the christian pulse THE MAGAZINE FOR MYCHRISTIANDAILY.COM.AU September 2015 • issue three • www.mychristiandaily.com.au
THE GODFATHER MAFIA MOBSTER
FRANZESE TURNS TO CHRIST DE FACTO RELATIONSHIPS
BIBLICAL OR NOT? DISCOVERING THE LOST ART OF
MEDITATION GOD’S WAY
MALAYSIAN HEALTH MINISTER HAS A SUPERNATURAL
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CONTENTS issue three • september 2015
08 CHRISTIANITYWORKS De Facto Relationships - Biblical or Not?
13 MEDITATION Meditation - God’s Way...
11 COVER STORY The Godfather: Leaving the Mafia and Living to Tell the Story
16 SUPERNATURAL Malaysia Has a Touch From God
ABN 58 090 450 285 CEO Matt Danswan Editor Lynn Goldsmith Art Director Nicole Danswan Advertising Australia P: 02 9007 5375 Advertising New Zealand P: 09 281 4896
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Advertising Manager Ray Curle firstname.lastname@example.org Correspondence Australia PO Box 1321 Mona Vale NSW 1661 P: 02 9007 5376 www.mychristiandaily.com Correspondence New Zealand PO Box 318 334, West Harbour, Auckland 0661
20 ISRAEL Israel And The Re-Think On What God Is Doing 22 MARKETPLACE The Christian Pulse Classifieds
Unless otherwise specified, all Scripture quotations are from the New International Version, copyright-1973, 1978, 1984, International Bible Society. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or part, without prior written permission. Opinions expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect those of the staff. All attempts are made to verify advertising material, and no responsibilty is taken for misleading or erroneous material. Copyright 2015 www.inititatemedia.net
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“Just because I’m Billy Graham’s grandson, it doesn’t mean I get a free ride to heaven, there’s no free tickets lying around.” WILL GRAHAM
Radio presenter MATT PRATER’S candid interviews with: Mac Powell • Will Graham • Brother Yun Roma Downey • Norma King • Stephen Lungu Wayne Cordeiro • Neil Johnson • Jan Buchanan
volume one Radio presenter Matt Prater’s candid interviews with: Mac Powell • Will Graham • Brother Yun Roma Downey • Norma King • Stephen Lungu Wayne Cordeiro • Neil Johnson • Jan Buchanan
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FROM THE EDITOR
From the Editor
love putting my letter together for each issue of the magazine. It allows me to express what is happening in the world at the present time – and there’s always something! God did say that things would happen that we didn’t fully understand or like but we are to look to Him as the author and finisher of our faith. Recently I had a remarkable interview with a man who had been in the Mafia and came out alive! He had made more money for the Mob than Al Capone – but God had other ideas for his life. I expected, well I didn’t know what to expect…. but he was a softly spoken, gentle man totally committed to Jesus Christ. Read his story inside.
Let not your heart be troubled JOHN 14:1
I also spoke to the former Minister for Health for Malaysia, and he also has a remarkable story for you to read. He had so much to tell me, that I needed to put it into a book! A story of healing and deliverance! If you have been thinking about meditation, we have something for you to read and contemplate. It is meditating on God ‘s presence and His Word and I must say, I have begun to practice this every morning and it is wonderful. I pray you will be encouraged and inspired as you read this publication. God Bless, Lynn Goldsmith
Join us as Grammy Award winner, Rebecca St James, lifts us in song and praise. Dr Michael Youssef will lead us on a journey to discover the value of your soul.
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De Facto Relationships’ – BIBLICAL OR NOT? So, de facto relationships are becoming more and more common. Let’s hitch up, let’s live together and see how it goes. It seems to make sense. Sure, why not? And yet … that’s not God’s perfect plan for you, for me, or for anyone else that matter. So if it isn’t, you have to ask … why not? WORDS: BERNI DYMET
8 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
ack when I was young, we’re talking the 1960’s and 70’s here, a man and a woman living together without being married was an absolute scandal. A woman falling pregnant outside marriage – well, that was pretty much unthinkable. Today, both those things represent a perfectly valid lifestyle choice. The question is; is it progress? Or is it a retrograde step that’s decaying the very fabric of our society? Right there, you have the divide between liberalism and conservatism that seems to dominate the politics of many a country. I’m going to tell you right up front what I think and why. I believe that God’s plan is for a man and a woman – and only a man and a woman – to be joined together in a life–long relationship of marriage. A permanent, intimate relationship – emotional, spiritual, physical, financial – the whole kit and caboodle. The whole nine yards. The cottin’ pickin’ lot. All in, boots and all! At this point, some people might want to brand me a conservative, a fundamentalist, a bigot and anything else they can think of. It seems that these
days, when we disagree with someone, what we do, is we hurl a label at them that has derogatory connotations, as a way of marginalising their perspective. This happens particularly when Christians express views that go against popular opinion and the ‘wisdom of the day’. Which from my perspective is fine … I’ve been called a lot worse! Anyhow, it seems to me, that when we’re talking about what constitutes a family, people have very short memories. It’s only in the last thirty to forty years, well within my lifetime, that first the extended family and then the nuclear family was the norm. Where marriage was the appropriate way to express the love between a man and a woman. Where marriage was the only place in which to bring children into the world. All of that was based largely on the Judeo–Christian ethics that come from, yes, you guessed it … the Bible. Well, today many have rejected marriage as an anachronistic institution. And let’s face it sex drives a lot of that thinking. We don’t like to talk about it too much, but we’re all sexual beings and the sex
Because Life Doesn’t Stop
drive is an incredibly powerful drive – and rightly so. It’s part of God’s plan and God’s design, to make sure that we continue to be abundant and multiply and fill the earth. (Well, that bit seems to be working just fine!!) But God’s plan for sex is also to bind people – a man and a woman – together in a life–long relationship. Jesus, quoting the book of Genesis, puts it this way: For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate. (Matt 19:5) God’s good and perfect will is for a lifelong relationship of commitment and intimacy between a man and a woman. And intimacy is more than sex. It’s a deep emotional connection that finds its fulfilment in a man and a woman exclusively sharing their lives, their bodies … their everything, with one another. It’s a beautiful plan. It’s God’s very best for us. And so I look at this whole ‘living together’ thing, de facto relationships without commitment … and I ask myself:
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“By definition, love cannot be love unless it’s based on commitment. So–called LOVE WITHOUT COMMITMENT IS JUST A FORM OF MANIPULATION, getting what you want out of the relationship. And when you’re done, hey, just walk away...”
Why would you possibly want to do that? Why would you want to settle for second best? I’ve spoken to women who have decided to live with men rather than getting married, and they’re biggest complaint is the lack of commitment and certainty. There’s an old saying that women give sex in order to get love and men give love in order to get sex. Now, that may seem a little cynical, but there’s quite some truth in that. I remember one woman, living with a man, saying to me – My mother told me never to live with a man, because if you do, he won’t want to marry you. I think she was right. We live in an era where values of courage, of persistence, of sacrifice, of discipline, of commitment are being undermined, eroded through the self– centredness of a consumer society in which we have so much choice as to how we can entertain ourselves and fulfill ourselves. (Although let’s be honest, filling ourselves never delivers the fulfilment we’re looking for.) How much of not making the commitment of marriage, falls into this self–centredness that we’ve bred ourselves into, I wonder? Well, what I’ll do is that I’ll try before I buy. I’ll live with her, or him as the case many be, and we’ll see if it works. If we’re compatible! That’s the mentality. Well let me tell you – no man and woman are completely compatible. They are going to drive each other nuts sometimes. They are going to hurt each other sometimes. They are going to tread on each other’s toes and get in each other’s space sometimes. And when your partner is driving you completely bonkers,
the one thing that keeps you together isn’t the great sex I have to tell you, or all the romantic notions that you had when you set out on this journey. What keeps you together is the commitment that you made to one another when you took your marriage vows. It’s that sense of inviolable commitment that causes you to forgive. It’s that sense of commitment that causes you to cover up the faults of the other and to compensate for them. By definition, love cannot be love unless it’s based on commitment. So–called love without commitment is just a form of manipulation, getting what you want out of the relationship. And when you’re done, hey, just walk away. That is not God’s plan. That is not God’s best. And I have to tell you, I have never met a couple who abstained from sexual intimacy until they were married, who regretted that. But I have met plenty of people who have had multiple sexual partners and are now married, who regret their sleeping around. The last thing I am being here is a prude. God invented sex. It was His plan not just for procreation of the species, but for an intimate bond, a becoming of one flesh, in which children could be brought into the world, nurtured by their mother, taught and disciplined and strengthened by their father, in a family unit of love and safety, based on the certain knowledge of commitment. My counsel to any couple, young or old, thinking about just living together, just shacking up together, just sleeping together, is … DON’T. If you are in a de facto relationship, get
married. Make the commitment formal. And if your partner doesn’t want to get married, get out. That may seem harsh, but a lack of willingness to marry is a clear sign, an obvious sign of a lack of commitment. God places a high premium, a very high premium on marriage. Let marriage be held in honour by all, and let the marriage bed be kept undefiled; for God will judge fornicators and adulterers. (Hebr 13:4) In other words make marriage a high priority and keep it pure. Great advice. Really. I would hate to wake up every day wondering whether my ‘partner’ is committed to me. As it is, I know that my wife is committed to me. And that is such a blessing. I think the mistake that we make is that we think that God is all about ‘don’t do this and don’t do that’, when all along, like any good dad, He just wants the best for us. His very best. So I come back to it – why are so many people settling for second best or third or fourth best? What’s the matter with us that we’re prepared to believe the lies of this world – rather than the pure truth of a God who only has His best in mind for us? Seems like a pretty messed up way of looking at things if you ask me.
Berni Dymet is the ceo of the global media ministry – Christianityworks. His radio and television broadcasts reach millions of people each week in over 160 countries around the world. For instant access to his free, daily eDevotional, stop by at edevotional.net
And so I look at this whole ‘living together’ thing, de facto relationships without commitment … and I ask myself: Why would you possibly want to do that? Why would you want to settle for second best? 10 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
The night I took my oath, in October 31 1975 for the Mafia, there were six of us who took this and I’m the only one alive today, the others were murdered..
THE GODFATHER: WORDS: LYNN GOLDSMITH
ow do you interview someone who was in the Mafia and walked away from the notorious crime gang alive? Well, that was an experience and, I must say, an amazing one. Michael Franzese is a gentle, softly spoken, humble and sincere man. He is totally committed to God and wants the world to know his story. I feel privileged to have met Michael and to be part of relating his wonderful and powerful story to the public. Michael Franzese was a New York mobster and captain of the Colombo crime family. After finishing high school, Franzese entered Hofstra University and started a pre-med program studying to be a doctor. However in October 1975 Franzese decided to quit college to take care of this father and work for the Colombo family. By the late 1980s, he had become a caporegime, or captain, of a crew. I asked him how dangerous it was while working with the Mob. He
LEAVING THE MAFIA AND LIVING TO TELL THE STORY....
explained, “There were high and low points. High was that I had a tremendous amount of success - with that came money and power. I had everything, my own jet plane, helicopter, houses, and travel; I had 300 guys in my crew who answered to me. I had all the trappings of that. The low – I become a major target of the US government, fighting the law. I was charged five times and went to trial five times – I did eight years in prison and had to pay $15 million in fines. I had to pay a Restitution of $5 million and forfeit my assets. I was constantly fighting the law.” When talking about his work with the Russian Mafia Michael said they were just becoming a factor in the US in his hay day. He organized for them to be involved in the gasoline business – they were partners with him. He says they are very sophisticated and intelligent – they are the ones to now be concerned with. A lot of black market goes on in Russia. Regarding the Mafia in general,
Michael told me, “However, you always know danger is around you – you are told certain rules and policies and if you violated them you could pay with your life. There is a lot of jealousy and treachery – some of the old timers didn’t appreciate what I was trying to do. You may walk into a trap; you had to be conscious of this all the time. I always knew I couldn’t let my guard down. “The night I took my oath, in October 31 1975 for the Mafia, there were six of us who took this and I’m the only one alive today, the others were murdered,” Michael points out. “I’m so blessed and protected. I’m trying to be faithful to God.” I asked Michael how he actually got away from the Mob. “I had a plan and this was to marry the young Christian girl who had been put in my life,” he said. “I had been successful against government indictments, so I wanted to take a guilty plea on a racketeer motion - I received a 10 year sentence and a fine www.mychristiandaily.com.au | 11
Former mafia captain now works for a new boss. Referred to by the media as, ‘The Prince of the Mafia’ and ‘The Yuppie Don’, Michael in his day whilst being involved in the Mafia was generating $6-8 million a week masterminding legal and illegal activities. Michael Franzese’s rise in the Colombo family came from the infamous gasoline bootlegging rackets, which were very lucrative for the family. Working with the Russian Mafia, Franzese sold millions of gallons of gas. He is now the founder and chairman of the Breaking Out Foundation. Breaking Out is dedicated to educating, empowering, and equipping youth to face life’s challenges, especially gambling addiction.
then I married Camille. I had not come to Christ at this time I was on the edge. I actually met Christ while I was in prison. It was real for me – I did five years in jail and came home for 13 months – then I violated my terms and went back for four years and 29 months and I spent seven days in a 6 x 6 cell every day. During that time I read my Bible a 1000 times and made so many notes. My wife sent me over 400 books. I read books on every religion – I wanted to make sure - I read books on everything. I read them all and came to the conclusion Christianity was the real deal – I did so much study and research. It became real to me. Jesus first appealed to my intellect then to my heart.” When Michael came home from prison he didn’t know what to do, as people knew about him and his activities. The government wanted him to be a witness but he denied this. People were looking for him so they had to move around then God led him to share his story. “People feel you can’t walk away from the Mafia but this is powerful evidence that God is at work in my life,” Michael said. “I try to encourage others that any sin is forgivable. God’s grace extends to all of us. The message is resonated very powerfully. People struggle more and more in the US, it is changing for the worst; people are moving away from God; they are struggling. My testimony is resonating with many around the world.” So, was there any danger for Michael from the Mafia after he left? “I have always had God’s protection,” he said. I asked him if members of the Mob were trying to get to him. He replied, “Not actively but I can’t go back to Brooklyn in New York because there is a contract still on my life. One of the main things is I never put any one away but people are still upset with me. The boss
of my family was upset and he put the contract on my life – but now he’s in prison, if he was out he would not leave me alone.” In 1986, Fortune Magazine listed Michael as number 18 on its list of the ‘Fifty Most Wealthy and Powerful Mafia Bosses’. According to a Federal report, Michael made more money for a crime family than anyone since Chicago Outfit boss Al Capone. So how has Michael’s life changed now having met Christ - what is the difference now? “I say this - when you come to the Lord you don’t forget all the former years. Draw closer to God and he will draw near to you. God allows me to resist temptation – he transformed my heart and my mind, I am a new creation. It’s important to surround myself with good people who love the Lord and to be nourished. I have become friends of many of the pastors in the US and my wife keeps me on the ‘straight and narrow’. We need to be in fellowship. I still have many struggles. My father is still in prison. My brother is in the witness protection program – he tried to hurt me but God has given me a peace of mind. I am in ministry now, however I didn’t intend to go into ministry, but now God has honoured that.” Michael spends a great deal of time ministering to youth and counseling juvenile delinquents and trying to educate them to tell them a life of crime is a dead end street. He wants to lead the youth to the Lord by example. “They really listen to me as I have credibility – I survived,” he said. “I believe missionary work is important. We are responsible for the world young people live in. There is only one way – through Christ. He equips us in everything.” Lynn Goldsmith Editor
In 1986, Fortune Magazine listed Michael as number 18 on its list of the ‘Fifty Most Wealthy and Powerful Mafia Bosses’. According to a Federal report, Michael made more money for a crime family than anyone since Chicago Outfit boss Al Capone. 12 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
– God’s Way
www.mychristiandaily.com.au | 13
Upon practising meditation all the anger went, which changed our family life – there
met with Leah Bulfin and we chatted over coffee, about the art of meditation. I’m talking about meditating on God and His Word. Leah talks to churches and groups about bringing back this age old tradition of what really is ‘practicing the presence of God’. I must admit I have meditated only spasmodically, but since talking to Leah I am doing this everyday and it is bringing me closer to God and more centred on Him. I asked her some questions about how and why she began to practice meditation. What made you look at meditation? We had been through a season in our life that had been quite difficult – building a
new house and having a new baby. Our business, which is in property development, suffered through the GFC, so we were going through very difficult times. My husband was studying and I was running a kids’ church – I was totally exhausted. I was longing for peace and was dealing with many issues. I desperately needed more of God and His peace. I was very stressed, exhausted and tired and longing for God. As I was doing kids’ church I was not able to be in church myself and was missing the spiritual input. In my spirit I was longing for God more deeply. Over a couple of months I began to wake in the night with a sense that God was calling me to come closer to Him I
didn’t respond immediately, but I had an awareness of His presence. I was reading a book about a woman who was going to India for three months to an Ashram, but I knew this wouldn’t lead to Jesus. I thought how wonderful it would be to have three months to sit with God and meditate on Him. I couldn’t go away for three months but I realized that I could meditate on God - there was nothing to stop me having the same encounter. People all over the world are trying to find Him. The next morning I shut myself in the walk-in-wardrobe with God. I just sat there, closed my eyes and invited the Holy Spirit to come. I shut off my mind and sat
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was peace and joy and happiness and life just began to work out and fall into place.
in the stillness and sat there without any stress. I felt His presence come in such an incredibly real way. I began to do this every day. The journey and the transformation have totally amazed me – where it’s led me with God. What has the transformation been? What changes have you noticed? So many things – inward and outward transformation! The peace was the first and biggest change that I noticed. Instead of waking up in the morning with a sense of dread and a churning stomach, I had peace and a sense that there was nothing to worry about – it was wonderful to feel that constant sense of peace. I learnt the ability to let things go. Three years later I have learnt to let everything go – it just comes naturally. It is the peace that passes all understanding. I am very calm and relaxed. I have been transformed to be able to let things go. I used to get very angry because I was so stressed. Upon practising meditation all the anger went, which changed our family life – there was peace and joy and happiness and life just began to work out and fall into place. Hopes and dreams, which I had stored in my heart, began opening up for me. God just found ways to open doors, which had been shut for a long time. Even strategies for our business and the confidence and the plans to make those things real began to unfold. When we go looking for dreams to unfold it can lead to frustration. When we just focus on God and how amazing He is and His love is – it supernaturally releases all other things. When we put God first (Matthew. 6:33) and seek Him – He takes care of everything else. There is something supernaturally powerful about being totally consumed by Him – it releases things in such a way that you could not have figured it out better for yourself.
What are the steps needed to start meditating? Find a quiet place where you are not going to be disturbed. Jesus said to go into your room and shut the door. Set aside some time and be fully engaged. I take my journal my Bible and a pen. I use my phone for Scriptures I may need to find. I go prepared to hear from God and journal everything. I have a cushion and I sit on the floor, but relax just wherever it suits you. The power is in meeting with God. Make yourself comfortable. I don’t use music because it can distract. So, I do have some strategies. Once I am comfortable I close my eyes and sit up straight, I take a few slow, deep breaths to relax and to help me forget everything else and begin to focus on God. I begin by stilling my mind. I make a point of stopping all the thoughts running around my head causing stress and worry. I remind myself that in the next 20 minutes (or longer) I don’t need to think about anything. This is my time with God and everything else can wait. This can take a little bit of practice but don’t give up because the peace that comes from spending time with God is worth it. Some days are harder than others, particularly if you are tired. If your mind wanders, just bring it back to centre on God. Let your thoughts go and come back to the awareness of God. Sometimes I quote a passage of Scripture a few times as a way to stop all the other thoughts and to help calm my spirit and focus myself on God’s presence. After this I will spend a few minutes (or however long it takes) to ‘let go’. This is where I consciously choose to let go of everything that is worrying me and causing me stress and anxiety. I give it to God. I also make sure I forgive and let go of any hurt or offenses. When I reach the point where my mind is still and I have let go of everything that has been worrying me I find that my heart – or spirit – becomes open and very aware of the presence of the Holy Spirit.
He is always with us but it is in this beautiful stillness that we become most aware of Him. And it’s in this stillness that God pours out His peace and ministers to our heart. As you become aware of His presence, you realize you have connected with Him and He is right there with you. You will find that the more you practice being still and letting go of everything else and just focusing your heart and spirit on God, you will be drawn deeper and deeper into Him. This is an amazing life changing experience and there is no limit to His depth. Every day is a different experience with God. Sometimes God drops a few words into my spirit – it doesn’t come from me. I look up my Bible and I am amazed because it is what I needed that day. Those moments only come in the stillness. We need God to restore and refresh us and it only comes in the stillness. It is only there that He reveals more of Himself and we begin to get a greater picture of who He is – His love and grace. There is so much more I have learnt on the journey. One of the revelations I have received through meditation is that God lives in me and because of that, whatever I need is already in me. Whatever it is that I need; peace, joy, patience, strength, creativity or anything else it may be - is already in me and meditation is just tapping into the source of everything I need. Lynn Goldsmith Editor
www.mychristiandaily.com.au | 15
DATO Chua Jui Meng was Malaysiaâ€™s longest serving Minister of Health, holding that position from 1990 to 2004. Chua is a lawyer called to the British Bar as a Barrister-at-law at the Inner Temple before entering politics through his involvement with the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA).
16 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
MALAYSIA HAS A TOUCH FROM GOD I had the privilege of meeting with DATO Chua Jui Meng in Kuala Lumpur, who was the former Health Minister of Malaysia, to hear his story…and what a story it is! I will let you into his life at the time of meeting with Christ and his life BC. He is one inspiring man of God who doesn’t hold back his rhetoric on describing how his life has changed.
hua Jui Meng is a man on a mission for his God and he has such a great love for Him. His exuberance bubbles over as he relates his life to me. I admit I was mesmerized. He has come a long way from his political days and has encountered so much, which ultimately led him to finding Christ. So, his story begins…his step into Christianity started at the age of 13 when he began attending church in the 1950s. It was a rather conservative church, and missionaries from Australia and New Zealand happened to be speaking and they told him about Christ. He finally acknowledged Christ and followed Him until he started working, then sadly he began to fall away. “Gradually I began to disconnect with the Lord,” Chua explained. “For some 40 years I lost touch until 2004.” Eleven years ago an amazing experience overtook Chua. The catalyst was actually the Lord himself ! Before that occurrence his sons had found God, he says this was definitely without the influence of his wife and himself. Chua had moved away from his relationship with God and his wife was a strong unbeliever! “My wife and I were very much resistant to the gospel,” Chua said. “However in Melbourne in 2000 my wife was the first to have an encounter
with the Lord Jesus. We went to an Asian church where my son, who was a believer, was attending while he was studying and working in Australia. At that point when we went reluctantly to church with him, we sat right at the back – we certainly did not want to sit too close to the pulpit. On that day there was a lady pastor from Malaysia. At the end of the service she beckoned me to come forward – I didn’t know her, but she recognized me as I was still the Minister of Health.” Chua and his wife went reluctantly to the front and she wanted to pray for them. “I said, ‘yes, why not.’ Then she touched my wife and as soon as she did so my wife fell to the floor. She laid there for 20 minutes. She prayed for me but I stayed as cold and solid as a rock. Lying on the floor, tears rolling down my wife’s face, she felt a stream of cool water flowing down from her head and into her body, as the Lord Jesus spoke into her life telling her, “let it go, let it go…” She was immediately transformed, praying and reading the Scriptures from that day till now. She was baptised shortly after. However, Chua remained resistant. He told his children not to talk to him about God and said, “You guys should learn to enjoy yourselves.” He was at that time, trying to dissuade them. Then in 2004 difficult times came upon Chua for him politically and in fact his life in general. “In the year 1999 I felt unwell and went to the National Heart Institute,” Chua said. “I suffered from insomnia and oppression on the head and back. They checked me and said everything was fine, there was nothing wrong. A year later I went again. The same cardiologist did a
series of tests on me. At the end of it, she was not as cheerful as the year before. She said to me, ’You have four arteries that are badly blocked. The aorta has been blocked severely where it meets the heart and stenting is out of the question. I said that this is impossible, that one year before you said everything was great. The doctor explained to me that they needed to do the surgery immediately, as she couldn’t guarantee I would not drop dead anytime.” Chua had the operation, in fact, he had two on the same day. “After the first operation, a bypass, I had to be pushed back into the operating theatre, as my heart had started bleeding internally. I believe now the devil wanted to take my life that day.” The insomnia and oppression in his body continued. Then major events began to unfold. “In 2013 I was at church then one doctor gave a sermon of how the Lord healed him of his cancer and he became a Pastor,” Chua said. “When he spoke that day I was touched. When the altar call was made I went up to receive Christ.” The president of the Full Gospel Businessmen of Malaysia was a doctor and he moved in the miraculous. “He told me one day in church that he wanted to cleanse my house. He and three others from the church came and proceeded to do this. I had accumulated many things that were occultic – talismans, charms and idols. All were removed and destroyed. That cleansing cleared the way for the Lord Jesus to act.” In 2014 in February Chua had taken two sleeping pills. He explained, “I was www.mychristiandaily.com.au | 17
“I have been in Malaysia and to Nigeria, India, Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar, Tokyo & Singapore where I’ve seen the OMNIPOTENCE, OPMNISCIENCE & OMNIPRESENCE OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST in dynamic action with thousands of healings, deliverances, amazing miracles. Multitudes in those countries received Christ as their Lord and Saviour. The last 11 years were truly Days of Wonder.
sitting on the floor cross legged, reading my cabinet papers. My son, Damien, came back home – he saw me reading and of course, thought this was what I was doing. He waited for me to acknowledge him but I was not even aware of his presence. He shook me and said, ‘Dad wake up.’ My head lifted up and he was shocked to see my eyes were both rolled up, all white. Evil was on my face. I said, ‘Zalim, Zalim’ – which is Arabic for cruel. I began to shake all over. He thought I had a stroke and he called his mother, his brother and his own wife. They lifted me onto the bed. As soon as I touched the bed, I called in Greek, ‘Beezelbub’ which is Satan. My eyes were still all rolled up and there was the look of evil
18 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
on my face, I began to hiss. My son yelled out, ‘We want to pray for you dad.’ The demons began to speak to my family, that conversation with the demons lasted for five hours.” At one time, Damien commanded in the name of Jesus, “What is your name?” He replied, “I am Legion for we are many,” exactly as in the Gospel of Mark, Chapter 5. Chua was eventually delivered from the evil forces and it had a profound effect on him. He was healed of his insomnia and oppression. “I knew that’s why my arteries went from good to severely blocked in one year. As the Lord Jesus said, ‘The Devil comes to steal, to kill and to destroy. I come to give you life and life more abundantly.’ Chua and his family personally
experienced some 25 miracles over the last 11 years. Amazing days of wonder, of healings of eczema, hyperthyroidism, heart diseases, depression, major deliverances from demonization, of gout and of an Angel who rescued Damien from kidnappers who had threatened him with death. Above all of eternal salvation for the entire family.
Lynn Goldsmith Editor
www.mychristiandaily.com.au | 19
ISRAEL and the Re-think on what God is doing ISRAEL – A TOPIC TO BE CONSIDERED, PARTICULARLY IN THESE PERILOUS TIMES. JIM DOUGLASS, BIBLE SCHOLAR AND LECTURER, WRITES ABOUT WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THE HOLY LAND TODAY AND WHAT IT MEANS TO GOD’S PEOPLE. 20 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
srael (as the land, the nation, the history and the purpose) is also God’s focus on what He is doing in history. The story of redemption begins with the call of Abraham and God’s promise to Abraham of descendants and a land. God establishes the historical base of the Fathers including, Isaac, Jacob and his 12 sons. After his all-night struggle with the Angel of God, Jacob is blessed by being renamed ‘Israel’. ‘Israel’ means ‘he contends with God’ and as a term
has had a variety of uses. At first it was the new name for Jacob; then it became the name of his descendants ‘the sons of Israel’ and of the Hebrew nation. It then was used of the ten northern tribes after the revolt of Jeroboam. It was then used of the southern tribes (Judah and Benjamin) when the northern tribes disappeared under the Assyrians. It was then used for the modern state of Israel and finally (as I will argue) Israel is the olive tree through which God releases
“This is God’s consummation of human and earthly history: we are now in the End-Times. Our times are being soaked with eschatological significance (and fire) if the blandishments of our religion do not blind us to what God is doing.” His covenant promises (which He made to Israel) to the whole world by faith in Messiah. The formation of modern Israel was an immediate event, a nation formed in a day, 15 May 1948 (Isaiah 66:8). This sets in motion a sequence of Biblical events. This is God’s consummation of human and earthly history: we are now in the End-Times. Our times are being soaked with eschatological significance (and fire) if the blandishments of our religion do not blind us to what God is doing. Christianity and Judaism are two systems of religion both derived from revelation given through Israel. Religion is man-made; revelation is God-made. A religion (faithful to its revelation base) is a man-devised way of preserving the revelation by its liturgies, architectures, language, theologies and song. This is a culture and it is fine if it keeps the believer in the fold. But religions develop their own human momentum, hierarchies and investments, which become inertial when the revelation moves on. God is moving in history to confirm His Word. Judaism is based on the truth of the application of the Law and on the desire for a Messiah. Christianity is based on the truth of the Gospel and on the naming of the Messiah (Jesus of Nazareth). Unfortunately, Christianity as the dominant culture has grievously mishandled and misread the significance of the Jews. The Church has arrogated to itself the promises made to Israel and despised the Jews in the process. Of this we must repent. Jews and Christians worship the same God based on the same Biblical origins. The revelation is moving on in the
sense that history is dragging us out of our religious torpor. Religions can remain static with the intention of preserving their spiritual deposit. This in itself is not wrong but it can suffer from increasing irrelevance and loss of human appetite for it. People will just walk away. Israel (as I am using the term) invokes the prophetic. We have to be prepared to move with the divine action as it is focussed through history in Israel. The Jews (the ‘sons of Israel’) are the chosen people of God whether they like it or not. God’s covenant with Israel will stand whether Israel has been faithful or not. God reveals Himself in the history of His dealings with Israel and by the truth of His Messiah. Israel (as holding the covenant promises of God) is intended to be light to the nations (Isaiah 49:6). Based upon the promises to Abraham (the father of faith Romans 4:11), Israel is the olive tree (Romans 11:17) from which some Jews have been removed because of unbelief. But those who believe are re-grafted in by believing (Romans 11:23). Christians (gentiles – a wild olive tree) are grafted in by believing and become partakers of the root and fatness of the olive tree. Some Christians believe that the church has taken over from Israel. Israel has failed, rejected their Messiah and the church redeems the situation for revelation and faith. The church (as the Body of Christ) is the witness to Messiah to the nations. Jesus wept over Jerusalem for she knew not the time of her visitation (Luke 19:41-44). But the promises are made to Israel not to the church (Romans 9:4). They are only made available to us through the Jewish Messiah who is God’s
promise to Israel (Luke 2:25-32). The Jews may have rejected their Messiah (as prophesised, see Isaiah 53) but the intention of God is to redeem Israel (Romans 11:26). The point about this is not that Christians become Jews: that is just swapping one religion for another. Believers are not grafted into Judaism; they are grafted into Israel, which is the vehicle of God’s revelation and purpose in history. God, by events, is awakening both Jew and Christian to what He is about to do through Israel according to His Holy Scriptures. So we have the theory of salvation meeting the events of history. God is getting our attention. There are always different interpretations of events and what is supposed to be happening. To say God works in history always has rival interpretations but the guarantee is the fulfilment of prophecy. God tells His prophets what He is doing (Amos 3:7). The decline of religion in the West is matched by the activation of prophetic events (that is, events with God significance). This is unchurching the believer to release the prophet. In my opinion, the student of the Bible sees apocalyptic energies at work in the heightened hostilities in the Middle East. We are being made to look at Jerusalem whether we want to or not. Israel (the land) is morphing into Israel, the visible purpose of God.
Jim Douglass www.arrowchristianlearning.com
God’s covenant with Israel will stand whether Israel has been faithful or not. God reveals Himself in the history of His dealings with Israel and by the truth of His Messiah. www.mychristiandaily.com.au | 21
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22 | The Christian Pulse, September 2015
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