see, which was to do with justice.  It is fascinating to see how God (Yahweh) questioned him. But to any one else who doubts His existence or justice, the following apply;

Brace your self like a man, I’ll question you and you shall answer me.

Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me if you understand.

Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?

Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it, and set doors and bars in its place?

Have you ever given orders to the morning or shown the dawn its place? What is the way to the abode of light? Where does darkness reside? Can you take them to their places? Do you know the path to their dwellings? Surely you know, for you were already born!

Would you discredit my justice? Would you condemn me to justify yourself?

Do you have an arm like God’s and can your voice thunder like His?

(NIV Job 38)

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GOD’S QUESTIONS

God’s questions are designed to get us into thinking about the deep issues that connect us to him; thus to help us to reason and understand clearly about what we know, especially when it comes to his plan. That’s why His first questions began with, Where, Who, and What.  When you keep on reading through the New Testament, Jesus who represented God perfectly used the same questioning techniques, including Why, How, etc.  God doesn’t question us when we are babies, it is only at that point when our conscious is totally in-tuned of knowing right and wrong, and are able to reason when it comes to making decisions.

God questions us and in most cases we are not even aware. For example, if you believe, why don’t you read the Bible and do what it says?  Note; Questions normally include ‘You’, which means the finger is pointing at you.  And when we have bad thoughts, Jesus would ask, ‘Why do you entertain bad thoughts in your mind?’ Mathew 9:4 .  Another question which Jesus would ask; what are you going to do?  or what are you doing? However, when we ask ourselves questions, they normally include ‘I’.  For example, what was I thinking? Or what am I doing?

To be continued………………

GOD COMES UP WITH A SOLUTION

After the great fall, the Serpent, Adam and Eve were subject to judgement which goes on to affect the rest of mankind. But God (Yahweh) in the end comes up with a solution; Jesus (Yesuah) – to help mankind.  He does it step by step by using the prophets.  (Hebrew 1:1)  Note; when Jesus came, he preached and solved people’s problems.  He was a perfect Doctor; through him we get a treatment for Satan’s bite (sin and its consequences).  Every problem he solved pointed to the most important healing of all, which targets the spiritual side of us Adam messed up.  Jesus brought about Salvation and forgiveness to build a bridge between God and mankind. That’s why He emphasised on believing, love, and obedience.

flowersThe fall of mankind was the beginning of questions which connect to our own hearts.  And because we are made in God’s image we also ask questions, which are normally directed at each other.  The words that come out of a person reveal who they are.  However, when it comes to asking God, it is good to ask for wisdom, especially when we don’t understand the scriptures, or about any situation we find ourselves in. That’s why Jesus says, ‘ask and it will be given to you’… Mathew 7:7 (He doesn’t mean ask for anything that comes up in your mind).  He means, ask according to God’s will.

Occasionally, we may find ourselves asking Jesus questions which begin with a why.  Now a question that comes to my mind; why did God ask Adam first, considering it was Eve who sinned first?  (And the Holy Spirit says, because God spoke to him first.  He had that initial relationship with God, and he could have been adamant to say no to sin, and remind his wife of God’s commandment, but he didn’t.  It was his first fatal mistake which went on to affect all humanity apart from Jesus).

Sometimes just like Adam and Eve, we play the blame game to cover our sins. Instead of taking responsibility of acknowledging our own sin and changing it or reading the scriptures, we sometimes give excuses.  Sin has a way of making us crumble; Satan the master planner of all wrongs has a way of playing all kinds of tricks and lies on us, and will give us all kinds of reasons to convince us, it is okay.  But God wants us to know the truth, and understand the Holy Scriptures.

The Effect of Adam’s Sin

sjc j0035The effect of Adam is so clear in our own lives, which the Bible says; birth pains, marriage breakdowns, stressful toiling etc, and then finally death.  But before that we go through other zones of insecurity:

War zones of unhappiness,  can’t seem to get enough, fear or no peace,  confusion,  feelings of emptiness or doubt,  lack of understanding, selfish attitudes,  weighed down by money problems,  and to name just the few.

WHAT IS THIS YOU HAVE DONE?

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Subsequently, God turns to Eve and asks…What is this you have done?  (The same question goes to the rest of us) Genesis 3:11.  Moreover, even if Eve had been listening all this time, she does what her husband had done.  Reasoning with the half truths, playing the blaming game, and somehow giving excuses, as she tried to hide her own sin, instead of taking responsibility.  But, I believe God wanted her to think wisely; that acknowledging her sin and having a contrite heart would get her to connect to God again.  Nowadays, some of us deal with it by repentance and asking God for forgiveness through Jesus.

What have you done question – helps us to analyse the consequences of our actions, especially when the action is connected to sin.  Also to think about God’s laws and how it affects us and others. The alarm in our minds (a rooster’s call), which goes off before and after the wrong action, is designed to get us to be aware of a sin.

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Those who are rooted in faith (Jesus) are more alert to the call, because they read the scriptures and have the Holy Spirit to guide them.  Jesus through the Holy Spirit will always remind us to say no to sin and of judgement.  One thing about the Bible, it goes into details and mentions every area of sin.  Jesus goes even further to explain; it’s not just the actions, but the thoughts as well, such as hatred, envy, etc.  For every sin begins with a thought, and comes from the heart, Mark 7:20-23.  Real transformation or repentance takes place in the heart first and then extends to thoughts and actions.

TEMPTATION

The first question which can also be translated as (where are you now?) is  applied to a situation or temptation, where we have to exercise a thinking process before we take action which normally results to affect us and others before God.  When you think about it; we often learn from our mistakes.  If we are wise enough we don’t do it again, or we sense the danger of sinning and avoid it altogether.  Sin normally carries a sting.  In this case, Jesus would ask; what have you learnt?

Another crucial point is; the questioning and reasoning process helps us to come to that turning point.  Sometimes, when our hearts are contrite, we can express good reasoning and come to a clear understanding. To make a turning point, requires us to assess our lives by looking deep within, and weigh decisions whether they are right or wrong.  And eventually to seek His wisdom from the Holy Bible, which delivers us from a lot of heartache and leads us to salvation.

To be continued…………..

WHO TOLD YOU?

God asks: Who told you that you were naked? …The conversation is getting even more intense. I believe at this moment, God wants him to think even more…it is not about clothes!  Before that, he was a confident man without clothes, now he feels ashamed.  He wants him to think deeply, even through his confusion.  He wants him to acknowledge his own mistake and exercise good reasoning, in order for him to gain understanding.

False information often confuses our minds.  Spiritual wise, God wants us to think about where the whole truth is coming from, (is it based on His wisdom?)  He wants us to understand clearly that wrong information comes from Satan (the master planner of lies). Jesus said, ‘He is the (whole) truth’, because Adam’s sin did not affect him, for he came from heaven and knew everything about God the creator in total perfection.  He said, ‘when a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me’. And then he says, ‘there is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day’. (John 12:44-50 NIV)

He came to the world where many people were confused, and bombarded with false information, that’s why he was so passionate when he preached and gave a warning about false prophets, and false preaching (distorts the truth), Mt. 7:15.  When you keep on reading further, he speaks to John through the Holy Spirit and mentions the anti Christ are coming into the world.  They even deny Jesus as the son of God, and that God sent him to save the world. I John 2

Have You Eaten..?

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Back to Adam, God confronts him with more questioning, to remind him about the commandment they had just broken, which was an act of unfaithfulness.  When he found his words again, he pointed a finger at his wife.  This now goes on to be a blaming game. The woman you put here with me…Probably, in his mind he is thinking, if it wasn’t the woman, I would be on the right track. Nevertheless, God wanted him to examine his own heart and responsibility, and stop giving excuses.  Does that sound like someone you know? Someone may blame somebody else/society for their behaviour or sins, and some may blame God when things fall apart.  But of course as we all know, there is another side to the coin when an innocent person carries a burden of another person’s wrong actions’ which most of us experience once in a while.

To be continued….

I WAS AFRAID, SO I HID

Moving on, Adam says, I was afraid… Now insecurity has flooded his mind, which is common to all of us.  Bear in mind, before that he was a happy man without a tint of fear, and not worried about life. Genesis 3:10

Then he goes on to say, because I was naked…Before that, he was totally in control.  Now he starts to feel insecure about life and his own body. The Adam syndrome has a profound effect on us, and we get into the habit of examining ourselves and find something to feel insecure about.  ‘Nakedness’ in a spiritual sense indicates insecurity – without God’s protection in Jesus, in his word, or guidance through the Holy Spirit. 

I think Adam and Eve must have come to a point when they felt regretful about what they had done.  I believe after God saw how insecure and regretful they were, He felt sorry for them and clothed them, which later on symbolises Jesus’ sacrifice, as a covering and forgiveness for our sins.  When Jesus was about to be crucified, they took his clothes, and then after the crucifixion he was covered with a linen cloth.  For every thing that happened to Jesus, was as God planned it to be, to rescue mankind from Satan’s control.

Afterwards, he goes on to say, so I hid… he is got so much fear that he hides. (Bearing in mind he had no where to go). Really!  How can you hide from someone who knows where you are?  To us, sometimes we forget that God is watching us and cannot hide from Him.  We have created a lot of hiding places, e.g. science theology, focusing on money, false beliefs, and Just like Adam and Eve we hide our sins.  So when Adam and Eve came out of hiding they were able to talk to God again.

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To be continued…

I HEARD

Back to Adam, his first answer was, ‘I heard you were in the garden… (Avoiding telling the whole truth) Does that sound like someone you know?  Sincerely, the majority of us have heard about God, and have come to different conclusions.  The word of God is his garden (Kingdom) and the tree of life is Jesus, because he said, in him you’ll have eternal life, John 3.  What we hear gets us into the action of producing a faith fruit.  And normally the actions we take will either lead us to the dry ground or a proper garden.  As a scripture says, you reap what you sow…Galatians 4:6.

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During Jesus’ time of preaching, when people heard that he was in a certain location, they would walk miles to get to him.  Each of them had a reason why they wanted to see him. Those who went to him were all healed physically and spiritually, Mark 2:1-6.  Most of our time is consumed by hearing information, who said what, what happened, and who is telling the truth.  Jesus went on to say, ‘I am the truth’, because he had no sin, so there was no false information in him.  And he says, ‘think carefully of what you hear’ Mark 4:24. He also said, He and the Father are one, meaning every word Jesus said came from the Jehovah God (the creator of heaven and earth).  And he said, ‘everyone on the side of truth listens to me’. So it doesn’t matter what anyone says. According to God, Jesus is the real deal.

To be continued…

THE FIRST QUESTION

After the testing which God allowed,  (if you keep on reading the Bible you get to understand that Satan has boundaries – Job ),  Adam and Eve had to go through intensive scrutiny.  Sadly, when they made that decision of touching the tree and eating the fruit afterwards, it was a hardening of hearts on their part. But I’m sure their hearts softened when they acknowledged their sin and that they had done wrong by disobeying God, and I’m sure they cried a lot.

Moving on, after Yahweh (God)had seen everything that had happened and had examined their hearts,  He decides to speak to them.  Note; He didn’t start by telling them what they’ve done.  He starts by asking them questions.

Where are you? ..A question that comes to my mind; why did God ask Adam, when He knew where he was?  Note;  God sees everything for nothing is hidden before him, Heb. 4:13, and knows what we are thinking.  Even Jesus demonstrated this in his mission.  Adam on the other hand, after realising the mess he and his wife was in, he then analyses the situation and skips a direct answer, but tries to understand what it meant. That’s why he didn’t answer I’m in the garden somewhere!  And to us; it doesn’t mean I’m relaxing in a cafe in New-York, or  I’m climbing a wall in China and it is not easy.  I’m on Mt. Kilimanjaro, or  I’m on the London eye and it is nice out here.  I’m busy on my computer, trying to get some work done,  or I’m watching TV and it is really taking a chunk of my time.

This question is crucial; why?  Because you have to see where you are in order for you to see where you’re going, which means you have to see your mistakes in order to correct them.

Now I believe God wanted Adam to examine himself, in regard to his thinking, actions, and to acknowledge his own mistake.  He wanted them to see things from His own perspective.  Now that sin had entered their minds, it was impossible for them to go back to the man and the woman they used to be.  And the Holy Spirit says the question applies to anyone with a reasoning mind.

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And when it comes to Jesus, he asks the same question, where are you, when it comes to God and His plan/word?  From Jesus’ point of view which is based on truth, the world is divided into four sections of people; for some where the heart on the rocks, others the heart is in thorns, and for others the heart is on the dry ground and for others the heart is on the good soil. (Mat. 13:1-23)

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Later on, He mentions the two roads, the narrow road (is clear and full of light in God and Jesus) and the wider road (full of Satan’s darkness – messed up with false idolatry and heartache)….In this case, he would ask, ‘which path are you on and where is it leading you?’ (Mt. 7:13)

 

To be continued….