Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Salvation: The Great Divine Feast

Every human heart longs for Moksha or salvation. Religions advise us the various means to achieve Moksha. However, the Bible teaches that Moksha is not something to be achieved but to be experienced.
It is all centered on the life of Jesus Christ. The statement that ‘Christ died’ is based on historical facts. No one seems to disagree that there lived a person called Jesus Christ and he was crucified by the Romans at the behest of some Jewish leaders. Biblical revelation goes on to say that his death was in my place for the atonement of my sins. Or in other words, the Bible claims that ‘Jesus died for me.’
The Bible goes on to say that I don’t have to do anything for my own salvation except just believe this truth. Thus, the Bible nullifies every human effort to get salvation by their own effort be it praying at shrines, making pilgrimages, etc.
It is a wonderful truth that God has saved the sinful humanity at the time of the death of Christ and to be born centuries after that event. However, it doesn’t become their experience unless they believe that divine action was for them. So, each individual has to appropriate their salvation by faith. Bible very categorically proclaims this truth: ‘If you believe and confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, you will be saved.’
Salvation or moksha can be compared to a great dish that God has prepared for humanity. It is like a potion that would make us righteous in the eyes of God. This potion will restore a relationship with God that we lost. However, each individual has to drink it. That act of drinking is what is called faith in Jesus or believing that Jesus did what I should have done to achieve my salvation.

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Just as I am

In one of his sermons CH Spurgeon talks about a person who wanted to paint a mural in the town-centre. He wanted to portray the typical scene in the life of his city. A must-be character in the mural was certainly the muncipal sweeper. At the request of the painter, the sweeper turned up in the studio ready to pose for the picture. However, he was sent back. He had turned up with a hair-cut, clean-shaven and in his best dress. That is not how the painter wanted him to be in the picture that depicts the life in the town. That is not the way he turns up every day for work in the street.
Our life in the presence of God should be ‘just we are.’ If we do all the tidying up and hide our real self God cannot help us. Obeying the command ‘be holy as I am holy’ begins with an admission of our worthlessness and guilt. That admission is the first step in seeking divine intervention in our lives.
Putting on a pretention is the most dangerous thing to do. When we catch up with friends, we always inquire of their health. However, many of my friends tell me they are fine though they do not appear to be well to me. Then out of love and sometimes out of curiosity, I ask them have they been to doctor recently. In most of the cases, the answer ‘No.’ They had been pretending to be well though they are not. They don’t want anyone to tell them that they are not well. So, they avoid doctor and friends who will tell them they are not well.
Unless sick persons admit that they are sick, they cannot be healed. So is also with God. We need to admit that we need God’s help in our lives. Our life is something that we cannot manage on our own. God call us to come to him and to be clean. ‘Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.’ (Isaiah 1:8).

Turn dire circumstances for the glory of God

The way we face the dire circumstances in our life could lead to the wider glory of God. The story of Daniel illustrates that point well. ...