úterý, května 08, 2007

Morning by Morning] Romans 8:16

[Morning By Morning - he wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught]

Romans 8:16

Dear friends,

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We continue with the great verse from Romans about being filled with the Holy Spirit:

16The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,

This is a big experience Paul is describing here, so let me list a few of the ways people have reported it.

Thomas Aquinas, the greatest of medieval Christian teachers, had published huge works reasoning from both nature and Scriptures to refute the aggressive Islam of his day and to help sceptical Westerners to believe. And then one day the abstract philosophical writings stopped and he began publishing love songs about God and about the Lord Jesus, lyrics we still sing at communion. When his friends asked him why the big change (it was when he was still at the height of his powers) Thomas said, "I have seen things that have made all my previous writings seem like so much straw."

One day D. L. Moody was preaching and then greeting the people as they left the service. Three elderly women shook his hand and brightly told him they would be praying for him to be filled with the Holy Spirit. He was a talented and committed guy, so this annoyed him for several days. He realized that something was missing however, partly because he got so annoyed. So he went and asked them to keep praying. About a month later he was walking down Wall Street when suddenly the love of God for him became so overwhelming that eventually he had to ask God to stop because he felt he was going to fall flat on the street if God kept loving him so.

As she lay dying, Mrs. Hugh Bryan (we don't know her first name) a person converted by Whitfield, called out, "I see HIm! I see Him! Now I see light!" Then later she called out, "I have seen things that would not be believed if told. Who would die without Christ?"

In fact these testimonies of the visit of the Holy Spirit assuring our own hearts that God loves us as His children fill volumes and keep being shared today. Each visit is a gift and is different. This experience can happen again and again to the same person, but there's no formula for it. Last night I was called to the hospital where a fabulous elderly woman was lying. Her knee had been replaced and wasn't healing well, her dog had died, her cat had died, and she had just broken her arm. She was in such pain she spoke of wanting to go to the Lord. Others had scolded her for wanting to give up and die. I just looked at her and let our eyes gaze easily into each other and said I understood. And then I told her how good it was that she had her hope of being with the Lord. And joy filled us both, and the Holy Spirit assured her that she was the daughter of God and would always be well.

People who experience the visitation of the Holy Spirit don't stay on some high. But they remember the moments when He comes with such tenderness and power. The first time this happened to me I was in a seminary chapel, listening to a sermon I didn't espeically like. My father had died a few years earlier and I had been pondering that a lot with the help of a counsellor. The death had happened when I was 16 and most of the grief had gone unexpressed for about 10 years. The preacher mentioned something about fathers, and suddenly I became just flooded with an awareness of the Father's care and love for me. I've remembered that moment ever since, and I know that it was the reason God called me to the whole seminary experience -- because He had something He wanted to tell me and that is what it took for me to hear Him.

Jesus urges us to ask and seek and knock until God gives us the gift of the Holy Spirit. I think this is why. When the Spirit testifies to us, then our being is warmed by His love, just as the skin on our arm is warmed by the sun coming through the window. He spent His whole life moving with freedom and grace because He was fully opened to Abba Father, and He wants for our hearts to know the same love. So ask and seek and knock, as I still do these thirty five years later.


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--  Jan Dadák    Tel: 	+420 530 334 630 Mobil:	+420 731 576 030  web: 	www.jandadak.com    

neděle, května 06, 2007

Abraham- theme of the Bible study


(c. 1813 BCE - c. 1638 BCE)

According to Jewish tradition, Abraham was born under the name Abram in the city of Ur in Babylonia in the year 1948 from Creation (circa 1800 BCE). He was the son of Terach, an idol merchant, but from his early childhood, he questioned the faith of his father and sought the truth. He came to believe that the entire universe was the work of a single Creator, and he began to teach this belief to others.

Abram tried to convince his father, Terach, of the folly of idol worship. One day, when Abram was left alone to mind the store, he took a hammer and smashed all of the idols except the largest one. He placed the hammer in the hand of the largest idol. When his father returned and asked what happened, Abram said, "The idols got into a fight, and the big one smashed all the other ones." His father said, "Don't be ridiculous. These idols have no life or power. They can't do anything." Abram replied, "Then why do you worship them?"

Eventually, the one true Creator that Abram had worshipped called to him, and made him an offer: if Abram would leave his home and his family, then G-d would make him a great nation and bless him. Abram accepted this offer, and the b'rit (covenant) between G-d and the Jewish people was established. (Gen. 12).

The idea of b'rit is fundamental to traditional Judaism: we have a covenant, a contract, with G-d, which involves rights and obligations on both sides. We have certain obligations to G-d, and G-d has certain obligations to us. The terms of this b'rit became more explicit over time, until the time of the Giving of the Torah. Abram was subjected to ten tests of faith to prove his worthiness for this covenant. Leaving his home is one of these trials.

Abram, raised as a city-dweller, adopted a nomadic lifestyle, traveling through what is now the land of Israel for many years. G-d promised this land to Abram's descendants. Abram is referred to as a Hebrew (Ivri), possibly because he was descended from Eber or possibly because he came from the "other side" (eber) of the Euphrates River.

But Abram was concerned, because he had no children and he was growing old. Abram's beloved wife, Sarai, knew that she was past child-bearing years, so she offered her maidservant, Hagar, as a wife to Abram. This was a common practice in the region at the time. According to tradition, Hagar was a daughter of Pharaoh, given to Abram during his travels in Egypt. She bore Abram a son, Ishmael, who, according to both Muslim and Jewish tradition, is the ancestor of the Arabs. (Gen 16)

When Abram was 100 and Sarai 90, G-d promised Abram a son by Sarai. G-d changed Abram's name to Abraham (father of many), and Sarai's to Sarah (from "my princess" to "princess"). Sarah bore Abraham a son, Isaac (in Hebrew, Yitzchak), a name derived from the word "laughter," expressing Abraham's joy at having a son in his old age. (Gen 17-18). Isaac was the ancestor of the Jewish people.

[Abraham died at the age of 175.]

Source: Judaism 101.
--  Jan Dadák    Tel:  +420 530 334 630 Mobil: +420 731 576 030  web:  www.jandadak.com    

pátek, května 04, 2007

Today`s quote:

There is no difficulty that enough love will not conquer; no disease that enough love will not heal; no door that enough love will not open; no gulf that enough love will not bridge; no wall that enough love will not throw down, no sin that enough love will not redeem.

Emmet Fox

--  Jan Dadák    Tel: 	+420 530 334 630 Mobil:	+420 731 576 030  web: 	www.jandadak.com