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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Too Great A Chasm

Children and even some young adults may not know or remember him, but in the 1970s few people held the American public’s imagination like Evel Knievel.  The motorcycle daredevil saw his name and patriotic colour scheme stamped on everything from lunchboxes to albums to movies to an Evel Knievel action figure that briefly outsold Barbie and G.I. Joe.  His jump attempts over cars, buses, fountains, shark tanks and, most memorably, the Snake River Canyon in Idaho, drew millions of viewers to Knievel television specials and sold out venues like the Houston Astrodome and London’s Wembley Stadium.

Consider, for a moment, his jump attempt at Snake River Canyon in Idaho …

On September 8, 1974, after two unsuccessful unmanned test flights, Evel decided to keep his word to his fans and risked his life in an attempt to clear a 1,718-foot chasm of the Snake River Canyon. In place of his signature Harley Davidson, Evel attempted this jump in a specially constructed rocket-powered “Skycycle.”  Seconds after his sky cycle cleared the edge of the canyon, his parachute ejected prematurely.

As fans, family, crew, and a live television audience watched Evel descend 600 feet into the canyon, it appeared he was heading directly for the river.  Landing in the river would have meant certain death. Fortunately, Evel and the sky cycle were saved because they landed on the rocks on the far edge of the river.  Due at least in part to malfunctions in his equipment, the chasm at Snake River Canyon proved to be too great for Evel to cross.

This chasm and Evel’s attempt to clear it reminds us of an even GREATER chasm – one which separates us from God!

God is a HOLY God – “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty” (Isaiah 6:3). Because of His holiness, God is totally “set apart” from sin. His eyes are too pure to look upon evil (Habakkuk 1:13).

Man, on the other hand, is a SINFUL being – Isaiah warned others about the effects of SIN: “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear. But your iniquities have SEPARATED you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear” (Isaiah 59:1-2).

The chasm between sinful man and a holy God is TOO GREAT for man to cross by his own merits! Morality isn’t sufficient! Good works won’t bridge the gap!  Only the CROSS of Jesus can span this great chasm between God and man caused by SIN. Jesus died on the cross so that you and I might be forgiven of our sins and reconciled to a holy God.

Those who place their trust in God (Hebrews 11:6),  But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

repent of sin (2 Corinthians 7:9-10),  Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death,

confess Jesus before men (Romans 10:9-10),  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. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

are baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sin (Acts 2:38),  Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

and live faithfully to Him (1 John 1:7),  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

are cleansed of their sins and reconciled to God because of Jesus’ atoning sacrifice.

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). We CROSS by way of the CROSS !

ONLY through your submission to Jesus will you ever be able to reach God who beckons to us from the other side! Won’t you CROSS over today?

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Do not give up!

Life is filled with ups and downs.  If we are going through a patch of rough time, if failure is what we are experiencing right now, do not give up. Many great men of old have been labelled “Failures”, “Losers”, “Hopeless” etc.  If they had believed what others think and said about them, they would really be living up to the expectations of these people.  But they became “Great” because they didn’t give up.  Look at some of these great men:

When Peter J. Daniel was in the fourth grade, his teacher, Mrs. Phillips, constantly said, “Peter J. Daniel, you’re no good, you’re a bad apple and you’re never going to amount to anything.”  Peter was totally illiterate until he was 26.  A friend stayed up with him all night and read him a copy of Think and Grow Rich.  Now he owns the street corners he used to fight on and just published his latest book: Mrs. Phillips, You Were Wrong.

Beethoven handled the violin awkwardly and preferred playing his own compositions instead of improving his technique.  His teacher called him hopeless as a composer.

The parents of the famous opera singer Enrico Caruso wanted him to be an engineer.  His teachers said he had no voice at all and could not sing.

Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor for lack of ideas.  Walt Disney also went bankrupt several times before he built Disneyland.

Thomas Edison’s teachers said he was too stupid to learn anything.

Albert Einstein did not speak until he was four years old and didn’t read until he was seven.  His teacher described him as “mentally slow, unsociable and adrift forever in his foolish dreams.”  He was expelled and refused admittance to Zurich Polytechnic School.

Louis Pasteur was only a mediocre pupil in undergraduate studies and ranked 15 out of 22 in chemistry.

Isaac Newton did very poorly in grade school.

Leo Tolstoy, author of War and Peace, flunked out of college.  He was described as “both unable and unwilling to learn.

Henry Ford failed and went broke five times before he finally succeeded.

Winston Churchill failed sixth grade. He did not become Prime Minister of England until he was 62, and then only after a lifetime of defeats and setbacks. His greatest contributions came when he was a “senior citizen.”

Eighteen publishers turned down Richard Bach’s Jonathan Livingston Seagull, before Macmillan finally published it in 1970.  By 1975 it had sold more than seven million copies in the U.S. alone.

From these numerous examples of “failures” dare we give up on ourselves when we face temporal setbacks?  If we do, then we will truly become failures.  Did not our Lord promise to go through life with us and help us in time of need?

Did we not as children of God have the privilege to pray for help?  We must never give up but hold on to the end, even as we have the Lord to go through life with us.

(Jos 1:9) Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.  God has promised that we are not left as orphans without help and without love. (Eph 3:20)  “Our God is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” (Heb 4:16) Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

If all the world were broad and flat
How dull the scene would be!
We’d wish instead for hills and vales
With changing views to see.

If all of life were free from care,
Devoid of tears and pain,
There’d be no failure or success —
No summits to attain.

But life is filled with ups and downs,
With happiness and woe.
Our joys are like the mountaintops;
Our sorrows lie below.

The Lord who made the lofty peaks
Designed the valleys too.
And He is there at every turn
To guide our passage through.

by Amy Clarke Ellis

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Christ, our Passover Lamb

In Exodus chapter twelve we read about the instructions God gave regarding the Passover lamb.  There was to be a lamb for each house.  The lamb was to be without blemish and a male.  In verse six, we read, “And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.”

Notice that there was only one lamb for each household. But God said the whole assembly shall kill it.  It was impossible for every person to kill the lamb.  Obviously only a few individuals were actually involved in the killing of the lamb.  But every person was supportive of the killing of the lamb.  No one stepped forward and stopped the killing of the lamb.  By their presence and support they were considered as being a part of the killing.

Christ is our Passover Lamb. The lamb of the Old Testament Passover was simply a type of the Christ to come.  Every person in the church considers themselves partly responsible for the death of Christ on the cross.  He died for our sins.  He died for the sins of every person.  If we did not sin, he would not have died for our sins.  So every time someone sins, they are a partaker in the killing of Jesus.

But, everyone also can partake of the blessings of the Lamb of God. When one is a Christian one can partake of the communion, the Lord’s Supper.  This is eaten every first day of the week to commemorate our Lord’s sacrificial death for our sins.

There was an old story written that Abraham Lincoln went down to the slave block and saw a girl being auctioned off to the highest bidder.  Lincoln joined in the bidding.  As the slave girl looked at this man bidding on her, she figured he was just another white man, going to buy her and then abuse her.

Lincoln won the bid and as he was walking away with his newly purchased property, he said, “Young lady…. you are FREE!” She said, “What does that mean?”

“It means you are FREE.”

“Does that mean,” she asked, “that I can say whatever I want to say?”
Lincoln said, “Yes, my dear, you can say whatever you want to say.”

“Does that mean,” she asked, “that I can be whatever I want to be?”
Lincoln said, “Yes, you can be whatever you want to be.”

“Does that mean I can go wherever I want to go?”
He said, “Yes, you can go wherever you want to go.”

Then the girl, with tears streaming down her face, said, “Then I will go with YOU.”

Jesus said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits SIN is a SLAVE of SIN” (John 8:34).

ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23), therefore all are slaves of sin, under its bondage.  But when sin put us on Satan’s auction block, Jesus paid the price for our redemption (literally, “bought us back”) with His own blood. “Therefore, IF the Son makes you free, you shall be FREE INDEED!” (John 8:36)

Jesus redeems those who accept His offer through:

faith (Acts 16:31), repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confession of Jesus (Romans 10:9-10), and baptism (immersion) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16). Jesus will

CONTINUE to redeem those who will CONTINUE to follow Him (1 John 1:7).

IN HIM we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7). “And He DIED for ALL, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again” (2 Corinthians 5:15).

When we comprehend the riches of His grace extended to us, we, too, will say, “Then I will go with you.”

How can WE not follow a Savior like that?

What can wash away my sins?

Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

What can make me whole again?

Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

Oh, precious is the flow

That makes me white as snow.

No other fount I know.

Nothing but the blood of Jesus.