Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Talk Tuesday-Happy New Year!!! Watch and Pray, Trust and Obey

We, at BGO, would like to take this opportunity to wish you a Blessed and Holy New Year in the Lord Jesus Christ! As we enter 2015 and reflect on 2014, let us encourage one another to WATCH and PRAY, TRUST and OBEY.

Jesus exhorts us to, “...keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come,” Matthew 24:42; “So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him,” Matthew 24:44.

Scripture tells us to, “pray without ceasing,” 1 Thessalonians 5:17, to “devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful,” Colossians 4:2, knowing that, “The Lord is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in truth,” Psalm 145:18.

Proverbs 3:5-6 encourages us to, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.” God has a specific purpose for your life! “11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future,” Jeremiah 29:11.

Obedience will allow us to walk confidently in those plans. “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves,” James 1:22; “Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise,” Ephesians 5:15. “13 Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it,” Matthew 7:13-14.

Lastly, watchfulness, prayer, trust and obedience are all bound by faith in Jesus Christ, who is “the author and finisher of our faith,” Hebrews 12:2. If you don't know Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, it is not too late! “'The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart' (that is, the word of faith which we preach): 9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved,” Romans 10:8-10.

Happy New Year!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Talk Tuesday-What's So Merry About Christmas? Pt. II

Last week we read about Jesus Christ, the Incarnate One, 'Immanuel' who is 'God with us.' The Bible tells us that while the shepherds kept watch over their flocks, an angel of the LORD announced, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord,” Luke 2:10-11. The birth of JESUS heralded good news and glad tidings for all mankind. It meant that the bondage of sin would be broken, freeing us from its power and its penalty, restoring us to right relation with God, bringing salvation to all who would believe.

JESUS came for our redemption: “11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.” Titus 2:11-14

JESUS came to give His life as a ransom for ours: “5 For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all people.” 1 Timothy 2:5-6

JESUS came to justify us: “He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.” Romans 4:25

JESUS came to reconcile us to God: “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!” Romans 5:8-10

JESUS came for our salvation: “12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12

Receive the best gift Christmas has to offer and you will never be the same! "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord," Romans 6:23.

What's so Merry about Christmas? It's the PEACE, JOY, HOPE and LOVE that JESUS brings to one and all! We at BGO would like to wish you a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Talk Tuesday-What's So Merry About Christmas? Pt.1

The answer is found in the CHRIST of Christmas. The birth of JESUS was announced to the prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 7:14) approximately 700 years earlier. “22 So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: 23 'Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,' which is translated, 'God with us,'” Matthew 1:22-23. The angel Gabriel said to the virgin, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS,” Luke 1:30-31.

Who is this JESUS that we celebrate at Christmas? “15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers,” Colossians 1:15-16. The term Incarnation refers to the second person of the Trinity, JESUS CHRIST, the Logos or Son of GOD made flesh. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.2 He was in the beginning with God,” John 1:1-2, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth,” John 1:14. JESUS CHRIST, the Incarnate One, the Son of GOD, is fully GOD and fully man, “For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily,” Colossians 2:9. He is the Saviour of the world, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29.

LOVE is what's truly merry about Christmas. Join us next week for the 2nd instalment of 'What's So Merry About Christmas' as we reflect on how the celebration of the birth of the Incarnate One, JESUS CHRIST, who is 'God with us', is truly about a celebration of a love so divine that it washes away all our sins, heals all our hurts, restores all our brokenness, and gives us beauty for ashes.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Talk Tuesday-A Lesson From Psalm 107

Have you ever gone through a period of discouragement where you felt like your prayers were hitting the ceiling and coming back down? Discouragement is such a deflating emotion. It makes our hearts question God's love, His purpose for our lives, His willingness to help us and it shakes our faith. Ever wonder why in a season of discouragement it feels so hard to pray and connect with God? When emotional weariness and spiritual fatigue set in, the best thing to do is to meditate on God's faithfulness-to remind ourselves of all that He has done for us in the past, and to give thanks.

Psalm 107 boldly begins with the exhortation, “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He redeemed from the hand of the enemy,” Ps. 107:1-2. Remember where you were before you came to Christ. I was lost, confused and without purpose. When I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour, He filled me with passion, joy, peace, love and pointed my compass heavenward. This weekend, as I meditated on Psalm 107, this line demolished the wall of hardness that was developing in my own heart, “Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered them out of their distresses,” (Ps. 107 verses 6, 13, 19, 28). Those who wandered in the wilderness, those who sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, fools in their transgressions and merchants in their ships all cried out to the Lord in their distress, and in His mercy, He answered their call.

I pondered this greatly. Then I felt the Holy Spirit gently remind me to cry out to the Lord in my distress because He WILL answer. His Word says so. I went home, picked up my guitar and began to sing His praises. I started to recall all that He had done for me in the past and thank Him for it. Suddenly my strength was renewed like the eagle's. Brothers and Sisters in Christ, if today you find yourselves in a dry and weary land, think back on the goodness of the Lord and praise His Holy Name. Let faith rise up! It is good to give thanks for we are the redeemed of the Lord and God will NOT fail you.