Word Studies

                                     

                                 Rev. K. W. Munday

WORD STUDIES

Word Studies is presented by Rev. K. W. Munday, retired minister and former General Secretary of Assemblies of God for many years. He has served the body of Christ with grace and distinction, is an excellent, quality preacher and speaker, broadcaster, writer of books and still active in Christian service. His contributions here on Word Studies should prove a great means of blessing, inspiration and instruction.

NOBODY

The word usually describes a person of little worth or importance.

Sometime ago a friend handed me a CD entitled ‘The diary of a nobody’, so I put it on the player and listenedaa.and listened … and listened, but there was nothing there. Whether my friend’s recorder was malfunctioning or whether it was a hoax I have not yet had the courage to enquire.

Of course, the rea1 literal definition of a nobody would be ‘a disembodied spirit’ but we won’t go into metaphysics at this point.

I should imagine that one reaches the status of being a nobody in one of four ways. 1. Suffering from an inferiority complex. 2. Other people’s attitudes. 3. Lack of talent or expertise or 4. Abject humility and lack of self-esteem. Such people are not solitary personalities. They merge with the crowd and even get lost in it. They live bland lives. It must lie very demoralizing.

The thing is, the State will not acknowledge nobodies. In society generally (rogues excepted) we are all identifiable. We are not only known by our names but also by our numbers on Bank and Utility service accounts etc. So although the nobodies may seem to live on the periphery of things they to must pay taxes and obey the law, and of course they are entitled to all the benefits (if they’re not too shy to apply for them!) .

But what abut nobodies who became somebodies? A schoolboy at the age of ten was greatly discouraged by his teacher when told that he would never really make anything in life. His name was Albert Einstein. The late Sir Winston Churchill never excelled at Latin, but went on to save a whole continent from dictatorship.

But the Bible has a lot more examples. When the prophet Samuel was looking to anoint the future king of Israel he interviewed the sons of a man called, Jesse. They were duly introduced … Eliab. Abinadab, Shamah and four others. ‘Have you any more?’ asked Samuel. The answer was that there was the youngest but he was away looking after some sheep. It sounds as though he was regarded as the nobody of the family. But he was the man. His name was David and the rest is history.

On another occasion when God spoke to Gideon he felt that he was a nobody and told God so. ‘My family is poor and I am the least in my father’s house’ he said. But God replied ‘I will be with you thou mighty man of valour’, and there was another nobody who became somebody.

In the New Testament we have a remarkable statement. It says that God called ‘them that are not’. That probably referred to Roman slaves who had no citizenship and thus no civil rights, but they became Christians, and surely those who become children of God are truly somebody in the nicest sense.

                            

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Wisdom’s Ways

                                             

                                         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

HYPOCRISY HURTS

”An hypocrite ….. destroyeth his neighbour”   – Proverbs 11: 9

Justice is one: evil is many. There is only one right way, there are innumerable false paths. The way of the righteous is simple – he just goes straight forward; the unrighteous know no settled road, his feet are beset with many by-paths and alluring by sections. Thus we find the just man contrasted with the wicked, that is, those wholly set against God; and with transgressors, that is, those who deliberately defy God; and now with hypocrites, that is, those whose impiety is masked with a show of goodness. Such polluted men (for so is the Hebrew word) have a poisonous effect on society; they infect the stream of life.

The folly of pretence: The hypocrite puts on an act so often that he eventually convinces himself, and lives a lie. He envies the purity of the pure and the integrity of the righteous tosuch a degree that he slanders the just, ascribing selfish motives to his charity, in supressed superstition to his faith and doubtful reality to his religion. He is unscrupulous in his accusation; he flings mud of his own mixing in the hope that some will stick. The smoke that rises from the altar fire he attributes to a debauched idea of God; he credits good works to the account of self-interest: piety is posited as hypocrisy (reflection of his own evil nature); sanctity is reduced, – in his insinuation, to sanctimony. His intention is to destroy his neighbour – a better man than himself.

The features of reality: But a just man fears neither the taunts nor the innuendoes of the hypocrite. His integrity is a defence against false evidence, his openness a rebuke to deceit and his consistency the best argument against the jibes and jeers of the evil man. For men applaud honesty, even though they themselves may sometimes offend, and appreciate justice, though their own lives may fall short of their own ideals. The just man lives his normal life not allowing any attack upon his character or reputation to divert him from the straight path he has got before him. Thus the lies of the accuser are ultimately exposed and the triumph of the good is established. Any temporary hurt or embarrassment is eventually overcome – for right must win in God’s world.

PRAYER

Make me proof against evil this day, O Lord.

                                

Powerful Quotes

                                      

                                       Rev. L. Goodwin

QUOTES

Put your trust in God, but keep your powder dry – Oliver Cromwell

To accomplish great things, we must not only act but also dream, not only plan but believe Anatole France

It is a blessed thing that in every age someone has had the individuality enough and courage enough to stand by his own convictions Robert Greene Ingersoll

They can because they think they canVirgil – Roman Poet

I am an optimist. But I am optimist who takes his raincoat Former Harold Wilson – Labour Statesman

I never knew an early-rising, hard working, prudent man, careful of his earnings, and strictly honest, who complained of bad luck Joseph Addison – English essayist

There is only one failure in life that is possible, and that is, not to be true to the best one knows – Frederic Farrar – English clergyman and writer

                              

Prayer Dynamics

                                            

                                     Rev. E. Anderson

THE SECRET PLACE

Reading   Matthew 6

Text      v3

Introduction

Christ gave a lot of teaching on prayer and each factor was of vital importance to be considered and applied. Here He lays the emphasis on prayer being of a personal private nature for it to be effectual.

1/.  SECRET PRAYER MUST BE PERSONALLY CONDUCTED IN PRIVATE

A quiet reserved place must be sought and kept for a special and particular purpose, to meet with the Father and it is to be of private order. No one else or nothing must be allowed to intrude or interfere with this meeting and commitment. It is to be top priority and is first thing on the agenda. The Father waits for this to be our desire and action. He allows no one or nothing to over-rule this. There has to be shutting out of everyone and everything else. There is a seeking of a personal and private audience.

Illustration: How often Christ was alone with the Father – top priority

2/. SECRET PRAYER IS HAVING A GREAT ACCORD WITH GOD THE FATHER

The thing about shutting the door is the will to have real fellowship with the Father besides bringing issues of prayer to Him. It is essentially getting to know the Father as Father and appreciating His fatherhood. Prayer is linked to both. There is a discovery of Him and His will and this makes all the difference in the prayer time.

3/. SECRET PRAYER MEANS PRAYING OVER THINGS THAT THE FATHER AGREES WITH AND DESIRES TO BE BROUGHT TO PASS

It is essential to know a real agreement with the Father in knowing what He desires to and bring to pass. It is His great will that must be accomplished through the means of prayer. Prayer in secret to and with God conditions us to this factor. One becomes happy with what He desires and there is the will to pray in line with it.

4/. SECRET PRAYER IS PURPOSED TO YIELD TREMENDOUS ANSWERS

The blessed consequence is that there is the action of God in response. What has been privately revealed will be evident pubically. The answers given by God will be obvious that He has intervened and demonstrated His power. The raising of Lazarus was the result of Christ praying – John 11: 41; 17: 1.

CONCLUSION 

The important thing is to do it and prove it. It is important and imperative that this should be entered into and such makes demands of the Christian believer.

                               

Messages of Note

                                       

                                      Rev. E. Anderson

ETERNITY AND TIME

George Osborne

The Oxford dictionary gives the definition of the word Eternal’ as: ‘existing always’; ‘without beginning or end’. Therefore God is the only One whoi is Eternal for he is the only One Who has no beginning neither does He have an ending.

The first verse of the Bible – Genesis 1: 1 says: ‘the beginning God created the heaven and the earth’, and verses 3-5 says: ”And God said, “Let there be light: and there was light … …And God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. And the evening and the morning was the first day”. That is how time began. The Eternal God, when He created this world created time. Furthermore, ever before God created this world He knew that Sin would ruin everything, so He planned in eternity past to send His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to save us and to redeem us. The Bible tells us that in the mind of God Christ was as a Lamb slain before the foundation of the world.

The history of mankind is divided into two periods B.C. and A.D. – before Christ and after Christ. The Bible speaks of ‘Time’ as being a period between eternity past and eternity future. Time is not eternal; there will be an end to time. In the Book of the Revelation chapter 10 verse 6 the angel announces that there should be time no longer. So then, whilst we are now living in this period of time we can decide where we are going to spend eternity.

As a nine-year-old school boy, I remember our teacher handing us a piece of paper and telling us to write our names and the date on the top. I often wondered then if I would ever see the year 2000. To a nine-year-old boy, for someone to live to be 80 seemed a very long time. However, at I 1.59pm on December 31 1999 1 wrote down 31/12/1999 and the next minute I wrote: 1/1/2000. I had no idea whether or not I would live to see the year 2000, but by faith I know that I will live on after time is no more. I will live for ever. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” – John 3:16.

Over the triple doorways of the Cathedral of Milan there are three inscriptions spanning the splendid arches. Over one is carved a beautiful wreath of roses and underneath is the legend: “All that which pleases is but for a moment”. Over the other is sculptured a cross, and the words, “All that which troubles us is but for a moment”.  But underneath the great central entrance to the main aisle is the inscription: “THAT ONLY IS IMPORTANT WHICH IS ETERNAL”.

                              

Meeting the Christian Ministers

                                

                          Rev. David and Lesly Lakin

MOVING ON AFTER 35 YEARS

AFTER A REMARKABLE 35 YEARS of service, Dave and Lesley Lakin have handed on the senior leadership of King’s Christian Centre, Birmingham. The weekend of 19th September witnessed the occasion, as Dave, both physically and spiritually, handed the baton on to new pastor Kirk McAteer and his wife Tracee.

The new Australian pastor worked hard with others who Dave had impacted during his ministry, and the Saturday night saw a This is Your Life style event (based on the old TV show), which came as a bolt from the blue for Dave and Lesley.

Dave had initially been the youth pastor at King’s Christian Centre, back in the days when it was known as Calvary Temple, before taking over as senior minister from Fred Weaver in 1990.

Fred was present as the big red book’ of Dave’s life was opened by Aaron Partington, a former youth pastor at the church. He told everyone about his handover to Dave. Tears flowed freely, many more of laughter than sadness, as the church remembered the life and times of Dave and Lesley. The building was packed to capacity as visitors from around the country came to pay their dues, mingling with church family past and present.

Many who have moved on to pastures new returned to show their appreciation for the Lakins, and the impact which the pair had on their lives.

There were quite a few current members of the Church who had grown up with the couple as their youth leaders and then pastors, and are now part of the congregation with children of their own! Dave’s involvement with the Royal Rangers, children’s ministry was honoured as some previous members he had taught marched down the aisle and saluted. The couple’s youth and children’s work reached far wider than Birmingham, reaching young people up and down Britain through their famous annual summer camps.

Throughout the evening, Dave and Lesley were surprised again and again by friends and colleagues appearing on stage or via video from around the world.

Perhaps the most surprising of the video messages came from ‘Freddy’, Dave’s long- lost ventriloquist dummy.

Dave had thought he’d been stolen years ago, but it turned out that he’d simply escaped to make a new life for himself in Hollywood! The night was full of the fun and laughter which Dave and Lesley bring to all who know them. This was a major theme of the night, along with teamwork, with which Dave and Lesley have worked tirelessly for the church and for God.

After Fred Weaver had regaled the audience with tales of Dave’s induction, Sunday morning came and it was time for Dave to hand over responsibility to Kirk.

AoG’s national leader John Partington was present to lead the meeting and Dave and Lesley formally handed over the baton of leadership to Kirk and Tracee.

Addressing the congregation, Dave reminded them that God had appointed this change-over and affirmed the new minister, saying that he was leaving the church in good hands.

                             

Leadership Factors

                                  

                                    Rev. E. Anderson

COMMUNICATING VISION:

Paul remembers who they were and are – Ephesians 2: 1-1O

Taken from the John Maxwell’s Leadership Bible

Paul took time to reflect on our past failures and God’s present redemption. He insists that God not only raised Jesus up and sat Him in heavenly places above all authority – Ephesians 2: 20, 21, but He did the same for us  2: 4-6. We must identify with Christ in His life, death, resurrection, and ascension. We have been raised with Christ. No wonder Paul could lead with such boldness! He lived and led off of this paramount truth.

What must we do to experience the same kind of authority in Christ? Paul gives the answer.

1/. RENEW YOUR PERSPECTIVE – Colossians 3: 1-3

We must think like God thinks. We must see ourselves as He does and fix our minds on Him. We must base our life ion this position rather than our experience.

2/. RELEASE YOUR PAST – Galatians 2: 20

We must let go of old patterns. We will never lead in an empowering way if we hold on to our old self, our old baggage, our old citizenship. We must die to the past.

3/. REMEMBER YOUR PURPOSE – Ephesians 1: 3-12

We drift when we lose sight of why God left us on earth. Our goal is to participate in God’s redemptive plan for the world. If we embrace purpose, we gain power.

                          

Great Stories

                                            

                                         Rev. E. Anderson

THE RELEASE I LONG FOR

In God’s Smuggler, brother Andrew tells in the first couple of chapters the story of his early life – one section of which he dealt with his hell-for-leather days in the Dutch army in Indonesia.

While serving in that area, fighting against Sukarno in the late 1940s he bought a young ape, a gibbon, who took to him, and Andy treated him as a pet in the barracks. He hadn’t had the gibbon for many reeks before he noticed that when he touched it in some areas around the waist it seemed to hurt him. So he examined the gibbon more closely and found a raised welt that went around his waist.

He carefully laid the animal down on his bed and pulled back the matted hair from this welt until he could see what was causing the problem. He discovered that evidently when the gibbon had been a baby someone had tied a piece of wire around his middle and had never taken it off. As the monkey grew larger the wire became embedded in his flesh. Obviously, it must have caused him a great deal of discomfort. So that evening Andrew began the operation, taking his razor and shaving off all the monkey’s hair in a three-inch-wide swath around his middle.

While the other boys in the barracks looked on, he cut ever so gently into the tender flesh until he exposed the wire. The gibbon lay there with the most amazing patience. Even when he obviously was hurting him the gibbon looked up with eyes that seemed to say, “I understand,” until at long last he was able to get down to the wire, cut it, and pull it away.

Instantly, as soon as the operation was over, the gibbon jumped up, did a cartwheel, danced around his shoulders, and pulled Andy’s hair in joyful glee to the delight of all the boys in the barracks. ”After that, my gibbon and l were inseparable. I think I identified with him as strongly as he with me. I think l saw in the wire that had bound him a kind of parallel to the chain of guilt still so tight around myself.-and in his release, the thing l too longed for ”.

                                 

 

Focus

                                      

                                    Rev. E. Anderson

ANYBODY CAN BE A CONSULTANT

Then Bildad the Shuhite replied: “When will you end these speeches? Be sensible. And then we can talk” – Job 18: 1-2

It’s amazing how quickly the fixer-uper of the world show up when we find ourselves overcome with trauma, misery, and trouble. They love to play the role of the white knight, and the deeper the trouble, the more dramatic the rescue.

Although Job’s friends provided some comfort at the beginning, they couldn’t resist putting on their helper hats. They had lots of good theories about why he was suffering. They peered into the deepest recesses of his life, informing Job of all the things that were wrong and what he should do about them. As armchair quarter- backs who had never played the game, they gave him the best advice they could.

At best, however, Job’s friends were simply consultants who did not realise that the most obvious explanation is not always the right one. They couldn’t comprehend the depths of his experience and the pain of his life, and they certainly didn’t understand the theology of what they were discussing.

Every one of his friends thought Job was suffering because he had done some- thing wrong. That made their argument easy. It sounded so logical, so fair, so reasonable, and so spiritual. The only problem was that they were wrong. So instead of helping Job, they bombaster him with thirty-four chapters of baseless blabbing.

We won’t adopt their theology, but we can learn a thing or two from Job’s friends. Their example teaches us that we should be careful about floating out solutions and answers to people who are facing difficulty. To give conclusive advice without really understanding the situation is foolhardy, perhaps even dangerous.

We also should be careful about buying into answers from others too quickly. If Job had begun to agree with his friends at any point along the way; he would have been in a heap of trouble by the time God showed up at the end of the book.

How quick are you to offer advice to people who are hurting? Are you a true friend or merely a consultant?

                             

Contemporary Considerations

                              

                                    Rev. Rick Warren

CONFIDENT IN GOD’S FORGIVNESS
by Rick Warren

“Look straight ahead with honest confidence; don’t hang your head in shame” – Proverbs 4:25 TEV.

You don’t need to walk around carrying a load of guilt. The Apostle Paul says, “Yes, all have sinned; all fall short of God’s glorious ideal; yet now God declares us ‘not guilty’ of offending him if we trust in Jesus Christ, who in his kindness freely takes away our sins” – Romans 3:23-24 TLB.

God wants to forgive you. Imagine a giant blackboard with all of your sins written across it and God comes along with a giant eraser and erases it all. It’s like an etch-a-sketch. You turn it upside down and shake it, turn it back up and the slate is clean. That’s good news, isn’t it?

But we need to accept God’s forgiveness. We may know about God’s forgiveness intellectually, but to believe it, deep down inside, accepting, in faith, that it is true. Because it is!

And one thing that often blocks us from accepting forgiveness from God is that we are unable to forgive ourselves. You need to forgive yourself for your past failures and sins, for the habits and hang-ups that led you to sin. Forgive yourself!

God wants you to forgive yourself. He teaches us to “Look straight ahead with honest confidence; don’t hang your head in shame” – Proverbs 4:25 TEV.

Have you ever committed a sin and asked God to forgive you, and even though you know He’s forgiven you, you still feel lousy? What do you do in that situation? Do you go back and ask Him to forgive you again? Confess it again, over and over?

No. You only have to confess a sin one time and it’s forgiven. But you may have to forgive yourself a hundred times and say it over and over until it sinks in: “God’s forgiven me. It’s over.”

Our problem is, we want to keep reminding God of things He’s already forgotten. It’s forgiven and forgotten. You’ve already dealt with it. Someone once asked Eleanor Roosevelt, “How did you accomplish so much with your life?” She said, “I never waste time with regrets.”

Don’t waste time with your regrets: accept God’s forgiveness and forgive yourself. 

                                 

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