The Jehovah’s Witnesses are on a massive marketing campaign in our area. Unfortunately, the gospel that they are marketing is a false gospel that cannot save. It is a gospel that undermines the Person of Jesus and the Person of the Holy Spirit.
The JW’s say that Jesus is not God, but a created being. Thus, they deny the Lordship of Christ.
Not only that, they also deny the deity of the Holy Spirit. They teach that the Holy Spirit is simply a force or influence. Therefore, they deny the Trinity that says there is one God made up of three Persons. Christian people, however, hold to the doctrine of the Trinity, because it is taught in the Bible.
To cheer you up (he said tongue-in-cheek), I thought I would tell you the original ending of the Snow White fairy tale. As you know, the new Queen, who is the wicked stepmother, is jealous of snow white’s beauty and orders a huntsman to take Snow White into the deepest woods to be killed. As proof that Snow White is dead, the Queen demands that he return with her lungs and liver. The huntsman takes Snow White into the forest. After raising his knife, he finds himself unable to kill her and leaves her behind alive, convinced that the girl would be eaten by some wild animal. He instead brings the Queen the lungs and liver of a young boar, which is prepared by the cook and eaten by the Queen. Snow White survives, is taken care of by dwarfs and ends up engaged to a prince. The newly engaged couple invite every queen and king to come to the wedding party, including Snow White’s stepmother. At the wedding, to her horror, the stepmother is forced to put on red-hot iron-shoes and dance until she drops to the floor, dead. That’s not quite the ending that Walt Disney gave us.*
King Manasseh is a conundrum. He was the most evil king Judah ever had and yet he was the longest reigning king. (cf. 2 Chronicles 33) In the Old Testament books of Kings and Chronicles every king’s life is summed up either by, “he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord” or “he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.” No matter what the king’s military gains, political accomplishments, feats of bravery or economic successes, in the end it boiled down to this one thing.
I’m sure you know of the couple who woke up one Sunday morning and the wife said to her husband, “Get up or you will be late for church!” Her husband replied, “I really don’t feel like going to church and I don’t like the church people that much anyway. Give me 3 reasons why I should go this morning.” The wife responded, “Number 1: Church is beneficial because your hear God’s Word. Number 2: The people at church actually care for you. 3. And number 3: You’re the pastor!”
It sounds like that church may not be the spiritually healthiest church around – at least not the minister! Of course we should not expect perfect churches because churches are made up of sinful people. We are forgiven, but not sinless. God doesn’t call Christians and churches to perfection, but he does call us to make progress.
The typical leadership conference claims to enable you to be a successful leader with all the added benefits of wealth and prosperity – if you would faithfully follow the “guaranteed-to-work” principles. The Apostle Paul also gave us some leadership principles. The letter of 1 Corinthians in the Bible is not a leadership manual but rather personal correspondence encouraging the church to apply the gospel to every area of their lives. Yet, in the closing few paragraphs in his letter to the Corinthian church (chapter 16) the Apostle Paul makes some personal comments from which we may gain insight into Paul’s priorities and leadership style.
A Swiss company has taken a fascinating and unexpected approach to memorializing our loved ones who have passed. The company will compress and super-heat your loved one’s cremated ashes and turn them into a man-made diamond that can be worn and cherished. It all begins with a chemical process that extracts the carbon from the departed’s ashes. This carbon is then heated to convert it into graphite. The graphite is then heated to as many as 1500 degrees Celsius and subjected to forces as high as 400 000 kg per square inch. Prices begin at R50 000 for a small diamond. This company is capitalizing on our desire to want to remember our loved ones and to keep them with us in some way.
Jesus said that our heart will follow our treasure. In other words, our bank statements will show our priorities. In a similar way, our prayers follow our priorities. What do you pray for? Do you find yourself praying a lot about health, wealth and prosperity? Those are obviously the things you consider the most important.
What should we praying for? Often we struggle in our prayer time because we are not really sure about what we ought to be praying. Sometimes our church prayer meeting can be the most depressing meetings because we pray for the wrong things, or at least we don’t pray for the best things.
A helpful practise is praying the prayers found in the Bible. In Matthew 6:9-15 we have Jesus’ own example of prayer that should serve as our guideline. Jesus said we should pray like this (v9):
What do Kurt Darren, the Soweto Gospel Choir and Mango Groove have in common? They all performed at the second inauguration of Jacob Zuma! On 24 May 2014 thousands of people braved the chilly weather and made their way to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to witness Jacob Zuma’s inauguration. “JZ” was installed, inducted and confirmed as the President of the Republic of South Africa.
The doctrine of the ascension of Christ teaches that Jesus ascended into heaven in bodily form and in heaven he was installed, inducted and confirmed as having the position of all supremacy. Jesus was inaugurated as President of the Universe and given ultimate and all authority and power. The ascension demonstrates that Jesus is the name above every name.
How we engage with our surrounding culture is a very important question for Christians. Culture may simply be defined as how a society thinks and does things. Your city, your suburb and your friends adhere to and embrace certain cultural norms; certain ways of thinking about the world and particular ways doing things. Paul in 1 Corinthians 9:19-27 makes some important points about how we should engage with non-Christians and with the world around us.