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CSI Good News
(Church of South India Good News)



 

Vol. 2 / Issue 45 / December 14 2000

Contents of this issue

Editorial
Savior of the world is born
The Saviour and the Redeemer
The power of Praise and Worship songs

News Items (Common to all issues) :
Through the Valley of Death & other Books
Download Articles in Handheld Computers
Kids Page - Free Tutorials
Hindi / Malayalam/Tamil Bible Online
Your Spam Folder
Your Feedback

Editorial

By Sherly Isaac

2 Corinthians 8:9, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.”

Hardly ten days is left for Christmas. We are soon going to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. Very often we forget the purpose of our Lord Jesus Christ coming to this world and taking birth in a manger as a poor child. The Bible says, “though He was rich, yet He became poor for our sakes so that we may become rich.”

When God created Adam and Eve, He gave them all the blessings and made them prosperous. He gave them all the riches - physical and spiritual. But something terrible happened that we find in Genesis 3rd chapter. They disobeyed God and so they lost all the blessings of God. They were like king and queen in the Garden of Eden. They had everything in their lives - peace, joy, happiness. They did not need to do any hard work for living and not only that, they never knew what death was. Life was easy and blessed, but one mistake made them poor. They lost their peace, joy and happiness. They lost the fellowship of almighty God. They became dead in spirit and they lost the way to heaven. Sin came in this world and along with that; physical as well as spiritual death.

Every person is born in this world as a sinful and spiritually dead person. That’s why we need a savior who can save us from our sinful nature. And Jesus to whom belongs all the richess and glory, all the power and might, came down in the form of a man so that we could come out of our poverty, from our spiritual death, from our sins and filth and have a wonderful life. Jesus came down to undo the curse which came on Adam and Eve and through them to the whole humanity. But the story of Jesus is not complete with His birth. It goes beyond that. His story is incomplete unless we speak of His great sacrifice which was His prime purpose on this earth. He took on Him all the curse, pain, sin, sickness, tears, heartbreaks and finally the fear of death by His sacrifice on the cruel cross and by shedding His precious blood for me and for you. Today we have the blessed hope of redumption because Jesus did the work of salvation on the cruel cross. We need not to go through the punishment for our sin or sinful acts but we can obtain forgiveness of sins through the shed blood of Jesus as we read in 1 John 1:7, “…and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.”

Yes, Jesus came to give us life full of blessings, peace, joy and happiness in this world and in the world to come. He came to remove pain from our hearts and to deliver us from every bondage, sinful nature and even from the death – eternal death. He came to give us eternal life. In this Christmas season let us remember the purpose of the coming of Jesus in this world and be grateful and thankful for what He did for us. If you have never invited Jesus in your life, this is the time to invite Him in your heart and in your life. When He comes in, He will change everything. He will take all your sins, burdens, pain, worry and even fear of future. He will give you the peace that passes all understanding. He will fill you with Joy that this world can not give.

We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy and blessed New Year. A very special greeting card is waiting for you at this address:

Savior of the world is born

By Sherly Isaac

Isaiah 43:3, “For I am the LORD your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I gave Egypt for your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in your place.”

Again we read in Isaiah 43:11, “I, even I, am the LORD, And besides Me there is no savior.”

Yes, the whole Bible claims that the God of the Bible is our Savior and there is no other savior besides Him. And we read in New Testament about the birth of our Savior in Luke 2:10-11, “Then the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”

Yes, the almighty God who is the Savior of the world came down in the form of a man to save us. Why He should come down in this world?

1. To save us from our sins:

Jesus came to save us from our sins and sinful nature. The Bible says in Matthew 1:21, "And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins."

It is impossible for us to come out of our sins or sinful nature by our own effort. When sin came in this world, God gave His Laws to Moses and told him how to sacrifice and to get rid of their sins. They used to sacrifice the lamb and shed the blood of the lamb on the altar for the remission of the sins of the people. Because the Bible says in Hebrew 9:22, “And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.”

But sacrificing on the altar was not a permanent remedy for the remission of our sins as we read in. Hebrew 10:11-13, “And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool.”

Yes, the almighty God came down and gave himself to be sacrificed for the whole humanity. Today we can get forgiveness of sins and remission of our sins by His precious blood on the cross. The Bible says in Isaiah 1:18, ‘Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, "Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.”

We had almost 15” snow this week. What a beautiful thing it is, nothing can beat the whiteness of snow. The white and bright shiny Crystals of snow reflect light even in darkness and gives the appearance of full moon light. Yes, God wants to wash us and make us pure white as snow so that we may shine in darkness and give light to others who are in darkness.

2. Jesus came to save us from all evil:

Jesus came to this world to save us from the evil plan of devil. Devil does not do any good for us. He cheated Adam and Eve and took all the blessings of God from them and left them in misery and pain. He rejoices to see us in pain, misery, sin and eternal death, but Jesus could not see us in this painful situation. And Jesus came down to rescue us from all these things and give us abundant life. He came down to wipe away all our tears, no matter what the problem is. There is nothing impossible with Jesus. He is the God who really cares for us. You may be at the end of your road and may be thinking, “ there is no hope for me.” But look to Jesus, the same God who did mighty miracles in the lives of people and He can do the same for you. Yes my friend, He will wipe away all your tears. Just tell Him, what is bothering you and He will certainly solve your problem.

3. Jesus came to save us from Hell Fire:

Jesus said in John 3:16-17, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”

God wants to save us from perishing or from eternal death. That’s why the Bible says in Ezekiel 18:32, "For I have no pleasure in the death of one who dies," says the Lord GOD. "Therefore turn and live!" Many a times people think that as God is very loving He will finally admit everyone in heaven but this is not true. It is true that God loves but at the same time He is a just God and He can not tolerate any kind of sin. Further it is not God who sends us to hell fire, but He has given to us the choice to choose life or death. It is our choice to choose God or devil, it is our choice to choose hell or heaven.

Jesus did every thing possible which were needed for our salvation and for going to heaven. Now it is our turn to accept His great sacrifice and to live and finally reach heaven. That’s why Jesus said in John 14:1-3, "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

If you are not yet sure where you are destined to go after death, then confess all your sins to Jesus and accept Him as your Lord and Savior. He will wash you from all your sins and give you life – eternal life. If you want to accept Him as your Lord and Savior, please pray this prayer with me:

Lord Jesus I come before you according to your promise that, whoever believes in you shall not perish but will have everlasting life. I believe with all my heart that you died for my sins and shed your precious blood for the remission of my sins. You came down to save me from hell fire, please forgive and forget all my sins. Please wash me with your precious blood and please come into my life and give me eternal life so that when I finish the race of earthly life, I may enter into heaven and live with you always. Thank you Jesus for hearing my prayer and for giving me a new life. I pray all this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

The Saviour and the Redeemer

By Rev. Vinod Victor

Luke 2: 8-20.
"Hark the herald angels sing..." and "While shepherds watched their flocks by night." are two very common and traditional carols that ring in Christmas time. Luke places the heavenly announcement in the night time where shepherds were keeping watch over their flock. The so-called religious people would not have considered the shepherds worthy enough for a divine encounter. Kept busy by the cares of the flock seldom did they have time to ensure that the ceremonial law
was meticulously kept. It could be symbolic that the message of the birth of the Chief Shepherd- the Good Shepherd- who would lay down his life for the sheep comes to the ordinary shepherd not the wise and the prudent or the religious scribes and the Pharisees.

Luke makes it clear that the messenger is from the Lord (kurios). This was a title exclusively considered to be the right of the ruler of the land and thus is a political and meaningful statement of the paradigm shifts in power equations and relationship dynamics that was on the horizon. The titles attributed to the baby should also be closely looked at. Saviour (soter) born for you. It is interesting to note that this word is used only here in the infancy narratives. Mathew and Mark never uses this word and John uses it once in 4:22. From the root so which could mean save, rescue, deliver, keep safe, preserve, cure, make well etc. this was a clear declaration as to who the born one is, He would save the people from sin, heal them from iniquity and disease, keep them from falling and preserve them in the journey in eternity. He is the Saviour and the Redeemer born for the ordinary people in the town of David. The Messianic expectation surely had Bethlehem (house of bread) as the focal point and the stem of David as the central imagery. He is Christ the Lord (christos kurios). Even at the birth narrative Luke asserts to the ordinary shepherd that the Messiah is born. The sign with which the Messiah would be identified is that he is a helpless babe not a mighty one, wrapped in swaddling clothes not kingly attire and is laid in a manger not a palace. It is in a helpless, hapless, homeless child that you can see the Saviour born.

The first carol attributes all glory to God. It is God's infinite love and grace that has offered the Saviour unto the word. The Redeemer would be a propitiation for their sins and deliver them from eternal death. They would be restored to God's people as God's own children and would have the hope of unending glory in Christ. At the birth of the Saviour there is peace on earth. The genuine encounter with this Saviour would result in peace within human beings, with their own consciences, peace in families, in relationships, between people, ethnic groups, communities, nations. Peace between humanity and co creation. Peace for people groups continuously living in fear and exclusion. Peace between God and the human. This peace is not a transcendental beyond experience. It is a peace on earth- here and now. There is also good will on God's part towards humanity. A favour summed up in Christ who by taking their nature upon him redeems them from the penalty, power and then the presence of sin. In Christ the saved would be incorporated thus accepted in the beloved son in whom the father is well pleased. The angels returned into the heavens having made the glorious revelation that the Saviour and the Redeemer is now available. The response of the shepherds is worth taking note of.

The Saviour Could be So Near Yet Very Far. Once the shepherds are told about the Saviour they say to each other, Come let us go across to Bethlehem and see the things happened. So they hurried on and they discovered Mary and Joseph and the babe. They then went around proclaiming what they saw. Those who heard were amazed.

When the message came so clear to them they did not hold back. The one who is come can still be distant and far if the one to whom He is come refuses to go and meet. The shepherds say to one another, Come now, let us Go. dierchomai is an active verb. The shepherds did not keep the decision procrastinated. It is not, we should one day go and meet him but it is let us go NOW. The verb could also mean cross over. Attitudes could at times be indifferent. Message about the Saviour and Redeemer though heralded loud and clear could often fall on deaf ears, hard hearts and seemingly impossible persons. It is here that the urgency in Let us Go Now to Bethlehem becomes crucial and significant.

The Saviour could be revealed yet hidden. Somebody else's experience seldom become authentic testimonies. However big the claims of a messenger are the claim only remain a pointer to one's own realisation of the truth. The shepherds could have very said thought, Yes the messengers are right and could have just forgotten about it. But instead they realised that it was the Lord who hath made known to them these deep mysteries. Their response is "Let us go and SEE". oida would also mean know, understand, perceive, learn, experience, recognise, acknowledge, respect etc. It is this desire that enables them to discover the babe in the manger. Discover (aneuran) means to find by constant searching. The messenger announced that the Saviour is born. Appropriating the message would require a searching, a finding, a seeing- an encounter, an experience.

The Saviour once experienced cannot but be proclaimed: When they had seen him they told everyone about the word which has been spoken to them about the child. Luke uses the verb diagnoriso, which means to make known abroad. This is the only instance in the entire scripture that this form of the verb gnoriso (make known, declare, certify) is used. They return glorifying and praising God. All who heard were amazed at what they proclaimed because first hand testimony often sounds authentic, genuine and real.

The good news of great joy that the Saviour and Redeemer is born came to ordinary people who were greatly afraid at the revelation of the glory. What started as a comfort "Do not be afraid" ends up transforming the entire community. It is a corporate decision to go across to Bethlehem and see. It is a corporate hurrying on, a corporate discovery, a corporate proclamation and a corporate return glorifying and praising God. The Saviour is born indeed. It has been the experience of the shepherds, of untold millions in twenty centuries past. How about you?

The power of Praise and Worship songs

By Varghese Chacko

In my last article, I talked about thanksgiving and praise. Let us see a different way of expressing thanksgiving and praise. Everybody likes music in one way or another. Some like fast songs. Some slow songs. And there are variety of songs. Songs can motivate us. Songs can make our feet dance. And there are songs which can bring the presence of God in our lives. Here, where Praise and Worship songs come as helpful and powerful. And Praise and Worship songs are expressive. They can be distinguished from other Christian songs in many ways. Let us see few.

1. The power of Praise and Worship comes from the heart and not from the mouth or actions:

The lyrics of the songs are very important. Select few songs, the lyrics of which expresses your praises to God. Give less importance to the music. Practice and try to sing those songs in your home.

2. Praise and Worship songs generate a reciprocal power to heal and deliver our lives:

Praise and Worship songs are originated from the God's word itself. If you sing God's word it will become live in your lives. God will heal your diseases. God will deliver us from the evil of this world.

3. Praise and Worship are sacrificial:
People who wrote praise and Worship songs wrote them out of their experiences. Many of the writers have sacrificed their lives to God before they wrote these songs. So when you sing their songs, you are singing their sacrifices. They are sacrificial.

4. Psalm 22:3says God love to enthrone in the praises of his people.

God will not be impressed in gossip or bad talk, but in the praises to him. When we sing these songs, we are practicing to be away from a bad tongue. We are practicing to talk right.

5. Praise and Worship brings unity:

When people gather in churches or other places to sing worship songs,it will bring unity without our knowledge. We can talk to believers and know what God has done in their lives.

6. praise and Worship is like a earth to heaven rain:

You are connected to God than to the people. Praise and Worship is not entertainment. Rather it is to please God. Rather it is to come to the presence of God.

By understanding the power of Praise and Worship songs, try singing such songs in your quite time with the Lord. Encourage your friends or children to sing praise songs in churches or family prayers. Let our Lord Jesus bless you more with the praise and worship songs.

Through the Valley of Death & other Books

As many of you know that in the year 2005, our dad was very sick even unto death. God miraculously healed him. We have compiled it in a book form. I sure believe that it will inspire you and encourage you greatly.

This book is available for purchase at JasmineCorp Store

Also read these two books by Sherly Isaac "Allah and Elohim - Are they the same God" Available at JasmineCorp Store, and "Is Jesus God?" Available at JasmineCorp Store,

Both books compares the Bible and the Quran and read eye opening facts about Jesus, God of the Bible, Allah and Islamic faith. I am sure that you want to read this.

Download Articles in Handheld Computers

You can now download articles in Palm Doc format for your palm handheld computer. It will work with any devise that has Palm OS and Palm Doc Reader installed. To download click on the link named "Palm Doc Format" i.e. at the top of this page by the side of each articles.

Kids Page - Free Tutorials

Now you can learn Graphics and web designing online at Kid's page. These tutorials are free for kids who subscribe for CSI Kids Newsletter. Currently tutorials for Paint Shop Pro, HTML and Dreamweaver are available.

So please enroll your kids by going to http://kids.csinewsletter.org/member/join.asp

And visit CSI Kid's page at http://kids.csinewsletter.org

Hindi / Malayalam/Tamil Bible Online

Now you can read Bible in Hindi online at http://www.hindibible.org
in Malayalam online at http://www.malayalambible.org
in Tamil online at http://www.hindibible.org?ver=tamil

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Your Feedback

Your feedback and comments are Welcome. Please send your Parish news & articles to Editor (Sherly N. Isaac) at this address News@csinewsletter.comThe messages submitted will be checked whether they are correct according to the word of God. Editor reserves the right to accept, reject or edit the messages. The writers are responsible for the contents of their writings.



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