Mission Malawi – Chapter Sixteen


Why don’t you start the series from the beginning – click here.

15.10.95
All has been quiet on the ‘wakhuba’ front. We are very tired but still blessed by our hourly watch and praying at night.

Continue reading “Mission Malawi – Chapter Sixteen”

God is a Timeless Tale


“What is the purpose of my life on this earth?” – People have asked this question,more than any other in the history of humankind

Belief in God is that purpose and God is a timeless tale.

Belief in God?

Who is God and why do I need to know who God is?

Good questions – always deserving of an honest and unbiased answer. These are questions that would invite, maybe, thousands of different answers.

Why not start here: God, to you, is whom you personally perceive God to be, surely?

You could make a definitive statement, say, like some do, “God is the creator (and resulting ruler) of the universe and this statement would be supported by what is written in the Bible.

Then again, what is the Bible and how can it claim authority to make the above statement?

What is the ‘Bible”?

Bible believers will profess that what we see in the bound books of today, bearing the title ‘The Bible’ and consisting of sixty six (or if you are a Roman Catholic, Seventy two) books bound into one, and that these are the breathed word of God, and therefore give authority to this statement of who God is.

To add to this statement, there is another claim that the Bible makes:  “God is one God”, meaning that there is no other God but Him. (His gender is also confirmed in the Bible).

Such statements are the basis of Bible believing theology of Christians.

Is Christianity the only true religion?

This theology invites the question, “What about all the many other religions, outside of Bible believers, many which are much older than modern Christianity, in our world today”?

Is the God of the Christians the only God and all other religions are false?

The quick answer to this is: NO religion holds the keys to God’s Kingdom, here on earth or in the eternal realm, save God Himself.

These are very important questions to all of us fellow travellers, in the world today. They are questions that deserve honest factual answers.

Let us not be deluded, the answerers to these questions have been responsible for more wars, deaths and crusading campaigns than any other activity on the surface of the earth. This means, that there is no painless solution to answering these questions.

Let us return to the earlier statement, “God, to you, is whom you personally perceive God to be, surely”?

This discussion begun with two questions:

Who is God?

Why do I need to know who God is?

  1. Who is God?
  2. Why do I need to know who God is?

For the moment let the statement, “God is to you whom you personally perceive God to be.” be acceptable and let us move on to the second question.

Why do I need to know who God is?

To answer this question, let us deal with a few facts to begin with:

  1. We ALL have a limited lifespan on this earth. Dependent on where you live on this planet, that could range from 50 years to 80 years on average.
  2. When this lifespan ends, we die and our bodies will decompose or burned to ash, dependent on our choice of burial procedure.
  3. However, there is no scientific evidence that our souls and spirits, which during our lifetime were composite with our bodies, will face the same fate.

What happens to me after I die?

With the above indisputable facts in mind, we should, at the very least, give consideration to the question – “So, what happens after I die”?

If your answer is, “When I die that’s the end and there is nothing more”. Then it does lessen the importance of the questions, whom God is and why you need to know God.

However, If you respond, “I honestly don’t know and would be interested to find out”.

If you see no future after the death of your body, then surely you would have no need of God, whomever He might be.

Then let’s take a look at the resulting option for you in this case.

If you see no future after death of your body, then you surely would have no

The Soul consists of our intellect, emotion and will. The spirit is like an internet connection to the ethereal world

need of God, whoever God might be. So, you can just jump off the religions roundabout and relax.

If on the other hand, you believe, or even vaguely suspect, that your soul and spirit will live beyond the grave, you have a few other options.

In order for all of us being ‘on the same page’, let me give you my definition of soul and spirit.

The human soul is that part of us that consists of intellect, emotion and will.

The human spirit is a communication channel to and from the ethereal world.

Now, don’t get too fazed if you do not agree with this definition, just accept that it is a fairly good basis to continue with for now.

If you are happy then; that the soul and spirit continue into another phase of existence, you will logically decide that the next existence must have a structure of sorts.

Again, logic would suggest that if there is a structure, there will also be a management system for that structure.

What type of structure and what type of management system is ahead of you is not relevant for now. What is of greater importance is; how will you fit into this structure and management system?

If my Soul and spirit do not die with my body – what happens to them?

Like all structures and their management systems there may be rules and regulations. Possibly not the kind of rules and regulations that we are accustomed to, like, “do and do not” but more of the order of, “if you do so and so, the result will be….or if you do not do so and so the result will be….” Much like, if you forget to put fuel in your car’s petrol tank, your engine stops running; in other words, cause and effect type rules.

To recap then; if you believe or only think, that your soul and spirit live on after the body dies and that they will move into a different existence, the question arises; where can you find immigration requirements to move into this new existence? Your best choice here, if possible, is to talk to someone of authority in the immigration department.

Now this is where the matter of God enters your space.

By the way, Instead of using the name God, we could use, president, department head, CEO, whatever we like really, as long as we get the right information regarding our immigration requirements, to enter the new existence. By the way, I refer to God as ‘Him’, but it could just as easily be ‘Her’, whatever you choose. The reality is that; God is asexual, because of being Spirit and not human.

Assuming that you have decided that there is the possibility of life for the soul and spirit after bodily death, the possibility that your soul and spirit will pass into a new way of life which will be different from life here on earth. Assuming there will be a need for you to conform to the requirements needed to enter the new existence and live this new life; then you will have to take a hard look at all the various religions in the world and choose one which will offer you the immigration requirements you need.

Once you have decided which route you will take; work at it with all you worth and be happy.

Never forget this important statement:

It is not a matter of which religion is wrong or which one is right – the important thing is; will it work for you? If it works for you – good. Do not fall into the most common religious trap of believing that your religion is the only true religion; rather respect all your fellow travellers on the road of life, even if you cannot accept their religious beliefs.

There is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ religion. There is only you and God.

Wallace Wattles, circa 1880-1914, said, “Nothing is right, nothing is wrong, nothing is good, nothing is bad. All is as it should be and all is well with the world.”

My definition of religion is: ‘the study about God, without God’. One does not need to know about God, one simply needs to know God.

Now, let us say that you do believe, or even suspect that the soul and spirit will live on after the body dies. Then, what I would like is for us to travel through the following chapters on a ‘What if…’ basis. In other words, be completely open minded on what you read.

If you don’t agree with what you read as you go along, bear with it and persevere, otherwise ‘shut’ the e-book and carry on as you are.

Should you find that you are happy with what you read, then, very definitely carry on, because, in the end you will either get your answer to the above questions or you will be, at the very least, one opinion wiser.

Should you find that you are having some difficulty with understanding what you are reading and need to ask a few questions, then jot your questions down on a piece of paper and continue reading. In all probability, you will find that your questions will be self-answering as you read along.

If this does not happen, by all means, return to the website that gave you this e-book and post your questions on the blog site.

All set? Let’s go to the first chapter…….

A Timeless Tale is a rerun series, by demand, and will appear each week from today.

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Picture Credit: Izaak Van Oosten – Garden of Eden – https://www.google.com/

A Timeless Tale is a twenty six-part series and is directed to souls who find the issue of religions, churches and denominations confusing. The series will run weekly from this point.

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.
If you are spiritually inclined see my other site; http://www.adcrucemchristi.com
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Mission Malawi – Chapter Eight


Mission Malawi – Chapter Eight

Customs in all cultures can bind people and often allow for the word of God to be compromised at one point or another. “This is a hard saying…” and can only be revealed by the Spirit of God Himself. We tend not to receive such words because of trying to hold on to our ‘old ways’. God needs to be seriously sought for confirmation of these deep sayings. On many occasions we saw the Word of God take back seat because customary ceremonies were being fulfilled. Christians were attending these ceremonies not for any other reason than fear of what others would say or do if they did not attend.
A normal Sunday service in a large denominational church was cancelled and visiting missionaries from another country were turned away because a funeral service was being held in the community that day. It is sad that the church should bow to the rules of men.
Generations of witchcraft have allowed dark spirits to invade the church. Those who say they are ‘born again’ believe they are on the way to the Kingdom of God. Jesus said unless you are born of water and of the spirit, you will not enter the Kingdom. This is more than just being born again. Those who are born again only receive ‘sight’ of the Kingdom (awareness of God, the sinful nature and the Devil), not entry to the Kingdom. What we saw was that those who were not totally born of water and of the spirit, brought traditionalism into the church.
Singing and worshipping was very much along traditional lines, only the words having been changed to make them ‘Christian’. Darkness was still present, deep in the hearts of those attending. A person can only truly worship God in the spirit, by the power of God’s Spirit.
We found very little worshipping in spirit, all was done by man’s will and power. Certain (scriptural) phrases and lines were used over and over again at nauseum, to stir the congregation into a frenzy of yodeling, screaming and chanting sheep, using the same format, week in and week out. Few had their hearts and minds on God, but were thinking of other things. Meanwhile those leading the service were enjoying the feeling of power which they held as they manipulated and ‘amused’ the congregation with their ‘antics’ while preaching.
“….One day as Titus and I labored in the garden, he began to share some interesting thoughts and observations with me. He said that he had noticed that most white people were able to look after material things better than the average Malawian. He said that generally, whites were able to manage businesses better as well as other situations and he wondered why it was like that. I marveled at this statement and knew it could only come from one who had been truly born again. It was not said with malice or mockery, neither from a racial point of view.
We began to share much about our races, European and Traditional African – the fact that we were both ‘Africans’ having been born and bred on the continent. Was it in fact possible for the two races to hurdle the culture barrier and live successfully under one roof and what was the answer to his question?

Needless to say our time in the garden was much longer than we had planned. We shared about the curse of Ham in the book of Genesis which spoke of Ham’s descendants being ‘servants of servants’ and the fact that this led to the African continent being born into ancestral worship. “Does this mean all traditional Africans are cursed?” he asked me. I said, “…if you think about it – we are all cursed until we turn to our Lord to be saved!”
I explained that Jesus came to the earth to restore back to us everything that was lost originally in the Garden of Eden. Therefore it doesn’t matter which culture, color, race or country we come from, we all have the same opportunity to know the Lord and be released from our past – whatever that is.
Generally speaking, this would account for the observations Titus had made – some people appeared better adapted to certain functions and other people to other functions. However, this finding in no way entitles one to be superior over the other. God intended all to be equal and He is the judge of men’s hearts, irrespective of which race they come from. The teachings of the New Testament in the Bible continually warn that there must never be discrimination.
So, as for our discussion, we talked on as the African sun got hotter and hotter. “Even your skin is better suited for indoors”, quipped Titus.
The Lord showed us that the only way for two races to live together in ‘harmony’ would be through Christ Jesus. Men have been trying for centuries to create peace and harmony with little success.
In African counties where the war for freedom has been won after many years of struggle and senseless loss of life, there is now a, “shoe is on the other foot” attitude. This type of attitude may rarely been seen in the open and even less rarely admitted, but it nevertheless is present.
It is this way because the heart of man holds onto unforgiveness and cannot be changed by systems of men. It requires deep change from the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ gave each human being a new heart, one that truly desires to do the things of God, not just talk about them.
If we, as humans can come away from our reliance on culture, we are then in a true position to ‘love our neighbor’. Not with a sloppy kind of human love, but the real love that Christ has for us. A love that cares whether or not somebody gets to the kingdom of God. For that purpose, we should be prepared to lay our lives down. Are we really in a position to do this now?
God has done much in our hearts while we have been here, in order that we live the way we do. It hasn’t been easy and there is still much to be done in all our hearts, but now we begin to see that through Jesus, it is definitely possible to live and work together in real peace….”
As human beings, we have a great need to be ‘entertained’. The world would term this ‘escapism’ – to take our mind off the things which burden us. Sadly, this has inadvertently crept into the church today as many dote on the ‘performing’ pastor. Congregations grow in the belief that the word of God is attracting many, but instead the sinister undertone of the flesh is ever increasing. People are drawn in by acting, instead of being pierced by the truth of the Word.

If we find ourselves saying, “What a wonderful personality, what a fascinating person, He has such insight!” then what opportunity has the gospel got through all that? It cannot get through because the attraction is to the messenger and not the message. If a person is attracting others through his personality, that is his appeal. If his life is totally laid down for the Lord, then the appeal becomes what Christ Jesus can do. The danger is to glory in men, but Jesus said that we should serve Him with all our heart and that He only, should be lifted up.
“….The Pastor that worked together with us for eight months, side by side, sharing good and bad times together, we later discovered had reported us for “abusing human rights”.
It turned out that he was disgruntled about not receiving, what he felt, was a fair wage out of the small food business. His true heart was revealed when his brother disappeared with one of our bicycles (in “lieu” of wages). His heart was more intent on gaining worldly things, than the things of God. We are never in a position to judge others. That is the sovereign work of God. The Lord showed us that people’s actions stem out of a trust, or lack of trust in God, something we all suffer from.
In this particular case, the ‘Pastor’ simply could not fully believe that God would supply all the needs of his family and consequently tried to do everything in his own power, becoming afraid when he could not see things ‘coming together’ as he felt they should. However, this was a man who was teaching and preaching the word of God, many times sharing things which were not testimony in his own life. The object of sharing this example is not to judge or ridicule this ‘Pastor’, but to expose the truth of the situation as it currently is…”
It is not the intention of this article to criticize precious brethren in Malawi or anywhere else in the world. God brings us to places, among people, and into certain situations to accomplish His definite purpose through the spirit in us. Our part is to use intercessory prayer in everyday circumstances and to bring people God puts around us, by His grace, before His throne.
“….After own little food business was closed, due to ‘red tape’ formalities, we became a little concerned ourselves. We prayed and God has used faithful and obedient brethren to support us. We firmly believe in working with our hands as Paul did, so that God can bless us with our needs, but now for the first time we are “solo” as it were, still working with our hands each day, but not in a ‘money earning’ job, so to speak. It is now living by trusting in the Lord, for the first time….”
On September 26th 1994, in answer to a word which was given to us while we were still in South Africa in 1993, our faithful brother Jacob Arthur came to join us. What a great blessing to have him with us, we are so grateful to the Lord for allowing him to come and help us; it’s been nearly six months without ‘likeminded’ fellowship.
The Lord has blessed us once again and we have been able to have electricity connected to our home. We realized just how much we had taken for granted the electricity in our houses back in South Africa. To be able to have electricity at the touch of a switch and running water in the house at the turn of a tap….surely a great blessing.

A bi-monthly series brought to you by:

…time with the Master

Next article will appear two weeks from now – watch out for it.

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.
If you are spiritually inclined see my other site; http://www.adcrucemchristi.com
Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’

Is there space for God in my life?


Imagine an Elephant and a Rhino living in a small room. It would be very difficult for the either to move around. In order to ease the situation, it would be good if the Elephant lost weight and ‘shrunk’ – as it were. As the Elephant loses weight and becomes smaller, it is easier for the Rhino to move around.

Continue reading “Is there space for God in my life?”

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”

Unlocking Wealth in Business


Today more than ever there seems to be a widespread feeling that the Spirit of the Lord is showing us that our walk with Him needs to be more practical. Gone are the days where believers hear the word of God and are unable to practically see it outworking in their lives, as fruit of what they have heard. One of the reasons for this is….’My people perish for a lack of knowledge…”

Continue reading “Unlocking Wealth in Business”

A New Hope


 

As we look around today there are many things which do not give us any hope…. the economy, our work situation, debt that we find ourselves in, to name but a few. If we focus on these negative situations we will eventually become very disheartened.

Continue reading “A New Hope”