Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32)
That was the word that I chose to summarize this year’s Africa Ministry Training Course (AMTC) when each participant was asked to do so at the end of the seminar. This was a record-breaking year for AMTC, bringing over 70 participants from across the globe to London for a weeklong study of biblical doctrines, spiritual cultivation, and RE training.
After a dramatic episode involving God plaguing Pharaoh’s house on account of Abram’s wife, Sarai, Abram and Sarai were basically kicked out of the land of Egypt.
Prior to this taking place, God had called Abram from his own country and promised to give him descendants who would inherit the land of Canaan. Once there, Abram pitched his tent between Bethel and Ai, built an altar to the Lord, and called on His name (Gen 12:8). But when a severe famine hit the land, in a moment of weakness, Abram left God’s promises behind and went down to Egypt. If God had not intervened by sending plagues upon Pharaoh’s house, Abram would have lost his wife Sarai and the hope of having descendants through her—for he had lied about Sarai being his sister.
Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)
How do we share our burdens?
In church, we may be surrounded by brothers and sisters we have known for years, and some perhaps for a lifetime. But how deep are our relationships? How well do we know one another? What do we know about their lives?
While preparing for a J1 class and looking through a closet of old textbooks and activity booklets, I noticed something unusual. A few of the activity books had names written on them, which was strange because we only kept blank versions of the activity books. Upon closer inspection, I realized that the activity book belonged to another sister who was around my age. And sure enough, behind her activity book sat my own J1 activity book – from 10 years ago.
In Psalm 17, David wrote, “I have purposed that my mouth shall not transgress,” (v.3) and “Concerning the works of men, by the word of Your lips, I have kept away from the paths of the destroyer” (v.4). At the conclusion of the psalm, he further wrote:
As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness;
I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.
Where did David get this kind of confidence? Does it mean that David saw himself as perfect and that he demanded God to help him? Continue reading