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Showing posts from August, 2020

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Sacrament of Holy Baptism: A Walk from Death to New LifeRomans 6:1-11
v11 “So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus” Life illustrates an uninterrupted succession of departures and good-byes. The COVID pandemic reminds us of this harsh reality. Death due to natural disasters is a cause to worry. But death as a consequence to conscious decisions by people or communities causes alarm. The holocaust, nuclear bombings, and terrorism involves death-dealing forces.  Every generation feels that it is living in the worst of times.
Death is a reminder that the sin principle is at work always. Wretched people that we are! Who can rescue us from this body of death (Romans 7:24)? Romans 6:1-11 illustrates the purpose and function of the sacrament of baptism. Humanity can make the transition from sin into grace through the sacrament of baptism.
John the Baptist preached a Baptism of repentance, inviting the Jewish conscience to embrace a new lifestyle. Jesus…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Sacrament of Holy Baptism.Exodus 14:15-31

v22 The waters were divided and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground with a wall of water on their right and left".
This passage gives an account of an important landmark in the journey of the Israelites from Egypt to the Promised Land. They were a group of slaves who had nothing to be proud of. They did not have any place or status in the society. They were foreigners. They were being led by Moses to escape from the centuries’ long slavery in Egypt. But, to their dismay and frustration, there was the Red Sea as a barrier on their way ahead. In other words, they were between the devil and the deep sea now. They could not turn around, because there was the Egyptian army chasing them. Those were tense moments of uncertainty, fear, helplessness, etc. Then, by the Lord's command to Moses, the waters were divided, and they could move forward and reach the other shore safely. Going through the Red Sea meant liberation from the cl…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Sacrament of Holy BaptismJohn 3:1-8
V. 3.  In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born again.”Baptism is the Christian rite of initiation practiced by almost all who profess to embrace the Christian faith.  The practice is in direct obedience to the explicit mandate of the Lord (Matt. 28:16-20).  Seven sacraments are administered in the Mar Thoma Church.  Baptism is one of the two sacraments instituted and associated with our Lord known as Dominical Sacraments.  The ceremony of Baptism is an indispensable means of becoming a member of the Christian Church.  Baptism is an outward act of an inner experience.  It is a faith-union with Christ, and an identification with the death and resurrection of Christ (New Testament Studies - Rev. Dr. M.V. Abraham). Apostle Paul writes in his letter to Romans, “Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?  We were, therefore, buried with Him th…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian Witnessing among people of other faithActs 2:1-4V2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.Many Christians believe  that if  they go to church every sunday, read the Bible occasionally, pray their prayers when in necessity and go to some fellowship meetings if time permits they feel they are alright with God. Once in a while they opt to be a committee member, a youth fellowship member, a Sunday School teacher or a volunteer at some church function. They consider this an above normal christian life. God wants us lead not an adequate life by our standards but God wants us to meet His standards. Do we trust him completely, seek his wisdom ,strength and courage and love him as well as our neighbours as he wants us to do? We are the Bible many people of other faiths read everyday. To live a christian life means to allow Jesus to dwell in us and reflect and radiate his image to the society we belong. W…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian Witnessing Among People of Other Faith
Psalm 67: 1-7

V1-2 "May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine on us- so that you may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations”.God has given us his greatest blessing: salvation through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This blessing is given to us not just us to enjoy it, but for sharing the joy of salvation with others. It is the responsibility of every Christian to witness Christ. The great commission Jesus gave his disciples before he ascended to heaven was, “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the world”. We know his disciples fulfilled that commission. We don’t have to go faraway places to witness Christ. We can do that at school, at our workplaces and wherever we are. Our actions and words should reflect the love of God in us. Our humility, love, patience and the way we face problems in life, make us stand out. We witness our faith thro…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian witness among people of other faith2 Kings 5: 1-14
v3 She said to her mistress, “If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.” We tend to feel that the blessings of God are only for the chosen people but God had made a commandment for the Gentiles as well. God promises Abram “I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you. All of the families of the earth will be blessed in you” (Genesis 12:3). The Bible portion for today’s meditation is a record of how healing of God from above reaches a Gentile by crossing boundaries and act of a new ritual that he had not seen. We are talking about Namaan, a Gentile and the army commander of Araam who had to his credit many victories some of them at the cost of God’s chosen people – the Israelites.

1.      A powerful man looking towards the powerless for help: Though Namaan was a great man and honourable with his master, he was a leper. There was no known cure for lepros…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian witness among people of other faith1 Peter 2: 1-10
Vs 9 But ye are an elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation a people for God’s own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
As a teacher, I have had the opportunity to interact with students and teachers of all faiths. Being a Christian witness in their midst is a situation I face every moment of my life. When we are at church or amidst Christian believers, witnessing as Christians is easy. But the biggest challenge is when we are in the midst of people of other faiths. Even more challenging is when we are in the midst of atheists. They see our Christian values through our actions, words and deeds and hence we need to be mindful of it every moment. When the transformation begins from within us, being a Christian witness is easy. But without the transformation from within, we might be able to act Christian in certain instances whereas in other insta…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian Witness in People of Other Faiths 
Acts 10: 9-16 

V15: The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.” This happened three times, and immediately the sheet was taken back to heaven.”
It is very natural for those of us who are born and taught Christianity from a young age to take for granted our faith. However, there are many ways God reminds us that the faith we have in Him is not just something passive, but something that we must constantly work for and strengthen. One of the ways that I believe God does this was by delivering very straightforward messages to those of good faith. These messages, like the one that Peter received, redefine what we may not have realized about our faith and subsequently allow for more people to come to the faith. We see in this passage that Peter considers some animals clean while other unclean and thus not okay to eat. This is a misconception that God redefines but saying that all of His creation is pu…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian witness among people of other faith.Daniel: 1:1-21
Vs  17 To these four young men God gave knowledge and skill in every aspect.
The Book of Daniel chapter brings out the ardent faith of four youngsters and their very difficult life experiences. As Christians, we will face pressure to compromise our faith. Daniel and his three friends faced this compromise in the early life. They were taken captive to Babylon and served under their government.  
The world will try to conform you into their mold, that means, they will brainwash you. These Hebrew young teenagers were being brain washed into a Babylonian worldview. The same pattern employed by Nebuchadnezzar to draw Daniel and his friends away from the Lord is employed all around us today.  
Daniel 1:8 shows that Daniel was determined that he would not defile himself with the king’s food or with the wine he drunk. So he asked permission from the chief officials not to defile himself.  It is easier to resist temptation if you have th…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Christian witness among people of other faithsMathew 5: 13-16
Vs 13 You are the salt of the Earth.One of the most famous metaphors mentioned by Jesus Christ is that of us being the Salt and Light in the world. And the times of troubles that we see around us, requires that we reach out as Salt and Light to the world that needs Peace.Salt:
Salt has many connotations in history as well as in science. The Roman soldiers were paid in salt, the word ‘salary’ comes from the Latin word ‘salarium’ which means ‘salt-money’. When a person is called the ‘salt of the earth’, it means that the person is straightforward, genuine, useful and without hypocrisy.
·         Salt is used as a preservative and as believers we are required to act as preservatives on earth where we protect people and the world around from spoilage. Christian values require us to support and protect each other.
·         Salt is used as flavoring and hence Christian faith and values will help us be content and happy with our live…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Reformation: Faith community reformed by the Word of God
Galatians 1:1-6
v3-5 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Martin Luther, a Roman Catholic monk in Germany, is perhaps most remembered for nailing “95 Theses” to the Wittenberg Castle Church door Oct. 31, 1517. Thus began the public debate surrounding the sale of indulgences for the forgiveness of sin. Martin Luther’s study of scripture led him to question some of the church’s practices, not for argument’s sake, but in search for genuine relationship with God. Revolutionary inventions contributed to major shifts in society and religious life. The printing press was operating in Germany, thanks to Gutenberg. Martin Luther translated the Bible into the common German vernacular. He also wrote a small pamphlet called the “Small Catechism.” The printin…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Faith Community to be reformed by the Word of GodJoshua 3:1-17
Vs 5 Joshua told the people, “Purify yourselves, because tomorrow the Lord will perform miracles among you.
Joshua told the people, "Consecrate yourselves, because the LORD will do wonders among you tomorrow.". The Hebrew word for consecrate means "to prepare, to dedicate, to be hallowed, to be holy, to be separate or set apart." God was telling His people that if they were going to cross the uncrossable and follow the will of the Lord, they must be set apart to Him. They must be holy. This involves basically two things. Personal repentance of every known sin and putting oneself on spiritual alert to see God at work
One of the primary reasons Israel found their way blocked, and one of the reasons we find ours often blocked, is sin. Isaiah the prophet wrote, "Indeed, the LORD's hand is not too short to save, and His ear is not too deaf to hear. But your iniquities have built barriers between you an…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

FAITH COMMUNITY TO BE REFORMED BY THE WORD OF GOD1 PETER 1:13-25
VS 23   For you have been born again not by the perishable seed but of imperishable through the living and enduring word of GOD.The Bible teaches that God is God of mercy. His mercy is vast and beyond our comprehension. No matter how great our sin, if we truly repent and come to the throne of his grace, He is there to forgive. His assurance is that there is no sin in the world that the blood of Jesus shed on Calvary cannot cleanse and blot out. When David cried and asked for mercy, God heard and blessed him. The reckless son, when he got his right sense back, went back to his father and pleaded for mercy. His father took him with open hands.
When we commit our lives to Jesus and accept him as our Savior and Lord, we become his children. At one time we were alienated from God with no rights and privileges. But once you accept Him as Lord and savior, we are accepted into his family. He gave us the privileges and right to cal…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

  Faith Community to be reformed by the word of GodRevelations 1 :1-9Vs 6. To whom who loves us and freed from our sins by his blood and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion fore ever and ever Amen.
God’s word is unchanging and as Paul says to Timothy in 2 Timothy 3:16, all scriptures are God breathed and is useful for teaching,rebuking,correcting, and training in righteousness. Bible is the answer for all our questions, and many learned, skilled intellectuals have found comfort, solace, and peace in the word of God. God's word is a double-edged sword strong enough to pierce one's hard-hearted attitude and outlook and melt it like snow. It has the power to cleanse our sins even if it is crimson red and full of stains. Many were saved from the edge of suicide by this word. The word can truly reform any Christian from his rude and rough attitudes towards life to a pleasing, smooth and appealing one. The word of God is o…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Reformation Sunday: Faith community which has to be reformed by the Word of God2 Kings 23:1-6
v2 “The king stood by the pillar and renewed the covenant in the presence of the LORD - to follow the LORD and keep his commands, statutes and decrees with all his heart and all his soul ..“On October 31,1517 , when a German monk named Martin Luther, nailed his ’95 Theses’ on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, to debate about certain practices of the Catholic Church, little did he know that he ignited a spark that burst into a flame that spread across Europe and around the world, which we now call the Protestant Reformation .

As a young man, Martin Luther felt no peace in his heart with God, despite doing all that his religion prescribed. Once he even got on his knees and hands and crawled up the stairs of the Church of St John Lateran, saying ‘Our Father’, as the Church taught then that by doing so, he could release a soul from purgatory. Deep in his heart he felt there was somethin…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Reformation: Faith Community Reformed by the Word of GodMatthew 7:21-27
vs 24 Every one therefore that hears these words of mine and does is like a wiseman, who built his house upon the rock.The word of God which in times past been has been revealed to God’s people by the proclamation and preaching of God’s prophets and apostles, was made known to us through the Bible, and is available to us in the modern world in print and electronically. It continues to be the world’s top selling book having billions of copies sold. What makes the recorded word of God so valuable? The word of God makes a claim about itself. In Hebrews 4:12 it is stated, “Indeed, the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Simply put the word is relevant at all times and in all seasons, it has the power to transform the individual, and as some say, you read books bu…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

End of fifteen days lentLuke 6:20-26

v20 "Blessed are you who are poor..."What is the true source of joy and happiness that so many find to be elusive? Jesus begins his teaching on the way of the kingdom of heaven by addressing where true happiness is found.
The Gospel today presents four blessings and four curses in Luke’s Gospel. Some call this discourse the “discourse on the plain” because, according to Luke, Jesus came down from the mountain and stopped in a place which was flat and there He pronounced His discourse. In Matthew’s Gospel, the same discourse is given on a mountain (Mt 5:1) and is called “The Sermon on the Mount.” In Matthew’s discourse there are eight Beatitudes, which trace a programme of life for the Christian communities. In Luke, the sermon is shorter and more radical. It contains only four Beatitudes and four curses. The word ‘beatitude’ literally means happiness or blessedness. Jesus' way of happiness, however, demands a transformation from within …