Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Supply And Demand

Supply and demand is perhaps one of the most fundamental concepts of economics. It is the backbone of a market economy. The demand in the economics sense refers to how much (quantity) of a product or service is desired by buyers at a certain price. Supply represents how much the market can offer or simply the quantity of a product of services supplied in the market at a certain price.

The relationship between demand and supply underlies the forces behind the allocation of resources. In the open market economy, demand and supply theory will allocate resources in the most efficient way possible by which an equilibrium level is achieved.

The concept of demand and supply in God’s new testament economy is viewed quite differently. It is the fundamental concept of law and grace. For the law demands and grace supplies.

Law Demands
Due to disobedience, the Jews continued to uphold and kept the law of Moses, refusing to accept Christ as the Son of the living God. Since the law demands it is difficult to continue to keep the law of Moses.

In Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus said, “Come to Me, all you who labour and heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Jesus was actually speaking to the Jews, who were labouring to keep the law of Moses. They were heavy laden by the heavy yoke of the law and wearied from trying to continue to keep all the commandments. No wonder Paul said the “letter kills, but the Spirit gives life” (2 Cor 6:3). The letter which kills is the letter of the law, which only requires of man but is unable to supply man with life.

Grace Supplies
Since the letter of the law was weak it was set aside and replaced by the grace of the rich supply of Chirst, which gives life and life more abundantly.

By the blood of our Saviour, Jesus has made us perfect in the presence of God. We can now come boldly to God for the rich supplies by the grace of righteousness. “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” (Gal 5:1). Also Heb 4:16.

The Grace supplies the enjoyment of our daily renewing of life supply and participation in Christ in the new covenant (See Nov 2008 article, “New Covenant”). “For His yoke is easy and His burden is light!”

Friday, April 9, 2010

Jonah & Whale

It has been a while since my last article. I have been very busy. Sorry.

Anyway, sometime in November 2009 I led a group of tourists to South Africa. To my surprise South Africa is a very beautiful, developed and scenic country. It reminded me so much of the countries of New Zealand and Australia. There are places after visiting once is just enough; South Africa is not one of those.

During my tour from Cape Town to Johannesburg, we had an opportunity stop at a small town known as Hermanus. It is a major tourist destination in South Africa because it is simply the best place in the world to watch whales there. It was amazing watching the whales at such a close distance. I could not resist but thought of the story of Jonah in the Bible.

The story of Jonah and the whale is too important to be left as just a children’s story. There are lots of life lessons in the Book of Jonah for children and adults. Jonah’s story teaches us about obedience, willingness of spirit, gratitude, compassion and God’s patience and mercy.

God wanted him to preach to the Ninevites but he hopped on a boat headed for Tarshish instead, attempted to run away from God. During the night, a huge storm came and rocked the boat wildly. The crews were very afraid and beginning to pray to their gods. They started to draw lots to determine who was causing the uproar. The lot fell on Jonah and he requested to be thrown overboard.

As Jonah was sinking, a big fish (whale) swallowed him. Jonah sat in the whale’s belly for three days and nights. He spent that time in prayer, thanking God for saving him. He realized the miracle that God has effected to save him and he was truly grateful. Here we see God’s great mercy and compassion. He could have let Jonah suffer the consequences of his actions and drown. Yet, God intervened and spared Jonah’s life.

This same issue is with us today. We often complain to God about the consequences of our sins but do we ever wonder how often He has spared us from consequences? I rarely ever think about that. There are times where we even doubted God’s guidance in our daily living. We question God’s existence and power. We begin to lose the first love. How wretched we are!!!? “For the good that I would I do not; but the evil which I would not, that I do.” (Rom 7:19).

May God have mercy on us and may we be revived in Christ daily.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

What is Church?

Relevant Bible Verses:-

1) Rev 2 & 3

2) Matt 16:16 Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

I am not surprised many Christians, even those older ones have very limited understand of church. It is difficult to know the church because Satan, the subtle enemy, is working very hard to blur the eyes of many Christians to see what the real church is. In the concept of many Christians, the church is a physical building, or a bungalow, or a cathedral with a high tower and a cross on it, where they congregate every Sunday to worship and listen to sermons. Sadly, they hardly know anything of the church as revealed in the Bible.

The church is essentially the Body of Christ, the fullness of Christ. It is the expression of Christ and through the Body of Christ, we could then see how God is realized by us and how He is actually expressed and manifested, both locally as well as universally.

Jesus is the anointed One (Matt 16:16). The anointed One in today’s term simply means the appointed One. So, God has appointed or anointed Christ to carry out His eternal purpose and economy on earth. Jesus is not only our Savior to save us, but also Christ as the appointed One to carry out God’s eternal plan. In order for Christ to carry our God’s eternal plan, He needs the church. In order to produce the church, there are two very important aspects Christ needs – redemptive aspect and imparting of life aspect (Read Sept 08 "Blood Is Thicker Than Water"). What I am saying here is that after redeeming the fallen created man through the cleansing blood of Christ, He had to impart life through the life-giving Spirit into the redeemed and regenerated ones. These redeemed and regenerated people become the living members (Eph 4:16) of the Body of Christ – Church. As the church, the Body is the means by which Christ carries out God’s eternal purpose and plan. Therefore without church, Christ cannot accomplish God’s eternal plan and purpose.

We shall now focus in details the danger of some churches not aligning their plan with God’s eternal purpose. The Bible has warned us not to be drifted away. We have to continue to fall “under the shadow of the wing” (Psalm 17:8). When we are within the shadow of the wing, we must be close to God.

In Revelation 2 & 3, we are being warned of the danger some churches had fallen out of God’s plan. There are seven different churches with different set of characters, which we can learn from. The seven churches in the province of Asia:-

1. The church in Ephesus - Has forsaken the first love. (Rev 2:1-7)

2. The church in Symrna - Under persecution and being hypocrite. (Rev 2:8-11)

3. The church in Pergamum - Has resorting to eating food offered to idols and by committing to sexual immorality. (Rev 2:12-17)

4. The church in Thyatira - Has resorted to apostasy. (Rev 2:18-29)

5. The church in Sardis - In reformation but has gone to “sleep” or dead. (Rev 3:1-6)

6. The church in Philadelphia - The Holy One, the true One, the One who has the key of David.....the One who kept the Word and have not denied His name...” (Rev 3:7-13)

7. The church in Laodicea - Has degraded, being lukewarmed. (Rev3:14-22)

As living members of the Body of Christ - Church, we must protect and continuously aligning ourselves in God's eternal plan. Avoid being ensnared in any of the enemy's traps as illustrated in Revelation, except the church in Philadelphia, the One who kept the Word and have not denied His name. For those who may have been classified as the church in Philadelphia, we must not be too proud but instead humbling ourselves before God of His Grace and Mercy.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Peace of God and God of Peace

Relevant Bible Verses

1) Phil 4:6 In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.

2) Phil 4:7 And the peace of God, which surpasses every man’s understanding, will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.

3) Phil 4:8-9 Finally, brothers, what things are true, what things are dignified, what things are righteous, what things are pure, what things are lovely, what things are well spoken of, if there is any virtue and if any praise, take account of these things. The things which you have also learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things; and the God of peace will be with you.


“Easier said than done”, is a statement made on something seems like a good idea but it would be difficult to do in practice.

In Phil 4:6, it mentions that we should not be worried and anxious about anything in our life but instead by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let our requests be made known to God. Then the Peace of God, which surpasses all our understanding, will guard our hearts and our thoughts in Christ Jesus.

But are we completely free from anxiety after surrendering our worries to God in prayer? I am sure many will still have anxiety and worries, albeit reduced, after letting our requests be made known to God. This is due to our half heartedness believing in God’s blessing and promises. There must be a genuine total surrender both in reality and practicality in trusting the Lord to completely free us from anxiety.

As believers, we should not only think on the things mentioned in verse 8; we should also practice the things which we have learned, received, heard, seen and read in the scriptures.

In verse 9, it closed with the word, “And the God of Peace shall be with you.” Actually, this is both the promise and blessing of God. The God of Peace is the source of all the good things mentioned in Phil 4:8-9.

Our Lord is both the Peace of God and God of Peace. Therefore, by trusting the Lord in all aspects of our life we shall gain to enjoy God and Peace at the same time.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Pressing Toward the Goal

Relevant Bible Verses:-

1) Phil 3:12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.

2) Phil 3:13 Brothers, I do not account of myself to have laid hold; but one thing I do: Forgetting the things which are behind and stretching forward to the things which are before,

3) Phil 3:14 I pursue toward the goal for the prize to which God in Christ Jesus has called upward. Let us therefore, as many as are full-grown, have this mind; and if in anything you are otherwise minded, this also God will reveal to you. Nevertheless whereunto we have attained, by the same rule let us walk.

I have been pretty busy lately and was not able to up-date my blog. But I know I have a "race" to run for the ultimate goal. This article is probably issued at the most appropriate timing as I am also in the "race" along with many Christians around the world. Therefore, we must all "press on".

Even though Paul had experienced and gained Christ exceptionally, he was not afraid to admit he was still struggling to attain the full knowledge of Christ in perfection. However, despite of his imperfection, he continued to encourage the believers to focus on the race in Christ (Phil 3:12).

As Christians, pursuing after Christ should and must be our life primary goal. We cannot be otherwise minded. Walking closer with God will not only make us understand and discern what is right and what is wrong and what is imperative, but will also allow God to align our mind to His centre core economy plan, a mind focused on the pursuing of Christ.

This attractive and deceptive material world can easily distract many Christians from focusing on God’s goal. We need to pursue God’s unique goal and His plan for us so that we will not be distracted, holding on to the unshakable foundation of truth. In Phil 3:13, Paul warned us of the danger of holding on to the “things of the past”. Dwelling on our past experiences can frustrate us from moving forward to the things which are before us.

Lets us continue to pursue toward God’s unique goal and the prize – Christ for our ultimate enjoyment and full knowledge of Christ in maturity.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Moving Forward

Relevant Bible Verses:-

1) Eph 4:13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;

2) Phil 3:13-14 Brothers, I do not account of myself to have laid hold; but one thing I do: Forgetting the things which are behind and stretching forward to the things which are before, (14) I pursue toward the goal for the prize to which God in Christ Jesus has called me upward.

3) Eph 3:8 To me, less than the least of all saints, was this grace given to announce to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ as the gospel


There are many born again Christians who have left the church and simply refused to continue to embrace the faith in Christ. Majority of these people would be too polite to express the real reason(s) for not returning to the flock. Some have gone to the extent to even condemn and discourage others from believing in the fellowship of Christ.

For centuries now, God has mentioned that the fundamental fault with man is his own very heart, there is something twisted, almost demonic within the very heart and soul of human being. Remember it was disobedience that caused man to fall. The insatiable human heart desires to have plenty of the world’s material things and quest for power continues to dominate mankind, blurring their vision to focus on God’s great economy and plan.

Therefore it is important to nurture and saturate the human heart with the Word of God building the unshakable foundation of truth. “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming.” (Eph 4:14)

Satan’s cunning ways and persistency in instilling negative thoughts in our mind using religion, culture, philosophy and law that we are not worthy enough to serve the Holy and Gracious God. The unnecessary guilt conscience of not worthy stance and self condemnation naturally have caused people to adopt quickly the “law” to self correct in justification to make right with God.

In the above verses, Paul mentioned of forgetting the past. He encouraged the believers to stretch and move forward for the ultimate fullest enjoyment of Christ in the millennial kingdom as a reward to the victorious runners of the New Testament race. Dwelling on the old teachings can hinder and frustrate our further pursuing after Christ. It is sad we still see many modern day Christians, even the matured ones continue to adopt the old teachings and put upon themselves the burden of the law as bondage on their shoulders.

It is important that we do not fall back to the old teachings (Judaism). We need to keep moving forward with Christ in the new covenant. Christ has come to fulfill the law. The old law has been canceled on the cross (read Hebrews 8). We cannot be justified by observing the law, but by faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Not Good Enough

Relevant Bible Verses:-

1) Rom 8:1-2 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

2) 2 Cor 12:9 My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness

3) Phil 1:20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.

For centuries now, Satan has been using religion, philosophy, and culture to possess people and to keep them from experiencing Christ in fullness. Although the majority of the simple people (Christians included) are influenced strongly with material things, the more thoughtful ones are hooked by religion, philosophy, culture and self-righteousness.

Overcoming the influence of material things is easier. But overcoming religion, philosophy, culture and self-righteousness are more complicated as these are ingrained within our soul and inner being.

I am sure many Christians would have experienced Christ to a certain degree in their walk with God, but sadly our experience has been severely impeded and constantly blocked by our own philosophy and domestic logic. Satan’s cunning ways and persistency in instilling thoughts in our mind that we are not worthy enough to serve the Holy and Gracious God, thereby making us to think of the “not good enough” position or self-condemnation within our own very heart.

We should be reminded that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

The next time you feel like God can't use you, just remember:-

Noah was drunk
Abraham was too old
Isaac was a daydreamer
Jacob was a liar
Leah was ugly
Joseph was abused
Moses had a stuttering problem
Gideon was afraid
Samson had long hair and was a womaniser
Jeremiah and Timothy were too young
David had an affair and was a murderer
Elijah was suicidal
Isaiah preached naked
Jonah ran from God
Naomi was a widow
Job went bankrupt
Peter denied Christ, 3 times
The disciples, fell asleep while praying
Martha worried about everything
The Samaritan woman was divorced, more than once
Zaccheus was too small
Paul was too religious
AND...Lazarus was dead!

We have no more excuses to blame on our inferiority complex and inability to be used by God.

Isn't doing nothing is another form of death?