Monthly Archives: June 2016

Life thoughts: 1 Timothy 3

1 Timothy 3

Came across this chapter today because I used it in the class discussion. It surprises me that almost every lesson I’ve been reading in my personal time is for ministry and addressed for those in the ministry. The overseer in verse 1, episkope, speaks of someone in authority in the ministry. This could certainly be a senior pastor or someone who is recognized in authority like a seminary president, professors. Deacons, on the other hand, are those who serve, maybe under the overseer. These might include those who minister but are not in any position. Even though the overseer is also servant, it is more likely used for the deacon. But both tasks are of the church and the ministry.

Obviously there are more requirements for someone to be an overseer, it should be a man. The deacon, in Romans 16:1, can be female. The same word diakonos was used. This is the basis of every selection of those who direct ministries and also pastors in our church.

Makes me ask myself, am I even close to any of these? I am still not a pastor, did not even dream of being one. But all my churchmates keep on praying for that to happen to me. I am scared. I have a great career in classical music and in the academe ahead of me but I am open to God’s will. I can surely use both and I plan to do that in my Ph.D.

Verse 7 says that the overseer must have a good reputation even outside of the church. Martyrian is also used for the word testimony. I just pray that God will help me be a good testimony to those around me especially my students and co-workers. I don’t know what God’s plan is, but all I know is that it is unique to me.

Advertisements

Life thoughs: James 1:19-27

James 1:19-27

Today is church day. I always look forward to Sunday because even though I do a lot of ministries on a Sunday, I still consider it a time of rest.

Our lesson for today is about words. We are blessed because everything in church is synced with the lesson. Sunday School is about the passage, the preaching is about the passage, and small group questions throughout the week is about the passage. I learned so much today. Maybe because the passage seems familiar to me. And my dad (the preacher) referenced a book by Dr. Anderson, Triumph Through Trials. So the theology seems very familiar to me. I particularly learned the meaning of the word hearer. It is likened to someone who audits a course in school. He hears it, but doesn’t really do anything with it because it doesn’t matter to him. I admit that application of the Word is one of my weaknesses, maybe as well as others too. But I said in our small group that application shouldn’t be very general. But it has to seep through every detail of life.

Another thing I learned is that it is not only words that we communicate but also body language and facial expression. I fail so much in this part of communication. I tend to be too transparent or too uninterested at times and people see it in my face.

So here is my application of that lesson. I will try to take a few seconds off before I respond verbally to anyone. And I think what works with me is to be a little bit poker faced but still looking at someone’s eyes when I talk or when they talk to me so that they would know that I am interested. Need to work this out.

Life thoughs: James 1:19-27

James 1:19-27

Today is church day. I always look forward to Sunday because even though I do a lot of ministries on a Sunday, I still consider it a time of rest.

Our lesson for today is about words. We are blessed because everything in church is synced with the lesson. Sunday School is about the passage, the preaching is about the passage, and small group questions throughout the week is about the passage. I learned so much today. Maybe because the passage seems familiar to me. And my dad (the preacher) referenced a book by Dr. Anderson, Triumph Through Trials. So the theology seems very familiar to me. I particularly learned the meaning of the word hearer. It is likened to someone who audits a course in school. He hears it, but doesn’t really do anything with it because it doesn’t matter to him. I admit that application of the Word is one of my weaknesses, maybe as well as others too. But I said in our small group that application shouldn’t be very general. But it has to seep through every detail of life.

Another thing I learned is that it is not only words that we communicate but also body language and facial expression. I fail so much in this part of communication. I tend to be too transparent or too uninterested at times and people see it in my face.

So here is my application of that lesson. I will try to take a few seconds off before I respond verbally to anyone. And I think what works with me is to be a little bit poker faced but still looking at someone’s eyes when I talk or when they talk to me so that they would know that I am interested. Need to work this out.

Life thoughts: Secured in my Father

Our position will affect our condition. If we are sure about something, it will always affect how we behave. Eternal security is important with our intimacy with God, because like a son’s assurance of his father’s love to Him, (this has been my case when I was young) even if I don’t win my basketball games, even though I miss some notes in playing the piano during my recital, even though accidentally bumped the car, even though he gets angry, I am assured (and he does assure) that at the end of the day, he still loves me. For a son like me, the security of his love and acceptance of me no matter what I do is one of the greatest driving forces to live life. For sure he gets angry when I do foolish things, and it will be only natural for me to think again if he loves me or not, if I am still welcomed in the house or not, but as his character is, our relationship will never have an end.

As God’s children, that security we can only found in Him brings us intimacy with the Father in two ways:

  1. Even if we prove ourselves to Him or not, He still is our father. We do not need to spend our whole lives trying to please Him by doing good works because when we believed Christ’s death and resurrection for the purchase of our sins, we were already made perfect in God’s eyes.

Hebrews 10:5-10 says:

5 Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says,

 

“Sacrifice and offering You have not desired,

But a body You have prepared for Me;

6 In whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have taken no pleasure.

7 “Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come

(In the scroll of the book it is written of Me)

To do Your will, O God.’”

8 After saying above, “Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have not desired, nor have You taken pleasure in them” (which are offered according to the Law), 9 then He [a]said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will.” He takes away the first in order to establish the second. 10 By [b]this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

 

Romans 5:1 says: Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,.” Christ already did what we can never do: to perfectly please and appease God.

 

  1. Because we are secured in His love and acceptance for us, we can spend our whole life in gratitude and worship as we become closer and closer to God who has given us this everlasting love through our relationship with Him. Our gratitude in worship or living our life for Him brings us to a more intimate knowledge of who God is. “…since we have confidence to enter the holy place…and since we have a great high priest…let us draw near with a sincere heart…let us hold fast the confession of our hope…for he who promised is faithful.” (Heb. 10:19-23)

So papa, thank you for the security of love you have given the family. I am not perfect but I think you still see all of us as wonderful blessings from God. Thank you and I love you.

Life thoughts: James 1

James 1

I will do half of this chapter on James today, and another half tomorrow. This is our church’s lesson for the next 2 months and I am excited to learn much from this very practical book. I learned from my Soteriology class under Dr. Anderson that some use this book to justify faith and works. But from a plain reader this might not seem a book likely to have anything to do with our salvation. Verse 1-18 talks about double mindedness. This is the person who is unstable in his faith. Christ on the other hand is not double minded. Verse 18 says that in Him there is no shifting shadow or variation.

What comes into mind when I encounter this passage is my constant battle with sin and my sinful nature. It’s really a struggle. Everyday I struggle with lust, that praise God I suppress with studying His Word. But I wonder, aren’t we all in a way double minded? We know what is right but we continue to sin. That’s what happens to me every single day. Up to this point, yes I admit that I am still unstable but God holds me dear to Him. Which brings me to ask again, why? I don’t understand God’s love. How can he love someone like me who continues on hurting Him? I can just hold on to His undouble-mindedness. He is stable, actually more than stable. He is the standard. And I am ever so grateful that I am His child.

Life thoughts: I’m back

I’ve had so much thing to write the past years, that I need to put them somewhere. So here I am. Will be posting a lot these next few months on my writings about Biblical passages because of my Master of Ministry degree I am now pursuing and another will be my analyses of some classical music because of my Master of Music that I am also pursuing at the same time.