Thursday, December 31, 2020

Question: How does God keep us alive?

 

How does God keep us alive?

What a wonderful machine the human body is! Well it is not a machine but rather an organism. So wonderful that you can feed it carrots and this is converted into superfast electrical signals to store information (vast amounts of it) in a guey thing called brain, which in turn controls the hands to put more food into the mouth. Then the stomach asks for minerals and fibre and sugar and vitamins. Some how along with the intestinal tube, it sorts out the useful elements and discharges the waste. Of course transporting the vital molecules to the various working parts is done automatically through the blood stream so that the body cells grow, no, multiply by dividing!  This amazing cluster of dust molecules is able to see, hear, speak, sing, think, decide, love or hate etc etc etc .

Maybe there is something more than a well organized cluster of dust .

Anyway God seemed to invent something very special, but at the same time something rather frail. If the food fails, or water fails, or any vital component fails, the whole castle crumbles to dust!

Since God invented such a wonderful organism, we do well to care for it well. But beyond all that muscle, nerves, blood and bones, beyond that is mind and feeling, spirit and soul, personality and purpose. It is more important to care for this part of our being than the body. We need to feed our minds with good things, our souls on healthy attitudes, and let God direct our purposes.

 

Jesus said : "I have come that they might have life and have it more abundantly."  John 10

How does God keep us alive? He oversees our wellbeing but leaves many of the choices up to us.

Read   Jude 21

Friday, December 25, 2020

Question - do you want to know God personally?

 

This question from a child surprised me.

The answer is ‘Yes’

 

When the Israelites encountered God at Mt Sinai, they became afraid and asked Moses to communicate with God personally. God’s awesome presence terrified the people.

King David responded differently. He admitted to his sin and need, but went into some place of solitude to wait on the Lord. And the Psalms testify to the value of that experience.

Philip the follower of Jesus was interested to know God the Father – “show us the Father and it is enough for us” 

Jesus said to him  “ ………. Whoever has seen Me has seen the Father”   John 14

Paul the apostle understood God as revealed in Jesus Christ and made it his life ambition :

“That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and may share in His sufferings, becoming like Him in His death.” Philippians 3

 

God still speaks to those who take the time to listen. Thousands have proved this true.  He speaks through the Bible, He speaks through the Holy Spirit, sometimes through nature, and sometimes through other people.

The Lord Jesus Christ said in His prayer:

“This is life eternal, that they know you the only true God and Jesus Christ whom you have sent”      John 17

 

This will be the happy life of believers forever, so let begin now – knowing God personally.


Take time out to seek the Lord - like an hour or more - and get to know Him today.


johnmckee@internode.on.net



Thursday, December 17, 2020

Why did Jesus die for us?

 

A question so important!

For those who go to church, this should be easy to answer, but many have never been taught the reason why- for them I write.

Jesus was born of Mary. According to the angel Gabriel, He was a perfect baby, given the title by the angel as Son of God. At age 30, He visited John the baptizer at the Jordan river. John affirmed the title Son of God, but added another – “The Lamb of God ,” with this explanation – ‘He would take away the sin of the world.’ You can read this in John chapter 1.

       John knew that sin prevented people knowing God, so he got them to confess, admit, repent of their sins. However, John realised that Jesus could set the people free from their sins, change their bad habits and connect them with God.  To do so He must die for our sin (not die like us, for He had no sin)– sin is like a debt we owe to God – someone pays.  Ignoring God, disobeying His commands, upsets God, offends His justice and someone must take the punishment. ( like upsetting the policeman by breaking the law). Living our own selfish way breaks friendship with God and so we need to be reconciled to God.

      John had learned from his boyhood days, that the way back to God was by a lamb dying in his place. John understood that the wages of sin is death, and for that reason he should die. But now a perfect man, like a precious lamb was appointed to die for us – Jesus the Lamb of God.

Jesus Himself told the people that He would give His life as payment for their sins.

Jesus described us as wandering sheep, but He said He would die for the sheep.

The Lord Jesus told His followers it was necessary for Him to suffer on the cross, so that people could turn back to God and be forgiven.

       Peter summed it up so well – 1Perter 3:18

“Jesus Christ suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that He might bring us to God”

 

      SO much more was achieved when Jesus Christ the Lord, died on the cross. Keep reading the New Testament and the Old to discover what God has done and will do through Jesus dying for us.

Just now let us say:

‘My sins deserve eternal death, but Jesus died for me.’

 

Bible references are freely available at johnmckee@internode.on.net

Sunday, December 13, 2020

What is the purpose of life?

 

The purpose of life

I was listening to a debate by two Oxford professors, considering this question – does science explain everything?

The professor of physics, an atheist, indicated that we are nothing more than a well evolved bundle of cells. Life has no meaning , purpose or hope. For him, life beyond this existence is absurd. The professor of mathematics, a Christian, insisted that the universe is so well constructed with its mathematical equations etc, that the evidence points to an intelligent creator.  This means that it was created with a purpose including a purpose for humans. (youtube link available).

On the level of everyday people, is there purpose in rising each day, learning, socialising, suffering, giving, loving, enduring, seeking justice, fulfilling family ?? or is it all meaningless?

Without God and Jesus Christ as Lord, yes all is vanity and meaningless ( check out the frustration of the Bible scientist – Solomon in Ecclesiastes ).

But when we read the narrative of the Bible, all makes sense.

God created: and the wonder, beauty, detail, propagation, of the creation fills our minds with awe and admiration for the one who made all things well.

Sadly the Bible also records the intrusion of rebellion with the devastation that did and does follow.

So what was the original purpose of God for humans?

1         as His representative to rule over the creation.

2         As His special creation to connect with God.

 

Any observing person knows that these purposes seem distant or lost. Yet they remain relevant today. As stewards of the creation, we should care for it – the animals, the vegetation, the environment etc. Not to worship it as mother of all things, but as deigned for life to flourish.

As spirit capable beings, we should rise above the mundane, to connect and worship the one who is greater than all. This is now possible through Jesus Christ our Lord. Then all the other things will have purpose as well.

May I say to the children who asked this question – you do matter, you are special, made just like God, to know God and to love Him forever!

“Seek the Lord while He may be found, call on Him while He is near”  (Isaiah 55)

What is it like to die?

 

This important question about death needs more space, but please read and research  the subject for yourself..

I cannot speak much from experience, although I have been seriously electrocuted. I would not be alive if my wife had not turned the power off. I was locked onto the electrical current and every muscle was contracted. However I did not lose consciousness, but unable to release myself I just looked up, waiting to see the gate of heaven. Even though it was painless, it did damage my brain.

The process of dying can be very painful as the body functions shut down. For some, eg dementure, it is not so much pain as it is the loneliness of being disconnected from family and friends.

I have studied ‘near death experiences’ and the evidence is real that life after death is vivid and real. Peter Fenwick (scientist) surveyed  many NDE’s and concluded that mind separates from brain at death, and consciousness continues in another sphere. One relevant point he discovered was the frequent vivid review of one’s life in that dying experience. ‘My descent into death’ by Howard Storm is interesting.

For many people, the trauma of dying is the fear of the unknown!

This is just where being a Christian makes such a difference. The promises of Jesus Christ look beyond death to life with God and others in a state of happiness. Death is certain but need not be hopeless.  Th Lord Jesus said:

“ I give to them eternal life and they will never perish”  (John 10.27)

 

There are two very joyful things ahead for the believer in Jesus Christ.

1        After death is to be with Christ ‘which is far better’–Philippians 1

 

2        At the return of Jesus Christ, He will raise up His own people to be body, soul and spirit enjoying eternal life with HIM.- John 5

He described the next life as “seeing His glory”! that will be amazing.


Another Bible verse summarizes dying –

“O death where is your sting

    O grave where is your victory……….

How we thank God, who gives us the victory over sin and death through Jesus Christ our Lord.”  1 Corinthians 15

 

For those who reject or ignore Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, - death means fear, trauma, crushing memories, darkness – dying without Christ and without hope.

Turn to God today and by faith in Jesus Christ, have the assurance that all is well for eternity. That’s why He died and rose again.

 

So where is it best to research this subject. Read the book written by someone who knows more than any other – God. The teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ on this subject are extensive and authoritative!

I can provide a copy of my recent study on His teachings on life after death.

johnmckee@internode.on.net

Thursday, December 10, 2020

A question I cannot answer.

 

Another question from year 6 at school – How does God make water?

Well I am not too sure but the following detail from Wickipedia is intriguing. Who or what set up the arrangement?

 

Water is fundamental to photosynthesis and respiration. Photosynthetic cells use the sun's energy to split off water's hydrogen from oxygen.[62] Hydrogen is combined with CO2 (absorbed from air or water) to form glucose and release oxygen.[citation needed] All living cells use such fuels and oxidize the hydrogen and carbon to capture the sun's energy and reform water and CO2 in the process (cellular respiration).

Water is also central to acid-base neutrality and enzyme function. An acid, a hydrogen ion (H+, that is, a proton) donor, can be neutralized by a base, a proton acceptor such as a hydroxide ion (OH) to form water. Water is considered to be neutral, with a pH (the negative log of the hydrogen ion concentration) of 7. Acids have pH values less than 7 while bases have values greater than 7.

 

We can easily follow the watercycle, but maybe someone can let me know how water is made.


John McKee

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Why believe in God?

 

Why do you believe in God? A good question from a 12year old.

This basic question is full of helpful insight.

Last week I was listening to a prominent scientist describe his atheism – his trust in science leaves him without hope, with no meaning to life and moral values based on humans being nothing more than a bundle of cells!

I would like to present 4 reasons to believe in God:

1.      Evidence

2.      History

3.       Experience

4.      Revelation

When I stop to think about it, it is so difficult to not believe in God.

1.    1  The evidence of what I see and hear and touch and know, directs to one very intelligent creator. I love science , and how every discovery leads to more detail and brilliance. The design, the make up, the sustainability of the finely tuned world around us, shout out that a very intelligent mind created something very special out of nothing.

Considering the extreme detail of DNA , to the extreme majesty of the galaxies and so much in between, only deliberate unbelief can say the is no God.

It is thrilling to read of scientists who became Christians because of their work in science. For example – Hugh Ross, F Collins

 

2   History is full of people who have interacted with God. So often the narrative of the Bible is punctuated with God using an unwilling person to achieve an outstanding result. Moses is one example – unwilling to go to Egypt, yet through him God gave the world the ten commandments. That code of conduct has changed the world!

David was an insignificant shepherd, yet we are still singing his songs of trust in God, 3000years later.

Jesus lived in relative obscurity, but because of His teaching, His death and resurrection the whole world has been changed for the better. He claimed to be the Son of God and His resurrection validates that claim. More than 500 people saw Jesus after He rose from death. This detail of history brings hope now and forever.

Why did William Wilberforce persist in seeking to abolish slavery? – because God was working in him.

History records God working miracles, God healing sick people, God appearing in visions and dreams etc.

 

3    Many, many people have experienced God in their lives. Perhaps I will give a little of my experience of God. As a boy, God appeared to me in an unusual, yet visible way – I was afraid. He often spoke to my conscience , that I needed to be saved. Sometimes the words of the Bible came to me like God’s voice. When I gave up trying to please God, and trusted Jesus as my Lord and Saviour, I experienced a peace that seemed supernatural.

God has so often kept me, heard my requests, that I can only praise Him – not myself or others!

God becomes so real when I take time out to listen to Him. Maybe through something in nature, or what someone else may say, but usually through something from the Bible – I know that God is very near.

And that is what I want for every reader today.

 

4   Revelation.- the Bible

History records many people having spiritual experiences. Most religions have founders who had spiritual inspiration. It is interesting, yet disappointing to study the origin of religions.

The record of the Bible is sad reading – humans so blest, yet turning away from God, only to be destroyed in their own foolishness. But in spite of this ‘warts and all’ record, God reveals Himself  deliberately and with distinct effect.

Initially God chose to ‘commune’ (communicate, reveal) with Adam in the garden.

The God of glory appeared to Abraham. This revelation changed a family and still affects the world today.

Moses was educated in Egypt, but the revelation of the ‘code of conduct’ given to Israel was ‘something out of this world’ – it was God revealing Himself.

Isaiah the prophet, along with many others communicated the revelation of God. This included denouncing wrong, but better still was God revealing the anticipated Messiah, the Christ. Daniel , by angelic appearances, was able to predict world events.

 

Finally, Jesus claimed to be the full and final revelation of God. No one has been able to prove Him a liar. He spoke God’s words, He did God the Father’s works. He said:” I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except by Me”

He made it possible to know God and be connected to God. This is revelation at its best!

The Holy Spirit continues today to reveal Christ to those that seek Him!

 

Seek Him today and experience the great joy of knowing God for real.


johnmckee@internode.on.net

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

How does God make things

 

How does God make things?

For us to make things we need raw material, we need design or idea, we need tools and skills etc. This is the basic problem with the ‘big bang ‘ theory -where did the material come from to go ‘bang’?

 Who designed the brilliance of the stars? Who wrote the mathematics of a snowflake symmetry? What tools were used to create DNA? How come atoms bind together to form our finely tuned world?

The very fact that we can ask the question, points to the fact that someone, somewhere, somehow, sometime did a lot of designing, calculating, creating, connecting. When I look into the face of a sunflower I am sure He enjoyed artwork. When I consider the workings of a human being, I can only say – How smart is God!

To me it is most intriguing “how “ God made things. With living things He began with a single cell and wrote into that cell a 3 billion bit information code for that living thing to live , grow, reproduce and communicate etc. Then to be special, the growth was not so much by expansion, but rather by division – each cell splits into two cells!

May I request that you consider closely the ‘evolution’ of hen’s egg from a cell, connected with another  cell forms an egg and after three weeks has ‘evolved’ into a living chicken with chirp, heart, brain etc etc etc

How smart is our God!


John McKee

Monday, December 7, 2020

Questions

 

How was God made and where is God? Is He still alive?

One of the names of God is “I am”  -  that means He was not made but has always existed.

If it is true, and the Bible says it is, that God made the earth and the heavens, then He must exist in and outside the universe. He being spirit can be in many places at the same time.

There is a lot of evidence that He is alive today  - alive in peoples lives, appearing to people in visions, holding our planet together, doing wonderful things as He may choose, fulfilling His promises etc

 

Best of all is to get to know Him and test for yourself that He is very much alive.  Turn away from wrong and let Him enter your life through faith in Jesus Christ. The change He can make is proof that He is indeed alive today!


johnmckee@internode.on.net



Time

 

How long has God been alive?

This question from a boy at school is relevant. 

According to the Bible, He has been alive forever and ever. Our small minds have trouble thinking about forever. We cannot understand what is beyond our universe. What will it be like one million years from now? 

The God who inhabits ETERNITY is so much greater than ourselves. So much is beyond our horizon, we do well to accept the way we were made and honour the God who is not limited to time and space.


Thursday, December 3, 2020

Humans

 

Next question: “Why did God want humans?”

When I look around at the violence, selfishness and hateful words, I too sometimes wonder. Yet God does want and loves humans. Humans are the best and smartest of all creation. In their minds they have the ability to know about God, and better, they can know God. In their hearts they can choose to love God and others.

I well know that things have gone wrong, but God still wants humans to live as His friends. He loves all, and He wants to love and enjoy each individual. God still speaks to those who take the time to listen.

The Bible record indicates that God made humans to enjoy friendship with Himself. All the rest of creation was intended to support that purpose.

 

Perhaps someone reading this article has never enjoyed nearness to God. Perhaps your sins are still a barrier to reaching God. Perhaps you are living in the dark.

            ‘There’s a way back to God

            from the dark paths of sin

            There’s a door that is open

and all may go in

At Calvary’s cross is where you begin

When you come as a sinner to Jesus’

 

The Lord Jesus continues to say:

Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in…..”    Revelation 3.20

 

At the heart’s door the Saviour’s knocking

At the heart’s door fast barred by sin

Can’t you hear him

Gently knocking

Draw the bolt and let Him in

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

A good question

 

A new question from the children:

What’s the difference between Catholic, Anglican and Christian?

Very simply – Christian was the name given to all the  followers of Jesus Christ, about 2000 years ago. Catholic (Roman Catholic) became a large church organisation when the Emperor Constantine tried to unite Christians under his rule,  and has continued for 1700 years. About 500 years ago, the king of England decided to break away from the Catholic church and is now called the Anglican church.

‘Christian’ today often represents people who want to believe and live by the Bible without so many church traditions that have developed over the centuries. Catholic is a very organised religion with the Pope as head and a large arrangement of sacraments and rituals for acceptance with God.

Anglican often continues with many of the Catholic rituals, but is usually distinguished as protestant in doctrine. That means acceptance with God is based on faith in Jesus Christ as being sufficient .

The many other churches have many and varied differences in doctrine and practices, but generally believe the fundamental belief in Jesus as the Son of God, once crucified for our sins and raised from death , now exalted at God’s right hand in heaven.

Religion can and will change, but Jesus Christ remains the same yesterday, today and forever. Trust HIM.