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Learning to Live

Message 1


 One evening I was watching a National Geographic documentary displaying horrifying predatory episodes. One of these episodes shows a shark within another shark's body devouring its siblings. This deadly animal began its life in its mother's womb eating others. It learnt hunting while unborn. You can judge for yourselves what kind of life this animal will lead in its competitive world. 

 As shocking as it is this scenario remarkably shows what physical nature does unless faced with a different force.  The shark we mentioned on the one hand is creating quite a big appetite. But on the other hand is making sure there would be no rivals ahead. It is eliminating any threat of competition. To man it is a lesson that what kind of man you are determines what kind of life you lead.

Living here in this world is not a simple thing. It is a matter of two opposing alternatives. You have either to take this for granted or be in another superior dimension.

The Christian is quite in contrast to the natural phenomenon. It is declared in the scientific community that "survival of the fittest" is a rule of life in this world. It is said that nature is constantly and consistently selecting the best. Unless you can adapt and change you are deleted. This selection and deletion has become the rule of the game even in areas like business, politics and international relations not to mention pop culture.

Break one rule and you are in danger of deletion. No wonder many a church is finding itself in such fatal game. It is hard to find nowadays literal Bible based Christianity. I wonder If Jesus is happy with some of the broad and inclusive interpretation of the faith. Has the Bible become obsolete needing macro-adjustments to the contemporary world?

The tide of civilization is showing apathy to old-fashioned Christianity of the apostles. Consequently, life is becoming quite challenging for those who want to live a godly life. Are we going then to evolve morally and spiritually? Not a simple question to be frank. But evolution as we are witnessing in this world appears to be degeneration. It is becoming predatory, or animal like.

Today is an age where the animal instinct received an unrestricted vent. In an age of sexual revolution and collapsing morality, survival per se is given a great acclaim that everybody is fighting in this direction. The Biblical teaching that adheres to the notion "give room to others" however is proving less feasible for the so called "success". Unless you are on the offensive side you can not make it. So goes the norm of the day.

But do you Christian have the power to navigate otherwise? Paul says get stuffed with such unique power if you are to make it. In prayer he wants the Christian "to be strengthened with power by his Spirit in the inner man." Ephesians 3.16 (Darby Translation - emphasis added). The gravity of the running philosophy of success is so powerful that you need extra power to neutralize it and even to be more. You need such spiritual vigor, a spiritual high gear to cruise the running current. 

It is a matter of fact that unless you are of a sturdy nature, this world is filled by whatever is destructive to the Christian. You need another software to live uncorrupted and protected life. Jesus made it clear that evil reigns in this world, but he further says this can never have a prey on him. Yes he said, "the ruler of the world comes, and in me he has nothing" (John 14.30, Darby). What about in you?

Like the shark above, the Christian is born-equipped. Though we have to discover it through experience, we have already the needed energy of life. We quote again Paul as saying "for we are his workmanship, having been created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has before prepared that we should walk in them." (Ephesians 2.10, Darby). So then, it is up to the Christian to learn to shift gear in the face of the storms of life mentioned as "cares and riches and pleasure of life." (Luke 8.14, Darby).

May I suggest in concluding that we believers need continuous recharging and rechecking of our life force - namely God's Spirit.

For the grace of God which carries with it salvation for all men has appeared, teaching us that, having denied impiety and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, and justly, and piously in the present course of things, awaiting the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all lawlessness, and purify to himself a peculiar people, zealous for good works. (Titus 2.11-14, Darby)


A Presence 

In silence I heard

A hint of life breath

That for a force I took

But is the source, the Presence.


Beyond reach, it's untouchable

For the eyes it is invisible

It is past finding to pursue

Search though you do without clue.


Many a saint say is sweat

Speak of it as "He"

Sing of Him and be free

Praise a Presence in Majesty.


Within though dwelling

Is infinite

Fiery though glaring

                   Is silent-still.


In Him partake I vigor

In Him receive I power

In Him My life has purpose

In Him abide life's essence.


This He is a Spirit - a Presence

My Savior sent me - a Comforter

He bestows powers - abilities

Above all love encounter - My Jesus.