Adventures Wherever He leads.

Shanghai, Hong Kong, and beyond… immeasurably more than all we could ask or imagine

You don’t even realise how messed up Christianity is. March 27, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 2:12 am

http://samuelkee.com/2014/03/24/you-dont-even-realize-how-messed-up-christianity-is/

People like to make fun of Christianity, perhaps for its stance on gay marriage, evolution, or religious pluralism.  But, these are just the tip of the iceberg.  If you really want to see how messed up Christianity is, just consider one of its fundamental beliefs, the doctrine of justification.  Then you’ll see how bizarre it really is.  If you’re going to make fun of Christianity, you might as well hit it in its gut.

Let me explain.

You’ve found a new job.  You get ready for your first day, put on the right clothes, and show up to work.  Before you can punch in, your boss hands you a paycheck and says, “Here’s your pay for the year.  You don’t have to work for it.”

You’re starting a new class.  The teacher hands out the syllabus and explains what will be required of you.  Then she says, “By the way, I’ve already given you an A.  Congratulations.  Your grade does not depend on your work.”

You’re going to try out for the team, but before you walk out on to the field, the coach tells you, “I’ve selected you to be the captain.”

You want to be in the orchestra, but before you can play a single note to audition, the conductor says to you, “I’ve selected you for First Chair.”

You meet someone that you like, but before you can ask her out on a date, as she’s meeting you for the first time, she says to you, “I do!”  And you’re married.

You’re a Muslim and you want to earn God’s favor.  You know that you have to fulfill the five pillars of Islam.  But before you say a single prayer, your leader says to you, “You’ve already made it into Paradise.”

Can you imagine any of these ridiculous situations?  They all put “reward” before “work.”

You want to be a Christian, but before you can live obediently to the Bible, Jesus says to you, “I do.” 

Before you can perform the commandments, Jesus has given you righteousness and eternal life.

That’s how it was when I became a Christian.  Someone introduced me to Jesus one fall night, told me that he loved me and wanted to have a relationship with me for all eternity.  That’s intense!  Jesus didn’t even know me yet!  So I thought.  Don’t I have to do good things for him first?  Don’t I have to earn his love?  Just like every other situation?  Nope.  Will you marry me?

Do you realize how messed up Christianity is?  It messes up how this world operates by introducing a whole new economy.  It declares your spiritual bank account “full” before you’ve ever made a deposit.

This is a radical, retroactive religion, which works backwards, rather than forwards.  Everything else works forwards: you work and then earn the wages of your work.  But Christianity says, “The wages of our work is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).  That’s the doctrine of justification.

Are you sick of earning favor?  Why not start receiving favor?  Christianity stands alone.

 

Friends of the Paralytic November 27, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 1:59 pm

http://www.islandecc.hk/messages/friends-of-the-paralytic/

 

Scandal of Grace- Hillsong United September 10, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 1:33 pm

Scandal Of Grace

Grace, what have You done?
Murdered for me on that cross
Accused in absence of wrong
My sin washed away in Your blood

Too much to make sense of it all
I know that Your love breaks my fall
The scandal of grace, You died in my place
So my soul will live

Oh to be like You
Give all I have just to know You
Jesus, there’s no one besides You
Forever the hope in my heart

Death, where is your sting?
Your power is as dead as my sin
The cross has taught me to live
And mercy, my heart now to sing

The day and its trouble shall come
I know that Your strength is enough
The scandal of grace, You died in my place
So my soul will live

Oh to be like You
Give all I have just to know You
Jesus, there’s no one besides You
Forever the hope in my heart
[x2]

And it’s all, because of You, Jesus
It’s all, because of You, Jesus
It’s all, because of Your love
And my soul will live

Oh to be like You
Give all I have just to know You
Jesus, there’s no one besides You
Forever the hope in my heart
[x2]

 

A Tribute to Mr. Rogers August 26, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 2:38 pm

https://www.facebook.com/IslandChristianAcademy

Yesterday, I found out while in a church service that our Principal for the past week had passed away. I was grieving pretty hard over it in addition to feeling really alone with Janie’s passing while my whole SH family was mourning together. I had a lot of questions for God and felt like… i was wondering this and that.. but Ultimately he reminded me that he is a good God, no matter what.

It is with deep sadness and sorrow that we inform you of the sudden passing of our Principal, Mr Timothy Rogers, on Sunday morning. Tim died of a heart attack while he was out on a morning run – an activity that he loved. We will miss hiswelcoming smile, creativity energy and enthusiasm. As our new school principal, Tim spearheaded our Exploration Hub (Library), Chess Club, and Literacy Week with his unforgettable Pirate Costume. Please join the staff as we pray for the Rogers family, our students and the entire Island Christian Academy community, as we mourn the loss of this dynamic Principal, colleague, mentor and friend. 

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me – the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give me on the day of his returning.” 2 Tim 4:7-8

 

First Day Jitters August 18, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 5:53 am

Tomorrow marks the first day with students. Pr@ying hard… :)Image

 

Psalm 34 August 16, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 12:01 am

Taste and See That the Lord Is Good

[a] Of David, when he changed his behavior before Abimelech, so that he drove him out, and he went away.

34 I will bless the Lord at all times;
    his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
    let the humble hear and be glad.
3 Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
    and let us exalt his name together!

4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me
    and delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to him are radiant,
    and their faces shall never be ashamed.
6 This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him
    and saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel of the Lord encamps
    around those who fear him, and delivers them.

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!
    Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
9 Oh, fear the Lord, you his saints,
    for those who fear him have no lack!
10 The young lions suffer want and hunger;
    but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.

11 Come, O children, listen to me;
    I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
12 What man is there who desires life
    and loves many days, that he may see good?
13 Keep your tongue from evil
    and your lips from speaking deceit.
14 Turn away from evil and do good;
    seek peace and pursue it.

15 The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous
    and his ears toward their cry.
16 The face of the Lord is against those who do evil,
    to cut off the memory of them from the earth.
17 When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears
    and delivers them out of all their troubles.
18 The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
    and saves the crushed in spirit.

19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
    but the Lord delivers him out of them all.
20 He keeps all his bones;
    not one of them is broken.
21 Affliction will slay the wicked,
    and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
22 The Lord redeems the life of his servants;
    none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.

amen. :)

 

A Poor Gospel July 30, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 3:31 pm

There is a big difference between preaching the gospel to the poor and preaching a poor gospel! Here are 7 signs of a poor gospel;

1- A poor gospel identifies with people’s pain but has no power to deliver them from it. 

2- A poor gospel loves the sinner but can’t transform them into a saint.

3- A poor gospel has compassion for sick but has no gift to heal them.

4- A poor gospel loves heaven but can’t bring it to earth. 

5- A poor gospel embraces humility but resists being exalted at the proper time. 

6- A poor gospel loves generosity but doesn’t understand the principle of reciprocity. 

7- A poor gospel embraces the cross but resists the resurrection life it provides to live powerfully. 

The poor gospel isn’t the gospel Jesus preached! He preached the GOOD NEWS of the kingdom where nothing is impossible with God! Do I believe in a prosperity gospel? You bet…it is the only gospel that has the power to transform us into the image of Jesus and destroy the works of the devil.

 

Father & Son’s $100 per hour July 26, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 1:55 pm
–From ML’s FB–
 
Simple story, meaningful reminder. 

SON: “Daddy, may I ask you a question?”
DAD: “Yeah sure, what is it?”
SON: “Daddy, how much do you make an hour?”
DAD: “That’s none of your business. Why do you ask such a thing?”
SON: “I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?”
DAD: “If you must know, I make $100 an hour.”
SON: “Oh! (With his head down).
SON: “Daddy, may I please borrow $50?”
The father was furious.
DAD: “If the only reason you asked that is so you can borrow some money to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room and go to bed. Think about why you are being so selfish. I work hard everyday for such this childish behavior.”

The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door.
The man sat down and started to get even angrier about the little boy’s questions. How dare he ask such questions only to get some money?
After about an hour or so, the man had calmed down, and started to think:
Maybe there was something he really needed to buy with that $ 50 and he really didn’t ask for money very often. The man went to the door of the little boy’s room and opened the door.

DAD: “Are you asleep, son?”

SON: “No daddy, I’m awake”.
DAD: “I’ve been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier. It’s been a long day and I took out my aggravation on you. Here’s the $50 you asked for.”

The little boy sat straight up, smiling.
SON: “Oh, thank you daddy!”
Then, reaching under his pillow he pulled out some crumpled up bills. The man saw that the boy already had money, started to get angry again. The little boy slowly counted out his money, and then looked up at his father.

DAD: “Why do you want more money if you already have some?”

SON: “Because I didn’t have enough, but now I do.

“Daddy, I have $100 now. Can I buy an hour of your time? Please come home early tomorrow. I would like to have dinner with you.”
The father was crushed. He put his arms around his little son, and he begged for his forgiveness. It’s just a short reminder to all of you working so hard in life. We should not let time slip through our fingers without having spent some time with those who really matter to us, those close to our hearts. Do remember to share that $100 worth of your time with someone you love? If we die tomorrow, the company that we are working for could easily replace us in a matter of days. But the family and friends we leave behind will feel the loss for the rest of their lives. And come to think of it, we pour ourselves more into work than to our family.

Some things are more important.

 

 

Screwtape Letters Analysis

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 2:37 am

Diabolical Ventriloquism: A 1-Sentence Summary of Each of Screwtape’s Letters

Andy Naselli —  July 25, 2013 — Leave a comment

In The Screwtape Letters, C. S. Lewis masterfully “teaches in reverse” by wryly using demonic points of view to enforce a biblical one. He calls it “diabolical ventriloquism.” Here is a one-sentence summary of each of Screwtape’s thirty-one letters that advise Wormwood how to tempt his “patient” (who becomes a Christian between letters one and two):

  1. Make him preoccupied with ordinary, “real” life—not arguments or science.
  2. Make him disillusioned with the church by highlighting people he self-righteously thinks are strange or hypocritical.
  3. Annoy him with “daily pinpricks” from his mother.
  4. Keep him from seriously intending to pray at all, and if that fails, subtly misdirect his focus to himself or an object rather than a Person
  5. Don’t hope for too much from a war [in this case, World War II] because the Enemy often lets our patients suffer to fortify them and tantalize us.
  6. Capitalize on his uncertainty, divert his attention from the Enemy to himself, and redirect his malice to his everyday neighbors and his benevolence to people he does not know.
  7. Keep him ignorant of your existence, and make him either an extreme patriot or an extreme pacifist who regards his cause as the most important part of Christianity.
  8. Make good use of your patient’s series of troughs and peaks (i.e., “the law of undulation”), and beware that the Enemy relies on the troughs more than the peaks.
  9. Capitalize on trough periods by tempting him with sensual pleasures (especially sex), making him content with his moderated religion, and directly attacking his faith as merely a “phase.”
  10. Convince him to blend in with his new worldly acquaintances.
  11. Understand the four causes of laughter (joy, fun, the joke proper, and flippancy), and shrewdly use jokes and flippancy.
  12. Don’t underestimate the power of “very small sins” because “the safest road to Hell is the gradual one.”
  13. Don’t allow him to experience real pleasures because they are a touchstone of reality.
  14. Make him proud of his humility; use both vainglory and false modesty to keep him from humility’s true end.
  15. Make him live in the future rather than the present.
  16. Encourage church-hopping.
  17. Encourage gluttony through delicacy rather than excess.
  18. Convince him that the only respectable ground for marriage is “being in love.”
  19. Understand that the Enemy does not genuinely love humans (but we don’t know what his real motive is).
  20. Don’t give up if your direct attacks on his chastity fail; try to arrange a desirable marriage.
  21. Convince him to use the pronoun “my” in the fully possessive sense of ownership (e.g., “my time,” “my boots,” “my wife,” and “my God”).
  22. Understand that the Enemy has filled His world full of pleasures and that you must twist them before you can use them.
  23. Encourage him to embrace a “historical Jesus” and to treat Christianity as merely a means to a political end such as social justice.
  24. Confuse him with spiritual pride for being part of an elite set.
  25. Replace “mere Christianity” with “Christianity And” by increasing his horror of “the same old thing” and thus increasing his desire for novelty.
  26. Sow seeds of “unselfishness” during his courtship.
  27. Twist his prayers.
  28. Guard his life so that he grows old because real worldliness takes time.
  29. Defeat his courage, and make him a coward.
  30. Capitalize on his fatigue, and manipulate his emotions with the word “real.”
  31. His end is inexplicable, but we must win in the end.

Screwtape Letters–From my review of C. S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters: First Ever Full-cast Dramatization of the Diabolical Classic (produced by Focus on the Family Radio Theatre). Themelios 34 (2009): 454–55.

P.S. This is one reason that Professor of Defense Against the Dark Arts is actually not a bad title. “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” See Eph 6:10–20.

 

2 Chronicles 16:9

Filed under: Uncategorized — chinabean @ 2:08 am

For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.

 

 
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