Not Grudge but Love and Gratefulness to Parents

Why forgiving your parents is a way to salvation

Often have I come across sons and daughters who, due to certain reasons, have developed grudges against their parents.

Definitely, it is not right for children to develop and harbor negative feelings towards their parents! And if it already exists, it must be rid of right away. How?

The primary thing that children must do is to think and ponder. Ask yourselves, had your mother and father not fallen in love with each other, do you think you would come to existence? If God did not use them to be His instruments to your existence, do you think you would be born?

As we know, a human being is formed when the sperm cell of a man unites with the egg cell of a woman. The sperm cell and the egg cell have 23 chromosomes each. We must realize that all the cells in our body have 46 chromosomes each; only the sperm cell and the egg cell have 23 chromosomes respectively.


However, when the man’s sperm cell with 23 chromosomes meets the woman’s egg cell with 23 chromosomes after sexual intercourse, a cell with 46 chromosomes is formed. This cell will then divide into many cells, until a fetus is formed. And this fetus becomes a child that grows in the womb of a mother.

My point is, had it not for your mother and your father who contributed 23 chromosomes each, there wouldn’t be a “you” today. In other words, next to God, you owe your life and existence to your parents. So, why bear a grudge against them?

To children who have grudges against their parents, please take note of this. No matter how bad your parents are in your sight, no matter what it is that they had done that caused you deep pain, it is best that you forgive them and forget whatever they did that hurt you. Instead of remembering their shortcomings that only embitter you, why not remember instead the good things that they had done for you?

Actually you have so much to be thankful for to your parents. Foremost is, they reared you; they took care of you even from the time that you were still in the womb of your mother; and they raised you the best way they could. Proof to that is, you are still alive until this very moment, and with God’s mercy, you are without any physical deformity or any physical disability.

I don’t think that any son or daughter would ever survive and be what they are today if their parents had been cruel to them all their lives. Remember, no human being will ever survive if nobody will take care of him.

Humans are not like tortoises. When a mother tortoise lays eggs on the seashore, she will just cover the eggs with sand and then leave. After a certain period, the eggs will hatch, and soon after, you can see young tortoises frolicking in the sea right away. We can be sure that, so long as no predators will victimize them, the young tortoises will live even without being attended to by their mothers.


The same is true with newly-hatched chicks. They, too, can manage on their own even without being fed and cared for by hens. They will be able to survive so long as they won’t be devoured by rats, dogs, and cats.

But it is a totally different thing with humans. An infant has to be breastfed by his mother, he has to be taken care of, and he has to be watched over, day and night. A baby grows and continues to live because there are hands that feed him, cuddle him, and protect him. And those are the hands of his parents.

If, later on, the child felt that his parents had not been good parents to him for they failed to provide him with a good education and other comforts in life, nonetheless, those could not outweigh all the good deeds and sacrifices made by his parents when he was growing up. He must not feel bad especially if their failure to provide him with a comfortable life or a good education was due to their limited financial resources, and not because they loved him less.

Every child must always show appreciation and gratitude to his parents. As what the “Pasyon” says, “Even if the bones and flesh of a child would be ground into tiny pieces, it wouldn’t be commensurate to the sacrifices and hardships endured by his parents just to raise him.”



English Translation:
This you should be anxious of
And remember oft
The sufferings, pains and all
That in patience were borne
By your father and mother
 
Even if you finely ground
All the flesh and bones you have
Include the hairs on your body too
It will never be enough to repay
All the pains they bore for you
 
If you will not change
Your rebellious state
You will not find grace
Instead, invite the hate
Of the Lord our God

Besides, God is displeased with ungrateful children. In the Bible, children who were disrespectful and did not show gratitude to their parents went astray.

However, it is a reality that there are children who have the tendency to be rebellious and ungrateful to their parents. That is why the Bible has a specific admonition to children.

EPHESIANS 6:1-3 (KJV) says,

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.
2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;
3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

God has a promise to children who honor their father and mother: they will live long on earth.

So, if there is a deep-seated anger or hatred or bitterness in your heart towards your parents because they failed to live up to your expectations, or they have done you wrong, you better get rid of that feeling if you want to be a recipient of God’s promise.

Moreover, the word of God has the power to convert an ill feeling into something pleasant and beautiful. With God’s help, you can replace the anger that you feel with respect; and your hatred and bitterness, with love. That is very possible to happen because the word of God is capable of altering our thoughts and feelings.

Let me share with you a little story. In the 1980s, I used to be one of the resource persons in the radio program of Mr. Manolo Favis. In one particular broadcast, we were talking about suicide and the people who commit suicide. There I said, “People who commit suicide are stupid! Why will you commit suicide? Why will you put an end to your life when you are not the one who owns it?”

I was unaware that while we were broadcasting, there was one person who turned on his radio just to check the time, and he was able to listen to what I said. He was checking the time because come 10 PM he was going to commit suicide. (It was only about 9 PM then.)

Apparently, he thought of committing suicide because he was also feeling bad about his parents. But when he heard me say that it is stupidity to commit suicide and the people who committed suicide are all stupid, he got enlightened and he decided not to carry out anymore what he planned to do that night.

Later on, that man came to see me personally. He was crying while he was thanking me. He said my statement brought him back to his senses, and had it not been for what he heard from me, he could have ended his life. I was happy deep inside because I saw how the word of God worked in him.

Similarly, the word of God can also work in children who have grudges against their parents. It can make them kindhearted and forgiving sons and daughters. Isn’t it that God also forgives us when we turn back to Him? God forgives all our sins when we repent and submit ourselves to baptism.

ACTS 2:38 (KJV) says,

Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

If God forgives, why can’t you? Remember, God does not sin; He does not commit mistakes; yet He understands and gives considerations to us whenever we commit sins. He forgives us. If God, who does not commit any sin and does not make any mistake, is able to forgive, will it be difficult for you, who sin and make mistakes, to forgive your mother and your father?

MATTHEW 6:14-15 (KJV) says,

14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

When you forgive you will also be forgiven. All the bitterness, all the pain and anguish, and all the things that defile your heart can be cleansed by the word of God.

JOHN 15:3 (KJV) says,

Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.

Those are the words of the Lord Jesus Christ.

JAMES 1:21 (KJV) says,

Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.

Bear in mind, we cannot be with our parents all our lives. When they pass away, it would be then that you will realize how much you love them and how much you want them by your side. And you would wish that you had more time together.

At certain points in my life, I had also wished that my parents were still around. I love my parents very much. My father passed away in the year 2000, and my mother in 2003. During those years, I had so many things to attend to being a leader of a congregation; I had very limited time to spend with them. Until now, I miss both of them, especially when I happened to be in other countries. In my heart, I wished they were with me when I was in Hong Kong, Singapore, the USA, and in other places.


We have no power to turn back the hands of time; therefore, it is best that we make the most out of the time that our parents are still with us.

We only have one set of parents – the man and the woman that God used to bring us forth into this world. Make them feel your love. Doing this does not necessarily require you to spend a single centavo. You can show them your love by being caring and respectful to them at all times. And instead of grudges, let the feeling of appreciation and gratefulness for their unconditional love dwell and prevail in your heart. In addition, you can also show them your love by inviting them to join you in listening to the word of God.

It is good to love your parents; it a commandment of God. Just make sure that your love for them will not exceed your love for God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Be Prayerful: Christians Pray Without Ceasing

Why Christians Should Pray Without Ceasing

The Bible is teaching us of the rightful time, or instances, when we should pray. For one, we have to pray regularly; God commanded the Christians to pray day and night.

1 THESSALONIANS 5:17 (KJV) says,

Pray without ceasing.

What does that admonition mean? How are we going to pray without ceasing? Does it mean that we will devote all our time in praying, and we will no longer do other things, like working for a living, for instance?

This is how 2 TIMOTHY 1:3 (KJV) explains it:

I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers with pure conscience, that without ceasing I have remembrance of thee in my prayers night and day;

To pray unceasingly means to pray night and day. Meaning, before going to bed, or when you wake up the next morning, or before you start doing anything that you have to do on a given day, you need to pray first. If you were able to accomplish everything that you need to accomplish, bear in mind that you were able to do it because God helped you. So, it is but proper that you pray to Him, thank Him, before you go to sleep.

The Lord Jesus Christ urged the apostles to always pray, and He showed them what fervent and constant prayers can do through a parable.

LUKE 18:1-7 (KJV) says,

1 And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
2 Saying, There was a city judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man:
3 And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.
4 And he would not for a while: but afterward he said to himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;
5 Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.
6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.
7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

The Lord Jesus Christ narrated this parable to point out to the apostles that, if the unjust judge yielded to the continual supplication of a widow, all the more that God would listen to the prayers of His people. He said, “And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?”

It is an established truth in the Bible that Christians pray day and night.

Aside from praying before and after sleeping, there are also other instances that we are supposed to pray. We also have to pray before eating.

1 TIMOTHY 4:4-5 (KJV) says,

4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:
5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

Today, we can eat even the foods that the Israelites had been prohibited from eating like pork, for example. The Israelites had been prohibited from eating so many things, but during the time of the early Christians, the Apostle Paul taught them that, “every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused.”

In our time, in the Christian dispensation, God no longer prohibits us from eating meat. I just wonder why those who practice vegetarianism refuse to eat meat and fish when the Lord Jesus Christ, Himself, ate fish with His apostles when He was still here on earth! Not only the vegetarians, but even other religions in our time prohibit the eating of beef and pork. The word of God says, we can eat meat now. Only, we have to pray before eating. Ask God to bless the food that you are going to eat and practically everything that you are going to ingest.

We also ought to pray in times when we are heavily laden, when we are in a very difficult situation and we have nowhere to go, when we are troubled by so many problems and we do not know anymore what to do. These are the times that we need God’s help; these are the times that we need to pray.

PHILIPPIANS 4:6-7 (KJV) says,

6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

In life, we have our own cares and worries. We worry about so many things – problems, hardships, illnesses, finances, etc. But the word of God is very comforting and very reassuring. We need not worry about anything but by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God which passes all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

So, each time that you are beleaguered by problems and worries, pray to God. And if you are a servant of God, you ought to pray at any opportune time, in any situation. Always be prayerful.

MAY GOD BLESS YOU!

God Tests His Servants

Why does God allow suffering

Tests and trials come from God. God tries, or tests, His servants for very good reasons.

DEUTERONOMY 13:3 (KJV) says,

Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Tests and trials serve as a gauge for God to see if you are steadfast in your faith, if you are enduring, and if you love Him with all your heart and with all your soul. And once you are proven to be so, you will merit a priceless reward.

If we are to make a comparison, it is just like going to school wherein a teacher first gives his students a thorough discussion of the subject matter. Afterwards, he gives them a test or an examination to find out if they remembered and if they understood what he had taught them. And the result of the test will serve as the teacher’s basis in giving them grades that they deserve.

The same is true with God. He teaches us His words, and after that, He would test us if we understand and if we obey His teachings; He would test us if our faith will remain unmoved even in the midst of adversities and challenges. If we pass His test, we will then earn His trust.

Trust is not easily achieved; it is something that has to be worked for. Isn’t it that, even in an ordinary household, the owners of the house do not readily give their trust to their servant? The servant has to prove first to his masters that he is trustworthy, that he is not a kidnapper or a thief. Because it would be too risky if they would immediately entrust to him their house and their children when his trustworthiness has not been proven yet. But once the servant has proven his honesty and obedience, he eventually earns the trust of his masters.

God, Himself, also tests people; He searches their hearts and probes their minds to see if they are truthful and faithful, or not.

JEREMIAH 17:9-10 (KJV) says,

9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
10 I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.

And when He finds out that you are faithful, trustworthy, and you have no ill intentions, He will be with you.

After having tried, what does the Bible say?

1 PETER 1:6-7 (KJV) says,

6 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

According to the Apostle Peter, although tests and trials may sadden us, yet, we should not despair even if they come repeatedly or in succession because, if we are able to overcome all of those, we are partakers in the suffering of our Lord and we will merit honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.

God tries and tests us to see the depth of our faith; He wants to see if we will remain steadfast in our service and obedience to Him. And passing His tests will mean our salvation.

If the students who consistently passed all the tests and examinations given to them by their teachers qualify for graduation; on our part as servants of God, if we will be able to pass the tests that God gives us, if we will be able to prove to Him our faith and obedience to His words, and if we will be able to show Him that we love Him with all our heart and with all our soul, then we will merit the salvation of our soul.

1 PETER 1:8-9 (KJV) says,

8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
9 Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.

After successfully passing the trials and tests, we will receive the ultimate goal of our faith, which is the salvation of our soul. That is why it is very important that we deal with the tests and trials that come in our lives the biblical way.

So, whenever you go through difficult situations, whenever you experience trials, the best thing that you should do is pray. Do not be mad; do not despair. Just pray.

It’s just unfortunate that there are people who, when faced with tests and trials, become wild and violent. And instead of invoking God, they resort to alcohol and drugs. If this will be your attitude, you will never pass the test. And if you fail to pass the test, the consequence is, you will not merit any reward.

But if you want to be rewarded by God, you need to pass His tests and trials. Don’t forget, His reward is the salvation of your soul.

MAY GOD BLESS US ALL!

'Missing Years of Jesus Christ Mystery' Solved

The missing years of Jesus Christ

Some people claim that there seemed to be some missing details in the Bible’s presentation of the life story of the Lord Jesus Christ. According to them, what were only narrated was His birth and the time that He was already preaching, but the events that transpired after His birth until before the start of His ministry were not recounted.

And because of these alleged missing details, some pastors invented silly stories that state that during those times Christ was not in Israel. They said that He went to India and studied yoga there, and after that, He returned to Israel.

Of course, that is a big lie! Christ never left Israel. He was born there; He grew up there; He preached there; He died there; and He resurrected there. That is the full story of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible did not miss out any period in the life story of Christ, and never did He leave Israel.

From His birth until He was twelve years old, Jesus Christ was with his foster parents in Nazareth.


LUKE 2:41-51 (KJV) says,

41 Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the passover.
42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast.
43 And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem; and Joseph and his mother knew not of it.
44 But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day’s journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance.
45 And when they found him not, they turned back again to Jerusalem, seeking him.
46 And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions.
47 And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.
48 And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.
49 And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?
50 And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.
51 And went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart.

The Bible tells us that every year, Joseph and Mary went to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. The Jews were commanded to celebrate it in commemoration of their liberation from bondage in Egypt of the time that they experienced God’s salvation and peace.

The word “passover” in English, or pascha or paz in other languages, signifies peace. We have to remember that on the eve before the Israelites left the land of Egypt, the “destroyer” came to every Egyptian household and all their firstborns died. However, it did not enter the household of the Israelites; instead, it just passed over them. Hence, nobody among them died.

Passover implies peace. While there was great lamentation in all of Egypt due to the death of all their firstborns, there was peace in the dwellings of the Israelites because the angel of death or the “destroyer” passed over them.

That was the event that the Jews were commanded to celebrate every year. And for twelve years, Christ was always with His foster parents each time that they went to Jerusalem to celebrate it.

When Christ was twelve years old, there was an incident that happened. Joseph and Mary went to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover, and when they returned to Nazareth they did not notice right away that the twelve-year-old Jesus was not with them. All the while they were thinking that He was in company with their kinsfolk and acquaintance. When they found out that He was not with them, they went back to Jerusalem and looked for Him for three days until they realized that He was at the temple.

When Mary saw Him, she told Him, “Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.” The Lord Jesus Christ answered, “How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” Mary and Joseph did not understand what Christ said but verse 51 said, “And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth...” This implies that He joined them back to Nazareth.

It was in Nazareth where Jesus Christ grew up.


LUKE 4:16 (KJV) says,

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.

Christ wouldn’t be called a Nazarene if He did not grow up there. When He became a young man, what was Christ doing?

MARK 6:3 (KJV) says,

Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.

Christ already started preaching. He was called the carpenter because He inherited the craft and occupation of His foster father Joseph, who was a carpenter. The verse also referred to Him as the son of Mary because when He was already preaching, Joseph had already passed away.

LUKE 3:23 (KJV) says,

And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,

The Lord Jesus Christ was about thirty years of age when He started preaching. This means that from age twelve until He was about thirty years old Christ was in Nazareth.

The Jews knew that He was the son of Joseph, a carpenter. And being a son of a carpenter, they knew also that He never had any education. That was the reason why they marveled at His excellence when they heard Him preaching.

JOHN 7:15 (KJV) says,

And the Jews marveled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?

They knew that He was unlearned because they witnessed His life, from His youth until the time that He was already preaching. That is why it is preposterous to believe that He left Israel and went to India, and stayed there for eighteen years, because there were people who witnessed practically His entire life.


The Bible is complete in its account. Christ never left Israel. That was where He stayed; that was where He worked as a carpenter (in Nazareth); that was where He preached. After preaching, He was crucified. When He died, He resurrected after three days; He stayed with the apostles and taught them for forty days and forty nights; after forty days, the apostles witnessed His ascension to heaven. That is the full story of Christ; nothing is missing.

ACTS 1:21-22 (KJV) says,

21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.

Luke had a full understanding of everything that happened; and he never mentioned in his book that the Lord Jesus Christ was at any particular point not in Israel or that He was somewhere else.

LUKE 1:1-3 (KJV) says,

1 Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us,
2 Even as the delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word,
3 It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,

Luke, as an evangelist, conducted a thorough investigation of all things from the very first. That is why his account on the life story of the Lord Jesus Christ is complete and comprehensive, following proper chronology.

His gospel began with his introduction of Saint John the Baptist who, in turn, was the one who introduced Christ. And then he talked about the birth of Christ and where He was born, including the month and year of His birth.

He also recounted how, for twelve years, Christ joined His foster family as they went to Jerusalem yearly to commemorate the Passover; and also, how He worked as a carpenter. And when He was thirty years of age, He was baptized by John the Baptist, and then, He started preaching, etc. And finally, His death, resurrection and ascension to heaven. In other words, what Luke rendered was a complete narration of Christ’s life story. Nothing is missing.

May God bless you!

Our Bodies Are a Living Sacrifice

Our body is a living sacrifice to God

In our present dispensation, can anyone still offer a sacrifice to God? How? And what should we offer?

It is very evident today that many pastors ask their members to offer money and other material things for sacrifice. So it is but sensible to find out from the Bible if those are the rightful offerings and sacrifices that a Christian is required to offer God.

There are many sacrifices that can be read in the Bible, like the sacrifice of different kinds of animals. But it must be understood that when the Lord Jesus Christ came they were all stopped.

HEBREWS 10:5-7 (KJV) says,

5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body has thou prepared me:
6 In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast no pleasure,
7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.

When the Lord Jesus Christ came to earth He said that God no longer wants sacrifices and offerings similar to what the Israelites had done. Remember that the Israelites sacrificed animals and offered them to God for different intentions. Those sacrifices are no longer what God requires from us because He had given the body of the Lord Jesus to be sacrificed.

When the Lord Jesus Christ came, He had something in Him which was to be sacrificed, and that was His body. His body was nailed on the cross as a sacrifice for our sins. This is the reason why we do not need to sacrifice animals anymore because the ultimate sacrifice had been rendered by the Lord Jesus Christ.

HEBREWS 10:10 (KJV) says,

By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

What the Lord Jesus Christ had done was a sufficient sacrifice. The offering of His body was once for all. But why do many pastors today teach people to sacrifice animals and, most especially, money? It is because it will profit them; it is because they have a great love for money.

If we want to offer sacrifices now, we have to see to it that our sacrifices are in accordance with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

ROMANS 12:1 (RSV) says,

I appeal to you therefore, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.

This is the sacrifice taught to us by the Lord Jesus Christ. The verse tells us that we can present our bodies as a living sacrifice to God, which is our spiritual worship to Him. The question is, how can we present our bodies as a living sacrifice to God?

ROMANS 6:13 (KJV) says,

Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.

To become a living sacrifice, we have to use ourselves as instruments of God’s righteousness. We need to be the instruments of God in doing good to other people. Just like what Job did.

JOB 29:15 (KJV) tells us,

I was eyes to the blind, and feet was I to the lame.

Job used himself, his members or the parts of his body, to serve other people. He became an instrument of God’s righteousness. He became eyes to the blind and feet to the lame; meaning, he served the helpless and those in need. Job did good things to other people. In that way, he was able to sacrifice his own body as an offering of righteousness.

Therefore, in our dispensation, sacrifice is not only offering money and other material things as many pastors insist. According to the Scriptures, our body can be offered as a sacrifice to God by doing good and by showing kindness to others. AMEN!

Christ's Existence Began in Eternity, Not in the Womb of Mary. Period.

Jesus existed before he was born

When and where did the existence of the Lord Jesus Christ begin? Did His existence only begin when He was conceived by Mary, as what the Iglesia ni Cristo of Manalo believes?

This particular belief of this religious organization is expressed in an article featured in their official publication, Pasugo, which says,

Translation:
Had there been a Christ in the beginning before the establishment of this world? The answer is clear based on what the angel told Mary, that she would conceive and give birth to a son whose name would be called Jesus, Luke 1:31. From the answer given by the angel, the existence of Christ started in the womb of the Virgin Mary.


The INC of Manalo is claiming that Christ’s existence began only when Mary was told by the angel, “thou shalt conceive in thy womb” Implying that prior to Mary’s conception, there was no Christ yet that was in existence. But if you are to go over what Luke 1:31 says, “And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS” you will realize that the verse did not say that Christ’s existence started only in the womb of Mary.

Scientifically speaking, human life does not begin in the womb of the mother but from the loins of the father. A person’s identity starts from the bosom of his father. Although his DNA, which is the blueprint of our being, comes from both his mother and father; yet, biblically speaking, what comes from the father has a greater impact.

HEBREWS 7:9-10 (KJV) says,

9 And as I may so say, Levi also, who received tithes, payed tithes in Abraham.
10 For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchisedec met him.

Spiritually and scientifically, Levi started from the loins of Abraham; he was already in the loins of Abraham 450 years before his birth. This implies that scientifically speaking, one’s DNA may come from as far as the 7th to 10th generation backward.

According to science, a living cell is formed out of the 23 chromosomes from the father and another 23 chromosomes from the mother. Actually, all the cells in our body, like the cells in our bones, in our ligaments, in our flesh, etc. have 46 chromosomes. Only the sperm cell of a man and the egg cell from a woman contain 23 chromosomes each; all the other cells have 46. But when the sperm cell and the egg cell unite, a new cell with 46 chromosomes forms. This new cell will later become a fetus, which after nine months will be born as a new human being.

The point that I am trying to drive at is, although Levi was yet to be born 450 years later, he was already in the bosom of Abraham. Meaning, the DNA that was already in Abraham would be transferred to Levi 450 years later. Proving that literally and scientifically, our beings do not really begin from the womb of our mothers. That is why it is scientifically wrong to say that Christ’s existence started only when Mary conceived Him in her womb. And it is also very wrong, spiritually speaking. Why? Because Christ’s existence did not start here on Earth!

HEBREWS 10:5 (KJV) says,

Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me:

The verse is referring to the Lord Jesus Christ. “when he cometh into the world” means that He did not originate from this world. But when He came into this world, a body had been prepared for Him. What body was that? It was the body that was conceived by Mary. That was the body that started from Mary – the physical body of Christ.

JOHN 1:14 (KJV) says,

And the Word was made flesh...

If Christ did not begin from this world, where then?

MICAH 5:2 (KJV) says,

But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

According to the prophecy of Micah, from Bethlehem shall come forth He who would rule Israel, and this ruler came from everlasting, where the Father begot Him.

PSALM 2:7 (KJV) says,

I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.

The Father begot Christ, and it is one biblical fact that some people refuse to believe. But that is the truth. The Father had begotten His Son even before the creation of the world.

JOHN 3:6 (KJV) says,

That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

He that is born of the flesh is flesh; and he that is born of the Spirit is spirit. So the spirit can give birth.

HEBREWS 12:9 (KJV) says,

Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

God the Father is a spirit; He is also called, “the Father of Spirits.” In essence, God is called the Father of spirits because He had begotten His Son as a spirit being and have created spirit beings like angels!

JOHN 4:24 (KJV) says,

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

So that we won’t get confused, we always have to remember that there are two things that are in Christ: first, the Spirit that was begotten by the Father; and second, the flesh that was born of Mary. He that came into this world was the Son of God whom the Father had begotten, spiritually, in everlasting. And when the Son of God came into this world, He dwelled in the body of the son that was born of Mary.

What the INC of Manalo conceals from its members is the biblical truth that the Father has a Son whom He Himself had begotten.

HEBREWS 1:4-6 (KJV) says,

4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.
5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
6 And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him.

The first begotten of the Father is Christ, and He was only brought into this world. He did not originate here because He came from everlasting.

Now, where was Christ before He was begotten or brought forth by the Father?

JOHN 1:18 (KJV) says,

No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

Christ came from the bosom of the Father and He is the only begotten of the Father.

The New American Standard Bible has a better rendition of JOHN 1:18 as it is in conformity with the Greek Bible. It says,

No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.

In the original Greek scriptures, it says “the only begotten God.”

IΩANNHN 1:18 (Greek Wescott-Hort Transliterated):

Theon oudeis eoraken popote monogenes theos o on eis ton kolpon tou patros ekeinos exegesato.

“MONOGENES THEOS” = Begotten God

Christ was in the bosom of the Father. He was part of the Being of the Father in eternity. However, time came that the Father had to bring Him forth.

JOHN 17:5, 24 (KJV) says,

5 And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
24 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.

Before the creation of the world, Christ had already received and enjoyed the glory which came from the Father. What was that? It was the glory of being the Son of God. “Thou art my son,” the Father told Him, because He was the one who gave birth to Christ; He begot Him.

What others are skeptical about is the Father’s capability to bring forth a son simply because He is a male.

Actually, a male’s capability to give birth is both literally and spiritually possible.

Literally, a male can give birth.


It is the male seahorse that becomes pregnant and gives birth.

If a male’s capability to give birth is literally possible, all the more it is possible spiritually. God is Almighty, and because He is an Almighty God, I don’t think it would be difficult for Him to bring forth or to beget a Son.

PSALM 94:9 (KJV) says,

He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? he that formed the eye, shall he not see?

Human beings are capable of seeing and hearing. These capabilities have made mankind discover the principles that govern our visual and auditory senses, which we later applied when we invented the camera, an eye that captures images, and the microphone, an ear that listens and says aloud what it hears.

If we humans, despite our limitations, are able to come up with wonderful inventions such as the camera and the microphone, how much more the Almighty God! “He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? he that formed the eye, shall he not see?” Along those lines, could we not also ask, “He that created the womb, shall he not be able to bring forth a child?” Of course that is very possible with God.

The existence of the Lord Jesus Christ began in eternity with the Father. In fact, they were together during the creation of the world.

PROVERBS 30:4 (KJV) says,

Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? Who hath gathered the wind in his fists? Who hath bound the waters in a garment? Who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is his name, and what is his son’s name, if thou canst tell?

The Father and His Son were the ones who created everything, including man. When the first man was created, Genesis 1:26 says, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness...” The pronouns “us” and “our” imply that the Father was talking with another Being who was with Him, and that was His Son whom He had begotten in everlasting.

What the INC of Manalo can’t accept is the divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ. For them, there is only one God, and that is the Father. I do not disagree that there is one God, but we have to clarify who is that one God in the Bible. The Hebrew word that was used is Elohim, which the plural form of the singular noun Eloah, which means God. Therefore, Elohim means Gods. Elohim said, “Let us make man in our image.”

There is but one Elohim, but embodied in that one Elohim is not only the Father. Just like a music band. Although we consider a music band as one, yet it is composed of several musicians. It may comprise a keyboard player, a guitarist, a drummer, a violin player, a trumpet player, etc., but we call it a band. The same with family, which is also a singular noun, but in a family, there is the father, the mother, the children, and the grandparents.

What am I trying to say? The one God that the Bible mentions came from the Hebrew word Elohim, which denotes plurality. Meaning to say, it is not limited to the Father. Within the Elohim are the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

I am very certain that this is something which the ministers of the INC of Manalo will never teach their members. And neither will they read to them JOHN 1:18 in the original Greek version which referred to Christ as “Monogenes Theos” or “the only begotten God” because it will shatter their over-a-century-old doctrine that Christ is just a man whose existence began when Mary conceived Him in her womb.

However, the verses that I have cited are more than enough to prove that Christ’s existence did not begin in the womb of Mary because prior to her conception, He had already existed with the Father in eternity; He was with the Father throughout the process of creation; and He is a divine Being — the Bible calls Him “the only begotten God” or “Monogenes Theos.” AMEN!

How Religions That Abuse the Bible Cause Misery to People

Proofs that the Bible is Reliable and Truthful

One of the reasons why some people doubt the reliability and authority of the Bible as a source of the truth is the fact that many religions today, despite their claim that the Bible is the foundation of their faith, differ in their teachings, practices and beliefs. That is, they do not seem to have a common faith and they do not share a common set of teachings and doctrines.

To be frank, not all religions claiming that the Bible is the foundation of their faith are telling the truth. Most of them do not use the Bible as the basis of their faith instead they cleave and adhere more to dogmas which are never taught by the Bible, just like what the Catholic Church does.

The Catholic Church had invented so many dogmas which are without any biblical basis, and yet they are accepted and followed without question by Catholics. For example, they believe that Mary was sinless and immaculate, although the Bible never mentioned that Mary did not commit any sin at all. They also believe that when she died, even her physical body was brought to heaven. However, that is not biblical; it is even against the Bible.


Translation:
Catholic Life page 63
Nihil Obstat: Artemio G. Casas
Imprimatur: Rufino J. Santos
 
God wanted (or desired) that the mother of His Son have (or attain) perfect holiness. So as soon as Mary was conceived, God set her apart not to have inherited or original sin. This is what we call Immaculate Conception that was approved and declared by Pope Pius IX in 1854 as one of the dogmas of the Catholic faith.


Translation:
Catholic Life page 63
Nihil Obstat: Artemio G. Casas, Pbro.; Imprimatur: Rufino J. Santos, D.D.
Written by Gerard Linssen C.I.C.M., S.T.D.

When St. Mary died, she was brought up into heaven, soul and body. God did not allow the most holy body of Mary (whom He used for the human form of Jesus) to rot. The most awaited glory of the saints in the resurrection was given to the holy Mother of God at the very instance of her death. After she partook in her Son's suffering and death, she was given a special blessing to be immediately with Him in His resurrection and glory.

Disharmony due to doctrinal differences among many religions today is a manifestation of their lack of understanding of what the Bible says. If they were really of God, and if their respective faiths were all founded on the Bible, as they claim, such disagreements and differences would not exist. That only proves that the Bible is not really the foundation of their faith, but something else.

ACTS 4:11 (KJV) says,

This is the stone which was set at nought of the builders, which is become the head of the corner.

The foundation of the Christian faith is Christ. Christ is the chief cornerstone of the Christian faith. Christians must not have any other foundation but Christ. Many religions today have doctrinal issues because Christ is not the foundation of their faith, and neither do they regard the Bible as an authority of the truth. Instead, their faith is founded more on the beliefs and speculations of men, and on dogmas invented by men.

Indeed, the Bible is a credible and reliable source of the truth. Archeology, history, science, and many other fields of study, have proven that the Bible is an authority of the truth, be it spiritual, scientific, or historical. Let me cite an example to prove my point.

In the past, people used to believe that the earth is flat. Actually, until now, there are still some who believe that the earth is flat and not round. These people call themselves “flat earthers.” To prove to them that the earth is round, an experiment was conducted. They let a boat with a multi-colored banner sail toward the horizon. As it sailed farther, they saw how the boat gradually disappeared, until it finally vanished from their sight, proving that the earth is not flat. Because if the earth were flat, even if the boat had sailed very far, there would still be a faint and minute trace of it. But why did it disappear? It is because the earth has a curvature. If you will watch the live feed of the International Space Station, you will see the curvature of the earth.


Although the International Space Station is unable to capture the full image of the earth because of the instrument’s proximity to the planet, Apollo 11, which was launched by the USA to the moon in the late 60s, was able to take the first full- view photo of the earth. And that photo proved that the earth is round.


But even before the USA did it, Russia had already taken a photo of the earth as seen from a Russian Molniya satellite in 1966. The photograph likewise showed that the earth is spherical.


I would say that such a discovery was quite late already because more than 2,700 years ago, the Book of Isaiah had already hinted that the earth is round. The book of Isaiah was written in 723 B.C., and now it’s already 2,000 years after Christ. Adding 723 to 2019 would give us the number of years since the Book of Isaiah was written; it has been more than 2,700 years ago.

What did Isaiah write about the earth more than 2,700 years ago?

ISAIAH 40:22 (KJV) says,

It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth . . .

If the earth has a circle then it is not flat. It is just like the moon and the other heavenly bodies, except for meteors and meteorites. You will notice that almost all heavenly bodies are round. Implying that during their formation, there was an equal pressure all around. Try observing the bubbles that children play with. All bubbles are round because of the equal pressure around them. The universe is like that. There is an equal pressure in almost all heavenly bodies that is why most of them are round. The truth that the earth is round had been recorded in the Bible long before science discovered it, proving that the Bible is an authority of the truth.

When it comes to history, the Bible is even more reliable and more complete than any other history book. Why did I say so? In the history of the Assyrian Empire, it did not mention that Assyria once had a king by the name of Sargon. It was not recorded in their official documents but it was recorded in the Bible, specifically in ISAIAH 20:1 (KJV) which says,

In the year that Tartan came unto Ashdod, (when Sargon the king of Assyria sent him,) and fought against Ashdod, and took it;

The Bible mentions of an Assyrian king, Sargon. The Assyrians never knew him because his name was never mentioned in their history books. This is one reason why some Assyrian historians tried to discredit the Bible; they accused the Bible of speaking falsehood for mentioning a certain King Sargon whom they knew not.

Actually, the absence of the name of King Sargon in the history of Assyria is not enough reason to question the credibility of the Bible, because even Moses, a prominent biblical figure, was neither mentioned in the history of Egypt. And it is apparent that the Egyptian historians deliberately did not mention Moses and the Israelites in the history of Egypt, despite the fact that they enslaved the latter for more than 400 years, because doing so would put Egypt and the Egyptians in a very disgraceful and embarrassing situation. Remember that the Egyptians were defeated by the Israelites because God was on the side of the Israelites. The entire kingdom of Egypt was devastated by the curses of God. So, to spare themselves from shame and ridicule, they opted to discard the name of Moses in their historical records.

We can say that the historical documents of both Assyria and Egypt are incomplete and inaccurate because they scrapped out from their accounts the names of King Sargon and Moses, respectively. But the Bible, as a book of history, is complete and accurate.

In fact, physical evidence that proves that there was indeed an Assyrian king by the name of Sargon had been found. In 1842, a limestone relief, wherein the name and image of King Sargon were inscribed, had been discovered by French archeologist Paul-Émile Botta. The discovery of this artifact further proves that the Bible really speaks of the truth.


Another scientific truth that the Bible had spoken about 2,800 years ago concerns with what science calls “black holes.” A black hole is a spot in space where a giant star had exploded. Before science learned about it, the Bible had already foretold that there are things in heaven, like the stars, that shall wax old and perish. Even the processes of the universe like the explosion of stars (red giant) from which new stars would be formed, and the collision of galaxies from which new galaxies would also be formed, were already written in the Bible long before they were discovered by science. (Psalms 102:26)


What I have cited are but a few of the so many proofs of the Bible’s truthfulness and reliability. Without a doubt, the Bible is the foundation and source of all truths, be they physical, scientific, or spiritual.