Born-again

Does God Allow Sickness for His Glory?

“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” Luke 12:32

Not convinced? Try this verse:

“If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?” Luke 12:28
Or…
“If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?” Luke 11:11
Would I allow sickness to come upon my son for my glory? I certainly would not. And mind you I am a normal human father, one who is not the Creator of this universe. Do you think our Heavenly Father, who has made all the mountains and the valleys, the seas and the fields, and the 100 billion galaxies; and most importantly the Father who gave His Son Jesus as a sacrifice to pay for our sins – would such a loving and great God be glorified and be happy watching His creation – including His born again children – writhe in pain?
On December 30, 2009, I lost my cousin brother to leukaemia. The side effects of the chemotherapy – hair fall, weakness, galloping infection…do you think God rejoiced in his suffering? My uncle spent his fortune behind the treatment – 4 million Indian Rupees – close to US$ 85000 (which is quite a lot of money here in India). I don’t think my cousin’s suffering brought God any glory. You might ask, “What about John 9:3 and John 11:4?” Well, at that point of time, Jesus had not yet sacrificed his life. The event in that verse took place in between Isaiah 53:5 (“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.”) and 1 Peter 2:24 (“Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”). As you read this, Jesus has already died, been buried, been resurrected, presented his blood in Heaven before the Father, come back to Earth and ascended to Heaven. It is really finished! In fact, it is almost time for his return for the Rapture!
True, unsaved people cannot command sicknesses to go away as their sins are not yet forgiven. But we as believers can pray for them – in fact, we are commanded to lay hands on the sick and they shall recover – and thereby prove that what we preach is the Truth. The Old Testament says in Isaiah 54:17, that the heritage of the servants of the LORD is such that “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn.” Jesus said (in the New Testament – John 10:10) that “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” If no weapon formed against Old Testament saints would prosper, do you think God would allow anyone to form a weapon against New Covenant Christians and then allow it to prosper too – so that He would (?) be glorified…?
Well, I could possibly go on for many more pages. I will…but we will split these up into a few more posts. So do keep commenting. I can gain greater insight and do my bit so that the Body of Christ (of which I am a part) is built up and strengthened by the Word of God and by praise and worship that are done in Spirit and in Truth.
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Why Satan Hates You

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies…” – Psalm 23:5

When Lucifer fell from Heaven, he lost all his privileges. God breathed into Adam and created Eve from his rib; and gave them “dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” (Gen. 1:26, 28) Then Adam and Eve too ‘fell’. But God covered them by killing an animal and using its skin. God thus made them (and not Satan – formerly known as Lucifer) His chosen ones. Sure, Satan was not amused.

Throughout the ages, God kept assuring His people of a Saviour whose Kingdom would never end. And through His Son Jesus, God promises to exalt us too, as is written in Romans 8:17:

And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ;”

Now just think of this. God seats you at a table in Heaven. He prepares the table with the finest things you can imagine consuming. That not being enough, He anoints you with oil. And when all this happens Satan and his fellow evil spirits stand as mute spectators. The glory that would have been theirs is now yours, even though you did not deserve it. Just imagine their frustration! They cannot do anything – it’s too late. If you’re a born again Christian, you’re already seated in the heavenly places with Christ Jesus – you are a joint heir with him!

Satan’s only chance to prevent this from happening (as best as he can prevent it!) is until a human being is saved. Once you’re born-again through turning your life over to Jesus, the devil’s time is up. He cannot attack your spirit. So his next best targets are your soul and body.

When you’re born again, Satan & Co. takes notice of you and swing into action. Whether you survive and thwart the attacks will depend on whether or how much you renew your mind to the Word of God. We will look at this in the next post.

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Tap into God’s Blessings Today!

There was a time in my life when I was jobless for over 6 months. My mother would cry out to God, saying, “Lord, please bless my son. Give him the job that he so badly needs. Do not test him so much. How much more testing will you make him go through?” My wife would pray on the same lines. Their feelings were sincere. But their approach was inaccurate. Read on to find out why.

God has already blessed you

God already blessed me with all that belongs to Jesus – his inheritance – the moment I got saved. If you’re born-again, that holds true for you too. Everything that you will ever need to get you through life was deposited into your spiritual bank account the day you were saved (2 Corinthians 9:8: “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.”). But God will not withdraw any portion of it and place it in your hands. You must do that. They say, “God gives every bird its worm, but He does not throw it into its nest.” How true! Using the authority of the name of Jesus as a born-again child of God, you can actually believe something into existence, so long as it is God’s will too. I have seen miracles happen when I prayed this way – cheques, interview calls, freelance assignments, healing and health and much more. If you are born-again, the power is in your hands. God gave it to you. So, then; aren’t you already blessed?

Unused loaded guns

What happens when an enemy fires at a soldier? He returns fire. The soldier uses his loaded gun to do what the gun was loaded to do – fire! So, when confronted with life’s challenges, would you let your spiritual armoury turn into a museum? Or would you stand on the promises of God’s Word and chase your troubles out in the name of Jesus, never to return? I would certainly do the latter, having seen the results for myself.

What next?

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” (Proverbs 18:21)

The words you choose and speak (confess) determine to a great extent what your reality will be. If you keep praying a complaining prayer, you will reinforce a negative reality for yourself. So choose life-giving words that are based upon the Word of God – the Bible. That’s the first step. The second – and particularly important one – is to believe that what you have confessed has come to pass. Jesus said, “…whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them (believe in the present tense), and you will have them (will have – future tense – 2 minutes, days or weeks etc.).” (Mark 11:24) God put that verse there because He knew how crucial it is for us to use the power He gave us, if we want to see His promises manifest in our lives.

Believe…

Let’s say you are believing God for a healing and someone comes up and asks you, “Hi, how are you feeling today?” What should you say? This is what you should say, “By Jesus’ stripes I am healed!” (1 Peter 2:24) and believe in your heart and with your heart every word of that statement.

…and Receive

Imagine this: You pray for God to bless you. God drops a ball filled with blessings from heaven. If you could physically see God drop that ball, would still ask God to act and release His blessings upon you? You sure wouldn’t! You would confess His Word and receive and catch that ball and thank Him for it. Admitted, you can’t see the Blessing Ball with your physical eye, but you can see it spiritually through the ‘eyes of faith’, if you choose to. So go ahead. Confess the Word, catch the Blessing Ball…receive the manifestation of God’s promises in your life and rejoice!

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New Life Blues? Cheer Up!

Are you the only born-again Christian in your family/community? If so, it’s quite likely you meet with opposition. Take heart, though. Here are some thoughts that will encourage you in your faith…

  • American-Indian saying: “Does the moon stop shining because little dogs keep barking at it?” I’m not saying that your family members are “little dogs!” But you are the light in your family/community, through whom the Light of Christ shines for the world to see!
  • 1st Gen Entrepreneurs: Across the world, in families where the traditional occupation is an office job, the person who dares to follow his artistic or business calling is always meets with criticism. If you have a clear conviction about Jesus and a burning desire to glorify him, just don’t give up.
  • God’s Chosen: They say, “God is looking for people who are looking at Him.” And if you are looking at Him, make sure you look only at Him in the sense that don’t let material temptations or worldly friendships and pastimes take over. God has a special role for you to play for His Kingdom. After all, as it is said, “Many are called, but few are chosen.” Maybe you are.
  • Preserve your Testimony: First-generation Christians can face opposition and mocking and hurtful remarks from relatives, friends, old neighbours and people at large. Don’t let that depress you. Important Point: Your critics are not your enemies. When they ask you “Why Jesus?”, rather than saying “Why not Jesus?”, share the Gospel with them first and then share your testimony. You have overcome the Enemy by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of your Testimony. Pray that the Lord opens their eyes and hearts. The decision is theirs. You have taken yours. Don’t change it.

Follow these steps and who knows – one day, those puzzled by why you chose Jesus, might join you in your walk in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Read this post to know how important you are in God’s eyes.

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Bible-believing Christians – a Blessing for Humanity

Christians are like jungle trees, said our pastor one evening at a mid-week service. You might think that’s crazy, but it’s not. He went on to show why:

When a fisherman wants to build a boat or a barge, he looks for wood. He chooses a jungle tree and not a tree from his backyard. The jungle tree has weathered many a storm and passed through several tests. It is tough and can survive attacks. But a backyard tree cannot.

If you are a born-again Christian, following the Lord Jesus Christ, you are not like a tree in the backyard, but like that jungle tree, which has survived in spite of forest fires, storms, strong winds attacking it. That’s because your roots are strong, deep and wide, founded on the Word of God – the Bible. You have been exposed to attacks from people, situations, the devil and his army…but you have come out a winner through the Blood of Jesus!

Consider this: out of a total of 6 billion people worldwide, only about 700 million people are born-again Christians. That’s only 11.66% of humanity! God has definitely chosen you to act as a blessing for the other 5.3 billion – or 88.34%; has He not? So your knowledge of the Bible and its application needs to be real strong. As James rightly says, “…be you doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” (James 1:22; Also read Luke 6:46 and Romans 2:13)

Study the Bible every day – it acts like food for the spirit. Even if your roots are strong, deep and wide, they need to stay that way lifelong! True, sometimes there is not even some time. But try to make at least some time!

Purchase a Study Bible from Christianbook.com, if you do not have one. You can buy a version that suits your needs, but I suggest you buy either the Open Bible (New King James Version) or The Thomson Chain Reference Bible (King James Version). The NASB/NIV versions are good too.

The question we want to ask ourselves before going to bed is:
“Have I opened my Bible today?”

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