Pastoral 2013

Christians in God’s Presence

Written by Rev (Dr) Prabhudas Koshy Sunday, 21 April 2013

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CChristians must rejoice being in the presence of God, praying and worshipping Him. To a great many people, prayer is an activity that they engage in when they are perplexed. It is not just ‘running to God for help’. Though it is important that we call on God in our troubles, the activity of prayer is more than seeking His help to relieve us of our troubles.

The apostle Paul wrote, “I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting” (1 Timothy 2:8). It is important to note that this verse emphasises the manner in which we come before God in prayer rather than what we pray. If we know how to pray or how to approach God in prayer, we will know what to pray.

The first and foremost necessity in prayer is that we approach God’s presence in holiness. This is the emphasis of Paul’s words – “I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands.” It is not the lifting of hands in prayer that pleases the Lord, but the lifing of “holy hands”. The words “holy hands” are indicative of the purity of life. Spiritual purity must be the first concern of every Christian who approaches God in prayer. “Follow . . . holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14).

Prayers offered without holiness is an abmination to the Lord. The Lord declared to the people of Israel, “And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil” (Isaiah 1:15-16). Proverbs 15:8 reminds us: “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.”

It is absolutely wrong to think that anyone, anywhere, at any time can call on the Lord and expect an answer from Him. “Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth” (John 9:31).

Secondly, we must approach God “without wrath”. The word “wrath” refers to resentment and unpleasant feelings towards God’s will. It can also be indicative of our bitter, angry feelings and attitude towards others. If we approach God in prayer with a resentful spirit, the Lord would not be pleased to hear us.

Finally, we must pray “without doubting”. We must pray without doubting God’s existence, wisdom, power, faithfulness and promises. If we ever pray with any doubt about God’s greatness and goodness, it is better that we stop praying. In such a state, our prayer is useless.

So let us make sure that when we draw near to the Lord, we do so in holiness, submission, love and fullness of faith in Him. Only then our prayer shall be acceptable to Him. “Sinning will make a man leave off praying, or praying will make a man leave off sinning.”

 

 

 

Thanksgiving Emails

 

Eld Eliezer Ortega

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

All glory and honour be unto God for all the blessings that we had received from the mother church and the brethren during our stay in Singapore for the church’s 25th anniversary. It was indeed a great blessing for me and my wife to attend such a joyous occasion. I would like to thank Pastor Koshy and the Session members for giving us the opportunity to celebrate this significant event with all of you.

I praise and thank the Lord for the love, care and hospitality the brethren had extended to us. We were received with such warm fellowship by the brethren and were much blessed through their encouragement and giving. It had been a time of spiritual refreshment, mutual encouragement and edification for us.

May the Lord continue to prosper the work entrusted by Him to the mother church.

 

 

 

Pr Engida Tefera

Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Thank you, Pastor, for your continued love, encouragement and ministration of God’s Word, year in, year out, to God’s people. My wife and I are praising and thanking God for His manifold blessings and goodness unto us.

We and the brethren in our church appreciate very much what you have done for us for the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you for everything.

I am very thankful for the opportunity you had given me to celebrate with you the 25th anniversary of Gethsemane B-P Church. I was blessed to be invited, and further blessed by God to have attended the church anniversary. I really enjoyed my time with you. The time spent with you was a time of encouragement, learning and blessing, both spiritually and physically. I am so encouraged to know how God has sustained this church through many hardships and trials for the past 25 years. Indeed, this is one way we can know how Gethsemane was established by God Himself to proclaim His Word so as to bring sinners to His Kingdom. Great things He has done and greater things He is going to do. And also, I have learned so many things from the life of God’s people, particularly how they love God and His people. To me, it was a very special moment and a historical event to be one of you on this occasion. I again thank you for the great hospitality and blessing I had received. I appreciate it so much. I really enjoyed my fellowship with you. Especially the Care Ministry brothers, really, I want to thank you, all of you, for the love, care and wonderful hospitality you had shown to me and Pastor Ephrem. I am so happy to have stayed with you; truly, it was a blessed time of fellowship with you. I have warm memories of our stay, especially the food provided for us by the Care Ministry brothers. Our stay was absolutely wonderful! May God bless you and keep you in His Kingdom. Finally, thank you for praying for my wife Mulu. Praise God that our baby was safely delivered a week ago.

All glory be to God!