Monday, June 17, 2019

Introduction (GL00)

'Appreciating God's Love'

Rev 19:7  "Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready."
 
    A marriage is a recognized union between two people who are in love. The holy matrimony between the Lamb and His bride can only be solemnized when mutual love exist.
    Brethren, I believe the centre of our interest should revolve around the preparation
of becoming the bride of the Lamb.

Deu 6:4-5  "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength."

    In the OT, the Israelites knew the presence of God was in their midst when they saw the pillar of cloud in the day and the pillar of fire at night.
    The Israelites could easily love God with all their hearts, all their soul and all their strength because of their frequent encounters with deliverance, protection, healing and blessings.
    Unfortunately, the Israelites were stiff-necked and rebellious people, even in His presence, because their carnal men were not crucified.

Love at the Cross
John 13:34  A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

     Christ showed the depth of His love for us by giving us this new commandment right before His crucifixion. The movie, Passion of Christ, vividly reminds us of His great sacrificial love just like how the Israelites were made aware of God's presence by looking at those pillars.
       
John 13:35  "By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

    Why then are there still quarrels, jealousy, disharmony and disunity in homes and churches?
Just like the Ephesian church, the love of Christ was missing in all their services and ministries.

Rev 2:4-5  Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent.

I Cor 13:13  And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

    Love encompasses our total faith or trust in Him. It fuels our unfailing hope in His promises, and galvanizes us to joyfully becoming the living sacrifices for others.
 
    I have to admit that this is the most difficult topic to write and I pray that the Holy Spirit will guide me along. Please help me along from His word. No worldly wisdom please. UN human rights have produced 'spoilt brats' with the banning of the cane and now the destruction of the human race with homosexuality and same sex marriages.

God is Love (GL01)

     'Appreciating God's Love'

I John 4:7-8  Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

    Since God is love, anyone who claims that he knows God must love one another by caring for other's welfare. Those, who are not able to love one another, do not know God.

I John 3:17-18  But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.


What is Love
I Cor 13:4-7  Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

    This is the divine love of God within the Triune Godhead. It is a summary of the perfect love shown to men throughout the history of mankind since the days of Adam.
    God has shown and given this divine love to us. He will help us to perfect our love so that we can be His bride, to be seated with Him on His throne.
   If we can love one another as Jesus had loved us, then our love is perfected.

John 13:34  A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.


Children of God
Rom 8:15-16  For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father." The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,

   The instant we believed and accepted the gospel of grace, our Lord Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit of adoption which qualified us to call the Almighty God, our Father. We become part of the family of God and enjoy the power of casting out demons, praying for the sick, intercession, preaching His gospel with signs and wonders...

I John 3:1-2  Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.


Sons of God
Rom 8:17-19  and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God.
   After we are born again, with the help of His Spirit, we must crucify our flesh. This is a painful process where we will be completely freed from the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. God will then call us 'sons of God', for we have been transformed into the image of His only begotten Son, Jesus.
Rom 8:13-14  For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

Love within Triune Godhead (GL02)

    'Appreciating God's Love'

The Triune Godhead
NKJV  I John 5:7  For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one.
    God revealed Himself in the Triune Godhead as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, so that we can see the divine love within the Godhead.

Working in Unity at Creation
Gen 1:1-2  In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
    The Spirit of God was on earth. Then God (the Father) spoke and His Word (our Lord) created.
   There is full agreement and complete harmony concerning creation and also in the creation of man into the image of God.
Gen 1:26  Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth."

We can now visualize the divine love within the Triune Godhead and we can use this on our own families and also on our spiritual families in His church.

Though the trinity are equal in the Triune Godhead, and their decisions are always in agreement and in harmony, yet the Father being the Head has the full authority.

Father's Love for Son
John 5:20  "For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does; and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel."
    The Father loved the Son, who pleased Him in all things. He was always with Jesus and revealed everything to Him
John 8:29  "And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him."

Husband is the Head
Eph 5:23-26  For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word,
     Similarly, since God has appointed the husband to be the head of the wife, he must love her with the perfect love God has given to him (1 Cor 13:4-7)

Jesus' Love for Father
John 15:9-10  "As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love."
    Our Lord Jesus expressed His love for the Father through perfect obedience even when it meant death on the cross.
Phi 2:8  And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death on the cross.

Love by Submission
John 5:19  Then Jesus answered and said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner."
   Our Lord was assiduous to the instructions of the Father to the very last detail as an expression of His undying love for Him.

Love in Church and Family
Eph 5:24  Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.
    Similarly, to be scriptural with God's love and blessings, congregations must submit to their appointed pastors. Wives must submit to their husbands with affection and live in harmony.

Importance of Jesus' Word
John 14:26  But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
    The Holy Spirit was sent by the Father to bring to our remembrance the word of Jesus to ensure that Christians can keep them.
Note: The people who reject Jesus' words are without the Holy Spirit and they are lost forever, so keep away from them.
Jude 18-19  how they told you that there would be mockers in the last time who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts. These are sensual persons, who cause divisions, not having the spirit.

Submission to Jesus' Word
John 16:13-14  "However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you."
    Even the Holy Spirit submits to the word of Jesus, which to all intents and purposes is the literal spoken word of God.

Eph 5:21  submitting to one another in the fear of God
    Submission is an expression of love so we need to submit to one another in the fear of the Lord (no heresies nor sinful lifestyle)

Adam in God's Image (GL03)

    'Appreciating God's Love'

Image of His Divine Love
Gen 1:26a  Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness."
    I believe that the Triune God created Adam and Eve in their image and in their loving disposition so that man will be able to love one another emulating the Triune Godhead who loves one another.

Oneness in Adam and Eve
Gen 1:27  So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
    This divine love in Adam and Eve will help them to live in harmony and oneness as they dwell on this earth. The same harmony and unity were displayed by the Triune Godhead during their creation of the heaven and the earth and later in the salvation and transformation of the fallen man back into His own image.
John 17:11  "Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are."


Impossible Task for Adam
Gen 1:28  Then God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth."
    After the creation of Adam, God tasked him to have dominion over everything with life on earth and in the sea. He was also given the authority to name all the living things. In the flesh, this was an impossible task.
   Just imagine, the blessed Adam was enjoying the beauty of the garden of Eden while riding on the back of a giraffe, chatting with a rhinoceros, frolicking with a giant mammoth or possibly gallivanting the skies on a big bird. To stretch the perfect picture further, visualize Adam on the back of the killer whale, commanding it to dive into the deep blue sea and to resurface to allow Adam to breathe.
    What great joy it was to Adam when he could perform the possible with His empowerment.
Gen 2:19  Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name.

Eph 2:10  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
    Jesus has redeemed us from our fallen nature, and like Adam, we must do good works which always looked impossible.

Oneness with God
Gen 3:8a  And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day,
    In the cool of the day, God, who loved Adam and Eve deeply, would come down from heaven to fellowship with them for they looked forward to His wonderful presence.
    One could envisage that our Father came down on purpose to carry and to lift Adam and Eve up so that they could pick the fruit they wanted to eat that evening. He enjoyed their warmth just by holding and having them close by. As a doting Father, He could have enjoyed Himself riding with Adam and Eve on the backs of moving creatures while Adam named and dominated them.
    With this divine love flowing in the garden of Eden, heaven was on earth then. There was oneness with Adam and Eve and also oneness of Adam and Eve with God.
    Christians with perfected love will be able to have 'oneness with one another' and 'oneness with the Triune God' in the New Heaven.
John 17:20-21  "I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Love in the Covenant (GL04)

     'Appreciating God's Love'

Adamic Covenant
Gen 2:16-17  And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."
    God told Adam that he could eat all the fruits in the garden of Eden including the tree of life, the fruit of which will give him eternal life. But he must not eat the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The day that he partakes of the forbidden fruit, he will surely die (cannot partake from the fruit of life anymore).
    God made this covenant with Adam so that as long as he does not eat the forbidden fruit, he could enjoy eternal life.
    This Adamic Covenant was the good and perfect gifts from God, the Father.
Jam 1:17  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.


God was their Head
Gen 2:16-17  And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."
    When God gave the command for Adam and Eve to keep, He had established Himself as their Head or Lord. So when Adam and Eve accepted His command, the Adamic Covenant was in force.
    Adam and Eve were delighted that God made Himself their Head in this covenant. For He was always helping them in picking their delicious fruits high on the trees, carry and caring for them while riding wild elephants, horses, big birds...
    With their unfailing and perfect love for God, they would not hurt Him by breaking the covenant in eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge.

Confidence with Covenant
I John 3:18-21  My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God.
    With this covenant, every time the Lord God Almighty came down for fellowship, Adam and Eve would be delighted for they had the confidence that God was pleased with them for they had kept His commandment. With this assurance they looked forward to a wonderful fellowship with Him.

Gangsterism during my Teens
    In the fifties, gangsterism was popular. Most students were involved. My parents forbid me to be involved. I was threatened by schoolmates. Against all types of threats, I kept my parents' command. Whenever I see my parents, I was filled with confidence and joy for my assurance to them brought joyful tears in their eyes.

Covenants of God are covenants of love. They give us the assurance of His approvals, pleasures and love. They also fill us with joy, faith and fulfillment for our ability to keep them.

Blissful Time with God (GL05)

    'Appreciating God's Love'

Man in the Likeness of God
Gen 5:1-2  This is the book of the genealogy of Adam. In the day that God created man, He made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female, and blessed them and called them Mankind in the day they were created.
    God created man in His likeness with the divine love within the Godhead and the love for the Creator.
   So Adam and Eve loved one another just as the Triune Godhead loves One Another. Adam and Eve also loved God just as God loves His children.
    God loved Adam and Eve very much and in return they loved God as much, and they looked forward to their blissful fellowships every evening. Love in 1Cor 13:4-7 was found and practiced in the fellowships between Adam and Eve and their fellowships with God.
    To Adam and Eve then, heaven was on earth for over a hundred years until they were chased out from the garden of Eden.
I Cor 13:4-7  Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.


Blissful Time for the Father
I John 3:1-2  Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.
    God was delighted to see Adam and Eve working in harmony and in love doing His task of naming and dominating all living creatures. They made the burden easier for the other by sacrificing oneself. They risked themselves willing and joyfully for the safety of the other.
    Whenever one of them fell from the tree or animal's back, God would take this opportunity to carry them and hugged them with great joy. God is looking for every opportunity to hug and love us. He loves to be in contact with us for He loves us more than we love our beloved and obedient children.
    I remembered that during my early years when I was starting companies after companies, the burdens were great. But when I went home and held my new born son, all my fears, burdens and problems just vanished into thin air. The blissful moment of holding my son in my arms filled my soul with His pure love, which cast out all fears.
    Today, holding the OA tiny tots in my arms gives me great joy and serenity, just as though I am in my Father's arms.
I John 4:18  There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.


Blissful Time for Adam and Eve
John 15:13  Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends.
    Adam and Eve loved each other and their most important work is not only to name and dominate the living creatures but to ensure that they pleased God and loved one another with His perfect love.
   Adam and Eve were blissful for each lived their lives for the benefit, pleasure and happiness of the other. They cared and loved one another more than their own lives.
    God expects Christians to live in unity and love one another just like Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden.
Psa 133:1  Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!

Perfect Love Lost by Adam
Gen 5:3  And Adam lived one hundred and thirty years, and begot a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth.
    Adam and Eve enjoyed their blissful lives for over a hundred years and after their fall, they were chased out from the garden of Eden. Having lost the perfect love of God, Adam's descendants were all born into his depraved image of sin and wickedness until they are born again into God's image through Christ Jesus.

Satan Cunning Schemes (GL06)

     'Appreciating God's Love'

Satan Twisted God's Words
Gen 3:1  Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, "Has God indeed said, 'You shall not eat of every tree of the garden'?"
    The devil always uses God's words to deceive Christians by twisting and distorting them or taking them out of context. (Please read the devil's temptation of Jesus in Mat 4)
   God allowed Adam to eat from all the trees in the garden of Eden except the fruit of the tree of knowledge but the devil distorted it by suggesting that God forbid them to eat all the fruit in the garden. The devil indirectly indicated that God was not understanding nor loving by forbidding Adam and Eve to enjoy all those delicious fruits in the garden.
    Just like an angel of light, the devil appeared to be concerned about the welfare of Adam and Eve. But his evil motive was to deceive them to sin by disobedience or rebellion, so that they could no longer enjoy the blissful fellowship with God anymore. The devil's ministers nowadays are preaching heresies by distorting or rejecting Jesus' word.
2 Cor 11:14-15  And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.


Devil Distorted God's Word
Gen 3:4-5  Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
    When God told Adam and Eve that if they ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge they would die - meaning that because they had sinned for their disobedience, they would be cast out from the garden of Eden. Without the fruit of the tree of life, which gives eternal life, they would die.
    But the devil twisted God's word and told Eve that they won't die because
1. God would not blame them for He loved them
2. He enjoyed their fellowship with Him
3. God promised that they would multiply to fill the earth.

Eve Fell into Satan's Snare
Gen 3:6  So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.
    When Eve saw that the fruit was pleasant and edible, and that it could make them wise, which she assumed God would be delighted at their wisdom, so they ate the forbidden fruit.
    God demands our obedience and not our sacrifices apart from His words. He abhors rebellion and stubbornness. Repent you who are rebellious, who distort and reject His words.
I Sam 15:22-23  So Samuel said: "Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king."


Carnal Image of Man
Gen 5:3  And Adam lived one hundred and thirty years, and begot a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth.
    After the fall of Eve, mankind, the descendants of Adam and Eve were no longer the image of God but that of the fallen Adam, which causes men to be selfish and filled with wickedness.
Genesis 6:5  Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

I John 2:15-16  Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.
    This fallen nature of man has inherited these weaknesses, where the devil always attacks by using temptations.
1. Lust of the flesh - carnality
2 Lust of the eye - covetousness
3. Pride of life

We thank God for His divine love that in Christ Jesus, the fallen man can be born again by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and then transformed into God's image again. With His divine love and truth in us, we can crucify our carnal nature and overcome the devil's temptations and deceptions.