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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A Father’s Love

Phil Littleford took his son on an Alaskan fishing trip with two other men.  In a quest to find some running salmon, they flew their seaplane into a secluded bay. The fishing was everything they had dreamed. When they had finished for the day, their plane was on dry ground. The fluctuating tide had left their plane twenty-three feet from the water, so they cooked some of their fish for dinner and slept in the plane.

When they awoke…. the tide had come in and their plane was drifting in the water.  They cranked the engine and took off. Unknown to them, one of the pontoons had been punctured and was filled with water. The extra weight caused the seaplane to crash within moments. Everyone survived, BUT they had no safety equipment on board. They used their waders as floating devices, but the frigid water was a deadly threat. The current was too strong for Dr. Littleford’s twelve-year-old son to swim against. The other two men fought their way against the tide and barely made it to shore.

The two survivors looked back from shore to see Dr. Littleford and his son, Mark, being swept out to sea, arm-in-arm. The Coast Guard reported that they probably lasted no more than an hour in the freezing waters.  The hypothermia would chill the body functions and put them to sleep. Mark, with a smaller body mass, would fall asleep first and die in his father’s arms. Dr. Littleford could have made it to shore, BUT that would have meant abandoning his son.  He chose to die with his boy!

You and I were lost in the sea of SIN!  Too weak to fight against sin’s current,

WE were without hope.  Seeing our terrible plight, the Heavenly Father did NOT abandon us, but rather He sent His Son to our rescue.  The Son of God reached out to us urging us to cling to Him for our salvation.  In order to rescue us from our sins, the Son of God gave His life.  He died – so that we might live!

Through His sacrificial death, the Son of God CONTINUES to reach out to ALL who are drowning in the sea of SIN.  ONLY those who “GRASP” His offer of salvation are saved.

To be saved… one must:
Embrace the truth that Jesus Christ is the Son of God
“And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” (Acts 16:31)

Repent of sin
“And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: 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.” (Acts 17:30-31)

Confess Jesus
“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.” (Romans 10:9-10)

Be immersed in water for the forgiveness of sins
“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.” (Acts 2:38)

AND continue to cling to the Savior in obedience to His will
“Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.” (Revelation 2:10)

The love of the Father is too GREAT to be comprehended, but too IMPORTANT to be refused!

Will YOU not reach up to Him through your trusting obedience for salvation?

Daddy Had A Little Boy

Daddy had a little boy,
His soul was white as snow.
He never went to Bible class,
“cause Daddy wouldn’t go.

He never heard the stories of Jesus
That thrilled the childish mind;
While other children went to class,
This child was left behind.

And as he grew from babe to youth,
Dad saw to his dismay
A soul that once was snowy white
Become a dingy gray.

Realizing his son was lost,
Dad tried to win him back;
But now the soul that once was white
Had turned an ugly black.

Dad even started back to church,
And Bible study too,
He begged the preacher,  “Isn’t there
A thing that you can do?”

The preacher tried and failed, and said,
“We’re just too far behind,
I tried to tell you years ago,
But you would pay no mind.”

And so another soul is lost,
That once was white as snow;
Bible study would have helped-
But Daddy wouldn’t go.

Written by David A. Sargent

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The Matured Christian Man

That constantly changing river is more like life than we want to think.  Philosophers tell us that the only unchanging element of life is change. Thomas Wolfe wrote a novel called You Can’t Go Home Again.  The person who goes home is not “you”; you have changed since you lived there.  The place where you go is not “home” either; it has also changed since you left.

We are always changing, and the world is always changing.  How can we remain true to Christ as we navigate the turbulence of change?  We should first understand those changes, and second, be equipped to deal with the spiritual challenges of each period of life.

Developmental psychologists today usually divide adulthood into three stages: early adulthood; middle adulthood, and late adulthood.  Each stage has its own “developmental tasks” and spiritual challenges.  The Bible deals with the special temptations and tasks of each stage.  We touched on the Early Adulthood in the last  issue, and will deal with the Middle Adulthood (30—60 yr) in this issue.

From about thirty or forty to about fifty-five or sixty-five (no consensus exists as to when mid-life begins or ends), a man experiences numerous physical changes.  He can no longer run as fast or jump as high as he once could; he is likely to put on weight.

And either lose his hair or see it turn grey.  He may be sick more often.  While his earning power is likely to be high, he is also likely to experience stress—stress connected with getting older, as well as economic, emotional, and psychological stress.

The “developmental tasks” of middle age are these:

  1. Achieving adult civic and social responsibility
  2. Assisting teen-age children to become responsible and happy adults
  3. Developing adult leisure-time activities
  4. Relating oneself to one’s spouse as a person
  5. Accepting and adjusting to the physiological changes of middle-age
  6. Reaching and maintaining satisfactory performance in one’s career
  7. Adjusting to aging parents
  8. Acquiring a set of values and an ethical system as a guide to behaviour.

 

A mid-life transition typically occurs between thirty-five and forty-five, with individual variations.  This is a time of crisis, leading to change which may be closely associated with occupational factors.  In some cases, it leads to “serious emotional fall-out.  At this time some men, seeing old age peeking around the corner, feel obliged to prove that they are still young—by changing their appearance, for instance, or by having an affair with a younger woman.

The Bible does not, in any one passage, seem to differentiate between three ages of life, unless John refers to three ages when he addresses “children,” “young men,” and “fathers” in the same passage .

12 “I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name’s sake.”
13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.
14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.”
(1 John 2:12-14)

The primary challenge for the mature Christian man is to provide spiritual leadership for the home and the church and the community.  Some may grow up in Christ and be good, but good for what?  They abstain from sin themselves, but provide no spiritual leadership to help others become pleasing to God.  As the Christian man matures, he should develop the qualities which characterize elders mentioned in I Timothy 3 as well as Titus 1.  Then, with those qualities, he should become a strong servant-leader in the struggle for right.

A second spiritual challenge of middle age is to keep one’s priorities in order.  At this stage of life, a man can easily become addicted to ambition, becoming so set on getting ahead and making money that he neglects what is most important in life: God, the church, his family, and his friends.  At this point in his life, the Christian man especially ought to remember Jesus’ words:  “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33).