Monday, August 31, 2009

The Ministry of a Prophet (Abraham - part III)

By Odon Bulamba (summary only)

4. God’s visit to Abraham’s family

The Bible says once God visited Abraham’s family, and there were three angels but one of them was God Himself. (Genesis 18) Abraham received the visitors but they didn’t come just to visit him. They came to visit the whole family in this far away country. Abraham had his eyes wide open and he knew God was in control of his whole life and because of this, he was able now to live according to God’s will. He would apply humility and he could also welcome visitors. When the angels came, the Bible says Abraham ran, he didn’t walk, he didn’t ask his wife to come and see who is coming, but boldly, he got up and ran to them, he ran to his goal. Many people would walk by, but Abraham didn’t was attracted to them like a magnet with a fridge. He saw something that attracted him and he did not wait, he jumped, and the Bible says that when he came by them, he worshiped. He kneeled down and worshiped with his face to the ground.

How many times are we attracted to God’s presence? How many times does God talk to us but we don’t feel any attraction? Sometimes, we are attracted but we put up obstacles in front of us, so we cannot reach our goal. People can say, “God talked to us today, I understood God’s Word very well.” But they still don’t meet Him, they didn’t submit and moreover, they didn’t see God’s presence in their lives. As a result, there is no change in their lives. How can you say, “I have to humiliate myself before God” if you’ve never seen this God or felt His presence in you? You’ll say, “Odon talks too much. I was taught another way, what he says is not true, I doubt this, this is a new denomination that has started, he just wants to attract us so that we’ll belong to him. The Bible says that at the end time, there will be many false teachers.”

Be careful, my brother and sister. Ask God and He will answer you. Most Christians today are attracted by cold war in Christianity. If you are Baptist, you cannot go to a Pentecostal church, and if your pastor sees you, you must explain why. “Brenda, I saw you going into a Presbyterian church, why did you go there?” If he likes you, he’ll say, “You weren’t at church last Sunday, where were you?” Then you have to explain your program to the pastor.

Jesus Christ is the truth and the truth shall set you free; if you can’t find the truth, ask God, “Is this a good way or not?” I have never studied theology, I don’t know anything, but with God’s glory and grace, I can share what little I have with you because I know that the time is very short and soon the Lord will be back. Most people are on the wide road. They are Christians, but they don’t know where they’re going. I am not here to fight your church or your denomination, it’s just an example.

Abraham was attracted by God and he said, “Lord, here I am!” He knew the Lord was coming to him, he didn’t hesitate, he just went straight to his goal, and the Bible says he invited them to his place. When he got home do you know what happened? What did Abraham tell his servants? He asked the servants to prepare a meal for them. He didn’t ask his visitor’s opinion. “Sylvie, do you want to eat?” In my country, if you ask someone, “Do you want to eat?” It means that the quantity of food you have is insufficient and you try to know whether the person will say no. If the person says no you’ll think ‘yes’. If you have something to give, give it, if you don’t have anything to give then just give some water, that’s enough. If you give a glass of water, you’ll get something. The Bible says in Matthew 10: 42.

And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.

I’m not asking you for chocolate, I’m not asking you for Burger King, just a glass of water is enough and you will be rewarded for that. Abraham said, “Prepare a meal for our guests.” It means that for us, we must have some spiritual food for our guests. It means we must share God’s glory together. Usually, most Christians welcome their visitors with their photo albums and they say, “This is Jamie, he comes from Jamaica and this is his wife with their daughter; they are great friends.” So you are going to lose three hours looking at photos instead of reading the Bible. But the Bible has better photos than your album. Share these photos that are in the Bible. These are spiritual photos, pictures that don’t please the flesh but the spirit. If you don’t have this food, the Bible says just give a glass of water. Jesus Christ is the source of this living water. What did He say to the Samaritan? (John 4) “Give me this water and I’ll give you some living water.” Why don’t you give to your visitors this living water? You have it, but you don’t want to share it with the others.

Once, my brother and me were in a desert and we had a 5 litre container with water in it. To keep it cool, we would put some water outside the container. Drinking normal water is like drinking boiling water, and it is hard to drink. When a friend would come and say, “Give me a drink”, you’ll think, “There’s only enough for me. You have hands; you can also prepare fresh water at your place. When people will come, you’ll hide the ‘fridge’ and say, “We’ll keep our water to ourselves.”

Some Christians are like that, they don’t even want to share this water with others, “If I give this spiritual water you will know more and we will be equal spiritually.” Who told you that? Everything Jesus had, He would give it, and when you give, you receive more. If you never give, you never receive. Abraham gave something to eat and you know the story. When Sarah heard that a child will come, she laughed and also her husband laughed, but when people asked him, he said he didn’t laugh. Many times, God rebukes us through His servants, but we always say no. You can pretend you are saying something to Odon, ‘this is my situation’, but when you meet Michael or Oscar you will change your story, you’ll start using conditional, the things you were so sure of, you’ll change them, things that you have promised me, you don’t accomplish them. Most Christians fall into lie to prove they are good Christians, but God’s eyes see everywhere. Even though Sarah hid behind her tent, God’s eyes were on her. Sometimes people come to us and speak about incredible things and we just laugh. Someone can lie to me and I know he is lying. Sometimes, I can know your situation before you come to me to tell me your situation, and when you come to speak, I just listen and sometimes I feel in my heart that something hurts. Why do we belong to two different ‘Gods’? Why do we have two lovers in the same house? On what bed will you lay down, on the bed of lie or Jesus Christ’s bed? And God, one more time showed leniency about Sarah’s story because God is always slow to anger. Sarah didn’t ask for forgiveness, nor did Abraham, but God carried on with them, this is how merciful God is, this is how God loves us, this is how love can tolerate, but how many times we don’t tolerate?


- A prophet of God must run to his/her goal
- A prophet must be attracted to Jesus Christ and remove any barriers
- A prophet must share the Word of God with others
- A prophet must not lie or make cover up stories
- A prophet must show forgiveness and tolerance to others

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Ministery of a Prophet (Abraham - Part II)

By Odon Bulamba (summary only)

3. The spiritual beauty

Remember what Jesus told His mother and brothers, “My brothers and my mother are those with whom I share the Word of God.” People can rubbish you, but because of Jesus Christ, you have accepted that your brothers and sisters, your parents are those with whom you share God’s Word. Because we are all God’s family, we are a holy family. Remember that Jesus came as a second Adam, and remember that Jesus said to Nicodemus, “Which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” So it’s up to us to choose now.

When you are called by God to be a prophet, you must submit and turn your eyes to God.

Abraham left his country and stopped along the way because it was getting dark and he had to spend the night. He thought, “If these people see you with me, Sarah, they will condemn me or even kill me if they know that you are my wife” because the Bible says that Sarah was really beautiful both physically and spiritually.

So where is your spiritual beauty? Most Christians want to be pretty on the outside but inside their hearts, it is a mess. The Bible says that we must have beauty inside to attract our lover who is Jesus Christ. Most young men know how to attract young girls, likewise with young girls with their make up and other things, but they don’t know how to attract Jesus Christ with their spiritual beauty. Sarah had this beauty, not a beauty depending on make-up and not a beauty according to Isaiah 3:16-24.

16 ¶ Moreover the LORD saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet: {wanton...: Heb. deceiving with their eyes} {mincing: or, tripping nicely}
17 Therefore the Lord will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion, and the LORD will discover their secret parts. {discover: Heb. make naked}
18 In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their cauls, and their round tires like the moon, {cauls: or, networks}
19 The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers, {chains: or, sweet balls} {mufflers: or, spangled ornaments}
20 The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings, {tablets: Heb. houses of the soul}
21 The rings, and nose jewels,
22 The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins,
23 The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the vails.
24 And it shall come to pass, that instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; and burning instead of beauty

The verse 24 says that instead of beauty, there will be humiliation. One day, God will humiliate those who wear make-up on the outside but are spiritually ugly. God wants us to have spiritual beauty to please Him and attract Him.

Sarah was in that country and as the people said to the king “Someone beautiful has come” the king asked to have her. God didn’t let the king touch Sarah because God was jealous of Sarah for Sarah’s beauty attracted God too. Sarah’s personality attracted God too and so did Abraham’s personality. It’s like a wife who has two husbands. If one husband sees her with the other husband he will be jealous, a discussion or even a fight might follow while the woman keeps looking quietly; maybe one of them will lose some teeth during the fight because of the woman, because of her beauty, because of the love he has for this woman; and that’s what God did too.

God told the king “Don’t touch Sarah, if you touch Sara, you’ll be in trouble.” How many times has God told Satan “Don’t touch Hayley!” or “Don’t touch Brenda!”? “This is my wife and this is my beloved one!” Do you know how much God is jealous of you? Do you know that God loves you? Each Christian must know that God loves them, and God’s love is really great. If someone loves you, why wouldn’t you love them the same? Why wouldn’t you be faithful to your faithful husband? I cannot say that I love Jesus Christ a lot and I like drinking. I cannot say that I love Jesus Christ and I love lying. I cannot love Jesus Christ and be into sorcery, it’s not possible.

On that day, God did something, because the king humiliated himself and he knew how God loved this woman. He went to Abraham very early in the morning and said “Why did you lie to me, you knew she was your wife but you said she was your sister, why?” It was true that Sarah was Abraham’s sister, but the king was upset because a wife belongs to her husband. God asks us tonight, “What do you want to be called my sister, my wife, my brother or my husband?” Many Christians don’t know exactly where they are up to. When the situation is difficult, they change their version. Instead of admitting they belong to Christ they change their version:

For example, a pastor might not admit he is a pastor while he is with Muslims because he is afraid they will ask him questions that he will not be able to answer. A Christian might deny they are Christian so they can get a job in the pub.

This is what Abraham did! He tried to manage with the situation and he forgot that God was leading him. He forgot that God told him to leave where he was. He also forgot God is more powerful than this king. And that’s what happened the first time. The second time God gave the same test and Abraham made the same mistake. God watched Abraham and saw how much He loved Abraham. He said “Because I chose him, I must therefore fulfil what I have prepared for him.

- A prophet must be spiritually beautiful
- A prophet must belong to God (the wife of God)
- A prophet must not be afraid to admit they belong to God

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Ministery of a Prophet (Abraham - Part I)

By Odon Bulamba (summary only - 8th Dec, 2000)

1. Introduction to the ministery of prophecy

Abraham was someone like you and me, and he also had flesh like you and me. He was born from a mother and father, he had the same blood as you have, and he was also a servant of God like you. Abraham was called by God and he left his country were he use to live, and God said, “I will be with you wherever you go. Even if you have difficult times and problems, I will never leave you. So do not worry because people will talk about you, do not worry about the difficulties you’ll meet on your journey. Do not worry because of the rain that will drench you, and don’t worry about the burning sun and the absence of shade”. Jesus talks about worries too. His people have no right to be worried, and because we are the descendents of Abraham, we must walk as he did. This is an introduction to the ministry of prophecy.

2. Abraham’s call

God told Abraham, “I will bless you and all your descendants, and the name you have ‘Abram’ will be changed into ‘Abraham’.” This means that when God calls a prophet, the very first thing that happens is that the prophet will leave the place were he or she lives, and the prophet will go to a new place where God himself will lead him or her. For example, someone might be in New Zealand and has a prophesy that something that will happen two years later in the USA, and this person has never been to the States. This is how God works in order to move one person from where he or she is to reach another dimension and see things which are far ahead. It means that the prophet must leave his or her place where he or she is spiritually to reach another place. He or she is not allowed to use a map in order to organise his or her itinerary and what he or she needs to do. Only God can lead him or her.

Gen 12:1
1 ¶ Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:

“So you must leave your parents, you must leave your descendants and you will go where I’ll show you.” I think nobody among us can go where he doesn’t know, nobody can say I am going somewhere but I don’t know where I am going. Most people, when they travel, know where they are going, they know they want to go there and do this and that, and they know what their goal is, unless this person is crazy. When a mad person wakes up in the morning; he or she doesn’t know where to go, they leave the house and on their way, they think, “I am going left”, then they can cross the road without taking care of the cars that are driving on it. When they’ve reach the left side, they change their minds and say, “I’m going right.” Everyone on their way will realise that this person is mad because the way they walk shows clearly that they don’t know where they are going.

When God called Abraham, Abraham didn’t discuss, he didn’t say, “ No, I must know where I am going”, but rather he accepted that God would lead him like someone who is mad or crazy. This is a sign of humility; to humiliate yourself 100% and accept that someone leads your life 100%. How many people today accept to humiliate themselves to that point? Even with our children today, we can say to them, “Go left”, and the child will say no, then they say, “Mum and dad, if you insist, I’ll call the police.” So you’ll see that things change, because even our children don’t accept to obey there parents. Those who defend the children’s rights will say, “This is a crime, you cannot tell a child what to do.” But God forced Abraham and the Bible says that Abraham left everything. The Bible doesn’t say that he told his mum and dad that he was going to travel, no, he just left.

How many times are we called by God to leave in order to work for Him but we don’t leave? This is the first sign of a prophet. By faith, Abraham accepted to leave because he knew that this God who talked to him was a powerful God. Amen.

So a prophet is someone who first of all must have faith.

Secondly, this person must know that they are not allowed to live in the physical and material world but must reach a certain spiritual depth. So for example, any time God reveals Steve a situation that is happening in France, he will leave everything that he is doing to go and see what is happening in France. His wife Marcia doesn’t have the right to know what Steve saw, his children don’t have the right to know what happened, unless God asks him to tell his wife and children. Abraham said, “I must go” and he left. He took his wife Sarah. She didn’t ask, “Where are you going, my husband?” but she followed him with submission.

Prophets’ wives, open widely your ears and your eyes to see where God leads you with your husband the prophet. Your only mission is to listen to God’s message, you cannot say to your husband, “It’s my right to go there with you because we are one, I must also know everything you know, I must know God’s revelations too and all God tells you. You are one body physically, but spiritually you might not be one.

- A prophet of God must not worry but trust in God
- A prophet of God must be lead 100% by God in humility
- A prophet of God must have faith
- A prophet of God must not reveal to others where they are going (unless instructed by God)

For the full message please email:

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


By Michael Bahjejian

Mat 16:1-4
1 ¶ Then the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and testing Him asked that He would show them a sign from heaven.
2 He answered and said to them, "When it is evening you say, `It will be fair weather, for the sky is red';
3 "and in the morning, `It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.' Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times.
4 "A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah." And He left them and departed.

Here is a simple and well known passage in Matthew that seems quite easy to understand, but do we really understand what it means? Could we for example answer some of the following questions: What is the sign of Jonah? Why did the Pharisees and Sadducees want to test Jesus? Why didn’t Jesus show them a sign from heaven, and why did they especially ask for a sign from heaven?

 The sign of Jonah

As you know, many amazing things happened in the book of Jonah (between Obadiah and Micah, it is not the easiest book to find). Which one from these amazing things do you think is the sign of Jonah? Is it the fish that swallowed Jonas in the middle of the stormy sea, spit him on the shore 3 days later, and by doing so saved his life? Is it Jonah's prayer of repentance and supplication in the belly of the fish? Is it his complete change of mind when he decided to go to Nineveh and warn their inhabitants of its coming destruction? Is it the rapid growth of the vine, followed by its immediate withering the next day? Is it Nineveh’s repentance of the entire population of Nineveh with its 120 000 people who were so far from knowing what’s good and what’s wrong that the Bible says that they couldn’t tell their right hand from their left? Or is it the whole book or history of Jonah?

If we consider that the definition of a sign is ‘a perceptible indication of something not immediately apparent’, maybe that the sign of Jonah is none of all these things but just the manifestation of God’s goodness, something that deeply saddened Jonah who was looking for justice, a pre-view of God’s promise of salvation for the whole fallen world.

Mat 12:38-40 sheds some light on this passage.
38 ¶ Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, "Teacher, we want to see a sign from You."
39 But He answered and said to them, "An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.
40 "For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

Jesus makes it clear there that the sign of Jonas’ is a prophecy about Jesus’death and the three days He spent in Hades before His resurrection. And in Luk 11:29-30, Jesus calls Himself ‘a sign to his generation’, as Jonah was a sign for his one.

29 ¶ And while the crowds were thickly gathered together, He began to say, "This is an evil generation. It seeks a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah the prophet.
30 "For as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so also the Son of Man will be to this generation.

 Was it wrong to ask for a sign?

Obviously, Jesus was not happy with the request.

Mark 8:12 goes further:
The Pharisees came and began to argue with him, seeking from him a sign from heaven, to test him. And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and said, “Why does this generation seek for a sign? Truly, I say to you, no sign shall be given to this generation.” And he left them, and getting into the boat again he departed to the other side.

This Gospel doesn’t even mention the sign of Jonah. Jesus leaves without an answer. The Pharisees might have found it rude and could have accused Jesus of being in a bad mood. But we know that Jesus is not moody nor rude but that He knows the thoughts of the heart and the hidden intents of people; in that case, the Pharisees were not interested at anything else than accusing Him and in his wisdom, Jesus knew that it was better to keep silent. But there was more to all of this.

 A sign from heaven

Imagine someone asking for something he or her has already been given. People would say, “Open your eyes, you’ve already got it!” And if they insist, wouldn’t they become annoyed with this person? Jesus was the sign already given by God to that generation and the many miracles that occur in chapter 14 and 15 of the book of Matthew attest that, with the many healings that occur, as well as both the multiplication of the food with the 5000 men and the 4000 men. What were they still looking for it? And why did they ask for a sign from heaven? Obviously, they had missed all these signs that made people believe in Him, believe in who He was saying He was. They had not rejoiced with the healed people or with the well fed crowd. And also, you just don’t ask for a sign, it is rude! You wait for it and when it’s there, it is the time to open your eyes, not to close them. It would be like asking someone if she or he is a Christian after that person has performed a miracle in the name of Jesus. Wouldn’t it be weird to answer yes or no? And that‘s exactly what the Pharisees and the Sadducees did. No wonder why Jesus compared them to a blind leading a blind. They didn’t want to see the signs and the sign they were asking for was Jesus himself. When Jesus refers them to the sign of Jonas, He meant, “If you’ve missed ‘the sign’, then go to the previous one!”

There is a sign from heaven mentioned in 1Thes 4:16, the Lord himself descending from heaven with a cry of command, with the archangel’s call, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. However, this was not yet the time for this to happen, and it hasn’t happened yet, 2000 years after Jesus death and resurrection. This sign is for another time, another dispensation. Jesus had to suffer and to die first and be resurrected of the third day. There was an agonising hour to go through, a cup of sorrow to drink, a crown of thorn to wear, a door to go through to be called the good shepherd and not a thief and a robber. When Satan tempted Jesus after his fast or through Peter’s human advice later, he wanted to lead Jesus away from his purpose of going through the cross. Jesus had already rebuked them and here again, this wicked generation asks for a sign coming from heaven, a sign that is supposed to make them see and believe without the need to have faith. This generation was wicked because they didn’t understand the need for salvation and God’s plan of redemption. God‘s plan was, “If you believe, you’ll be saved’. Faith came first.

Today, we are the signs for this generation; the glory of God veiled for still a little time in a perishable body. Like Jesus, who came into the flesh and was born in a stable from a poor family, our Christian lives are lived in humility and sometimes humiliation but always by faith. The Pharisees and the Sadducees were expecting a Messiah dressed in heavenly glory, a Messiah who would have delivered them from the Roman occupation and oppression, a Messiah who wouldn’t have challenged their unbelief and exposed their wickedness. They didn’t want to deal with their sin problem that was also, by the way, the reason for their political problems because hey thought they were healthy and didn’t need a saviour.

 Pharisees and Sadducees

Sadducees and Pharisees who requested the sign from heaven had never stopped testing and questioning Jesus. For example, they accused him of blasphemy when He forgave the sins of the paralytic, accused him of violating the Sabbath when He healed the dry hand, tested Him on the legitimacy of the tax to Caesar, and kept questioning Him on many topics. They wanted to find a reason to accuse him and eventually to kill him. The more they did so, the more numerous were the layers that hardened their hearts to the point that Jesus started speaking in parables to avoid being accused all the time. When Jesus was challenged, he would always send his accusers back to their hearts: “If one of you has a son or an ox that falls into a well on the Sabbath day, will you not immediately pull him out? If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” And they had nothing to say. (Luke 14 5) The wrong understanding and use of the Law had destroyed the life itself in those who were supposed to teach it to the point that they did not recognise their God when Emmanuel, ‘God is with us’ came to live in their midst.

 To be religious versus to be holy

In Mat 15:3-9, Jesus touches the heart of the problem of the religious authorities when He accuses the Pharisees and scribes to void the word of God that is holy for the sake of their tradition.

Jesus presents the word of God, ‘Honour your father and mother’ and ‘Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death’. It is the word of God and it is a command. The tradition has changed it in “If a man says to his father or mother, ‘whatever help you might otherwise have received from me is a gift devoted to God’, he is not to ‘honour his father’ with it.”

Jesus means ‘Here is your tradition. It is not the word of God anymore. You’ve changed it. You’ve changed it because you are hypocrites. You pretend to honour me with your lips, but your hearts are far from me.’

What are the differences between these 2 commandments?

In the first one, the real word of God, the word God is not mentioned. It is like with the book of Esther where the word ‘God’ is never mentioned. However, it is mentioned in what Jesus calls a tradition. They added the word God to God’s commandment.

Also, the first one involves people, love and respect for people. The second one involves people and God, but it lacks love and respect for people. It looks more holy and religious but God’s aim is betrayed by it. Hypocrites look religious, but in their hearts, hypocrisy reigns when love is absent. God never dissociates the love for God and the love for human being, in that case, parents. For Him, the love for your neighbour has an equal value than the love for God as He considers the two commands as similar. When tested again about the greatest commandment in the Law, Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind,’ this is the first and the greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself,’ All the Law and the prophets hang on these two commandments.” Mat 22:37-40.

 Conclusion

As Jonah was a sign for his generation and Jesus a sign for his generation, we are also today’s sign for our generation. And as we have been reminded this week in a 2 day course on Islam Sylvie and I attended, we are the only visible Bibles people around us can read. Whatever we do, whatever we are, let us be a light in this world of darkness, a sign that shows clearly to people the right direction towards the One who is the way, the truth and the life.

May God bless you.

Monday, August 24, 2009


Genesis 9:7
It’s a command to be fruitful, not a suggestion. It is written in the imperative form meaning we MUST be fruitful – there is no choice.

But HOW? How do I be fruitful? In order to answer this, I thought deeply about how a tree is fruitful and what the benefit of fruit is.

In order for a tree to be fruitful it requires sunlight, pruning, space, soil, watering, fertiliser, weeding, the flowers need to be fertilised (usually through bees or other insects through spreading the pollen), leaves for photosynthesis.

Sunlight: Jesus Himself is the morning star (Rev 22:16) and so we cannot be fruitful unless Jesus is our Saviour and Jesus Himself is living in us. Only true Christians can be fruitful (not fake Christians, or religious Christians).

Pruning: (John 15:2) we have to remove all our sin in order to be fruitful. For example, if you don’t prune all the dead flowers from roses, they won’t grow anymore flowers and you can actually kill the whole plant. Diseases also need to be cut out of the plant or it will die. We need to cut out all the bad thoughts, desires, characteristics, behaviour, etc or we too can die spiritually or not bear any fruit.

Water: the Word of God (Ephesians 5:26). We can’t be fruitful without reading, or meditating or practising the Word of God. We need to use it in our own lives and in the lives of others, to pray for others. We need to read it daily in the same way that plants need to be watered regularly. You should never leave a plant without watering it for ages and then suddenly shock it with water, they will die. In the same way, we should not go for days without reading the Bible and then suddenly read for hours. It is much more beneficial to read everyday a little bit, just like watering plants.

Fertiliser: food for the plant, it sustains the plant and makes it grow and makes it healthy and fruitful. What makes a Christian grow, what sustains us and makes us healthy, what feeds our soul? The Word of God made alive by the Holy Spirit. (1 Kings 17:6, the meat represents the word of God with life in it). The Holy Spirit convicts us and helps us to be made healthy and fruitful.

Weeding: removal of things around the plant that would block sunlight or take the plants food or water or space. We need to remove those things around us that distract us, or are harmful to us or choke us such as the worries of this world. This could be spending too much time on the internet or watching t.v., or being with friends who are a temptation or sleeping too much or eating too much. Whatever it is that keeps us away from God or His Word or following His will or whatever it is that keeps us sinning, we need to remove that – weed it. The Bible says that if your eye causes you to sin....remove it (Mathew 18:9). For me it’s stress, I like to do at least three things at once. Usually I cook dinner, make lunches, and watch the news all at the same time but if someone asks me a question during that, I’ll be a bit stressed and I might answer rudely and sin. Therefore, I have to remove that habit and just concentrate on one thing at a time.

Space: plants require enough space to grow. You can’t grow potatoes next to beans, the potatoes suck up all the nutrients and the beans are unfruitful (I know, I’ve done it). We also need our space. We need to take time away as Jesus (Mathew 14:23) did to pray, to meditate, to reflect, it’s very important. Everybody needs time to be with God on their own and this is an extremely important part of being fruitful and should not be neglected.

Soil: must be good soil. Soil that is the right amount of sand = salt = be salt of the earth (Mathew 5:13) = tasty to the world = attractive. Soil has to be that nice dark, crumbly soil that allows water to drain in and it soaks up the water and keeps it so the plant can use it as it needs. We need to be like that, soaking up the Word of God and using it daily and if there is ever a drought (hard times) we can draw on that Word of God to get us through difficult times. Good soil (Mark 4:20) hears the Word of God and accepts it and this is how we bear fruit. Our bodies came from the soil and so being fruitful requires our bodies to be involved. Our bodies must have self-control and accept to live according to the Word of God in order to bear fruit.

Flower: fruit begins with a flower. We can’t eat the flower but it’s very important. Without the flower, the fruit won’t be able to grow and it’s the flower that attracts insects which fertilise it and the fruit grows. It’s our actions that attract others to us and from our actions people will see the fruit and as we practise daily to live according to the Word of God, we will bear fruit. A flower starts our as something small that is inedible and turns into something really great and that is the same with our actions. E.g. an encouraging word can be like a flower and from that word fruit is produced. E.g. doing an act of kindness is the flower that will one day produce the fruit of kindness. E.g. holding your tongue is the flower that will one day produce the fruit of self-control. And that fruit multiplies ‘cos it’s not only produced in you but in those around you. When I observe someone doing something great – it pushes me to do that too.

Leaves: leaves are green and the colour green represents life and leaves do produce life for the plant as without them the plant would die. If you cut off all the leaves, the plant can’t survive. They take the sun and convert it into food that course the fruit to grow. The sun = Jesus Himself = Word of God and so we must take the Word of God and convert it into food for our souls, without that, we will die spiritually. There is no point in reading the Word of God like a story, we must meditate on it and apply it to our own lives; without that we won’t produce fruit.

What is the benefit of fruit?Fruit is a general term covering different types, e.g. banana, lemons, oranges, apples. Some fruit look beautiful but taste sour (lemon) or are rotten inside. Some fruit are ugly but taste awesome (uglifruit – we should not neglect the weakest among us) and some fruit look really similar to others but taste quite different (lemon and limes – not Christians are truly Chrisitans).

When God tells us to be fruitful, it’s a general term covering all the fruit and He expects us to bear ALL the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22) not just one or two and therefore we should examine them and find which one(s) are missing in our lives.

Fruit attracts animals to eat them and from this the seeds are dispersed so more trees can grow and produce more fruit. Therefore if we are fruitful people will be attracted to us and they will receive the gospel (seeds) from us and hopefully water too and they will go out and start to spread the gospel and this is how we multiply (Gen 9:7). But fruit that is unattractive will have the opposite effect; fruit of the flesh will never cause multiplication for the glory of God. Birds are not attracted to rotten or sour fruit. Sometimes an animal sees a fruit and it looks good but after tasting it, they don’t forget and never go back. If someone tastes our fruit and it’s sour or rotten or bitter, they won’t come back. When we are jealous, or angry or proud, we are not attractive to anyone much less non-christians and they won’t be interested in the gospel and the gospel does not get multiplied.

Less sugar in the fruit makes it less tasty. Fruit that is not sugary are those that are forced ripened and haven’t spent enough time in the sun. When we don’t spend enough time in the presence of God (sun), reading His Word, meditating, praying etc, we are tasteless and lack the fruit of the Spirit and are therefore less attractive.

Fruit is a sign that the tree is healthy and if you are not producing fruit then check your spiritual health. Are people attracted to you? Are people coming to Christ through you? Are you full of love, joy, peace, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control or are you full of hatred, bitterness, envy, complaining, problems, harshness, anger, impatience or unforgiveness?
The opposite to love is hatred. Are there people who dislike you? Is there anyone in your life that you avoid? If so you have unforgiveness, possibly Do you have negative thoughts about someone/people?

The opposite to joy is complaining. Is everything hard for you? Some people can only complain, there is no joy at all. From the time they get up to the time they go to bed, they just complain, about everything. “you don’t help me” and when you try to help, “your making a mess”. With these people you can’t win. They even complain when you are encouraging them, “thanx for dinner it was awesome”, “oh, yes I started preparing it since 5am and I haven’t rested all day.....”Nobody is attracted to complainers.

Opposite to peace is problems. It’s normal to have problems, everyone has them but those who are full of peace will know how to resolve the problem and bring peace again to the situation. Those who don’t have peace, they will ALWAYS have problems. If you don’t have peace and always have problems, that is a sign there is something wrong. If you have a problem with many people, then the problem is with you and not them. Therefore pray God will fill you with peace and the ability to find solutions through humility. Don’t accept your pride to tell you that you are right and everybody else is wrong.

To be fruitful means to be productive, to produce something through hard work. A tree doesn’t grow without hard work behind it. Someone had to dig the hole, weed, water, prune, and then pick the fruit and even clean the fruit and pack it. It takes work to be fruitful and we don’t have to forget that. If we want to be fruitful and multiply, we need to work hard; reading the Bible, praying, visiting others, going to meetings, fasting, encouraging others, changing our character etc. It’s a work and we don’t have to think God will do it for us, we have to do it ourselves.

By Hayley Boud

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Power of Redemption (Part III)

By Odon Bulamba (summary only)

One day the church will be raised up and will start judging the world. I don’t know if there is a lawyer who doesn’t know the law. I don’t know if there are lawyers who don’t respect the law. So why do lawyers respect the law? Because there are penalties if you don’t and also you will be a hypocrite. If you are a lawyer and you don’t respect the law, you are a hypocrite. If you are a lawyer and you don’t respect the law, you won’t have any client’s coming to you. Even the judge won’t believe you.

We Christians are the lawyers of this earth. Jesus chose us and made us in His image. He gave us the power of redemption to give the gospel to others, to talk to them about the divine law. And people will ask us “What does the law say?” And I say don’t do that, that and that because one day the Judge will judge you. Amen! And if you don’t live according to the law, it’s time to wake up because the Bible speaks about the law. The Bible says He paid the price for you and you have to help others know the law.

Psalm 107:1&2, “Oh, give thanks to the Lord for He is good, For His loving kindness is everlasting, Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary.”

We are the ones whom God has redeemed therefore we must give thanks to God and praise Him. For us who have been saved and know the power of redemption, we must say Halleluiah at each moment. Who has received redemption among us? So if you have received it, you are entitled to say Halleluiah. You have to proclaim it everywhere.

I will give you an example - in the Arabic tribes you will find in a community, 25,000 people called Ahmed. And first names and surnames are all together. And if you call Ahmed 25 people will come. And if you say the surname, all 25 people will say that’s my surname and they are from different families. But there is only one name that God uses - that is redeemed people. That’s what it is for us Christians. David is redeemed, Moses is redeemed, you and me are too because we are under the power of redemption.

Hebrews 9:12 You did not enter by means of the blood of goats or calves but He entered the most Holy place once for all by His own blood having obtained eternal redemption.

So our redemption is eternal. It’s not a six month redemption like how we sign a work contract and after two years you have to sign it again. It’s an eternal contract. So if you are saved it’s eternal. Jesus paid for your eternal life. It’s not the blood of goat or a cow but it’s His own blood, a pure blood without any disease and without the virus of sin. It’s a very pure blood. A blood that gives life and this blood is a pact agreement between us and God.

Jesus gave us eternal life, eternal salvation. So you brothers and sisters, try to avoid having a four month salvation. Many people might say, “I was a Christian when I was 18 and I remember singing and doing God’s work, but now I am tired and my body is old” - NO - push yourself and ask God for strength that you might keep this salvation eternally.

We are here at Sylvie’s place and it’s very cold and our brother has $20 in his pocket and I say because it’s very cold I will light the fire but I don’t have any newspaper. So I ask my brother to give me $20 to start the fire. Would you give this to me? I don’t think so!!! To give the $20 is a big problem! So we must not allow our salvation to be burnt by the devil. We must not give it to the devil and tell him to start the fire of sin in our lives. When the devil comes, send him somewhere else. Ask him to go elsewhere. Tell the devil not to waste his time here but to go elsewhere because I won’t give you any room.

- Live and teach others the law of the Bible (we are lawyers of this earth)
-Praise God He has redeemed you (at every moment)
- Keep your redemption for eternity (don't give up)

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Power of Redemption (part II)

By Odon Bulamba (summary only)

As you know, when kings die they are buried. Whether poor or rich, every one of us will be buried and if the lions eat you, when the lions die you will be buried too. Anyway, life finishes there. The earth received David. The earth received Adam. The earth has swallowed a lot of people that we know and kept them. But the day when the earth swallowed Jesus, three days later the earth threw Him up. Jesus was bitter for the taste of the earth (like the bitter taste of vinegar Jesus was given to drink on the cross). The earth knew that this man couldn’t stay there, He had to go out.

When you are sick for example, are you in peace? I don’t think so. Even if you are driving, you feel that you have to stop to throw up. If you are in a meeting, even if it were with a president, when sickness is there, you won’t stop it. And the earth could feel this nausea with Jesus too and this nausea was the power of redemption. It was the power of freedom. The earth was in trouble and the earth said let Him go.

So Jesus was alive. And something else - the tomb that was closely guarded, the tomb felt that it was not possible. In the same way as when you feel like you need to vomit, you cannot even close your lips, it has to go and if you close your lips it will come back again and go with pressure and you will throw up. And the tomb also could feel this power and rejected Jesus with power. All the soldiers in front of the tomb fell on the ground. That was the power of redemption.

And us as Christians, one day we will feel that we have been redeemed and Satan already knows how strong we are and if Satan hasn’t thrown you up yet that will be the time when he will throw you up because your price has been paid already a long time ago.

When Jesus was resurrected, the Bible says that His body was transformed. When you would see it, it was the same Jesus but He was living in spirit. He had a body that maybe didn’t have water. He had a shiny body and He had a body working as a spirit. And your body and my body how are they waiting? If someone has already paid the price, why are our lives and bodies not transformed too? If you smoked, you keep smoking, if you were drinking, you keep drinking. Have you already received redemption? The Bible says redemption is eternal.

Ephesians 1:7. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses according to the riches of His grace.

Our sins have been forgiven and we have received redemption through everything that He’s done. It means He paid for our sins. He paid also the price for our lives and on top of all this, He gave us grace. What a miracle! Animals don’t have grace. Birds don’t have grace. But for us, God gave us grace, the power of redemption. We have to be proud as Christians because someone paid our price. When I’m hungry, He gives me some food. When I’m sick, He heals me. When I’m in distress, He gives me joy. But what do I give him?

And do you know one thing? - after Jesus’ death on the cross, someone who was very courageous but in a negative way, took a spear and came in front of the body and pushed the spear and said “Die again.” He pierced the body which was already dead. What a misery. Something that is not good for us Christians, and us Christians today, we do that. When our brothers or sisters are in a mistake, and we find out that they are dying spiritually, we take also a spear to pierce them to say let’s finish it once and forever. This is a danger for us.

So the power of redemption gave us transformation. The power of redemption gave us life. That’s how you have been called by God and saved. When you were saved, I can tell you that it was not your will. That was God’s will because He loved you first. How many people in this world look for God and cannot find him? They ask me, “where can I find God? I really need to be saved but I can’t. I really need to know the gospel but I can’t. I push myself to read the word of God, but I can’t understand a word. I try to follow people to have the Word of God explained to me but I can’t understand anything”. They cry everyday and say that if Jesus came back today I’ll be lost. And you who have received the grace of knowing Jesus, you don’t even think of when Jesus will return. Take the assurance of salvation tonight. Be assured that if Jesus will return today, you’ll be with him in the heavens. And you the good news that Jesus gave you - when Jesus will return only those who belong to him will be caught up in the air. It means that you and me will be caught up in the air. I see my sister Colleen and say “Ah, sister you are here. Praise the Lord!” And we are going to dance together, and sing with our brother. We are going to sing with everybody. What a joy! The price of our life has been paid.

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Fruit of the Holy Spirit

By Shari Bhandal

We can all have more than one fruit of the Spirit, but we are stronger in some fruits than others. Here is a simple quiz to let you know which fruit is your strongest and which could use a little work.
Rank the Following 1 through 9, with 1 being your most important or most likely response to the situation.

1. You're watching TV when the power goes out. You...
____ A) Do your best to keep from calling the electric company to chew them out.
____ B) Smile and put on some candles. The electricity will come on soon enough.
____ C) Use the time wisely to get some things done around the house.
____ D) Enjoy the family conversation while waiting for the lights to come back on.
____ E) Start up a game of some sort.
____ F) Go around and make sure everyone is okay.
____ G) Take a nap or read a book.
____ H) Comfort those who are afraid of the dark.
____ I) Spend some time in prayer and reflection.

2. You're at a party with friends. You...
____ A) Stay with the group rather than sneaking off with your boyfriend.
____ B) Hang out, even though a group of people are being a little annoying.
____ C) Offer the girl who spilled punch a t-shirt out of your car.
____ D) Enjoy the small conversation going on outside on the patio.
____ E) Start the party games.
____ F) Offer to get more drinks when the soda gets low.
____ G) Break up the fight going on between two guys in the corner.
____ H) Leave the fun to console your friend who just got dumped.
____ I) Walk away from the party when it becomes too tempting. You know God would not want you to compromise yourself.

3. You're studying and your friend calls on the phone to tell you about an argument with her mom. You...
____ A) You tell your friend you are studying and you will call him back when you're done.
____ B) You listen as your friend relays the argument she got into with her mom, knowing you will have to get back to studying eventually.
____ C) You set aside your studying, because you're already ahead. It's important to help your friend out.
____ D) You soothe your friend's anger by offering some consolation.
____ E) Start cracking jokes to make your friend laugh. Then she might not be so angry and sad.
____ F) Offer to let her come over to your house for a movie night so she can let things simmer down a bit.
____ G) You offer your friend advice on how to make things right with her mom.
____ H) Go over to your friends house and give her a hug. She needs to feel loved right now.
____ I) Take some time to pray with your friend about her relationship with her mother.

Now, add up your A answers, B answers, etc. Write down your scores for:
A: _____ Self-Control
B: _____ Patience
C: _____ Goodness
D: _____ Gentleness
E: _____ Joy
F: _____ Kindness
G: _____ Peace
H: _____ Love
I: _____ Faithfulness

So what is your strongest fruit of the spirit and what fruits do you need to work on? Your lowest scores are your strengths, and your highest scores are the areas where you might want to do a little work. So, if you had the highest score for A, you may need to develop more self-control, but if your lowest score was C your strength is in being good.
What is the Fruit of the Spirit? :

It is a term commonly used by Christian teens, but it is not always understood. Fruit of the Spirit is often used to describe the best aspects of a Godly character.
The Nine Fruits of the Spirit: There are nine fruits of the Spirit that are bestowed upon believers to define a person's character. Those fruits include the following:
• Faithfulness
• Self-Control
• Patience
• Goodness
• Gentleness
• Joy
• Kindness
• Peace
• Love

Scriptural References: Fruit of the Spirit is mentioned in several areas of the Bible. However, the most applicable passage is Galatians 5:22-23 where Paul actually lists out the fruit. Paul used this list to show the contrast between a Godly character and one that is focused on fleshly concerns.

Galatians 5:22-23 - "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control." (NIV)

What Does that Mean for Me?: The fruit of the Spirit is meant to be a list of qualities we strive to have. If you look at your character and find that you are lacking in any of these areas, take heart. We are human beings and not one of us are perfect. However, God calls us all to strive for perfection. That was the purpose in Paul listing out the fruit for the Galatian church. These are qualities any Christian teen should strive to have in their character, and they take work.
Receiving Fruit of the Spirit: Prayer, Bible reading, and effort go into being able to bear the fruit of the Spirit. As it is suggested in Ephesians 4:22-24 you should try to let go of any bad attitudes or habits. Through prayer you can ask for the fruit of the spirit and ways you can improve yourself so you can become much more God-like in your character.

Ephesians 4:22-24 - "You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness." (NIV)

What Fruits of the Spirit Do I Have?

Monday, August 17, 2009

Self Control Bible Study

By Shari Bhandal

1. Consider what happens when we don’t have self-control.

a. According to Proverbs 13:3 what happens to the person who does not

control his speech?_________________________________________.

b. According to Proverbs 20:1 what is a person who does not have self-control

over his drinking of alcohol?___________________________.

c. According to Proverbs 21:17 what happens to a person who does not

control his desires for pleasure?_______________________________.

d. According to Proverbs 25:28 what is a person without self-control like?


e. According to 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 what are some areas of lacking in self-control that will mean a person cannot make it into heaven?___________


f. According to 1 Peter 2:11 in what areas do we need to exercise selfcontrol?____________________________________________________.

What do these things do to us?__________________________________.

2. The Scripture gives us some specific areas of life in which we are to have self-control.

a. According to Psalm 101:5 what are some things we need to control so that

the Lord is not against us?______________________________________.

b. According to Proverbs 23:1-2 what is an important area of self-control?


c. According to Proverbs 23:20 what are two things we need to have control

over in our lives?_____________________________________________.

d. According to Matthew 5:29 what must we control?__________________.

e. According to Luke 12:22 what is an important area of self-control?______________________________________________________.

f. According to Luke 21:34 what are three things we need to not let get

control of our lives?___________________________________________


g. According to Romans 13:13 what are 5 things we need to control in our


h. According to 2 Timothy 3:2-5 what are several things that must be



i. According to James 1:26 what must be under control if we are going to

practice religion in a proper way?________________________________.

3. It is important to understand the way that we are to attain self-control.

a. According to Matthew 16:24 what are two things we need to do if we are

going to control ourselves and follow Jesus?________________________


b. According to Romans 13:14 what are two things that need to be done to

attain self-control?____________________________________________.

c. According to Galatians 5:16 how must we live so that we do not give in to

the desires of the sinful nature?__________________________________.

What does this mean?_________________________________________


d. According to Galatians 5:24 what have people done who belong to Christ?


e. According to Ephesians 4:22-24 what are three steps we need to take in

order to have self-controlled lives?________________________________


f. According to 1 Thessalonians 5:8 what are three things we need to put on

in order to have self-control?____________________________________.

g. According to Titus 2:1-5 what are at least 5 things that will help men be



h. What are at least 5 things that will help women be self-controlled?______



i. According to Titus 2:11-12 what are three things the grace of God teaches


5. Finally, we need to see the benefits of self-control.

a. According to Proverbs 16:32 what is better?________________________


Why do you think this is true?____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

b. According to 1 Peter 3:10 what will be the benefit of controlling our


c. According to 1 Peter 4:7 what will we be able to do better when we are


d. According to 1 Peter 5:8 why is it so important for us to be selfcontrolled?__________________________________________________.

e. According to 2 Peter 1:8 what will self-control keep us from being?_____


Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Power of Redemption

By Odon Bulamba (summary only - 6th Sept, 02)

What is redemption? What do you understand by redemption? Each day we sing about redemption and we read about redemption, so what is it?

Redemption means that someone is a guarantor to pay your debt and God accepts to take all the problems you have. Even if the price of these problems are life; He will give His life for you.

One day there was a hunter in the forest hunting and when he was hunting he saw a monkey and there was a baby sitting on his chest. And the hunter said it’s a good opportunity to eat monkey today. He took his gun, he aimed at the monkey and the monkey saw the man. And the monkey made noise. The female monkey arrived and when she came, she took the child. She put out her hand toward the man and showed him her baby and touched her breast to show that she was breastfeeding. So it means that if you kill me, it’s over for my baby. The male monkey came in front of his wife and hid her and his baby and he showed that he was ready to be killed. I assure you that this man didn’t kill this monkey. He left and said it’s incredible to see a monkey ready to give his life because of his family and little baby. Isn’t this something important?

When I (Odon) watch TV there’s a programme about animals on it and often when the Lions are hunting animals, they often attack the small animals and the adult animals always sacrifice their life to protect them.

When I was 12, we had a hen and this hen had chicks. I named her Jociah because she knew how to protect herself. One day I wanted to get one of her chicks, although I had a stick in my hand, the hen didn’t fear the stick and attacked me to protect the chick.

Doesn’t this teach us something? A hen that is ready to take many risks to protect her chick and the monkey to take many risks to protect his family.

We have more value than all these animals but for us human beings it’s often impossible to protect our brothers and sisters. Animals can do it, so why not us humans? And from that, God saw that mankind was not on the right way. We started sinning against God. Men started killing one another and from that God said that everything we do is sin. Satan is here with a weapon and is destroying us spiritually.

God really wanted man to find a redeemer. He looked at man who had so much value on earth and there was nobody to redeem them. So He said it would be good if someone sins that they kill an animal to redeem the price of a life. So the animal was used to protect the life of a man and man started sacrificing dove, cows etc to try to redeem their souls.

But God saw that the value of the blood of these animals was not equal to the value of the blood of man. The value of the blood of these animals did not have the value of the soul of a man. Because God remembered that He said to man that he has to dominate over everything on earth and how would it be possible for the life of an animal to be more valuable than the life of a man? Is it possible for a slave to be master of his master?

And God said “no, it’s not possible”. The only thing left that has more value than man is me, God. So I have to go down to give my life. As I created man the first time that I gave them life, I want to give him life again. And God asked, “Who is ready to go and save man?” From that time God made the decision to leave Heaven and come to earth and the only aim of leaving Heaven was to give us redemption.

One day I was in the 7th day Adventist Church and the preacher said that Jesus was a tourist, that Jesus left Heaven to do some tourism on earth. But Jesus didn’t come to sightsee. He came to give us redemption. He came to redeem us and pay the price of our life. So Jesus was born, grew up and worked and one day, the day came when he had to die. What happened? He already said that he would die. “I will die and my death won’t be a normal death, because I’m here to bear all your burdens. I will die so that you will have life. I will die so that your souls will be redeemed. I will die so that you won’t be a slave anymore. I will die so that you will be completely free”.

And Jesus gave his life. He said, “Here I am, take me”. And men who thought they were strong arrested Jesus. They flogged him and spat on him. They took his clothes off. He was completely humiliated. As you know, prisons here are better. But visit prisons in Asia or Africa and you will see the value of a prisoner. Each morning you are woken up with a whip. During the day you are tortured and when night comes, you say thank God because now you can have a rest. And on top of that you cannot eat. You sleep on the floor and there’s water on it. Maybe that’s the place where the prisoner’s go to the toilet. Sometimes you have to eat it. It’s really a life of misery, problems and difficulties. And Jesus Christ said He would take everything. So He was made naked and said He would pay the price for the people.

He knew tortures of all kinds and after being whipped a crown was made and put on his head. It was not a crown that kings and queens put on their heads. It was not a crown of diamonds and gold. It was a crown of something else. What was it? A crown of thorns. A crown that made blood flow. A crown that would humiliate the presence of Jesus. It was a crown of suffering and Jesus was there and he was patient. He was paying the price of my murders. He was paying the price of your pride, your slanders, your hatreds and disorders.

And it was not enough. Man said there are still people doing evil things on earth and if Jesus has to pay the price for everybody, he must be tortured more. So he had to carry the cross. I tried to do some research. The cross that Jesus bore was 99kgs in weight and himself, was about 72kgs. And he bore His cross for three hours. Imagine how heavy it was. After being flogged and whipped He had to bear this heavy cross. He was taken to the place of the skull and that’s where He’d be finished.

The soldiers arrived with nails and hammers. Imagine yourself coming with a hammer and nails and you are asked to nail Odon onto the table in front of you. Do you think it would be possible after crying and shouting to now nail me (Odon)? Who can do it amongst us? Could you do this to someone else? Even if it’s your enemy I assure it’s not something easy. You can give the first hit but the shout of this person will touch your conscience. And your conscience will tell you that what you are doing is not good. But this man nailed Jesus to the cross. Although Jesus was crying and shouting, they said “We don’t care, He has to pay the price”.

His feet too were nailed and us Christians today nail Jesus on the cross again. We don’t have any pity on all that He has known of suffering, and we keep making Him pay the price of our sins.

So Jesus was nailed on the cross and after this He was raised and said He was thirsty. What was He given to drink? He was given vinegar. It was a vinegar with added bitter herbs to the point where Jesus tasted it and he couldn’t even swallow it. It was very bitter and He said it’s better to be thirsty and die, than to drink that. And man would just laugh. They didn’t even feel like they were killing someone. And how many times do we take pleasure in other people’s misery.

And at the end Jesus said it’s all finished. It is finished. Just one more thing, I must find the key of redemption. I must find the power for redemption.

Jesus left his body. He was buried and remember, He promised that after three days, they would see him again. The promises of God are always fulfilled. It might be 10 or 100 years but it will always happen. So don’t lose faith, don’t stumble in your faith. Always trust God and you will see what God will do. It’s just a question to do what He asks you to do. What you have to do, just do it.

Because after three days He said He’ll be alive, they put soldiers in front of His tomb and Jesus went down and the Bible says that first of all He went to free people. The people that had been captured for a long time. He went to set them free. Secondly, He took back the key of life to give us freedom.

- Redemption means someone pays the price of our debt for us
- Our soul is so important that God Himself left heaven to redeem it
- Jesus sacrificed His life in order for us to live for eternity
- Every time we sin we crucify Jesus again
- Jesus took the keys of death and hades to set our souls free

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Wife of a Servant of God (Part III)

By Odon Bulamba

Luke 17:28-30; Genesis 18 & 19

When Lot’s wife was turned into salt, Lot carried on with his two daughters, and because salvation is personal Lot didn’t look to see where his wife was neither did the daughters and they all continued forward and arrived somewhere.

Later on the daughters got their father drunk in order to sleep with their own father. It is written in Leviticus that to sleep with your father is forbidden. The oldest daughter influenced the youngest one and this is always the way with women who are wives of servants of God. You! Who are adults, why do you influence the younger ones to sin? You know that this is a sin, but you say Hayley go and do that and this, this is a short cut if we pray for five years we are just wasting our time, just take the short cut. Maybe Ange will say, oh Zoe don’t do it that way do it another way. To the extent that the oldest Christian used the youngest one to spy on other Christians, first they are friends and then your job is to go and check to see where Michael went and you are to come back and give me a report, and you will go and do this. Just because of curiosity, because I want to know what is going on around me, I will start controlling the physical life of everybody instead of looking at their spiritual side in order to help them. And when you’ll have your report, you’ll judge the people involved. Who are you to judge God’s servants, who gave you this authority? This is exactly where curiosity leads.

So Lot’s daughters misled their father, they got him drunk and then they did what they wanted. You, who are wives of servants of God or maybe you will be one tomorrow, never get your husbands drunk with your nice words, don’t mislead your husband with flattery because they might fall and sin. There are examples in the Bible; Jesus’ mother Mary, the Bible says that Mary was pregnant, although Mary was pregnant she always submitted to Joseph. Mary was carrying God in her stomach, but she was not proud, she was very gentle, she fully obeyed Joseph even though Joseph was just a carpenter. She didn’t say, God visited me and who are you! She was submitted and when Joseph said we are going left she would go left. The Bible doesn’t say that they discussed because Joseph also had a mission for Mary’s life.

But today what can we see with the wives of servant’s of God. You will see instead of the husband deciding, the wife is there first of all, “no, no why that? Shut up”. Even in front of other men you’ll say, “no, shut up you cannot say that”, and the husband will be humiliated. Do you know who you are married to? He is a servant of God, respect him. It’s a grace because most women want a servant of God but they never find him, many say, I want to marry someone like you but I didn’t have the opportunity. There are also those who regret to marry pagans. So let’s imitate who Mary was, Mary went with Joseph and she was about to give birth, Joseph looked everywhere and there was no room anywhere, he said to Mary there is only room here for the cows maybe we could stay there and spend the night. Mary humiliated herself, she didn’t say, “don’t you know that I am carrying God in my stomach, I cannot go where the cows are”.

The servants of God’s wives today say, “what, me going over there, no I can’t go over there, it’s really dirty over there, I don’t want to go there, that’s not my standard and I cannot go there”. Wives of servants of God must know their place and where they stand. You are here to fulfil a mission in your husband’s life and you must understand what you are going to do and if you are not careful you risk to be like Lot’s wife and you will stay behind somewhere on your way.

Let’s take another example from the Bible; in the old testament there was Potiphar’s family. Potiphar bought Joseph and Joseph was a servant in his house. Potiphar gave Joseph all the rights in his house except to touch his wife. However, Potiphar’s wife wanted Joseph more than her own husband which led to a problem between Joseph and Potiphar. Because Joseph didn’t have any power in Potiphar’s house and was just a servant, the wife wanted to create division between the two men. So women where is your place? You must serve your husband, you must give all your time to your husband.

When your husband comes home go and open the door for him, don’t send your child to open the door. When he enters, welcome him properly and ask him how he is. But many wives say, “oh you’re just disturbing me now, I’m talking”. This is terrible, the wives of servants of God must know their responsibilities, not to mislead men of God and they must try to put everything at its place.


- Salvation is personal so carry on even when others stop
- The wife of a servant of God must not influence others is a wrong way
- The wife of a servant of God must serve her husband

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Wife of a Servant of God (Part II)

By Odon Bulamba (summary only)

Luke 17:28-30; Genesis 18 & 19

The Bible says that when the angel pulled Lot into the house all the others were blinded. Now the wrath of God had to come. The angel of the Lord said, “go and leave this place, it is now time to leave this city.” The Bible tells us that Lot wasn’t very happy to leave Sodom, God wanted to save Lot but Lot hesitated, he wasn’t sure. How much do we also hesitate to leave sin? How many times does God ask us to leave our sin, and we think that if we leave this sin we will lose something. So the angel of the Lord pushed Lot and said go and see your family and tell them to get ready.

The Bible says that Lot went to see his son in law and he told him that God will destroy this city so we have to leave now, but he didn’t listen. Lot forgot about his neighbours who were around. Lot forgot the church of God in this city. Lot forgot all the people who were sinners in this city, Lot forgot even to ask for forgiveness for the others as Abraham did.

This is exactly what we Christians do today. “Ah! I’ve received this, this is mine and whether you receive something or not it is just your own business”. We are even selfish with God’s Word, to preach we think, “hmm, I am going to preach on Sunday, what am I going to say because I will be paid for that, oh actually I should have gone somewhere and worked so that I can have money but now I have to preach”.

The Bible says that we have received freely and we must give freely but some people want to lock themselves up with the Word of God and they can not see that others are in danger and they can not see that God will soon destroys things that are around and they can not see that everybody will be judged tomorrow. They think “because I know God’s Word I will just share it with my children and my wife only or maybe my son in law but not with people I don’t know”. God is very much against this, God wants every soul to hear the good news and any soul that will accept this good news will be saved. So why don’t we give the word of God to others?

Some people sing today and from time to time I ask for CD’s or tapes because I can not buy them. Those people who have been given a gift to sing, instead of giving this gift freely they change this gift and use it for business; you have received freely give freely. To go to a concert you must pay and if a pastor is preaching there you must pay to get in, where are we going? Lot was in this situation, however God didn’t look at that, He forced Lot to leave and He said to Lot you must leave this city. God showed Lot where to go but Lot said, “no God I’m not going there it is too far, I’d like to go to this village because it’s closer” (Gen 19). That is how God’s servants are proud and they even resist God Himself. God says something and the servant of God says no I want that. Who are you to resist the Lord, who are you to oppose God’s order, are you God’s master or are you His servant? Men must know his place.

Now the angel of the Lord said now it is time to go. The Bible says that Lot took his two daughters and his wife with him. He was told they cannot look behind. The wife started to have curiosity in her heart. Curiosity said, “you are looking ahead of you but there is something behind, just turn around and have a look”. Because curiosity was very alive in her life, the Bible tells us that she turned around and she remained there. We can find that most wives of servants of God have this problem, they are very curious. Just look around, they might be the pastor’s wife, an evangelist’s wife, or another servant of God’s wife but they are very curious. This is their first battle and most of them are weak on that point. “Oh! Who is going there, is it Guillaume?” The wife will confirm that yes it is Guillaume and she will forget that she is with her sheep and she will stand up and have a look around. After confirming that yes it is Guillaume she will say, “what is he doing?”, and after that she will think “why is he doing that?” So you will see step by step because of curiosity the wife will be distracted and she will lose what she has. So, servants of God’s wives, avoid curiosity.


- The wife of a servant of God must leave sin behind
- The wife of a servant of God must share what they have with others (esp. Word of God)
- The wife of a servant of God must use their gifts freely and not expect to be paid
- The wife of a servant of God must avoid curiosity

We can all apply these principals even if we are not wives.