If you want to know what happened, ask an eye-witness.
Three of Jesus’ disciples were eye-witnesses of a spectacular event when they saw Him ‘transfigured’ up on a mountain. They saw a glimpse of the Lord in all His majesty – radiant and shining like the sun. They also heard the voice of God saying: This is my Son, whom I love…listen to Him!
The gospel message of Jesus Christ is not a man-made story. The Bible is not just a book. The disciples have given us their eye-witness account of life with Jesus, as guided by the Holy Spirit. We are children of the living, true God who brought salvation to us through His Son, Jesus Christ.
There is a catchy tune called “Don’t worry, be happy” which has been recorded by quite a few musicians.
It sounds all well and good, but how realistic is it to expect us to simply not worry and be happy? Things go wrong, we have health issues, people lose their jobs, and all sorts of other things can trouble us and make us unhappy.
When Jesus said “don’t worry” He was far more realistic. He said we could trust our heavenly Father to watch over us at all times. You and I are important to Him, so He will not turn away and leave us.
True happiness is found in the Lord through His love and blessing.
Salt & Light
A few years ago Kermit the Frog sang it easy being green.
It also isn’t easy being salt and light in the world as Jesus calls us to be, but that should not stop us trying. People stumbling around in darkness need the light of Jesus shining through us.
Salt preserves and gives flavour, and we too are to be the flavour of Christ in our world.
Sometimes we do this well and other times we don’t. Each and every follower of Christ, at some point, needs encouragement and forgiveness because we are less than perfect. We need to be givers of God’s grace as well as receivers. The ministry of growth groups in our congregation is just one way we have an excellent opportunity to do this.
When John the Baptist pointed Jesus out to two of his disciples, they turned and followed Him. The two disciples spent the day with Jesus, no doubt talking and listening, and at the end of it Andrew went and found his brother to tell him: we have found the Messiah! Actually, it was the Messiah who found them.
As we meet with Jesus we are called to encourage one another and to go and tell. Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. He takes away the very thing that separates us from God so that we can live with Him fro ever. Isn’t that worth talking about!
Isaiah 49:1-7 The servant of the Lord
1 Corinthians 1:1-9 The Lord God is faithful
John 1:29-42 Jesus: the lamb of God
If you want an accurate description of an event, it pays to have an eye- witness account; someone who has seen or experienced the event first hand.
St Peter and the other apostles were just that.
They ate and drank with Jesus after He rose from the dead, so they could give an accurate account of Him as the risen Lord. Everyone who believes in Jesus as their Lord and Saviour receives forgiveness of sins through His name.
He came into the world to give His own life for our sake.
Without Jesus we would have no hope for the future, but thank God we have a certain future! We are headed for heaven!
Successful athletes spend hours and hours in training to be at their best when competing. An athlete who doesn’t train won’t be very successful.
The same applies to God’s people.
Several times St Paul used the analogy of an athlete in training to encourage his readers in their Christian living.
To live a life worthy of the Lord, St Paul says we should bear fruit in doing good, grow in our knowledge of God, and be strengthened by His power, which in turn will give us greater endurance and patience for life.
Faith is meant to be put into practice or it becomes like an idle muscle, sagging from a lack of use.
For he has rescued us from the territory of darkness and brought us into the light the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Inaugural Pastor’s XI versus Chairman’s XI
Sunday afternoon, 24th March 2013, members and friends of Zion attended the first ever Pastor’s XI versus Chairman’s XI cricket match. The match was organized by the men’s fellowship group, ‘Bloke’s World’.
The afternoon was held at the Immanuel Lutheran Primary school oval with perfect sunny weather. A fundraiser barbecue lunch was held with drinks, cake and plenty of tea and coffee.
There was a cricket quiz for the spectators. The cricket players were asked for a $10 donation to be in one of the two teams. Children’s games were played during half time.
Luke, our Chairman won the coin toss and opted to send in Pastor Geoff’s team to bat first.
Pastor Geoff’s team won the day. A great fellowship day, all who attended had a great time.
Sometimes it can be hard trying to measure up to other people’s expectations. What about measuring up to God’s expectations? Several hundred years ago, during the 16th Century, a monk by the name of Martin Luther found this weight of expectation too much to carry. Try as he might, he felt that he could not measure up to God’s lofty standards. This left him feeling very much afraid of God.
Then one day God revealed an amazing truth to Luther. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace, through faith in Christ Jesus (Romans 3:23). This wonderful truth is the gospel in a nutshell. God loves us and has given us His Son to pay the price for our sin. God’s expectation is simply that we believe and accept His gift of grace.
The Lord promises a new covenant
We are justified by faith
The truth sets us free
Whenever someone asks: “Would you do me a favour please?” I usually want to know what the favour is before answering. Some favours can be ok, but others are not. Two of Jesus’ disciples asked a favour of Him which was not ok. They wanted Him to give them places of highest honour in His glory, but this was not even His to give.
Not surprisingly the other ten disciples became angry when they heard about it. You can imagine the tension which would have been present between them. Following Jesus is not about personal prestige and power; it is about submitting to the Will of God and serving Him. Even the Son did not come to be served, but to serve (Mark 10:45).
Job 38:1-7, 34-38
The Lord challenges Job
Jesus the Great High Priest
The request of James and John
What a great invitation we have from Jesus. He said: receive the kingdom of God like a little child. As children are open and trusting of their parents, so we are free to be that way with God. He offers blessings now and for ever through Jesus and all He asks is that we receive them like a child receives a gift from its’ parents. You are a child of God and He loves you with His whole heart.
Psalm 139: 14-18
Hebrews 4: 12-16
Mark 10: 13-16