Posts Tagged ‘Men’


2 Corinthians 2:14-17  But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task? Unlike so many, we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, like men sent from God.

When I read the words ‘triumphal procession in Christ’, I wondered what it must mean. I’ve dwelt on it for 2 days and looked at the historical context. What in me would cause God to want to show me in his victory parade? The catch words were ‘in Christ’. It is through Christ’s sacrifice that we are washed in His blood and therefore found acceptable in God’s sight. Then my mind wandered to the next phrase, ‘the fragrance of the knowledge of him’ and my mind was reeling again. What’s with Paul using such adjectives that make us think?

When we have a really positive experience, we cannot stop telling others about it. In Christ, we don’t just have a positive experience but a life-changing one and how much more joyous can that be? This knowledge is what we spread and the fragrance of Christ is sweet to the seeking soul and bitter to the ones who chose otherwise. It’s the greatest gift of eternal life to some and a bunch of ‘old wife tales’ to others. It is the difference between life and death and to those who celebrate the victory, it is sweet but to the rest, it is offensive. Are you the aroma of Christ to the world?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Ezekiel 20:41 “As a soothing aroma I will accept you when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you from the lands where you are scattered; and I will prove Myself holy among you in the sight of the nations.”


1 Corinthians 16:13-14
Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.

As we draw to the end of another chapter in the Bible, Paul encourages the Corinthian church and us through these 5 simple statements focussed on faith. As humans, we operate with our 5 senses. Anything outside this paradigm is nonsense and therefore unacceptable. Faith is is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see (Heb. 11:1). Faith is something most people brush away or even laugh at but it exists, much like gravity does. Paul writes to us to stand firm in our faith because he realizes that if our faith is not based on the foundation of Christ, we can easily drift away just like the seeds that fell on the rocky soil.

My faith walk has been a bumpy one and I praise God for it. I realize that as I continue to walk with the Lord, my sinful self is wearing away but very slowly because the Lord is weeding things out by helping me realize my mistakes and then cleansing me of them. It’s not an instantaneous transformation but a lifetime of change and I appreciate it more because it keeps me seeking Him more and more. When I first accepted the Lord, I was an infant (spiritually) and today I feel like a 10 year old and like a dear friend reminded me yesterday, what is our faith if we are not constantly questioning, seeking, answering and experiencing God in reality. Our faith is not a set of actions that results in satisfying God but it is a relationship that takes a lifetime to learn from and helps us enjoy eternity with God transformed in His image.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Galatians 5:1 It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.


1 Corinthians 7:17, 19, 23
Nevertheless, each one should retain the place in life that the Lord assigned to him and to which God has called him. This is the rule I lay down in all the churches.… Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. Keeping God’s commands is what counts… You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men.

I’ve spent most of my day thinking about these verses and trying to understand what my place is where our Lord Jesus has assigned me to? I am a husband, dad, brother, son, friend, neighbour, tenant, colleague, subordinate, immigrant, national, foreigner, etc. Am I better off in each role and am I bad at any? Does my culture differentiate me, does my faith necessitate that I amend my relationships, am I subservient to others or am I too forceful? What is God instructing us?

It is the duty of every Christian to be content with what the Lord has blessed them with. Our comfort and happiness depends on what we are to Christ, not what we are in the world. No one should try to make his faith or religion a reason to break any natural obligations like marriage. We should quietly and happily deal with the situation we are placed by God’s grace and seek ways to glorify Him. Our lives are not our own but His who gave His life to save ours. He has placed us in our situations to glorify Him and become more like Him. Hope you agree with me and are willing to be slave to Christ rather than a slave to the world?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


1 Corinthians 2:11-13
For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.

Understanding the Holy Spirit was one of the hardest aspects of my faith walk. I often wondered what it looked like, what changes occurred in me, what others saw in me to show fruits of the working of the Holy Spirit in me and so on. For someone who is still at the foot of the faith mountain, I am learning the hard way by asking, reading, seeking, praying and God who is the most patient teacher helps me understand Him bit by bit, day by day. Today as I read Paul’s letter to the Church in Corinth regarding the Holy Spirit, my eyes opened to one more truth.

The fragrance of a rose is always going to that of a rose. Plant it among sunflowers or in the forest and it’s fragrance should be that of a rose. We as humans will continue to operate as humans, sinful in our thinking and always causing more damage to ourselves and our environment. However, when we are no longer driven by the same spirit that drives us to act like humans, things change. This is not possible naturally because by nature, we are still human. However, when we are born again by accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are filled with God’s own spirit, which transforms us from the very core. We are no longer driven by human desire but by God’s heart. We still have the ability to choose and sometimes make bad choices but the spirit burdens our conscience which brings us back on our knees before the Lord asking for forgiveness. Paul here reminds us that we are driven by this spirit, the Holy Spirit, and therefore our wisdom is God’s wisdom and our understanding is His. Praise God for His goodness to us!

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Romans 5:18-19
Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

Every verse in Romans until now has been so rich and I’ve found it a challenge to pick a certain verse, topic or theme to write on. Paul is imparting a course on Christianity to the Romans and to us today and he gives us answers to serious and contentious issues we face even today in our faith. Today’s passage is pregnant with meaning because it talks about something that most people never understand. How could we face condemnation because of Adam’s sin?

Adam was the first man God created and he is the mould we are all made of. Our physical and emotional self is based on how God created him and therefore he is the image of all mankind. When Adam sinned, he showed human vulnerability to sin. The sin he committed may not have been great in our eyes, he only ate a forbidden fruit! In God’s eyes, it was disobedience and therefore sin crept in and so did death as a result of sin. Today, we live in sin and death is an accepted reality but what about our souls? Only through Jesus’ death are we forgiven from our sinfulness through faith in him and we are rewarded eternal life through his resurrection. One man’s sin destroyed the world and one man’s sacrifice saved it! Who do we want to follow?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


John 12:42-43
Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they would not confess their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.

During Jesus’ ministry, his life was constantly in danger from people who were threatened by his ministry and the fear was not that Jesus was able, was the messiah, was the Son of God or was strong but it was the fact that people started to throng after him. The Jews in authority were the ones who controlled the temple and this control gave them access to immense wealth, great respect, followings of people who would give everything up for them and a life where they were always looked up to. Suddenly Jesus came and seemed to steal their thunder. I’ve often condoned them and anyone else who tries to stand against the gospel but I now see them in a different light.

I was and am sometimes like one of these men of power. It seems like pride continues to be a stumbling block in our lives specially when we overcome difficulties and seem to be comfortable. Comfortable is an uncomfortable place for me spiritually because like those men, I tend to get complacent and judgmental and look down upon people whom I consider less privileged. I am reminded today that the ones I judge must call me brother for I have been in their shoes and I do not want to be judged by the Lord by his standards. If we were to stand before God in his perfect holiness, we would be totally destroyed for we are full of sin and filth but I praise God for he has washed me clean in his son Jesus’ blood that I now can spend eternity in heaven in God’s presence. I pray that the Lord would keep us humble and never let pride or fear of man find any room in our lives.

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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