Wednesday Prayer Meeting on 28 Jun 2017, 8pm

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Jun 252017
 

prayer2016

Prayer Meeting

Sp: Dn. Tan Wee Boon
– Matthew 18:20

 A Church that prays together, stays together in unity!

Schedule Wednesday night intentionally and pray for our leaders and ministries.

Our pastors, elders, deacons and those serving in ministry need your prayers and support.
Have a prayer item? Let your needs and petition be known and prayed for at the prayer meeting.

Announcements (25 Jul 2017)

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Jun 252017
 

ToddlersClub (Every 3rd & 4th Sunday, 10-11am):  We would like to encourage all parents to bring your toddlers (age 2-3) to the Toddlers’ Club so as to feed them God’s Word from a tender age.  Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it  (Proverbs 22:6).

Session Planning on 1 Jul, Sat @ 9am-1pm:  Session members please attend.

SAF Anniversary Meeting (15 Jul, Sat) @ 4.30pm-6.30pm at Church Chapel.

Gospel Sunday on 30 July:  Please pray and invite your friends and loved ones to this service.  Speaker:  Eld Sim Chee Seng.

R500 Conference (9-12 Aug):  Registration has started.  Please sign up with Sis Min Ling at the Fellowship Hall if you are interested.  Registration closes on 23 July.

Cambodia Mission Trip (22-26 Dec):  Please register your interest with Ps Gan or Sis Carol Tan latest by end July.

25 Jul 2017 – Memorizing God’s Word

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Jun 252017
 

Memorizing God’s Word by Dn Ronnie Tan

Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

(Psalm 119:11)

Nowadays, we can easily turn to our print Bibles or online Bibles in our mobile phones or iPads and tablet PCs to refer to God’s Word.  However, what if we are without our Bibles and there is no Internet network available?  In such situations, are we able to recite some Bible verses without anything to aid us?

Memorizing God’s Word may be tough as we grow older.  I am one who will be the first to admit it.  Even among our youngsters, some would jokingly admit that they can recite two verses easily, and these are John 3:16 and of course, John 11:35!

Admittedly, it might be easier to memorize Bible verses when we were young. A number of verses I could recite from memory today were those I learnt during my Sunday School days as a young boy and then as a teenager. Back then, the Sunday School teachers and Junior Fellowship leaders actually made verse memorization as one of those things one has to pass in order to earn a badge.  It was not easy to do it but some of us actually managed to memorize dozens of verses and even entire portions of Psalms, such as Psalm 23 and Psalm 100 over the course of two to three years.

All of us have different sets of gifts that God gave us.  Some are good at Mathematics while others are bad at it.  Conversely, some are good at History while others would steer clear from the subject.  However, God’s Word in Psalm 119:11 and Psalm 119:105 give us two reasons why we should memorize verses – to keep us from sinning and to show us the right way.

Another reason for keeping God’s Word in our hearts – to serve as an indication of the extent of our love for God’s law.  Psalm 119:97 says “O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.”  In other words, do we really love God’s Word to the extent that we are prepared to memorize what He has said in the Bible?  Even the Devil, who hates God, can recite (and twist) God’s Word to his advantage, as was evident when he tried to tempt Christ in the desert. (Matt 4:1-11)  Besides, there is anecdotal evidence that members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, a cult group, actually spend a year or two memorizing most, if not the entire Bible!

On our part, do we know God’s Word enough to be able to detect when doctrinal lies coated with half-truths are presented to us by cults?  Without knowing God’s Word, it would be hard to do so, especially when we are challenged to quote the verses, if not the scriptural texts, from which we draw our positions on doctrinal issues.

Years ago, when the Internet was unheard of, a friend of mine leaving for Bob Jones University for further studies said this to me before he left, “Ronnie, make sure you write to me as often as you can.”  I kept my word and in one of his replies, he told me that when he was homesick, he would “religiously” re-read the letters which I and others had sent him because they meant a lot to him.  Even as I recalled what he said, it dawned on me that if someone’s letter means a lot to another person, does God’s Word mean anything to us?  Do we love God’s Word enough to try to keep His word in our hearts?

To keep us from sinning should be a good motivation for us to memorize God’s Word too. During my NS days, my officer once told me, “Tan, go and help me buy a pack of cigarettes.” His request was, in a way, an order I had to obey.  I then recalled a fellow Christian testifying how he refused to obey a similar order from his officer because he recalled the latter part of 1 Tim 5:22 saying, “…neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.”  I thanked God for recalling this verse and I said, “Sir, I cannot buy for you.”  He was bemused by my response and asked, “Why not?”  I replied rather innocently, “Sir, how can I help poison my officer?”  To cut a long story short, my officer chuckled and shared my response with his fellow officers, two of whom were Christians, and they all had a good laugh.  After that, my officer never asked me to buy cigarettes for him again.  In this instance, God’s Word hidden in my heart stopped me from sinning against Him.

It is not easy to memorize verses, especially the long ones or even entire Psalms.  However, if we set our hearts to achieve that which seems tough, or even impossible, God will help us, (Philippians 4:13), especially if His word means a great deal to us!

Announcements (18 Jun 2017)

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Jun 182017
 

Blessed Father’s Day:  The Session wishes all fathers in our midst a Blessed Father’s Day!

Session Planning (1 Jul @9.00am-1pm):  All Session members, please attend.

R500 Conference (9-12 Aug):  Members are strongly encouraged to attend.  Please register with Sis Min Ling at the Fellowship Hall.  Registration closes on 23 July 2017.

Feedback on the future challenges of the Church starts today and closes on 30 Jul 2017.

Gospel Sunday on 30 July:  Please pray about inviting your friends and loved ones to the Service.

Cambodia Mission Trip (24-28 Nov):  Please register your interest with Ps Gan.

18 Jun 2017 – Christianity without Hypocrisy (Part 2)

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Jun 182017
 

Christianity without Hypocrisy (Part 2) – By Rev Gabriel Gan

II.  Praying to Be Heard (vs. 5-8)

The second of Jesus’ examples of religious piety and the one he deals with at greatest length is prayer. He assumes his disciples will pray, but he is concerned about how prayer is done.  Jesus warns us not to seek man’s praise, assures us that those who do will get only an earthly answer, commands us to perform such acts privately, and promises that God, who hears in secret, will reward us openly.

Jesus warns of two wrong types of prayer.

  1. Ostentatious prayer (vv.5–6)

In synagogue services public prayer was customarily led by a male member of the congregation who stood in front of the ark of the law and discharged this responsibility. A man could easily succumb to the temptation of praying up to the audience/congregation. The acceptable clichés, the appropriate sentiments, the well-pitched fervency, all become tools to win approval, and perhaps to compete with the chap who led in prayer last week.

But whenever a person prays in order to enhance his own reputation, God is not listening.

We have an example of this in Christ’s parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector. The Pharisee “stood up and prayed about himself” (Lk  18:11). He had his reward; he was noticed by the people standing by. They must have said, “Look at that Pharisee! How pious he is!” Yet Jesus said that it was the tax collector who was justified. He did not call attention to himself but rather “stood at a distance,” praying, “God, have mercy on me, a sinner” (v. 13). He had his reward in heaven.

 

  1. Repetitious prayer (vv. 7–8)

The second kind of wrong prayer is repetitious prayer, which Jesus identifies as characteristic of Gentiles or pagans. The prayers of the priests of Baal in the days of Elijah are an example. They called on Baal “from morning till noon,” calling louder and louder and even “slashed themselves with swords and spears” (see 1 Kings 18:25–29). But Baal did not hear them.

Jesus is not condemning long prayers in these verses since he himself spent long nights and many hours in prayer.  What he is condemning is “vain repetition.” Sadly, many prayers are like this. Indeed, we can even be idle in our repetition of the so-called Lord’s Prayer, which follows these verses.

What, then, is to characterize our prayers?  Jesus mentions two things. First: “But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou has shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly(6:6).  We will comprehend Jesus’ point better if we each ask ourselves these questions: Do I pray more frequently and more fervently when alone with God than I do in public?  Do I love the secret place of prayer? Is my public praying simply the overflow of my private praying?

How, then, should we pray? Jesus himself gives us a wonderful example, usually referred to as “The Lord’s Prayer,” but more appropriately designated “The Lord’s Model Prayer.”

II          The final “act of righteousness” Jesus discusses is fasting. In the Jewish calendar there were certain special fasts in which everybody participated. These took place in connection with the high feast days, such as the Day of Atonement or the Jewish New Year. Fasts might also be called when, for example, the autumn rains failed to appear; these fasts, too, would be national in scope. In addition, many individuals would fast at other times, allegedly for reasons of moral and religious self-discipline, and especially as a sign of deep repentance and brokenness before the Lord.

But what began as spiritual self-discipline degenerated into an occasion for pompous self-righteousness. Some would wear glum expressions on their faces, go about their business unwashed and unkempt, and sprinkle ashes on their head, all to inform peers that they were fasting. What was once a sign of humiliation became a sign of self-display.

The issue is not how often we should fast. It is how we fast and why.  “But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face; Thou thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly. (vv. 17–18).  As far as the “how” is concerned, we are to do it privately before God and not to seek attention from men. Once the believer has told someone about his fasting, God is looking the other way. However, God is conscious of all forms of self-denial for His sake and is pleased with His faithful servants.

Conclusion

The question is raised in its most practical form: Whom am I trying to please by my religious practices? Honest reflection on that question can produce most disquieting results.

Genuine piety is superlatively attractive. But the real beauty of righteousness must not be tarnished by sham.  May God help us!

Announcements (11 Jun 2017)

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Jun 112017
 

Church Camp Briefing:  Those who have registered for Church Camp, please stay back in the sanctuary for a short camp briefing immediately after the Worship Service TODAY. The Sunday School Class under Bro Mia Hock will begin a study of the Gospel of Luke from TODAY, 11 June 2017.  All are welcome! Combined B-P Churches […]

11 Jun 2017 – The Different Wills of God

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Jun 112017
 

The Different Wills of God by Elder Yap Chee Kian Romans 12:2 (KJV) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Introduction People often asked “What is the will of God […]

Announcements (04 Jun 2017)

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Jun 042017
 

Wed Prayer Meeting@8pm:  Members, especially students on holidays are encouraged to come and pray as a Church.   The Church that prays together, stays together! Church Camp Briefing:  Those who have registered for Church Camp, please stay back after the Service for a short camp briefing next Lord’s Day, 11 June 2017. Church Camp Bus List: It’s up […]

04 Jun 2017 – Christianity Without Hypocrisy (1)

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Jun 042017
 

Christianity Without Hypocrisy (1)  Introduction Jesus has described the incredibly high standard of righteousness required of those who would be his disciples: (1) explaining that it must be superior to that of the Pharisees and teachers of the law, (2) describing it in six representative areas, and (3) insisting that his disciples pursue perfection, since […]

Announcements (28 May 2017)

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May 282017
 

Praise God for the 15 Session Members who have been elected into the Session 2017 – 2020.  May the Lord enable them to serve Him faithfully. Session Meeting (Today @1.45 pm):  All newly elected Session members, please meet in the Conference Room. A Note of Thanks to those who served in the last Session.  May […]