Afterthoughts

Only personal ideas about general things, spiritual or secular. A keepsake of some realizations I especially encountered in my student-life.


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Just as the days of Noah

The Lord’s speaking these days mostly concerns His coming back. For this there is the exhortation to be watchful by beseeching as seen in Luke 21:36

But be awatchful at every time, bbeseeching that you would 1prevail to 2escape 3all these things which are about to happen and 4cstand before the Son of Man.

Several verses in the New Testament also describes what the Lord’s second coming is like and these verses say that it will be like the days of Noah.

37 aFor just as the 1days of Noah were, so will the bcoming of the Son of Man be.

38 1For as they were in those days before the flood, 2eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day in which aNoah entered into the ark.

1aAnd even as it happened in the 2bdays of Noah, so will it be also in the cdays of the Son of Man.

In the days of Noah until now, the people are still doing the same thing – eating, drinking, marriage, and given in marriage. But the instrumental thing here which brought the Lord’s judgment on the time of Noah was the building of the ark that eventually became their salvation. They entered into the ark and they were saved from the flood, the judgment.

1Who had formerly disobeyed when the long-suffering of God waited in the days of aNoah, while the ark was being prepared; entering into which, a few, that is, eight souls, were 2brought safely through 3by bwater.

Today, what brings the Lord back is also a building. The ark typifies today’s built-up church. Being in the church is our salvation from the coming judgment to the world. The church is also our refuge. In order to participate in this building, the need is not just for us to read our Bible, to beseech, to be spiritual, but much more for us to be built-up with others especially in our small groups. When Daniel overcame by setting his heart not to be defiled, he wasn’t alone, rather, he had his three companions. Likewise, if we would be the overcomers to hasten the Lord’s return, we must be ones who are built-up with others. Unless, the church is built-up, the Lord can’t come back. Our Bible reading, our praying, our loving the Lord and pursuing of Him are not merely for us but must be for His building. If we love the Lord, not only do we keep His words but also we love those whom He loves. Since He loved the church that He even gave gave Himself up for her (Ephesians 5:25), how much more should we, the constituents of His beloved bride, love one another (John 13:34,35;15:12,13,17;Romans 12:10).

Since we all love the Lord’s appearing, may we all give ourselves for His building!

(This post is based on my enjoyment received from a brother’s sharing during our collegian’s Campus Meeting on Nov. 12, ’12, monday 3-5pm).


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Let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement…of spirit..

Just these past few days, I was bothered by what a brother shared concerning a very well-known fantasy magical novel-turned-to-movie series. Before that he shared about preaching the gospel and went to the matter that his son was able to pass the test because of someone that has told him about sorcery… It means that his son was able to never read even a single book of that novel neither has he seen any movie of it since he knew that it was about sorcery. The word “passed the test” sank to me deeply and I thought I was really so unfortunate that in my case, I’ve read all the books of the series and have even seen the movies. That was when I was in my 4th yr in high school. Now, four years after, I just knew that what I did wasn’t a good idea.

I then wondered how can there be something wrong with what I did when for me, I never intended to practice magic or sorcery or divination, if there really is, neither do I even believe in them, and I only intended to know the story since at that time, every one else is so hooked to it and I can’t afford myself to be left behind.

I have been asking this question before and it seems that I don’t get satisfied with the answers I receive. This question is that if practice of sorcery is abominable to God and that touching those things defiles the spirit, then how does reading or watching a story about it defiles my spirit if I don’t even practice it myself, neither believed in it?

An elder brother helped me to see the truth behind this matter and have pointed me to some verses. They are enlisted in the following:

  • Lev. 19:26 You shall not eat anything with blood, nor shall you practice divination or soothsaying. (27) You shall not round the corners of your heads, nor shall you mar the edges of your beard. (28) You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor inscribe any marks upon you; I am Jehovah. (20:27) If there is a man or a woman who is a medium or a spiritist, they shall surely be put to death. They shall stone them with stones; their blood shall be upon them.
  • Deu 18:9 When you enter the land which Jehovah your God is giving you, you shall not learn to do things according to the abominations of those nations. (10) There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or daughter pass through fire; anyone who performs divination, practices soothsaying, or interprets omens; or anyone who employs sorcery (11) Or casts spells; or anyone who consults a spirit of the dead or a familiar spirit or inquires of the dead; (12) For everyone who does these things is an abomination to Jehovah; and on account of these abominations Jehovah your God is dispossessing them from before you. (13) You shall be blameless toward Jehovah your God. (14) For these nations whom you are dispossessing listen to those who practice soothsaying and to those who perform divination, but Jehovah your God has not allowed you to do so.
  • Isa. 47:9 – But these two things will come upon you/ Suddenly, in one day:/ Loss of children and widowhood;/ In full measure they will come upon you/ In spite of the multitude of your sorceries;/ In spite of the great power of your spells.
  • 2Cor. 7:1 – Therefore since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and of spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
  • Gal 5:19 – And the works of the flesh are manifest, which are such things as fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, (20) Idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, divisions, sects,…
  • Rev. 9:21, 1Sam.28:7-14

From these verses, especially from their footnotes (in the Recovery version of the Bible), we can see that doing something to our own will is actually as evil as contacting an evil spirit, a rebellion against God. By simply reading and watching the story, whose will was obeyed? Surely, it wasn’t God’s.

In Acts 16:6, we can also see that forbidding is the Holy Spirit’s leading. As I continued to watch similar movies related to magic after I was aware of the verses above, though I may still question myself of the same question above, but there is the undeniable bothering inside me which led me to ask another brother who had been in the church life for a long time.

And this is what he said. ‘Even though you simply read the words, but in every word there is the element of something. As long as it is not God’s, it is Satan’s. By reading them, you have touched an element of Satan. If your mind keeps on questioning, then you lack faith in the Lord. It is by faith that we are saved and by faith that we will be delivered. But everything has something to do with our growth in life.’

I simply could not accept how immature I was. I couldn’t hold my tears back in realizing this. As I have been struggling with my mind, my spirit was there actually giving me a ‘bothering’ sense to which I do not want to take heed. It actually doesn’t want me to touch those things again and again as if I hadn’t known the Lord, but I regret that I neglected it just because I followed my reasonings. I may have not practiced anything related to sorcery – divination, soothsaying, etc- but by simply reading or watching about them, that is to “touch” them, a dispensing have been received that is not of life. Every word is a dispensing. The brother even told me that brother Lee once said that even if you don’t understand the Word, just read it and you will be watered. Oh, how we should consider our ways even in the words that we ‘touch’! May we don’t just do anything according to the fashion of this age, “but be transformed by the renewing of the mind that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and well pleasing and perfect.”(Rom.12:2) And may we just redeem our time to read the Word of God that we would then be just “with unveiled face, beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord”(2Cor. 3:18)!

I will also never forget the word the elder brother said. What is past, is past! What is ahead, is ahead and we have an opportunity to follow the Lord! 🙂..

May the Lord Jesus bless us all in our church life as His testimony on the earth today.


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Why should you “Consider your ways”

This is my very first blog and I chose it’s title to be ‘Consider your ways’ taken from a verse in the Bible, Haggai 1:5.

Now, what’s with this title?

The book of Haggai is the 37th book in the Bible belonging to the books of the Minor Prophets and is one of the shortest book having only two chapters at all. It was written at the time when the children of Israel had returned from their captivity from Babylon during the second year of king Darius of Medo-Persia. This book unveils what was on God’s heart regarding the delay of the building of His house.

It is striking for me that in this book Jehovah had said, “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your panelled-up houses, while this house lies waste?”(v.4) which is why in the following verse is the conclusion “Consider your ways”.

Today, rich or poor, all of us wants to be in a well-roofed nice house, a place where we can have full rest and satisfaction. How much more our God is! No wonder He said in Isaiah 6:6, “Heaven is my throne, and the earth the footstool for My feet. Where then is the house that you will build for Me, and where is the place for My rest?”

Then the next verses in Haggai reveal the consequences of the people having been ignorant to Him. Verse 6 says, “You have sown much but you bring in little; you eat but there is no satisfaction; you drink but there is no being filled with drink; you dress yourselves, but there is no warmth in doing so; and he who earns wages, earns wages to put them into a bag with holes”. Verses 9-11 continues, “You looked for much, and yet it amounted to little; and when you brought it home, I blew on it. Why? declares Jehovah of hosts. Because of My house that lies waste while you each run to your own house. (10)Therefore over you the heavens withhold their dew, and the earth withholds its yield. (11)Indeed I called for a drought upon the land and upon the mountains and upon the grain and upon the new wine and upon the fresh oil and upon that which the ground brings forth and upon man and upon beast and upon all the toil of the hands.”

Isn’t this word from Jehovah clear? Why do we toil and gather less? Why do we seem ‘unblessed’ or unfruitful in anything we do? As believers in Christ, our hearts must only be set on one thing, the thing which is on God’s heart, His house. All our attainments, success, achievements or whatever is actually not for us, but for the sake of His building. And we need to see that the reason why we suffer is due to our not taking care for His building. For this, we need to consider our ways.

A more practical view concerning Jehovah’s rebuke is on the Life-Study of the  Minor Prophets message 31:

  • The word “run” in verse 9 indicates that the people were busy caring for their own houses. Today some saints are so busy caring for their own houses that they have no time to attend the meetings. As we consider this, we need to realize that in the entire universe there is no such thing as neutrality. We must be absolute. We must either take care of our houses first or take care of the Lord’s house first. My point here is that we need to learn to save some time for the Lord’s interests. How many sinners are waiting for our visitation? How many saints, especially younger ones, are waiting for our cherishing and nourishing? We may excuse ourselves today, but we need to consider how we will answer the Lord Jesus when He comes. We may have many relatives who are unsaved. Their being unsaved may be our fault, not theirs. If so, when the Lord comes to settle accounts with us (Matt. 25:19), He will surely rebuke us. It has been difficult for us to get the increase, not mainly because of our environment but because of our excuses.

In line with this, we also need to be clear that His building does not refer to a physical one but to God’s spiritual building, the church, which is composed of His believers expressed locally as the local churches in every city. Since the building refers to people, this means then that our need is to care for the people around us, our relatives, classmates, colleages, and friends for the gospel. Brother Lee has a word for this:

  • “I hope that all the dear saints will be busy in going out to visit people and in contacting their relatives, classmates, and colleagues for the gospel. All the saints should be occupied by the Lord Jesus in preaching the gospel, feeding the new believers, and taking care of others. I hope that concerning this the whole atmosphere and environment among us will be revolutionized. (http://www.ministrybooks.org/books.cfm?id=22DBAD

Oh, may we be delivered from all our excuses! May we be absolute for the Lord! May we all redeem our time to take up the Lord’s charge – “Go up to the mountain and bring wood and build the house, and I will take pleasure in it and will be glorified, says Jehovah”(v.8). Let us not delay His building work! Let us consider now our ways!