Four Stages on How an Unbeliever Comes to Jesus Part 1

Song of Solomon highlights the intense love between King Solomon and his bride which represents Christ and his beloved church. Aside from these two main characters, Song of Solomon mentions another one which is also important in the poem. In translations like ESV they provided names for the lines to indicate who is speaking and to avoid further confusion. Not that the book itself didn’t provide identification to this character. The book calls this last character as the daughters of Jerusalem. To indicate that they are speaking, Bible translations place the names “people” or “others”. Aside from Solomon and his bride, the daughters of Jerusalem provide dialogues that can be compared to unbelievers. So let us now look at the four stages on how an unbeliever response to God and how we can help lead them to Christ:
“We will exult and rejoice in you; we will extol your love more than wine; rightly do they love you.” Song of Solomon 1: 4

Notice the word on the text “in you” not “with you”. Also there is a distinction “we” and “you” which if they are truly want to be part with the woman’s joy it should say “us”. We might encounter people like these that, they may be happy for your faith, but they seem to be not interested to be part of it. They may have their own beliefs however they don’t want any part of Christ or the church. Let us continue to pray for these individual that God may open their spiritual eyes.

“What is your beloved more than another beloved, O most beautiful among women? What is your beloved more than another beloved, that you thus adjure us?” Song of Solomon 5: 9

As we witness and live out our Christian testimony, people will notice us. They will ask questions. They will be curious on why we act and speak that way. In this phase, we might have a comfortable discussion with them about Jesus.

(to be continued next week…)

The Quotable Round-Up #16

In a recent article, 20 minutes of reading a book everyday makes a big difference in one’s life. If you don’t have the time to read why not include in your quite time. Instead of a devotional book, you can finish it with a book that can meet your spiritual need. A chapter will do. Currently I’m reading “God at Work” by Gene Edward Veith which has been profitable to me. I hope you will try it to and see the impact of it on your life. Lets continue the discussion next week on how to give 20 minutes of your daily time in reading and as promised your weekly dose of quotes:
“Everything, in all its exquisite and intricate details-things that others may consider trivial but are important to us-is governed by the overruling hand of God.”
–Derek W.H. Thomas
“Through highs and lows, better and worse, richer and poorer, sickness and health, you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you, when Christ becomes your all. A gospel-shaped life fills every space it takes with unconquerable faith and unfailing love.”
–Matt Chandler
“God wants us to offer ourselves to Him, turn from the ways of the world, and be transformed. Then we will have something, better than special revelations and words about the future-we’ll have wisdom.”
–Kevin DeYoung
“God’s Word is living and active. When we read the Bible, we hear from God with a confidence we find in no other book and from no other voice. We ca read the Scriptures knowing that this is what the Holy Spirit says.”
–Kevin DeYoung
“Wisdom is knowing God and doing as He commands. Foolishness, on the other hand, is turning from God and listening to yourself.”
–Kevin DeYoung
“God never assures us of health,success,or ease. But He promise something better: He promise to make us loving,pure,and humble like Christ.In short, God’s will is that you and I get happy and holy in Jesus.”
–Kevin DeYoung
“The most important issues for God are moral purity, theological fidelity, compassion, joy, our witness, faithfulness, hospitality, love, worship, and faith. These are His big concern. The problem is that we tend to focus most of our attention on everything else.”
— Kevin DeYoung

6 Ways to Fall in Love With Christ Part 3

Now we are at the last two ways on how to grow to love our Savior. Let us all pray and desire to have this in our Christian life.
“Come, my beloved, let us go out into the fields and lodge in the villages; let us go out early to the vineyards and see whether the vines have budded, whether the grape blossoms have opened and the pomegranates are in bloom. There I will give you my love. The mandrakes give forth fragrance, and beside our doors are all choice fruits, new as well as old, which I have laid up for you, O my beloved.” Song of Solomon 7: 11-13

True love is not just taking but giving. Love is not meant to be just words. It is also can be shown in action. Its shows how the extend of the affection you have for that someone special. Self sacrificing is deep love. The more you show less of self and more of the interest of others is your priority the more you know love. Do you love Christ enough to sacrifice your time, money and talent? You love the Savior because of His sacrifice for you on the cross and now it’s time to give it back by giving.

“What is your beloved more than another beloved, O most beautiful among women? What is your beloved more than another beloved,that you thus adjure us?
My beloved is radiant and ruddy, distinguished among ten thousand.His head is the finest gold; his locks are wavy, black as a raven. His eyes are like doves beside streams of water, bathed in milk, sitting beside a full pool. His cheeks are like beds of spices, mounds of sweet-smelling herbs. His lips are lilies, dripping liquid myrrh. His arms are rods of gold, set with jewels His body is polished ivory, bedecked with sapphires.Hebrew lapis lazuli His legs are alabaster columns, set on bases of gold. His appearance is like Lebanon, choice as the cedars. His mouth is most sweet, and he is altogether desirable. This is my beloved and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.” Song of Solomon 5: 9-16

Make Christ look good to others. Don’t just be satisfied that you’re the only one that is looking at His beauty, make others look at Him. Share the gospel and live out the gospel every day is the way to make Jesus look good.

The Quotable Round Up #15

Books do draw crowds in the recently concluded MIBF last September at the MOA SMX. Bookworms unite as we indulge ourselves over books that are on sale. I bought some and others are complimentary copies for book review. So I have books that will keep me occupy till next year! Anyways, MIBF did deliver the best book event for this year. How I wish I could attend those free seminars and workshop, attend the book signing of my favorite authors and buy more books. Nevertheless we had an amazing time. There are lots of things to improve with the event especially for the Christian publishers. Maybe it’s time for them to give out evangelism freebies to their customers. Maybe it’s time for them to publish books that tackle doctrine that is badly needed today. I think it’s high time for them to think on what they can do to reach other booths that present a false gospel. I want to see also the unity of the Christian publishers to heed in to action to be the light on that event. We Christians will shine brightest in the MIBF in the coming years if we come and unite to reach out those who are lost.
“Our aim in studying the Scriptures is not merely to know more ancient history or to learn useful life principles, but rather to be brought to see in a new way the glory of God in Jesus Christ and to bow our hearts before him in adoration and praise.”
— Iain M. Duguid

“The good news of Christ’s death and resurrection is not merely the power by which dead sinners are raised to new life—it is also the power by which God’s people are transformed into new creatures in him.”
–Iain M. Duguid

“Who does God exalt? He exalts those who fear His name. God exalts those who approach Him with reverence, self-emptiness, and ownership of their spiritual bankruptcy. And when godly fear humbles us, God in His mercy will exalt us.”
–Matt Chandler

“The incarnation was not so much a subtraction as it was an addition; the eternal second person of the Trinity took on Himself a human nature and joined His divine nature to that human nature for the purpose of redemption.”
— R. C. Sproul

“In eternity before creation, the Father initiated the concept of redeeming the creation He knew would fall. He designed the plan of redemption. The Son was given the assignment to accomplish that redemption. The Holy Spirit was tasked with applying Christ’s work of redemption to God’s chosen people.”
–R. C. Sproul

“If it were left to me to persevere in my Christian walk, I would fall and stumble in a moment. The One who really perseveres is God. He perseveres with His children and thereby preserves them. One of the chief ways in which God preserves His people is through the priestly intercession of Jesus.”
–R. C. Sproul

“The Father raised Jesus by the power of the Spirit, not simply for His own vindication, but for us. He was the first to be raised in this manner, being brought forth in a glorified state, but He will not be the last. Everyone who is in Christ Jesus will share in this resurrected glory. This is our hope. This hope is at the very heart and center of the Christian faith.”
— R.C. Sproul

6 Ways to Fall in Love With Christ Part 2

Now we go on to the # 4 of the ways to show how much we love Christ. God provided in His Word on how we can cherish and make much of Him more:

“The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes, leaping over the mountains, bounding over the hills. My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, there he stands behind our wall, gazing through the windows, looking through the lattice. My beloved speaks and says to me:”Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away,” Song of Solomon 2: 8-10

Like a lover who wants to please his beloved, we should be attentive always to God. Here are the things we should pay close attention if we want to be attentive to God:

a) To His voice:
“Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness,” Hebrews 3: 7-8

Be ready to listen to what He wants for you to do.

b) To His coming:
“I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.” Revelations 3:11

Be ready for His imminent coming and keep pressing to do His will.

c) To His calling:
Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, Ephesians 4:1

Be ready to walk to what He has set us to walk on.

(To be concluded next week)

The Quotable Round Up #14

The 36th Manila International Book Fair recently held at MOA SMX last September proves that Filipinos are not just book lovers but are concern with their spirituality. Majority of the exhibitors are offering Christian books and other resources. Aside from biblical Christianity, Roman Catholicism book companies are adding up every year. They have their own gimmicks just like those Christians booths. I also observe nuns and Catholic lay groups do check and buy books from booths of OMFLit, CLC Philippines, CSM Publishing and Lighthouse. I suggest that aside from inspirational books, Christian companies should dish out more solid and gospel centered materials for that specific event with affordable price or give out freebies for these friends. Roman Catholicism offers a hopeless gospel for their followers. Books that are inspirational are good but we should go for what will save them. Let us not let these people crossover eternity without them knowing the true message of Christ. My last MIBF observations will be next week but for now our quotes of the week:
“We should pray because prayer is a duty of every Christian; because prayer is a privilege; and because prayer is a powerful means of grace.”
–R. C. Sproul

“By continuing to study the Bible, we grow in faith and are able to stand firm in the truth.”
–R. C. Sproul

“If we don’t feel like going to church, we are to do it anyway. It’s a privilege to come near to God and to worship with other believers, but it’s also a sacred duty. I would be completely derelict in my duty if I didn’t tell you that God takes worship attendance very seriously, just as this admonition shows. So if we get up and don’t feel like going to church and want to go to the beach instead, we must say to ourselves: “Wait a minute, if I do this, I’m neglecting the God who has redeemed my soul from the pit. Therefore, I’m going to church.”
— R. C. Sproul

“All of us struggle as we evaluate our Christian lives. We can see changes in our lives for the good, but we also see the things we don’t want to see the things we don’t want anybody to see. So as we’re analyzing the states of our souls, we need to ask not where we were when we were born again or even how it happened. Rather, we need to ask whether there is any evidence of a change in the inner direction of our disposition, our attitude toward the things of God.”
–R. C. Sproul

“Spiritual shortsightedness robs us of gospel comfort that God desires us to enjoy.”
–Derek W. H. Thomas

“Application is important, but the gospel comes first. What is more, even after we have applied a passage rightly to our- selves in this way, we constantly need to return once again to the comfort of the gospel’s focus on Christ, for even as believers we will never live up to the standard of perfect holiness that God demands.”
–Iain M. Duguid

“Through the gospel we come to see both the true depth of our sin (and therefore that our earlier feelings of guilt were actually far too shallow), while at the same time being reminded of the glorious good news that Jesus is our perfect substitute who removes our sin and guilt.”
–Iain M. Duguid

6 Ways to Fall in Love With Christ Part 1

“ How do I love thee? “ The poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning asks this important question. Then she adds “Let me count the ways.” How do you love Christ? Can you count the ways? As we turn our Bibles to the Song of Solomon, we can see the intense love between King Solomon and her bride. We can compare it to the relationship of a Christian and Christ. So what are the ways to have this kind of love? The Song of Solomon unravels 6 ways:
“Behold, you are beautiful, my beloved, truly delightful. Our couch is green;”
Song of Solomon 1: 16

“..looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Heb. 12:2

Let us all focus our mind, heart and soul to Christ. Fixing our eyes to Him that we might follow Him. An uninterrupted fellowship with Him is our goal.

“Tell me, you whom my soul loves, where you pasture your flock, where you make it lie down at noon; for why should I be like one who veils herself beside the flocks of your companions?” Song of Solomon 1: 7

“One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.” Psalms 27:4

Let us be willing to inquirer to Him in His Word what He wants us to do. Pray to the everyday decisions we made. Ask for His will in every turning point of our lives. I choose Psalms 27: 4 to let us see the place which we could meditate and petition. It is in our churches. Not just the will for our life but what can we do for the ministry and the church are also the things we much consider asking.

“ As an apple tree among the trees of the forest, so is my beloved among the young men. With great delight I sat in his shadow, and his fruit was sweet to my taste. He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love. Sustain me with raisins; refresh me with apples, for I am sick with love.” Song of Solomon 2: 3-5

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?” Matthew 7: 25

We should be always open our empty hands to His daily provision. This is not an invitation for fatalism. This is leaning to His strength day by day. We know that good or bad He gave this to us to make much of Him. If dependence to Him is a gift, so is contentment.

(to be continued next week)

The Quotable Round Up #13

As I have said last week, the recently concluded Manila International Book Fair proves that Filippinos love books and spirituality. It’s a great venue to share the gospel and let Christ shine. Although that is the case, I also observe that majority of teens and young adults go for romance and anime themed books. Adults are more geared towards anything spiritual. With this observation, I think Christian publishers should further strengthen their reach for teens and young adults. I hope and pray they produce more books that are gospel driven. Now for our weekly dose of quotes:
“Every believer is called to ministry. We’re called to see that all of the tasks of the kingdom take place-that the poor are ministered to, the gospel is proclaimed, the Word of God is taught, and worship takes place.”
–R. C. Sproul
“A means of grace is a tool or instrument that God uses to strengthen and nurture us so that we grow in conformity to Christ. We don’t always think about service as a means of grace, but we grow as we serve. The more we are able to serve in the kingdom of God, the more Christ like we become.”
–R. C. Sproul

“We know that God is not restricted to the building, but we are aware that this is a sacred hour that God has set apart and declared to be a holy time of visitation between Himself and His people. So we leave worldly cares and concerns for a while and focus on God. We come to hear a word from God, and it is the pastor’s responsibility to make sure what we hear from the pulpit is the Word of God, not pop psychology. The power is in the Word, for it is the truth.”
–R. C. Sproul

“The primary reason to be in church is to worship the living God, and for this we must bring a sense of reverence and adoration for His transcendent majesty.”
— R. C. Sproul

“Once we believe into Christ and embrace Christ, then we are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, who is, in reality, Christ in us. So the mystical union is that once we are born of the Spirit and are given the gift of faith and move into Christ, then we are in Christ and Christ is in us.”
–R. C. Sproul

“The whole basis for our relationship to God is grace. It is not something we earn or deserve or purchase. It is a gift.”
–R. C. Sproul

“The atoning death of Christ gave us a new, freer kind of access to the Father. Christ won for us peace with God and the end of estrangement.”
— R. C. Sproul