Tuesday, December 23, 2008

圣诞节是施爱时候

圣经有一则圣诞故事,令我反复思考人生本就是要这样做的。那就是当牧羊人听了天使报告耶稣诞生的消息后,为了看是否真的,就“急忙去了”。我每年圣诞节讲道都唏嘘地提醒会众“一年过得真快”,不是吗?我们已经听到2009年的脚步声了!加上今年佳节期间突然两个教友离世,就想到若我们要为身边的人做事情就须急忙去做!趁着圣诞节就以此心思勉励读者。

一个著名的心理学家向3千个人问这项问题:“你为着什么而活?”他感到震惊地发现有994人说他们在等候将来、等候结婚、等候孩子长大、等候某某人退休、等候XXX...。等候的同时,他们在计算时间。换句话说,他们在等候“明天”,而却毫无留意地让“今天”溜走!

你认识这样的人吗?他们断断续续被燃起热诚及梦想要使到自己有突破。但他们缓于走第一步,很快的,梦想破灭了,计划告吹了,接下来他们就过着平淡的生活。他们不是缺少决心要做的事情,你会时常听到他们说:“有一天,我要....。”不错是有决心,然而那一天永远都不会到来,因为若你不是为今天而活的话,“明天”,或“有一天”,永远都是很遥远的!

没有人能够永远地对别人说“我爱你”。如果这个世界将在24小时之内结束的话,马上人人就会抢着电话拨给心爱的人表达自己的爱意。这是真的,当你知道快与心爱的人诀别时,如果你还来得及讲的话,你会向他们表达你的爱。

人生往往就是有许多事情被“不必赶紧”的心态连累,导致自己后悔连连。许多人以为还有很多时间,结果当做的事情没机会做,当爱的人已经离他们远去。对于心爱的人,你想为他们做的事情莫推到明天。你打算“明天”才要做的事情,这“明天”永远都不会来到的!

我引用莎士比亚名言作结束:“明天和明天和明天,日继日在这小步里潜入,直到已记录的时间最后音节;我们所有的昨天点着了愚昧人,那灰土一般的死亡之路。熄掉,熄掉,短暂的蜡烛!生命只是一个行走的影子,一个在舞台炫耀及侵蚀他时间,然后不再听到的可怜演员。它(生命)是一个由白痴讲的故事,充满声音和狂怒,表示不重要的事。”圣诞节是一个向人施爱的时候,如果你想到要在今年的圣诞节向任何人施爱的话,就今天行动吧!多一份温情,多一份圣诞气氛。人生,需要赶紧向人表达你的爱。

Shakespeare’s Quote:
Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow


To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Spirit in You

by Smith Wigglesworth

There is a difference between the Spirit being in you and the Spirit being with you. For instance, we are getting light now from outside this building. This is exactly the position of every believer that is not baptized with the Holy Ghost. The Spirit is with every person that is not baptized, and they have light from the outside. But suppose all the light that is coming through the window was inside.

That is exactly what is to be taking place. We have revelation from outside, revelation in many ways by the Spirit, but after He comes inside, it is revelation from inside which will make things outside right.

We are baptizing people in water, remembering that they are put to death, because every believer ought to be covered. Every believer must be put to death in water baptism. The baptism of the Spirit is to be planted deeper until there is not a part of you that is left. There is a manifestation of the power of the new creation by the Holy Spirit right in our mortal bodies.
Where once we were, now He reigns supreme, manifesting the very Christ inside of us, the Holy Ghost fulfilling all things right there.
____________________________________________________________
And I [Jesus] will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever. —JOHN 14:16

PRAYER:
Spirit of God, go with me and immerse me with Thy living water that You might reign in all of me. Amen.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Tis the Season for Porn?


by Mona Charen
Friday, December 19, 2008

I will be called names for writing this column. It always happens. Raise the issue of the pornification of the culture and its fanatical devotees will come gunning for you. If they hope to be intimidating, they've forgotten what delete keys are for.

It's Christmastime and the Fox News Channel, the most conservative of the major media outlets, is running an ad for PajamaGrams, "the only gift guaranteed to get your wife or girlfriend to take her clothes off." The ads feature soft porn images of women disrobing and tossing slips and bras to the floor. The ads run at all times of the day and night. Thus do we usher in the season supposedly devoted to the Prince of Peace and the Festival of Lights.

We all know how far the pornification has gotten. A mainstream movie apparently treats the subject as cute and fun ("Zack and Miri Make a Porno") and it runs at the multiplex next to "Four Christmases" and "Madagascar." Hotels offer pornographic movies and omit the titles from the final bill. Victoria's Secret graces every mall -- and its windows resemble the red light district of Amsterdam. Viagra and its imitators are hawked ceaselessly. Television, music videos, and supermarket checkout magazines contain the kinds of suggestive words and images that would once have been labeled soft porn.

We know this. But what is less well understood is the world of hard-core porn that was once the province of dingy "adults only" stores in the harsher parts of town but is now available to everyone at the click of a mouse.

Last week the Witherspoon Institute convened a conference on pornography at Princeton University and invited scholars from a variety of fields to contribute. The statistics are mind-numbing. Pamela Paul, author of "Pornified," reported that "Americans rent upwards of 800 million pornographic videos and DVDs per year. About one in five rented videos is porn. Men look at pornography online more than they look at any other subject. And 66 percent of 18-34 year old men visit a pornographic site every month."

They are not, Paul and others explained, looking at Playboy magazine-like images of naked women. Instead, they are descending into darker and darker realms where sadism, fetishes, and every imaginable oddity are proffered. Sex and violence are offered together. Women are presented in a degraded -- not to say disgusting -- fashion.

Surely only people with peculiar sexual tastes are drawn to this sort of thing, right? Not exactly. Psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Norman Doidge, author of "The Brain That Changes Itself," noted that pornography use actually changes the brains of consumers. Like other addictions, pornography use breeds tolerance and the need for more intensity to get the desired result. He quoted Tom Wolfe's "I Am Charlotte Simmons," in which a college kid asks casually, "Anybody got porn?" He is told that there are magazines on the third floor. He responds, "I've built up a tolerance to magazines I need videos." Tolerance is the medically correct term, Doidge notes, which is why pornography becomes more and more graphic.

The men (and they are overwhelmingly men) who become hooked on this bilge are often miserable about it. They know that it affects their capacity to love and be loved by real women. As Doidge explained, "Pornographers promise healthy pleasure and a release from sexual tension, but what they often deliver is an addiction, tolerance, and an eventual decrease in pleasure. Paradoxically, the male patients I worked with often craved pornography but didn't like it." Hugh Hefner, the godfather of mainstream porn, apparently does not have normal sex with his many girlfriends. Despite the presence of up to seven comely young women in his bed at a time, he uses porn for sexual satisfaction. Think about that.

Internet pornography truly is, as one researcher put it, "a hidden public health hazard." It isn't cute or funny. Relationships are crashing, women are suffering in silence, and men and boys are becoming entrapped by it. The Witherspoon Institute has done a valuable thing by starting a more public conversation about this cultural poison.

Celebrating Christmas - Right or Wrong?

Q: I would like your thoughts on the Celebration of Christmas. It bothers me in my spirit for I can not find any scriptual basis for it. Is it me or is it the Holy Spirit telling me? What do you believe? Is it strictly a pagan celebration?

A: I can tell you with all sincerity that the celebration of Christmas has no affect whatsoever on my spiritual life in Christ. As long as you do not bow down and worship the Christmas tree I wouldn't consider your celebration of Christmas to be pagan. Spiritual life is not determined by holy days or what we do or don't do at certain times of the year. If you honor the Lord with it then it is fine; if not that is fine too. Since most of the neighbors who don't know Jesus celebrate Christmas, and they have some dim idea that it has something to do with Jesus being born, then use it to your advantage and lead them to a more accurate knowledge of Christ. But don't get fixated on this issue. There are many more important things to concentrate on that DO make a difference in your spiritual life: walking with God, abiding in Christ, seeking the Kingdom. That's the example you'll want to set for your children: what you stand FOR, not what you stand AGAINST.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

How “Newsweek” Twisted the Truth About Same-Sex Marriage

December 17, 2008

In its Dec. 15 cover story, the magazine tried to rewrite the Bible. Don't believe the lies.

If awards were given for shock journalism, Newsweek would win the prize for its provocative Dec. 15 cover story. The headline, hanging above a simple black Bible with a rainbow-striped ribbon sticking out of it, reads: “The Religious Case for Gay Marriage.” With one big kaboom, writer Lisa Miller dropped a literary bomb on 2,000 years of Christian scholarship by suggesting that Jesus would have been OK with Matthew marrying Mark and Luke marrying John.

We are accustomed to mainstream journalists shoving evolution down our throats as if no scientist in the world doubts that theory. But Miller’s diatribe against traditional Christian morality takes cultural brainwashing to a new level. She is a good ventriloquist (she makes the Bible say a lot of things it doesn’t say) but the real dummies are the people swayed by her biased reporting.

In case you haven’t read her treatise (click http://www.newsweek.com/id/172653), Miller bends the truth back and forth until she makes a pretzel out of certain Bible passages—while suggesting that David and Jonathan may have been messing around. There are so many lies per column inch in this story that an editor should have killed it—or at least demanded some objectivity. I guess the folks at Newsweek decided it’s their job to rewrite biblical morality. Here’s how Miller missed it by a mile:

Lie #1: The Bible doesn’t define marriage as one-man/one-woman. Miller insists that heterosexual monogamy can’t be found anywhere in the Bible. She must not have opened to the first page. The first three chapters of Genesis provide the ultimate biblical foundations for marriage and family. God created a man and a woman as perfect and equal partners—and blessed their union, making it the most holy of relationships. It doesn’t get any more fundamental than Adam and Eve.

Lie #2: Old Testament polygamy negates the relevance of biblical monogamy. The fact that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had multiple wives—or that David committed adultery with Bathsheba and then added her to his collection—doesn’t unravel one-man/one-woman marriage. The Bible never says God sanctioned polygamy; it was man’s carnal nature that caused him to dominate women (see Gen. 3:16) and treat them as property. Biblical patriarchs were not perfect—and their multiple wives were evidence of their sin, not proof that God rewrote the rules so they could have a harem. It was not until Jesus Christ broke the power of sin that men found the grace to build faithful, monogamous marriages.

Lie #3: Lesbianism is not called a sin in the Bible. While Miller reluctantly admits that the Old Testament condemns sex between men “in a handful of passages,” she claims that sex between women isn’t addressed. Wrong again! The apostle Paul clearly denounces lesbianism in Romans 1:26, where he calls homosexuality between women “unnatural” (or “against nature”) as well as a “degrading passion” (NASB). Miller gets an F in New Testament 101 for skipping over that obvious verse.

Lie #4: Old Testament laws against homosexuality don’t apply now. The book of Leviticus calls homosexuality “a detestable act” (20:13) and an “abomination” (18:22)—a strong term that means “a vile, shameful, or detestable action, condition or habit.” Yet Miller insists that since Jewish ceremonial laws don’t apply today, then sexual standards in the Torah can be discarded. In fact, she calls the passages in Leviticus “throwaway lines.” Big mistake. God’s moral law is tied directly to His unchangeable character, while ceremonial law was linked to the old covenant—which He set aside when He enacted a new covenant in Christ. The coming of Jesus did not make stealing, murder or adultery lesser sins. Neither did His coming legitimize homosexual practice.

Lie #5: New Testament condemnation of homosexual behavior is misunderstood. Citing a common argument used by some gay-affirming churches, Miller suggests that the apostle Paul’s condemnation of gay sex in Romans 1 only applies to really despicable Roman emperors and other sexual predators who practiced male rape or multiple forms of perversion. In other words, if two men just want to make love—with no violence involved—then their erotic expression is perfectly OK.

Where does Miller get permission to make this bizarre argument? Certainly not from the biblical text, which says it as plain as day: “In the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error” (Rom. 1:26). This passage affirms that any form of sexual contact between men—violent or not—violates God’s law.

Lie #6: The Bible never excludes people from God’s blessings. Miller quotes liberal theologian Walter Brueggemann, who insists that the Bible “is bent toward inclusiveness.” This is where she really makes big blunders in her reasoning. She asks: Would a God of love send anyone to hell? Since Jesus came to liberate sinners, and since the church is called to evangelize people from all racial and economic groups, surely He will shower His love on people of all sexual persuasions, right?

This is where Universalists, inclusionists and gay-affirming churches miss the message of the gospel. They love to talk about God’s forgiveness, but they deny the necessity of repentance. They refuse to see that God made the road to salvation narrow. And they ignore the reality that eternal punishment awaits all who refuse to come to the Son of God on His terms.

Paul the apostle was quite exclusive when he talked about sexuality. “Do not be deceived,” he wrote in 1 Corinthians 6:9, “neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.” No one can explain away that passage. The God of the Bible draws clear lines. His mercy is great to those who come to Him in humility, with a willingness to change; but for those who arrogantly insist on living in their sin, only judgment awaits.

Many naive people—including biblically illiterate Christians—will be deceived by Newsweek’s gay-marriage arguments. Let’s sort through the lies and choose God’s truth over the depravity of modern American culture.

J. Lee Grady is editor of Charisma.

年輕人未來挑戰嚴峻

最近幾年全世界看到無論政治經濟社會等出現洶湧波濤。許多政權變天,因為年輕人執意為了要改變而改變。許多經濟失衡,因為年輕人不想按部就班達到成就,辨別務實想一步登天。同時年輕人使用未來錢,刷卡前沒先三思,被判入窮藉的人數飆升。許多社會問題亮紅燈,因為年輕人的道德崩潰。天城市孩子變得寂寞孤僻,其一因素乃大多數父母在外幹活而疏於照顧孩子。

互聯網部落格和網上交流的誕生與普及化,其中乃因年輕人這種寂寞孤僻所衍生的。部落格其實也是老爸媽以前的日記或週記,不同的是以前的是保密的,而現在的是公開的。這說明年輕人有個心態希望把他們的內心世界告訴全世界的人。

我兩個兒子雖然已經在社會謀職了,但我們做父母仍然關心他們的進展。長子把他的壓力發洩在部落格上,我作老爸的經常都讀它,必要時即回應指導。幼子則發洩在電吉打上,他在教會音樂服侍上遇到挫折,我經常帶他單獨出外用餐開導他。我希望我們做父母的,多多關注孩子的內心世界。

多一份愛心,少一份對峙。看看巴基斯坦籍恐怖份子襲擊孟買酒店,著名建築物和火車站十個地點。這批年輕人要製造“印度911事件”,據孟買州政府調查他們計劃殺5千人。試想想7年前的911事件,當年他們這群人只是13到23歲之間,坐在電視機面前看襲擊鏡頭能懂得甚麼?可是若干年後他們被招集打聖戰,這個鏡頭,包括其他如巴基斯坦伊斯蘭堡萬豪酒店恐怖襲擊的,或許就被重複地用作負面激勵教材了。他們都經過突擊隊式的特訓,可見恐怖組織對世界威脅是不容忽視的!

在西亞和中東回教國和極權回教組織裡,女性的地位很卑賤,父親把兒子送去打聖戰,母親往往被隱瞞。我遺憾許多年輕人的大好前途給人利用,使他們誤入歧途。激進的回教信仰,小孩子開始被灌輸對西方人和猶太人的憎恨。恨,永遠不能讓世界和平,反而造成雙方無止境對峙。

“恨”的相反是“愛”。你要一棵樹有怎樣的形狀,乘嫩時就必須彎折它。可憐那些無辜的小孩從小被人灌輸憎恨,以及似是而非的價值觀,對他們不公平。要這個世界和平,就必須從小灌輸他們“愛”。上帝設立家庭,父母一起對兒女的管教是不可推卸責任的。父尊母卑的封建家庭架構乃不合時代矣!

世界不同領域包括政治和經濟不斷轉型,有跡象顯示它趨向動蕩時代,因此年輕人未來挑戰嚴峻。父母有年輕一代孩子的,多少也會擔心下一代日子不好過。21世紀人們城市化,已經不像以前清茶淡飯就可以度日。世界競爭勢必越來越激烈,父母必須從小關注孩子的壓力,不妨鑽進他們的鞋子看事情。為他們解困的同時也授予正確生存之道,不走捷徑,務實做人。不然,若人們在辛苦的日子只訴之暴力或罪行,損人利己的話,世界動蕩將變本加厲。

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Turkey for Christmas 火鸡圣诞

自3年前开始,烤火鸡在马来西亚越来越昂贵了!我不晓得真正的原因。惯常的价钱是每公斤12令吉左右。这只火鸡是几个星期前买的。当时优惠价是每公斤26.90令吉。这只鸟重4.216公斤,价钱是113.40令吉。现在最少每公斤29.90令吉。若在西餐馆买烤好的,每只是290。00令吉。淑芳烤火鸡很多年了。我们用煤气烤炉。我们24日傍晚在新生命圣所有自备餐聚会。

Roasting turkey is getting more expensive in Malaysia since 3 years ago! I don't know the actual reason as to why. It used to be around RM12.00 per kg. This turkey was bought a few weeks ago. The offer price was RM26.90 per kg. The bird weighs 4.216 kg which costs me RM113.40. Now the price is RM29.90 per kg and above. if you buy a roasted bird from a western restaurant, it costs about RM290.00 per bird. Cecilia has been roasting turkeys for years. We use a gas-fire oven. On 24th evening, we will have a pot bless gathering at New Life Sanctuary.

Why Jesus Cursed the Fig Tree

by Chip Brogden (www.theschoolofchrist.org)

The most interesting thing about the word "hypocrite" is the only person in the New Testament who ever uses the word is our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In that 23rd chapter of Matthew it is Jesus who says seven times, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites."

There is something very unique about the Lord Jesus, something about His character that tends to be overlooked by many people, and I would like to call your attention to it right at the outset of this message. The Lord Jesus is acutely aware of, and very much opposed to, unreality. He is especially attuned to any pretentiousness; to play-acting.

You know how one time He was hungry, and saw a fig tree off in the distance that had leaves on it. So He walked over to the tree and looked for figs. But there were no figs. And right then and there He cursed that fig tree. He cursed it. "May no man eat fruit from you again, forever." And that tree died (see Mk. 11:13-20). Get a picture in your head of what is happening here.

You know I never understood that story? I always felt sorry for the poor fig tree; especially when the Bible says it was not the season for figs. It sounds unreasonable, doesn't it? Why would Jesus expect to find fruit on the fig tree when it wasn't the season for figs?

It wasn't until many years later when I came across a little book called "Bible Manners and Customs" that I understood why Jesus cursed the fig tree. You see in that part of the world, and with that kind of fig tree, the leaves and the fruit appear at the same time. So Jesus is hungry and it isn't the season for figs, yet here is this fig tree full of leaves. Probably the only fig tree that had leaves. Now out of all the other trees this one gets the attention of Jesus. That's why He picks that one to go looking for fruit. Its leaves are advertising: "Hey look at me! I've got leaves! I've got fruit!" So Jesus says, "It isn't the season for figs, but I see your leaves, so I'm coming over to check you out." And that was too bad for the fig tree, because pretentiousness is the sort of thing that gets a very strong response from the Lord Jesus. He is like that. He will not just let it pass. That tree was a hypocritical fig tree. Lots of leaves. An outward show. But it was all pretense. It was a charade. It provided hungry people with false hope! Do you see now why He cursed it? That is the kind of thing that Jesus will not stand for.

Now the tragedy of this story is what the unfruitful fig tree represents. If you study the parables of Jesus then you know that the unfruitful fig tree represents Israel - particularly Jerusalem - supposedly the "city of the great King," waving palm branches and crying out "Hosanna!" - but the whole thing is a farce. Those same people shouting, "Hosanna!" would be shouting, "Crucify Him!" just a few days later. Lots of leaves: there's the Temple, the priesthood, the teachers of the Law, the Torah. Lots of leaves, but no fruit. Jesus said the Kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation who will bring forth the fruit thereof.

When the Lord looks on this religious system we have created, with all its denominations and church buildings, how do you think He views it? Do you think He is altogether satisfied with things the way they are?

Monday, December 15, 2008

中文《神召之声》-第29期 Chinese AG Voice - The 29th Issue

我是《神召之声》的主编。2008年11月第29期已经出版了。请在以下网址阅读电子版。也拜托你向你的亲友推荐。

I am the Chief Editor of The Chinese AG Voice. The Nov 2008 29th Issue was published. Please read the e-book in the following URL. Do recommend it to your contacts.

http://www.ag.org.my/cld.htm

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Planets surround moon in unusual night sky

The moon shines over the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai, India, Monday, Dec. 1, 2008. Soldiers removed the remaining bodies from the shattered Taj Mahal hotel on Monday, searching each room in the labyrinthine building and defusing booby-traps and bombs left by the gunmen who killed 172 people during three days of terror. The planets Venus, top left, and Jupiter, top right, came in close proximity with the moon as seen from Earth Monday. In reality, Venus is almost 100 million miles way and Jupiter nearly 550 million miles from our planet. The moon is 252,000 miles away. The exact combination of planets and the moon in the right place to appear together, even when they aren't high enough in the evening sky to be appreciated, won't happen again until 2052.
(AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

A rare positioning of planets Venus (top left) and Jupiter (top right) and the crescent moon of the Earth provides a 'smiley' effect that captivated Asia Monday night Dec. 2, 2008.
(AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

A crescent moon and the planets Jupiter (bottom) and Venus are seen in the sky over Buenos Aires December 1, 2008. Astronomers and skygazers across the world are keeping watch on Monday night for a rare astronomical phenomenon as two of the brightest naked-eye planets, Venus and Jupiter, join a thin crescent moon to create a brief "unhappy face" in the sky.
REUTERS/Enrique Marcarian (ARGENTINA)

Netanya moon : A picture taken from the Israeli coastal city of Netanya shows a crescent moon forming a triangle with Venus (top-R) and Jupiter (L). Astronomers refer to this rare phenomenon as an "occultation," taken from the Latin word occultare, which means "to conceal.
" A (AFP/Jack Guez)

The brightest planets, Venus and Jupiter, close in on each other and the moon nearby in the night sky Nov. 30, 2008 in Honolulu, Hawaii. This event, often referred to as conjunction by astronomers, happens only once every few years. The next conjunction will come in 2012.
(Photo and caption submitted by Wang Yunai)

A crescent moon is seen with the planet Jupiter in the sky over Amman December 1, 2008. Astronomers and skygazers across the world are keeping watch on Monday night for a rare astronomical phenomenon as two of the brightest naked-eye planets, Venus and Jupiter, join a thin crescent moon to create a brief "unhappy face" in the sky. On Sunday night, the two planets appeared closest together in an event known as "Planetary Conjunction".
REUTERS/Ali Jarekji (JORDAN)

A crescent moon is seen below the planets Jupiter (L) and Venus (R) in the sky over Amman December 1, 2008. Astronomers and skygazers across the world are keeping watch on Monday night for a rare astronomical phenomenon as two of the brightest naked-eye planets, Venus and Jupiter, join a thin crescent moon to create a brief "unhappy face" in the sky. On Sunday night, the two planets appeared closest together in an event known as "Planetary Conjunction".
REUTERS/Ali Jarekji (JORDAN)

A crescent moon (R) is seen with the planet Jupiter in the sky over Amman December 1, 2008. Astronomers and skygazers across the world are keeping watch on Monday night for a rare astronomical phenomenon as two of the brightest naked-eye planets, Venus and Jupiter, join a thin crescent moon to create a brief "unhappy face" in the sky. On Sunday night, Venus and Jupiter appeared closest together in an event known as "Planetary Conjunction".
REUTERS/Ali Jarekji (JORDAN)

A crescent moon is seen below Jupiter (top) and Venus in Kathmandu December 1, 2008.
REUTERS/Gopal Chitrakar (NEPAL)

Sun Nov 30, 9:33 PM ET
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A crescent moon (R) is seen below Jupiter (top) and Venus in Los Angeles November 30, 2008.
REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni (UNITED STATES)

A passenger jet passes by a crescent moon at Sheoraphuli, India, in this Oct. 22, 2008 photo, as the first Indian spacecraft heads towards the moon.
(Photo and caption submitted by Rajib Singha)

Malaysia says PM's residence costs 1.68 million dollars a year

Source: http://news.my.msn.com/regional/article.aspx?cp-documentid=1833883#toolbar
Agence France-Presse - 12/11/2008 9:45 AM GMT

Malaysia's government drew flak Thursday after admitting it spent 1.68 million dollars a year on the prime minister's sprawling residence in the administrative capital Putrajaya.

Responding to an opposition query, Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said 6.01 million ringgit (1.68 million dollars) was paid annually to state-linked developer Putrajaya Holdings for the residence's rental and upkeep.

It costs another 3.4 million ringgit a year to maintain the deputy premier's residence.

Known as the the Seri Perdana complex, the premier's sprawling residence was built by former leader Mahathir Mohamad, who in 1999 was its first tenant.

The buildings are spread over 16 hectares in the centre of Putrajaya which lies south of Kuala Lumpur, comprising three blocks which include a reception area, banquet facilities and a residence.

Abdullah lives in the complex with his wife, daughter and son-in-law and their children.

"It is wasteful to spend so much money on renting the prime minister's house when the country is facing such tough times," said opposition parliamentarian Hatta Ramli from the Islamic party PAS.

"Even though the money is going back to a government-linked company, this should not be the case as the government should really own the building the prime minister occupies," he told AFP.

"What happens if the prime minister somehow gets evicted?"

Chief minister of opposition-controlled Penang state Lim Guan Eng questioned the payment of rent to Putrajaya Holdings.

"We can understand paying maintenance, but rental does not make sense," he told AFP.

"This also begs the question as to who are the directors of the company and who gets all the profit made by the company."

Putrajaya Holding's main shareholders are national energy firm Petronas, a state-owned trust fund and government investment arm Khazanah.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas with Fran


It is a Fund-raising Project for the Church building fund

New Life Sanctuary, Kelana Jaya, Petaling Jaya, celebrates Christmas with a Concert with Francessca Peter as the main performer. She was an award-winning local artist. Hear her powerful yet sweet melodic voice as she belts out classic favourites.

Youths from NLS will perform a drama entitled "The Miracle of Christmas". At present more than 100 tables were already booked.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

建造在盘石上的房子总不倒塌

淡江国际山庄日前山崩,埋没了14所独立洋房,夺走4条人命。每逢发生山崩我会想到耶稣讲关于建造房子的比喻:“所以凡听见我这话就去行的,好比一个聪明人,把房子盖在磐石上。雨淋、水冲、风吹、撞着那房子,房子总不倒塌,因为根基立在磐石上。凡听见我这话不去行的,好比一个无知的人,把房子盖在沙土上。雨淋、水冲、风吹,撞着那房子,房子就倒塌了,并且倒塌得很大。”(马太福音7:24-27)。

我们华人习惯讲到可倚靠的东西时常用“靠山”来形容的,还有我们有一句成语说“稳如泰山”。但基督徒的圣经里头,让人看到山会挪移,也会摇动。所以地上没有一样事物是稳固的。

许多人喜欢住在山区,因为那里风凉水冷,风景幽美,并且居高临下,往往令人感到心旷神怡。可是在山坡建造房子,即使立根基是符合工程标准的,但条件是千万不要发生山崩的事。

当耶稣讲聪明人把房子盖在盘石上时,他是指真正够大够稳固的盘石。耶稣乃指他本身就是那块盘石。他以人所明白的建筑工程知识来形容人生,好让我们晓得建造人生是一件大事情,所以马虎不得。为什么山区的房子会崩塌?清楚土质是非常重要的。房子的底下是否稳固的盘石?它抑或是假象的“盘石”,即说它只是硬土?所以,聪明人的相反是无知的人,后者把房子盖在沙土上。人生之所以会崩塌,因为我们太马虎做事情,我们只在乎看得见的外表粉刷工程,却不在乎看不见的里头根基。

耶稣说:“所以凡听见我这话就去行的,好比一个聪明人;凡听见我这话不去行的,好比一个无知的人。”“聪明人”应该被翻译为“智慧人”,而“无知的人”则应该被翻译为“愚拙人”更加贴切。“我这话”是指耶稣在马太福音第5到7章的教训。其实圣经的话语于教训、督责、使人归正、教导人学义、都是有益的。

天地万物都会废去,但上帝的话语一点一划都不会废去。圣经流传了几千年,这些年来它给人指引了人生的道路,安慰了伤心的灵魂,医治了人的身心灵,及鼓励了挫折的志气等。

人生谁没有问题?这些问题如同雨淋、水冲、风吹、撞着人生。我们会仍然稳固地耸立,抑或会倒塌下来,关键乃在于我们的根基是什么。是盘石抑或沙土?根基立在盘石上就是以耶稣作为我们的救主以及主人。倘若我们的根基立在耶稣基督这块稳固的盘石上的话,这整个世界可以坍塌下来,但我们仍然是不被动摇的。这说明什么呢?就是基督徒在地上有平安,在天上有永生。

Monday, December 8, 2008

梳邦市信心城教会中文圣诞聚会

梳邦市USJ 1 信心城教会中文会众在7日傍晚5时30分提早举行圣诞节。叶晨星博士率领她的团队为会众唱诗歌及讲道。
The Chinese congregation of USJ 1 Faith City Church held an early Christmas service on the 7th at 5.30pm. Dr. Yap Chen Sing led her team and ministered in songs and the Word of God.

叶晨星博士将会众讲道 Dr. Yap speaks to the audience






为罗艳饯行

来自中国的罗艳一年前就读于马来西亚圣经学院。她是由驻在云南省的孟保罗牧师所推荐的。她在12月14日将回云南省服侍主了。我和淑芳,及王胜明牧师一家人在12月7日中午在蒲种为她饯行。
Chinese national Luo Yan came to study in Bible College of Malaysia one year ago. She was recommended by Pastor Robert Menzies who is based in Yunnan Province. She is returning to Yunnan on 14th Dec and will serve the Lord there. Me and wife, together with Pastor Heng and wife were giving her a farewell lunch at Puchong Puteri.

淑芳(左)与罗艳 Cecilia (L) and Luo Yan


淡江國際山莊土崩-檢討山區屋業發展

皇家警察空中照片

12月6日凌晨淡江國際山莊土崩,導致14棟洋房被掩埋,4死1失蹤,15傷者送院,警方疏散約3千附近居民。獨立式洋房外面看起來有雄偉壯觀,殊不知卻是立在土質鬆軟的山坡地帶。馬上想到耶穌說的“兩種人蓋房子”的比喻,其中一個人把房子蓋在沙土上,雨琳水沖風吹,房子就倒塌了。馬來西亞處於熱帶,雨量大。但一旦發生類似意外,誰該負責?往往我們只聽到官員把問題歸咎於上帝,說是天災。

就看1993年高峰塔倒塌導致48人死亡事件,政府當時矢言禁止山坡建住宅區。然而15年來國人仍然到處可見山坡住宅區林立,諷刺的乃此次的國際山莊就離開高峰塔1公里地點而已。

2006年高峰塔塌樓案件法庭裁決,地方市議廳無需承擔責任。這項判決即等於給市議廳不必承擔疏忽責任的防護權。法庭裁決說因另一項山坡發展房屋,以致水從後面流到高峰塔地底下。而被宣佈為危樓的另兩棟高峰塔,裁決也即等於市議廳不必對買者承擔責任,欲哭無淚!國際山莊和其前一日白沙羅高原的土崩,也是因過度屋業發展導致,所以上述判例,也沒有誰須承擔責任了。

淡江一帶的確是風景幽美的人間天堂,四面山林圍繞。這也因此在幾年前鬧出有發展商對動物園虎視眈眈這塊肥肉的新聞,好在人民力量的壓力下使這項計劃不成功,可嘆人類的貪婪險些連飛禽走獸被逼邊沿化了!

山區的住宅區,能夠賣得更高的價格,所以背後即是花花碌碌的鈔票作怪,許多發展商都會爭著打這個如意算盤。但我國的屋業,鮮少提供售後服務的。國人會看到一些外國房子排列在高高山坡上產生羨慕感,有些地方甚至房子多到一覽無邊。山坡的屋業,必須售後仍然須有專業的保養維修的公司提供服務。那些國家能辦得到,除了責任性的售後服務外,也因著它們先天性氣候優點。適宜建造山區樓房的國家不是沒有像我國舨舨的傾盆大雨,就是常年雨量少。我國的傾盆大雨因泥土排泄水量速度慢而侵蝕泥土。加上我國的屋業,售後的環境管理多是交給市議廳的。因此若要求市議廳承擔一點責任乃不為過吧?而州政府肆意批准發展計劃更難辭其咎!

如果對管理山區屋業沒有專門的管理知識和責任感的話,我國的立法者就必須禁止一切山區屋業發展。希望政府檢討時下輕易批准這類屋業外,也嚴格確保大城市如吉隆坡,八打靈,檳城和新山等不會過度被發展。這些地方已經人口稠密,交通擁擠和空氣汙染了。所以希望聯邦和州政府開放邀請非政府組織的人士參與重整及監督發展的大藍圖。

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Jack Black, Jesus, and Prop 8


by Frank Pastore
Thursday, December 04, 2008

This week, the creative minds behind “Hairspray,” composer Marc Shaiman and director Adam Shankman, opened their “Prop 8: The Musical” with an all-star studded cast that includes Jack Black, Neil Patrick Harris and John C. Reilly at Sacramento Community College.

You can watch it here: http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/c0cf508ff8/prop-8-the-musical-starring-jack-black-john-c-reilly-and-many-more-from-fod-team-jack-black-craig-robinson-john-c-reilly-and-rashida-jones

The point of the production is to shame the voting public for passing Proposition 8 a month ago, which simply defined marriage in California as between a man and a woman. The musical is clearly intended to spark more “public outrage.” No doubt, more protests, more storming of Mormon temples and Catholic churches and more vandalism against churches will follow. Beyond that, it is likely that more church services will be crashed by same-sex activists—all in the name of “tolerance,” “love,” and “mutual understanding.”

The strategy behind this shaming-of-the-public production is simple: lampoon the supporters of the constitutional amendment into embarrassment so that the next time same-sex marriage shows up on the ballot, they’ll do the “loving thing,” and support it rather than reject it, which is the only one true path to social penance, cultural redemption and liberal forgiveness—at least in the mind of the same-sex marriage crowd.

What’s new about all this is their overt play, albeit erroneously, of the Jesus card. Yes, even the “No on 8” crowd can “get religion.”

At the pivotal moment of the musical, Jesus (played by Jack Black) confronts the “Yes on 8” supporters for their belief that homosexuality is an “abomination,” and lifts a shrimp cocktail to them and says that Leviticus also says eating shellfish likewise is an “abomination.”

He then goes on to say the Bible also teaches that you can “stone your wife,” or “sell your daughter into slavery,” as evidence that you really can’t trust everything the Bible teaches. Or, as in the language of that oft-repeated favorite locution from our skeptical friends, “you can’t take the Bible literally.”
So much for the doctrine of inerrancy. I guess the Word made flesh really didn’t mean everything He said in the Word. Maybe we should put our trust in a non-believer to divine the “good” words from the “bad” words, huh?

Before leaving, Jesus even goes on to affirm, of all things, the “separation of church and state.”

Now these are delightful challenges! As a teacher, I wish more students had the courage to ask them.

Here are a few answers:
The whole point of Leviticus and Deuteronomy was to teach Israel how to separate and become distinct from all they had learned while in Egyptian captivity. They are books of contrast and separation, distinctions and differences. For example, Egypt worshipped death, Israel was called to worship life. The Ten Commandments of Exodus 20 are instructions of how to become different. Holy items shall be “sanctified”—literally, “set apart”—that is, distinct from non-holy items. Jews themselves, and later Christians, are likewise to be “set apart” for God.

Men and women were created different and distinct, therefore their roles, behavior and even dress should not be confused as the Egyptians did (and many pagan cultures still do).

For example, Deuteronomy 22:11 says, “You shall not wear a material mixed of wool and linen together.” The whole reason being “don’t confuse plant and animal products, they’re different categories, remember that.” There’s painful detail throughout the Bible pounding this meta-theme home.

God created different “kinds” of things, and we must honor His distinctions and not confuse them, for it is an “abomination,” exactly the very thing advocates for same-sex marriage are guilty of.

What about the shellfish? If you read the context of Leviticus 11:9-12, it too is talking about honoring distinctions. God is simply saying, in my paraphrase, “Eat fish, don’t eat bugs. Fish have fins and swim, bugs have legs and crawl. Even if you find things in the water that aren’t crawling, if they have legs, they can crawl—so they’re bugs, don’t eat them. Fish, good; sea-bugs, bad. Honor the distinction.”
The Bible’s statements prohibiting homosexual behavior are rooted in this need to recognize and honor the distinctions—here between men and women.

As far as the eating of shrimp, Jesus permits the eating of shellfish under what he says in Matthew 15:11: “It is not what enters into the mouth that defiles the man, but what proceeds out of the mouth, this defiles the man.” And Paul emphasized in Romans 14:14 that it’s all about personal conscience anyway.

As far as the “stoning your wife” and “selling your daughter into slavery” claims go, they too have a simple answer. In 1400 B.C., before the law was given to Moses by the hand of God at Mt. Sinai, no nation had any moral code that prohibited a man from killing his wife, wives, or children for any reason. Pagans sacrificed their children to Baal and Moloch, Israel would not. Pagans could kill their families, Israel would not. So, the Old Testament improved the extant moral order by requiring men to go before the elders before any child was to be stoned (Deuteronomy 21:19). And, in all of the rabbinic writings to my knowledge there’s not one instance of the elders ever approving of a single stoning of a child.

Lastly, when you read the full context of Exodus 21:7-11, the “selling your daughter into slavery” slur, it too was an improvement over the ancient moral order. My paraphrase again, “If you sell your daughter off to a man and he becomes unhappy with her, he must give you a chance to redeem her and buy her back, he may not sell her off to foreigners. And if the man bought her for his son, she must not be treated as a slave, but as a daughter.” Like all the other teachings in the Old Testament, this was a big improvement over what was going on among the peoples around Israel.

Come to think of it, it still is—we still have “honor killings” of wayward daughters and wives today throughout the Muslim world.
Like Michelle Malkin, I too am waiting for the “other” Prop 8 musical to come out, as she says, “the one with angry activists storming restaurants and Mormon temples, hectoring elderly people over their signs, and hounding donors large and small until they pay off their tormentors in the name of tolerance. Anyone?”

I’ll bet the “Hairspray” boys won’t be doing that one any time soon.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

20/20 Hindsight: What I Hope We Learned From the Lakeland Revival

Looking back at what happened in Lakeland, I wonder if we can agree on what went wrong.

It has been four months since Canadian evangelist Todd Bentley fled the scene of Florida’s Lakeland Revival amid rumors of a moral failure. When Bentley vanished in August, the crowds thinned, God TV stopped broadcasting services, the meetings eventually shut down and Bentley’s worship leader took the popular music of the revival on the road.

Meanwhile, many people were left scratching their heads. Some were angry with Bentley for leaving his wife. Some were confused because their faith had been energized during the six-month-long experience. Many charismatic ministry leaders defended the revival, saying that it was never supposed to focus on a man. Others blamed Bentley’s critics for the revival’s demise.

"Ministers of the gospel need both godly character and powerful anointing. Why did we ever settle for the idea that we should have one without the other."

Late last week the board of directors of Fresh Fire Ministries—which Bentley resigned from in August—released a lengthy statement to update its supporters on Bentley’s condition. The letter confirmed that (1) Bentley is “resolute in his intentions” to divorce his wife, Shonnah—and that “he admits to being 100% responsible for the divorce”; (2) his relationship with his former intern is ongoing; (3) the evangelist drank inappropriately during the revival; and (4) he has yet to enter into a clear system of accountability with Christian leaders who have offered to help him.

The six-page statement, which defended the impact of the Lakeland Revival, did not excuse Bentley’s behavior. “We believe there are currently no biblical grounds for Todd to leave his wife and children,” the board members said. They added: “The nature of the present relationship between Todd and his former staff member is that of adultery.”

Lakeland was a painful chapter in the history of our movement, not just because such a highly visible preacher made such embarrassing moral choices but also because Christian leaders never agreed on what went wrong or how it could have been avoided. Now that the accident scene is in our rearview mirror, I wonder if we can agree on at least some points. Here are some lessons I hope we have learned by now:

Lesson #1: Accountability. Accountability. Accountability. I wish just saying the word over and over could impress the concept in our minds. Leaders must live according to biblical standards. Period. Bentley’s board admitted in their statement that after the Lakeland meetings went into full swing, Bentley developed troubling behavior patterns. That would have been the right time for someone with apostolic courage to demand that Bentley step down for a season until he got his spiritual life in order. If we really want New Testament miracles and New Testament impact, maybe we should embrace New Testament discipline.

Lesson #2: The one-man show is over. New Testament ministry is about teams, not hotshots. Paul shared the workload with Barnabas, Phoebe, Clement, Priscilla, Aquilla and many others. And he protested when people tried to make him out to be a god. When will we learn that the superstar syndrome actually thwarts genuine revival because it causes audiences to focus on man instead of Jesus?

I know there are those who insist that Bentley didn’t want people to notice him. But if that’s true, why did he cover himself with tattoos a few years ago, when he was in the ministry? I’m not a stickler about tattoos, but in Bentley’s case they definitely should have been a red flag. Anyone who craves that much attention needs counseling before they get on a stage.

Lesson #3: Chill out. The Fresh Fire board, in last week’s statement, admitted that one of their biggest mistakes was allowing Bentley’s meetings to go on week after week without a break. Bentley tried to preach continually without rest, and as a result he burned out. Most likely his staff burned out too. No Sabbath, no time for family, no time to unwind. No human being can keep such a schedule without imploding.

Isn’t this also true for the American church scene? Our rule has become, “The show must go on.” We are driven to keep the seats full and the money coming in. The more we work, the more we grow—so we have to work harder to maintain the growth and pay the bills. The pace becomes more and more frantic until the engines fail and the wheels fall off. Building God’s way requires patience, pacing, regular maintenance and plenty of downtime to receive His ongoing guidance and grace.

Lesson #4: Character is more important than anointing. Some revival groupies disagree with me on this. They’re so desperate for a display of miracles that they’ll take a zap from someone who has questionable morals or shoddy values. They don’t mind who lays hands on them as long as they are thrown to the floor while the crowd cheers.

I love revival too, and I’ve spent time on the floor soaking in God’s presence. I love the anointing. But please: Can you show me in the Word of God that character is not required of leaders? The Bible says imposters who work miracles will spend eternity in hell. Working miracles does not win anyone brownie points with God. Ministers of the gospel need both godly character and powerful anointing. Why did we ever settle for the idea that we should have one without the other?

Lesson #5: Lay hands on no man quickly. Many of us are still grieving over the fact that a large number of charismatic leaders stood on a stage in Lakeland in June and publicly commissioned Bentley. Some praised him for his integrity and humility while others prophesied about the nations he will evangelize and the increased spiritual influence he will wield. Today those proclamations (readily available on YouTube) seem hollow and embarrassing.

Some who stood on that stage insist that God told them to do a public commissioning service. One recently hinted to me that it was a mistake. I’ll let them sort that out. Personally, it saddens me that our movement has been tarnished by what appears to be a serious lack of discernment. In the crazy world of independent ministries—which already lack proper accountability—leaders should take the time to investigate a preacher before commending him on international television.

Lesson #6: You can’t have revival without repentance. The word “revival” is thrown around loosely these days. If a few people fall on the floor, get goose bumps or see gold dust, we are ready to christen it a revival and put it on television as soon as possible. After all, if large crowds gather, it must be God!

I’m tired of imitations. History shows that genuine revival is more than a bunch of blessed bodies in a pile. We need more than angel feathers, emotional euphoria and limp pep talks about getting high on Jesus. We need the strong Word of God that convicts hearts, demands repentance, slays sin and has the power to produce converts who will withstand temptation.

With Lakeland behind us, let’s celebrate the testimonies that came out of it, enjoy the songs we sang during it and pray for the restoration of the man God used to start it. Then, let’s learn from our mistakes and press on to better things.

J. Lee Grady is editor of Charisma.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

孟買恐襲看年輕人


巴基斯坦籍恐怖份子襲擊孟買酒店,著名建築物和火車站十個地點,造成174人死,239人傷,610人獲救,震撼整世界。我所關注的是恐怖份子是一批年輕人,年齡在20到30歲之間。一個澳洲遊客說“槍手看起來好像小男孩”。

這批年輕人要製造“印度911事件”,據孟買州政府調查他們計劃殺5千人。試想想7年前的911事件,當年他們這群人只是13到23歲之間,坐在電視機面前看襲擊鏡頭能懂得甚麼?可是若干年後他們被招集打聖戰,這個鏡頭,包括其他如巴基斯坦伊斯蘭堡萬豪酒店恐怖襲擊的,或許就被重複地用作負面激勵教材了。他們都經過突擊隊式的特訓,可見恐怖組織對世界威脅是不容忽視的!

在回教國和極權回教組織裡,女性的地位很卑微,若父親把兒子送去打聖戰,母親往往被隱瞞。我遺憾許多年輕人的大好前途給人利用,使他們誤入歧途。激進的回教信仰,小孩子開始被灌輸對西方人和猶太人的憎恨。

恨,永遠不能讓世界和平,因為恐怖份子沒法完全消滅西方人和猶太人。而恐怖襲擊引發的西方人反擊,他們也不可能完全消滅恐怖份子。兩方的對峙反而犧牲了許多無辜的平民。

“恨”的相反是“愛”。你要一棵樹有怎樣的形狀,乘嫩時就必須彎折它。可憐無辜的小孩從小被人灌輸憎恨,以及似是而非的價值觀,對他們不公平。打聖戰為自己的信仰殺人並不“聖”,而這次襲擊孟買的恐怖份子屬“虔誠軍”組織,這般胡亂濫殺無辜的舉動並不“虔誠”。

要這個世界和平,就必須從小灌輸他們愛。上帝設立家庭,父親對兒女的管教是不可推卸責任的,但也不該把母親摒棄在外。情況反而是母愛能夠使孩子更溫柔,受父母共同給予正面影響的孩子會更愛人。

最近幾年全世界看到無論政治經濟社會等出現與以前一貫的情形有著顯著的改變。許多政權變天,因為年輕人執意為了要改變而改變。許多經濟失衡,因為年輕人使用未來錢。許多社會問題亮紅燈,因為年輕人的道德崩潰。這一切都是因為“世界進步”所帶來的後遺症。世界演進步伐太快,人們被拖著鼻子走。今天城市人大多數都是父母在外幹活的,所以我們的孩子變得寂寞孤僻。

互聯網部落格和網上交流的誕生和普及化,其中乃拜年輕人這種寂寞孤僻所託。部落格其實也是日記或週記,不同的是以前時代的是保密的,而現在的是公開的。這說明年輕人有個心態希望把他們的內心世界告訴全世界的人。

我兩個兒子雖然已經在社會謀職了,但我們做父母仍然關心他們的進展。長子把他的壓力發洩在部落格上,我作老爸的經常都讀它,並回應給他指導。幼子則發洩在電吉打上,他在教會音樂服侍上遇到挫折,我經常帶他單獨出外用餐開導他。我希望我們做父母的,多多關注孩子的內心世界。多一份愛心,少一份對峙。

Thailand Unrest

Bangkok Airport was closed for many days now. What do the Thais want? They were known to be peaceful people. Mind you they did not involve themselves in the two World War.

It seems they wanted to bring monarchy back. Or they were manipulated by a hidden man. Could that be Thaksin, the former PM? Not surprising, as he is a billionaire.

Well Thais are simple-minded people. Their education system was low standard though they produced many university graduates.

Hey, look at Malaysia. We are run by a bunch of leaders who have lost directions. Our education is domestic-focus instead of international-focus. Lately, there had been verbal war going on among BN component parties. Our DPM Najib wanted the component parties to resolve matters under BN Channel.

What is BN Channel? Well, all parties cannot debate differences openly. They must debate under closed-door. Ooup, that was how MCA and MIC died in the previous Gen Election. Because the Chinese and Indians did not hear the voice of MCA and MIC leaders when their rights were deprived. Under closed door meetings, UMNO will always shut the mouths of other component parties.

UMNO will never change. Look at Mukhriz, the son of Mahathir, how he opined that vernacular schools be closed for unity's sake. Mukhriz, you are wrong, the Chinese and Indians are guaranteed of their mother-tongue education by out Constitution. The Chinese and Indians will remember your words. Be sure that during the next Gen. Election, they will bring out your racial remarks.

So MCA president Ong Tee Keat will not compromise now. He must oppose race-cards played by UMNO openly. Or else MCA will soon be irrelevant. Mind you, under Samy Vellu, MIC is already irrelevant!

Neither is the Pakatan Rakyat doing well. The 3 parties are sleeping on the same bed and each having different dreams.

Now PKR chairman Wan Azizah, wife of Anwar, wanted to bring back monarchy. Well, King Solomaon said there are no new things under the sun. History will always rotate in repetition. So don't be surprise that very soon we will see emperors (Huang Di) surface in China.

Is It OK for Christians to Practice Yoga?

Recently some Islamic Groups in Malaysia wanted to ban Muslims from practicing Yoga. The following article was taken from NECF website.

At the end there are two images which are meant to be for humorous purpose only.

Meditating on Yoga
Source: National Evangelical Christian Fellowship (NECF)
http://www.necf.org.my/newsmaster.cfm?&menuid=12&action=view&retrieveid=1036

On Nov. 22, the National Fatwa Council (NFC) issued an edict that yoga is haram (prohibited) for Muslims. Earlier on, Prof. Zakaria Stapa of the Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia’s Islamic Studies Centre had remarked that practising yoga could deviate Muslims from their faith. His statement drew negative reactions from yoga instructors and students.

The president of the Malaysia Yoga Society lamented the misunderstanding and said that Malaysian yoga was different from the practices in India which incorporated religion and spirituality. It was “more of a treatment modality” (TheSun, 23/11/08)

Many view yoga as a form of exercise to strengthen and improve their muscles and breathing as well as to relax their mind, thus keeping them good health. But why has it become such a big issue to certain religious groups? The bone of contention seems to be the meditation techniques – or “curbing the mind” as some call it. While it has been argued that these techniques are scientifically proven to improve one’s health and have nothing to do with religion, yogis – practitioners of yoga who have reached an advanced spiritual state – think otherwise. They are adamant that yoga, regardless of how it is branded, is Hinduism.

Within the Christian community, yoga too has been a controversial subject – some have reservations while others see nothing wrong as long as those who practise do not deviate from Christian faith. Rev. Dr Herman Shastri, the General Secretary of the Malaysian Council of Churches, opined that it was all right so long as Christians do not pray “to other Gods while practising yoga” (The Star, 31/10/08). However, some Christians disagree, and like the yogis, they firmly believe that yoga cannot be separated from its Hindu roots even if one takes away the spiritual underpinning and practises only the physical exercises.

Still others hold that yoga can surely be redeemed for God’s good purposes because our God is a redemptive God. A growing interest in Christian Yoga was thus developed, particularly in America, replacing Hindu spirituality and philosophy with Christian spirituality and theories. Such concept, nonetheless, did not go down well with certain groups.

The American Hindu Foundation, in its response to an article “Stretching for Jesus” featured in Time magazine (25 Aug. 2005), commented, “Hindu Americans are rightfully outraged by the brazen appropriation of one of their vibrant faith’s most lasting contributions to this country’s health, well-being and popular culture.” It called Christian Yoga an act of “intellectual property theft” and accused evangelical Christians of proselytising and converting Hindus in the guise of Christianised Hindu practices. Some Christians who formerly practised yoga think that Christian Yoga is an oxymoron.

In actual fact, Christian yoga, according to Dr Ng Kam Weng, director of Kairos Research Centre, fails to understand how yoga meditative exercises (especially the breathing techniques and the mantra chanting) work to disrupt our mental function. Change of name does not change the process, he says.

Yoga is an ancient practice that originated from India. The goal of the practitioners is to achieve oneness or union with the Absolute through physical and mental disciplines. Dr Ng emphasises that one must keep in mind the historical connection between yoga and Hinduism and how such practices are traditionally integrated with its own philosophy and spiritual worldview. The physical exercises are merely initial steps to prepare oneself to become more attuned to a higher reality.

Perhaps the question for many Christians would be: Is it possible to separate the physical exercise from the spiritual aspect?

“In theory it is possible for Christians to separate the physical exercises from the spiritual exercises. I have in mind Christians who just want to try out some postures to stretch their muscles when they exercise at home. Others who are more serious may try out *Pilates. However, those who take yoga seriously will soon find that yoga is offered as a package deal. Meditation is the main ingredient to achieve spiritual enlightenment. In other words, serious yoga instructors do not separate the form from the substance,” Dr Ng explains.

He also clarifies the difference between Christian and yoga meditation. The former carries a positive function as meditating on the glory of God and His manifold works inspire the Christian to praise and love God; it is relationship and content oriented. The latter, in contrast, has a negative function; it deliberately empties the mind of rational thought processes and eventually leads to the dissolution of ego or the inner self. Dr Ng cautions that Christians should be wary of such exercises in dissociating the mind from its normal function since this may leave one vulnerable to external spiritual influence.

Some may have reportedly found peace with yoga meditation, but others have developed mental dysfunction, e.g. hallucination, outburst of uncontrollable energies through the body and emotional trauma. According to renowned psychoanalyst Carl Jung, “The deliberately-induced psychotic state, which in certain unstable individuals might easily lead to a real psychosis, is a danger that needs to be taken very seriously indeed.”

Dr Ng urges Christians, who are practising yoga or who are thinking of taking it up, to seriously consider their motive for doing so. If it is merely for physical exercises, there are other alternatives; if it is for meditation, we need to seriously consider the basis of yoga meditation as it is traditionally practised.

“Why would I hitch my Christian faith to a process which might render myself vulnerable to influence from deceptive spiritual forces?” he asks.

While yoga practices are culturally not wrong, Christians are encouraged to exercise spiritual discernment in making their choices.



*Pilates (pĭ-lä’tēz) – A system of exercises that promote the strengthening of the body, often using specialised equipment. Named after Joseph Pilates (1880–1967), German-born American physical fitness instructor who developed the system. – The American Heritage® Dictionary

_______________________________

For your reading:

Yoga and the Body of Christ (bk) by Dave Hunt (http://canaanland.com.my/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=14804)

"Non-Muslims have a right to comment on fatwas" & "Fatwa Council Bans Yoga: Non-Muslims told not to comment" by Ng Kam Weng (http://libertysentinel.wordpress.com/)

There are apparently two ways of performing this type of yoga:
1. India - Very hard. Years of practice required.
2. Australia - Very Easy. No practice required.

The Good Samaritan


by Jackie Gingrich Cushman
Sunday, November 30, 2008

This past Sunday, I listened twice to the parable of the Good Samaritan. The first time was during a morning church service with my family in Atlanta; the second time was during an afternoon funeral in Carrollton, the west Georgia town where I grew up.

The parable tells of a man who was attacked, beaten, stripped and left for dead by a band of robbers on the road between Jerusalem and Jericho. As he lay on the side of the road, two religious men passed by him –- a priest and a Levite. They were men people considered close to God. But they did not stop and help the man lying by the side of the road. Possibly they had to be somewhere, possibly they were en route to special duties that only they could perform, possibly they were afraid – the parable does not say. But, whatever the reason, they did not stop. They passed him without helping him.

Later, a Samaritan was walking on the opposite side of the road. Samaritans were thought to be religiously inferior. But the Samaritan crossed over to the man and cared for him. He then took him to an inn and gave the innkeeper money to continue caring for the man until he was better.

The parable ends with Jesus asking which of these men was a better neighbor to the man who was robbed.

The answer might appear to be obvious – the man who stopped what he was doing and took care of the man who was hurt. But certainly the priest and the Levite thought that they were doing the right thing in God’s eyes. After all, they were men of God. The question leads us to ask ourselves: Would we stop and help, or hurry on our way to something we deemed more important?

The funeral I attended was for Tracy Stallings, the father of a childhood friend. He was also a community leader (having served for decades in public office), and a fixture in the church where I grew up. In my mind, he was part of the firm foundation of our community. He was a good man, who started with nothing, worked his way up with the help of others, and made it his life’s mission to help those around him. He embodied the core beliefs of America: faith, family, patriotism, freedom, opportunity, hard work and charity.

The parable reflected his actions toward others through his life: one person helping another person. This parable does not ask us to help millions, just the one person we see in need of assistance in our life’s path. The transfer of assistance, support and hope from one human being to another is the core of the story. It is the human touch, the interaction between people, which makes it so important and real to us today.

During the funeral, I looked around the church in the town I had left a quarter century before. I felt as though I was in a time warp. Many of the people were the same, just a bit grayer. The people of the church provided me with comfort and a sense of continuity.

The parable and the trip to my hometown remind me of what makes life magical: people. In a world tormented by materialism, our focus needs to change, from the material to the personal. Creating value for people should be our goal – touching human lives specifically and individually. This creation of value leads to personal satisfaction and then monetary rewards.

Instead, many have reversed the cycle, focusing on the monetary reward as the way to get personal satisfaction, and trying to buy additional value rather than build additional value. We have made the mistake of taking the outcome of the process too seriously – like the priest and the Levite – focusing on the material rewards rather than the process of living. Instead, we should focus on the process of creating value of others.

When life seems to speed up – we need to slow down, and refocus on people rather than events, and value rather than money. Creating value for people is what life is all about.

As I drove back from Carrollton to my home in Atlanta, I thought about Tracy Stallings, and the importance of pillars in our community and cried. He took time on his journey through life to stop, and help others in need.

Friday, November 28, 2008

张茂松牧师信息-11月19日晚上

一條江河

以西结书47:1-12
“47:1 他帶我回到殿門、見殿的門檻下有水往東流出.(原來殿面朝東)這水從檻下、由殿的右邊、在祭壇的南邊往下流。
47:2 他帶我出北門、又領我從外邊轉到朝東的外門、見水從右邊流出。
47:3 他手拿準繩往東出去的時候、量了一千肘、使我逿過水、水到踝子骨。
47:4 他又量了一千肘、使我逿過水、水就到膝。再量了一千肘、使我逿過水、水便到腰。
47:5 又量了一千肘、水便成了河、使我不能逿過.因為水勢漲起、成為可洑的水、不可逿的河。
47:6 他對我說、人子阿、你看見了甚麼.他就帶我回到河邊。
47:7 我回到河邊的時候、見在河這邊、與那邊的岸上、有極多的樹木。
47:8 他對我說、這水往東方流去、必下到亞拉巴、直到海.所發出來的水、必流入鹽海、使水變甜。〔原文作得醫治下同〕
47:9 這河水所到之處、凡滋生的動物、都必生活、並且因這流來的水、必有極多的魚、海水也變甜了.這河水所到之處、百物都必生活。
47:10 必有漁夫站在河邊.從隱基底直到隱以革蓮、都作晒〔或作張〕網之處.那魚各從其類、好像大海的魚甚多。
47:11 只是泥濘之地、與窪濕之處.不得治好、必為鹽地。
47:12 在河這邊、與那邊的岸上、必生長各類的樹木.其果可作食物、葉子不枯乾、果子不斷絕.每月必結新果子、因為這水是從聖所流出來的.樹上的果子、必作食物、葉子乃為治病。”

一、日日更新

-江河的水不斷的往前流
-大江東去不回頭
-任何的大山、岩石都不能阻擋他的前進
-聖靈的工作也是不斷的前進
-我們的生命也是不斷的往前進
-教會的事奉也是不斷的往前進
-人的習慣是守舊的,不喜歡改變的

二、愈流愈深


-江河愈來愈深
-經歷愈來愈深,恩賜愈來愈強!!
-感覺愈來愈敏銳
-我們的生命也要
-愈來愈成熟、愈來愈美麗、愈來愈強壯!!

三、生機蓬勃

-江河流過之處都會充滿生機
-每個名城都會有一條大河
-聖靈的江河流過之處都會產生蓬勃的生機
-小孩的生命是充滿生機的,老人的生命是漸漸凋零
-春天大地充滿生機,秋天漸漸凋零

四、苦水變甜

-所有死海之水會改變!!
-生命中的苦水變甜!!
-以色列人、路得、拿俄米……
-上帝要賜福給他的兒女
-環境改變之前,他要改變人的心境
-心中充滿甜水,四週的苦水就會變成甜水

多一點的讚美、少一點的批評
多一點的感恩、少一點的怨言
多一點的禱告、少一點的籌劃
多一點的安息、少一點的焦慮

五、豐收的生命


-屬天的、屬地的、看得見的及看不見的
-可以結出果子來
-生命的果實、事奉的果實、工作的果實
-一個非常美麗的生命
-一個大有果效的事奉
-一個職場成功的人生
-上帝的祝福包含了工作及職場的祝福

张茂松牧师信息-11月20日早上

如鷹展翅

以赛亚书40:29-31
“40:29 疲乏的、他賜能力.軟弱的、他加力量.
40:30 就是少年人也要疲乏困倦、強壯的也必全然跌倒.
40:31 但那等候耶和華的、必從新得力、他們必如鷹展翅上騰、他們奔跑卻不困倦、行走卻不疲乏。”

詩103:5
“他用美物、使你所願的得以知足、以致你如鷹返老還童。”

我們是神國的飛鷹

老鷹與雞的故事

老鷹與雞的分別
1 兩者的窩不一樣
2 兩者的渴望不一樣
3 兩者的眼光不一樣
4 兩者的人生不一樣
5 兩者的高度不一樣
6 兩者的能力不一樣
7 兩者的勇氣不一樣
8 兩者的智慧不一樣
9 兩者的價值不一樣
10兩者的信心不一樣

一 展翅上騰


1 相信自己是一隻「神國的飛鷹」
2 脫離雞群加人飛鷹的行列
3 學習老鷹說話、作事、思想、態度
4 學習使用上帝給我們的翅膀
信心及禱告的翅膀、翅膀愈用愈有力!!
5 張開異象的眼睛,看著未來的愿景!!
6 投身在聖靈的暖流之中!讓祂帶領我們飛向美麗的天空

二 返老還童

-老鷹的經歷
-最困難的是除去老舊的包袱及習慣
-改文章非常困難,但是必需改,要一次又一次的改,如同我們寫短訊總改了又改
-謙卑的承認自己什麼都沒有,忘記過去!!
-改變我們的習慣: 說話、禱告、事奉、禱告
-改變我們的眼光、態度、形像操練信心、改變禱告的習慣,需要立志、需要操練

胡民气牧师信息-11月18日早上第二堂

婚姻与家庭(一)

一、婚姻之关系


A. 是神所设立

婚姻不是父母催促,不是人有我也有

创2:18:“耶和华 神说、那人独居不好、我要为他造一个配偶帮助他。”
-独居不好
人需要配偶,神造男造女

中国人说没结婚就还没有成人,到老还拿红包

在还未吃分别善恶果子,只有善,没有恶
吃了之后,善恶不分-善中有恶,恶中有善

神给亚当一个女人,他可以拒绝,但他却很兴奋地接受
当犯罪后,他怪神给他夏娃

负责任,神给恩典

创2:21-25“耶和华 神使他沉睡、他就睡了.于是取下他的一条肋骨、又把肉合起来。 耶和华 神就用那人身上所取的肋骨、造成一个女人、领他到那人跟前。 那人说、这是我骨中的骨、肉中的肉、可以称他为女人、因为他是从男人身上取出来的。 因此、人要离开父母、与妻子连合、二人成为一体。 当时夫妻二人、赤身露体、并不羞耻。”

曾经为了对方牺牲,但你忘记了
婚礼时什么问题都“I do”

B. 是人类关系之始

兄弟如手足,妻子是衣服
圣经:人类的开始是夫妻,不是父母,不是兄弟

人要离开父母,与妻子连合,二人成为一体

所罗门王审案,两个母亲争孩子。王命令把孩子分开
生命可以分开吗?夫妻是神赐的生命,不可分开

教会和基督可以分开吗?
我们和主合而为一

创1:27:“神就照着自己的形像造人、乃是照着他的形像造男造女。”
男女就是成人
当你对另一半不好,你心里也不好过

创1:18:“耶和华 神说、那人独居不好、我要为他造一个配偶帮助他。”

创2:20-25:“那人便给一切牲畜、和空中飞鸟、野地走兽都起了名.只是那人没有遇见配偶帮助他。 耶和华 神使他沉睡、他就睡了.于是取下他的一条肋骨、又把肉合起来。 耶和华 神就用那人身上所取的肋骨、造成一个女人、领他到那人跟前。 那人说、这是我骨中的骨、肉中的肉、可以称他为女人、因为他是从男人身上取出来的。 因此、人要离开父母、与妻子连合、二人成为一体。 当时夫妻二人、赤身露体、并不羞耻。”

美国女人争取人权,她们说:“男人可以脱衣服,我们也可以脱。”因此就坦胸露乳地走在街头。

夫妻要坦诚,没有隐藏,没有羞耻

C. 是不可分开的一体

台湾的家庭,家具黏颜色标签,等候有一天分开各自搬走
一结婚就准备分开,后门打得很大

有些人,一半在一起不能灵修

妻子在教会事奉,回家看丈夫的黑脸

胡民气牧师信息-11月19日早上两堂,继18日早上第二堂

婚姻与家庭(二)

二、婚姻之目的与意义

A. 反映神的形象
神就是爱

创1:26-27“26 神说:“我们要照着我们的形象,按着我们的样式造人;使他们管理海里的鱼、空中的鸟、地上的牲畜,以及全地,和地上所有爬行的生物!” 27于是, 神照着自己的形象创造人;就是照着他的形象创造了人;他所创造的有男有女。”

约一4:7-21“7亲爱的,我们应当彼此相爱,因为爱是从 神那里来的。凡是爱人的,都是从 神生的,并且认识 神。 8不爱人的,就不认识 神,因为 神就是爱。 9 神差遣他的独生子到世上来,要使我们借着他而活; 神的爱就在我们中间显明了。 10不是我们爱 神,而是 神爱我们,差遣他的儿子为我们的罪作了赎罪祭,这就是爱了。 11亲爱的, 神既然这样爱我们,我们也应当彼此相爱。 12从来没有人见过 神,我们若彼此相爱, 神就住在我们里面,他的爱也在我们里面得到成全了。 13 神把他的灵赐给我们,我们就知道我们是住在他里面,他也住在我们里面。 14父差遣子作世人的救主,这是我们见过的,并且现在作见证。 15凡承认耶稣是 神的儿子的, 神就住在他里面,他也住在 神里面。 16 神对我们的爱,我们已经明白了,而且相信了。 神就是爱;住在爱里面的,就住在 神里面, 神也住在他里面。 17这样,爱在我们里面就得到成全,使我们在审判的日子,可以坦然无惧。因为他怎样,我们在这世上也怎样。 18爱里没有惧怕,完全的爱可以把惧怕驱除,因为惧怕含有刑罚,惧怕的人在爱里还没有完全。 19我们爱,因为 神先爱我们。 20人若说“我爱 神”,却恨他的弟兄,就是说谎的。不爱看得见的弟兄,就不能爱看不见的 神。 21爱 神的,也应当爱弟兄,这就是我们从 神领受的命令。”

神就是爱,爱就是神。家里有神就有爱。家里有爱,没有神,这爱是假的。家里有神,没有爱,这神是假的。

B. 两人成为一人

C. 延续生命

现在人都不生了,宁愿养宠物不养人。
人对人失去信心,对爱没有期待。

爱是为了叫对方得益处。

三、婚姻之角色


A. 丈夫是头

弗5:22-23“22你们作妻子的,要顺服自己的丈夫,好像顺服主一样, 23因为丈夫是妻子的头,好像基督是教会的头;基督又是教会全体的救主。”

B. 妻子为助手

创2:18“18耶和华 神说:“那人独居不好,我要为他造个和他相配的帮手。””

女人不是弱者,若是弱者就不能帮助。
头必须是头,助手必须是助手。

父亲不可骂妻子没有好好管教孩子。中国人说:“子不教,父之过。”
许多妻子在别的女人面前讲自己丈夫的坏话。你让你的丈夫抬不起头来。

C. 彼此同心建立

传4:9,12“9二人胜过一人,因为他们一起的劳碌有美好的酬报。12有人能制伏孤身一人,如果有二人就挡得住他。三股合成的绳子,不容易扯断。”

D. 婆媳关系

中国人以前场发生婆婆折磨媳妇,我们只有婆媳冲突,没有婆婿冲突,怎解?
因为女婿是照顾自己女儿的,所以必须对他好一点;但媳妇却是外来跟自己抢儿子的。

得1:8-18“8拿俄米对两个媳妇说:“去吧,你们还是各自回娘家吧。愿耶和华恩待你们,像你们善待已死的人和我一样。 9愿耶和华使你们各人有机会再嫁(“有机会再嫁”原文作“在丈夫家里”),找到归宿。”跟着亲吻她们,她们就发声大哭, 10说:“不,我们一定要跟你一起回到你同胞那里去。” 11拿俄米说:“我女儿啊,你们回去吧,为什么要跟我去呢?我肚子里还有儿子作你们的丈夫吗? 12走吧,我女儿啊,你们回去吧,因为我太老,不能嫁人了,就算我说我还有希望今天晚上有个丈夫,又生儿子, 13你们可以等到他们长大吗?你们可以为他们守节而不嫁人吗?不行,我女儿啊,我为你们非常难过,因为耶和华伸手对付我。” 14她们又放声大哭。俄耳巴就和婆婆吻别,路得却舍不得离开拿俄米。 15拿俄米说:“你看,你嫂嫂已经回到她同胞和她的神那里去了。你也跟着嫂嫂回去吧。” 16路得说:“请不要逼我离开你回去,不跟从你。你到哪里去,我也要到哪里去;你在哪里过夜,我也要在哪里过夜;你的同胞就是我的同胞,你的 神就是我的 神; 17你死在哪里,我也要死在哪里,葬在哪里。除非死亡把你我分离;如果我离开你,愿耶和华加倍惩罚我。” 18拿俄米看路得坚决要跟她走,就不再多费唇舌了。”

四、婚姻之危机

A. 自我中心-各自发展

太12:25“25耶稣知道他们的心思,就对他们说:“如果一个国家自相纷争,就必定荒凉;一城一家自相纷争,必站立不住。”

摩3:3“3二人如果没有约定,怎会同行呢?”

腓2:2“2就应当有同样的思想,同样的爱心,要心志相同,思想一致,使我充满喜乐。”

男人要爱妻子,女人要顺服丈夫。
中国人:“相敬如宾。”
同一句话若语气不同,意思就不同。

B. 缺乏沟通

箴12:18-19“18有人说话不慎,好像利刀刺人,智慧人的舌头却能医治人。 19说实话的嘴唇,永远坚立;撒谎的舌头,眨眼间消失。”

中国人时常贬低自己的儿女,这是要不得的谦卑。

创3:1-6“3在耶和华 神所造野地所有的活物中,蛇是最狡猾的。蛇对女人说:“ 神真的说过,你们不可吃园中任何树上的果子吗?” 2女人对蛇说:“园中树上的果子,我们都可以吃; 3只有园中那棵树上的果子, 神曾经说过:‘你们不可吃,也不可摸,免得你们死。’” 4蛇对女人说:“你们决不会死; 5因为 神知道你们吃那果子的时候,你们的眼睛就开了;你们会像 神一样,能知道善恶。” 6于是,女人见那棵树的果子好作食物,又悦人的眼目,而且讨人喜爱,能使人有智慧,就摘下果子来吃了;又给了和她在一起的丈夫,他也吃了。”

亚当缺乏与夏娃沟通,她就与蛇沟通。

注重语气。
先欣赏她,然后给她分析。

沟通不单在语言,也在身体接触,所以神给我们性。

要给人做错事的空间。当你做错事,你希望别人给你机会。

C. 不协调的性生活

箴5:15-19“15你要喝自己池中的水,饮自己井里的活水。 16你的泉源怎么可以外溢?你的河水怎么可以流在街上? 17它们要独归你一人所有,不要让外人与你共享。 18要使你的泉源蒙福,要喜悦你年轻时所娶的妻子。 19她像可爱的母鹿,人所喜悦的母山羊,愿她的乳房时常使你满足,愿她的爱情常常使你恋慕。”

申24:5“5如果人娶了新妇,不可从军出征。”

五、痛苦的婚姻

A. 忍
B.无味
C.伪装

六、幸福的家庭


A. 合神心意

徒13:22“22废去扫罗之后,又为他们兴起大卫作王,并且为他作证说:‘我找到耶西的儿子大卫,他是合我心意的人,必遵行我的一切旨意。’”

举例:你拦阻你的孩子顺服神的旨意。

B. 彼此有良好关系

C. 委身于婚约

胡民气牧师信息-11月18日早上第一堂

能活着真好

昨天上午8时30分上车,过关卡发觉行李不见了
连圣经和全部讲章不见了

讲发生在棉兰的车祸

一、能活着是神的恩典

路12:20-无知的财主
“神却对他说,无知的人哪,今夜必要你的灵魂。你所预备的,要归谁呢?”

雅4:14-15-不知明天如何
“其实明天如何,你们还不知道。你们的生命是甚么呢?你们原来是一片云雾,出现少时就不见了。 你们只当说,主若愿意,我们就可以活着,也可以作这事,或作那事。”

二、经历主所应许的平安

约14:27-主留下的平安
“我留下平安给你们,我将我的平安赐给你们。我所赐的,不像世人所赐的。你们心里不要忧愁,也不要胆怯。”

腓4:6-7-出人意外的平安
“应当一无挂虑,只要凡事借着祷告、祈求、和感谢,将你们所要的告诉神。 神所赐出人意外的平安,必在基督耶稣里,保守你们的心怀意念。”

三、极大的安慰

林前15:58-不摇动,劳苦不徒然
“所以我亲爱的弟兄们,你们务要坚固不可摇动,常常竭力多作主工,因为知道你们的劳苦,在主里面不是徒然的。”


四、神信实的供应

诗23-
“23:1〔大卫的诗。〕耶和华是我的牧者.我必不至缺乏。
23:2他使我躺卧在青草地上、领我在可安歇的水边。
23:3他使我的灵魂苏醒、为自己的名引导我走义路。
23:4我虽然行过死荫的幽谷、也不怕遭害.因为你与我同在.你的杖、你的竿、都安慰我。
23:5在我敌人面前、你为我摆设筵席.你用油膏了我的头、使我的福杯满溢。
23:6我一生一世必有恩惠慈爱随着我.我且要住在耶和华的殿中、直到永远。”

腓4:19-所需用的都充足
“我的神必照他荣耀的丰富,在基督耶稣里,使你们一切所需用的都充足。”

有人问:耶稣没有保护你吗?
我们是当兵的,必然准备死伤

不要做逃兵、软脚兵、懒惰兵,要做精兵

神说:我的恩典够你用;那杀身体不能杀灵魂的,不要怕他

五、神的医治

王下20:5-医治希西家王
“你回去告诉我民的君希西家,说,耶和华你祖大卫的神,如此说,我听见了你的祷告,看见了你的眼泪,我必医治你,到第三日,你必上到耶和华的殿。”

他(讲员)两个礼拜可以走路;三个月讲道

诗30:2-祢医治了我
“耶和华我的神阿!我曾呼求你,你医治了我。”

彼前2:24-他的鞭伤,得医治
“他被挂在木头上亲身担当了我们的罪,使我们既然在罪上死,就得以在义上活。因他受的鞭伤,你们便得了医治。”

六、无限感恩

诗103:1-5-如鹰返老还童
“103:1我的心哪、你要称颂耶和华.凡在我里面的、也要称颂他的圣名。
103:2我的心哪、你要称颂耶和华、不可忘记他的一切恩惠。
103:3他赦免你的一切罪孽、医治你的一切疾病。
103:4他救赎你的命脱离死亡、以仁爱和慈悲为你的冠冕。
103:5他用美物、使你所愿的得以知足、以致你如鹰返老还童。”

诗116:12-13-举起救恩的杯,称扬耶和华的名
“我拿甚么报答耶和华向我所赐的一切厚恩。 我要举起救恩的杯,称扬耶和华的名。”

张茂松牧师信息-11月17日晚上

生命中最重要的东西

让我们好好爱神

韩国教会脱鞋,因他(讲员)以前袜子穿到不同颜色的而尴尬,以后就索性买清一色的黑袜子

耶稣不在乎你懂不懂唱歌、讲道,乃在乎你爱不爱他

你涂口红,是否一次涂完整支?马利亚一次打破香膏 SK2,肯定慷慨

患上超郁症 Hyper depression-他或她讲完了不听你就走,这种人难搞

神给的-眼睛未曾看见,耳朵未曾听见,心未曾想过的

神对你说:儿啊,没有这么快走开? 听听流水,看看飞鸟

奉献要给什么样的钞票?最大张的
有爱就舍得
神若把氧气收10%,我们都不得了。神从来没有舍不得

今天我们必须打破贫穷的灵,打破小气的灵

尽心尽意尽力尽性爱主你的神,其次也相仿,就是爱人如己

很多教会人多,但从来不令人感动
怎样才可以感动?就是多陪人走一里路

举例:你给人面包,要加一点酱,加一杯咖啡,让别人更蒙福

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Lord, Thank You for This Papaya

A trip to rural Guatemala last week reminded me of how much I take for granted. Have you counted your blessings?

You won’t find El Rosario, Guatemala, on most maps. If you drive on the busy, two-lane CA-9 Highway between Rio Hondo and Gualán, all you see of the tiny village is a white brick wall with a big blue Pepsi sign. But if you turn down a dirt road you will find a thriving community with dozens of modest houses, a school, three churches, two butcher shops, a pharmacy, a TV repair shop and several small food stores.

Last week, with a team of six friends, I made my fourth journey to El Rosario. We went to encourage Oto and Ilma Morales, pastors of Iglesia Nueva Vision (Church of New Vision)—the largest evangelical church in the area. In the past we helped them remodel an orphanage, build a youth center and host a women’s conference. This time we ministered to their congregation and hosted a conference for families in an auditorium a few miles away.

I leave more of my heart in Guatemala every time I visit. I’ve watched the kids in the church grow up. Some of the teenagers who have Yahoo accounts e-mail me in broken English. Pastor Oto occasionally calls to ask when I can come back. Sometimes I just want to move there.

"In all this bare simplicity, a sense of joy pervaded the house. We knew these people loved Jesus. We could feel His presence there."

My friend Danny, a youth pastor from Baltimore, walked with me last Sunday afternoon through El Rosario’s narrow streets. We were soaking in the sights and sounds of rural Guatemalan culture: Coconut palms rustling softly in the breeze, barking dogs, crowing roosters, giggling children, houses painted bright yellow or aqua, motorcycles revving, hammocks swaying in tiny carports—all this against a breathtaking backdrop of the Sierra de las Minas mountains.

Life is not easy in El Rosario. The most prosperous family I met operates a bus service. Some people work in the fields harvesting local produce. Some of the women are maids at a nearby tourist hotel while others must find work in Zacapa, a larger town to the west. Many residents of El Rosario have never owned a car or traveled more than 20 miles in any direction. They certainly don’t have health insurance—although there is a local doctor who makes house calls for less than $5.

Danny and I walked to the edge of the town to a place called Linda Vista—“beautiful view”—where the poorest of the poor live in plywood and mud huts on the side of a steep hill. Their only running water is a common spigot on the path between six or eight homes. Crude electrical lines are drooped dangerously over corrugated metal roofs. As many as eight people live in each of the tiny huts.

It was almost dark, so some people in the neighborhood were outside their homes cooking dinner over open flames. Most of them live on beans, potatoes, plantains and—if they can afford it—scanty portions of meat. They are especially fond of their local fruits—including the papayas that were ripening on the trees during my visit.

These children live on the outskirts of El Rosario, Guatemala. A local church, Iglesia Nueva Vision, gives them education and meals four days a week.

As Danny and I walked down the hill a man came out of his three-room cinder block house and waved excitedly. He recognized me from the church service that morning and asked us to come inside. His wife and daughter greeted us, and the little girl shyly offered me two small orange flowers as a gift. “I have a gift for you, too,” the man said in Spanish. Then he went behind his house with a machete to retrieve the surprise.

Danny and I looked around at the sparse room with its bare concrete floor and exposed rafters. A few plastic toys were scattered in a corner. Two metal chairs and a simple dinette set furnished the living area. Light came from a single electric bulb dangling from the ceiling. In all this bare simplicity, a sense of joy pervaded the house. We knew these people loved Jesus. We could feel His presence there.

The father returned in a moment holding a giant papaya—almost the size of a watermelon. It was obvious he wanted to honor me in some way because my sermon that morning had blessed him. This was his offering. It could have been his dinner, but he wanted me to have it.

Then I hugged the man’s wife and reached down to thank the little girl for the flowers. Danny exchanged hugs with all three of them, and the man told us he and his family would see us again in church that night. I gave the man a hug and took the massive fruit, holding it carefully as if it were an expensive package.

Later that evening after church, we sat around Pastor Oto’s kitchen table and shared the sweet, juicy papaya—which was big enough to feed our whole team. It was not as fancy a meal as the turkey dinners many of us will eat this week, and it was not served in a china dish with silver utensils. But that simple fruit, cut from a tree by grateful hands, helped me reclaim a heart of thanksgiving.

J. Lee Grady is editor of Charisma.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Central District Council Thanksgiving Dinner

The AG Central District Council holds a Thanksgiving Dinner for its Ministers on 24th Nov. It was held at Bangsar Seafood Restaurant.

Pastor Johnson & Mrs Penny Low (R) with Pastor Allen & Cecilia Tan (L)


Students from Malaysian Tamil Bible Institute

Julia Teh (R) & Ann Low

The violinist cum singer from First Assembly of God, Pudu, Kuala Lumpur

Pastor Jason Goh (R) receiving a reward from CDC superintendent Pastor Michael Ho for being in >30 years of Ministry

What is happening to the Charismatic Renewal Movement?

by William Lau

In response to J. Lee Grady's Preparing for a Charismatic Meltdown

Preparing for a Charismatic Meltdown was written by no less an authority on the Charismatic Movement than J. Lee Grady, Editor of Charisma. The article is shocking in its import although not surprising. What is happening to the Charismatic Renewal Movement?

When the Charismatic Movement was born over forty years ago, it was in reaction to a form of evangelicalism which at that time among other things taught believers the virtues of self-denial, suffering for Christ, and even poverty. It promoted austerity both inwardly in the spirit and outwardly as a lifestyle. Unfortunately, there was little joy or "abundant life" evident in the lives of the believers. Some even characterized it as being spiritually dead and lifeless.

The ground was thus fertile for the advent of a teaching that taught an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit which would result in unspeakable joy, power through the Spirit for an abundant and overcoming life, and fruitfulness for the Kingdom of God. It taught that through the Holy Spirit believers would be enabled to become effective witnesses for Jesus Christ.

Acts 1:8 - But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

What was the purpose of the coming of the Holy Spirit?

The primary purpose of the coming of the Holy Spirit was to empower believers to witness for Christ and to proclaim the Kingdom of God effectively. It was to impart power to believers to fulfill the Great Commission before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. As clear as this purpose was according to Acts 1:8, it was in the end neglected for the most part by the Charismatic Movement. How did this come to pass?

There is a trait of human beings that is manifest time and time again. Whenever we move to an extreme position, there will inevitably be a reaction. That reaction will be in the opposite direction. Unfortunately the backlash can take us all the way to the very opposite extreme. That is what has happened to the Charismatic Movement.

As an example of this, over 500 years ago Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation reacted to Roman Catholicism which erred at the time by teaching a form of justification by works. We are now taught correctly from Ephesians 2:8-9 that we are saved by grace through faith, and not by works. However, Protestantism eventually went to the opposite extreme of teaching that once we are saved by faith in Christ, we are not required to obey the Lord with any good works at all---despite the admonition in James 2:14-20. Some have aptly labeled this the gospel of "cheap grace." We have gone from salvation by works all the way to salvation by doing nothing except a public confession with no outward evidence whatsoever of saving faith---from one extreme to the other.

What happened to the Charismatic Renewal Movement

This very same thing has occurred to a large extent within the mainstream Charismatic Movement. In reacting to the self-denial and asceticism once taught by mainstream evangelicalism, charismatic teaching has drifted steadily to the opposite extreme. The emphasis has become primarily directed toward securing God's blessings for our spiritual and material comfort here on earth. While it is true that God wants to restore His people's lives on earth and to provide for their physical needs, there has developed a definite imbalance in the teaching. Even though it is taught that like Abraham we are "blessed to be a blessing," the emphasis is almost always on how to secure God's blessing for oneself and far less on being a blessing. The original promise to Abraham from God is found in Genesis 12.

Genesis 12:2 - I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.

And so we scour God's word and listen to many good teachings on how to secure the Lord's blessings in their various forms for us and our loved ones---how to become "successful" in this life. After we are sufficiently blessed and restored, then we can be a blessing to others. What is wrong with that?

The heart is deceitful beyond all things

Firstly, "the heart is deceitful beyond all things and beyond cure" (Lamentations 17:9). When we start out our walk with the Lord by focusing exclusively on what He can do for us beyond eternal life and the forgiveness of sins, our priorities can go astray, however gradually. Our priorities should be to obey and please Him in everything that we do because we love and fear Him. But instead we are slowly led to the motivation of obeying and pleasing Him for the sake of receiving blessings from Him on earth. It is the "seed" theology of giving in order to get back here on earth. We have become unbalanced and forgotten the admonitions from Paul and Peter:

Colossians 3:1 - Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

1 Peter 1:13 - Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed.

When will enough be enough?

Secondly, when will we reach the point of being sufficiently blessed, strengthened and restored so that we can devote full or more attention to being a blessing to "all peoples on earth"? Few are the believers who have been taught to pursue God's blessings zealously and then who can change direction and their focus to devoting energy for dispensing blessings for the sake of the advance of the Kingdom of God on earth. Once one has been given a motivation and a focus, it is not easy to change.

For some believers, enough is never enough. They want "all that God has for them" on earth. Yes, they have learned to give generously, but for the primary purpose of getting more.

We are blessed in order to become a vehicle of the gospel

Thirdly, the original promise to Abraham that "all peoples on earth will be blessed through you" referred specifically to the coming of his seed---Jesus Christ---through whom redemption and the forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed to all nations (Genesis 22:17; Galatians 3:8,16). Abraham would be a blessing by being the obedient vehicle through whom the gospel of Jesus Christ would be given to the world.

Therefore we are to be a blessing by being the vehicles through whom Jesus Christ will be proclaimed to all peoples as the only Savior and the only way to the Father. We are to be a blessing as agents of the Great Commission given by Christ to the Church. But how many of us are actively involved in preaching the gospel and fulfilling the Great Commission? The answer is very few, although we are thankful that some do indeed give very generously for the work of evangelism and missions. But most charismatic believers instead invest their time and energy in learning about what God can do for them.

Unfortunately, this kind of "learning" (as designed by the teachers) can take a lifetime, leaving precious little time and energy to accomplish the works commanded by Jesus Christ to His disciples in order that He might return for His Second Coming. When are the learning and restoration complete? For the many who have learned how to just sit and receive, it is likely never finished. Ironically, this is good for the success and popularity of the teachers whom they so avidly follow.

The Old Testament is but a shadow

Fourthly, many of the earthly blessings cited by charismatic ministries which teach about the "successful Christian life" are taken from the Old Testament. Deuteronomy 28 is an especially good example of this. The Old Testament, however, is but a shadow of what is to be fulfilled in Christ Jesus. Thus the flavor and tone of the Old Testament contrasts noticeably from that of the New Testament. The Old Testament can be compared to the letter while the New Testament to the spirit. It can only be by the spirit that we can properly interpret and understand the purpose behind the letter. Does the New Testament place more emphasis on material and spiritual blessings in this life, or on the eternal blessings in the next? Does the New Testament focus on the benefits of faith in this life, or on having faith in Christ which leads to a life of holiness and good works pleasing to the Lord? The answer is clear to those who know the Scriptures.

The primary blessing is spiritual

Galatians 3:14 - He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

The primary blessing that we are to receive as New Testament believers is spiritual: the promise of the Spirit and spiritual blessings that He brings.

Ephesians 1:13 - And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of his glory.

Here the apostle Paul describes the Holy Spirit as "a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance." Indeed, that is the greatest blessing---not the real estate known as the land of Israel as promised to Abraham, or any other earthly blessing for that matter---but the guarantee of our inheritance above where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.

The purpose of the coming of the Holy Spirit

The purpose of the coming of the Holy Spirit should be for disciples to know the Lord intimately so that they will love Him more, live a holy life in the fear of God, and serve Him obediently. Its purpose should be for disciples to have power to become effective witnesses of Christ Jesus so as to fulfill the Great Commission. Then they will hear His words, "Well done, good and faithful servant! …Come and share your master's happiness!" This is what disciples of Jesus Christ should live for and look forward to.

The gifts of the Holy Spirit upon which charismatic believers place much emphasis are, in accordance with 1 Corinthians 12, for building up the body of Christ. But what is the purpose of building up the body? Along with the five-fold ministry, the gifts help to "prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up" (Ephesians 4.12). Unfortunately, most charismatic teachings do not equip God's people for works of service, but instead to receive more blessings from God on earth. Again, we note the imbalance within the contemporary charismatic Church.

The Holy Spirit should stir our hearts not just to ask what God can do for us, but what we can do for God.

A suspect foundation

Finally, "your boasting is not good. Don't you know that a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough?" (1 Corinthians 5:6) Whenever there is a weakness in the foundation of a building, the entire structure is in danger of collapse as more and more weight is put on the suspect foundation over time. In the same way, the imbalance that has characterized the Charismatic Movement since its near inception is now threatening the entire structure and may bring down the entire movement. When the Movement returns to the fear of God in spirit and in truth, then it may survive. Or God may decide to demolish the entire structure and then to rebuild the foundation: we are given the Holy Spirit in order that we might be empowered to be effective witnesses of Jesus Christ to the world in our lives, in our words, and in our works of supernatural power.

What about our earthly needs?

Jesus taught us to "seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matthew 6:33).

As J. Lee Grady wrote at the end of his article:

"All of us should be trembling. God requires holiness in His house and truth in the mouths of His servants. He is loving and patient with our mistakes and weaknesses, but eventually, if there is no repentance after continual correction, His discipline is severe. He will not be mocked.

Romans 11:22 says: 'Behold then the kindness and severity of God; to those who fell, severity, but to you, God's kindness, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you also will be cut off' (NASB)."