I have an old fashioned faith. I believe that the Bible is the sole authority in understanding and knowing God, the only infallible guide that teaches man how to be saved through the saving death of Jesus at the cross and His resurrection. I sing because I know I have been saved and that not by works. I sing, not because the melody suits present day tunes, modes and ambiences, but I sing because I am a sinner who has been forgiven. I rejoice at this thought so my song is one of rejoicing, even as it is also that of pain, knowing that countless many others are in need of this same rejoicing. I do not seek to promote a sense of euphoria by showing human wisdom and feigning that God will speak to me as more privileged than the next saved man beside me.
My faith is old fashioned. I remember my fathers before me, who endured the nails and spikes like what my Savior endured, the lions and the crosses, the fire, the storms that engulfed them for their stand of this old fashioned faith. I do not seek adulation or to adulate performance, whether it be in the name of this faith, by which many have forgotten how much tribulation and trials must we endure to make us richer in the maturity of this old fashioned faith.
I am an old fashioned Christian, and looking at a fashion, I can say that not even the best wardrobers this world can offer, can promote my growth and that of my fellow believers in the Word and never be a stumblingblock on the faith of the young ones. I have my liberties, but my love is as old-fashioned as my faith. I seek to hear the Bible preached at the pulpit and not science, fiction nor opinion. I seek the truth of God and Him speaking through His Word rather than the dreams and aspirations of human wisdom.
I look forward to my Fashion Designer, who crafted my old fashioned faith, who clothed the most magnificent lilies of the valley and who has fashioned me a new, blessed and incorruptible body, which none of this world’s best fashions can ever match, or is even one wit capable, to clothe.
I would rather serve in the lowliest church of almost empty pews, preach the Word with nothing to expect in return, than to dwell in the tents of the proud where error is ripe and where outreach is trumpeted by the numbers and supplanted by fellowship.
I praise and thank the Lord God, for enabling me to almost finish yet another translation of the “Guide”, a follow-up simplified bible study material designed to help the young believer in Christ start his new life in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17, 1 Pet. 2:2).
The Guide was first written in English after going through a major revision and some minor ones, and was translated into Tagalog (ang “Gabay”) and Indonesian Bahasa (“Panduan”) and now into Visayan / Cebuano (ang “Giya”). All praise to the Lord God of hosts, in Jesus Christ.
The Guide was first used as a follow-up BS material with the Grovelane Bible Studies in Singapore, under Singapore Bible Baptist Church of which Rev. Davy Sim is a long time Pastor and Mentor.
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Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, was not about to succeed the kingship of Israel. Jeroboam, a long time foe of Solomon, came back from exile in Egypt upon learning of the death of Solomon. And he had other plans. So when Rehoboam went to Sechem to claim his kingship, Jeroboam stirred the people to complain to Rehoboam about the grievous yoke Solomon laid upon the people. But his was to create trouble.
When Rehoboam consulted his advisers, there were two groups he asked – the elders (or the ancients) and the young ones (his contemporaries). And he listened to the latter one who advised him to tell Israel even more grievous words which would only sow more trouble.
And so when Rehoboam dropped his grievous message, the result is now lasting. Israel would be divided into 2 kingdoms – the North (after Jeroboam) and the South (after Rehoboam).
The Lord God, in His sovereignty, allowed these to happen to Israel. One may ask why, but the best answer can be found in what can be seen today – after the Babylonian captivity, the Roman rule, and other sufferings Israel did suffer – God purges His people. And if He purged His own people, who are we to complain when He purges us?
Yet in retrospect, I still wonder, what if Rehoboam listened to the wisdom of the ancients? Perhaps Israel would still be divided but that could have happened at a much later time. Nevertheless, what has been done is done and we can only pray for the peace and salvation of Israel.
In this time, months before the election, one can see a rampage of endorsements jamming up your social media site. For the Christian, the conduct ought to be that of a detached observer, being careful not endorse someone even to friends as a matter of courtesy. As individuals, we must have our own reasons why we prefer a certain candidate over the other. And this may run in conflict with our brother or sister in Christ and may even offend him. Yes, this is true, as I myself find a candidate who is aggressively endorsed by many and yet whom I believe to have studied sufficiently to not deserve, for good biblical reasons, to be president. If I endorse someone also, whom I believe is the least evil (everyone indeed has a negative trait, follows with Rom. 3:10) I am sure that someone will get offended or worried why I, his brother do not think as he thinks. But we all brothers in Christ but we differ in some aspects in our beliefs, especially in this case. There may be a lot of subjectivity involved as well.
So I think a proper conduct is to a) search and research the credentials of each candidate properly and b)pray for the right candidate to win as according to God’s plan because He is Sovereign. I believe it is right NOT to endorse a candidate, especially in social media.
One can just imagine how one would feel if our endorsed candidate do not win. So let us save all of that and just pray. There is already a lot of propaganda going our way, left, right, front, back. Let us turn to God, for He alone is our ultimate hope.
It is of paramount importance that pastors and teachers study hard, review, seek, pray hard and meditate with all humility and thoroughness any Bible doctrine before teaching it. If this requires even studying dissenting opinion, this must also be done as this like refining the doctrines that we choose to believe.
If one has to trace the history of doctrines, compare opinions from different authors and commentaries before finally DECIDING which doctrine to follow, so must we do it.
There are doctrines which require the urgent attention for there is no certainty in life. So the doctrine of salvation must be the first and foremost of all doctrines, one must search hard and finally decide to follow. One must not leave the doctrine of salvation to chance.
The doctrines on spiritually must be studied next and only then should the deeper doctrines be studied exhaustively.
There is no shortcut. Remember, the truth can be found if we search for it with all our heart and the only true Teacher is the Word of God, studied through and through, not selectively, nor out of context, nor biased. If it hurts so must we accept it because it is only for our own eternal good. What is the use of flattery when it lasts not even for half a lifetime?
So this chapter starts with Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, succeeding him as king after his death. But Jeroboam, one of Solomon’s mighty men, who rebelled against him and was in exile in Egypt, heard of Rehoboam’s ascent to the throne, he returned and stirred the people to rebel against Rehoboam. He called for an easing of the burdens that Solomon used to impose upon the people. Rehoboam asked for two opinions from his advisers to reply the people and he listened to the advice of his young colleagues rather than to the wisdom of the ancients. And thus started the division of the kingdom – Judah and Benjamin under Rehoboam and the rest of Israel under Jeroboam. And since the temple was in Jerusalem, Jeroboam made him instruments or idols of worship – 2 golden calves in 2 strategic locations – in order to prevent the people from going to Jerusalem of Judah, for he feared that the people would be dissuaded to follow Rehoboam. Thus we see the start of the reign of evil with Jeroboam. All of the evil kings of Israel, or the northern kingdom of Israel, under Jeroboam, would soon fall away from the Lord, because of this stumblingblock that Jeroboam made.
Sometimes in our lives when we are insecure of our position, sometimes in the church, we make programs or activities to make a strong hold of or to enhance that position. I have seen some who would even add that these are “musts” for Christians to do, making it a legal requirement for the Christian life which is supposed to be anchored on grace. Sometimes we honestly believe that we are doing God glory in doing these. Many of these have been framed in our minds through things that we read, books that frame our decisions in life.
It is important that we remain focused with the Word of God as the sole Guide in our life. Some small decisions can lead to disastrous effects down the road. Rehoboam made a mistake, Jeroboam made a bigger one. Let us not let the reign of evil destroy our spiritual future. Because evil can take in the form of something “good” for the “benefit” of all.