The church is Sardis was a happy and active church, but there was great deadness in their souls, and in their services, and many were in a disordered and lifeless state. Their works are good but not "perfect before God" (v2), which means hallowed and not filled with holy desires and suitable devotion of soul to God. The encouragement was a reward of white garments if they overcome, and not to remove their names in the Book of life. Philadelphia was a faithful church that kept the command of the Lord to persevere even in time of persecutions (v10). The door of the kingdom shall be opened always to them, and no one can shut it off, but Christ alone. Christ promises a glorious reward to the victorious believers, a monumental pillar in the temple of God, and shall write the new Name of Christ. Laodicea was a lukewarm church, neither cold nor hot, worst because God expects that Christians should be earnest and unchangeable in their faith and purpose. Christ told them to buy gold from Him that they may become rich, and ointment that their eyes may be opened. The Lord Jesus still graciously comes to the door of the hearts of sinners. Those who open to him shall enjoy his presence. God bless.
Tuesday, May 30, 2017
This chapter was addressed to four churches, with warnings and encouragements. Ephesus church is famous for good works, perseverance, patience, and more labor, but have left their first love. First love is our passion for daily meditation of the Bible, desire to attend the fellowship, Bible Study and training, and aspiration to grow more in relationship with Christ. When we begin to ignore these, and justify our works, that's it! Repent quickly, because the promise of the Lord is tree of life (v7). Smyrna was a persecuted church, but the Lord told them not to be shaken by the outside force, because the reward is enormous, crown of life (v10). Pergamos was a faithful church, but they compromise their faith by pleasing false brethren that followed the doctrine of Balaam and Nicolaitans. The church received gifts even though these false brethren were immoral and evil doers. Hidden manna and white stone with new name are at stake if they repent (v17). Thyatira is known for good works, patience, and service, but they allowed the erroneous teaching of Jezebel, that immoral woman and idol worshipper. The Lord promised them of power over the nations if they repent. Christ intention for His Church is to be pure, holy, faithful and without blemish upon His return. Let's strive for that. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:36 AM
Monday, May 29, 2017
The church of Jesus Christ was experiencing severe persecutions during the time, and the believers were afraid of their future destiny. Christ spoke and showed the vision to John and asked him to write the things that He will show him. This book is God's message to the seven churches in Asia Minor (present day Istanbul), and all the churches in all generations, for "the things that are now happening and the things that will happen" (1:9). God blessed those who read this book, listen to His message and obey it by heart. In the midst of trials, Jesus Christ is in control, because He is the First and the Last, Alpha and Omega, who is, who was and who is to come, whose hair were as white as now, eyes like flame of fire, feet were like fine brass, and voice as the sound of many waters. Many things in this book are symbolic with spiritual meaning, describing the battle between good and evil, light and darkness, believers and nonbelievers, but in the end, Christians will triumph through the word and blood of Christ. Jesus spoke words of comfort and instruction, that we should not fear, but trust in His holy name. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:41 AM
The book of Jude is a warning and encouragement to all believers because there were certain men in the early church that are sowing evil things unnoticed. They were ungodly men, who turned the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Savior Jesus Christ (v4). Using Old Testament characters and stories, Jude spoke about the judgment of the some Israelites that rejected God's words in the wilderness and they all perished. Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed because of immorality, Cain and Balaam were both judged because of evil doings. But Enoch went to heaven because He walked with God in all his life. Therefore, let us build up ourselves on our most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit always (v20). Our beloved Jesus is able to keep us from falling. God bless.
Friday, May 26, 2017
This epistle is addressed to a converted Gentile named Gaius, for his piety and hospitality, especially to the ministers of the Lord. Grace with healthy body and purity of the heart are rich companions, and the prosperity of the souls is the greatest blessing from heaven. Good Christians will rejoice in the prosperity of others, and they are glad to hear of the grace and goodness of fellow believers. In this epistle, John exposed the bad attitude of some people that pretend to be Christians but having selfish ambition. Diotrephes loves to be the leader, but refuses to have anything to do with John and his companion when they visited their church (v9). Diotrephes was full of pride and ambition, hindering the advancement of the kingdom of God. He pretends to be worker of God, but a companion of wicked people. Demetrius, on the other hand, has a good testimony, following only what is good (v11). Few are well spoken of by the people, and may those who live at peace with the brethren may also live together with the Lord in heaven. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:39 AM
Thursday, May 25, 2017
This epistle is addressed to a lady, a noble one, commenced for the religious education of her children, and is exhorted to abide and preserve the doctrine of Christ. Families are encouraged and directed in their love and duties at home. This lady was popular and the brethren love her not for her position but for her holiness, love of the brother and sisters in Christ, and obedience to the word of the Lord. But she had been warned, because of the many deceivers who bring some erroneous teaching concerning the person of Christ. Do not receive false teachers into their house but disregard them because they don't abide and practice the words of God. Anyone who did not profess and preach the doctrine of Christ, respecting him as the Son of God, and salvation by him from guilt and sin, are not true Christians. It means that the unity of the believers should be maintained by all means and methods, and should be tend to mutual joy. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:21 AM
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Jesus is the Christ (Savior) and the author of love. Anyone who loves Him is born of God, and the Spirit of God dwells on that person. If we say that we love Him, we should obey His commandments, because that is the proof that we love Jesus Christ. People may say that they love Christ, but their works and obedience to His words will determine if they truly love the Lord. Faith sacrifices the desires of the flesh, and Christians overcome the world by faith. They cannot be satisfied with this world, but looks beyond it, and is still striving and pressing toward heaven. God is Trinity, three in One; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. If people reject this belief, they don't know the true God. We don't discovered this belief, God reveals this to us. Those who refuses to trust and honor Christ as the Son of God will be forever blind, lost, dead in sin, and under condemnation. But those who trust in Him is eternally saved by His blood. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:05 AM
Beware of anti Christian spirits because their message is unscriptural but according to their tastes, so as not to offend the people like them. The world approved them, and they have many followers, the world will love its own, and its own will love it. The true doctrine of Christ and His followers is to lead men from the world to God, the mark against the spirit of error. The Spirit of God is the Spirit of love. God's forgiveness and mercy show that God loves us, and we ought to show these with others. Does love exist between God and sinners? Here was the origin, not that we loved God, but that He freely loved us. His love could not be designed to be fruitless upon us, rather a fruitful one that will last forever. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:07 AM
Monday, May 22, 2017
Very few know the real happiness of being followers of Christ. Christians are content with hard fare here, they are in the land of strangers because their home is in heaven, they walk by faith, and live by hope with earnest desire for the revelation of Jesus Christ. And they shall be transformed into the same image of Christ, and they shall see Him as He is (v2). They don't live in sinful ways, but they follow the way of the Lord. They don't practice lawlessness, but abide with Christ's word always. They avoid the works of the evil one who sinned from the beginning, and joined Christ to destroy the works the devil (v8). The children of God and the children of the devil have their distinct characters, one obeys the words of Jesus, the other hates. This Spirit of God works a change; in all true Christians it changes from the power of Satan to the power of God. We know that we are passed from death to life, and we may know it by the evidences of our faith and obedience in Christ, of which love to God and to our brethren. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:29 AM
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Jesus Christ is our Advocate, Savior and Redeemer, that in every land and through successive generations, all people are invited to come to God through Christ's all-sufficient atonement. The gospel sets the hearts against all sins, and stops the practice of it, at the same time, it gives a relief to the wounded conscience of those who have sinned. He is the Light, and the true believers follow the Light, never to stay in darkness. And those who walk in hatred and enmity to believers, remain in a dark state. As Christians, we have level of maturity, and we have peculiar duties, but there are commands that are common to all, particularly mutual love. Loving God and His people is contrary to loving the world and all that it offers for the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. The things that the world offers fade quickly, but God's love never fail. True Christians are anointed ones, and they can detect the false teachings of Antichrist and antichrist at once. So, let us reject such anti-christian doctrine, and keep away from them as much as we can. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:58 AM
Friday, May 19, 2017
John claimed that he saw with his eyes, touched with his hands, and heard with his ears that the Word of God was manifested in real life. All the apostles had witnessed Christ's wisdom, holiness, miracles, love and mercy during some years, till they saw Him crucified for sinners, and afterwards risen from the dead. If people will believe, they will be forgiven and have free access to God the Father. God is Light and therefore we will have knowledge and understanding, because there is no darkness in Him at all (v5). The communion of believers with the Father and Son is being kept by the influence of the Holy Spirit. Those who walk in darkness, living in sinful ways are not with God, and are not true believers. The message of Christ is to walk with Him no matter what may be the situation; even in time of prosperity or poverty, miseries and peaceful, joy and sadness, because is our Guide and Protector everyday. God is a good Father, that if we made mistakes, ask His forgiveness, and we will be forgiven through the blood of His Son Jesus Christ. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:50 AM
Thursday, May 18, 2017
There will be scoffers and revilers in the last days, mocking the teaching of the Bible and attacking the followers of Christ. They do not believe that Jesus will come again, and therefore they don't fear God's warning. Peter said that the heavens and the earth that we are in now will be destroyed by fire (v7). This is as sure to come, as the power of God can make it. If some people think that God is slow about His promises, there are some reasons to consider; first, one thousand years is only one day to God, second, He is being patient for our sake, because He does not want anyone to be perished, but wants all people to repent (v9). If our focus is only in this earth, what will become of us on the day of judgment, knowing that all these things shall be burned up? Therefore, learn to make a right use of patience because God is patient to us. Read and study the word of God and apply it well, don't twist it as others do that will end up to their own destruction. Labor to know Christ more, that we may be like Him and to love Him better. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:08 AM
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Peter had warned the believers to be watchful against false teachers that seduce their hearts and mind by proclaiming fake words. Such are condemned already, and the wrath of God abides on them. Peter shows examples like, the fallen angels were cast down to hell for their disobedience, people during the time of Noah were destroyed by flood, and the city of Sodom and Gomorrah turned into ashes. It means that God will judge the disobedient but will protect His own people from destructions. These teachers are not different from the way of Balaam who can tell many things about God, but loved the wages of unrighteousness than following the way of God. There is no cure in them except the blood of Christ, therefore Christians should keep close to God's word and stand at a distance from the evil ways. Beware of this proverb: “A dog returns to its vomit, and a washed pig returns to the mud.” God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:45 AM
Tuesday, May 16, 2017
God's divine power has been given to us after accepting Christ as Lord and Savior, with the goal of transforming and sanctifying our whole being. To maintain our faith, we must add knowledge, self control, perseverance, godliness, kindness and love, that we may be able to attain assurance of our calling and election as children of God. Without such, we are still blind and lost in this world. Now, our body is only a tent of our soul, and the nearness of Peter's death made him diligent in the business of life. As for us, we don't know about our last day in this world, but we know that one day we will stop breathing, therefore let us be more dedicated in the service our of Savior, specially now that His appearing is so near. Peter remembered the voice of the Father when He said: "This is My Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (v17). Today, it is the Holy Spirit that inspired the hoy men and women of God as He speaks into their hearts through Scripture. We know that the plainest and simplicity and all the power and expression of the Bible come from God alone. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:59 AM
Monday, May 15, 2017
Peter said that these dispersed, suffering Christians were the flock of God, redeemed by the blood of the Great Shepherd. The leaders should live by examples, not as being lords over those entrusted to them (v3), while the members must submit the their elders and be clothed with humility (v4). All faithful ministers will receive a crown of unfading glory, better and more honorable than all the authority, wealth, and pleasure of the world. Humility preserves peace and order in all Christians churches and societies, but pride disturbs them. In time of difficulties, cast all your cares to Him, and beware of the works of the devil who always walks and roars to seek whom he may devour. Remember that our sufferings are not unusual, they are common to all men, therefore be steadfast and have a solid faith in Christ. Pray always one with another, because all solid peace is founded on Christ, and flows from Him alone. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:29 AM
Saturday, May 13, 2017
The true Christians follow the will of God, not their own desires, nor the rule of their lives, because the Holy Spirit alters our mind, judgment, affections, and the entire being. When a person is truly converted, it is grievous to think how the time past of his/her life had been spent. We were one dead, but made alive to Christ when the gospel was preached to us. But suffering for Christ became part of our lives when we give it up to Him. We should not be ashamed when we experience trials and strange things, because we are partaker of His nature and ministry. Now we can confidently says that the Lord is our portion, and nothing but the glory through Christ is solid and lasting that abide in me for ever. God is cleansing us, or judging us in this present world, so that we would not be judged in the world to come. And if we the believers are barely saved, what will happen to unbelievers? God bless.
Friday, May 12, 2017
In the midst of trials and persecutions, Peter told the wives to submit to their own husband, with purity of the hearts, the inner persons. And to the husbands, to understand and honor their wives as weaker vessel. Christians should take care all their behavior, right order of their own spirits, not returning evil for evil, that we may inherit the blessings, "for the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous" (v12). Let us forsake and keep far from evil actions, do all the good things that we can, seek peace with all men, and be ready to defend our faith in Christ Jesus to everyone, with meekness, in the fear of God. Noah's salvation in the ark which carried him and his family above the floods is a type of eternal salvation of all true believers by means of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Not only of the outward ceremony of the washing with water but the regenerating power of God's Spirit, that enabled us to repent from sin and to walk by faith in Christ our good Lord. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:58 AM
Thursday, May 11, 2017
A new life in Christ needs suitable food, the word of God, like the infants that desire milk and make the best effort for it. As chosen generation and royal priest of Christ, we belong to one family of God, a people distinct from the world, of another spirit, with godly principle and practice which should not be compromised. So, we need to exhort one with another to keep from the worldly sins and the fleshly desires of men. A Christian conversation must be honest, they should behave properly, perform their duties consistently, and always remember that they are holy servants of God. Servants in those days were slaves, and used them cruelly, yet Peter told them to be subject to their masters with fear to dishonor or offend God. Christ's death was designed not only for an example of patience under sufferings, but He bore our sins, He bore the punishment of us all, and thereby satisfied Divine justice. Those who shall believe in this fact will be forgiven, justified and glorified on His return. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 9:34 AM
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Jesus Christ is the object of our living hope that brings comforts over all distresses and difficulties in life. Our faith is more precious that gold, because gold does not increase by trial in the fire, but it becomes less. However, our faith increase and is made firm by trials and afflictions. Gold perishes and lasts, while faith will be found in eternity to give honor and glory to God. Jesus Christ is the main subject of the prophets' studies in the past. His sufferings and victory exactly agree with the apostles, as the coming from the same Spirit of God. All of them searched diligently those Scriptures in OT which contain the teaching about salvation and glorification that the Christ should accomplish. Therefore, we must be careful in our walks because we were redeemed not by gold of silver, but by the precious blood of the Lamb, bringing us unto the state of holiness (v19). Our soul is in the process of purification, and the Spirit in us stirs up to our duty, working a total change of a true born again person. God bless.
Tuesday, May 9, 2017
All idolized treasures, personal accomplishments, and earthly securities will soon perish, except those things that glorify the Lord. God does not forbid us to live in pleasure, however sinful pleasure is a provoking sin. As we serve the Lord, let us wait patiently on His return, like the one who waits for a crop of corn till harvest time (v7). Men count time long, because they measure it by their own lives; but all time is as nothing to God, it is as a moment. Let us serve God and bear our trials, like Job who believe that the end will crown all. Our eternal happiness is safe if we trust in Christ, while all else is just a vanity and irrelevant. Do not swear and make promises to God or men, if you are unwilling to fulfill them. The Lord will not hold that person guiltless who takes His name in vain. When we accepted Jesus and promised to serve Him till the end of life, make sure to fulfill that promises till the end of your life. Finally, let us pray one with another, don't stop seeking God's will, because the prayer of the righteous and forgiven person are effective and powerful. God bless
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:55 AM
The reason for division, misunderstanding, and disunity is pride. People follow the ways of the world, therefore they become enemies of God. If that is our case, we shall never receive favor from the Lord, nor accomplish anything, only because He gives grace to the humble, but resists the proud spirit. Submit ourselves therefore to His words, and all evil forces shall flee from us; from our homes, church, ministries and work places. Judging ourselves and not our brethren is the true demonstration of humility. Continue to come closer to God's presence and we shall find peace in our hearts. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 8:16 AM
Christianity teaches the believers to be joyful in time of troubles. God allows trials because it molds and refines the character of God's people. If we lack wisdom and don't understand what is going on in our surroundings, or don't know how to solve the problem that we are in, James said to seek God who gives wisdom liberally to those that asked. Afflictions cannot make us miserable, if it be not our own fault. The tried Christian shall be crowned by the Lord, those who have the love of God reigning in their hearts. As every good gift is from God, so as our being born again, and all its results and consequences in our lives. God bless.
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Hebrews concluded with earnest exhortations to several Christian duties, such as hospitality, visitation, admiration for marriage, and contentment. As Christians, we have reasons to be contented with our present state, because we have been saved, received the Holy Spirit, and have good and great God in heaven. The promise of the Lord is always true and eternal: "I will never leave you nor forsake you" (v5). The true believer has the presence of God with him/her; in presence life and in time of death, and in eternity. Christ is always interceding on our behalf as High Priest, and He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Living by faith in Christ set us apart to God through His blood, that's why let us willingly separate from this evil world. Have a good conscience and as let us bring our sacrifice of praise to His altar, in worship, prayer as well as thanksgiving. Our God is the God of peace, who made a way for peace and reconciliation between Himself and sinners like us. God bless.
Tuesday, May 2, 2017
After listing the giants of faith in the previous chapter, it is now time for us to show and exercise our faith. By looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, let us continue to run with endurance, and ignore all the obstacles that could prevent us to reach the finish line. As we run, we will encounter trials, sufferings, distress in life, and the like, but we should not faint under these testings. Though our surrounding may be instruments to inflict sufferings, yet it may be a divine chastisements. Our heavenly Father has His hand in all, and it is always for our profit. Our whole life on earth is like in a state of childhood, imperfect as to spiritual things, so we must submit to the discipline of our Father God. Then, when we reached the perfect state in heaven, we shall be fully reconciled to all God. His correction is not condemnation; the chastening may be borne with patience that promote holiness in our lives. Let us not refuse the words of Christ who came from heaven to show God's love and mercy for His redeemed people. God bless.
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 7:17 AM
Monday, May 1, 2017
Faith has been the mark of God's servants from the beginning of the world. It is a gift of God when He planted it in our hearts by regenerating our spirit. Faith is our full approval of everything that God reveals in us when we accepted Christ as Lord and Savior of our lives. This view of faith is explained by many examples of people in former times who obtained a good report when they encountered God. Abel offered a better sacrifice, Enoch walked with God, Noah prepared the ark, Abraham went to a foreign land, Sarah received strength, Isaac blessed his two sons, Jacob wrestled with God, Joseph mentioned the departure of Israelites, Moses refused to be called son of Pharaoh's daughter, Joshua conquered the land, Rahad received the spies, Samuel, David, and many others continued to believe and follow their God. Faith could bring us to victory, or it may lead us to persecutions and torture. The great things here is that they all had obtained a good testimony through faith, and yet, did not receive the promise of God. They set their hearts on the things above not on the things of this world. Let us follow their footsteps. God bless
Posted by Christian New Yorker at 6:58 AM