Europe, a place where God is blessing people

When God made the heavens and the earth everything was perfect.  The stars and the planets were in their correct order and location and everything was ‘on the move’.  Planet earth, the sun and the moon each were set revolving in an orderly manner.  The earth revolves around the sun at 67,000 miles per hour.  The sun orbits at 492,000 miles per hour.  The moon orbits Earth at a speed of 2,288 miles per hour and completes its circuit in just less than 28 days.  But note the following:

  1. We have no sensation of movement of any kind, other than we can see the moon in different positions in the sky.  
  2. We can trust and depend upon the stability of this order and mariners can plot their course by fixing their location in relation to the North Star. 
  3. We don’t have to worry when we go to bed at night that the sun will rise in the East and bring all the benefits to planet Earth that it requires to sustain life.  

The earth’s perfect crust was broken up in the days of Noah when God brought a universal judgement upon the earth because of sin.  The fragmentation of planet earth’s crust created tectonic plates, upon which seven continents now stand.  The seven continents are Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America and South America.  Europe borders with Asia and the straits of Gibralter forms a border between Africa and Europe.  We have considered the geography of continents and of Europe in particular now we lets think about the geo-political structure of Europe.  There are 27 nations that are presently in the European Union and 1 seeking divorce from the EU.  History reveals problems between nations, which have resulted in war, and the migration of many people from their home country.  The European Union has a Roman Treaty that reminds us of the four world gentile powers i.e. Babylon (Iraq) Persia (Iran), Greece and Rome.   The Bible identifies these four world powers as ‘the times of the gentiles’.  In Luke 21 v 24 we read “And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations:  and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled”. The expression ‘the times of the gentiles’ does not describe the collapse of the Roman Empire but looks forward to future days when another burgeoning gentile world empire will be overthrown by the second coming of Christ to earth. In the days of the Roman Empire God revealed his interest in man’s spiritual well being by introducing the gospel to Europe. Acts chapter 16 gives the details of the Lord assembling his servants in Troas (Turkey) for this great commission of bringing the gospel to the people of Europe.  While in Troas the Apostle Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia appealing for help, “come over and help us” was his prayer.  Paul’s intended to travel East with the gospel but God had other purposes for him, the Holy Spirit re-directing him North-West into Europe.  The writer of the book of Acts was a Doctor, Luke and in chapter 16 of Acts he changes the pronoun ‘they’ to ‘we’. This reflects when Luke joined himself to the missionary journey.  God didn’t provide Paul with an accountant or a fisherman, he provided a doctor.  What a blessing this was when Paul arrived in Philippi and was treated brutally. Thankfully Dr Luke was on hand to help.  In Philippi, Macedonia Paul preached the Gospel and three people were became believers.  The first was a lady named Lydia, she was a businesswoman who had taken her business from Thyatira in Turkey to Europe.  Thyatira is the area where the purple dye was produced and Lydia was a ‘seller of purple’.  Her business interests did not deter her from believing in God and when Paul preached the gospel to a company of women by the riverside the Lord opened her heart to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and she was saved.  Not only was she saved, she was then baptized and immediately opened her home  to the preachers.  Lydia’s life was changed by her faith in the Son of God, also members of her household were saved at the same time.  God delights to save in families.  The second person that Paul reached with the Gospel was a young girl.  People were manipulating her young life.  She brought her masters a lot of profit by her sooth-saying but her demon possession ended when she received Christ as Saviour and the Holy Spirit indwelt her changing her life dramatically. Many young peoples lives are today being messed up by an indulgence in alcohol, recreational drugs which bring the sellers much gain and bondage to the spirit world.  Her salvation caused a rumpus in the city and her previous controllers created an uproar resulting in Paul and Silas being thrown into prison. This place was where the third person got saved; he was the keeper of the prison.  Paul and Silas were singing at midnight, their feet fast in the stocks, their backs bleeding when an earthquake occurred causing the building to be shaken and the prisoners released from the chains that held them.  The Jailor fearing for his life was about to commit suicide when Paul cried “do thyself no harm, we are all here”.  The Jailor called for a light, drew his sword and sprang into the secured area.  The question upon his lips “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”  Paul answered his question “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved, and all thy house” that man was saved, and his family and they were baptized the same night.God is still saving souls in Europe, have you asked the question “What must I do to be saved”.  Believe today and you will be saved. 

(source : findthemissingpeace.co.uk)

Would you forgive your brother’s murderer?

On September 6, 2018, Amber Guyer—an off-duty patrol officer in Dallas—entered the apartment of 26-year-old accountant Botham Jean. She later said she thought it was her own apartment and mistook Jean for a burglar, shooting and killing him.

One year later, on October 1, 2019, she was found guilty of murder. On October 2, she was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Botham Jean’s brother Brandt was allowed to give a victim-impact statement, and he addressed Amber Guyer directly.

The result was a beautiful Christian testimony—truly salt and light in a dark and twisted world.

“If you truly are sorry, I can speak for myself, I forgive, and I know if you go to God and ask him, he will forgive you.

And I don’t think anyone can say it—again I’m speaking for myself—but I love you just like anyone else.

And I’m not gonna say I hope you rot and die just like my brother did, but I presently want the best for you.

And I wasn’t going to ever say this in front of my family or anyone, but I don’t even want you to go to jail. I want the best for you, because I know that’s exactly what Botham would want you to do.

And the best would be to give your life to Christ.

I’m not going to say anything else.

I think giving your life to Christ would be the best thing that Botham would want you to do.

Again I love you as a person and I don’t wish anything bad on you.

I don’t know if this is possible, but can I give her a hug, please?

Please?”

(source : findthemissingpeace.co.uk)

RESURRECTION DAY

Mark 16:6 And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him.


 The resurrection of Jesus Christ is foundational for Christianity. If He had not risen from the dead then we could not be saved. What great hope we have knowing that Jesus Christ is alive today. A man in heaven who one day we will see!
Paul wrote in 1 Cor 15 that if Christ is not risen then our faith is in vain. He goes on to say that we would be of all men most miserable. The resurrection is at the root of all that we believe. Christianity is unique in this. Religion boasts in its dead leaders. They cannot take you to an empty tomb and say He is not here but is risen.

Belief in the resurrection is vital for salvation. Rom 10:9 tells us ‘that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.’
Great efforts were made to ensure that the body of Jesus could not be taken away by his disciples. A large stone with a seal and Roman guard however could not keep the Lord in the tomb. The stone was rolled away and the guards became as dead men at the sight of the angel. Of course it was only rolled away to show that the tomb was empty. No doubt rumours of the resurrection spread and the soldiers were paid to lie. Those rumours could have easily been stopped. All the authorities needed to do was to show them His body. But they did not because they could not because He had risen.
 No one has ever been able to disprove the resurrection. The evidence to support it far outweighs the contrary. What hope and joy we have because HE IS ALIVE!

(source : http://www.findingthemissingpeace.co.uk)

Winston Churchill – Hero or Villain?

Earlier this month Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell is in the firing line after calling wartime PM Winston Churchill a villain.

Responding to quick-fire questions at the end of a live video interview with Politico, McDonnell was asked if Churchill was a hero or a villain, to which he replied: “Tonypandy – villain.”

I suppose at the end of the day it doesn’t really matter what folks  think about Churchill, but the Lord posed a similar question about Himself in Matthew chapter 22 “Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is He?”

In Matthew chapter 16 the Lord had asked another similar question “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?” to which there had been many replies, but Peter’s answer in verse 16 of that chapter is tremendous – “Thou art the Christ, the son of the living God.” Let us appreciate the greatness of the Lord today, for all that He is and all that He has done!

We must agree with the astonished exclamation in Mark chapter 7 verse 37 “He hath done all things well: He maketh both the deaf to hear and the dumb to speak.”

Mark Nelson

Are you frightened about the state of the world?

Are you frightened about the state of the world at the moment? Many people find it very scary, as every day seems to bring another disaster. Murder seems to be so commonplace! On a daily basis we hear of someone else going on the rampage and killing people! Individual acts of terrorism are on the increase resulting in the tragedy of people being deprived of their loved ones by an act of violence. Events of yesterday seem so long ago as we wake up to hear of another tragic evil act being perpetrated. 

I find it all very distressing and yet I, sadly, can see the inevitability of the way the world is going. The Bible teaches that conditions in society will get worse and worse as time progresses. Paul, as an old man, wrote to Timothy, a young man – ‘This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away,’ 2 Timothy 3:1-5. I think what the Bible is saying in these verses is staring us in the face. Do you recognize a description of our society?
 
If we reject the moral compass of the Bible then ultimately there are consequences. In effect morality becomes subjective and personal. There is no absolute standard of right and wrong. Everyone does what is right in his or her own eyes. This is not a new problem. It happened in Bible times, and many times since but every time is happens the results are disastrous. The old book says ‘There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death,’ Proverbs 14:12.
 
If we don’t get back to the Bible we can expect society to get worse and worse. We need to educate the next generation so that they don’t make the mistakes that we have made. The Bible says ‘Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it,’ Proverbs 22:6
 
I’m also glad to say that the Bible states that ‘But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound,’ Romans 5:20. This means that the gospel of Jesus Christ can meet the needs of a wicked society. Forgiveness starts with the individual. The promise of scripture is still true – ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness,‘ 1 John 1:9. Society will never change by enforcement but by the transforming power of God working in the each individual’s life through the gospel of Jesus Christ.
 
Are you fearful? Scripture says ‘perfect love casteth out fear,’ ‘the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord’. 

(source : findingthemissingpeace.co.uk)

New Year Challenges and Changes

new year

new year

NEW YEAR CHALLENGES

A New Year brings fresh challenges and opportunities but life is so unpredictable! At times, the variety life brings can be very exciting but sometimes it’s a bit frightening. That flood in the house, the illness that took us by surprise! The speed of change and our helplessness can be disconcerting! As mere mortals, we cannot control our circumstances and have to try to cope with what is inevitable as well as we possibly can.

UNAVOIDABLE SITUATIONS

There are many situations like this in life. Illness often cannot be avoided, we are affected by what other people do, and often circumstances are out of our control. Most of the time we are quite skilful at coping but sometimes we just have to go with the flow. I am not a laid back type of person so I often wonder what it must be like to be relaxed and unaffected by changeable circumstances.

new yearDEATH

The ultimate uncontrollable event is death. It creeps up on every one of us. We may prolong life and improve the quality of our twilight years but we cannot evade death in the long term! I believe, and the Bible teaches, that there is hope in Jesus.

JESUS HAS CONTROL OVER DEATH

He is the only man who ever had control over his own death. It is recorded that Jesus brought at least three people back to life – see the accounts in the Bible in John 11, Luke 7:11-17 and Luke 8:40-56. When it came to His own death, Jesus voluntarily sacrificed His life. By this, I don’t mean only that He went the place of His execution willingly but that at His crucifixion His life did not ebb away, as it would with us. He consciously laid down His life so that we might have eternal life. Read it for yourself in the Bible, Luke 23.46. The Bible states it explicitly when it says ‘Christ died for our sins’.

THE PROFOUND MESSAGE OF CHRISTIANITY

The profound message of Christianity is this! My sinful behaviour has moral consequences. God is loving but He is also holy. His distaste of sin is such that it would be an insult to His character to allow people into His presence who have been marked by it. The dilemma is that God wants to share eternal life with His creatures but we, historically, have distanced ourselves from Him.

new yearTHE BIBLICAL SOLUTION

What is the solution according to the Bible? The Son of God became a man through a miraculous conception but a normal birth. In His life of thirty-three years, He demonstrated that He was God by His miracles and His knowledge. He proved that He was holy and flawless in character by how he lived – even his enemies stated that there were no flaws in Him. All men die because of sin but Jesus could not die as He was without sin, fault, wrong or error. His death was a voluntary payment for guilty humanity. As a result, God offers us pardon and forgiveness.

RECEIVING FORGIVENESS

So how do you get this forgiveness? God treats His creatures as thinking individuals. He has given them the capacity to choose. The offer is still on the table. Consider, grieve about and admit your sin to God, not a religious person or organisation. Believe and depend on what the Lord Jesus has done and accept Him as your Saviour.

NEW YEAR CHANGES

I cannot describe the change that you will find when you come. It cannot be defined in words. It does not guarantee a problem-free existence. It will bring about changes in your lifestyle, not enforced change as a result of rules but changes in interests and desires for better things. It will mean your guilty status before God has been resolved. You will be saved forever.
Read the Bible and seek the Lord while He may be found.
Images Courtesy of:
2019   – Covi
Cafe – Pexels
Cemetery – TazzAnderson
Woman and clock  –EnginAkyurt
Article Courtesy of:
findthemissingpeace.co.uk

Baby Jesus stolen from nativity scene

A recent article reported a baby Jesus figure as having been stolen from St Annes Square nativity scene (Lancashire) – see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-lancashire-46599641

Is this vandalism or deliberate theft? We trust the culprit will return the baby Jesus.

I was reminded by this news article of the sad fact that so many people love to celebrate Christmas, but the Lord Jesus is absent! Whilst I’m not a lover of nativity scenes, I am all for reminding people that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”. Is the Lord Jesus Christ part of your life?

Do you have room for Him?

Remember, what I do with Jesus Christ in this life, He will do with me in eternity.

If I have no room for Him in life and refuse to accept Him as my Saviour, then He will have no room for me in heaven, and on account of my sin will refuse to accept me.

Wise men years ago asked after Jesus Christ was born,  “Where is He?” Ask yourself the same question.

NJH

CHRISTMAS IS NOTHING WITHOUT CHRIST

If there is no Christ – there is no Christmas! Why are Christians are so convinced that Jesus Christ is the Son of God? Why you might ask, it’s an excellent question.
Our belief is laid on a very solid foundation. First of all we believe in divine revelation not just human discovery. In fact to learn about something outside of our sphere of experience we all accept we need information from a trustworthy source. If you are serious about discovering the truth – check the Bible out. It is a trustworthy source. Read it, check it’s sources, speak to those who believe it, look at it’s accuracy in every sphere it touches. There can only be one answer to the question of the origin of a book that was written over one thousand five hundred years by forty different authors, many of whom did not even know each other. The Bible is God’s message to mankind.
Secondly check the facts concerning Jesus Christ. There are over three hundred signposts (biblical predictions/prophecies) which point to him. The chances of them all being fulfilled precisely in the life of one person, at the right time, in the right place are mindblowing odds apart from this fact – God planned it and implemented His plan in a person – His Son, Jesus Christ. The Bible predicts the mode of his conception, the place of his birth, his exile into Egypt, the slaughtering of the innocents, the gifts from the magi and lots more.
Finally look at the prediction about the way that Jesus would die. Psalm 22 and Isaiah 52 describe the horrific death of God’s Son on a cross. Death by crucifixion was unknown when Psalm 22 was written about 1000 years before the death of Jesus but God knew that was the way that His Son would die.
In closing please listen again to the words of the angels who announced the birth of the Lord Jesus ‘For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord’. Is he your Saviour? He died ‘for our sins’. He suffered ‘the just for the unjust that he might bring us to God’. Will you rest by faith on what the Lord Jesus did to save your soul?

HARRY & MEGAN’S WEDDING SERMON

HARRY & MEGAN’S WEDDING SERMON – PREACHER MICHAEL CURRY

I so enjoyed the preaching of this man today that I wanted to present it to you. It is not for me to critique his preaching but I want to highlight some of things he said that we would do well to consider.
May you come to know Christ as Lord and Saviour through the word of God. If you understand the grace of God and love of God as displayed in Christ Jesus then you need to repent of your sins, and Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved. Acts 16. 31.
The Wedding Sermon
The late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, and I quote: “We must discover the power of love, the redemptive power of love. And when we do that, we will make of this old world a new world. Love is the only way.
There’s power in love. Don’t underestimate it. Don’t even over-sentimentalize it. There’s power, power in love. If you don’t believe me, think about a time when you first fell in love. The whole world seemed to center around you and your beloved. There’s power, power in love. Not just in its romantic forms, but any form, any shape of love. There’s a certain sense, in which when you are loved and you know it, when someone cares for you and you know it, when you love and you show it, it actually feels right. There’s something right about it. And there’s a reason for it. The reason has to do with the source. We were made by a power of love. Our lives are meant to be lived in that love—that’s why we are here. Ultimately, the source of love is God himself—the source of all of our lives.
There’s an old medieval poem that says it: “Where true love is found, God himself is there.” The New Testament says it this way:Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; and those who love are born of God and know God; those who do not love, do not know God. Why? For God is love.
There’s power in love. There is power in love to help and heal when nothing else can. There’s power in love to lift up and liberate when nothing else will. There’s power in love to show us the way to live. Set me as a seal on your heart, a seal on your arm. For love, it is strong as death. But love is not only about a young couple. Now the power of love is demonstrated by the fact that we are all here. Two young people fell in love, and we all showed up. But it’s not just for and about a young couple who we rejoice with. It’s more than that.
Jesus of Nazareth, on one occasion, was asked to sum up the essence of the teachings of Moses. And he reached back to the Hebrew scriptures of Deuteronomy and Leviticus. And Jesus said, ‘You shall love the Lord your God, with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ This is the first and great commandment, and the second is like it: love your neighbor as yourself.
And then in Matthew’s version, he added, he said, on these two, love of God and love of neighbor, hang all the law, all the prophets, everything that Moses wrote, everything in the holy prophets, everything in the scriptures, everything that God has been trying to tell the world. Love God. Love your neighbors. And while you’re at it, love yourself.
Someone once said that Jesus began the most revolutionary movement in all of human history: a movement grounded in the unconditional love of God for the world. A movement mandating people to live that love, and in so doing, to change not only their lives, but the very life of the world itself. I am talking about some power. Real power. Power to change the world. If you don’t believe me, well, there were some old slaves in America’s Antebellum South who explained the dynamic power of love, and why it has the power to transform. They explained it this way. They sang a spiritual, even in the midst of their captivity. It’s the one that says there is a balm in Gilead—a healing balm.
There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole. There is a balm in Gilead to heal the sin-sick soul. One of the stanzas actually explains why: if you cannot preach like Peter, and you cannot pray like Paul, you just tell the love of Jesus, how he died to save us all. That’s the balm of Gilead.
This way of love, it is the way of life. They got it; he died to save us all. He didn’t die for anything he could get out of it. Jesus did not get an honorary doctorate for dying. He wasn’t getting anything out of it. He sacrificed his life for the good of others, for the well-being of the world, for us. That’s what love is.
Love is not selfish and self-centered. Love can be sacrificial and, in so doing, become redemptive. And that way of unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive love changes lives. And it can change this world. If you don’t believe me, just stop, think, and imagine.
Think and imagine a world when love is the way. Imagine our homes and families when love is the way. Imagine neighborhoods and communities when love is the way. Imagine governments and nations when love is the way. Imagine business and commerce when love is the way. Imagine this tired, old world when love is the way. When love is the way—unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive—then no child will go to bed hungry in this world ever again. When love is the way, we will let justice roll down like a mighty stream and righteousness like an ever-flowing brook. When love is the way, poverty will become history. When love is the way, the Earth will be a sanctuary. When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields down by the riverside to study war no more. When love is the way, there is plenty of good room for all of God’s children. Because when love is the way, we actually treat each other like we are actually family. When love is the way, we know that God is the source of us all. And we are brothers and sisters, children of God. My brothers and sisters, that’s a new heaven, a new Earth, a new world, a new human family.
And let me tell you something: Solomon was right in the Old Testament. That’s fire.
With this, we’ll sit down. We gotta get y’all married.
French Jesuit Pierre Teilhard de Chardin was arguably one of the great minds, great spirits of the 20th century—a Jesuit, Roman Catholic priest, a scientist, a scholar, a mystic. In some of his writings, he said from his scientific background as well as his theological one, that the discovery and harnessing of fire was one of the great scientific and technological discoveries in all of human history. Fire, to a great extent, made human civilization possible. Fire made it possible to cook food and to provide sanitary ways of eating, which reduced the spread of disease in its time. Fire made it possible to heat environments, and thereby made human migration around the world a possibility, even into older climates. There was no Bronze Age without fire, no Iron Age without fire, no Industrial Revolution without fire. The advances of science and technology are greatly dependent on the human ability and capacity to take fire and use it for human good.
Anybody get here in a car today, an automobile? Nod your heads if you did; I know there were some carriages. For those of us who came in cars, fire made that possible. I know that the Bible says—and I believe that Jesus walked on water. But I have to tell you I didn’t walk across the Atlantic Ocean to get here. Controlled fire in that plane got me here. Fire makes it possible for us to text and tweet and e-mail and Instagram and Facebook, and otherwise socially be dysfunctional with each other.
Fire makes all that possible. And de Chardin said that fire was one of the greatest discoveries of all of human history. He then went on to say that if humanity ever harnesses the energy of fire again, if humanity ever captures the energy of love, it would be the second time in history that we have discovered fire.
Dr. King was right: we must discover love, the redemptive power of love. And when we do that, we will make of this old world a new world.
My brother, my sister—God love you, God bless you. And may God hold us all in those almighty hands of love.
Amen.
For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life
The Gospel of John, chapter three, verse sixteen
(source : http://www.findingthemissingpeace.co.uk/)