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Jesus Delays in Coming

Pastor’s Column 5th Sunday of Lent April 2, 2017 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he remained two days in the place where he was. John 11:5-6 It is safe to say that most people, upon hearing of the grave illness of a close friend, would naturally try to drop everything to be by the side of their loved one as soon as possible. If, like Jesus, we had the power to cure our friend, how much more would we want to hurry! And yet, not only does Jesus not hurry, he deliberately waits until Lazarus is dead! The scriptures make it quite clear that “Jesus loved Martha and her sister (Mary) and Lazarus.” When you think about it, Jesus seems t

Suffering and Opportunity

Pastor’s Column 4th Sunday of Lent March 26, 2017 Here are the three principal actors on the stage of our gospel this Sunday (John 9:1-41). First we have all the scribes and Pharisees: they have the power of sight, while in fact they are spiritually blind. There is a blind man, who is sitting by the side of the road, begging for alms. Finally, Jesus and his disciples are passing by. For some reason, the sight of this handicapped man raises many questions in the minds of the disciples: “Whose sin caused this?” This question comes right out of the religious thought of the time: the more prosperous and healthy I am, the more God has blessed me. The more I have to suffer and be deprived, t

Like a Pen in God’s Hands

Pastor’s Column 3rd Sunday of Lent March 19, 2017 Why was Jesus so attractive to the Samaritan woman at the well (John 4:5-42)? Ironically, he told her everything she ever did. Each of us will have a similar discussion with Christ on the last day of our lives. Jesus will point out where we influenced someone to the good, as well as where we hurt someone and this is how it played out in their lives. If only we could have this conversation now! Why wait until life is over to see which areas of our lives please the Lord and which need to be corrected? Isn’t the best time right now? If only Jesus could get through to us now, we would be much more effective servants for him. A deep examinat

Transfiguration in Suffering

Pastor’s Column 2nd Sunday of Lent March 12, 2017 Beloved: Bear your share of hardships for the gospel with the strength that comes from God. 2 Timothy 1:8 As hard as we try, we simply cannot avoid suffering in our lives! For both religious and non-religious people, suffering is simply part of the human experience. Neither money, television, good health, alcohol nor drugs can insulate us from the cross. Many of us simply do not understand the value of suffering. In the transfiguration, Peter, James and John would have preferred to stay on the mountaintop with Jesus in glory forever. In a sense they were briefly in heaven, and who would want to leave that place? Yet Christ made it ver

Adam and Eve Moments

Pastor’s Column 1st Sunday of Lent March 5, 2017 The story of Adam and Eve is at first glance deceptively familiar to us. Adam and Eve were given every kind of happiness one could possibly imagine. Their food literally grew on trees; they lived in beautiful surroundings; most importantly, they were able to walk with the Lord and converse with him face to face in friendship. There was just one catch – they were also in the middle of a test –the test of obedience. What was the nature of this test? God made one tree deliberately off-limits. It was appealing to look at and the fruit looked delicious. Yet God had warned them that everything would be lost – they would be expelled from paradi

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