Apr 25, 2012

William Carey

"Young man, sit down! You are an enthusiast"

William Carey was born in Northamptonshire, England. He was just an ordinary boy and when he left school aged 16, Carey became a shoe-maker’s apprentice. Two years later, he attended a prayer meeting that would change his life  forever. Here, he committed his life to Christ. He became an avid reader, ploughing through the Bible and he also loved to read stories of the explorers discovering new parts of the world.

Bit by bit, Carey became gripped by the realization that thousands of people around the world had never heard the gospel and he became convinced that it was the responsibility of the Church to do something about it.

He brought up the subject at a meeting in 1786, asking if the commission from Matt 28:18 was still relevant for the church today.

“Young Man. Sit Down! You are an enthusiast. When God pleases to convert the heathen, he will it without your help or mine”, said the Chairman.

Carey though, was undeterred. He went on to write and print a tract, published in 1792 where he wrote up the arguments for mission.

In 1793,aged 32,Carey set off for India, with his wife Dorothy and three sons.

From his diary in Feb 1795 he wrote

“This indeed is the Valley of the shadow of death for me...Oh what would I give for a sympathetic friend to whom I might open my heart.
But God is here, who not only has compassion, but is able to save to the uttermost”.

Life in India was hard.

Conflict with the authorities, financial problems, terrible heat, and frequent serious sickness, all took their toll.

Carey had to bury his youngest son Peter, who died aged 5 (with his own hands). His wife Dorothy suffered from mental illness (when she saw Carey burying their Kid she became mentally ill).

Carey persevered. He learnt the language and spent hours in Bible translation work. In the evenings and weekends he would go out preaching on foot or horseback. It would be seven years before there was a single convert!

Carey and his team produced numerous manuscripts and translations in many different languages. These included dictionaries, grammar book, and whole versions of the Bible in different languages.

But disaster struck in 1812, when a huge fire broke out destroying most of the work that represented decades of painstaking translation.

He started again. From scratch.

 Carey showed incredible perseverance and unswerving devotion to the Lord and to his work.

 He rebuilt the printing press and went on to produce masses of books and he published translations of the Bible into forty Indian languages! Incredible!

Because of Carey, many missionary societies were formed in the UK and USA.

Carey was truly a pioneer, a hero of faith and has been named the ‘father of modern missions’.

Apr 24, 2012

Martyrs For Christ - Heaven's Qualifiers

Probius Circa 250 AD

Probius was whipped until the blood flowed, then laden with chains and thrown into prison. A few days later, he was brought out and commanded to sacrifice to the heathen gods. He courageously replied,

“Employ your whole power upon me, and you shall find that neither you,
 Nor the emperor,
 Nor the gods you serve,
 nor even the devil who is your father shall compel me to serve idols.”

Probius was eventually killed by the sword.

"I Have to Know"
Thomas Hauker
England 1555

"Thomas", his friend lowered his voice so as not to be heard by the guard.

"I have to ask you this favor. I need to know if what the others say about the grace of God is true.

Tomorrow, when they burn you at the stake, if the pain is tolerable and your mind is at peace, lift your hands above your head.

Do it right before you die. Thomas I have to know."

Thomas Hauker whispered to his friend,
"I will."

The next morning, Hauker was bound to the stake and the fire was lit.

The fire burned a long time, but Hauker remained motionless. His skin was burnt to a crisp and his fingers were gone. Everyone watching supposed he was dead. Suddenly, miraculously, Hauker lifted his hands, still on fire, over his head.

He reached them up to the living God, and then, with great rejoicing, clapped them together three times.

The people there broke into shouts of praise and applause.

Haukers friend had his answer.

This was from the book Jesus Freaks  by DC Talk and VOM

"Yes I Believe in God"

She was 17 years old. He stood glaring at her, his weapon before her face.

“Do you believe in God?” She paused. It was a life or death question.

“Yes I believe in God.” “Why? ”Asked her executioner. But he never gave her a chance to respond.

 The teenage girl lay dead at his feet.

This scene could have happened in the Roman Coliseum. It could have happened in the middle ages.

 And it could have happened in any number of countries around the world today.

People are being imprisoned, tortured, and killed every day because they refuse to deny the name of Jesus.

This particular story did not happen in ancient times, nor in Vietnam, Pakistan, or Romania. 

It happened in Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, on April 20th, 1999

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Apr 22, 2012

The Law of Moses

    An unbeliever of acute mind sought an acquaintance with the truth of the Bible and began to read the Book of Genesis. When he had reached the Ten Commandments, he said to a friend, "I will tell you what I used to think. I supposed that Moses was the leader of a horde of bandits; that, having a strong mind, he acquired great influence over superstition, that the exhibition was supernatural. I have been looking into the nature of that law. I have been trying to see whether I can add anything to it or take anything from it, so as to make it better. Sir, I cannot. It is perfect.
"The first commandment directs us to make the Creator the object of our supreme love and reverence. That is right. If He be our Creator, Preserver, and Supreme Benefactor, we ought to treat Him and none other as such. The second forbids idolatry-that certainly is right. The third forbids profanity. The fourth fixes a time for religious worship. If there be a God, He surely ought to be worshiped. It is suitable that there should be an outward homage, significant of our inward regard. If God be worshiped, it is proper that some time should be set apart for that purpose when all may worship harmoniously and without interruption. One day in seven is certainly not too much, and I do not know that it is too little. The fifth defines the peculiar duties arising from family relations. Injuries to our neighbor are then classified by the moral law. They are divided into offenses against life, chastity, property, and character; and I notice that the greatest offense in each class is expressly forbidden. Thus the greatest injury to life is murder; to chastity, adultery; to property, theft; to character, perjury. Now, the greater offense must include the less of the same kind. Murder must include every injury to life; adultery, every injury to purity; and so of the rest. This moral code is then closed and perfected by a command forbidding every improper desire in regard to our neighbors. I have been thinking, where did Moses get the Law?
"I have read history. The Egyptians and the adjacent nations were idolaters; so were the Greeks and Romans; the wisest and best Greeks or Romans never gave a code of morals like this. Where did Moses get that law which surpasses the wisdom and philosophy of the most enlightened ages? He lived at a period comparatively barbarous; but he has given a law in which the learning and sagacity of all subsequent time can detect no flaw. Where did he get it? He could not have soared so far above his age as to have devised it himself. I am satisfied where he obtained it. It came down from heaven. I am convinced of the truth of the religion of the Bible."

I Just Want To Live Like A TV

One day a teacher of a primary school asked her students to write a essay about what they would like God to do for them.
Later in the evening while checking those essays at home, she came across one that made her very emotional.  Her husband, who just walked in saw her crying, enquired:
 “What happened?”
Handing over a sheet of paper, she answered, “Read this. It's an essay by one of my students”
The essay, “I just want to live like a TV” read as under:
Oh God, tonight I ask you something very special: Make me into a television.  I want to take its place.
Live like the TV in my house. Have my own special place and have my family around ME.
To be taken seriously when I talk . . . I want to be the centre of attention and be heard without interruptions or questions.
I want to receive the same special care that the TV receives even when it is not working.
Have the company of my dad when he arrives home from work, even when he is tired.  And I want my mom to want me when she is sad and upset, instead of ignoring  me . . .
And . . .  I want my brothers to fight to be with me . . .
 I want to feel that family just leaves everything aside, every now and then, just to spend some time with me.
And last but not least make it that I can make them all happy and entertain them.
Lord I don't ask you for much . . .  I just want to live like every TV.”
Tears rolling down her cheek, she looked up at him and calmly said:
“That essay is written by our Son!!!”

The Silversmith

Some time ago, a few ladies met in a certain city to study the scriptures.
While reading the third chapter of Malachi, they came upon a remarkable expression in the third verse:

"And He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver (Malachi 3:3)"
One lady proposed to visit a silversmith, and report to them on what he said about the subject. She went accordingly, and without telling the object of her errand, begged the silversmith to tell her about the process of refining silver.

After he had fully described it to her, she asked,
"But Sir, do you sit while the work of refining is going on?"
"Oh, yes madam," replied the silversmith; "I must sit with my eyes steadily fixed on the furnace, for if the time necessary for refining be exceeded in the slightest degree, the silver will be injured."

The lady at once saw the beauty, and comfort too, of the expression,
"He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."
God sees it needful to put His children into a furnace; His eye is steadily intent on the work of purifying, and His wisdom and love are both engaged in the best manner for
us. Our trials do not come at random, and He will not let us be tested beyond what we can endure.

Before she left, the lady asked one final question,
"When do you know the process is complete?"
"Why, that is quite simple," replied the silversmith.
"When I can see my own image in the silver, the refining process is finished."

-- Author Unknown

Apr 20, 2012

I Belong To Jesus

Bishop John Reed

Bishop John Reed of Sydney, Australia, was preaching in Christ Church Cathedral one Sunday when a 75-year-old woman named Ethel Hatfield got saved.

Mrs. Hatfield had attended that Anglican church for decades, but the message had never gotten through to her until that day.

The following day she came to see Bishop Reed and said,

“I could hardly sleep last night I was so excited about what happened. I want to do something to serve God with the few years I have left.
 I was wondering if I could teach Sunday School.”

Bishop Reed looked at this 75-year-old, white-haired lady and just couldn’t picture her controlling the rambunctious third or fourth grade kids. So he said,
 “I’m sorry, but we don’t have an opening in our Sunday School.”

Her face fell.

Bishop Reed said,
“You mean business, don’t you? I don’t know what kind of service God may have for you, but let’s pray.”

 So they prayed for God to reveal His will for her.

The next day Mrs. Hatfield was out in her yard tending her roses when a Chinese student from Taiwan walked by.

He stopped and complimented her on her roses and they began to talk. She thought,
“He seems like a decent chap; I’ll invite him in for a spot of tea.”

 So she did and she told him her testimony.

He found it an interesting story, so when he had to leave he asked if he could come back and talk further.

 She said,
“Yes, and please bring a friend.”

He came back and brought a friend and she again shared how she had come to put her faith in Jesus Christ after all these years and how Christ had forgiven her sin and given her eternal life.

These students came back and brought more friends, who brought even more.

Within two weeks, Mrs. Hatfield was leading a weekly Bible study with 70 Chinese students in attendance!

She led many of them to personal faith in Jesus Christ.

 That which seemed a hindrance to Mrs. Hatfield’s serving the Lord–her age–God turned into the key to reaching a group of people who respect old age!

None is too old to witness for Christ.

Apr 19, 2012

Narender Reddy- A testimony to the love and the resurrection power of Lord Jesus Christ.

 This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. (1 John 4:10)

Narender Reddy was born into a well to do, staunch upper caste Hindu family with political connections. Surrounded by wealth and friends Narender wanted to impress his friends and his own self by doing daring things as an adolescent. At the age of 13, he began to smoke, drink and get sexually involved.
He secured the money to meet his whims by stealing from his own father’s safe vaults.
As he grew up, he completed his graduation in hotel management and moved to Maldives in 2002, to earn and live on his own. His teenage habits only got the better of him. In 2005 when the tsunami struck at the Indian Ocean, Narender saw the giant waves lashing out and the nature in its fury. He prayed to goddess Kali whom he worshipped to save his life from the peril. He survived and moved to Colombo for a brief stay of 8 months then he returned to Bangalore.

Back home his life became more notorious. Had a gang of 40 members, indulged in alcohol, gambling, making crude country bombs etc. He became an election agent and wielded considerable political power. People feared him. In the meantime he feared that he was HIV infected as many of his gang members who later succumbed to the infection. While he had to go for medical tests to confirm it he decided he flee to Goa and end his life there.

On 10 June 2006, he took Rs.10 lakhs and left home to make it to Australia. He landed in Kaula lampur and he was told that his visa would be arranged in next 3 months. He joined with local agents and started rental business. The city life was fuller of vices. He got into things to make quick bucks. He lent money on huge interest, got money for arranging visas for people. Visited casinos and gambled. When people cheated on him he would use his muscle power to get what he wanted. He called himself “Tiger Narendra.”

One day someone gave him a CD in Telugu titled Kan Vizhigal (eye Opener). He watched it several times while drunk.
He gambled every night and lost all the money he made on most of the nights. He operated chit funds and incurred huge loses. He slipped into heavy debts. His own visa became an issue.
In 2010 during Christmas someone gave him an invitation to join them at the church to hear the gospel but he traveled to Bukit bin tang and spent the evening at a pub.

As his financial problems began to torment him, Narender decided to end his life. On 13 January 2011 he went up the 17th floor of his apartment to jump to his death filled with hopelessness and despair. He heard a voice calling out to him saying why do you want to die, I will clear your debts. Come down.  Eventually he came down but overwhelmed by what was happening he began to bang the door of his apartment and shouted Karma Yeshu, Karma Yeshu!  He fell unconscious. There was a brother Sudhakar in the room while he was in his rage. When he regained his consciousness.
Narender told him that something has happened to him.

A Chinese pastor used to visit the building to share the gospel. Narender heard the word of God and decided to commit his life to the true living God- Jesus Christ.
Previously though he worshipped the Hindu deities, he had done it only to appease them. He had never really cared about his life and his actions on this earth. But this experience with God led him to repent and turn to Christ (Isaiah 43:25 "I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more."). The sacrifice at the cross of Calvary has given him forgiveness and a new life (Romans 4:25 He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification).There was a new thirst and hunger to know the truth that has transformed his life. He was swept by the love of Christ. On 26 March 2011 he took water baptism to follow Christ. He was christened as Paul Narender.

Christ has helped Narender to give up his addictions and live for the glory of God. God has worked graciously and miraculously in dealing with his finances.
He had a debt of 1, 28,000 Malaysian Ringgits. By March 2012 God enabled him to pay back all his debts. His visa problem has been resolved and is presently residing in Malaysia. Narendra has found the eternal joy and peace of the Lord. He prayerfully wants God to lead him in his life so that God’s will and purpose in his life may be fulfilled.
(For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.(Jeremiah 29:11)   

May all glory and honor be to our Lord and Savour Jesus Christ. 

Apr 17, 2012

Children and the Sacrament of Holy Communion

During my  recent visit to Malaysia I was surprised to see children partaking in the Holy communion along with the rest of the congregation, something that we don't do in India.So I enquired about the practice with members of the church who accompanied me . I was told that this was the tradition in the churches in Malaysia.
Should children be invited and encouraged at the Lord's Table, Please share your comments.And as you share your thoughts and facts  I request you to circulate this among your friends and congregations in Malaysia. Even as we discuss this let the truth be revealed from the infalliable Word Of God and our eyes of understanding be enlightened.

Rock Star....Alice Cooper Is A Christian

Rock star Alice Cooper shocked the world in the 1970s with an alcohol-fueled stage show that explored taboos ranging from murder to necrophilia. Years later he shocked the rock world by quietly embracing Christianity.
He’s getting a lot of visibility from his syndicated radio show, “Nights With Alice Cooper,” which is heard 5 nights a week on more than 80 stations around the country. Cooper told a guest, “It’s great, I get to play the anything I want to play.” Interestingly, his musical tastes are far-ranging, from Motley Crue to the Beatles.
He also interviews retro rock stars like Ozzy Osbourne, Joe Perry from AeroSmith, and Brian Johnson from AC/DC.

Besides his radio program, Cooper maintains an active tour schedule. Little known to most people is that he owns AliceCoopersTown in Phoenix, Arizona, his hometown. It is a restaurant that pays homage to baseball, a sport he is passionate about.

He also loves golf, and his Solid Rock Foundation holds an annual golf tournament to aid at-risk youth in the Phoenix area.

While his on-stage antics and the radio show do not settle well with some Christians, Cooper has a vibrant faith. Though he rarely spoke openly about his faith, he did open up some time ago with Lonn Friend, editor of the on-line rock magazine KNAC.COM, Cooper spoke at length about his drinking days, faith in God, and views on the shock-rockers who are following in his footsteps.

Apr 14, 2012

Five star customer service

   One Stormy Night

One stormy night many years ago, an elderly man and his wife entered the lobby of a small hotel in Philadelphia.

Trying to get out of the rain, the couple approached the front desk hoping to get some shelter for the night.

"Could you possibly give us a room here?" the husband asked.

The clerk, a friendly man with a winning smile, looked at the couple and explained that there were three conventions in town.

"All of our rooms are taken," the clerk said.

"But I can't send a nice couple like you out into the rain at one o'clock in the morning.

Would you perhaps be willing to sleep in my room? It's not exactly a suite, but it will be good enough to make you folks comfortable for the night."

When the couple declined, the young man pressed on.

"Don't worry about me; I'll be just fine here in the office," the clerk told them. So the couple agreed.

As he paid his bill the next morning, the elderly man said to the clerk,

 "You are the kind of manager who should be the boss of the best hotel in the United States. Maybe someday I'll build one for you."

The clerk looked at them and smiled. The three of them had a good laugh.

As they drove away, the elderly couple agreed that the helpful clerk was indeed exceptional, as finding people who are both friendly and helpful isn't easy.

Two years passed.

The clerk had almost forgotten the incident when he received a letter from the old man.

It recalled that stormy night and enclosed a round-trip ticket to New York, asking the him to pay them a visit.

The old man met him in New York, and led him to the corner of Fifth Avenue and 34th Street.

He then pointed to a great new building there, a palace of reddish stone, with turrets and watchtowers thrusting up to the sky.

"That," said the older man, "is the hotel I have just built for you to manage."

"You must be joking," the young man said.

"I can assure you I am not," said the older man, a sly smile playing around his mouth.

The older man's name was William Waldorf Astor,

 and the magnificent structure was the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel.

The young clerk who became its first manager was George C. Boldt.

This young clerk never foresaw the turn of events that would lead him to become the manager of one of the world's most glamorous hotels.

"We are not to turn our backs on those who are in need, for we might be entertaining angels".

Life is more accurately measured by the lives you touch than the things you acquire..

Apr 13, 2012

Kamal Saleem: A Muslim Cries Out to Jesus

By Aaron Little, The 700 Club

“Forty-eight percent of Muslims in the United States of America believe that they are Muslim first, American second. Our purpose is to change this country, because they are infidel and what they are doing is not pleasing to Allah. We are the soldier of Allah who will make them do it.
Kamal Saleem was born in Lebanon to a devout Muslim family. As early as four years old, he remembers sitting at the kitchen table while his mother taught him about the Koran and his duty to Allah and Jihad.
“From my childhood, my mom said, ‘One day, you’ll be a martyr, my son. You will die for the sake of Allah and you will exalt Islam. If you kill a Jew, my son, your hand will light up before the throne of Allah and the host of heaven will celebrate what you have done.’”
Kamal was seven when his parents sent him to Muslim training camps to learn to use weapons and engage and kill the enemy.
 The boys were also taught another, more subtle form of warfare…
“We were training for what’s called, ‘Culture Jihad,’ which is shifting cultures. Culture Jihad is unlike the sword, unlike the rifle. It is the Jihad that will come into your world.”
By his 20s, Kamal was chosen to wage Cultural Jihad on America.
“In Islam, liberty, freedom, monarchy, all these are idols and must be brought down. So the liberty that you have in United States of America is anti-Islam, so America must be changed. So I moved to the 'Bible Belt' specifically. The Bible Belt was the strongest of the strongest. That’s where the stout Christians are, and I want to take on the best of the best, because I considered myself as the sword of Islam. I thought, 'I’m anointed. I’m unique. I’m selected. I’m coming to a country and a culture to change it. I have the power of Allah with me.'"
In the early 1980s, Kamal entrenched himself in a small Midwestern town. He began targeting men from poorer neighbourhoods to recruit them to the Muslim faith.
 But one afternoon his life would be in the hands of those he hated the most.
“I was going from one place to another to do recruitment and that day I had a car wreck. The car wreck was so severe, I ejected out of my car, landed on my neck and broke my neck in two places. This man came running to me and said,
 ‘Don’t worry. We’re going to take care of you, and everything’s going to be alright.’
The ambulance came and picked me up and now I go to the hospital. The orthopaedic surgeon in the ER looked at my chart and said, ‘Son, we’re going to take care of you, and everything’s going to be alright.' The second day I wake up in the hospital, and the head of physical therapy came in, read my chart and said the same thing word for word, ‘We are going to take care of you.'”
At first, Kamal was frightened by their words, because these men were all Christians.
“You see, in terrorism, if they say [that], you better run.”
Surgeries to repair Kamal’s broken neck were successful, but recovery would take weeks. After being discharged from the hospital, he would need someone to care for him while he recuperated.
Kamal had no one, so the orthopaedic surgeon opened up his own home to this stranger.
“In his home, they put me in the choicest room with the most beautiful things. I became like part of their family. They didn’t see me any different. They have a basket that says, ‘For Kamal.’ They put in money to free my bills from the hospital.”
Kamal was overwhelmed with the outpouring of Christian love.
As he recovered, he began to help out around the house with cooking and cleaning.
“They have a Jewish friend that came from Israel who they support, and now I’m hugging Israelis and I’m cooking for Jews. I’m going, ‘What has happened to me?’"
When Kamal was able take care of himself and return to his apartment, the doctor had another surprise for him.
“He says,
‘These are the keys to the house, and this is an extra key to your new car. We just want to bless you. You can come any time you want.’
So I go to my home. I go to my cold place that I haven’t been there in months. Dust is this thick. I just gotta settle this issue with my God to know if it’s real or not. So I walk inside, I shut door. I go right to the eastern window, fall on my knees, put my hands to the heavens and I cry out,
‘Allah, Allah my lord and my king. Why have you done such a thing to me? I’m okay with the car wreck. I’m ok with all this, but why did you put me among Christians? I’m confused.
These Christians and Jews, they are good people. There’s nothing wrong with them. They don’t want to kill us. They’re not the same thing that I learned about. Allah. These people have relationship with their God. These people cry out to their God, and He answers them. I want to hear your voice. I want to hear you love me.
 If you’re real, speak to me. I want to hear your voice.' Guess what Allah said that day? Absolutely nothing."
Kamal felt that because he questioned his faith, the honourable thing to do was to end his own life.
“So I went to reach out my gun, put it in the right place and clock out. I heard a voice.
The voice knew me by name.
 It said, ‘Kamal! Kamal! Kamal! Why don’t you call on the Father of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob?’
Now I fell on my knees and put my hands to the heavens immediately as I heard the voice. I cried out with every fiber within me, ‘God, the Father Abraham, if You are real, would You speak to me? I want to know You.’
Well, God of Father Abraham came to the room. He filled the room with His glory. His name was Yahweh, the Lord is one. He has holes in His hands. He has holes in His feet. His name is Jesus.
 I said to Him, ‘Who are you, my Lord? Who are you?’ He said, ‘I am that I am.’
 I said, ‘I’m a simple man with a simple mind. What is that supposed to mean?’ He said, ‘I am the Alpha. I am the Omega. I am the beginning. I am the end. I am everything that is in between. I have known you before I formed the foundation of the earth. I have loved you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Rise up! Rise up Kamal. Come. You are my warrior. You are not their warrior.’ 
I said to Him, ‘My Lord, I will live and die for you.’
 He said, ‘Do not die for me. I died for you so that you may live.’”
That day, instead of taking his life, Kamal gave it to Jesus. He now has a new mission and travels the country challenging Muslims to question their allegiance to Allah.
“My heart’s desire is to reach out to my brothers and sisters, the 1.5 billion Muslims that are living out there. They have not tasted the freedom in God.”
It’s been over 20 years since Kamal left the old faith, and even threats of violence and death cannot stop him from sharing his story.
“He is real. If you’ve never experienced God before in your life, if you never tasted God, if you think you’ve got nothing to lose… when you’re sitting in your home, whether you’re a Muslim or a non-Muslim or a non-Christian or whatever you are, call on the Father of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and say,
‘If You are real, speak to me. I want to hear Your voice.'”