Have you ever wondered where was God during the many years the Children of Israel were in captivity and under the cruelty of Egyptian taskmasters? Have you ever wondered from time to time where is God when you, your family or friends are having difficulties in life? We can learn how God delivers from the story of the exodus.
Is there an event or celebration in your life which you particularly remember fondly? The night after the Passover is of special significance and observance to many Christians. What is this night to be much observed?
Australians are indeed embracing Halloween in greater numbers and spending more money on this festival. Halloween decorations are more readily available in the shops and online and people are embracing this festivity with greater enthusiasm.
It all looks like so much fun and seems so harmless.
The Smyrna church had something of which Jesus took particular notice. It was not their standing in this world with respect to this world’s wealth or position. They were rich in something else that was so much more esteemed by Jesus Christ. How did He regard them as rich?
The Apostle Paul writes: "Therefore let us keep the feast; not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” Because of, the sacrifice that Jesus made we should go on and keep the feast “with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” What feast is this?
Jesus chose to “taste death for every person.” He experienced suffering of unimaginable magnitude, and He died – not because He sinned, but because we sinned. In this there is no greater love. In this God’s great love for you and for me is manifest.
Does it really matter to God whether we adopt just any customs of the world? God loves pagan festivals; His love excludes no one, nor their festivals .... right? Let’s consider what God reveals in His Word – the Holy Scriptures.
Have you ever been to the south coast of New Zealand? It is extraordinarily beautiful and has an ecology quite unique from other parts of the world. It was explained to us by a naturalist that the animals particularly in this area evolved and adapted to their environment. Evolutionary theory is a cop out for serious scientific analysis. We must remember that it was God who declare it ‘good’ at creation and will accomplish everything He plans to do.
Are you amongst those who are genuinely seeking the truth or a church that is teaching the true beliefs of the Bible? Have you been challenged regarding the origin of christian festivals such as Christmas and Easter? You may have heard or read that these festivals were introduced into christian worship in Rome around the 4th century AD. Given their late establishment, this obviously meant that neither Jesus nor any of the apostles kept these days.
If so, then what days did they keep as festivals? What are the Festivals of God?
How much do we REALLY believe in God? Enough to obey Him and all His laws? Enough to trust in His intervention and help no matter what the external circumstances are like? The amount we obey Him and the amount that we worry provide a window into our own souls of how much faith we REALLY have in God.
“Thus says the Lord, ‘Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, let not the mighty man glory in his might, nor let the rich man glory in his riches.....” This is the beginning of scriptures in Jeremiah, directing us to consider what or who should be glorified. In what or who do we really glory?
We don’t like to “feel bad” about ourselves. We have devised many ways within our lifestyles to ‘paper over’ sin. We have lived in such a way for so long that pain is the result. It is in humankind, however to want to always be good, no matter how many bad things we do.
Do we acknowledge and embrace the free gift of forgiveness which only God can grant us through his Son, Jesus Christ?
“Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be as wool.”
This is one of the most striking elements of the gospel message and makes the Kingdom of God possible. To have your sins forgiven freely, by the Great God who has individually approached us, is the greatest hallmark of His being.
How can we be sure that Jesus is the author and the finisher of our faith? He is the one who starts our path towards having a relationship with our Heavenly Father and He will also see us through to the finish.
Jesus Christ is represented in christmas as a babe in a manger, surrounded by devoted parents and a few animals in a field near the town of Bethlehem complete with a star above. Is this the complete story about our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ?
God has in mind a wonderful future for all of mankind. As God’s grace was shown at the beginning of creation so, too, will we see God’s grace at the end of the age. God’s plan will stand and come to pass as He said. Whatever dilemma we are in, God will see us through. We know that there is a purpose for everything that happens, and God knows all things.
With this in mind, do we have any responsibility toward God and our fellow man?
As it has been my custom for many years, I plan once again to obey God’s command and observe the Feast of Tabernacles with my family.
God commanded the Feast Days for His people because they keep us in touch with the knowledge of His great plan and wonderful purpose for all mankind. We are reminded of God’s great purpose for mankind through the faithful observance of the Feasts of the Lord.
Have you ever wondered why the Creator God would have any interest in you or me, or in humanity? David asked the very same question – “What is man that You are mindful of him ... the son of man that You visit him?” The answer to this question has gone generally unknown or misunderstood throughout human history. When we pause, meditate on and embrace the answer, our lives will be forever changed. Dare to read on?
God is sharing a great message with the world through His Holy Day plan. Keeping the Feast of Firstfruits is one of the most encouraging and inspiring of God's Holy Days. What do you know about the Feast of Firstfruits also known as Pentecost?
We pass into the new year with story after story of tragedy after tragedy, sadness after sadness. As we move closer to the "end of this age," as the disciples of Christ expressed it, we of all people need to strive in hope because that hope is founded in the One who sustains all.
Halloween is an observance that is becoming a growing trend in Australia. Every year at Halloween well-meaning parents dress their children in grotesque and ghoulish costumes, and it was no different this year. Costume parties are held and many children go trick-or-treating.
But is Halloween really harmless? Who and what's behind this bizarre holiday?
Many go through life never knowing about one of the greatest freely given gifts -- and one we are told to ask for: "If any of you lacks wisdom ....". We are told that God possessed wisdom before anything was ever created and before He embarked on His great work to have children for Himself. We don't naturally have Godly wisdom. We are told we should ask for, indeed, seek for this kind of wisdom from the only source available – God Himself.
How will you fare this coming year in the world today? We need Jesus Christ to be the ruler of our lives and for Him to be present with us. Contrary to what many may think and teach, Jesus Christ is not in the world, trying to save the world at this time. As we live in world rife with danger and temptation, we need to have Him fulfil His deepest desire - to dwell with us and be our God. Is that where Jesus Christ is?
Most people are unaware that God has given us seven holy festivals to celebrate throughout the year. Mainstream christianity keeps festivals such as christmas and easter which were never celebrated by those names until centuries after Jesus Christ had lived and died. In fact Jesus and the apostles in the decades following the crucifixion didnot keep christmas or easter but kept the holy festivals commanded by God. What do you know about these holy festivals in particular the Feast of Ingathering?
This past Saturday was a spiritually uplifting but physical challenging day. Why, you may ask. Not only was it a weekly Sabbath but also an annual Sabbath of God – the Day or Atonement. Did you know we are commanded to fast on the Day of Atonement?
Do you love being a human? I do! We can experience love, peace and purpose. We can conceive of a future life in a future time and a future world. We can make choices and learn from those choices. We can believe and have hope in someone beyond our human capacity.
Not only do I love being human, I love being alive.
I learned about the Sabbath and Holy Days when my mother, twin sister and I observed them for a year at home before I attended College. The Sabbath – the seventh day of the week - was the highlight of my week.
God created the Sabbath to be a blessing for us. One of the blessings of the Sabbath is the opportunity to assemble together on that day. Fellowshipping with the people of God is truly a great blessing from God that the Sabbath day affords. 1 John 1:3 reveals that we also have fellowship with the Father and with Jesus Christ. The Sabbath is also a special time of fellowshipping with God. In God's word He describes of a time in the future when all humankind will worship God on the Sabbath. What a wonderful day that will be!!
For years a man sat in the way where people passed to the Temple. He was born crippled, and relied on the pity of those going to the temple to worship to offer him some token of kindness. It never occurred to him that he would receive a miracle of kindness. The Apostle Peter gave him all that he had.
Why did Peter choose to heal the man on that particular day? We all need not only physical healing but also spiritual.
Do you sometimes feel inadequate or unworthy? by Joe Rivers
Do you sometimes feel inadequate or unworthy? Lots of self help gurus attempt to address questions like this one but the true, life changing answer isn't found in the latest best seller. It's found in a simple little story you were told as a child.
Rain, in the Word of God is something God sends or withholds. by Bill Bradford
Our weather scientists are able to explain weather patterns that affect our great agricultural industry in Australia. They are able to predict the amount of moisture we will receive from year to year through measurement of ocean temperatures, among other data. Predicting life giving rain leaves out one great factor. Rain, in the Word of God is something God sends or withholds.
" ... many people pray without any sense of assurance that there is a living and powerful God who hears their prayers, or that they are praying to a God who has offered forgiveness for their sins ...." commented Barna from the George Barna research company.
I remember the first time somebody asked me about my religious beliefs. I was about fourteen-years-old. For those of you who are past that age, think back to those awkward teenage years, when peer pressure was a daily issue, and the thoughts of those around you were constantly voiced; sometimes with detrimental effects and sometimes positive ones.
God knew how it would all work out in the end. He knew the conclusion of His works, before He even began! God, because of who He is, has the intent, the will and the power to carry out everything and anything He purposes! So, what is His plan...?
The other day I saw a statue of a headless horse. I don't know the reason for it being headless. As it was displayed in a park in public view, I would think there was a legitimate reason for it being headless. It may be that those who commissioned the statue ran out of money. Perhaps it was vandalism? Whatever the reason, it was quite thought-provoking.
What lies ahead as we enter the 2020s? Major changes are taking place in the nation and around the world. What do they mean? Where are these trends taking us? And most importantly, what do they mean for you and will you be ready? You won’t find answers to these questions in the normal news sources, but you will in the pages of your Bible. In this issue of Beyond Today magazine, we look at these key questions and answers.
Many believers celebrate Easter as a way to honour Jesus Christ's resurrection. But Easter's roots stretch long ago into pre-Christian paganism. The Bible alone shows a different set of celebrations—the Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread—that give us the story Easter doesn't.