Jurong Outreach

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


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Might This Thing Be?

Toward the end of 2 Kings 6, we are told about a terrible famine in Samaria. Benhadad, the king of Syria, had surrounded the city of Samaria at the same time.
The people inside the city of Samaria were starving. It was so bad that people were even cooking and eating their children.

When the king of Israel heard that people were even eating their children he became angry at Elisha the prophet. Evidently Elisha had told the king to wait on God to correct the famine and defeat the Syrians. The king sends a servant to kill Elisha. Then the king follows the servant to Elisha’s house.

The king asks Elisha, “Behold, this evil is of the Lord; what should I wait for the Lord any longer?” Elisha tells him that at the same time the next day that there would be plenty of food for everyone (2 Kings 7:1). The king’s right hand man, his most important advisor or soldier and called a lord, laughs at such talk. This lord mocks Elisha by stating, “Behold, if the Lord would make windows in heaven, might this thing be?”

The king’s lord’s statement is a mocking reference to the Flood. The word he uses for windows is the same word used in Genesis 7 for the windows of heaven which were opened by God to rain for the Flood.

This man is saying that God could not give that much food even if he opened the windows of heaven. This man did not believe the promises of God.

Elisha tells the man that indeed he shall see this happen but he will not partake in the blessings. The next day the Syrian army is deceived by God and runs away leaving all their food and belongings. The king places his right hand man at the gate of the city to try to keep the Samarians in orderly fashion to go to the Syrian camp and gather the spoils. The people run over the man and he is killed.

The prophecy of Elisha regarding the man and his statement is given twice more at the end of 2 Kings 7. That makes three times that it is given in the one chapter. We should learn from this that God is emphasizing the importance of believing what He says.

Even when we can’t seem to see the end result as yet, we must believe that God has promised us when we are suffering that He will be there for us, (John 14:27) and our trials will not be too much for us to bear (1 Corinthians 10:13 ).  We will have victory in Christ ultimately. God has told us that if we will obey His word that we will live with Him in Heaven. He has also told us that if we do not believe and obey His word that we will live eternally in Hell. I want to live with God in Heaven. I do not want to go to Hell. I am sure you want to go to Heaven as well. Do not be like the king’s lord who mocked by saying, “Might this thing be?”  God has shown us through His words how we can obtain this eternal life which He has promised to those who trust and obey.

You must have faith, a faith that trusts God (Hebrews 11:6).

You must repent of your sins (2 Corinthians 7:9-10), confess Christ (Romans 10:9-10), be baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of your sins (Acts 2:38), and continue to follow God for the rest on your life (1 John 1:7).

Do you fully believe in the promise of God?  Or are you asking, “Might this thing be?”

 

Sweet is the Promise
Sweet is the promise, “I will not forget thee,”
Nothing can molest or turn my soul away,
E’en tho’ the night be dark within the valley,
Just beyond is shining an eternal day.

Trusting the promise, “I will not forget thee,”
Onward will I go with songs of joy and love;
Tho’ earth despise me, tho’ my friends forsake me,
I shall be remembered in my home above.

When at the golden portals I am standing,
All my tribulations all my sorrows past,
How sweet to hear the blessed proclamation,
“Enter, faithful servant, welcome home at last”

“I will not forget thee or leave thee;
In My hands I’ll hold thee,
in My arms I’ll fold thee;
I will not forget thee or leave thee;
I am thy Redeemer, I will care for thee.

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Don’t Be Fooled!

Don’t be fooled by me! Don’t be fooled by the face I wear, for I wear a MASK!
I wear a thousand masks, masks that I am afraid to take off, and not ONE of them is me! Pretending is an art that is second nature with me, but don’t be fooled. I give the impression that I am secure, that all is sunny and unruffled with me, within as well as without, that confidence is my name and coolness is my game, that the waters are calm, and that I am in command and in need of no one. But DON’T believe it; PLEASE DON’T!

I idly chatter with you in the suave tones of surface talk. I tell you everything that’s really nothing, nothing of what’s crying within me!
So when I’m going through my routine, don’t be fooled be what I’m saying. Please listen carefully and try to hear what I’m NOT saying; what I would like to be able to say; what for survival, I need to say – but I cannot say! I dislike the hiding, honestly I do. I dislike the superficial phony games I’m playing. I’d really like to be genuine, spontaneous, and me; but you have to help me! You have to help me by holding out your hand, even when that’s the last thing I seem to want or need. Each time you are kind, gentle and encouraging, each time you try to understand because you really care, my heart begins to grow wings, very small wings, very feeble wings, but WINGS!

With your sensitivity and sympathy and your power of understanding, I can make it!
You can breathe LIFE into me. But it will not be easy for you. You see, a long conviction of worthlessness builds strong walls. But love is stronger than strong walls, and therein lies my hope. Please help beat down those walls with firm hands, but with gentle hands, for a child is very sensitive, and I am a child.

WHO AM I, you may wonder? I am every man, every woman, every child, every human that you meet! –Charles C. Finn (adapted)

 

We ALL share in the human experience don’t we? Each one of us has a need to be loved, to be understood, and to be accepted.
And as part of this human family,
EACH ONE OF US — regardless of who we are, where on this earth we may happen to live, or the colour of our skin – also has a “desperate need” for GOD—for His LOVE, His MERCY and His GRACE!

Because of His great love for us (John 3:16), “the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to ALL men” (Titus 2:11)
Because of His great love for us, Christ “gave himself for us TO REDEEM us from all wickedness and TO PURIFY for Himself a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good” (Titus 2:14). He paid the price for our condemning sin, so that YOU and I might find significance, belonging, purpose, and hope in Him.

 

We receive God’s MERCY and GRACE when we: place our trust in Him (Hebrews 11:6), repent of our sin (Acts 17:30-31), confess Jesus before men (Romans 10:9-10), are baptized (immersed) in Jesus’ name for the forgiveness of sin (Acts 2:38), AND commit the rest of our lives to follow His will as revealed in His Word (1 John 1:7; Psalm 119:105).

Don’t be fooled! We ALL need God!

Will YOU accept His MERCY and GRACE?

 

I Would Be True
I would be true, for there are those who trust me,
I would be pure, for there are those who care;
I would be strong, for there is much to suffer;
I would be brave, for there is much to dare.

I would be friend of all the foe, the friendless;
I would be giving and forget the gift;
I would be humble for I know my weakness;
I would look up, and laugh and love, and lift.

I would be prayerful through each busy moment;
I would be constantly in touch with God;
I would be tuned to hear the slightest whisper;
I would have faith to keep the path Christ trod.


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Let Your God Be My God

Jeroboam was told by a prophet that God would give him rule over ten tribes of Israel God was doing this to punish Israel for her sins against God.

1 Kings 11:26-35
26 And Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephrathite of Zereda, Solomon’s servant, whose mother’s name was Zeruah, a widow woman, even he lifted up his hand against the king.
27 And this was the cause that he lifted up his hand against the king: Solomon built Millo, and repaired the breaches of the city of David his father.
28 And the man Jeroboam was a mighty man of valour: and Solomon seeing the young man that he was industrious, he made him ruler over all the charge of the house of Joseph.
29 And it came to pass at that time when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite found him in the way; and he had clad himself with a new garment; and they two were alone in the field:
30 And Ahijah caught the new garment that was on him, and rent it in twelve pieces:
31 And he said to Jeroboam, Take thee ten pieces: for thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, Behold, I will rend the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give ten tribes to thee:
32 (But he shall have one tribe for my servant David’s sake, and for Jerusalem’s sake, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel:)
33 Because that they have forsaken me, and have worshipped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon, and have not walked in my ways, to do that which is right in mine eyes, and to keep my statutes and my judgments, as did David his father.
34 Howbeit I will not take the whole kingdom out of his hand: but I will make him prince all the days of his life for David my servant’s sake, whom I chose, because he kept my commandments and my statutes:
35 But I will take the kingdom out of his son’s hand, and will give it unto thee, even ten tribes.

Jeroboam did indeed become king over all the tribes except Benjamin and Judah. Jeroboam’s kingdom is known as Israel. The other two tribes are referred to as the nation of Judah. Jeroboam ends up setting up idols in his kingdom for the people to worship. He appoints priests out of all the tribes. Priests were supposed to be appointed only  of the tribe of Levi, according to God’s law.  Moreover, Jeroboam participates in offering sacrifices to the idols.

A young man is sent by God to tell him about his sins. Jeroboam attempts to have the man arrested. But instead, Jeroboam’s hand is dried up by God. He asks the young man to intreat “the Lord thy God” (1 Kings 13:6). Jeroboam is admitting that Jehovah God is the one God but does not recognize Him as his god. After the young man intreats God, Jeroboam’s hand is healed. But as we read in 1 Kings 13:33, Jeroboam did not turn from his evil ways. His actions continue to be sinful and he takes all the people into sin.

Jeroboam is like some people today. They recognize God as the God of the universe. But they do not obey God’s commands. Instead they do what they want to do, rather than what God wants them to do. But when things look bad, or something unfortunate happens to them, they want God to help. They will ask Christians to pray for them. They will tell Christians to keep them in mind. Their situation may even get better. And they will thank the Christians for their prayers. But they will not turn from their evil ways. They continue in their sins and encourage others to sin as well.

Do not be like Jeroboam. Study the Bible. Learn all you can from it. And then obey God and do His will. Do not only acknowledge God but also obey Him.

THE GOOD NEWS is that Jesus died on the cross so that each of us can be forgiven of our sins. Those who place their trust in Him (Hebrews 11:6), repent of sin (2 Corinthians 7:9-10), confess Jesus (Romans 10:9-10), and are baptized (immersed) in the name of Jesus (Acts 2:38), are forgiven of past sins. Then as we walk in the light of God’s Word, the blood of Jesus continues to cleanse us from sin (1 John 1:7).


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Plea For Doctrinal Purity

There was never a more devilish doctrine than that doctrinal purity is unimportant.  None can read the New Testament with an unbiased eye and keep from seeing this emphasis.  It begins with such representative statements from Christ as, “If ye abide in my word, then are ye truly my disciples” (John 8:31) and does not end until the final words of the sacred volume (Revelations 22: 18-19) “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

No New Testament author neglects this emphasis. The motive of this strong and consistent theme is the truth that the Word of God, through His Son, is God’s spiritual “seed” (Luke 8:11) “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. If the seed is faithfully preserved and planted it can produce nought but the plant imprinted by God on its spiritual “genes” (Galatians 6:7) Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.  Moreover, when the seed germinates and produces God’s plant, that spiritual plant, the church, can remain pure, healthy, and strong only so long as it feeds upon the pure food of the Gospel.  Apostasy cannot be defined apart from doctrinal corruption.  When one or one hundred saints move away from Christ it is because they have embraced a different, perverted “gospel” (Gal 1:6-7)  I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

The reason why any congregation today is different from that of even one generation ago is that the doctrine has been changed. The two— the doctrine and the church — are inseparably linked.  When the doctrine is changed a vicious cycle, almost impossible to interrupt, is set in motion and the more the church changes, causing yet further digressions by the church. This is why the inspired men were so boldly militant in the preservation of Divine truth.  As they were, so must we be set for the defense of the Gospel, always ready to give answer for our hope and to contend earnestly for the faith (Phi 1:16; 1 Pet 3:15; Jude 3).  This is precisely why Paul made his powerful appeal on this theme to the saints at Rome: (Rom 16:17)” Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.”

No better illustration can be found of the consequences of ignoring this appeal than the total apostasy of the church at Rome.  The congregation in Rome remained a church of Christ only so long as she faithfully preached and practiced apostolic doctrine.  When tolerance of false doctrine and its teachers began to prevail, the loss of her Scriptural identity was sealed; the seed was corrupted.

 

Lord,
Make me an
Instrument of thy peace
Where there is hatred,
Let me sow
Love;
Where there is injury,
Pardon;
Where there is doubt,
Faith
Where there is despair,
Hope
Where there is darkness,
Light
And where there is sadness,
Joy