Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Failure of freedom


Freedom is the liberty to choose. I write in the context of Australia where freedom is a favourite word. I often ask migrants what they like most about Australia – the answer is always the same  - ‘freedom’.

Indeed it is a privilege to have freedom, but why do we have so many laws and regulations and legislation to make society function? It is because of a root problem – the problem is the natural tendency to choose wrong and this leads to disorder and destruction. It is in the fallen nature of humans to choose wrong! (Wrong? Who says it is wrong to be greedy? Who sets the moral standards about lying? Who determines that oppressing others is wrong?)  Following self driven evolution, progressing by survival of the fittest does not help. Humans without a compass are little more than sophisticated animals.  And so it is that Governments without God, seek to establish laws and rules to control human unpredictability.

But bring into the picture a Creator who has moral values and the situation changes. When our conscience is active and God is recognized, laws become less relevant. Add to this the Christian’s companion – the Holy Spirit, and the laws become unnecessary. (as the NT teaches ‘Love does no wrong to anyone, therefore love is the fulfilling of the law’! Romans 13.10 )

Why then do we have the increasing regulation of society?? Because so many are without God and without hope in this world.

John McKee

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Freedom - what is it


Freedom

To millions of people, this is the one word they would love to enjoy! So many governments and religions refuse to give the people true freedom.

In many peoples’ minds, ‘freedom’ is the idea of liberty to choose a good education, freedom to travel, freedom to associate with others, freedom of religion, freedom in marriage, freedom of speech, freedom to choose employment  etc

Others call for freedom to please oneself and let loose the passions and purposes of the natural human nature. Some young people strive for the opportunity to try the pleasures of the world. They want to go fast, try drugs , eat and drink anything, to be free of parental restraints – to do as they please.
Freedom without moral restraint is the recipe for disaster. Freedom without the power to choose right is sure to fail.

I plan to write some articles on this subject, so I invite all my readers to subscribe to the blogsite.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Genuine?


The most important test of reality


In 2 Corinthians, the command is given –
“examine  yourselves to see if your faith is genuine”

Looking for what ?   - to know if Jesus Christ is in you.

Many practise religion, but that is not ‘Christ in you’

In another Bible place it is written “we pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in Him”
It sounds just like the words of the Lord just before He died: “When I am raised to life again, you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I am in you!” (John 14)

John the Apostle wrote; “By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us His Spirit.”  

On our part it is faith in Jesus Christ the LORD.
On God’s part it is the gift of the Holy Spirit that regenerates our spirit to know and love the LORD.
This is the true relationship God intends for everyone.

Do you pass the test  -  if not, repent now of sin and believe the Good news of Jesus Christ coming from heaven, dying for our sins, and risen from the dead, is alive at God’s right hand. According to His promises you can now become a child of God, with a very close relationship with Him through Jesus Christ our Lord.

johnmckee@internode.on.net

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Imaginations, thoughts,............


2 Corinthians 5:10

“Every thought brought into captivity to Christ”


Paul saw himself as a soldier warring against the proud reasoning’s of man, arguments that oppose the truth. The true character of these arguments is described in the expression ‘against God’. It could be applied today to the reasoning of scientists, evolutionists, philosophers and religionists who have no room for God in their scheme of things. The Apostle was in no mood to sign a truce with these. Rather he felt committed to bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. All men’s teachings and speculations must be judged in the light of the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul would not condemn human reasoning as such, but would warn that we must not allow our intellects to be exercised in defiance of the Lord and in disobedience to HIM

W MacDonald (Believers Bible Commentary)

Saturday, October 12, 2019

The Cross of Jesus Christ the Lord


The cross of Christ is an embarrassment to religion – Jewish religion and others. Who would want to follow a Messiah who was defeated and disgraced by crucifixion! It seems illogical to  honour one who was condemned by Jewish and Roman courts. The shame of crucifixion was extreme.

But when we see the situation from God’s perspective, everything changes. Listening to the words of Jesus before He died , and the teaching of His messengers after He rose from death, they all point to God doing something special by the cross.
For example, Jesus is presented as the ‘Lamb of God’ to take away the sins of the world. He spoke of Himself as fulfilling the purpose of the Passover lamb – to protect people from judgement. Paul clearly states that “Christ died for our sins”. This means that the cross of shame really became an alter of sacrifice.  By this means, God chooses to forgive.

More than forgiveness, God sees Jesus Christ dying the death that we should have died. Now God can welcome us back as children in His family. More than that, through the purging of sin, believers are clothed with the righteousness of God and will be presented in heaven without fault, all because “the Son of God loved me and gave Himself for me”   (Galatians 2)

By this work of God, true Christianity is based on what God has done through Christ, not on what we might do for God.

johnmckee@internode.on.net


Sunday, September 29, 2019

So different


A distinctive of Christ

When one surveys the religions of the world, the politics of the world and the business of the world, one thing is common – the promotion of oneself.
Jesus Christ was so different.

·        He never promoted Himself

·        He did not seek His own glory or power

·        He did not deny His claim to being the Son of God, the Messiah but He did tell those He healed, not to tell others

·        He told the followers who discovered who He really was, not to tell anyone

·        When they would make Him a king, He left them

·        His was a life of service, not power and glory by human reckoning

·        It appeared that He was crucified in weakness

·        When He was insulted , He did not retaliate

·        During His final suffering, He did not threaten to get even

·        When risen from the dead, He did not use His power to take revenge

·        At the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens, He is long suffering, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (have the opportunity to be saved)

Soon He will return to earth.
The day of His glory will soon come, and holy vengeance will be executed. But the brilliant hope of the Christian is this – He will appear in glory, to be admired in all those that believe!

I do pray that all who read this page are true believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.

John Mckee

Monday, September 23, 2019

Christianity


Christian Distinctives.

Christianity begins with three fundamentals to existence.

1.      Life.  Most assume life, but no. Human life , chemical life, natural life, is but a minor part of life . Jesus Christ Himself is presented as the source of all life (creator and sustainer), and to a broken world of humans, He is the source of spiritual life. Often this is called eternal life, being participation in the life of God. Being born again, born of the Holy Spirit is a connection with God as children to a Father.

2.    Light.  Everyone claims to know a thing or two – sometimes what they have discovered, sometimes what they have been taught. Moses shed much light on the situation when he brought to the people the law of God. This light exposed the wrong and pointed the people away to a cure outside of themselves. When Jesus came, the light of ‘grace and truth’ pushed back the darkness. The revealing of God in mercy and grace enabled many unworthy people to press into the kingdom of God. The truth lived and taught by Jesus Christ enabled His followers to live on a much higher plane. To follow Him was and is to walk in the light.

3.     Love.  Humanity has always wanted love. Various forms of love have been tried – lustful, family, natural.  Only in God’s love can people know true love. ‘Agape’ love stands unique. It is of divine origin and able to penetrate beyond beauty, beyond worth and beyond offence. It seeks the ultimate good of the one loved.  As a Christian accepts and absorbs this unique love of God, the mind, the attitude, the heart are changed. One is then able to live life rejoicing in God’s love and to live like God.

This then becomes the spring and motive of action. This is true life being lived in the light of God, by the love of God.


JRM

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Bible reading


The response of humans.

I sense the frustration in the life of the Lord Jesus. On one count the people were enthusiastic to hear Him teach – He spoke as one with authority.  But when He did speak truth, the same people began to dissent and disagree.  They enjoyed seeing His miracles, yet when He suggested they were the evidence of His deity, they were willing to stone Him.

I am blessed to meet many people , young and old, who are enthusiastic about having a Bible, but commitment to reading it is another thing. I am aware that it is a large , daunting book with many things hard to be understood, but oh the joy of hearing God speak through its pages when we wait upon Him to make it living to us.

The written Word unveils the Living Word.

Have you read it today?

Maybe some of you would like to share with me, something of what you have recently enjoyed in the holy scriptures.

johnmckee@internode.on.net

Friday, September 13, 2019

The Word

"in the beginning was the WORD"

Jesus Christ is the full and final expression of God. His words were God's words. His life was the truth of God revealed.
"All who are of the truth hear His voice"

Is His voice special to you?
Do you read those words regularly?.
Are you affected in daily living by those words?
Do you quickly obey His voice?

Maybe you don't have a Bible to read those words - send me an email and I will endeavour to give you one in your own language. 


johnmckee@internode.on.net


Saturday, August 17, 2019

This week's verse:
If riches increase, set not your heart upon them... power belongeth unto God. Psalm 62:10,11

Friday, August 9, 2019

Gentile inclusion


Hello to all my dear friends around the world.
 I have been reminded from Zimbabwe that a new article is overdue.- thank you. I have been very busy doing a course in TEASOL – to teach English as a second language. If I was much younger, this skill would enable me to travel many places teaching English, however I shall be content to help the many migrants in Toowoomba.

Now for something I have been enjoying from John 12:

This chapter concludes the public ministry of our Lord. It has some very serious conclusions about the final judgement of all who have rejected Jesus Christ as the Lord from heaven. But the part I find encouraging is the inclusion, by the writer, of the inquiry of the Gentiles to see Jesus. On several occasions John the writer highlights the grace of God embracing the whole world (John 3:16).
Some will remember the chorus
            Jesus loves the little children
            All the children of the world
And so He does.

Gentile philosophy was about triumph by strength of might or argument, but the Lord by contrast says His path to triumph is through humiliation and His death on a cross (Lifted up).
On several occasions the Lord made it clear that “he who humbles himself will be exalted” and most important is for this exaltation to be done by the Father. Glory here and now is very temporary. Honour in the next life will be forever.

May the risen Lord keep you all in His love.

“Even so come Lord Jesus”

John

Sunday, July 7, 2019

The Gospel by John


John writing:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”
“The Word became flesh..................”

John the Apostle identifies his purpose in writing – to convince us that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing we might have life through His Name.

The opening statement focuses on the unusual title of the Lord Jesus – the Word. And right through the gospel , the emphasis is on His Word and Words.
As the Word, He is the full and final expression of the mind of God. As the communicator of God to mankind, He is the Alpha and Omega.
His creation control is seen when, by the command of His lips, water is reconstructed into the best wine!

At the end of chapter three, this statement is made “ for He speaks the words of God”
The man lying sick by the pool was healed by His command – “rise up and walk”
John 5:24 is that powerful promise “whoever hears my words, and believes on Him that sent me has everlasting life ....”
As the narrative continues, the significance of His words develop.
“My sheep hear my voice and they follow Me”
Then a moment of power “Lazarus come forth”

The power, promises, pronouncements of His word reaches a special importance in chapter 12. They will be the measure of judgement against all who do not believe Him!

The references to His words, continues among the disciples. E.g.
“He that has my words and keeps them, he it is that loves Me”
Again in his prayer to the Father “I have given them the words”
How meaningful then, that He should say on the cross “It is finished”

All this becomes so meaningful when we choose to receive Him, to listen to Him, to follow Him, to love Him.

For my Muslim readers, please refer to Sura 3:45

May I encourage all my readers to read through the Gospel of John, watching for the repeated mention of HIS WORDS.


johnmckee@internode.on.net























































Sunday, June 16, 2019

Jesus Christ the LORD


The Glories of our Lord in the Gospel by Luke

Doctor Luke presents much detail surrounding the life of Jesus – external evidence and internal evidence. It would seem as though he interviewed many people and then correlated the biography of Jesus in chronological order. This includes dates, rulers and places that have been ratified by archaeologists and history.

The account of an angel appearing to Mary is most significant. It tells of heaven’s involvement in the appearing of Jesus and the character of the child to be born.
The record of His birth brings in many different persons as witnesses – Angels, Shepherds, Simeon, Anna etc.

Luke records the incident in the Temple when the boy Jesus astounds the doctors of law with His questions.

Again Luke gives much detail about the adult life of Jesus. His baptism,  His temptation in the wilderness by the devil, His visit to Nazareth where he was rejected. He moved to Capernaum, where the people praised Him, but the Lord Jesus moved on to the many villages around the sea of Galilee. Over and again He is presented as the dependant man, who spent much time in prayer to God. His journeys were marked by compassion for the needy. His words brought life and hope to perishing people. He was seen as one who was not obsessed with money, but instead gave much, even Himself for others.

The glorious Names attributed to Him by Gabriel remained ever true, but  His claim to be the Messiah was vindicated by His humble service to God and mankind. Miracles He did for others. Recovering the lost was His priority.

In His connections with His disciples He was both demanding and compassionate. Taking up the cross to follow Him was fundamental, and yet as He understood how fickle they could be, He showed love and forgiveness.

Luke takes us deep into the holy suffering of His sensitive soul as in the garden of Gethsemane  where He prays in agony. The perfect man (the last Adam), is seen to understand the pain of rejection and crucifixion. The record of the cross is graphic and the grief real.

The end – a man who did not fail,  now raised up from death to be seated at God’s right hand, honoured at the highest place in heaven.

Read the account of Luke for yourself. If you have no Bible, send me an email - I have spares

johnmckee@internode.on.net


Friday, June 14, 2019

Must

You MUST be born again (born from above) 
                                   John 3.7

Even so MUST the Son of Man be lifted up  (on a cross)
                                      John 3.14

He MUST increase, but I MUST decrease  (The Lord preeminent )
                                           John 3.30

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Reading the Bible


John Wesley, who here makes six key practical points:

If you desire to read the Scriptures in such a manner as may most effectually answer this end, would it not be advisable,
(1) To set apart a little time, if you can, every morning and evening for that purpose?
(2) At each time, if you have leisure, to read a chapter out of the Old and one out of the New Testament; if you cannot do this, to take a single chapter, or a part of one?
(3) To read this with a single eye, to know the whole will of God, and a fixed resolution to do it?
In order to know His will, you should,
(4) Have a constant eye to the analogy of faith, the connexion and harmony there is between those grand, fundamental doctrines, original sin, justification by faith, the new birth, inward and outward holiness;
(5) Serious and earnest prayer should be constantly used before we consult the oracles of God; seeing ‘Scripture can only be understood through the same Spirit whereby it was given.’ Our reading should likewise be closed with prayer, that what we read may be written on our hearts;
(6) It might also be of use, if, while we read, we were frequently to pause, and examine ourselves by what we read, both with regard to our hearts and lives….
And whatever light you then receive should be used to the uttermost, and that immediately. Let there be no delay. Whatever you resolve begin to execute the first moment you can. So shall you find this word to be indeed the power of God unto present and eternal salvation.

Monday, May 6, 2019

The Servant of the LORD


Mark’s biography of Jesus

The writer begins with the greatest glory of Jesus :-
“The Son of God”    
 -   In this  title lies the greatest expression of God represented in the person of the Son. No greater glory is seen in Jesus. This is the one who could look up into heaven and say “Father... the glory that I had with you before the world began.....” (John 17).

But from this point, Mark’s gospel describes the very active servant of Jehovah. In chapter one He is the servant promised in the Old Testament. Then He is the servant identified with a sinning people by baptism (He did no sin, but gave His life as a ransom for sinners). At this beginning His voice is clear – “The kingdom of God is at hand, repent and believe the Gospel.”
As the servant of the Lord moves forward,  many wondered at His miracles.

 Perhaps his greater glory lay in this – He did not claim or seek glory for Himself. Proud humans claim the glory of success for themselves, but not the Lord Jesus. Mark, the failing servant, highlights the frequent calls by the Lord to sacrificial service.

For example  “What shall it profit a man if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul?” (8:6)
“If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.”
This humility was exemplified in the Lord Himself:
“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

In one sense there was good reason to question whether He was the Messiah – no human glory, no human credentials, no army etc, Yet His claim to be the Messiah, the Son of God was so clear :
Mark 14:62  “I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven”

Wherein was the problem – they knew not the scriptures (eg Isaiah 53) nor the power and purpose of God.

 In true form to the ‘Servant gospel’, it concludes thus – “ He was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God.” (16:19)
Well did the prophet say “Behold My servant”  (Isaiah 42)

Read it for yourself and discover the glories if the Servant King.

johnmckee@internode.on.net

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