Matthew 14:25

by Rev Joel Yong

Matthew 14:25 tells us that “And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea.”

This miraculous act was meant to teach a valuable lesson to the disciples. Firstly it showed that Jesus had tremendous and awesome power over the elements. Secondly it showed he had power over the waves that threatened to capsize their boat. Jesus can subdue your every concern and fear and place it underneath His feet. Would you let Him? Come to Him today.

How God respond

by Rev Jason Phua

Bible Readings: Job 37:1-39:30; Proverbs 22:13

READ (Verses chosen for reflection)
Verse chosen for reflection: Job 38:4 “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?”

REFLECT
For all that was suffered by Job and spoken by his friends, the Almighty appeared and gave a seemingly unsatisfactory response to Job through chapters 38:4-39:30. What did God’s speech about His power and creativity seeks to accomplish?

At this point of the book, we might expect God to tell Job about the very beginning when He had that wager with Satan; or at the very least, shouldn’t God comfort Job and restore him immediately? Some of us might even have the idea that God should apologise to Job for allowing him to suffer as a “blameless and upright” (cf: Job 1) man.

Yet, the Creator did not answer Job his many questions; at least not directly. The response that God had for Job painted a beautiful picture of His mighty creation for which Job was invited to be a part of. From the impending doom of Job’s sufferings, he was suddenly spoken to by the One who gives life. From the darkest possible situation of deaths and failures; God once again brought Job into His universe of life and creation. Yet, before Job was to be restored; he and his friends must first learn the truth about their place before the Creator.

RELATE
There are times when I sought responses from the Lord; thinking that He will answer me in a certain manner. During those times, I forgot that He is the Almighty and so has the right to respond in whatever way He wants. I forgot that He knows what I am thinking even before I know what I am thinking. I forgot that His will is perfect while mine is often a composite of limited knowledge and selfish desires. In my forgetfulness of where I stand in His vast universe, I will miss and even misunderstand His response to my prayers. In my pride, I will even imagine responses that did not come from God. Only when I surrender “all”, would I hear clearly the heartbeat of God and what He is really saying to me.

REST
Lord Almighty, you are sovereign upon all that you have created. Have mercy on me and teach me Your ways. Help me to know Your will and follow. Amen.

Mark 8:29 | Matthew 9:28 | John 21:16

by Rev Joel Yong

Every now and then, Jesus would ask questions in the Bible passages. These questions are pertinent to everyone who encounters Christ, even today!

The questions are: “Who do you say that I am?” (Mk 8:29), “Do you believe that I am able to this?” (Mt 9:28) and “Do you love me?” (Jn 21:16). Our responses to these questions determine how we will live our lives. It is necessary that we re-visit our answers to these questions on a regular basis throughout our lives, so that we might renew our commitment unto the Savior regularly.

Beholding the glory of God

by Rev Jason Phua

Bible Readings: 2 Corinthians 3:1-18; Psalm 43:1-5

READ (Verses chosen for reflection)
Verse chosen for reflection: 2 Corinthians 3:18 “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit”

REFLECT
How privilege we are to be able to behold the glory of God with unveiled faces! During the time of Moses, such an act would be inconceivable. As said in 2 Corinthians verse 13 as well as Exodus 34, Moses had to veil his face because it was “frightening” to the people. The people were frightened because it seemed unnatural and hence something they could not understand.  Even then, not everyone was able to have the privilege of meeting with God in a direct conversation.

However, due to the work of Christ on the cross, all of us who believe understood that we can now have access to the Father. We can now enjoy an intimate relationship with the Creator Himself. Unlike Moses, whose glory from his meeting with God faded through time, the glory given to us in Christ will not fade. For those who continue to behold God in His glory shall be transformed into the image from one degree of glory to another.

RELATE
How have I been appreciating such a privilege of being able to behold God’s glory with unveiled faces? I must confess that there are times when I had taken such a privilege for granted. Instead of cherishing the moments where I can speak with my Father in heaven over issues that trouble me, I chose to use my own strength to meet such issues. Instead of enjoying the time I can have with my Lord during devotional, I have allowed my mind to be distracted by work and cares of the world.

REST
May the Lord help me to be in remembrance of how I can behold His glory with unveiled faces. This is so I can continue to grow in the image of the living God. Amen.

Matthew 25:44

by Rev Joel Yong

Matthew 25:44 (AMP) records the people as asking the Lord: “Then they also will answer, Lord when did we see You hungry or thirsty or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?”

The people were not aware that by ignoring the poor, sick, hungry, and imprisoned – that they were sinning against the Lord. God cares for us all – even those forgotten or thought little of, by society. Reach out to those in need today, for in doing so – you are doing it for the Lord!

Risen

by Rev Jason Phua

Bible Readings: Job 12:1-15:35; Proverbs 21:30-31

READ (Verses chosen for reflection)
Job 14:11-12 “As waters fail from a lake and a river wastes away and dries up, so a man lies down and rises not again; till the heavens are no more he will not awake or be roused out of his sleep.”

REFLECT
In Job 14, Job addressed himself to God. He desired to make his case in the audience of God and awaited the renewal of his soul. He was so confident that God would speak with him that he said that even if he should die; God will “appoint a set time, and remember me!” (Ref: Job 14:13) Yet for Job, death knew no resurrection. For the wise man, death will definitely send a person to Sheol. In his words, Job concluded that “man lies down and rises not again”.

RELATE
In his time, Job would never have imagined that the Son of God would die and rise again. This Easter season, as churches around the world celebrate the victory of the Risen Christ; believers remember that we died and is raised with our Lord and Saviour. So those who hope in the Lord can now rise with Him on eagle’s wings. Those who cling on to the Lord can now rest and grow in Him. Indeed, the resurrection power cannot only be taught, remembered nor encountered on Resurrection Sunday; but it should be the anchor of our daily living as those who have risen with Jesus Christ our Lord. As Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15:14, if Christ has not risen, our faith would be in vain.

REST
No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine!
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness Divine,
Bold I approach the eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Bold I approach the eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.*

Amen!

*Lyrics from “And Can It Be That I Should Gain” by Charles Wesley.

Zephaniah 2:3

by Rev Joel Yong

Zephaniah 2:3 records: “Seek the LORD, all who are humble and follow his commands. Seek to do what is right and to live humbly. Perhaps even yet the LORD will protect you–protect you from his anger on that day of destruction.”

The prophet calls on those who are humble to follow God. Pride on the other hand, causes a person to not follow God because the arrogant think they know best and are unteachable. Let’s turn from our pride and turn instead to God this day, for He will change our lives.