Wisdom Ways presented by the late Rev. A. Linford

                                                           

Rev. A. Linford

Rev. A Linford, before his decease, was recognized as a good, great and interesting Bible teacher in the Assemblies of God Fellowship for many years. He was a well-loved Bible College lecturer and writer that bequeathed a tremendous amount of Biblical material in his generation. What a legacy he has left to be researched and brought forth to refresh our day! We shall be using such on this site: His writings from the book of Proverbs and also his Editorials that he wrote for the Redemption Tidings when he was its editor. I trust you will enjoy and appreciate his inspired teaching.

 

 

DIVINE DISCIPLINE

                                                                                                                                                                 

 

“Whom the Lord loveth he correcteth” Proverbs 3:11, 12

 

What a contrast between these verses and the previous two: here we meet with adversity – “the chastening of the Lord” – there the talk is of prosperity. But don’t the two go together?  A godly life has its ups and downs: the tapestry of a saint’s experience is like the veil of the Tabernacle, shot through with the scarlet of suffering and the gold of glory.

 

Adversity is painful. It can produce one of two reactions: it can be accepted as divine discipline intended to correct our ways; or it can be considered as an evil and defiantly rejected. The advice of the wise man is not to despise it or to resent it, but patiently to consider it as God’s fatherly care for us. The worst thing that God can do is to leave us to ourselves.

 

Adversity is profitable. “Sweet are the uses of adversity” if they teach us to mend our ways, if they stir us to seek the Lord, if they deepen our sympathy for fellow-sufferers The sufferings of the righteous are “chastenings of love”. They are the mark of sonship the corrective activities of a loving God. He chastens us to make us chaste. The writer to the Hebrews uses this proverb in exhortation to persecuted Christians – Hebrews 12:5-11 making the point that although chastening is hard to bear, the issues are productive of good. The “present” must ever be regarded in the light of afterwards”. Even our Lord “though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered” – Hebrews 5:8. Muscular development is obtained by resisting opposing force; roses are enriched by pruning; the vine is ruthlessly trimmed that grapes may grow to perfection: even children of God are made better by affliction. Paul found that losses for Christ’s sake were great gain – Philippians 3:8; it was like exchanging sand for sapphires.  The essence of discipleship is discipline, and no one can truly follow Jesus who does not accept His yoke If we love God we will accept His dealings with us with the assurance that the same hand that wields the rod is the hand that holds us up, the same hand that dispenses the blessing sustains our soul.

 

PRAYER:               Thank you, Lord, for every trial that brings me nearer Thee!

 

D .L. Moody

 

Dwight Lyman Moody (1837-1899) made a tremendous impact on the spiritual life of Britain during his visits to this country in 1873-5, 1881-4 and 1891 -2. Many thousands of converts were added to the churches, Christian institutions initiated and a general impetus given to church life throughout the British Isles. R. A. Torrey, in his booklet Why God used D. L. Moody, lists seven reasons for the greatness of this American evangelist.

 

Here they are. First, Moody was a fully surrendered man. Henry Varley, an intimate friend of Moody, once said to him; “It remains to be seen what God will do with a man who gives himself up wholly to Him.” Moody’s immediate response was, “Well, I will be that man!” Secondly, Moody was a man of prayer. He believed God would answer his prayers, and met every difficulty in this assurance. Thirdly, Moody was a deep and practical student of the Bible. He knew the Book through and through. His book Pleasure and Profit in Bible Study is a revelation of the delight this great-hearted man had in the Word of God. His life was Bible-enriched, his ministry was Bible-based. Fourthly, Moody was a humble man. His outstanding success did not turn his head. He moved among all classes, high and low, with a simple dignity and unaffected grace. Fifthly, Moody was entirely free from the love of money. He loved to gather money for God’s work; he refused to accumulate it for himself. In his time he handled millions of dollars, but they simply passed through his fingers and did not stick to them. Sixthly, Moody had a consuming passion for the lost. He not only preached to the masses, he witnessed to individuals. He could not sleep unless he had personally witnessed to at least one person during the day. Seventhly, Moody was endued with power from on high. A tremendous experi­ence with God changed his whole life: his ministry was galvanised, his preaching became irresistible.

 

So Dr. Torrey. But I would like to add two more points. One is that D. L. Moody possessed remarkable natural talents, which, when devoted to God, became the basis of a virile and forceful ministry. Secondly, he was a “chosen vessel”, a gift of Christ to His church, a man for the hour. There is a ripeness of time as well as a richness of personality that jointly make for epochal effects. When these two meet in the providence of God, the result is overwhelming.

 

You wish to be used of God? There is a part that depends on you – capacity for service developed by consecrated activities. There is a part that depends on God His empowerment, His sovereign will. Do your part by giving your life wholly to God; God will perform His part, to His own glory.

 

 

 

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Knowing the Truth compiled by Rev. A. Hocking

                                                             

Rev. A. Hocking 

WHO AM I? 

Rev. A. Hocking

 

 

We live in an age of computers and numbers.  Many people feel they are fast losing their identity and becoming merely a number.  If you go to many places now, they will ask you for ‘your registered number’.  You are known not as a name, but an impersonal row of numbers.

 

However, in our families we will always be known by our name.  It is something very precious to us. We can’t imagine Mum calling out “Number 3, come in, your tea’s ready!”

 

If we are giving our details to someone, we insist they get our name right, even spelling it if necessary. So it is good to know that to God we will never be ‘just a number’.  Jesus said He was ‘the good shepherd’ and calls His sheep by name.  Now if you’re anything like me, one sheep looks very much like another, but I understand that a good shepherd will know each sheep individually. Often by their faults! “That one has a piece out of its ear.. that one there has a patch of wool off its back.. that one has a distinguishing black patch etc.

 

Like the good shepherd, God knows us better than we know ourselves. He not only knows our name, the Bible says He even knows how many hairs we have on our heads!  Now with me that becomes easier every day! But he also knows the doubts, fears, and conflicts that trouble us and is always ready to help us.

 

There’s another thing about sheep you know – they always want to run away.  If you’ve ever watched a sheepdog at work, you’ll have seen how there always seems to be one awkward one that runs this way and that rather then go where it should.   The Bible says, “All we like sheep have gone astray, we’ve all gone the way we  want to go”. Many times we’ll do anything rather than turn to God.  I wonder why?

 

As always, God stands ready to help.  If you’ve been running away from Him of late, stop running, and turn your life over to Him today.

Message of the Moment recorded by Rev. E. Anderson

                                        

Rev. E. Anderson

Help My Unbelief!
by Jon Walker

“I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” Mark 9:24 (NIV)

*** *** *** ***

Recently, I’ve been thinking my life verse should be Mark 9:24: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

 

I do believe, yet I have so much unbelief in my life. I walk in faith, yet my faith is often more in the things I see than the things I don’t see. I follow God, yet I repeatedly find myself stumbling down the path of my own choosing.

 


I believe; God, help me overcome my unbelief –

 

   I believe; help me live like I believe.
   I believe; help me choose like I believe.
   I believe, help me trust like I believe.

 

Help me to live like I really believe you are trustworthy. Help me to abandon my mythology of like I believe in you, where I believe I am more trustworthy than you, and so I live like I believe in myself instead of like I believe in you.

 

 “I do believe, but help me not to doubt!” (Mark 9:24 NLT).

 

What does this mean?

 

   “Help my unbelief” – You cannot work yourself up to greater belief; instead, your belief deepens as you deepen your fellowship with God. Tell him, “I believe; help me overcome my unbelief.”

   Believe God, not yourself – As you face decisions today, ask yourself, “Is this decision based on my belief in God or my belief in myself?” Keep confessing, “Lord, I believe; help me overcome my unbelief.”

   Focus on knowing God – Knowing God is more important than knowing the details. Oswald Chambers says, “Living a life of faith means never knowing where you are being led. But it does mean loving and knowing the One who is leading. It is literally a life of faith, not of understanding and reason – a life of knowing him who calls us to go.”

 

 

 

God’s Thoughts and Ways provided by Rev. E. Anderson

                                                

Rev. E. Anderson

GOD’S THOUGHTS AND WAYS

 

THE WAY OF SALVATION

 

Reading    Psalm 107

 

Introduction

 

NECESSITY: There is little doubt that people are reduced to a state at times when there is the need of some intervention because of the difficulties they find themselves in. No matter how clever and able they seem to be, they require help in order to save them. It is not a nice circumstance to be in when all one’s wisdom, craft and energy has failed and there are conditions of crisis. Nobody really likes these sort of situations and experiences. EXTREMITY: Usually the situations are of sudden and great emergency and extremity and require a miracle. The point has been reached where it is in the realm of the impossible. There is no way that anyone can effectively answer the prevailing circumstance. When the extreme is reached many give up in despair seeing no way out. They only vainly hope that something extraordinary could and would happen. It is heartening to know that the God of Bible is a God who has a way of salvation. Into the midst of the most helpless and hopeless conditions He can reveal and work a way of salvation. This psalm, in particular, reveals God at work in the extreme conditions which men find themselves in. SPONTANEITY: The great thing to understand is this, behind it is a big heart of love and kindness that loves and longs to demonstrate itself on behalf of mankind. It mentions at the beginning and the end the ‘mercy and lovingkindness of the Lord.’ Mercy is His steadfast and unequivocal love and kindness and His lovingkindness is His mercy. All flows from a loving and generous disposition in acts of salvation. See the greatest text of all -–John 3: 16. VARIETY: There is no limit to what God can and will do in relation to salvation. He is not restricted on any front. What capacities and capabilities He possesses and He can move into any extreme circumstance and show His power. The psalmist says elsewhere: “Salvation belongeth unto the Lord” – Psalm 3: 8.He becomes the hope and strength of those who trust Him and there is nothing He cannot do for those who trust Him.

 

1/. IT IS REVEALED IN A STATE OF BARRENNESS – Genesis 15; 1 Samuel 1

 

Two women in the O.T. discover that the Lord is able to intervene in their circumstances in spite of the barrenness of their wombs. Both Sarah and Hannah knew what it was for the Lord to give a prophetic word into their beings and then to make them pregnant. They believed 4/. God would do as He said and so saw the salvation of the Lord in making them mothers.

 

2/. IT IS EXPRESSED IN A TIME OF DANGER – Genesis 32

 

Jacob seemed to court quite a bit of danger. His life appears to be threatened by Esau and Laban but the Lord was able to save him out of two particular hotspots. Neither of these were enamoured by their relative, Jacob, and would have done him harm but the Lord acted in salvation in securing his preservation – Genesis 31: 29; 32: 1; 33; 4. The Lord could deal with all the hatred and threats and bring an amicable state about.

 

3/. IT IS MANIFESTED IN A SITUATION OF IMPOSSIBLE CIRCUMSTANCES – Genesis 41

 

It did look as if Joseph was destined to spend all of his life behind prison bars and doors. How on earth could he ever be free from such hopeless conditions? He must have pondered and wondered what could happen to change this scene of desolation but God had a way of salvation. At the right moment He knew how to work a way of deliverance and did it in a unique manner. Even a monarch’s sleep pattern could be change to accommodate the means of salvation for a worthy servant! No one would have given much hope of him ever getting out. It looked like a life sentence, but God has ways and means of doing the extraordinary.

 

4/. IT IS EXHIBITED TO EFFECT NATIONAL EMANCIPATION – Exodus 12

 

One of the most outstanding acts of divine salvation by God was performed of an enslaved people, Israel. God was not taking on the hop with this situation because He had already forecasted this to His faithful friend, Abraham – Genesis 15: 13, 14. And so it happened according to His revelation and schedule. The book of Exodus is all about God making a way out for this special people from the bondage of Egypt. It was no mean feat as the Lord displayed His sovereign power in Egypt and at the Red Sea. It became an unforgettable incident in their history. He made a way out from Egypt, making a way through the Red Sea and the wilderness and made a way into the Promised Land. That is salvation!

 

5/. IT IS SHOWN IN IMPOSSIBLE ODDS – 1 Samuel 17

 

It was to a young boy that was prepared to trust Him that He would prove He could always work in the impossible odds. No one would have given David any hope of reducing this immense man down to size and to death as the situation was viewed. Goliath was putting his hope in the flesh, his own might and strength but David believed in the saving arm and power of God and was not disappointed. He made history that day and became the renowned ‘giant-killer.’  Many have gained their inspiration from him as they have had to confront odds that were far beyond them. What the Lord was to David, they too have known and proved that they could take on situations beyond them in and through the Lord and see the Lord making a way of extraordinary salvation.

 

6/. IT IS DEMONSTRATED AGAINST THE FACT OF SIN – Matthew 1: 21

 

Unquestionably, the greatest work of salvation is that obtained through Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the world. The Bible is mainly concerned about God planning and paving a way of salvation for all the sons of men from sin and evil and from Satan’s power. This has been successfully negotiated in Jesus Christ.  He came to save mankind from its sins, from its penalty and power, bringing about a means of forgiveness and freedom. Through the work on the Cross the way of salvation is revealed and experience. Through His death and resurrection people can find life, freedom and the way to God and into His family. It is spoken of in Hebrews 2 as ‘so great salvation.’

 

7/. IT IS DISCLOSED IN AN EXPERIENCE OF IMPENDING DEATH – Acts 12; 27

 

Peter was seemingly in great straits from a human standpoint. Herod had already been successful in the demise of James and it looked as if this apostle was on his way out. The advantage seemed to be going to the enemies of the Lord. But there was a genuine and powerful calling on the Lord and He was to prove that He could deal with extreme situation without any difficulty. He evidently left it to the last moment and then showed His capability by sending an angel with all the answers – vv7-11. It was the monarch who suffered death not the apostle!

 

This is further illustrated in Acts 27 when Paul is on the Adriatic waters with impending doom, disaster and death to the fore. Could God do anything is such foreboding circumstances.  The man of God spoke a word of salvation and provided a way of salvation for the whole of those on board the doomed ship – 276 people were going to make it!

 

CONCLUSION

 

It has to be realized that the Lord himself is salvation. He is the principal One that should be known and sensed in our lives at all times. As faith and life revolves around Him we shall be at peace and in a state of assurance at all time. We will not be worried about any coming crisis or emergency.

 

He desires to work in all the circumstances of our lives at all times and especially when things are extreme. We should expect Him to move when we call and hand over ourselves and the situations we find ourselves in into His hands. He takes full responsibility for all that He is handed over.

 

The reason behind all His interventions is the revelation of His love and kindness. It is important that we discover and appreciate behind all His works is His eternal heart of love. His salvation should bring about a state of worship in our beings in relation to Him and grateful thanks.

 

 

 

 

Extracts from Life afforded by Rev. E. Anderson

                                             

Rev. E. Anderson

ENCOURAGING OTHERS

 

Throughout life it is not only a choice thing to be blessed and used by God, it is also a glorious thing to bless others by the means of encouragement, especially to the up and coming generation. It is to be a rewarding ministry and exercise. God said to Abraham – ‘you will be a blessing and many will be blessed through you’ – genesis 12: 1-4.

 

A great character and Christian believer and minister, Barnabas, in the New Testament, became renowned in the earl Church for this particular gift and service. Many were to appreciate the input of his life, words and deeds into their lives. Amongst them was the great apostle Paul, his nephew, Mark, the writer of the second Gospel,  the early believers, the church at Antioch, other churches etc.

 

Having had a long ministry for Christ, one has been enabled by God to serve and inspire others in some way, making a contributing to young men and women aspiring to Christian ministry and service. This has been a lasting blessing, to witness others impacted and inspired by personal love, care and spiritual input. Quite a number are now fulfilling a dynamic testimony for God and it is a pleasure to see them excelling in leadership and work. To know you have had a little part and role to play in their development and progress is gratifying.

 

It was whilst we were serving the Lord in a new challenging role at the Assemblies of God Bible College in Mattersey Hall that we were able to render some worthwhile service to the students who came from the UK and overseas to be taught and assisted in their divine calling. Well do we remember the day when Lawrence Livesey, a gracious, retired missionary from India brought a student from the place where he had formerly worked for the Lord in India. He was the son of one of his first converts. His name was david Prakasaam. How glad, grateful and rightly proud he was that day to see David enter our College.

 

His personal request to Joan and I was that we would seek to be parents to him seeing he was so far from home. It was to be a very challenging time for him coping with a new culture, weather conditions and food, plus the Bible course and teaching, and he needed fatherly and motherly care. Into our trust was put this precious life and ministry. A bond was created that has lasted for over thirty years. Investment into him has been worth all the commitment. At the time, little did we realise the latent potential that was to be break forth and become most patent.

 

His father and mother, Job, and Ruth, pioneered a tremendous number of churches in India. As David returned, he opened a Bible College, orphanages, a leper colony, churches etc., From the College hundreds of students have been trained and sent forth to open up new churches. He is now the director of the whole work and an excellent preacher/teacher. One can safely say he has apostolic vision, mission, passion and ministry that inspires and encourages countless others. His two sons, Chris and Terry are also now involved with him in the task along with a good and great wife, Ketzie.

 

It has been my privilege to visit India on at least 14 occasions and to relate to David and see the amazing things that God has wrought through him. One of the blessed experiences of my life is to preach with him being as interpreter. Somehow we just click and spiritually connect as we minister God’s Word. When I first went to the main church in Coimbatoire in the 1980’s there were 300 people, now they have a building that accommodates the congregation of over 3,000.

 

It has been a sheer delight to serve as an encourager to him throughout the years and to know that such has been worth it. There is so much more yet to be manifest through him and his two sons.

 

Take time out to look beyond yourself and see how best you get alongside someone else and give some positive assistance. You can be responsible in God for igniting, nurturing someone who is going to excel in their service for the Lord. As a consequence, you will have cause to thank God for giving your time, finance etc., in investing in lives and ministries that will advance Christ’s kingdom.

 

 

Points to Ponder assembled by Rev. E. Anderson

                                                   

Rev. E. Anderson

WHISPERS

The man whispered, ‘God, speak to me’ and a meadowlark sang.
But, the man did not hear.

 

So the man yelled, ‘God, speak to me’ and the thunder rolled across the sky.
But, the man did not listen.

The man looked around and said, ‘God let me see you.’ And a star shined brightly.
But the man did not see.

And, the man shouted, ‘God show me a miracle.’ And, a life was born.
But, the man did not notice.

So, the man cried out in despair, ‘Touch me God, and let me know you are here.’
Whereupon, God reached down and touched the man. But, the man brushed the butterfly away …
and walked on.

I found this to be a great reminder that God is always around us in the little and simple things that we take for granted …. even in our electronic age.

So I would like to add one more:

The man cried, ‘God, I need your help!’ And an e-mail arrived reaching out with good news and encouragement.

But, the man deleted it and continued crying .


Don’t miss out on a blessing because it isn’t packaged the way that you expect.

My instructions were to send this to people that I wanted God to bless and I picked you Won’t you please pass this to people you want to be blessed.

Have A Happy Day!

 

Knowing God prepared by Rev. E. Anderson

                                                   

 Rev. E. Anderson

Knowing God through Providence

Reading    Psalm 57

 

Introduction

 

FAITH: David, the lad who had come to know God early in life, possessed the conviction in his being that God was wise, great and loving enough to plan and provide for his life and whole future. He affirms: ‘I will cry unto God most high; unto God who performeth all things for me’ – Psalm 57; 2. There was a deep, inward reliance that God could be trusted to direct, arrange and provide in all things so that he need not worry or be fretful. As long as he kept up a wholesome relationship with Him then there was no need to be overly concerned about anything. He would work everything out to his good, advantage and blessedness.

DEFINITION: The word is described as; ‘foresight, timely care, prevision; prudence; the beneficent care or control over His creatures’. One could detail and affirm it ‘as God’s loving, wise and able ability to oversee, rightly plan and provide all that is essential to the function and fulfilment of life.’  He is altogether sufficient to meet and minister into every aspect without any strain or problem. One of the titles ascribed to Him is ‘Jehovah Jireh’, the Lord the Provider – Genesis 22: 14. He is never thrust into crises or in a position where He cannot answer any demand or requirement. It is through this means He does to reveal Himself and cause people to know and understand Him.

EXPERIENCE: David personally experienced God’s providences in so many ways and continually desired to know God more and more by this route. Each manifest work of God on this front led him to appreciate the worth and wealth of God in his existence and he knew that if was to be anything and get somewhere then this was to be an integral part of his daily living. He knew it was far better to live within the plan and programme of God than doing what he thought was best.

 

It is possible to trace this truth and factor on a number of fronts:

 

1/. HIS PROVIDENCES ARE EVIDENT IN CREATION

 

Viewing the world order in which we live we must be impressed by its existence and continuance. Behind it is there is masterly design which is disclosed in the way everything functions with such dynamic precision and perfection. It is impossible to imagine that all came into being and working order from a universe and planet standpoint without an infinite intelligence and omnipotent power behind it.  We live in an ordered universe and world and it must be rightly argued that someone gave it that order. To suggest that the world came into being as a result of an almighty explosion seems rather foolish because explosions create chaos and not order.

 

·          Planet earth is integrated with all the other planets and is part of the whole immense universe that works cohesively, continually and purposefully. Our planet or world may be a single unit in one sense but from another viewpoint it is a part of the universal body of planets that inter-act with each other in a quiet by powerful manner. Behind all, is God in perfect control. The Scriptures teach clearly that through Jesus Christ – ‘all consists’ – Colossians 1: 17, that is ‘all exists and holds together’. There is no danger of the universe falling apart because the Creator has the capacity to create and sustain what He has created. It says of Christ: ‘He upholds all things by the word of His power’ – Hebrews 1: 3. He will keep this planet on course and in accord with all the others that exist.

·          Our planet is full of significant direction and ordering on a daily, monthly and yearly basis that bespeaks God’s providential arrangements. Genesis 1 simply reveals God creating and bringing life and order to this world in which we reside and He did it in an orderly fashion. The world above, around and beneath is full of divine arranging and workings and nothing is left to chance. The seasons are all part of His arrangements and the seas come under His absolute control. God opened the eyes of Job to His masterly working of His ability in Job 38 and 39 and he had to bow in worship at His extraordinary power in this direction.

2/. HIS PROVIDENCES ARE APPARENT IN HISTORY

 

Human history is viewed and studied by man for a number of reasons but one thing that is note that God has caused His mind and working to be an integral part of it. Some may think it is just a continual, ongoing manifestation of the human race in all of its diversity and complexity. The drama of the human race is quite a factor but it can only be properly understood when God is introduced into the equation. The Bible certainly puts God central and makes it clear that he knows all that has happened, is happening and is yet to happen on this planet and that He is actively engaged in it in a very committed way. With regard to man it states: ‘and hath determined the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him and find Him . . .’ – Acts 17: 26, 27.

 

·          It can be seen in His choice of a nation, Israel to serve His purpose to benefit the whole world of mankind. Their unique and distinct existence and the role it has had to play in mankind’s affairs as a whole as revealed in the Scriptures underline the truth of God’s providential plans and plans. Their birth, development an service was divinely organised for the specific intention of bringing spiritual benefit to the whole world. Paul makes this clear in Romans 8-11.

·          It can be seen in the incarnation of Christ who has definitely in His providences impacted history. The advent of Jesus was no accident but a deliberately purposed birth as Old Testament prophecies predict – Isaiah 7: 14; 9: 6; Micah 5: 2 confirmed in Matthew 1 & 2; Luke 1 & 2. His death was no misfortune or mistake was duly timed and arranged – see Isaiah 55; Psalm 22 and the fulfilment of the same as made known in the four Gospels. Through His life, death and resurrection Christ supernaturally changed the course of history.

·          It is seen in the birth and presence of the Christian Church that is outworking His purposeful arrangements. The Church of Christ was providentially birthed and has contributed throughout the centuries to the testimony of God and His strategy. All is being outworked according to His policy and will be finalised at the second advent of Christ which is duly arranged – John 14: 1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18; 2 Peter 3: 1-13.

 

3/. HIS PROVIDENCES ARE TO BE MANIFEST TO A PERSONAL LEVEL

 

·          If there is one factor that stands out again and again in the Bible is the knowledge of God coming to people and for His providences to be witnessed in their lives. God moves in on individuals that are ready to accept His government and allow Him to be God. They are lifted out of their little comprehension of life into God’s greater plans. It was so for men and women. Here are but two examples.

 

·          Joseph discovered that God had a choice purpose to reveal and bring to pass – see Genesis 37-50. He was to find out in a real, significant manner how the God He trust in could bring about an enormous destiny for his life by a strange route and means. His testimony to his brothers was: ‘so it was not you that sent me hither, but God’ – Genesis 45: 5-8.

·          Ruth was to be made aware of the fact that God had good plans for her to succeed – see Ruth 1-4. This pagan woman that pinned her faith in God in difficult circumstances was to find out for herself that this God was able to work all things out for her good and blessedness. So many things happened that were more than coincidence or good fortune. God’s mind and hand were very much working behind the scenes.

 

3/. HIS PROVIDENCES ARE YET TO BE UNVEILED WITH REGARD TO THE FUTURE

 

All men need to know that God has not surrendered this world to fate but has gloriously determined great things for the planet and the people on it who have chosen Him and His salvation in and through Jesus Christ. All is to be changed in due time by the providence of God. Soon He is to put in motion His ultimate end time programme and this consists of:

 

·          The great return of His Son Jesus Christ, the Head of the Christian Church, to summon all His people to be with Him – Matthew 24: 27; 26: 64; Acts 1: 10, 11 etc. This has ever been in the mind of God and He has no reason to alter what He has purposed for any reason nor does He have to worry about the time schedule. It is in His hands and will quietly but certainly move to the precise hour of Christ’s appearance.

·          The whole Christian community will be together for the first time gathered around her sovereign Head – 1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18; 1 Corinthians 15: 51-57. No one need worry about the Christian dead over the centuries. God has never lost sight of or relationship with any and His power is such that He has no problem in resurrecting them, giving them new bodies and likewise for all Christian believers who will be alive in this world at His advent. His providence hs planned for resurrection, renewal and rapture.

·          They will know a marvellous providential future with a new realm and home to live in and a magnificent, indescribable future – John 14: 1-3. In His providence He has already got everything lined up as to where they are all to dwell and what their role will be in eternity. Everything has been marked and mapped out for the ages to come.

·          The present material world is due for a divine renewal with His planning – 2 Peter 3: 13; Revelation 21: 1. This present planet may be in a messed up state due to man’s perverse ways and doings but God is not to leave it as it is. He has planned its complete renewal and refurbishment. It is extraordinary what He can do even in the midst of seeming chaos – see Genesis 1: 1, 2.

 

CONCLUSION

 

Every individual has the opportunity and privilege of believing in God and welcoming Him to demonstrate His providences in their lives. Whether they choose to do so is the option God has given. It is not enforced. They do exist for all men on a natural front, however, whether such is believed or not. But is wiser and better to invite Him to reveal His grace and power into life on the personal front and allow Him to be God. Those who experience and enjoy His providences now have a foretaste of what will be in an eternal setting.

 

 

 

 

News and Views edited by Rev. E. Anderson

                                          

Rt Revd Michael Nazir-Ali,

BISHOPS SNUB ANGLICAN
SUMMIT OVER GAY CLERGY

 

Leading Bishops in the Church of England say they will stay away from next month’s Lambeth Conference because liberal pro-gay Bishops from America have been invited.

 

According to reports in the weekend press at least three Bishops including the Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd Michael Nazir-Ali, will boycott the key summit.

 

The other two are the Rt Revd Pete Broadbent, the Bishop of Willesden, and the Rt Revd Wallace Benn, the Bishop of Lewes. A further six are considering similar action.

 

The Lambeth Conference only happens once every ten years. Over 200 Bishops – mainly from Africa – have already snubbed the conference and are currently holding their own alternative event in Jerusalem.

 

The issue was throw into sharp focus last week with news of a ‘wedding-like’ blessing for a homosexual couple in one of London’s most famous Anglican churches.

 

The Bishop of Rochester is understood to have taken his decision following the invitation of American leaders who ordained the first homosexual bishop in the Anglican communion.

 

Their presence at the Lambeth Conference will be highly controversial. An official report, the Windsor report, recommended that they should be excluded.

 

The issue of homosexuality has become the focus of battles between conservative and liberal clergy within the Anglican church. For many traditionalists it a barometer of how faithful the church is being to the Bible’s teaching.

 

A booklet produced by organisers of the conference currently being held in Jerusalem states: “We want unity… but not at the cost of re-writing the Bible to accommodate the latest cultural trend.”

Many Bishops are also concerned at the failure of the Archbishop of Canterbury to take a firmer line with those who flout the church’s teaching.

 

Archbishop Henri Orombi of Uganda said: “Supposing another part of the communion begins to do something which is contrary to the word of God, how is it going to stand up and say no to that? That’s my challenge.”

 

 

Great Stories assembled by Rev. E. Anderson

                                                   

Rev. E. Anderson

MICHAEL’S  STORY BEGINS

At Age Six                             Charlotte Elmore

 

In desperation, I asked if he could be retested. She shook her head and said no. In an attempt to show her just how “normal” Michael really was, I began telling her about all the things that Michael did well. But she brushed my comments aside and stood up, dismissing me. “Michael will be all right,” she said.

 

Later that evening, after Michael and his three-year old sis­ter, Linda, were in bed, I tearfully told Frank what I had le&ned that day. After talking it over, we agreed that we knew our son much better than an IQ test. We decided that Michael’s low score must have been a mistake.

 

Like me, Frank could not believe that our son was “nearly retarded.” Instead, he told me about some of the things Michael recently had done that he felt proved Michael was intelligent…. He said that one night Michael showed an interest in the blue print sketches he was working on, so he found Michael’s set of odd-shaped blocks and quickly sketched two dimensional draw­ings of each of them; Frank then asked Michael to match each block with its corresponding drawing. Frank said he was pleased with how easily Michael made things with his toy construction sets from the diagrams that came with the toys.

 

We moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana, in 1962, and Michael entered Concordia Lutheran High School. His grades warranted his selecting college preparatory courses, including biology, Latin, and algebra-the subject we had been told, when he was back in first grade, he would never be able to handle. Biology soon became his favorite subject. He started telling everyone he was going to be a doctor.

Michael entered Indiana University at Bloomington in 1%5 as a premedical student. By midyear, with a 3.47 grade point average, he had made the dean’s list, and his faculty counselor gave him special permission to take more than the recommended number of course hours. He earned enough credits to be accepted into the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis at the end of his junior year in col­lege.

 

During his first year at medical school, Michael took another IQ test and scored 126, an increase of 36 points. An increase like that was supposed to be impossible.

 

On graduation day, May 21, 1972, Frank, Linda, and I attended the ceremony and hugged our Dr. Mike! After the ceremony, we told Michael and Linda about the low IQ score Michael had received when he was six-as we had planned to do all along. At first, both of them thought we were joking. Since that day, Michael sometimes will look at us and say with a big grin, “My parents never told me that I couldn’t be a doc­tor-that is, not until after I graduated from medical school!” It’s his way of thanking us for the faith we had in him.

 

It has been said that children often live up to what adults expect of them-tell a child he is “dumb” and he may play the part. We often wonder what would have happened if we had treated Michael as “nearly retarded” and imposed a limit on his dreams.

 

 

Christian Prime Timers composed by Rev. E. Anderson

                                         

Rev. E. Anderson

A YOUNG PROTÉGÉ

 

Reading 2 Timothy 1

 

INTRODUCTION

 

In viewing and studying the life and ministry of Timothy one certainly gets the strong idea and impression that he was a young man that was divinely primed and timed by God to serve his day and generation.

 

GOOD NAME: His name has a meaning of immense worth that merits consideration. It implies ‘honoured of God’. He was not only honoured and valued by the apostle, Paul; he had a good standing and relationship with God. He had, as his life reveals, a wholesome accord with heaven that caused him to be spiritually primed and time to serve heaven’s interests on earth. He was a young protégé with a praiseworthy name. LASTING WITNESS: From the New Testament Scriptures, the Acts, Epistles and the letters to Timothy from Paul, there is a permanent record of this young minister who graced the infant Church and played an important role in it. What has been left on sacred record makes it possible to get a true image and understanding of this individual who conducted a vital ministry at a needful time in the Christian Church alongside his mentor, the apostle Paul. He was a young protégé that was to carry and convey enduring testimony to his life and ministry which has touched the whole of Christendom. WORTHY CHARACTER: What is stated of him gives the good impression that he was truly a person of quality nature and that he did manifest godly influence at a crucial stage in his life. He certainly was encouraged by Paul in this but he was ready to respond to wholesome teaching and direction – see 1Timothy 4:12. He was able to set the standard and tone for others and graced the Church in a manner that revealed that he was inspired and motivated by God. FULFILLED MINISTRY: From what is written and recorded of him in the Scriptures, it appears that he was able to function with the apostle in a noble service to Christ, the apostle and the churches in a positive, quiet and distinguished manner. Paul had great confidence in him and his abilities to do a good job, leaving him to establish new believers in Christ and help the churches in many ways. RIGHTLY PRIMED AND TIMED: Reviewing the documentation concerning him it is possible to note the many folks that contributed to his priming and timing. Quite a number of people were at hand at important periods of his life to impart helpful factors that would make him and his ministry.

 

1/.  THE INPUT AND INFLUENCE OF A GODLY GRANDPARENT – 2 Timothy 1: 5; 3: 15;

 

      Mention is made of the fact that he had known the blessing and service of a godly grandmother by the name of Lois. She not only knew the Lord herself and the Scriptures, but sensed the responsibility and need to make sure that her grandson was properly tutored from the earliest moment. She sowed sacred seeds of divine truth within his young mind and heart which evidently took root very early that was to bring forth a greater harvest later on. This older, lady believer knew that her grandson needed to be primed as soon as possible in the knowledge of God and His word, sensing he had a destiny to fulfil of note.

 

‘Lois, the grandmother, appears to have been the first convert to Christianity: she instructed her daughter Eunice, and both brought up Timothy in the Christian faith; so that he had a general knowledge of it before he met with St. Paul at Lystra’ – A. Clarke

 

2/.  THE INPUT AND INFLUENCE OF A GODLY MOTHER – 1Timothy 1: 5

 

      She simply added to what her mother had taught her and he was in the situation where he was prepared to be both nurtured naturally and nourished spiritually. He was ready to be primed from the one that valued him immensely. Lois believed that her son was not only special to her but to the Lord and that she had a charge to fulfil in seeing he was made aware of the Lord and of the importance of the Holy Scriptures in coming to appreciate Him and His ways. Possible the best teacher that any child has is its mother because she knows and understands her child better than any other and it is usual that most children have enormous respect for this loving guardian. The close connection was used to telling spiritual effect.

 

‘The pains, which these two worthy persons took to impress the mind of their son in his childhood with sentiments of piety and virtue, is a fit example for the imitation of all mothers; who, if they take the same pains with their children, may hope that by the blessing of God their care will be followed with the same happy effects’ – Dr. Macknight.

 

3/.  THE INPUT AND INFLUENCE OF A GODLY SERVANT – Philippians 2: 22; Romans 6: 21; 1 Timothy 1: 2

 

      The time came when he met the apostle Paul and in a mutual manner both responded   and rightly reacted to one another in the will and purpose of God – Acts 16: 1-3. Paul found a person who could be taught and trained and made into a travelling associate who would be able to serve Christ, him and the fellowships wherever they went. He would be a humble, teachable protégé and student that would grace Christ’s Church for good and profit. Timothy discovered a man of God who would be an outstanding father – mentor both to his life and work and so there was immediate fusion of spirits that was to remain constant to the end. He was ready at all times to receive godly instruction and be directed by this honest and honourable servant of Christ. This great apostle did everything with his power to prime and time him for a key role as can be noted in the letters wrote to him.

 

4/.  THE INFLUENCE OF A GODLY PRESBYTERY – 1Timothy1: 18; 4: 14

 

Other leaders and elders of churches were to have a shaping and moulding impact upon him. He would meet numberless people who were equally called to exercise a role of leadership within the Christian community and he would be blessed by them. It is apparent that as he commenced his spiritual career and ministry that such did minister in a divine and positive manner that which was to serve as an encouragement for a lifetime’s service – 1 Timothy 1: 18; 4: 14. Through the prophetic he was divinely primed for the work ahead.

 

‘Some think that the foregoing prophecies, refer to revelations which the apostle himself had received concerning Timothy; while others think that the word is to be understood of advices, directions, and exhortations, which the apostle had previously delivered to him’ – A. Clarke

 

CLEMENT OF ROME [Epistle to the Corinthians], states it was the custom of the apostles “to make trial by the Spirit,” that is, by the “power of discerning,” in order to determine who were to be overseers and deacons in the several churches planted. So CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA says as to the churches near Ephesus, that the overseers were marked out for ordination by a revelation of the Holy Ghost to St. John.

 

        5/.  THE INFLUENCE OF GODLY CHURCHES – Philippians 2; 19-23; Colossians 1: 1

 

      Certainly, those churches that he helped to plant and visited with this great apostle-missionary had some service to render to him that helped him in his early ministry. It would seem that Paul encouraged the church at Philippi to render him support and so enable him to a great work amongst them. For some time it appears he had charge in Ephesus and that he had a vital teaching ministry to exercise and he required the churches to respond – 1 Timothy 1: 3. They were in the business of priming him for the work God had for him especially went Paul was taken.

 

CONCLUSION

 

There is still the need for the older and younger generation of leaders to be spiritually bonded together so that the Church of Christ will benefit as a whole. The younger should be prepared to be mentored aright so that they are in position to fill the gaps that are created by the home-call of God’s choice servants.

 

 

 

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