Pastoral 2015

From You Sounded out the Word of the Lord

Written by Rev (Dr) Prabhudas Koshy Sunday, 24 May 2015

Print

Calling for your prayerful participation in the upcoming church events

Dear brethren,

Several important events are lined up in the coming few weeks to spread the glorious Gospel of our Lord Jesus near and far. Your prayers, participation, cooperation and contributions are much coveted. Children, youths, adults and seniors alike must rise up to serve the Lord with joy and enthusiasm.

May what was said about the Thessalonian church be true of our church also – “For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak any thing” (1 Thessalonians 1:8).

Please read the following, and purpose in your heart and do all that you can as the LORD leads you. Our love for the Lord, His Word and Christian fellowship should not decline. With purity of heart and zeal, we must serve the Lord.

Mission Trip to the Philippines (23-28 May)

As you read this pastoral letter, two mission teams from our midst will already have been ministering in two different parts of the Philippines. All of them had left Singapore yesterday. One team, ministering in Pangasinan, comprises Pr Dennis Kabingue, Pr Jeremiah Sim and his wife Gina, Kenneth Wong, Violet Quek, Joanna Lim and Sarah Yong. The other team, ministering in Cebu, is made up of Eld & Mrs Mah Chin Kwang, Pr Kelvin Lim, Melissa Mah, Cornelius Koshy and Dorcas Koshy. My wife Carolyn and I left Singapore on Thursday morning to minister to our mission church in Bohol, and will be joining the team in Cebu this evening. Members of the teams will be involved in several activities - preaching in the worship services, special meetings and lectures, praising God and exhorting brethren in songs, DVBS for children, home visitations, street evangelism, etc.

Youth Gospel Meeting (30 May)

Here is an excellent opportunity to bring some youths to the knowledge of our Great Saviour. Preacher Ko Lingkang (from Calvary Pandan BPC) will preach the Gospel message. I would like to urge all, both adults and youths alike, to take full advantage of this event to bring someone who is yet outside Christ to hear the Gospel.

Chinese Bible Conference (06 June)

Our Mandarin congregation has planned a Bible Conference on the topic, “Value of Godliness”. Scripture says in 1 Timothy 4:8, “godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.” Let us come and consider together this very precious topic from Scripture. Invite Christian friends also. God willing, I will be preaching in English, with Pr Daniel Lim interpreting into Mandarin. Please pray for us.

Church Camp (15-19 June)

In less than a month, if the Lord permits, we will be heading to Holiday Inn Resort, Batam, for our annual church camp. The next few weeks of preparation are crucial to us. Let us earnestly pray for the camp committee and all those who assist in various aspects of the camp. The camp committee is made up of Eld Ng Poh Kok (Camp Master), Pr Jeremiah Sim, Bernard Lim, David Tan, Ng Kwan Teng and Matthew Mah. The committee is in the final stage of organising the camp. Let us praise God for their labour and cooperate with them so that we may all enjoy a blessed camp.

This camp has the largest participation we have ever had. We thank the Lord for enabling 216 (to date) to sign up for the camp. Let us avail ourselves to be a channel of blessing to one another. Because of the larger than expected gathering, there can be potential delays and problems in some areas of the camp. Let us show patience, if problems do occur. Please approach the camp committee members for any assistance you need. Nonetheless, let us have the mind of our Lord always – “not to be ministered unto, but to minister” (Matthew 20:28).

There are about 10 brethren who are in need of help. Those of us who have the ability to lighten the burden of these brethren, let us give as the Lord enables us. (Please indicate at the back of the cheque or on the envelope, “For the support of Church Camp participants”.) Jesus said in Matthew 25:40, “Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”

Let us also earnestly seek the Lord, that our faith may be strengthened through the learning of God’s Word and the fellowship of the saints. The study of God’s Word in the camp will be centred on the theme, “Have Faith in God”. During the night messages, Rev Tan Kian Sing will teach from the Epistle of James on how we should exercise our faith in fulfilling our duties and overcoming our challenges and trials of life. For the morning devotions, God’s Word will be expounded by Pr Dennis Kabingue, Pr Jeremiah Sim, Pr Kelvin Lim and Bro Andrew Koh. In the morning sessions, I will expound the camp theme from God’s Word. Brethren, pray for us that God’s Word will be greatly magnified in our midst. Oh that our faith may increase day by day!

 

Have You Been a “Dwelling Place” of Christ’s Word?

 

The apostle Paul exhorted in Colossians 3:16, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom”. What is “the word of Christ”? It refers to the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. Christ is their author and their subject matter. The Scriptures testify of Him. Jesus said, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39).

So, when we listen to the words of the Bible, we are listening to Christ Himself. It should surprise no one that Christ has such titles as “the Word” (John 1:1, 14; 1 John 1:1-2; 5:7; Revelation 19:13), “the wisdom of God” (1 Corinthians 1:24, 30; Colossians 2:3), and “the truth” (John 14:6). He was “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14); in fact, “grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17)!

We honour Christ by honouring the Scriptures which testify of Him and His will. So Paul exhorts us, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you”. His Word must not be like a guest, a visitor, an acquaintance or a stranger with whom we cherish no special, devout and abiding relationship. His Word must not be like a friend whom we seldom meet up with, but rather, His Word should be as a resident member of our family with whom we are in constant and loving communication.

Let the Word of God dwell in you. To be sure, it is not enough for God’s Word to be on your study-tables, in your bags, in your hands or in your digital communication devices. Rather, you must yield yourselves as sacred “dwellings” to be occupied by His Word. It should be allowed to control and direct your lives at all times.

We are exhorted not only to let the Word of Christ dwell in us, but also to let it dwell richly in all wisdom. It must be allowed to teach, rebuke, correct, instruct, comfort and guide us, so much so that all its wisdom may be seen pre-eminently in all aspects of our lives.

Simply put, no other “occupant” is allowed to remain in us unless it is in full agreement with this chief dweller. Any other human thought, idea, ambition or craving that is contrary to the Word of Christ must be expelled at once. All our thoughts are to be vetted and approved by its wisdom. All our ambitions must be made hallowed by its wisdom. The wisdom of Christ’s Word must guide us all day long, and all the days of our earthly life. Christ’s Word must fully occupy us always. Let its glorious wisdom illumine us within, so that its splendour might shine through us.