Tag Archives: easter

mmmm zechariah 9 mmmm

mmmm Chocolate Hot Cross Buns mmmm

As Easter approaches, the Western world goes crazy about Chocolate!

Does Easter have another deeper and more significant meaning?

Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion!
    Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem!
See, your king comes to you,
    righteous and having salvation,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
    on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

Zechariah 9:9

The prophet Zechariah predicted that the King would arrive on a colt.

Jerusalem would witness the righteous Messiah bringing salvation.

About 500 years later, Zechariah’s prophecy came true:

When they [the disciples] brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it. Many people [from Jerusalem] spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted,

‘Hosanna!’

‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’

‘Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!’

‘Hosanna in the highest heaven!’

 Jesus entered Jerusalem and went into the temple courts.

Mark 9:7-11a

Jerusalem witnessed Jesus riding a colt into the city.

They welcomed him as their King and Messiah.

This event is still remembered 2,000 years later.

Palm Sunday marks Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem.

Less than a week later, Jesus was crucified on a cross.

Three days later Jesus was raised from the dead.

Easter celebrates Jesus’ death and resurrection.

Jesus was righteous and did not deserve to die.

But he chose to die in our place taking our punishment.

The punishment for our sins is death.

Jesus saved us from eternal death and hell.

Jesus went to hell in our place.

God raised Jesus to life again on Easter Sunday.

God crowned Jesus the King of the Universe.

Jesus offers us eternal life in his heavenly kingdom.

This new life is far better than all the chocolate in the world!

Sadly 2 Egyptian churches were bombed on Palm Sunday.

More than 40 Christians were killed by suicide bombers.

Egyptian Christians have been terrorised for several years now.

This Christian minority faces violent persecution from the religious majority.

These recent attacks occurred on an important Christian day.

Australian leaders have condemned these as an attack on freedom of religion.

These terrorists tried to disrupt Easter celebrations.

Terrorism highlights that our world needs Jesus’ salvation more than ever.

The importance of Easter will never be silenced by terrorists.

Followers wait for Jesus to return to judge the world.

Followers know that Jesus will judge these terrorists.

So there is no need for Christians to take revenge against terrorism.

Instead we join the world in opposing radical terrorism.

We condemn the lies told to suicide bombers by radical preachers.

As Christians, we forgive our enemies just as God forgave us through Jesus – the real meaning of Easter!

Jesus will also judge those who have not accepted his gift of eternal life.

Are you ready to face Jesus’ judgement?

Do you have the hope and assurance of eternal life?

For followers, how does Jesus reign in all aspects of your life?

Recent news about Egyptian church bombings on Palm Sunday 9 April 2017

mmmm Bible mmmm

I do not endorse the advertisement you may see below my blog:

Advertisements

mmmm 1 peter 1 mmmm

Mmmm Chocolate Hot Cross Buns Mmmm

Aussie supermarkets desperately try to boost their profit margins:

Hot cross buns & Easter eggs appear earlier and earlier each year.

This year in January, supermarket shelves were already full with Easter food.

Christmas had only just finished and Easter was a distant 3 months away.

Retailers don’t waste time when money and sales are involved.

Beyond the chocolate, what is the real meaning of Easter?

Is there a deeper meaning behind the commercialisation of this season?

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…

1 Peter 1:3

The bible verse above encapsulates Easter so brilliantly.

God the Father of Jesus showed his love to the whole world.

He mercifully sent Jesus to save us from the mess we were in.

We were powerless to save ourselves.

Jesus died on a cross – the cross in Hot cross buns.

He died in our place and took the punishment we deserved.

God raised Jesus to life again as King of the Universe.

The resurrection is proof that there is life after death.

Those who trust Jesus have new birth into a new life now and in the future.

The Easter egg symbolises new life and a new beginning.

The offer of new life is for everyone no matter how big a mess we have made.

We now have a real and living hope for eternity beyond the grave.

Death is not the end for followers of Jesus.

It is the gateway to life with Him in heaven.

At Easter we remember the sacrifice of Jesus dying to save us.

We also celebrate his resurrection and look forward to being raised to life in the future.

What will happen to you after you die?

Would you like to have a 2nd chance at life after the mess you’ve made?

For followers, can family, friends, neighbours & colleagues see Jesus in your life?

mmmm Bible mmmm

I do not endorse the advertisement you may see below my blog:

mmmm romans 5 mmmm

Mmmm Chocolate Hot Cross Buns Mmmm

In Australia, we have access to awesome food!

But that’s not the only food that is mouth-watering.

At Bible College last semester, I ate big mouthfuls of the New Testament.

You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.
Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die.
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!
For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!
Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Romans 5:6-11

We know Easter is coming when all the stores start selling Chocolate Eggs & Hot Cross Buns.

Every year they start appearing earlier and earlier as retailers exploit this Christian holiday.

Sadly I saw eggs appear in January immediately after months of Christmas commercialisation.

Although eggs and buns are delicious, what is the real meaning of Easter?

The passage above is a great summary of the “Amazing Grace” of Easter.

Humans fight with God even though He lovingly created us.

We hate God and His name has become a common swear word in society.

We are at war with God and have become his bitter enemies.

As a result our world is in a mess: wars everywhere and environmental destruction.

How does God respond?

Instead of waiting for us to be his friends, he takes the initiative to reach out to us.

God demonstrated his amazing love for his enemies by sending Jesus to die on a cross.

Very rarely will anyone choose to die for anyone else.

Possibly you might choose to die for a good friend, but never your enemy.

We deserve to die for our own sins – our rebellion against God.

God sacrificed his own Son to die in your place to pay for your sins.

Jesus chose to die so that we can have peace with God.

God raised Jesus to life again as King of the Universe.

We can now have a real relationship with God.

At Easter we celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus.

The amazing grace is the gift of eternal life that Jesus offers his enemies.

If we accept this gift, we can be friends with God.

If we reject this gift, we remain his enemies and face eternal death.

Are you at war with God by fighting or ignoring Him?

Do you want to be at peace with God and have forgiveness for your sins?

For Christians, do you think that the Jesus’ grace is the most amazing thing in your life?

mmmm Bible mmmm

I do not endorse the advertisement you may see below my blog:

mmmm 1 corinthians 15 mmmm

Mmmm King Prawn Bee Hoon Chinese Noodles Mmmm

In Australia, we have amazing, authentic Asian food!

But that’s not the only food that is mouth-watering.

At Bible College this semester, I’m eating the delicious New Testament.

For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance:
that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
and that he appeared to Peter,and then to the Twelve.
After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time,
most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.

12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead,
how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?

13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised.
14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.
15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God,
for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead.
But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised.
16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either.
17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 

20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead,
the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
21 For since death came through a man,
the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man.

22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

1 Corinthians 15:3-6; 12-17 & 20-22

Christians know that Jesus died on a cross – we still celebrate this on Good Friday in Australia.

We also celebrate his resurrection from the dead on Easter Sunday.

2000 years ago some Corinthians denied the resurrection of Jesus.

Apparently they were too sophisticated and smart to believe in such foolishness.

They could not accept the fact that anyone could come back to life after dying.

But the resurrection is the cornerstone of the Christian faith.

Why is the resurrection so important?

The resurrection of Jesus proves conclusively that there is life after death.

Today as my non-Christian barber cut my hair, I asked whether she celebrated Easter.

She hesitated and unconvincingly claimed that there was no life after death.

I asked, “How can you be so sure?”

Can atheists prove to me that there is NO life after death?

What evidence can they show me that our souls DO NOT live on beyond the grave?

Jesus IS the proof that God has conquered death once and for all.

Our hope rests on the eyewitness accounts of 500+ followers who saw Jesus alive and well.

1 or 2 sightings could be dismissed, but how can you dispute 500 sightings?

So what is the hope that Christians have?

We celebrate God raising Jesus to life as King of the Universe.

After we die, we will also be raised into new bodies and seated in heaven with Jesus.

Death is not the end – death is the gateway to new life.

Earth is our temporary home before we join our King forever.

Are you afraid of dying in this world that is beyond your control?

Death is a certainty – so what will happen to you after you die?

Do you know the King of the Universe now and in the future?

mmmm Bible mmmm

I do not endorse the advertisement you may see below my blog:

mmmm acts 2 mmmm

Mmmm Roast Duck & Orange Salad Mmmm

In Australia, we have amazing fresh produce & restaurant food!

But that’s not the only food that is mouth-watering.

At Bible College this semester, I’m eating the delicious New Testament.

38 Peter replied, ‘Repent and be baptised, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off – for all whom the Lord our God will call.’
40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, ‘Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.’
41 Those who accepted his message were baptised,
and about 3,000 were added to their number that day.
42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
43 Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles.
44 All the believers were together and had everything in common.
45 Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.
46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,
47 praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

Acts 2:38-47

In the book of Acts, we see Peter sharing the good news of Jesus with a large crowd.

3000 listeners decided to repent and accept the gift of salvation.

Their journey of faith did not stop there.

They met regularly in fellowship – this is one of the earliest descriptions of “church” in the Bible.

What did these new Christians when they met together (church)?

  • They listened to the apostles teaching about Jesus and how to live the Christian life.
  • They ate meals together.
  • They prayed together.
  • They shared their possessions and helped each other.
  • They praised God with glad and sincere hearts.

Fast forward 2000 years to today.

Christians still meet together weekly on Sundays in churches across the world.

Those who only go to church twice a year at Christmas & Easter are fooling themselves.

This irregular attendance does not make you Christian or give you eternal life.

Even regular church attendance does not give you eternal life.

Only accepting the forgiveness of Jesus’ death & resurrection gives you entry to heaven.

So what is the purpose of the 21st Century church?

Church gives Christians the opportunity to share their lives together.

We are not called to be private followers of Jesus in isolation.

We are part of a wider community who love God and each other.

So those who think they can live the Christian life without church are WRONG.

  • We need the encouragement of others to keep growing & maturing as Christians.
  • We need the love & prayers of others when we face difficulties in life.
  • We thank God & celebrate together as we overcome obstacles.

Most of all, we continually remind each other of the death & resurrection of Jesus.

  • When was the last time you went to church?
  • Did you hear the Bible read & taught at church?
  • When was the last time you shared a meal with other Christians?
  • When did you last pray with other Christians?

mmmm Bible mmmm

I do not endorse the advertisement you may see below my blog:

mmmm numbers 9 mmmm

Mmmm Enjoyed delicious Japanese Sushi & Sashimi today Mmmm

Sydney has amazing Asian food!

But that’s not the only food that is mouth-watering.

At Bible College, I’m eating mouthfuls of Old Testament this semester.

And the Lord spoke to Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, in the first month of the second year after they had come out of the land of Egypt, saying,“Let the people of Israel keep the Passover at its appointed time. On the fourteenth day of this month, at twilight, you shall keep it at its appointed time; according to all its statutes and all its rules you shall keep it.” So Moses told the people of Israel that they should keep the Passover. And they kept the Passover in the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, at twilight, in the wilderness of Sinai; according to all that the Lord commanded Moses, so the people of Israel did.

Numbers 9:1-5

Just before Easter, a Jewish workmate went around our office
telling everyone that it was Passover.

He shared his unleavened bread (bread without yeast) and made us all taste it.

Jews celebrate Passover by remembering how God saved their firstborn sons and animals prior to the Exodus from Egypt.

This is also the Last Supper that Jesus celebrated with his disciples prior to his death on a cross.

I talked with my Jewish mate about the Old Testament and showed him this Blog on my SmartPhone so he could read the Gospel message in the previous post.

My Jewish mate is not Orthodox and does not observe the Sabbath,
but he does observe cultural celebrations like Passover and Yom Kippur.

He is not particularly religious but identifies himself as culturally Jewish.

This reminds me of many Aussies who are nominally Christian –
they only go to church at Easter and Christmas.

They think that this minimal attendance will get them into heaven.

As long as they lead a “good” life – they’ll be right mate.

God does not want us to just pay “lip service” and observe cultural events.

He wants us to have a real relationship and spend every day with Him.

A real relationship is characterised by daily conversations, not just twice a year encounters.

How often do you talk and listen to God?

mmmm Bible mmmm