The Lord Jesus Christ appears before those who seek Him from the heart

John 20: Jesus and Mary at the Tomb | Jesus resurrection, Jesus, Mary  magdalene

John 20:14-17, 14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.

15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for? Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”

16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic,  “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

17 Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

In the gospel of Matthew, Mark and Luke we read that after the crucifixion of Christ. At the third day before dawn three women, mother Mary, Mary Magdalene and Susanna went to the tomb to prepare the body of Jesus with oils. In John 20:1 onwards, we read that Mary Magdalene reached the tomb while it was still dark. According to the customs of the Jews, after the death and burial of a person, they come and prepare the body with perfumed oils. There was huge danger/challenge before the ladies who were going to the tomb of Jesus. They were all alone in the presence of Roman guards, and there was a huge stone which covered the mouth of the tomb. Matthew 28:7, Luke 24:5 , we can read them discussing as to who would help them roll away the huge stone.

Yet when they reached the tomb, they found that the stone was rolled away to one side of the tomb. While they were in distress and despair, disheartened over not finding Jesus. they saw two men dressed in white sparkling clothes who told them that Jesus had risen. they ran and told the Good News to the disciples. They ran to the tomb and seeing that what the women had said was true returned to their room. Mary Magdalene kept crying in despair at the tomb. When the disciples huddled up inside a room in hiding, why did Mary Magdalene stay behind in tears??? Let us think….

1.Strong determination and focus: Mary had gone to the tomb to follow the customs and put oils on the body of Jesus. But her desire did not happen as the body of Jesus was not there. The happenings of Friday ran like a scene in her mind while she was going to the tomb. Her Teacher(Jesus) was the only person who loved and accepted her unconditionally. She sat crying broken hearted at the tomb like a child who had lost her father. She experienced being orphaned by all, an isolation and loneliness so painful it cannot be put to words. She sat down with a firm determination that even though she didn’t know what happened to the body of Jesus. She would not return without getting to the roots of what had happened. The strong desire of her heart rooted her feet to the place of burial. Knowing the inner workings of the heart, Lord Jesus Christ appeared before her. She was the first person to have the blessing of seeing Him first after resurrection. John 20:16, 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

2. Valued Jesus more than her own life: Mary Magdalene did not fear or deter seeing the Roman guards. Even after seeing the empty tomb and other leaving, she did not leave the tomb. She stood her ground that she would look for the body of Jesus and on finding it, she would take it away. John 20:13-15, 13 They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?” “They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” 14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. 15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?” Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”

Today believers all over the world are willing to shed tears while remembering the persecution and crucifixion of Christ. Yet no one is willing to spare time to think that the Saviour was wounded from the soles of his feet to His head for our sins. Neither do we ponder over our sins and shed tears asking for forgiveness or in repentance. Mary stood their before the tomb because her sins were forgiven. Let us cry asking for mercy to forgives us our sins. This would help rescue our souls.

3. Mary found Jesus and is entrusted with a task: The Lord was powerful enough to come out of a closed tomb. the tomb being open and the presence of the two angels was for the world to believe in the resurrection of Lord Jesus Christ. Lazarus was in a tomb for four days after death. He came out of his tomb on just one call by Lord Jesus Christ. There is nothing which is impossible in the eyes of the Christ. The Saviour calls Mary by her name. She immediately recognized the voice and responds, ‘Teacher‘. The Lord has said that people would recognize my voice. How true are His words!!!

Psalms 34:18, 18 The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
    and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Lord entrusted Mary with a task for her sincerity. John 20:17, 17 Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” In this way Mary Magdalene also became an evangelist.

Let us ask ourselves a question: In between the rat race/ hectic life, how much time do we spend in the presence of the Lord with a broken heart and spirit asking for His strength. Mary recognized the voice of Jesus in just one call. Similarly, Lord Jesus is calling each one of us by our names. Can we hear and recognize His voice in the never ending noise pollution that surrounds us??? Is it possible for you and me to proclaim that He laid life for me and you on the cross for our transgressions, and that He resurrected from he dead on the third day???If not then our faith is a failure, it is on vain.

1 Corinthians 15:17, 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.

Adoni. Jesus | Jesus pictures, Jesus, Christ

Two Demon-Possessed Men

Matthew8:28-34, 28 When he arrived at the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were so violent that no one could pass that way. 29 “What do you want with us, Son of God?” they shouted. “Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?”

30 Some distance from them a large herd of pigs was feeding. 31 The demons begged Jesus, “If you drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs.”

32 He said to them, “Go!” So they came out and went into the pigs, and the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and died in the water. 33 Those tending the pigs ran off, went into the town and reported all this, including what had happened to the demon-possessed men. 34 Then the whole town went out to meet Jesus. And when they saw him, they pleaded with him to leave their region.

In the above verses we can read that when Jesus reached the region of Gadarenes He met two demon possessed men. they lived in tombs. We all know that living men do not live in tombs. The homeless too live and sleep in bus stands, on footpaths, or other such places. The people who go to tombs/graveyards are the keepers of graves or those who are present to pay their respect and prayers to the departed. No one in their right mind would live in tombs.

Though they were humans on the outside, they were devil inside. Since they were demon possessed they had the behaviour of that of a demon. The Bible says they were violent in nature. Due their nature people avoided using that path.

The Son of God was born as man to save our lives, and they persecuted Him and crucified Him on the cross. Yet we can read that the demon proclaim Jesus as the Son of God in Matthew 8:29, “What do you want with us, Son of God?” Realizing that their time is up, the demon sought permission from Jesus to go into a herd of pigs that was feeding nearby. They went into the herd of pigs and the pigs jumped off the cliff into a lake and were drowned. It was not a matter of concern for Jesus as to whose property were the pigs or what was their value. He gave importance and priority to the destruction of removal of the demons and to save the people around who were suffering due to these demons. What happens next is thought provoking. Those who were tending the pigs rushed to the town and told others about what had happened. The townsfolk all together asked Jesus to leave their town and go. The people of Gadarenes rejected the Son of God and the blessings He had in store for them.

We can remember another townsfolk here. Many accepted Jesus as their Saviour after hearing the words of a sinful Samaritan woman. John 4:42, 42 They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.” Even today there is a huge crowd who are perfect impersonation of these two type of people. Accepting and some Rejecting. Blessed are those who accept Jesus as their Saviour. They have eternal life in heaven. the words of Jesus are never false and they all happen without fail.

Today, we can see many people around us. When you look at them it is difficult to recognize that they are demon possessed. Their demonic nature can be seen in their violent and atrocious acts against angelic infants, helpless women and delicate aged women, whom they tear apart and kill them for own pleasure. These people are worse than the wild animals. It is not possible to compare them with the wild animals. We cannot see such cruel acts of the body among animals.

Every human being has a soul. We can only think what would happen to the soul such people. Romans 6:23, 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 2:5, But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.

Romans 6:11-23, 11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. 14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace….

A word of caution to those who fall prey to temporary pleasures of the body, Ecclesiastes 12:7, and the dust returns to the ground it came from,
    and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

It is not possible for the Holy Lord to reside with the Devil. Their place is in Hell.

Isaiah 6:3And they were calling to one another:

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty;
    the whole earth is full of his glory.”

Revelation 4:8, Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:

“‘Holy, holy, holy

is the Lord God Almighty,’

who was, and is, and is to come.”

Let us pray that no man goes to hell and does not let demon reside in him/her.

HEALING OF TWO DEMON POSSESSED MAN - YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v18ie90zvJA

What is the solution when you start doubting in faith?

Faith can be seen. Faith is defined as believing in God… | by Christopher  Toh | The Alternativists archive | Medium

In John 6 we read that John the Baptist was not afraid in speaking up to King Herod and telling him that its not right of him to marry Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife. John the Baptist was fully aware of the consequences of speaking up to the king. Yet John was not afraid or disturbed by it. John was put into prison for this. In the end he was beheaded by deceit. John the Baptist was not an ordinary man. It was next to impossible to kill him so he was killed by deceit. This is what happens to those who stand for that which is right.

Let us ponder a while on Psalms 73. This Psalms was written by Asaph, who was the chief of the musicians of the musician guild of the Temple. He begins the psalms with strong faith that the Lord is good to those who are pure in heart. Then in second verse he speaks that he almost lost his footing and lost his hold. He felt jealous of the wicked since he saw that they did not have any suffering.

The wicked are arrogant, bullies, mockers and lived their lives as such. the Bible calls them people who live without God. They increase in wealth and live a peaceful luxurious life. Asaph is seen asking himself if he lived a holy and righteous life all in vain.

Asaph did not speak his mind to anyone neither did he sow the seed of doubt in the mind of others. He remembers the struggles and tribulations he had to endure. He self consoles himself and does not share the thoughts with anyone else. He think out aloud that if he had shared his thoughts with others then he would have wronged the coming generation.

Yet he yearned to know why is that the righteous suffer and the wicked prosper. Today we too are like Asaph. Haven’t we all also been self doubting???When we are in self doubt we must always remember that we can cause others also to have self doubt in faith. The solution to this Asaph saw was to seek the presence of the Lord and reach to His feet.

Psalms 73:27-28, 27 Those who are far from you will perish;
    you destroy all who are unfaithful to you.
28 But as for me, it is good to be near God.
    I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge;
    I will tell of all your deeds.

When Asaph saw the solution he reprimands himself by accepting that he was foolish. Psalms 73:22,22 I was senseless and ignorant;
    I was a brute beast before you.

And he again proclaims his faith in the Lord Psalms 72:25, 25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you.

Dear children of God it is very normal and natural to have self doubt in our faith. But when in doubt do not turn your steps into the ways of the Satan. Do not abandon the Lord. Like Asaph seek and fall into the presence of the Lord Almighty. In the Old Testament we have many examples of iconic people having doubt in faith. Eg: Elijah, Moses backed before fulfilling Lord’s instructions; Number 20, the people of Israel started to crib against the Lord and asked Moses for water in the desert. Yahweh asked Moses to ask water from the rock. Even after having performed several miracles under Lord’s hand, Moses doubted if the rock would give water. He struck the rock and it gave forth water. But seeing the doubt in Moses, Yahweh says to him that since you had doubt in me you will not set foot in the promised land of Canaan.

Psalms 1:1,Blessed is the one
    who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
    or sit in the company of mockers,

Dear children of God, when we doubt the Father Almighty we cause deep wounds in His heart. Jeremiah 32:27, 27 “I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?

Isaiah 59:1, Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save,
    nor his ear too dull to hear.

Children of God should have a steadfast heart is what the Father desires the most and looks after them till the end of age. He is with us through all generations.

Proverbs 3:12, 12 because the Lord disciplines those he loves,
    as a father the son he delights in
.

Proverbs 25:26, 26 Like a muddied spring or a polluted well
    are the righteous who give way to the wicked.

Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say; I open my lips to speak what is right.

Download free photo of Angry, scream, emotion, mouth, gun - from needpix.com
Download free photo of Angry, scream, emotion, mouth, gun - from needpix.com

Proverbs 8:6, Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say; I open my lips to speak what is right.

1.Say trustworthy things: Today man has a lot of topics to talk and discuss about. There is eloquence and expertise in language. Yet no one pays much attention that what they say is trustworthy or lacks trust. Man has now become faster to speak and slower in listening. Trustworthy or untrustworthy, the words from our mouth do not come in one day. What we make a habit from childhood is what becomes a habit in adult life as well.

James 3:2-12, We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. 11 Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? 12 My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.

Why are the children of God today talking things which are unsuitable and untrustworthy like a sewer line that carries only filth and waste of the world. Yahweh had instructed Jonah to go to Nineveh and warn the people that if they do not turn from their evil ways He would destroy the city into a rumble. Jonah though at first did not follow order, later he went to Nineveh and told the people that if they didn’t repent in the next 40 days their city would be no more. His words made a huge impact and the people of Nineveh from the king to animals went into fasting and repentance. Just as the Lord called Jonah by his name, He is calling each one of us by our names.

In today’s times the words that need our attention and time are those that tell us about our sins and how to repent from them. Listen carefully and follow the words.

Romans 1:16, 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.

We cannot become like St. Paul neither can we bring a change of heart in one lakh people. But we are capable of proclaiming the words of our Lord that HE is the way, the truth and the life.

2.Open your mouth to speak only what is right: In today’s consumerist time, the right word/talk is a joke. Today even children are capable of twisting the truth to suit their interest. Each person should pause and think that from morning till we go to bed how many times do we open our mouths to say the right thing. We can observe five types of tongues around us:

  1. The tongues that likes to lie
  2. The tongue that like to please people/praise
  3. The tongue that speaks rumours
  4. The tongue that speaks only evil/criticise others
  5. The tongue that boast of himself/herself

Proverbs 21:23, 23 Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.

A man’s heart is deeper than an ocean. Be it in a family, among friends or at workplace, he/she is well talented to be able to hide hate, envy, jealousy and dislike for others and all the while keep on a smiling face speaking good to others. Must say that this too children are learning from young ages from their own homes.

Proverbs 15:2, The tongue of the wise adorns knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly.

One of the characteristics of Job that the Lord praises before Satan is that he was righteous and always said and did what is right.

Proverbs 26:20, 20 Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down.

Some people derive evil pleasure by causing a storm by their gossip and rumours. Without verifying what they hear is right or wrong people too spread them like a deadly virus. But what these people fail to realise is the harm that their words cause. Also if someone tries to correct them he/she becomes their enemy.

Proverbs 23:16, 16 my inmost being will rejoice  when your lips speak what is right.

Proverbs 10:13, 13 Wisdom is found on the lips of the discerning, but a rod is for the back of one who has no sense.

Proverbs 26:28, 28 A lying tongue hates those it hurts, and a flattering mouth works ruin.

If you are hit with a rod/ stick the body bears bruises which get healed over a period of time. Yet when hit by words it bruises the soul and heart which cannot be healed.

Psalms 39:1, I said, “I will watch my ways
    and keep my tongue from sin;
I will put a muzzle on my mouth
    while in the presence of the wicked.”

Let us also be able to pray like David.

Psalms 141:3, Set a guard over my mouth, Lord;
    keep watch over the door of my lips.

Dear children of God, a honeybee is a very small insect which can cause immense pain if stung. Yet it produces the sweetest honey. If you transfer the contents of one vessel into another what comes out is what was inside the vessel.

Sirach 5:14-15, 14 Don’t get a reputation for being a gossip, and don’t tell tales that will hurt people. Just as robbers will suffer disgrace, so liars will suffer severe condemnation. 15 Do nothing destructive, whether it seems insignificant or not,..

Children of God, now when you open your mouth to speak, pause and think about what it is that you will be putting out into the world.

Ecclesiastes 7:29, 29 This only have I found:
    God created mankind upright,
    but they have gone in search of many schemes
.

For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.

Proverbs 8:11, 11 For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.

Proverbs 9:10,10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.

Wisdom is something that has spread its wings from one corner of the earth to another. There is no end to it. There is no one who can say that he/she has fully acquired it even after taking a swim in the vast ocean of wisdom. Experiences teach us that material wealth has life of that of a soap bubble. Here now and gone tomorrow. Terrorism. natural disaster, robbery, and things beyond human control can destroy physical wealth. Material wealth is something that lessens if we share it and even finish. Whereas wisdom increases when we share it. One who is wise will try to acquire wisdom along with physical wealth. If you are able to strike a balance between the two then you will benefit both on earth and in heaven since wisdom requires to balance them.

IN the Bible we read about the wisest among the wise King Solomon who had a vision from God in his dream. God asked him what he desires most to have. This is his reply. 1 Kings 3:9, So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?” Whoever desires and seeks wisdom is blessed in abundance by God. Solomon was blessed not only with wisdom but also the riches of the world.

Proverbs 3:14-15, 14 for she is more profitable than silver
    and yields better returns than gold.
15 She is more precious than rubies;
    nothing you desire can compare with her.

Wisdom is received where there is discipline and reprimand, whereas a child left to his/her own ways bring shame to parents. Proverbs 29: 15, 15 A rod and a reprimand impart wisdom, but a child left undisciplined disgraces its mother. If the origin of a river is in the mountains, then if we go in seek of wisdom we would reach the presence of the Lord. Wisdom is light. Those who seek wisdom are loved by God and are easily recognizable by everyone. They shine with the wisdom and light from God.

Ecclesiastes 8:1, Who is like the wise?
    Who knows the explanation of things?
A person’s wisdom brightens their face
    and changes its hard appearance.

1 Timothy 6:10, 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

We can always see that those who have wealth are always under stress of either losing it or getting robbed. They lose sleep over it or don’t have time to sleep in the race to earn more.

Hosea 4:6,     my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge.

“Because you have rejected knowledge,
    I also reject you as my priests;
because you have ignored the law of your God,
    I also will ignore your children.

Let us also seek wisdom to avoid falling into the prey of Devil and run the rat race losing sight of the spirit. Wisdom is the solution to avoid this trap. So dear children of God, what will you seek Rubies or Wisdom????

Mary has chosen what is better

Martha received him into her house. And [her] sister Mary sat at Jesus'  feet and heard his word. But Martha … | Mary of bethany, Jesus pictures,  Pictures of christ

Luke 10:38-40, 38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

Luke 10:42, Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Jesus and His disciples on their way came to a village. A woman named Martha invited them all to her home. Like a good hostess she became busy in providing a good stay to her guests. While her sister Mary, sat down next to Jesus’s and preferred His teachings to helping Martha in house work. Seeing her sitting idle, Martha complains to Jesus about it. It was either due to jealousy or anger on seeing Mary sitting idle and doing nothing to help her. It can also be her anger that had Mary helped her then the work could have been finished earlier and she too could have heard Lord’s teachings. Martha was distracted by many thoughts. Whereas Mary was calm and tranquil and paid full attention to the words of the Lord.

The Bible says that Martha was the one who invited the Lord inside their home. Hence the responsibility for a pleasant stay was more on her. Instead of grumbling and cribbing, Martha got busy in making preparations for her guests. From this we too can learn some valuable lessons:

This happens in normal households too. Being completely engrossed in the materialistic and worldly desires, we put a back seat on prayers, worship, adoration, reading the Bible and hearing sermons. John 6:27,27 Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.” Understanding the stress and various tensions going on in Martha’s mind our Lord Jesus Christ mildly instructs Martha to stop being worried about such things since they are not important.

1 Timothy 6:6-8,But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.

Proverbs 10:22, 22 The blessing of the Lord brings wealth, without painful toil for it.

One house, two sisters. One sister distracted and stressed by the worries of this world. But the Lord praises the sister who listens to the word of God. The food that she receives from the Lord is one that cannot be taken away from her. Think then to what do we give importance???? Are we like Martha, caught in the snares of the material world and trap others also along the way??? Martha had the belief that Jesus would send Mary to help her in getting everything ready. Yet what happened what completely opposite to her expectations. Jesus reprimanded her in a instructive way. Unconditional love and care is very much needed and appreciated. But the Lord here teaches us we should priority and importance to knowing the way to Him rather than the ways of this world. Instead of taking this as mere instruction let us all make efforts to make it a part of our lives.

Acts 6:2 , So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables.

2 Timothy 4:2, Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.

Matthew 4:4, Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.

Christ in the Home of Mary and Martha (Mary and Martha)
https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/media/image/jesus-mary-martha-197ca53?lang=eng

You are the Lord’s Temple

Whenever we see or visit a place of worship it fills our heart and soul with peace and adoration. The place of worship is a holy place. Exodus 3:5, “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” Here we see the Lord instructing Moses to remove his sandals as he was standing on holy grounds. Hence we must remember that the place where there is Lord’s presence, it is a holy place. Lord created man in His own form and breathed life into him. 1 Corinthians 3:16, 16 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?

In the Old Testament, 2 Chronicles 28:22-23, 22 In his time of trouble King Ahaz became even more unfaithful to the Lord. 23 He offered sacrifices to the gods of Damascus, who had defeated him; for he thought, “Since the gods of the kings of Aram have helped them, I will sacrifice to them so they will help me.” But they were his downfall and the downfall of all Israel. King Ahaz closed places of worship, destroyed the things used for worship and created altars for sacrifice in every corner of Jerusalem. He abandoned the living God. He sinned against God. As a punishment for his evil acts he was not buried like other kings. 2 Chronicles 28:27, 27 Ahaz rested with his ancestors and was buried in the city of Jerusalem, but he was not placed in the tombs of the kings of Israel. And Hezekiah his son succeeded him as king.

After him, Hezekiah became king. He did everything that was right and pleased the Lord. He called in all the priests and opened the doors of the temple and had them repaired. Keeping in mind the things that King Hezekiah did in his times let us ponder on few things:

The body of a child of God is the Lord’s temple. If it is so then isn’t it very important that we keep our soul and body pure. We clean and mop our houses or the place we live in daily. But we do not spare time to look inside of us.

1.The temple was repaired: The doors of the temple were opened. Let us open our closed hearts to receive the Lord. There needs no explanation to tell about the conditions of a place that has been kept closed for long. The place would be dilapidated and full of insects, and other crawling creatures. Thus, each one of us should repair our insides and repair what is broken or needs to be mended.

Elijah first repairs the altar for sacrifice at Mount Carmel that had been torn down. Let us also look deep inside ourselves and see what in our souls and mind needs to be repaired to be fit for the Lord to reside. Like broken family life, Sibling relationship, Neighbors, Colleagues and others in general. Renovate all the relationships that need repair.

2.Purify and cleanse the place: 2 Chronicles 29:5, Consecrate yourselves now and consecrate the temple of the Lord, the God of your ancestors. Remove all defilement from the sanctuary. 

Jeremiah 4:14,  ….wash the evil from your heart and be saved. How long will you harbor wicked thoughts?

After repairing the place one need to purify and clean the place of all impurities. Remove low life creatures like evil thoughts and desires from your soul and mind. Put all the waste and rubbish like evil habits into a bin never to be used again. The Lord Himself has said it’s not what you eat that defiles you but the thoughts and desires that defile your soul. Lord Jesus has compared them to a tomb that is pristine but contains rotten body inside.

Matthew 23:25-26, 25 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. 26 Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.

Matthew 23: 27-27, 27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.

Judas is a good example to this. He was spending every living moment with the Lord but his mind was on the money bag they kept. Even though he got several chances to reform he did not repent or ask for forgiveness. We all remember his end. How pitiful????

3. Destroy all that is impure: 2 Chronicles 29:16, 16 The priests went into the sanctuary of the Lord to purify it. They brought out to the courtyard of the Lord’s temple everything unclean that they found in the temple of the Lord. The Levites took it and carried it out to the Kidron Valley. Remember here that we should not wrap all that is unclean i.e. thoughts and desires and keep them aside such that they can come back again. Instead throw them away into a pit, never to return. Keep repeating this over and over again for the process to be complete. The Holy Spirit does not reside in unclean souls. Eg: Samson. He sinned with Delilah against God, and the Holy Spirit left him. If we want our bodies to be the Lord’s temple and for the Holy Spirit to reside in us, then we should live a pure life.

Dear children of God, after repairs and cleaning our bodies and souls, let us hand ourselves into the hands of the Lord. Acts 19:19, 19 A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas. After everything has been cleaned, if we do not keep evil thoughts and desires away from us, they have all the chances to re-enter our minds on the sly. Once we have handed our bodies to the Lord, may it not be defiled by anyone or anything.

Romans 12:1-2, Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

The Speaking Blood of Jesus

Vector Banner With With Handwritten Inscriptions Christ Died.. Royalty Free  Cliparts, Vectors, And Stock Illustration. Image 97189126.

1. Jesus has rescued us: Just as parents rescue a child from the kidnappers by paying a ransom in return, Lord Jesus paid His life as ransom for our souls. When we read and ponder on the Bible there arises a strong desire within the person to come closer to the presence of God. Similarly, just as the kidnappers would threaten the parents over a call, devil within us threatens and tries to draw us away from the Bible by saying that we are not worthy to receive Him. Romans 5:9-10, Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! Use these words as a shield and weapon against your fight with Satan.

The blood on the cross that all that was said has come true. Jesus said that he has saved the mankind with His blood.

2. We are inheriting everlasting life: 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18, 14 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

John 14:3, And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

1 John 2:2, He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.

1 John 4:10, 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Hebrews 9:28, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.

3.We are God’s own: 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, 19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

1 Peter 1:18-19, 18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

When Satan comes closer to us, Jesus comes between us and says, He/ She is mine, so do not step any closer. But it should come not just from Jesus, each one of us should also proclaim it loud. When a person purchases a cloth, it becomes his/ her possession. Do not forget this. Romans 3:24-25, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished—

4.We are the winners: Revelation 12:11, 11 They triumphed over him
    by the blood of the Lamb
    and by the word of their testimony;
they did not love their lives so much
    as to shrink from death.

Jesus made us all winners by shedding His blood on the cross for us in His fight with Satan. Jesus has tattooed each one of us with His blood soaked cross. None of our good deeds or acts can earn us the title of a winner. Jesus defeated the arrogance of Satan by giving up His life for us and winning the battle for each one of us. Dear children of God, we do need to participate in any competition for this. What we do need to do is to proclaim in our hearts that Jesus died for me and He suffered pain and death for me. So repent from your sins.

May the speaking blood of Christ be our refuge, fortress and salvation.

Equal at The Foot of The Cross, Equally in Need of Mercy – John The Baptist  Artworks
https://jtbarts.com/gallery/believers-road-series/equal-at-the-foot-of-the-cross-equally-in-need-of-mercy/

Family: A Creation of GOD

Vector Symbols Family - Insurance Symbol Png PNG Image | Transparent PNG  Free Download on SeekPNG

Genesis 2:21-22, 21 So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

The Father in heaven created the earth and all that is in it. He then created man in His own form. In Genesis 2:20 we read that among all that was on earth no suitable helper was found for Adam. So the Father put Adam into deep sleep and created Eve, female form taking one of Adam’s ribs. Genesis 2:24, 24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh. In this way family was created.

God having created Eve did not place her somewhere in the garden for Adam to be found as a treasure at the end of treasure hunt. Rather she was placed before Adam as his suitable helper. The believers who enter the sacrament of marriage forget that including the Holy Spirit in the union there are three people. The Holy Spirit acts like the cementing force between the two bricks of a family/ marriage. The husbands and wives who get involved in extra marital affairs and adultery bring in the third person as Satan, exiting the Holy Spirit. One should remember that when one places more importance on a person or thing more than their spouse, they are cutting God from their union. Those who separate themselves in married life are in away separating God from their lives. In the garden where there were only two people, how did Eve get isolated??? As a result, Satan who was in wait for the right opportunity to strike, tricked her into eating the forbidden fruit.

It is to be remembered when spouses distance themselves either physically or mentally they are opening gates for the Devil to enter and play havoc in their lives. Those who get ensnared in his net are like fish struggling on a fishing hook. Satan does not enter lives as shown in the media in a black dress/cape, red eyes and horns. He comes on a sly. eg: Amnon. He ravished his own blood, his sister Tamar after being filled with lust. If we look at today’s world the forbidden fruit is everywhere and also easily available at a click.

We are people who praise the institution of marriage and the body of family. But when it comes to actions we are lagging behind. Matthew 1:1-17, talks of the birth of Jesus, who shows an example even in His birth, born to save us sinners from sins. Even today after so much technological advancement, we cannot decide or choose set of parents, siblings and relatives. They are all gifts of God. Think how many children even though have parents and relatives are left in waste bins and at the footsteps of orphanages??? Even in the 21st century there are several families that still think of the girl child as a burden. The Bible teaches us that children are the wealth and gift from God. Today, marriages are dissolved for the most trivial of things. Matthew 19:6, So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

Most often those who enter the sacrament of marriage are on the lookout for the benefits from the union(what do I gain??). Husband and wife are like two wheels of the marriage institution. Both have equal responsibility and roles, yet it is an ignored fact. God created both in His form but with different physical and mental capabilities. Those who are getting married often build castles in dreams. It is very natural. It is essential to live also. But being adamant on fulfilling those dreams in marriage is where it all fails. There is only one person who was born perfect: Jesus. Romans 2:3, So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Love should be pure and unconditional. God desires from each husband-wife to be model parents and raise God fearing children. Genesis 1:28, 28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

Each parent while raising their children with love should also inculcate values of Christian life, how to lead a holy life and teach daughters and sons by being examples of good Husband-wives. Romans 8:8-9, Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ.

Hebrews 13:4, Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.

Psalms 78, Is a must read for all believers.

Family Equals Happiness. But in certain families the members fear the head of the family. Then there are mothers who are worse than the devil himself. The Bible equals God’s love to mother’s love which is pure. What emotions or feeling arise in your mind when you think of your family and relatives, is it fear, hate, or something else???? Do they bring to mind memories of pain or memories of joy and happiness??? Pause and think how much the discord between parents impacts the next generation.

1 Thessalonians 3:5, For this reason, when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith. I was afraid that in some way the tempter had tempted you and that our labors might have been in vain.

Family is like clay in the hands of a potter. He does not throw away the clay that he fails to shape. He wets the clay again and again and reshapes it into desired form. The same way is family life. There maybe mistakes, but try to reshape it back like potter’s clay. What today’s generation does is discard it like waste utensil. Genesis 2:23, 23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones
    and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called ‘woman,’
    for she was taken out of man.”

After the sin the words and feelings changed, Genesis 3:12, 12 The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” Adam lays the mistake fully upon Eve. The body does not get form by merely bones and flesh. It needs skin to cover it and give it full form. It is a symbiotic relationship where each depends in the other. Body gets its full form only when skin covers the flesh and bones. A family functions properly only when husband wife abide by their duties equally. Do not lead to destruction of marriage by distancing from God. Family life was not created on whim and fancy of man. Do not be disrupter of the plan of God. May only death separate what God brought together.

Protect Your Eyes

Pin on Bible - Faith - Scripture

Matthew 6:22, 22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

The above mentioned verse says to protect your eyes from being unhealthy. So how does one protect them?? By putting medicine or evil eye charm?? The answer is NO. A blind person cannot see what lies before him/her. Whereas an able person is able to see what he/she should and should not see and in turn pollutes the mind and the soul. The desire of the eyes takes man to the pits of sin from where its difficult to escape. The first sin too was from the desire of the eyes. Genesis 3:6, When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. When Eve Saw the forbidden fruit she was filled with desire.

David Saw Bathsheba, but seeing her was not sin. Sin was to play with her images in his mind and the actions that played out later. Adultery and murder, he violated two Laws of Moses. He had to face the consequences.

In the book of Joshua we read in 7:21, we read about Achan Saw and took a beautiful robe from Babylonia, two hundred shekels of silver and a bar of gold weighing fifty shekels from enemy camp even after Joshua forbid them as per the Lord’s instructions. Due to this his whole family was destroyed.

Psalms 34:5, Those who look to him are radiant;
    their faces are never covered with shame.
This is the way how we can protect our eyes. What we desire the most to see is what we see in real too. We are drawn towards those images and sights. The sly sin within us drives us towards them. We get milk from the udder of a cow. The nature of mosquito is such that it looks for blood and sucks blood even from the udders. The honeybees search for nectar from flowers and produces honey. Whereas low beings like locusts and other insects destroy them. Among the given example where do we stand???

Matthew 5:28-29, 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.29 If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. The Lord instructs us to gouge out the eye that pollutes the soul. But is man understanding the real meaning and following it?? NO. The Lord does not mean to physically gouge out the eye, instead to learn to control desire and not see that which is sinful.

Lord gave us eyes to see definitely, no doubt about that. He has given us the freedom to chose what to see and what not to. Watching TV is not unhealthy, rather it is the content which is unhealthy. The use of the internet is not harmful but what sites we browse can be harmful. Watching movies is not harmful, but the question is what do you watch-technicolor or blue??? The warning bells start to ring if the content from above said media pollutes the heart and soul through the eye. So then instead of procrastinating and putting it off for another day, lets put the Bible into action and take action. Protect our eyes from all harm.

There is a discipline to all games. If one does not follow them, he/she is thrown out of the game. Think that our eyes are like two teams. The referee is Jesus. On this earth for temporary victories we follow rules and disciplines. Since we cannot see Jesus, we feel He is not watching us. Yet those eyes follow us every second and keep watching our every move. Dear children of God, if you do not want to be thrown out of the paradise in heaven by the judge in heaven, follow His instructions carefully.

1 Samuel 16:7, But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Even the mother that gave birth to us can only see our external appearance, but our Father in heaven who created us can see our heart and our soul. James 1:13-16, 13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters.

Next time when the desire of the eyes tempts you with the unwanted, remember the Lord who wants to SEE you next with Him in heaven fill up with tears. Don’t be the reason for those tears. May the Lord hold us strong in this step.