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Think! 22 Questions In Genesis That Will Make You think By Homer Slack
Eden - Paradise Lost A Perfect Beginning Spoilt by Sin
The First Murder A tale of two brothers
A New Start 12 A bridegroom with his bride thinks to himself, “This is a new path I have never travelled before.” World In View 14 • There’s wood in my food? • Fake Rice! • Tissue from aborted babies to manufacture flavor additives in processed foods! A New Life of Discipline 16 How do we live this life of discipline in a modern stressed-out world? TESTIMONY 18
Did You Know? God Created the World in 7 Days
The Story Teller Seed of the Serpent
Jargon Buster Understanding Religious Terminologies
Ode To The Creator By Angela Slack
Note To Self By Angela Slack
In Praise Of Hymn 31 Reviewing Great Christian Hymns: – All Things Bright and Beautiful
I began to feel very angry that I had been lied to for all of my life The Almond Tree 20 As sure as the almond tree signals Spring, so God will keep His promises
WORLD IN VIEW
Back From The Fall 25 God made a way for a new beginning and we can run to Him instead of hiding
25 January - March 2016
Volume 4 - Issue 1
EDITORIAL T This issue is entitled, Genesis: Origins and New Beginnings
It is very fitting as we welcome a new year 2016, we look forward with anticipation and some amount of apprehension as well as we garner our strength and motivation to get into the throes of projects, plans and resolutions for this new year. The long, cold, grey, gloomy, Winter will soon be behind us and so as we prepare for the new thrust of Spring we at SHARE Magazine pray that you will also experience either a New birth to Life or a Renewal of your faith, during this time of transition. The long frost anaesthetized both flora and fauna alike and sent animals into hibernation and sloth bringing them to an almost stand still, a near death, a dormancy. Then the brilliant rays of Spring sunshine, melts away the snow, creating torrents of well needed rain, chasing away overcast clouds with their warmth. This sun in Spring, causes the bulbs buried beneath the soil to germinate and burrow upwards to the life giving light; absorbing its energy to sprout and blossom, transforming the barren landscape into a cornucopia of
aesthetic delight and aromatic joy. Nature begins to display her bounty and beauty a new cycle of life has begun from the death of Winter new life has sprung. Let’s take our lessons from Nature! Similarly, when we encounter Jesus Christ He, the Life Giving God, transforms us into new creations. 2 Cor 5:17 “...anyone who is joined to Christ is a new being; the old is gone, the new has come. (GNT) In this issue, we go back to the book of Genesis to plot mankind’s journey in relation to God as his creator. There are many life lessons to be learnt and many applications to study if we are to escape the pitfalls of our predecessors. Everyday is a school and so let’s learn together as we go back to basics. Let’s throw off death forming habits and swing into new Life in Christ. Editorial Corrections In the last issue (October 2015) I said in my editorial that the Berean saints were mentioned in the Old Testament. I am sorry, I meant the sons of Issachar (see 1 Chronicles 12:32). The saints from Berea were spoken of in Acts 17. I remain in Jesus’ Service. Love as always
Editor and Cofounder
CREDITS FOR IMAGES ON PAGE 29 l Image of insect and parrots by Bill Gracey - www.flickr.com/photos/9422878@N08/ - License: creativecommons.org/licenses/ by-nc-nd/2.0/ l Image of Icecapped mountains by Tim Shields - www.flickr.com/photos/glaciertim/ - License: creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/ l Image of horses by freebigpictures.com/
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SHARE MAGAZINE is a FREE Christian quarterly that deals with challenging Christian topics that have been mostly ignored or left unanswered. The magazine includes written articles, poems and thoughts etc. Read our online version at www.TheShareMagazine.com where you can discuss articles or order a printed version. If you would like to submit articles, join our writers group, or to get involved in any other way kindly email us. SHARE MAGAZINE is produced by Select Arrow, which is the publishing arm of United In Christ.
Throughout this magazine the editor & contributors seek to present a balanced and accurate view of Scripture’s teaching. We are all on a journey of studying and understanding God’s Word. Because of this, all we can offer is as balanced an understanding as the Holy Spirit has offered us at this time. The views or opinions represented in this publication are personal to each of our contributors and may not fully represent those of any other contributor or editor. Scriptures quoted are from the Contemporary English Version (CEV) unless otherwise stated.
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We are grateful for your Magazine and believe you are doing a great job. Thanks. I noted however that in your July to September Issue, in the ‘Did You Know’ section entitled ‘The Minority Report’, the writer seems to be suggesting that a person can be ‘Saved and then Lost’. Is this what he believes, that we can be saved and then later lose our salvation? - Thanks B.F.
Hi B.F., thanks for your clear and honest enquiry. The topic of ‘once saved always saved’ or ‘saved and lost’ is a very controversial one today. The former is called Calvinism and the
later Arminianism and both extremes staunchly opposes each other.
Let me therefore hurry to say I believe both are correct mainly because the Bible teaches both. I believe that those who are saved are eternally saved but only God knows the heart so only God knows who they are. Since it is not my place to say which individuals are saved or lost I must treat everyone, Christian or otherwise, as if they are lost or can be lost, myself included. I must therefore warn the ‘Christian’ who is presumptuously living in sin… “...that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” I would be amiss to think and teach that the fact that I said the sinner’s prayer
years ago means that I no longer need the provision of the blood of Jesus when I sin because I am eternally saved and cannot be lost. My position is based on 2 Timothy 2:19. “Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.” This verse states that “...God knows those who are His…” not us. Since we do not know for sure let those of us who believe we are, not get overconfident and snobbish but rather demonstrate our claim through a lifestyle of humility and obedience, let us “...depart from iniquity.” - Thanks Homer Slack Text your email address to: ++447533741439
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January - March 2016
God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being. And the Lord God planted a garden toward the east in Eden, and there He place the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground the Lord God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Genesis 2:7-9 Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you shall surely die.” then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone, I will make him a helper suitable for him.” Genesis 2:15-18 The Lord God took from him a rib. With that rib, He formed me, and I awoke into the wonderful presence of my Creator. Both God and the man looked at me, and said, “I was good, and they were well pleased with me.” The man called himself Adam and named me, Eve. God said I was to be his helpmate. Together we were to rule this paradise as one. I walked in a beautiful garden full of plants and animals. Adam told me the names of everything. There were so many names to learn for there was every type of plant and animal one could image. There was a creature; he called bird, flying overhead and singing beautiful songs. A small winged creature he called a bee, buzzed as it went from one brightly colored flower to another. A green skinned long legged creature, he called a frog, stuck out a long red tongue and grabbed a fly and then hopped off a water lily. In the distance, eating leave from a tall tree stood a funny looking yellow and brown spotted
EDEN - PA creature, called a giraffe, with a neck as long as I am tall. Then there was a giant gray creature, he calls an elephant. It had big ears, a long nose as long as my arm, legs as big a as a tree, and a little tail. Everywhere I looked was something new to see and learn. Everything was so beautiful, and peaceful. The ground was plaved with gorgeous stones of gold, onyx, and gems pleasing to the eye. All the plants supplied us with plenty of food to eat. Adam and I went from one tree to the next picking fruit and tasting it to see if it was sweet, tart, bitter, firm, or juicy. Each time one of us found a new taste we would bring it to the other to share, and so that they also might taste. I loved to spend time with Adam
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and go on long walks. It was easy to take care of everything. We had only to speak, and it would grow at our command.
In the cool of the evening God would walk with us and talk with us about our day. We talked about how lovely the butterflies’ dance was, how silly and happy the lion’s and the lamb’s game of tag had been. We shared what the otter told us about her day of swimming and splashing around in the stream had been like. He would tell us about the stars above, what the angels were doing, and how much He loved us. We would tell Him, how much we loved Him, thanked Him for all that, He had given us. We could not wait to see each other and look forward
to eat. I was not really even hungry, and there were plenty of things to eat along the path if I had been. Why did it fascinate me so much? I laid there for a long time, looking up at that tree and wondering. What was so special about it? It was the only thing God had forbidden us to eat.” Adam had said, “It was to show God that we loved Him enough, to trust Him and obey Him.
ARADISE to the next time that He would come to walk among us. It was the perfect place to raise a family, a true paradise. I did not yet realize just how happy and blessed we were to live this way. The day that forever changed my life started like so many other days had started before. Adam and I awoke, and ate breakfast together. We went walking hand in hand along the path looking for yellow and red tulips, picking blackberries, watching the squirrels run up and down the tree gathering nuts. We had stopped in a meadow, and I was listening to the song of praise the birds were singing. The lion roared
calling for us to come and see her newborn cubs. Adam went to see the cubs, but I was caught up in the music, and I followed the chickadee until her song finial stopped. I sat down under the shade of a tree to rest until Adam returned and hoped to catch another song. I looked up and realized I was sitting under the tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. It was a beautiful tree. It was full of fruit that looked delicious and pleasing. I was wondering, “What would it taste like?” The thought of it made my mouth water, and I desired to take just one bite and see. I know that God had told Adam, “That we must not eat from it, for in that day we would surely die.” Adam had warned me, and I knew better than
A serpent came by and coiled up on a limb just above my head. He was a beautiful creature. The other animals said, “He was to be one of the wisest animals in the garden.” The serpent told me to take a bite and that it was delightful. I told him that I could not. He asked, “If God had really said, ‘You may not eat from any tree in the garden.’” as if God did not have the right to say, “This is mine alone.” I thought for a minute that he was right, “I should be able to eat this, if I wanted.” I dismissed the thought. God made it. It was His to do with as He pleased. I wondered, “Did God have a good reason for doing so?” I told the serpent, “We may eat of all the trees of the garden, but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden from it, we may not eat; not touch it for if we do, we will die.” I wondered: “What it meant to die? Was it like the daylilies, where their blooms die at the end of the day, only to open anew the next? Did it hurt? Did it last long?” The serpent then said, “You surely shall not die! God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like Godknowing good and evil.” I had never thought about being like God. He can do everything. I would like that kind of power. Maybe if I ate the fruit, then I would truly be like Him- knowing everything, seeing everything, being everywhere at once. Was that why the serpent was so wise? If I knew good and evil, maybe then I would know better how to please God and Adam. This continued on page 10... January - March 2016
THE FIRST MURDER a tale of two brothers
The story of Cain and Abel, the offsprings of the first two human beings created by God, is told in Genesis chapter 4, and from as early as this, God tries to teach us a lesson that should never be forgotten throughout all ages. The story is well known. The brothers both gave their offerings to God but while Abel’s was accepted Cain’s was rejected. Abel’s offering was a sacrifice but Cain’s was not and I believe this has great significance. I remember king David, the man after God’s own heart, once saying that he would not give anything to God that did not cost him. Abel “...killed the firstborn lamb from one of his sheep and gave the Lord the best parts of it.” To kill one of your loved animals and prepare it is much more of a sacrifice than picking a
few fruits or uprooting some vegetables. Cain did not take the rejection very well and was very angry. God did not condemn Cain but counselled him as a loving father would. God told him he needed to do what was right, which is an indication that what he did was obviously wrong. God continued to council him and told him that if he did what was right he would be accepted but if he did not, he would have sin issues to battle with and if he left his sin unrepented it would overpower him. You know how the story continued and how Abel’s life ended prematurely at the hands of his vengeful brother. Cain did not take God’s advice and ended up murdering his brother Abel. Sin
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entered the world through his parents and now things have gone from bad to worse. We saw where Adam and Eve’s
So they suddenly saw the need to do something they never did before. They started to cover themselves with fig leaves to hide their nakedness. A person being conscious of their nakedness before a stranger is understandable but to be conscious of one’s nakedness before their married partner is a sign that something is seriously wrong. Sin also caused them to hide from God and another shocking effect is Adam’s effort to blame God and Eve. Eve tried to blame the serpent. Sin caused havoc in their lives and now the devastating news of their murdered son compounded it.
relationship became estranged after they sinned. Mistrust soon divided them and that resulted in an unwillingness to be naked and transparent before each other.
The thing to note here is that Abel was not killed by a stranger, a thief or a drug addict etc. Abel was murdered by his own brother. Two blood brothers who grew up playing together in the same house and having the same parents, yet one was a worshiper the other a murderer, one of God the other of the devil. This story was the foreshadowing of something much more epic that was to happen many years later. Scripture records this about Jesus, “He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him.” In fact, those He came to, His own Jewish brethren, plotted and killed Him. Jesus was betrayed with a kiss by someone He had close fellowship with, someone who ate and dipped with Him in the same cup. David prophesying about Jesus’ betrayal said this, “If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were rising against me, I could hide. But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend, with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship at the house of God, as we walked about
among the worshipers.” Psalm 55:12-14 (NIV) Paul made a noteworthy statement when he said, “...they are not all Israel who are of Israel.” Romans 9:6 (NKJV) Among the children of Jacob (Israel) are those who are God’s truly called out people as well as murderous children of the devil. The same natural father Abraham but two very different spiritual fathers. A similar point is made a few more times to help us get the message. Abraham had two sons, one the product of human scheming and wisdom the other the result of God’s promise and power. Abraham and Sarah tried to achieve God’s promise through human effort. They aimed for Isaac but got an Ishmael instead. A child that would bring trouble. Jacob also had two sons Esau and Jacob. God loved Jacob but hated Esau. This pattern of two sons will be repeated in the end times. Jesus speaking of these times said this, “You will be arrested, punished, and even killed. Because of me, you will be hated by people of all nations. Many [brethren of the faith] will give up and will betray and hate each other.” Under pressure the true spiritual nature of ‘God’s people’ will be revealed and those who are not of God will hate and betray (in some cases unto death) those who are. Let’s check our hearts today, Jesus says anger against a brother is no different from murder. Are you angry with another brother or sister in the faith? Leave your gift at the altar and go and make peace with them for God’s requirement is a truthful and obedient heart rather than rituals. p By Homer Slack author, preacher, Bible teacher, IT tutor, programmer & graphic designer
January - March 2016
EDEN - PARADISE ...continued from page 7
would be a good thing, would it not? How could knowing something cause me harm? Why did I not have the right to make up my own mind?” The serpent wrapped his tail around a piece of fruit hanging just above my head and offered it to me. He said, “See. Touch it. It will not hurt you any more than it will me.” Seeing that it did not harm him, I reached out and took it in my hand. Turning it over and over, in my hand I studied it. Again, the serpent spoke, “Just as I said, no harm has come to you. God just does not want to share His power with you, that is why He told you not to taste.” Take just one small bite. One bite could not hurt, and you will see. Do this if not for you, to please me that I might know that you are my friend.” Therefore, I took a bite. He said, “See I told you. You are as wise as God or me. We are equals.” I could not feel any change, so I thought it was all right. I was not any wiser, but I did not want him to know. The fruit was good to my taste and pleasing for a while, so I took and gave my husband. I wanted him to be as pleased with me as the serpent. He resisted at first, but I pleaded with him to join me. Wanting to please me, and wanting to be like God, he also took a bite. When Adam took that bite, everything changed, and we saw ourselves as we truly were. We knew good and evil. Before we had known only Good. Now we knew pain, heartache, emptiness, and fear. The serpent had lied. This did hurt. Maybe not at first but now I was aware of what sin felt like. It was a black hole, sucking life from my body leaving me broken, hopeless in a deep lightless pit. No matter how I tried, I could not wash this film of evil from my skin or my mind. I could not free myself from its hold on my life. I was aware of how much damage I had done but it was too 10
late to take it back.
Before, when Adam and I looked at each other, it was in love and beautiful. Now, I felt dirty, and vulnerable. We tried to cover our bodies with fig leaves. We did not want the other to behold our shame. Would Adam ever trust me again? I had betrayed him and nagged him into betraying God too. We felt the breeze blowing across the garden, and we knew- that God was coming. For the first time, we felt apart from the Lord God. I was afraid of what He would think and do. Why did I listen to the serpent? God had never done anything that had hurt me, or caused me pain. I had known only joy, and pleasure in His presences. I had failed, disappointed, and disobeyed Him. How could He ever forgive me? I feared that He would no longer love me. Adam and I hid as best we could but how do you hide from God? God called to us, and asked, “Where are you?” Already knowing where we were and what we had done. He still wanted to spend time with His creation. Why else would He have come looking for us? He asked. “What we had done?” Adam pointed at me, and said, “She made me do it.” Then he blamed God for his sin, for God had given me to him. I blamed the serpent for he had tricked me. The truth was we were both at fault, and we both knew it. We could not fix the problem, so we did not own the sin as our own but tried to pass the blame. God first cursed the serpent, causing him to crawl on his belly, and eat the dust of the earth continually, for his part in the sin. He cursed me so that now, when I give birth, I must endure pain. He cursed the earth, that it would not be bountiful with food and life, but would instead,
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be full of thorns and thistles. Adam was cursed so that only with hard labor and sweat could he provide for us. He kept His promise that we would die. We could already feel our bodies growing old and tired. Disease, sickness, and injury entered the world. God cursed the animals, and for the first time they knew death, because of man. No longer would they speak with us, but ran in fear from us instead. He shed their blood to make a covering for Adam and me, before sending an angel to drive us out of paradise. He placed another to guard the Tree of Life; in order that we might not eat of it . We lost everything that day, gaining nothing, which we thought we would. Adam and I fought that day for the first time. Adam did not trust me as he had before, because I had not listened to him. I had not honored his authority or God’s. I am not sure he will ever fully listen to me again. Adam often shakes his head, but does not hear what I say. I had blamed him for not keeping the serpent away, and not being a better teacher. We were both bitter with each other, and we were never quite the same again. I think the only reason that we slept together that night was from fear. We could not understand the animal’s voices, and they seemed mad at us. We woke the next day, and I had to hunt long and hard for food. We found enough to make our stomach stop growling, but now knew what it meant to be hungry. Evening finally came, and the blazing sun started down. We were so very lonely. A part of us was missing, because God no longer walked among us. We did not know the peace and rest; we had when He was there. We understood now what worry and trouble were. We cried ourselves
to sleep, sorry for all, which we had done, for our eyes were truly open as we could see things as God had. We had failed to worship Him, as the true and only God. God is such a loving God, looking back, I wonder, what He would have done if we had admitted our sin, and simply fallen at His knees and begged forgiveness. Still He did not leave us in our helpless state but gave us the promise of a Savior, His son, who would redeem us and restore our right standing with Him. A few thousand years have passed, but not too much has changed. Just as Solomon said, “There is nothing new under the sun.” We all have a choice to sin or not. We all fail. It still has a price of death. It all starts with the same problems, the eyes and I. We look at something until we say it is good, and we have to have it. It may be the second piece of cake, the neighbor’s house, sex outside of marriage, pictures of abused kids, or the almighty dollar. Next comes, I deserve and I have a right to it. If it feels good, then I should be able to do it. Pride, Greed, and Selfishness still ruin lives. We listen to the serpent’s lie, that we can be God. We believed, because we want to do so. Satan never speaks the whole truth. We still choose to worship other gods. No, the first drink will most likely not kill you, but the hundredth may find you in jail for DWI, or dying of liver failure. Your first snort of cocaine could easily lead to your last. Love outside marriage may seem like it hurts no one, until you look at divorce rate, kids without fathers, and AIDS’ victims. Keeping up with the Joneses may give you ulcers, or heart attacks. Fitting into that size zero dress may kill you. Bitterness and unforgiveness leads to cancer or depression. The jails are full, and
most knew what they were doing was wrong. They chose to do it anyway. We still like the blame game. “If I had had better parents,” “if he had not hurt me,” “if I had known the outcome.” then I would have not done it. We are not responsible for what was done to us, but how we reacted to it. We are responsible for our actions. We want to say, ‘ “if we say I am sorry,’ then somehow all punishment and consequence should go away.” They don’t. If I run up the credit cards, the bills still follow me. If I abuse my child, she may not want to take care of me when I am old. The courts may find me guilty and sentence me to jail. If I fail to read, to study, to listen to God’s plan and obey it; I may find myself kicked out of heaven and into a hell of my own choosing. Like Adam and Eve, life eventually forces us to admit, that we are not God. We are not all knowing. We
I want to follow Jesus
I recently made a commitment
are not all powerful, and we are not able to wash off the stench of sin. We still try to add to His word and worship with our many rules and regulations that He did not bind to us. You can’t wear cowboy boots in Church or say amen without a committee hearing and a Church wide vote. Just like with Adam and Eve, God still comes looking for us, knowing all that we have done. He still forgives, and gives us life again. However, it comes at the price, the blood of His only Son. It is only given to those who accept salvation’s plan, who earnestly acknowledge and turn away from their sin. He still offers a precious gift of fellowship to any who seek Him. He still longs for us to walk through the garden together. p
By Kathy Barnes faithwriters.com/ loves writing and sharing member-profile. poems, prayer, and stories about God and the Gospel. php?id=47963
January - March 2016
As a bridegroom stands with his bride about to repeat the marriage vows, he thinks to himself, “This is a new beginning. My old life is over. I’m starting out on a long journey on a path I have never travelled before.” He remembered the first day as a boy of seven when he entered a new school, and knew none of the other children or teachers who would teach him new things in class. He remembered how apprehensive he was when his family moved to a new neighbourhood. He remembered how
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as a teenager he had really messed up his life with drugs, how embarrassed his parents had been after he had been stopped at 3:30 a.m. on the street trying to make quick money selling marijuana, and how as he sat in the police station with handcuffs, his mother arrived and with tears pleaded for him. “Yes, God is good!” Being under eighteen, the judge only gave him community service. Words of Scripture kept ringing in his ears, “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (1 Cor 5:17). “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5) and “There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Prov 18:24). He remembered a song he had heard at Church: “Closer than a brother, my Jesus is to me, He’s my dearest friend in everything I need. He’s my rock, my shield, my hiding place; closer than a brother Jesus is to me!” He looked at the beautiful girl beside him, decked out in bridal array, the bridesmaids, the flower girl and the page boy carrying the ring on a cushion. He glanced behind him at the large crowd of relatives, friends and well-wishers and he thought, “The same God, who carried me through all those new beginnings at school, in the new neighbourhood, and oh yes his new job, would be leading him into a more intimate relationship with Him.” Another glance at his bride filled him with a sense of elation, as she smiled back at him. They would become more intimate as they left their old lives behind and began their journey together into the future. The words of the marriage officer fell upon them. “When you are married, forsaking all others you will hold firmly to each other.” He thought deeply upon those words. It meant
leaving the influence of the past behind, clinging closely to his wife.
remnants of drugs he had kept hidden in his bedroom.
He listened intently as the meaning of the marriage ring was explained. “That one alone steps into that ring of intimacy with you. It is a commitment of separation from everything that would distract you from total surrender to each other.” And he remembered the closing words: “The wedding ring has no end. It is an eternal commitment to your beloved one.”
Did not the Israelites after leaving the bondage of Egypt go after other gods and serve the idols of materialism, following the surrounding nations? He had firmly decided to turn his back upon the love and accumulation of things, worldly pleasures and the lusts of his own eyes. And if his father, mother or close relatives forsook him, Christ would hold him in the palm of His hand as a precious gem.
He felt just then that he could fall on his knees and just worship the Lord of heaven and earth who had created such wonderful things, especially his bride. Right then as he squeezed her hand, he breathed a prayer. “Oh Lord, I give myself to you. I love you, Lord, and I lift my voice to worship You, O my soul rejoice. Take joy, my King, in what You hear. Let it be a sweet, sweet song in Your ear.”
The words of Christ rang deep in his soul: “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he CANNOT be My disciple” (Luke 14:26). And he understood clearly what the Lord meant. In comparison with how he loved his relatives, even his own wife, the depth of love for Christ would make the love of every other earthly person or thing seem like “hate.” Jesus Christ would be the supreme love and joy of his life.
In a few moments the vows echoed clearly, “Do you take this woman..?” “Do you take this man..?” and the responses of the couple, “I do!” It was so quick. But the words sealed the binding of their hearts and their lives forever. He felt the impact and depth of those precious moments and he remembered the moment that he had given himself completely to Christ. His eyes had been moist as a friend, who had been delivered from a wild,rebellious life, prayed quietly with him. The years of rebellion against his parents, the Church, and society, his excursion into the world of pornography and immoral living that had seemed to trap him into a cycle of wanting more of fleshly lusts, were gone forever. Christ had strengthened him to overcome all things. With that new beginning he had never gone back to his old friends and their way of thinking. He had thrown away the
He had said the words of commitment and surrendered everything to Him as Lord. That was better than any “high” he could get from any drug. When they stood outside the Church taking photographs, he knew he had the support of every true child of God, and that angels in heaven, who ministered to believers, would set up camp around him. He had never felt more safe and secure in all his life! Silently, as he smiled for the cameras, he prayed, “Thank you, Father, for making me a brand new man in Christ!” p
January - March 2016
By C Richard McCaw author, music teacher and many years as a Bible teacher
WORLD IN VIEW
“For what we are about to receive we are truly thankful”
Saying a blessing over a meal is commonly practiced in many homes by tradition or religiously. Ironically, while the Western World is obese and diseased as a result of greed, the Eastern World is starving. There is no food shortage in real terms. Famine today is a scandalous disgrace! We have the capacity and technology to feed the world several times each day, considering that the planet is not fully populated. However, supply and demand is controlled by an avaricious few ‘good capitalists’, creating so called ‘World Food Zones’ that makes us interdependent on each other for trade. Sadly, we cannot trust our governments or the food conglomerates, what to do? Do we return to God’s Eden eating plan? It was ‘very good’, designed to prolong life, as in organic and inviolate of contaminants but if we can’t practically return to this model we will have to sincerely bless our food and eat by faith. The faith that you have, have as your own conviction before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. “But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because it is not from faith, for whatever is not from faith is sin.” Romans 14:22-23 (NIV)
There’s wood in my food?
The cellulose used in many foods is processed powder or pulp from virgin wood. Since the virgin wood pulps and powders are not toxic, the FDA says it’s okay to use in food. The food industry and FDA Wood-derived ingredients common classify wood cellulose as fiber. The only limit on wood cellulose fillers in processed food is 3.5% in meat. All other foods have no limits for adding wood 14
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cellulose. Obviously, profit is the food industry’s main focus. Up to 30% savings are realized by using cellulose over other ingredients. After all, food ingredients are rising in cost.. usually cellulose adds to the shelf life. The products using cellulose range from junk food outlets, to supermarket shelf foods, and even one known organic
food item. The food industry and cellulose manufacturers publicize the health virtues of cellulose fiber. They promote “lower fat” and “high fiber” with their cellulose added foods. Wood cellulose is not toxic. But it’s not food either. Our enzymes cannot digest cellulose. Yes, we all need to take in fiber. Dry legumes, whole
grains, and most fresh plant foods contain fiber. Freshly baked whole grain breads from a trusted bakery contain natural fibers too. These are fibers that are part of actual whole foods. Cellulose in the ingredients list [on food packaging] is a giveaway, so another term used for wood cellulose is microcrystalline cellulose
Costa Rica Consumers Concerned About
(MCC). Cellulose gel and cellulose gum are other descriptions of wood cellulose. A more technical term of carboxymethyl cellulose could appear on an ingredient list as well. Louis, PF. There’s wood in my food? Wood-derived ingredients common in processed food, 10/04/11. Accessed 19/12/15. http://www.naturalnews. com/033767_cellulose_food.html
Costa Rican consumers have been complaining on social media of fake rice being sold by a company called TIO PELON the company says, that the Ministry of Health requires that in Costa Rica rice is fortified with micronutrients, bringing health benefits to the health of the population; The rice grains have been fortified with vitamins based on regulations changes slightly in colour and shape, though keeping intact its natural characteristics. According to weredblog.com, the news about fake rice originated
in Taiyuan, Shaanxi Province, China where resin (a sticky organic substance from some plants and trees) is reportedly common. The fake grains were made of mixed potatoes and industrial synthetic resin which can be deadly if eaten on a daily basis. However, Health experts are warning people that these plastic grains can cause harm to the digestive system if consumed. A Chinese Restaurant Association official said that eating three bowls of this fake rice is equal to one plastic bag being consumed.
Major food corporations use tissue from aborted babies to manufacture flavor additives in processed foods
(NaturalNews) Every time you purchase massproduced processed “food” from the likes of Kraft, PepsiCo, or Nestle, you’re choosing, whether you realize it or not, to feed your family not only genetically engineered poisons and chemical additives, but also various flavoring agents manufactured using the tissue of aborted human babies. It’s true: A company based out of California,
known as Senomyx, is in the business of using aborted embryonic cells to test fake flavoring chemicals, both savory and sweet, which are then added to things like soft drinks, candy and cookies. Known as “HEK293,” the aborted human fetal cell line used by Senomyx is manipulated to evaluate how the human palate will react to synthetic flavors used in the production of processed foods. Since most processed foods on the market today are hardly food to begin with, and typically lack any real flavor or appeal on their own, chemical
To make the matter worst, the difference between a fake and natural rice is quite hard to tell when raw. The only way to distinguished plastic rice is by cooking it as it remains hard and is difficult to digest. “One publication explained that soup cooked with plastic rice will form a plastic film over the top, which burns when heated.” according to oddity central. Rico, Costa Rica Consumers Concerned About “Fake Rice” 16/12/15, Accessed 20/12/15. http://qcostarica.com/costa-rica-consumersconcerned-about-fake-rice/
companies like Senomyx are hired to develop artificial ones (which are often deceptively labeled as “natural flavors”) in order to make them taste like real food. Senomyx has admittedly partnered with a number of major food manufacturers. Follow the link for a list of these: http://www.endalldisease. com Huff, Ethan A. Sickening: Major food corporations use tissue from aborted babies to manufacture flavor additives in processed foods, 15/04/15. Accessed 21/12/15. http://www.naturalnews. com/049367_aborted_babies_flavor_chemicals_ food_corporations.html
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All have sinned, either passively by not doing the right thing, or actively by doing the wrong thing. We are all sinners. Some time, in the life of a Christian, the Holy Spirit reveals the absolute awfulness of the selfish creature still in ourselves (the old man / woman), who must be crucified with Christ. When this time arrives, it may be highly depressing to realise that Christ had to die for your despicableness. When the realisation that Christ has
actually died for this materialises - we feel humbled. Doctrinally, we cannot continue until we stop dwelling on the past - stop crying over spilt milk - and continue our Christian lives, in the knowledge that we have repented and are truly forgiven. If we repent and believe then we are born-again, we can start all over again, we have a new-life. But to do what? Make the same old mistakes again?
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No says Romans 6 v.1. We are dead to sin. Also the Christian life is a life of discipline. To be a disciple, today, is probably sneered at (the spirit of the age says ‘do what you want and enjoy life’). Discipline however, is respected. (The Buddhist religions have disciplines which are highly regarded in today’s society e.g. yoga, kungFu, tai-chi and other Martial Arts.) To discipline yourself to the teachings of Christ and the leading of the Holy Spirit, is actually a very exciting prospect. If we, as Christians, disciplined ourselves to Christian doctrine, praying, discerning, hearing and doing the will of God, our lives would be exciting indeed. Jesus said, “I have come to give you Life, Life in all its fullness.” But, believe it or not, Christians can suffer with bouts of depression (Watchman Nee, Martin Luther, David Watson, C. H. Spurgeon and in the Old Testament Jonah, Elijah and David are examples). So how do we live this life of discipline in a modern stressed-out world? Martyn Lloyd Jones a medical doctor and preacher gives us some pointers in his book Spiritual Depression (originally titled “Miserable Christians”), suggesting the battle is against the world, the flesh and the devil – but mainly the flesh. You are your worst enemy! You war against the flesh by keeping yourself healthy, to the best of your ability, via regular exercise and eating well. (St Paul likens this to being like an athlete). This is difficult to do when we are
depressed, but by being disciplined we will overcome, and our mood will lift. All Christians should exercise, learn to cook and eat healthily. As Christians we are also duty bound to work. This “protestant work ethic”, is founded in the security of knowing you are in God’s will, meaning you are not working in vain but towards fulfilling your purpose on earth. “Those who don’t work shouldn’t eat,”are the words of St Paul. We are to be hard working. The other side of the coin is: - “you can’t serve God and mammon the god of money”. The rich young man, in the gospel account, had a problem with this - too much money. When Jesus said, give all your money to the poor, this was more than he could stomach, and he went away sad. We are to be generous in our giving and see our wealth as a means of serving the needs of the poor. Do not forsake meeting together St Paul also says “Do not forsake meeting together”, we do not function by being solitary Christians. We were designed to live as a community of believers – the body of Christ. But should we live in a Christian bubble? It is astonishing to read Jesus being accused of being a drunkard and keeping the company of sinners. Would Jesus be found in pubs and parties, today? It seems He probably would! It’s not the will of God for us to be secluded and live in monasteries or Christian
communes. But go into the world – “you are in the world but not of the world”. Though we are not to become worldly and we are to live sober lives, it is not necessary for us to become tea-total. We must have the character to be thermostats and not thermometers! Be thermostats and not thermometers! Do not live as the Gentiles [do] giving themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity with a continual lust for more. (Ephesians 4:19) This can be a problem even for Christians, pornography and the continual thinking about sex can take over your life – this is obviously indisciplined behaviour. The remedy for this is to stop doing it! Time wasted in this could be better spent doing more wholesome and worthwhile activity. We are not to be slaves to our sensualities. We are not machines, we are born of the Spirit, we now have a spiritual dimension so we must nurture it – take time to pray, read the bible and discern God’s will for our lives. Find out what God has gifted you with, discipline yourself and use it to His glory – do not hide your light. As God’s creatures, our ultimate goal is to please our maker and not ourselves, the old life has gone and the new is here. “New wine goes in new wineskins.” Cheers, to a new disciplined you! p By David White Christian and engineer by the grace of God
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2006 was an amazing year for me. It was the year that my life changed and everything I had believed in so far was turned upside down. During my school education I had never really questioned the teaching I had received on the topic of ‘Evolution’ as I took for granted that the ‘teachers’ knew what they were talking about, so evolution it is then. I had retired from the Fire Service after 32 years, of rescuing others from danger, but was still young enough to take on another job so I joined the Highways Agency, another rescue type of job. It was while working there that we worked in two’s and my colleague Dennis began to talk to me of his faith in Jesus Christ. I found this interesting and as he knew I liked to read about ‘scientific stuff ’ he lent me books on the subject of Creation Science. Wow did I have my eyes opened! He also gave me some DVDs to watch one was Drama in the Rocks. I bought myself a book too called ‘The Lie’ by Ken Ham from Answers in Genesis and it was from this factual information that was in the Bible, that I began to question my own belief in evolution. I realised evolution cannot be proven but creation can and there were many Biblical references that I could see. I realised that the human cell is so complex that it (which can be observed) is full of information and so cannot create itself. The complexity of DNA which we take for granted today also convinced me that we really are fearfully and wonderfully made by a highly intelligent
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Creator. I began to feel very angry that I had been lied to for all of my life on this matter and after a few months of study with my friend Dennis, I realised there is a Creator and that put me in a position where I had to acknowledge Him and make a serious decision - which I did. I decided to acknowledge Him as my Creator. I started going to Church with Dennis, I told all my family (which did not go down too well). As I found out more and more about Jesus and that He is Alive today I repented of my sin and accepted Him as my Lord and Saviour and I knew I was ‘born again’ all things became new the old things had gone…wow. He rescued me! God promised me He would never leave me nor forsake me and He hasn’t. My world view completely changed and I could see things in a different light. I became aware that we live in a Godless society. I want more and more people to come to know this wonderful Saviour Jesus. Get inquisitive like I did. Research for yourself and He will show you the truth as He did me. After all Jesus said. ‘No one can come to the Father except through Me. I am the Way the Truth and the Life…p See also: article ‘Did You Know’ on page 24
MONY of John Payne
I began to feel very angry that I had been lied to for all of my life... January - March 2016
THE ALMOND TREE 20
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In the UK and Israel this issue of SHARE Magazine comes in the middle of Winter. The last important Bible Feast was Tabernacles in October last year, Father God gave us no feasts during this six months period. However, the Bible does allow the celebration of two minor feasts - Chanukah during December and Purim which this year starts on the evening of Wednesday, March 23rd. In God’s eyes and in the view of the Bible we are in a period of joyous anticipation. The Spring feasts will soon be upon us. These will start with the Passover meal on the evening starting the 14 Nisan. (I.e. on the evening Thursday, April 21st) On this day we remember the final meal of Jesus with His disciples. The meal reminds us of our deliverance from bondage to sin into a life of joyous obedience to our God and Saviour. However, there were things to look out for in these long Winter months. One was the blossom on the Almond trees. In Israel this happens in late January to early February. It is a glorious time, similar to the wonderful Cherry Blossom season in Japan. Suddenly seemingly dead trees spring into life with glorious white or pink blossom. This blossom seems to come from nowhere because it happens before any leaves appear. The white blossom indicates sweet almonds and the pink bitter almonds.
down with troubles and say, ‘I don’t enjoy life anymore.’ ... 12:5 ... Your hair will turn as white as almond blossoms.” Those of us who are a little older understand this. We may not be as physically able but we still enjoy our service of the King Jesus. The almond tree was warmly seen as the first signal of Spring. Probably due to this its Hebrew name is “shaqed” meaning “the watcher”. Basic to this Hebrew word is the idea of being alert. It was this aspect the Prophet Jeremiah was reminded of. In Jeremiah 1:11-12 we read, “YHVH showed me something in a vision. Then he asked, ‘What do you see, Jeremiah?’ I answered, ‘A branch of almonds that ripen early.’ ‘That’s right,’ YHVH replied, ‘and I always rise early to keep a promise.’” Sadly, the promise here was not one of blessing! No, God was promising terrible punishment due to Israel’s refusal to turn from adding pagan traditions in their worship.
This is a glorious reminder that Spring was soon on its way. It inspired a number of writers in the Bible. Solomon speaks of the abundant white almond blossom he saw every year in Ecclesiastes, when speaking of old age:
You see, God is reminding the people that He will always be watchful and punctual when it comes to dealing with sin. Sin is not something God can take lightly. Oh, we all too easily brush off our sin by comparing it with others. God does not do that, all sin is just that, “sin”. All sin deserves and shall receive the penalty of death, complete separation from God and from life eternal. Sin is so serious it meant God had to send His only Son, Jesus, to suffer that penalty in our place! Only by believing that and turning, in repentance, away from those things God calls sin can we know His love, forgiveness and eternal life.
12:1 “Keep your Creator in mind while you are young! In years to come, you will be burdened
God will always keep His promise of punishment for sin. However, because of Jesus He
will also keep His promise to those who will repent. To those who will start living as He says we should in His Word, the Bible. In Jeremiah 31 God says this, “Those who feel tired and worn out will find new life and energy, and when they sleep, they will wake up refreshed.” (Jeremiah 31:25) Well, again for those of us a little older, we definitely look forward to God fulfilling this promise! In Psalms 127 verse 1 we read all about how we should watch our lives, both individually and together: “Except YHVH guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” (MEV) This is the quality of watchfulness each one of us needs. However, it must start with a relationship with God. If we come to know Him through all He achieved in His Son Jesus, then we can be sure He will watch over and guard us. Be sure of this: “The Lord isn’t slow about keeping his promises, as some people think he is. In fact, God is patient, because he wants everyone to turn from sin and no one to be lost.” (2 Peter 3:9) We need to remember that God’s promises are first to deal with sin. But because of His love for us He also promises to deliver us from the result of sin. Where do you stand? Under the first promise of sure judgment? Or under the second promise of complete forgiveness and cleansing from sin because of what Jesus has done for you at Calvary? p By Philip Clark author and archeologist specialising in Biblical Studies
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By Homer Slack
Think! Questions In Genesis That Will Make You Think How did the tree of good and evil get into the middle of the garden?
The tree from which God told Adam not to eat was in the middle of the garden. You could not miss it. But if eating of this tree meant sure death wouldn’t it be best to remove it? No tree, no temptation, simple! Whoever planted this tree and in such a precarious position must have known that it could be a temptation to Adam and Eve. So who planted the tree? God did, so there must be a very important lesson to learn as God does everything deliberately. God did not want man to sin but man himself needed to develop a distaste for sin. Moving the danger away from us would remove the opportunity but not
the desire. Even Jesus learnt obedience through the things He suffered, we too must face the realities of temptations and learn to overcome them. What killed Adam and Eve? Was the fruit poisonous? Hearing this story as a child the immediate thought that came into my mind was that the fruit was poisonous. A closer look however, will reveal that nothing was wrong with the fruit. It was as Eve observed, “... the woman saw that the tree was good for food…” The devil highlighted the fact that nothing was wrong with the tree. Yes, nothing was wrong with it. It’s like sex, the experience of sex in or out of marriage is virtually the same, but there is a difference that being, God commanded that we should
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not have it outside of marriage and He knows best why we shouldn’t. God designed sex as more than a means of physical reproduction; it is firstly an act of spiritual worship where the Holy covenant of marriage between husband and wife is consummated. Fornication is wrong simply because God says so! It is clear therefore that it was disobedience to God that killed Adam and Eve and not the fruit. If at some later point God gave them permission to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil then, at that point, it would be perfectly okay. Sin kills because sin is disobedience to God,which breaks our union with God and this separation is spiritual death, God’s eternal life is no longer in us we immediately begin to degenerate.
Where was God when Eve was being tempted? With close observation we will discover that God was not present in the garden with Eve when she was tempted. Her temptation took place between verses 1 and 4 of Genesis chapter 3. God did not turn up until vs 8. This teaches an immense lesson. We cannot fight and win the devil or sin on our own. We need God with us to win. Therefore, God has now given us His promise that He will never leave us or forsake us. There is no need for us to repeat the failings of Eve. God is always there for us and will give us a way of escape for every temptation. We need only to take it. Did Adam die that day or 930 years after? What is death? “.. of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.’” (Genesis 2:15-17) God told Adam that he would die in the day he ate the fruit yet the Scripture says “all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years; and he died.” (Genesis 5:5) If God said they would die that day why did Adam live on for 930 years? The answer to this seeming contradiction has to be one of three possibilities. 1) God lied. 2) The day God spoke of was not a day as we know it. 3) The death God spoke of was not death as we know it. Number one is out because God cannot lie. Number two is a possibility but I would be inclined to go with number three because there is much more supporting evidence for this. The death God spoke of was not a natural death but a spiritual one. You will notice in the New Testament that Jesus and the apostles when referring to the physical death of a believer would say they are sleeping. That is physical prolonged unconsciousness because the soul has left the body. Man is a living soul and when the soul leaves the body we call it death but God calls it sleep because we will awake again in our bodies to be judged at the end. Real death is when one’s soul is barred from the presence of God and is condemned to terrible fear and torment for eternity.
Why did God call Adam asking him where he was? Didn’t He know ? “The Lord called out to the man and asked, ‘Where are you?’” It is common knowledge that God is all knowing so God knew where Adam and Eve were. So why call asking where He was? We see a similar situation with Elijah when he was on the run from Jezebel. God came to the cave where he was hiding and asked him what he was doing there. God asks these questions for which He already knows the answer. These questions therefore aren’t meant to clarify our position to God but to ourselves. We need to ask ourselves “where am I?” or “why am I here?” God wants us to search for ourselves and ask ourselves if we are where God said we should be? Have I strayed from the path or have been lead away or have fallen away? You should clarify your spiritual position! What really is nakedness? “How did you know you were naked?” For some strange reason nakedness suddenly became apparent after Adam and Eve sinned. Some say they were not naked before because they were clothed with the glory of God but the Scripture itself declared them as naked before they sinned, see the last verse in chapter 2. I think the clue to their revelation of nakedness is also in this verse, the fact that before they were naked but “not ashamed.” I think shame is the factor here. Nothing is odd when a wife steps out the bathroom naked in the sight of her husband. Such a scenario however, would be quite different if it was a stranger standing there. Before our married partners there is a sense of safety, security and confidence. We know that the most intricate and embarrassing features of our bodies and personality would be shielded and protected by our loving, compassionate partner. We feel known, understood, accepted and loved. For Adam and Eve to feel ashamed when naked before each other indicates a terrible break down in their relationship. Intimacy indemnifies us against shame and embarrassment.
The fact that a fully clothed woman could be stripped naked by the eyes of a lustful man is also indication that nakedness has more to do with what the mind perceives than with what the eyes see. Whose fault was it that Adam and Eve sinned? For most of my years I spoke of how Adam blamed Eve for their demise only to realise recently that really, it was God that he was blaming. Adam answered God, “It was the woman You put here with me,” It’s as if Adam is saying to God, ‘If You did not put this woman here with me this would not happen’. To this day people will not take responsibility but find it easier to blame God when they do things wrong. A common complaint against God has to do with the present suffering in this world. Note however, that our present suffering is of our doing, not God’s. What came to me as a shock also was that neither Adam or Eve thought of apologizing to God for blatantly disobeying His command. Like Adam we break the laws of nature, the moral laws etc. and when the accumulative effect of lawlessness impacts us personally we then blame God. If we continue to rebel against God why blame Him when He leaves us to our own devices? Was both Adam deceived?
This may come as a shock to some but the truth is that Adam was not deceived. He was quite conscious when he ate of that fruit. “... and the man Adam wasn’t the one who was fooled. It was the woman Eve who was completely fooled and sinned.” (1 Timothy 2:14) This realisation therefore introduces another question, why then did Adam do it? Why did Adam consciously and knowingly go with his wife against the command of God? Some commentators suggest that he idolised his wife and that he placed pleasing her above obeying God. God is a jealous God and we should have no idol before Him. p
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by John Payne
GOD CREATED THE WORLD IN 7 DAYS Why Are Scientists Afraid to Admit Biblical Creation?
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth... Genesis 1:1-5 (KJV) In today’s society and especially in our education system the thought of a Creator is slowly being erased as ‘Evolution’ is now the ‘scientific norm’. The danger is that this theory is being taught as an irrefutable fact and it is far from being such. Up until 50 years ago scientists believed that the universe was eternal and had always been there. BUT they found out through experimentation that the Bible was correct and they were wrong. They had always believed that the Universe was eternal and had always been in existence which they needed it to be to support their billions of years theory. They had lost their ‘Holy Grail’ that the Universe was eternal. Outside of the Universe there is totally nothing, inside the Universe space, is something. It is made up of matter (particles, time and energy). 24
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The scientists found at the beginning of the universe what is called quantum fluctuations (creative force). The universe allows creation from nothing providing you have ‘ The Laws of Nature’,their terminology, Quantum Physics and Relativity eg. Einstein E = mc2. The laws of nature are not physical they act on the physical and that means if they created the Universe, then they pre-date the Universe. So, we now have a set of forces we call them the laws of nature that are not physical they act on the physical, they create the physical from nothing and they pre-date the Universe which is predating our understanding of time. Put that together and that sounds very familiar. Yes, the Biblical God, because He is not physical, He acts on the physical, He created the physical from nothing and He pre-dates everything because He is eternal and outside of time. So what the scientist call the ‘laws of nature’ is actually the Biblical God our wonderful Creator. They refuse to see God because of their humanist world view which will not allow a Divine ‘foot in the door’ of their theories. If they do they will have to acknowledge that He exists and therefore they will need to become accountable to Him, submit to His authority and live by His moral laws. They would be forced to acknowledge that HE IS THE DIVINE CREATOR...GOD, and that their theories are false! Rather humbling... don’t just accept the indoctrination of evolution read for yourselves and come to know the truth. p Further reading: Book: The Lie by Ken Ham I Went from a Believer to an Unbeliever in Evolution by Robin Calamaio http://www.faithwriters.com/articledetails.php?id=63665 Jesus Taught Against Evolution by Richard D Kloosman http://www.faithwriters.com/articledetails.php?id=42250
Genesis 1:26 Then God said, “Let Us (God, Jesus and Holy Spirit) make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them (Adam and Eve) have dominion over the ﬁsh and the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” When God created the Heavens and the Earth He intended man to live with Him in a wonderful relationship. He is our Creator and we are His creation. Now, as God‘s created beings Adam and Eve were given to rule and look after this Earth doing it in obedience and fellowship with God. A beautiful Garden of Eden all new, lush and perfect. All Adam and Eve had to do was obey God, have a loving relationship with Him and enjoy His blessing. But oh woe! We know what happened.
Read Genesis 3 The fall. That terrible fall, taking the devils word over God’s word. “Did God say?” was his deceitful strategy. What a wicked deception getting them to doubt God. Instead of running to God they went and hid themselves. But read on. Hope is there all is not lost. Genesis 3:15 a promise of a Saviour, Jesus Christ the Messiah. The only way back is Jesus. There is absolutely no other way to God and Heaven. Now read John 3:15 “that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He
gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” A new restoration and perfect beginning. Only the sacrificial blood of Jesus can atone for sins, that and no other. God made a way for a new beginning and we can run to Him instead of hiding. John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, “Most assuredly, I say unto you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” John 3:5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” How can folks be born again if they are already born and living on this Earth? To be born again is our second birth a new spiritual birth with a new beginning. How do we walk in our new born again spirit and have new life? We were ALL born in sin. Some folks might say. “Me a sinner! What! I’m a very good person. I help folks. I don’t swear, steal or kill or lie.” Really. Don’t believe the lies of the devil Adam and Eve caused a spiritually death falling into that terrible deceit of the devil. Romans 3:23 “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord.” We are totally and utterly lost without Jesus. Our new spiritual birth in Jesus brings eternal life. Romans 6:4 “Therefore we are buried with
Him through baptism of death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in the newness of life.” Read the rest of Romans 6 it speaks so much of dying to sin. Being born again and ﬁlled with the Holy Spirit, walking in a relationship with God and Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit is the beginning of a new spiritual restored life. Having faith, belief, trusting and a loving relationship with Holy Trinity is so beautiful. Why settle for anything less. 2 Corinthians 6:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new.” A BRAND NEW ME AND A BRAND NEW YOU! HALLELUJAH! Prayer. Dear Father thank You that You so loved me You sent Your Son to die in my place. Dear Jesus because You loved me You gave Your life for me. Help me through the power of Your Holy Spirit to walk in the new beginning of the salvation You purchased for me. I believe You to be the Holy Lamb of God that You have washed away my sins with Your precious blood. I am a new creation in You Jesus. Thank You. Amen. p
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by Lynda K Smith writer, proof reader, poet and Evangelist
Seed Of Th THE FIRST PROPHECY
The first prophecy recorded in Scriptures is a profound one. Genesis 3:14-15 “... And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise [or crush] your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” The foretold enmity between seeds brings to our attention two groups of people, the woman’s seed and the serpent’s seed.
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There are not very many times when I have seen the undeniable, supernatural power of God manifestly at work in a miraculous way but this day was one such time. The Church where I became a born again believer and was a member had annual family days where members would stay back after service for a day of fellowship and updates from the leaders. Members were told to take along a packed lunch as this was a whole day affair. The leaders from the governing body that oversees this Church were often also present. On this particular day I remember our pastor and Church leaders laying out the plans for the coming year to us. They mentioned plans to develop about an acre of idle land that formed part of the Church’s property. They proposed planting vegetables etc. there but would need help from members of the congregation. As I listened and looked over the congregation the word of the Lord came to me. “The people need my Holy Spirit to refresh them so they can complete this project. They are not filled with my Spirit and therefore the project will fail if they do not get filled.” I thought the Lord wanted me to tell this to the leaders so during the break I approached them. My pastor introduced me to the visiting leaders before I proceeded to relate what the Lord said to me. January - March 2016
As a fairly young believer then, I did not expect the response I received. Not one of them considered my message as possibly coming from God. Not one took some time to reflect or consider but instead immediately started to debate with me as to whether or not there was such a thing as being ‘filled with the Spirit’. I may have been young, inexperienced and not as knowledgeable in Scriptures as they were but I knew God told me something. None of these men, that had so much to say, had the spiritual girth to pick up on the fact that God had spoken, they all missed it. That day it dawned on me how far religious formality was from spiritual reality. There could be more enemies of the cross among God’s people than there are outside the Kingdom, the seed of the serpent right here among us.
THE ANTICIPATION The serpent [the devil] fully aware of the prophecy above looked henceforth with nervous anticipation for the Seed that would crush his head. From that time on he would desperately try to stop the birth of anyone who could possibly be that person. If he failed in aborting the child he would then try to kill it shortly after birth. We have two such prominent stories where the seed of the devil ordered the massacre of boy babies based on
he Serpent which he had determined from the wise men.”
Here are examples of the historical enmity trail recorded in the Bible: Seed of Satan
news of a coming deliverer or King. Somehow the devil knew that a child of God’s choosing, one destined to deliver God’s people was about to be born so he used his seed, the Egyptian Pharaoh, to pass a decree to kill all newly born male children. Exodus 1:22 “So Pharaoh commanded all his people, saying, ‘Every son who is born you shall cast into the river, and every daughter you shall save alive.’” In the story of Jesus’ birth, the Seed of the woman that the prophecy was truly about, and Herod, the seed of the serpent who attempted to kill Him is quite similar and very well known. Matthew 2:13-16 “Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, ‘Arise, take the young Child and His mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I bring you word; for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him.’ … Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under, according to the time
Cain Able Esau Jacob Pharaoh Moses Saul David Jezebel Elijah Haman Mordicai Herod Jesus Jewish Leaders Jesus Judas Jesus
SEEDS REVEALED The fact that Jesus, and we who are in Him, was the seed destined to crush the devil’s head is now common knowledge. But who are the serpent’s seed? If we take note of those Jesus and Stephen identified in their time we will be better able to identify those among us today. Listen as Jesus exposed them in John 8:44 “Ye are of your father the devil [the serpent], and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” Listen as Stephen exposed them in Acts 7:51-54 “Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye
do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers: Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it. When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.” As they were back then, so they are today. Religious hypocrites that uses flattery to gain advantage and promotion among God’s people. Men puffed up with the pride of their scholarly achievements. They consider themselves better than others and insist that we honour and look up to them. They persecute, banish and assassinate the characters of those who will expose their falsehood and hypocrisy. Men who look the part and have the talk that will fool us into believing they are genuine but they do not know, love or obey God. Wolves in sheep’s clothing who have a form of godliness but are without the Holy Spirit and without faith. Paul, as he listed the dangers he faces for the sake of the gospel, mentioned the dangers of being among false brethren. These hypocrites are dangerous, they are the offsprings of the devil, stay clear of them. Needless to say that the vegetable project proposed that day failed. p
January - March 2016
JARGON BUSTER EDEN OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS
Biblically believed to be the cradle of mankind and all living creatures, a perfect paradise an inviolate garden.
SIN Any action or thought that violates the laws or authority of God.
THE FIRST ADAM Adam: the first man. Adam being (male) was created by God in the garden of Eden and is referred to in scriptures as a living soul. The First Adam therefore was the first human comprising of body and soul.
THE LAST ADAM Jesus, the Last Adam, restored the first Adam’s fallen position by atoning for his sin. He was killed by crucifixion and buried but rose triumphant over death, sin and satan and appointed by God to give eternal life to all who call on Him. Jesus, the life giving Spirit, ends the first Adamic kind that was cursed by sin to begin a new kind born of the Spirit of God and called the very children of God.
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Old Testament just simply means: A covenant between God and the human race, mainly Israel, given by God but with promises for the human race through Abraham. New Testament means a new covenant given by God to ALL MANKIND and He did this by sending His son Jesus.. The old has now gone the New has come. Testament also means ‘ A Will’ so when a new will is made out it makes any previous will null and void. A last will and Testament is also a covenant. This New Covenant was written in the blood of Jesus our Saviour and Messiah. So Old Testament is Old Covenant…New Testament is New Covenant. I must say at this stage that there are many promises of God and other covenants contained within the Holy Bible that we can cover in further issues.
January - March 2016
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The Biblical view of the origin of man and creation as recorded in Genesis states that God created the heaven and the earth and mankind. Mankind had the unique position of responsibility over all creation and direct fellowshipped with God. However, when sin entered the world because of mankind’s disobedience to God [sin] we lost that position of being in God's Holy presence and being in direct fellowship with Him. This is what is referred to as the fall of man. Fallen man therefore has no moral core and is always driven by the need to fulfil his sensual desires. This human self centredness has brought the World and our planet to it's present state of decline. It is nothing like it was when God first created it. God's plan to redeem us from this fallen position is realised through accepting His son, 'the last Adam' Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour through faith [trustful obedience]. p
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Ode To The Creator Droplets of water, shards of light; Peals of thunder; Starlit night; Ocean’s spray, angel’s ray; Calm green meadow, first light of day; Midnight dew, dusky dawn; Twilight hew, life reborn; Skylark cries, green grass whispers; Eagle flies, kitten whiskers; Fluffy tail, strong bulking frame; Long elegant mane; Butterfly kisses, shooting stars wishes; Rainbow swashes, moon beam watches; Changing seasons, eternal reasons; Worldwide symphony, cosmic epiphany; Terrestrial songs and ethereal throng; Join in testifying Yahweh is one; Mountain top table, ice capped peaks; Plunging valleys, livestock roaming, rambling fields; Bounty filled meadows, small critters at play; Ice lakes and glaciers, whale spout spray; Penguins applaud, ice crabs scamper; Old sea lions awake from their repose; Bear cubs sneezing honey from their nose; From clump of earth through all of Milky Way; To distant galactic stars; All living things worship and say; Yahweh how awesome You are. © Angela Slack 2012 January - March 2016
Note To Self
Mind, mind wake up it’s self, it’s me; Are you kidding? Do you know what time it is in the morning? I know, I know it’s after three; Come on mind, co-operate, I need to think things through; Body needs her beauty sleep, she will be really mad with you; Trust me. It’s important, I am overwhelmed with lists; You know I am discombobulated when I feel like this. Well now that you mention it, you really seem perplexed; Body doesn’t feel so good either, she is tensed with stress; Notepad in hand body? Ready let’s go! You are going too fast mind. Please take it slow! Finally it’s annotated. Gosh, what a list; Who would have thought there was so much to do? Yes, it’s great when we talk like this. What’s going on mind? I am tired would really like to sleep; I have tried closing a file which soul keeps opening to peep; She has been meditating all night; Really? The irony; sounds like she needs your help with processing; Oh, Body, can’t you make her sleepy this is quite taxing; I’d add some crying as well, to signal it’s time for relaxing; Unforgiveness and hurt gets me so sick; Mind, you must hurry, help me resolve it. “Lord I forgive her”, aah that freed my soul, Oh, I have cleared my mind, prayed and cried what a blessing! And body, you seem to have gotten rid of that cold; I am so glad I stayed home tonight and did soul searching;
Seems words can be as hard as stones and break a heart if carelessly thrown; Oh, body look at you. You have seen better days; Don’t go there, I endured your depression and suffered your unending craves; All right, let’s get this house in order. Spring cleaning it is; Let’s see, a detox for body and regular exercise at the gym; But mind, you need quiet time first thing in the mornings Or else you will never fit it all in; Hey, soul needs her worship music, a garden filled with sunlight, A spree of girly shopping and she will be just right; I think that ought to do it now let’s get back to bed; I love it when we meet like this, makes the coming day go full steam ahead; Brain, have you got all that Can you memorise it? Or shall body help you write a list? Definitely the latter, remember what happened last time, we were remiss? This is how we flow together; The workings of mind, body and spirit; The processing, the feeling and the doing are all a part of it; None works without the other, it really takes all three; I’ve learned to listen in turn, giving expression to all of me; Especially as I grow older, there is so much more to do; Time is growing shorter, not just for me but for you too; The art of self expression is unique for all; It is really one of a kind; There are no two persons with the same two spirit, body or mind.
In Praise of Hymn All Things Bright and Beautiful
Each little flow’r that opens, Each little bird that sings, He made their glowing colors, He made their tiny wings. All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small, All things wise and wonderful: The Lord God made them all.
2 3 4 5
The purple-headed mountains, The river running by, The sunset and the morning That brightens up the sky.
The cold wind in the winter, The pleasant summer sun, The ripe fruits in the garden, He made them every one. The tall trees in the greenwood, The meadows where we play, The rushes by the water, To gather every day.
He gave us eyes to see them, And lips that we might tell How great is God Almighty, Who has made all things well.
Reviewing Great Christian Hymns Written by Rupert Christiansen, This Sunday School hymn for infants was first published in 1848, in a collection of hymns designed to raise money for deaf-mutes. It was written by Mrs Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-95), wife to the Archbishop of Armagh and Protestant Primate of Ireland, as a way of elucidating the opening of the Apostles’ Creed: “I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/3668059/The-story-behind-the-hymn.html
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In this issue, we go back to the book of Genesis to plot mankind’s journey in relation to God as his creator. There are many life lessons to...
Published on Jan 5, 2016
In this issue, we go back to the book of Genesis to plot mankind’s journey in relation to God as his creator. There are many life lessons to...