DOUBTS ABOUT YOUR CHRISTIAN FAITH? TAKE ACTION NOW!

Do you have doubts about the Christian faith?

You know the story: Thomas was the only apostle not present when Jesus appeared to the disciples on the evening of his resurrection. When the rejoicing disciples later told Thomas that Jesus was alive, he flatly refused to believe them. He had seen the crucifixion.

The gospel goes on to relate that a week later Jesus indeed appeared to Thomas, and invited him to put his hand into the holes in his hands and feet. Thomas was utterly overwhelmed. His response was ‘My Lord and My God!’ He saw, he believed.

Then Jesus said something which is relevant to us today. “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:29)

Jesus KNOWS it can be hard for you, who have never seen him, to believe that he is indeed alive, and Lord of all. Which is, of course, where we are today.

Perhaps you really struggle with doubt. Well, there are two courses of action you can take:-
1. Don’t read the Bible. Begin to forget what Christianity teaches. Don’t go to church.Don’t ask God, or anyone else, for help.
Your ‘doubts’ are perfectly honest questions, but stop looking for answers. Assume that because you have questions, there are no
answers.

2. Look for some answers. Find out what the New Testament actually says about Jesus – by reading it! Do not be confused into thinking that you ‘doubt’ something which you may not even really ‘know.’

Pray – remember that Jesus said that those who believe without seeing are ‘blessed’. So ask God that, if he is there, please would he ‘bless’ you by opening your eyes to spiritual realities. Go to church.

Yes, the Christian faith demands that we take God at his word, with no evidence other than his Word. But though we believe in Jesus without seeing him, we do NOT believe without considering him. Faith is not blind credulity and unthinking naiveté.

We have faith in the historic person of Jesus Christ. Peter writes some real encouragement in his first epistle, “Though you have not seen him,
you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls” (1 Peter 1:8-9).
Rev Dr Roger Roberts

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Why Did Jesus Fold The Napkin?

On that first Easter morning, John’s gospel (20:7) tells us that when Peter stooped and when into the tomb, he found the linen
wrappings that Jesus’ body had been wrapped in, thrown to one side. But the napkin, which had been placed over the face of Jesus, was neatly folded, and placed at the head of that stony coffin.

Why?

Why should Jesus fold the napkin after his resurrection?

The significance of the folded napkin might be found in Hebrew tradition of the day. When a servant waited on his master at the
dinner table, and the master was done eating, he would rise from the table and toss the napkin to one side. But when the master was not finished, he would fold his napkin to indicate that though he had left the table for the moment, he was coming back.

When Jesus folded his napkin, could it be that he was saying to the  world: I may be leaving now, but – I am coming back!?

One day, the  Bible teaches us, he WILL!

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Wth many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Doing Good To All – new Biblical Word Search

My wife, Marlene, has just created a new Biblical Word Search based on Galatians 6:7 “Do not be deceived. God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows”.

To freely download the new word search please visit:-

http://christianwordsearches.net/DoingGoodToAll.html

 

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Getting Over One’s Past

“…they shall obtain joy and gladness;
sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”
(Isaiah 51:11 )
All of us have chapters of our lives that we wish we could rewrite. Unresolved emotional pain wreaks havoc on our immune system,
cardiac function, hormone levels and other physical functions. Yet we must make peace with our past, because our life may literally
depend upon it.
To get over our past, we must start looking at it differently. Don’t just focus on what you lost, but on what you also gained. Second,
understand the difference between guilt and shame.

Guilt is feeling bad about what you’ve done – it’s healthy; shame is feeling bad about who you are – that is toxic and debilitating. All of us have things we’d like to change about ourselves, but when God created you, he loved you.
Third, stop punishing yourself with the ‘if only’s’. After sinning badly and having God pick him up, David wrote: ‘Happy is the person whose sins are forgiven…whom the Lord does not consider guilty.’ (Psalm 32).

Forgive yourself; God has, if you believe and trust in Jesus Christ.
Finally, move on from your pain. Let yourself begin to heal. There will be stages of anger, fear and sadness – that is part of the natural
process. But let them come – and go, and move on. You can’t walk backwards into the future: and the future that God has in mind
for you contains more happiness than any past you can remember.

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Do You Know How The Apostles Died?

Bartholomew -

also known as Nathaniel was a missionary to Asia, He witnessed for our Lord in present day Turkey. Bartholomew was martyred for his preaching in Armenia where he was flayed to death by a whip.

Andrew -

he was crucified on an x-shaped cross in Patras Greece. After being whipped severely by seven soldiers they tied his body to the cross with cords to prolong his agony. His followers reported that, when he was led towards the cross, Andrew saluted it in these words “I have long desired and expected this happy hour, The cross has been consecrated by the body of Christ hanging on it”. He continued to preach to his tormentors for two day’s until he expired.

Thomas -

was stabbed with a spear in India during one of his missionary trips to establish the church in the sub-continent.

Jude -

was killed with arrows when he refused to deny his faith in Christ.

Matthias -

the apostle chosen to replace the traitor Judas Iscariot, was stoned and then beheaded by the evil Emperor Nero at Rome in AD57.

 Paul –

endured a lengthy imprisonment which allowed him to write his many epistles to the churches he had formed throughout the Roman Empire. These letters, which taught many of the foundational doctrines of Christianity, form a large portion of the New Testament.

 James the Just -

Leader of the church in Jerusalem was thrown over a hundred feet down from the southeast pinnacle of the Temple when he refused to deny his faith in Christ. When they discovered that he survived the fall his enemies beat James to death with a fuller’s club.

(This was the same pinnacle where Satan had taken Jesus during the temptation)

James the Great -

son of Zebedee. He was a fisherman by trade when Jesus called him to a lifetime of ministry. As a strong leader of the church, James was      ultimately  beheaded  at Jerusalem. The Roman officer who guarded James watched amazed as James defended his faith at his trial.

 

Perhaps this is a reminder to us that our sufferings here in the 21st Century are indeed minor compared to the intense persecution and cold cruelty faced by the Apostles during their times for the sake of their Faith.

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Old Maggie lived on the shores of Lochiel on a croft along with a few hens, a few sheep and a cow named Daisy.

Maggie did bed and breakfast in the summer months to help with the expenses. She was a Christian and went to Church every Sunday if she could. The church building was used every Sunday by four different denominations. She loved the fourth Sunday service the best when her own
minister, a young man who was very sincere and a great believer in the power of prayer took the service.

One day her cow, Daisy, took ill and she was greatly troubled and sent for the minister.

The minister’s wife said that he would come to her as soon as he possibly could. He caught the 1.30pm train and then walked three miles to her croft. After a cup of tea and a chat Maggie asked him would he come to see Daisy and pray for her. He wasn’t to keen to pray for a cow but felt he could do no other. The minister put his hand on Daisy’s head and said, ‘you poor old beast, you do look bad, your poor old missus is so sad to
see you like this, so may the good Lord spare you to her for a good while yet’ Daisy recovered and Maggie sang the praises of her minister and of the power of prayer for a long time afterwards.

One Sunday later her minister was ill with an abscess in his throat. Maggie was so worried that she phoned the Manse to see if she could visit the minister. Next morning she did all her jobs quickly and did some baking. She hung an old tyre over the gate to indicate to any passing neighbour that she wanted a lift into town.

With her bag packed with eggs, a pot of jam, and her own baking, she put on her coat and hat and sat down waiting for a lift. At last she heard a motor horn honking at her gate so she got a lift into town.

At the door of the Manse she was welcomed by the minister’s wife and given a cup of tea, then she was taken in to see the minister. Very
solemnly she put her hand on the minister’s head and said ‘you poor old beast you look so bad, your poor old missus is so sad to see you like this, so may the good Lord spare you to her for a good while yet’. Amen.

The minister and his wife laughed so much that the abscess burst and the crisis was over for him, and it was the result of old
Maggie’s prayer – SIMPLE CHILDLIKE FAITH.

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

 

The Snake

There is a story told of a man who was out in the forests of South America, when he saw a bird chirping and fluttering in great distress.

He soon saw why. Creeping along the branch of the tree towards her nest was a great venomous snake, intent on taking her fledglings, who were still helpless in the nest.    Suddenly the bird flew away, and the man thought she had abandoned her chicks.

But no, a few moments later she was back, with a small twig covered in leaves in her mouth. The bird placed this twig over her babies in the nest, and flew to a branch nearby, to watch for the snake’s arrival.

Sure enough,  the snake glided along the branch, and paused in front of the nest. It reared its sleek head, eyes glittering, its tongue darting here and there, ready to strike. Suddenly its tongue came into contact with the twig that the bird had laid across the nest.

The result was dramatic. The snake veered back and away, as if it had been stabbed by the little twig. It swayed for a minute, and then slid quickly off and down the tree, disappearing into the long grass.

The man was fascinated, and carefully lifted the twig off of the nest, wrapped it in a bit of cloth, and took it home with him. He showed the twig to a native friend, asking what it was.  His native friend explained that the twig was from a bush that was poisonous for the snake, and which it was known never to touch. The little helpless bird had used the small twig as her strong defence from attack.

Satan in scripture is known as ‘that old serpent’ He is intent on the destruction of people. But God has told us in his Word that there is a tree which is poison to our enemy, and which offers protection for all of us, old and young alike. It is the cross of Jesus Christ. On the cross Jesus died for our sins.

We need no longer live under evil dominion.

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey