Jurong Outreach

"whom we proclaim, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ."


Leave a comment

Marriage Communication

We published an article on  marriage last week and this week, we would like to include some guidelines for marriage communication.

1. Be a ready listener and do not answer until the other person has finished talking. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” (Proverbs 18:21)

2. Be slow to speak. Think first.  Don’t be hasty in your words.  Speak in such a way that the other person can understand and accept what you say. “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.”  (James 1:19)

3. Speak the truth always but do it in love.  Do not exaggerate. “Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth.” (1 Corinthians 13:6)

4. Do not use silence to frustrate the other person.  Explain why you are hesitant to talk at this time.

5. Do not become involved in quarrels.  It is possible to disagree without quarrelling

6. Do not respond in anger.  Use a soft and kind response. “How long will ye vex my soul, and break me in pieces with words.” (Job 19:2)

7. When you are in the wrong, admit it and ask for forgiveness. “Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up.” (1 Corinthians 13:4) 

8. Avoid nagging. “A continual dropping in a very rainy day and a contentious woman are alike.” (Proverbs 27:15). “It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.” (Proverbs 21:9)

9. Do not blame or criticize the other but restore them, encourage them and edify them.  If someone verbally attacks, criticizes or blames you, do not respond in the same manner. “But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.” (James 3:8-10)

10. Try to understand the other person’s opinion.  Make allowances for differences.  Be concerned about their interests. “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.” (Philippians 2:3-4)

Are you in love with the Lord?

 

7 Questions to ask yourself:

1. Do you think of Him often?
How often do you think of Jesus? Is He only in your thoughts during Sunday worship services? (Philippians 4:8)

2. Do you want to please Him?
Jesus’ love for God motivated him to put God’s will first in His life. (John 8:29b, John 4:34a, Luke 22:42b)

3. Do you conduct yourself so as to make a good impression? (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Does your life show that you have changed?  Does your conduct confirm it?

4. Do you like to be with Him?
His invitation to all is, “Come to Me” (Matthew 11:28)  Jesus was so close to Paul that he states in (Gal 2:20) “Christ lives in me.”

5. Do you have implicit faith in Him?
The Bible speaks of different degrees of faith:
“great” faith (Matthew 8:10), “strong” faith (Romans 4:20)
“little” faith (Matthew 6:30), and “weak” faith (Romans 14:1)

What kind of faith do you have in the Lord?

6.   Do you want to make Him happy?
Do you enjoy giving Him gifts?  Paul said that you prove “the sincerity of your love through giving. (2 Corinthians 8:8)

7.   Do your present and your future center in Him?
When you sing, “Jesus is all the world to me,” do you mean it? (Philippians 3:7-8) Paul was not interested in a future that did not include Jesus.  What about you?

Advertisements


Leave a comment

Marriage is a Loving Affair

Most people say, in one way or another, “We are getting married because we love each other.

Love is vital to success in marriage.  The Bible affirms the need for love between husband and wife.  Here are two vital verses on this truth:
“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.” (Ephesians 5:25)
“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.” (Titus 2:4)

From these two verses, we learn several important truths about the kind of love that should exist between husband and wife.  First, love is a command from God.  Second, Christ’s love for the church is the model for proper loving.  Third, love is to be taught.  Fourth, there must be a receptive mind toward developing proper love.  Firth, love is something we grow in day by day.

In a society where love is abused and misused; and where love is usually equated with emotions and sex, it becomes essential to note carefully the love commanded by God.  In Ephesians 5:25, Paul uses the word agape (love).  This is a decision of the will to seek the higher good for the other person.  It involves caring and providing for another.  In 1 Corinthians 13, Paul calls it “the greatest.”

In Tit 2:4, Paul uses philandros (love).  This word denotes the “affectionate” aspect of love.  The emphasis is upon thoughtful expressions of love ”from the heart.”  It is the wife “showing” her husband that she loves him.  This is taught by older women to the younger women.

Since husbands must love their wives as Christ loved the church, it follows, therefore, that one must have a basic knowledge about Christ and His relationship with the church.  How else can a husband obey this command?  Any approach to premarital counselling does not include studying how Christ loved the church is missing an essential ingredient in helping couples, especially men, understand the nature and kind of love that is to exist between husbands and wives.

In the text, Paul stresses one of the major ways Christ loved the church: “…gave Himself for it.”  However, this is one of the most difficult things for a husband (or wife) to do, and that is to give unto death for another.  This is especially true in our selfish society where everyone is geared to a “get” philosophy of life.  The Husband must do all “for her.”  This is biblical and godly life in action within a marriage.

In the context of Titus 2:4,5, we find seven things the younger women must be taught:
To be sober minded.
To love their husbands.
To love their children.
To be chaste (pure in heart).
To be workers at home (domestic emphasis).
To show kindness.
To be in subjection to their own husbands.

The seriousness of this teaching and training is expressed by Paul in these words, “…that the word of God be not blasphemed” (Titus 2:5).  Order women, who have developed these qualities in their lives, have a tremendous role to play in helping a young wife and mother achieve success in marriage.

Marriage is a loving affair.  Love is a major key to success in marriage.  Without godly love, failure  lies ahead.  It is the one thing that abides.

It is not possible to discuss love without being reminded of God’s essay on love.  It is found in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, 1 Corinthians 13:13.

Each attribute of love, as defined by Paul, is a vital key to maintaining success in marriage.  The violation of any of these qualities will bring ruin to a marriage.  When we practice these qualities toward our mates, we are treating them like Christ treated (and treats) the church.  How can a marriage fail when husband and wife are being CHRISTIAN toward each other?

The word of God gives us “all things pertaining to life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3).  This includes marriage; the God who ordains marriage, joins couples in marriage, and wants marriage to succeed, has given us what we need in order to be successful in marriage.  Our challenge is one of heeding and allowing what He has said.  This is especially true with regards to love.  Our Creator said that husband and wife must love each other.  When they do, success in marriage will occur.

And The Greatest Of These Is LOVE!
(1 Corinthians 13:13)


Leave a comment

Come As You Are!

Early one morning fire broke out in a house on a dark street. A policeman on duty sounded the alarm. Before the fire engines could get to the scene, however, flames were leaping high into the air. Suddenly a young man appeared at an upper window in his pyjamas. Firemen quickly placed a ladder against the burning building. But to the consternation of all, the man refused to come down, shouting back that he had to get dressed first. The firemen pleaded, “Come as you are!” but to no avail. From below they tried to ascend the stairs, but were turned back as the wind fanned the flames into fury. When a rescuer tried to enter through a window, the heat and smoke forced him away. Suddenly the stairs gave way and the roof fell in. The man had waited too long and was buried beneath the ruins.

How much GREATER tragedy awaits ALL who refuse to “flee from the wrath to come.” (Luke 3:7) “Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, Oh generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?”

Our sins have placed US in a far more perilous situation – with JESUS as our ONLY “fire escape.”

But many reject God’s provision of salvation and safety in Christ because they want to get “dressed up” in the clothes of self-righteousness or religion (Matthew 7:21) “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Others procrastinate thinking, “I have plenty of time to decide” (Acts 24:25) “And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee.

Some delay their response because of concern about what others might think (cp. John 12:42) Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: Many simply do not understand the reality and danger of their predicament (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9) “And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; Others reject rescue attempts because they are clinging to material things which will soon be consumed (Matthew 6:19-21). Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Still others refuse to listen and trust the very ones who are warning even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! Their delay could cost them their SOULS!

God will not allow the world to continue along on its present course indefinitely! “He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. And He has given assurance of this to ALL by raising Him from the dead” (Acts 17:31) Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

The alarm has sounded: “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. (2 Peter 3:10).

But, Christ has come to the rescue! Delaying your response could have tragic consequences! Don’t delay! Come as you are!

Come as you are, placing your trust in God (Hebrews 11:6), repenting of your sin (2 Corinthians 7:9-10), confessing Jesus (Romans 10:9-10), being baptized (immersed) for the forgiveness of your sins (Acts 2:38), AND committing the rest of your life to following Him (Colossians 2:6).

Please, just come as you are!


Leave a comment

The Ten Lepers

One of the most interesting events in the life of Jesus is His meeting with ten lepers “And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed. And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?” (Luke 17:11-17)

So many people, down through the centuries, fail to express appreciation.  Instead of counting their blessings, multitudes list their complaints.  It is very common in our society to find that few are expressive of grateful words for those who bless their lives.  Particularly is this attitude evident in many children toward their parents.  In fact, it seems to be the order of the day for offspring to blame, accuse and have little regard for those who provide food, clothing, shelter and education for them.  A simple and sincere “thank you” is a rarity in our day, whereas disobedience, rebellion and anarchy is a dominant factor in our age.  Christianity demands more from us as we are taught to be grateful, considerate and encouraging.  (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

In the forty-four years I have tried to live for Jesus, as a gospel preacher, many people are on my “thank you” list.  To ponder over those moments and the brethren who make life rich and meaningful, stirs my soul to express deep and earnest appreciation.  I do not want to walk in the path of the nine lepers who failed to return and thank the Lord.

First of all, I am thankful to a loving sovereign God who sent the Redeemer to save my sinful soul.  The burden of guilt was lifted when Calvary became real and personal to me.  We show the gratitude we profess by the lives we manifest daily.  We surely appreciate the sacrifice Jesus made when He became “obedient unto death, yea, the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:8).  No one ever loved us like that, before or since.  What a friend we have in Jesus!

I am grateful to parents who put the kingdom first and taught me in word and by example what Christianity is all about.  My first memory is of my beloved mother singing gospel hymns as she worked in the home.  My dad, regardless of long hours of labour, would still study the Bible before going to bed.  We attended gospel meetings all summer longs, and I was privileged to hear and know scores of wonderful gospel preachers that still influence my life tremendously.

I am grateful for older members of the church who were constantly urging me to consider preaching the word—even when that was not what my future seemed to hold.  However, the seed they planted in my mind never totally went unheeded.

For powerful Bible teachers, who stirred in my heart and mind the rich content of Scripture and the peace and challenge of the sacred text, I shall be forever indebted.

Some of the best friends a young man could ever count taught me, by example and kind personal interest, the joy and contentment that comes from telling others the grand old story of salvation. I will fervently try to pass this enthusiasm on to young men today.

I am especially grateful to a corps of young preachers—then and now—that warm our hearts and invigorate the soul.  My fellow evangelists of forty years ago, helped when we were all young and idealistic.  At least ten of us would visit, correspond and help each other in every righteous endeavor.  We would pray together, rejoice freely in one another’s successes, have Bible drills to sharpen minds and exhort as needed. What camaraderie!  Those golden days will never be forgotten.  They are precious memories, indeed.

But now we are older preachers, and a new area of encouragement comes from young servants of God who are determined to preach the gospel with boldness.  They encourage us by their dedication and challenge us to keep up our study and unwavering loyalty for the cause of the Master.  It has been a marvelous trek with Christ and the family of God for which we give thanks.

Lest we be like those nine lepers, we must pause now to praise God for a spiritual helper such as the wife who stands by your side through all the years, in joy and in sorrow to hold up the banner of the cross.  Without such a one, we could not accomplish much for eternity.  That one leper will forever be a reminder to all of us to pause frequently to count our many blessings.  God has been very good to all of us.  May we praise His holy name.

 

Written by Johnny Ramsey