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Showing posts from September, 2020

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Unity of church for the witness of Life  1John 3:1-12 v11 For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one  another.                                                                                                      :          In today’s passage, the Apostle John explains what it means to be a child of God and contrasts that with those who are not.  He makes it clear that we are called children of God because of God’s love and not because of anything we have done (v1).  God’s love transforms us, such that the world will reject us just as they did Christ.  We should not be dismayed but seek to emulate the One who has called us into His family.As children of God, we are called to be different.  We do not live a life of sin, as we did prior to our calling.  It is not that Christians do not sin, but our sin grieves us because it grieves God.  We do not sin out of fear but out of love for God.  As such, we are called to practice righteousness becaus…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Unity of the Church for the witness of lifeEzekiel 37: 15-22V17 And join them one to another into one stick, that they may become one in your hand.On succession of Solomon's son Rehoboam around the 930 BC, old testament accounts that, old Israel was split into two kingdoms. The Kingdom of Israel in north and the Kingdom of Judah in the south. Here in this scripture portion we see, how God is commanding Prophet Ezekiel be instrumental for a peacemaking accord between the two kingdoms. The Prophet had a vision to unite severed branches of Israel into one and enter into prosperity with one God and one King. God asked Ezekiel to get two sticks and write the names of Judah and Ephraim on each of the sticks which would become one in his hand.          The unification should happen, first by bringing people to their own land, second, their purification from idolatry, install them as united into one nation, with…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

  UNITY OF THE CHURCH FOR THE WITNESS OF LIFEJohn 17:20-26V23   I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.      This passage belongs to the text called as the High priestly prayer of Jesus. Here, Jesus intercedes to his Father that just as the Father God is in Him and Jesus is in God and they are one, so the disciples may also be in a holy union as one.  Thus, unity among the believers would follow the model of the union of God in Trinity. Perfect unity starts from the mystery of the Trinity.  Jesus was sent to the world while being part of the Trinity for fulfilling an eternal purpose.       Our unity with one another does not mean that we are all identical in nature, thoughts and feelings.   In spite of our differences, our common point is in Christ Jesus   who brings us together. Our unity is indeed a powerful witness to the world that is becoming easily fragmented.  Where there is un…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Elderly generation: Aged for EngagementsPsalms 71
v3 Be to me a rock of refuge, a strong fortress, to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress.Our psalm seems to have an unknown author who is very close to God. It’s a prayer of an aged believer and can be associated too closely with the life of King David who could have rendered it during the crisis of Absalom's rebellion.
Engagements through Spiritual Discourses: According to Charles Spurgeon, we have here “the prayer of an aged believer, who in holy confidence of faith, strengthened by a long and remarkable experience, pleads against his enemies, and asks further blessings for himself.” The author in all of his giving-up situations takes up the courage to continue spiritual discourses even when he is aged. Our spiritual discourse has to be enriched in every way possible by involvement in both public worship and personal prayers. Every aged person in the church needs to have such kind of spiritual discourses especially during t…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Fruitful Faith and Faithful Functions
1 Timothy 5:1-10

v1 Do not speak harshly to an older man...
"Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is.”
-The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway
The elderly generation is the custodian of fruitful faith through their faith journeys and life experiences. The elderly have to be treated with what they have accumulated through their life experiences and not by what they do not have at present. They were considered as responsible faith reflective spaces among the members of the early church. This gestured the faithful functions of the church during those times.

Here the apostle directs Timothy how to minister to people elder to him. He is to reprove elders with respect. Also he has to honor the widows in the faith community. Paul's emphasis is for Timothy to treat the members of the house churches as his closest family members. This advice may reflect the OT admonition to honor the aged in Lev.19…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

FAMILY IN RELATIONSHIP WITH PARENT-CHILDREN TIESEphesians 6:1-9
v3 “so that it may be well with you and you may live long in the land on the earth”As a Household Code, the fifth chapter of Ephesians addresses the responsibilities of husbands and wives. Apostle Paul completes the family picture when he shares about the relationship between parents and children in the sixth chapter. Our passage for today's meditation shares this insight of how existence and growth of family adds to the commitment and warmth in relationships.

Family - A School of Obedience: ‘Obey your parents in the Lord’ in verse 1 is God's commandment to his children which includes an inward reverence as well as the outward expression to act. Obey in the Lord. Matthew Henry states "Your parents teach you good manners, and therein you must obey them. They teach you what is for your health, and in this you must obey them: but the chief things in which you are to do it are the things pertaining to the Lord"…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

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From half-disciple to Disciple: St. Mathew Day
St. Luke 18:18-32

v22 Sell all that you own and distribute the money to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come and follow me.In this passage, we see Jesus counselling the rich young ruler, who approached him for advice to gain eternal life, the ultimate reward hoped for by the Jews. The rich ruler was highly convinced of the fact that there was no reason he could be denied the ultimate reward of spirituality. He was blinded by his self-justified religious consciousness. Having appropriated all religious requirements and maintained all ethical and moral living standards, he assured himself to be most upright and qualified for higher spiritual rewards. But Jesus breaks his distorted sense of religiosity and reminds him that he is just halfway there and there is much more to go and be. But, with all his credentials, qualities and merits, we see that he was eventually just a “half disciple”.
To be a disciple of Christ, one has …

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Elderly generation : Embodiments of Divine Experiences Imparting HopeIsaiah 40:21-31

“but those who wait for the Lord will renew their strength...” (Is 40:31)The popular saying –“Old is Gold” portrays the treasures the past gifts to the present. Old age is a similar gold treasury gathered along the journey of life on the earth. It carries the ups and downs of life that taught dos and don’ts to face life in varied circumstances and, acts as a guiding source for the coming generations. The passage for today reads aloud like the experiences of an old person to the young, nourishing them to face distress in their life.  

The portion is believed to be prophesied by Prophet Isaiah to the people of Judah when they were dragged into Babylonian exile that made them lose every hope about future. He rejuvenates the people in the knowledge of God and enumerating the experiences of God’s interventions in different situations of life.

As a wise old man, the prophet alludes to the incomparability of Go…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Elderly Generation: Custodians of fruitful life (Senior Citizens Day)
Luke 2:25-38
V29 “Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word…”
Andy Rooney, a famous radio and television writer, once said, “The best classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person.” If you’ve ever sat down with a grandparent, an older mentor, or just an elderly friend, you know this quote to be true. They might not be the most technologically advanced as young people, but they may surprise us with nuggets of wisdom which we may not find in any book.

In today’s passage we see two elderly persons – Simeon and Hannah – who rejoice and praise God at the sight of the infant Jesus and recognize him as the Savior. The words of Simeon offer a glimpse into his heart that becomes a model for a fruitful elderly life.
Peace with his circumstancesSimeon had peace in his heart and rejoiced that God had enabled his eyes to see the Savior. At a time when he could have spent time regretting…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

An Innocent Lie? Exodus 1:15-21
v19 The midwives answered Pharaoh, “Hebrew women are not like Egyptian women; they are vigorous and give birth before the midwives arrive.” 
When is it okay to tell a lie? When is it okay to stretch the truth just a little bit? I find that when needed, we can convince ourselves that any lie, had a purpose and was necessary in the given moment. We know that we should not lie – that lies are not rewarded. But what if a lie is absolutely necessary? What if it’s a matter of life and death?

The days of Joseph and his favor with Pharaoh were long gone, however his descendants, the descendants of Jacob and Isaac and Abraham continued to grow. While God’s promise to Abraham was being fulfilled, the new Pharaoh saw only a threat. He made various attempts at oppressing the Israelites in the hope of deterring them and discouraging them, and yet they continued to grow and thrive. Pharaoh ordered the Hebrew midwives to murder any male babies that were born to Hebrew wo…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

“Women: Changemakers'’Luke 1:46-50 - Mary’s Song
v46,47 - And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lordand my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.
In this bible passage, Mary is conversing with Elizabeth who asks how it could be that the mother of the promised Messiah is visiting her. We see Mary imbibe a spirit of praise and rejoice in the happiness of being recognized by God for being His faithful servant. These verses, collectively known as Mary’s Song, give us an insight into her temperament.
Society wouldn’t perceive Mary as anything special, being a young woman not from a wealthy family or of noble stature. She knew that she was a sinner and yet God chose her because of her devotion and humility. She praises Him and exudes gratitude for revealing her strength and capabilities as a woman that otherwise did not know her worth. Mary was aware of the perceptions of the community she was in and how she could potentially be ostracized for having a child out of wedlock. However, she did not…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Women: Change MakersEsther 7:1-10
v3 Then Queen Esther answered, “If I have found favor with you, Your Majesty, and if it pleases you, grant me my life—this is my petition. And spare my people—this is my request.At first glance it might seem like Haman is the main character in this story. He seems to be the one to do the most and say the most. However, Queen Esther truly is the unlikely heroine in this story. Queen Esther was a Jewish woman that lived in a patriarchal society. However, her boldness and trust in God lead her to save a whole nation of people.

But first a quick backstory. King Xerxes gave Haman a seat of honor higher than that of all the other nobles. So, he’s an important guy in the kingdom. Mordecai is Esther’s Jewish uncle and Haman’s sworn enemy. Haman hated Mordecai so much that he had sent out a decree saying that all the Jews in the land would be killed. When Mordecai heard about this he asked Queen Esther to speak to the king. In the chapter five we can see the que…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Women: Change Makers (Sevika Sangham week)
Romans 16:1-6The greeting in Paul’s letter to the Romans (16:1-6) is an outpouring of his love towards all the saints; most notable among them were women. Paul identifies the lasting contributions that these women made on his personal life and the church. Some of these women were called “helpers”, some served as leaders, some extended hospitality and some others even risked their lives for the mission of spreading the gospel. These women were faithful to the call that God had placed in their life even if society (at the time) did not consider their place or role as significant as men. Their faithfulness was instrumental in laying the foundation of the church.
As children and daughters of the Most High, we need to remember that God has created each of us for a purpose. God has carefully placed gifts, talents, and “callings” inside of us and He wants us to utilize these for His glory. We should share our light with others and never be stopped by …

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Women: ChangemakersNumbers 27: 1-11


V7“What Zelophehad’s daughters are saying is right. You must certainly give them property as an inheritance among their father’s relatives and give their father’s inheritance to them.In this passage the daughters of Zelophehad reached out to Moses asking why they should be treated differently and be denied their inheritance because they are not ‘sons’ but ‘daughters’ of their father. They were standing up against the discriminatory norms of that time. They were standing for what they believed was right. They were standing up against the social injustice that prevailed in that culture.
The Lord tells Moses that Zelophehad’s daughters  were right in making their request.. The Lord clearly showed that He did not discriminate based on gender and gave them their rightful inheritance.
Many at times, we live in this world  with our own biases and discriminatory attitude. But it is very clear from this passage that the Lord does not show favoritism based on ge…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

  “The role of Women as change makers”
 Acts 16:11-15
v15 When she and the members of her household were baptized, she invited us to her home. “If you consider me a believer in the Lord,” she said, “come and stay at my house.” And she persuaded us.Everyone loves a transformation story. The power of Woman, The right man for the job is a woman, are couple of the bumper stickers we see around at this time of the year.
In Acts chapter 16:11-15 we read about a business woman named Lydia, who invited Paul and his companions to her home.

In the previous paragraph (Acts 16:6-10), we saw the work of the Holy Spirit in the ministry of Paul. Paul had considered Asia the next choice for the expansion of the Gospel, but God had His heart set on Europe. Luke describes their experience as “forbidden by the Holy Spirit” when trying to enter Asia and writes that the “the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them.” Paul and his companions submitted to the sovereign direction of God. Paul recognized his vision in…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

DON’T LET YOUR HIDDEN SINS KEEP YOU FROM THE WELLTheme: Women Changemakers
St. John 4:27-30

v. 28-29  So the Woman left her water jar and went away into the town and said to the people, come see the man who told me all I ever did.  Can this be the Christ?
Now this passage begins with a woman who comes to the well at the hottest time of the day all alone.  For women from that village a walk to the well for water was often done with other women companions, and it was seen as a time to socialize from the hectic work they had at home or at least in the midst of carrying a 40 pound jug on their heads (yes it’s true! That is how much each woman carried home), during their walks, most likely, there may have been gossiping with one another and that may have made the load seem a little lighter and evening was usually the time.  Why in the world would anyone go in the middle of the day?  It would have made more sense to go around dawn or dusk when it is cool and comfortable, when you can meet the …

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Education for Liberation:The Christian Character in ActionTitus 2:1-5
v1You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine.In the months before his execution by the Nazis, Dietrich Bonheoffer wrote: “I fear that Christians, who stand with only one leg upon earth, also stand with only one leg in heaven.” His concern was for Christians who had disengaged themselves from the world, who could stand by and watch atrocities committed as if the Christian message or individual Christian responsibility had no bearing whatsoever upon earthly affairs. Education liberates one from darkness to light and from death to life. Education begins at home. Knowledge is power.

Today’s chapter deals with the Christian character in action in various ages, both men and women, young and old. Here Paul deals with the ethical and moral responsibility of a minister in various stage of his or her life. Titus was to teach the things which are proper for sound doctrine.

Paul begins with the senior men. That…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Education for LiberationJohn 8:31-47
v32   “You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free”.Liberation is a praxis, the action and reflection of men and women upon their world in order to transform it. “Paulo Frère.
Why do we need liberation? Where are we tied up or in bondage in this world? How many of us are really interested in a liberation if at all we want to consider. It is here that the need of educating oneself and acquiring wisdom especially wisdom from above warrants its necessity.
Education and knowledge of the word of God frees our mind instead of numbing it or paralyzing. We learn on a daily basis through constant contact with our teacher who is our creator. When we have an open dialogue with our Lord through prayer and constant communication through the word of God we get to know God more every day and finally we get equipped to live a successful life in this world. Jesus is our ultimate Guru and teacher. He talks to us and teaches us His word. Psalm 119:105 say…

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Education for liberationProverbs 4:1-9
v6 - "Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you;love her, and she will watch over you."
Education is defined in multiple ways. Some dictionaries define it as an enlightening experience, some simply as knowledge or scholarship. It is also defined as the process of receiving or giving systematic instruction, especially at a school or a university.Education gives us a knowledge of the world around us and develops in us a perspective of looking at life. It helps us build opinions and have points of view on things in life.The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically and free the mind from the social and political constraints instead of numbing it. Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education.

The Bible teaches us that having knowledge simply isn’t enough. Knowledge is knowing facts about things. But Wisdom is from God alone. Wisdom has three aspects: knowledge about God’s Truth…