Something to Celebrate? – Part One


We received an invite to our Granddaughter’s 7th birthday party. What an exciting event! I began to ponder that seven short years ago she was about to be born. At that time our lives still had an empty space that she was about to fill – what a joy! Reason to celebrate? – most certainly!

Recently our youngest daughter got married. Who would have thought 26 years ago that she would make such a beautiful bride and indeed, wife. Reason to celebrate? – most definitely.Marriage Celebration

Over the last two years, our youngest son had been having a great challenge finding a job after we had spent a good sum of money putting him through his training. Two months ago, he received a job offer in the industry he loves and is now employed. Reason to celebrate? – absolutely!Quatar Cabin crew

All of us have reason to celebrate something in our lives at one time or another, however big or small. Generally speaking, we put a lot of effort into the celebrations because we want to show those concerned how much we love and appreciate them.

Our spiritual relationship with the Lord should not really be any different.

Among the many reasons that we have to be filled with joy at what the Lord has done for us, are two incredible truths. These two acts are worth us celebrating – wholeheartedly.

Truth One (of many):
Jesus died for our sins. Our debt has been forgiven . Why do we still go through our journey of life bearing the weight of our mistakes?

Provided we accept Jesus as our saviour, and are truly sorry for things we haven’t got right in our lives, then our Lord has paid the ultimate price so that we can be free of the guilt of all our wrongdoings. “…and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more”, says the book of Hebrews.

Friends, from this moment onwards, let us walk in the newness of life, unburdened, as we realise we no longer have to account for our wrongdoings. Jesus gave us this free gift, all we need do is accept it. Reason to celebrate? – most certainly!

How do we celebrate this wonderful gift?

In 1 Corinthians we see that we should “..celebrate the feast…in sincerity and truth…”.

As we gather around the table to celebrate, we have something in common. Communion – from the word ‘common’. Jesus shed His blood for our sins. ALL sin for ALL who will accept the gift. ALL sin for ALL cultures. ALL sin for ALL nations. Jesus gave His life that the whole world could have something to celebrate – in common. A universal ticket out of spiritual death.

As we take the drink (which maybe any suitable liquid), we remember the words of Jesus when He said, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me”.

To Be Continued……

Something to Celebrate? is a two part series, join us next week for part two.

From: “…time with the Master…”

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The Divine Romance – Part Three


In Part One and Two we saw that according to Jewish custom in the time of Jesus, a Father had chosen a bride for his son. The parents had agreed a contract, and the son had to build their wedding chamber at his father’s house. The Bride was not aware when her Bridegroom would return for her. While waiting for her Bridegroom, the bride would ready herself in anticipation of his arrival. She would burn a lamp in case he came at night. Eventually, without warning he would arrive and take her away to the marriage chamber. We saw that those who are born of water and born of the spirit are the Bride of Christ and need to ready themselves for His coming to collect them. In the parable of the 10 virgins, we saw that the virgins represented the Church. Five of them ran out of oil and were not ready when Jesus came to collect them….

Continue reading “The Divine Romance – Part Three”

The Divine Romance – Part Two


In Part One we saw that according to Jewish custom in the time of Jesus, a Father had chosen a bride for his son. A contract had been agreed by the parents, and the son had to build their wedding chamber at his father’s house. The Bride was not aware when her Bridegroom would return for her….

 Preparing Herself

She busied herself collecting items for her trousseau and getting her wedding gown ready. Whenever she went out, she wore a veil over her face to show that she was betrothed. This would discourage any other man from approaching her father for her hand in marriage.

As time moved on she would light an oil lamp and keep it in her window, in case her bridegroom arrived at night.

Stolen Away!

The Jews of the day had an understanding of the heart of a woman and therefore, they would ‘steal’ their brides away. For the most part, the best time to do this would be at night. As time drew near, the bride and her maids slept together in their wedding garments. They did this in readiness for being stolen away.

Eventually the bridegroom arrived. As he neared his bride’s home, a shout would go up, “Behold the Bridegroom”!  With that, his party would rush in and snatch the bride and her maids away. The merry group would go down the village street singing and shouting. People would peer out of their windows to watch the merrymakers passing by. They could identify the groom, but the bride wore her veil so she would not be known.

During the seven day period in the chamber together, they would become acquainted and according to Jewish law, were not allowed out, until their marriage was consummated. Following this event, they celebrated their wedding feast with all their guests.

In Relation to Matt.25:1-13

How shall we now relate this traditional Jewish marriage ceremony with our interpretation of the parable in Matt.25?

We must begin by understanding that the major purpose of our salvation is that we, the body of Christ, the Church, must be made ready to be married to the Lamb – Jesus.

It is God the Father, who has chosen a bride for Jesus from His body of believers. Even as the first Adam’s bride was taken from his side, whilst in a dead sleep, likewise, did the second Adam, Jesus, have His bride taken from His side after He died; His bride is His Church.

The Contract

Jesus and His Father had to negotiate to purchase this bride from her fallen state as the daughter of Adam. She was a slave to her sinful nature and was unable to redeem herself . So the price that was paid was high – the very life of Jesus in fact.

On completion of the agreement . Jesus drank wine  and later told His bride that He was going to His Father’s house to prepare a place for them.

Preparing Herself

He left His disciples with the task of waiting. Preparing their trousseau of ‘good works’.

These works however were only works that emanated out of their love relationship with the Father. Why emanating from a love relationship with the Father? Because no works of eternal value, can be achieved any other way.

Jesus does not want His disciples to walk in the world without a veil of righteousness; they must never flirt with the world’s system. In other words, they must be seen to be believers.

Believers are cleansed by the blood of the Lamb and thus forgiven their sins. They have the power of the Holy Spirit to be overcomers in this life. Their relationship with God the Father will prepare them, in this life, for the Lamb’s wedding feast in Heaven.

Who are the 10 Virgins?

Virgins 3
Ten Virgins

In the parable, there are ten virgins. Who do the virgins represent? The Greek root word says they were unmarried daughters, brides, and separated, to mention just a few definitions. In terms of our day, we would say that these virgins are symbolic of the Church.

Just the wise ones? No, both the wise and the foolish. We say this because they were all waiting for the arrival of the Bridegroom.

If the bridegroom had arrived before midnight, would they all have been ready?  Yes.

What caused the five foolish not to be ready? They ran out of oil. What is the importance of oil? Oil is symbolic of a relationship with God. No oil – no relationship with God!

Virgins 4
The Foolish Virgins

The five foolish once had a relationship God and followed Him but they had left their first love and waxed cold.

 Be Continued….. The Divine Romance Part Three will follow next week.

From: “…time with the Master…”

If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’
button).

 

 

 

Mission Malawi – Chapter Nine


 

Field Trip

14th – 21st November 1994

The following is a report of a field trip completed by two disciples of the Lord. The purpose of the trip was mostly a teaching experience to see how the Lord can bless those who are willing to give of themselves completely to His will.

It should be carefully noted here that we would be foolish to try and test God.

A trip of this nature should never be undertaken without careful and prayerful consideration. Everything which we do must be born out of the seed of prayer. God will speak to those who are willing to listen and will teach those who are willing to be manageable in His hands. Often, our hearts desires and strong wills, prevent us from hearing the gentle voice of the Spirit.

Continue reading “Mission Malawi – Chapter Nine”

Mission Malawi – Chapter Three


24.02.94

We are trying to make the best of what we have. Very difficult. There are many flies and cockroaches. The ablution facilities are not good. There is a small outside building, one half a toilet (long drop), and the other a wash room. To go to the toilet we must squat over the hole in the floor. The smell is terrible and there are many large flies buzzing around.  Large cockroaches crawl on our legs at the same time. The extreme heat does not help the situation.

Continue reading “Mission Malawi – Chapter Three”