Showing posts from December, 2014

To whom shall we go

66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.
67 “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.
68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.” - John 6:66-69 The story took place at the backdrop of a very hard teaching given by Jesus after he fed the five thousand people with the miracle of the five loaves and two fishes. It was a point in time when many of the so-called disciples decided to turn back and stop following him, as they were unable to accept that hard teaching given by Jesus.

Throughout my Christian life, I have seen many people leaving and joining the church, for various reasons. I remember one friend, who came to know Christ and within a few weeks, decided that he will no longer follow Christ because he simply cannot accept that as a Christian, he has to forgive people, given that he has someone in his …

The 'Three' Wise Men

Question: How many wise men were there when they visited Jesus and how old was Jesus back then?

Most illustrations we have from traditions show that there were three wise men who visited Jesus when He was just freshly out of the womb.

 However, why not take a closer look at Matthew 2:
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod,Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”  When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:  “‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”  Then Herod called the Mag…

Questioning the New Testament World

Contrary to the title, this post is not about questioning what we know about the world in which the New Testament was written. Rather, it sets to examine the questions that the Christians in the New Testament world asked with regard to their new faith, which eventually led to the writing of the 27 pieces which we now know as the New Testament.

You see, the early Christians faced a lot of issues which we do not necessarily experience in the modern church. The early Christians did not have the Bible such as us, but they inherited the Jewish Scriptures, from which the apostles had referred to in order to make sense of the kerygma and its implications. The Jewish Scriptures provided the first point of reference, together with the oral teachings of Jesus which some were later recorded down in what we later know as the Four Gospels.

Questions which the early Christians would have asked included:
Who is this Jesus whose identity is to shape ours? What is his significance and why does he deser…

How to ask a woman out for a date

I must say, the only reason why I share this on my blog is because of how the makers of this video made something modern to look so vintage. But still, a lot of gems of wisdom in this short video.

Nine Years On

It just gets more exciting, doesn't it? Last year when I was typing the same reflection, things were getting so much exciting in my life. Even after nine years of Christ in my life, it still amazes me how He has come into my life and transform the whole trajectory of my life. While the prospect of going full time into a Christian ministry has been something that I have been contemplating since I stepped into the working world, it just seems so surreal that I am now part of a Christian parachurch organisation which seeks to equip and disciple Christians in Singapore and around the region. Little would I have expected also that I would be running and heading a ministry by itself (and in the process, perhaps got my face and name known to the conservative Christian world in Singapore).

Or perhaps it is also unexpected that my own church ministry involvement is taking its own turn. After years of serving all over the place, and people have commented that I seem to be all over the place…

The Condition of God's Love

Perhaps the title of this post will shock some of you. How can it be? Doesn't God love unconditionally?

The genesis of this post starts with a meeting which I did not have a chance to attend when my leader challenged the people to think about the question whether God's love is unconditional. The answer he gave later on is that it is not (for reasons I will explain later on). This was followed by a series of unrelated exchanges from some of my group members and friends as well as some reflections on grace, part of it was mentioned in a few posts earlier. With some of my group members, there were mentions that I told truths but showed no grace. I was of course being difficult (and sometimes intentionally play hard-to-convince). But what people mean when they said that there is no grace is actually that they are not being shown niceness. This effectively equates grace to niceness, which I do not agree. Similarly, people equate love with niceness, which is not necessarily true as …

Never imagined this

11 Brothers and sisters, if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been abolished. 12 As for those agitators, I wish they would go the whole way and emasculate themselves! - Galatians 5:11-12 (Emphasis mine) I never thought of it but I just read Galatians and found the above bolded line intriguing. Several commentators have argued that this is an allusion to the castration of pagan priests back in those cultures. Some people have argued for a more literal reading. Whatever the case, church goers who believe that Christians should be nice will find this a scandal which they will find hard to explain it off. How could Paul, the contributor of most part of the NT, be saying such stuff?

Well, if you have a Jesus who flips tables, then surely you can have a Paul who can be so infuriated by his detractors that he is compelled to use imprecatory language for biblical reason.