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Scripture Memory: Eternal Promise.

VERSE : Psalm 111:9 “He sent redemption unto his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever: holy and reverend is his name.

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O Worship the LORD in the Beauty of Holiness

21 December 2014
9.30am Combined English Christmas Service
Rev Charles Seet (Joy to the World! Ps 98)
6:00 pm Evening Service
Rev Colin Wong (Hope in God, Rom 15:8-13)

28 December 2014
8 am & 11am Worship Service
Eld Chin Hoong Chor (Faithful Until the End, 2 Thes 3:3-5)
6:00 pm Evening Service
Rev Mathews Abraham (Consider Your Ways before the Lord, Haggai 1:1-12)

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WORTHY OF WORSHIP

Absolute celebration of Christmas! I came across this banner placed strategically, not in a church but in a retail shop in one of the heartlands of Singapore, offering a 50% discount sale of all its goods. Christmas is giving way to crass consumerism and self-indulgence. People associate Christmas with frenzied shopping, frivolous gaiety and wild revelry. Many celebrate the birth of Jesus but refuse to accept Him as their Lord of lords. They sing carols but pay lip service to His deity and authority. They are just happy that He remains a baby in a manger but reject Him as God and Saviour of this world.

Christmas is Worship

As Christians we should not celebrate Christmas the way the world celebrates it. We should celebrate it by worshipping Him. That is what God wants of every child of His: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:10-11). The worship of God for the incarnation of His only begotten Son should be the essence of our celebration of Christmas.

When we ascribe our worship to Jesus, we are rejecting what the world commonly thinks of Jesus. Some say He was an outstanding teacher of His time. But good teachers do not claim to be God. Some say He was an insane man. But insane men do not preach, teach and perform miracles as He did. Some say He was only a phantom. But phantoms cannot possess flesh and blood to be hung on the cross with long rusty nails and thirst for water and be pierced at the side with a spear. Some say He was a religious phony. But phonies do not rise from the dead. Some say He was just a myth concocted by men. But myths do not make an impact on world history as His birth became the focal point of history. The calendar years are numbered according to His birth. The abbreviation B.C. means Before Christ, and A.D. stands for, Anno Domini, which means, in the year of the Lord.

As believers in Christ, we must acknowledge who Jesus Christ is and ascribe worship to Him because He is our Lord and our God.

Christmas is Knowing Who Jesus Is

His Deity

It is a great mystery that a glorious God who is infinitely rich would become poor, and assume a human nature. And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh… (1 Tim 3:16). Jesus gave up His throne and glory – His shekinah glory – to be born of the virgin Mary. But He did not give up being God. So He was all God and all man. Many have made Jesus lesser than God. They conclude, according to their own whims and fancies, that He is one of the many gods, a created being, a good teacher and a prophet. There are those believe that Christ is just a consciousness, a form of the higher self. This Christ is possessed in all because everyone is divine.

Howerver, the Word of God reveals to us that Jesus is indeed God: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made (John 1:1-3). The Word here refers to Jesus Christ Himself. This is explained in verse 14 of the same chapter: And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

When those who opposed Jesus questioned His authority, He declared without apology: Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am (John 8:58). This incurred the wrath of His accusers because the declaration of “I am” refers to His eternity and deity (Exodus 3:14). Jesus’ opponents who understood what he meant were so incensed with him that they took up stones to cast at Him.

His Atonement

So Jesus is God. But why did He condescend to become a man and be born in such a lowly manner, and be subjected to man’s ridicule, reproach, rejection and finally sentenced to a cruel death on the cross? He did it to bring reconciliation between God and man (Colossians 1:19,20). All have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). God hates sin with a holy hatred and must respond to it with His wrath. He is angry with the wicked everyday (Psalm 7:11). Hence, man shall surely die: for the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23).

A holy God is justly angry with the sin of mankind. Yet the depth and expanse of God’s love for us is such that He gave His only begotten Son to live a righteous life for us. God spared Him not but delivered Him up for us all(Romans 8:32). Only Jesus could reconcile us back to God. This reconciliation is accomplished through the cross (Colossians 1:20). Jesus offered Himself to be a Lamb without spot and blemish to take the sin of the whole world (John 1:29). He bore the punishment we deserved for our sins, suffered the full weight of God’s wrath and delivered us from eternal condemnation in the fury of hell. The Son of God became a Man to be a perfect substitute for us, willing to lay down His life.

On the third day He rose again from the dead, that whosoever believes in Him shall have everlasting life (John 3:16).

Celebration Out of a Heart of Worship

Knowing who Jesus is would humble us to bend our knees to worship Him. Our immediate response to Christmas is worship. If we decorate our houses, spend time with our families, fellowship with friends, sing carols and exchange gifts but have no worship, our response to the reality of our Saviour’s birth would be grossly inadequate.

When the Bible speaks of worship, it demands the sacrifice required from us. Romans 12:1-2 requires all believers to present ourselves a living sacrifice, to be intensely consecrated to the Lord: I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

Secondly, it requires our giving: In Philippians 4:18, Paul described the church’s giving to him as an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God.

Thirdly, it involves our service to others: But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased (Hebrews 13:16).

Fourthly, it constrains us to evangelise others with the gospel of salvation and be a living testimony for the Lord: that I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost (Romans 15:16).

For this Christmas, let us worship. We should worship like the shepherds did all that Christmas night. They dropped everything they were doing to go in haste to find the Saviour in the manger. There was a sense of urgency and godly determination in their attitude of wanting to worship Jesus (Luke 2:15,16). They could not contain their joy of having found the Messiah and seized the opportunity to herald the good news to those they met along the way (v.17). Christmas is a great opportunity to tell others about Jesus and bring them to church to hear the gospel.

We should take time to withdraw ourselves to meditate on Christ’s great love for us during this Christmas and to give Him our gratitude and praise.

Conclusion

The absolute celebration of Christmas can only be done if we respond to His incarnation and redemption for us with worship and giving ourselves to Him. Let us not be overly familiar with Christmas that we miss Christmas. Jesus is certainly worthy of our worship this Christmas! —Rev Quek KK

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Watchnight Service 
(with Holy Communion)

31 Dec 14 (Wed), 10.30 pm - 12.00 am

“There Is Always a New Beginning”

(Jer 17:8) by Rev Colin Wong

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61st YF / 33rd YAF Anniversary 2014

Theme:           Remembering God in Good Times

Speaker: Elder Lee Heok Seng

Date:               31st Dec 2014Wednesday (before Watchnight Service)

Time:              7 - 8.30 pm

Venue:           Beulah Centre MPH

Food & Fellowship thereafter.

Contact: Lysa (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

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1) The offering collected at the Christmas Carol Service on Wednesday will be designated to help the poor, needy and underprivileged through Christian ministries in Singapore and overseas.

2) Catechism Class for Easter Baptism on 5 April 2015 commences on 4 Jan 15 at Beulah Centre Rm 2-1, 9.30am. Please pre-register by emailing Yin Chan or filling up the form available at the front counter. Closing date: next Sunday.

3) Australian Orientation Mtg, 17 Jan 15 (Sat), 1-2.30 pm. Maranatha B-P Church, 63 Cranwell Road. Encouragement by: Rev Jack Sin. Others: Info session, fellowship with students back here on school break. Parents of students are also welcome.

4) The Life B-P Church Camp 2015 will be held from 15 to 18 June 2015 at Bintan’s Nirwana Resort Hotel in Indonesia.  Speaker: Dr Carl T Martin. Topic: “Changed into His Image.”  Please book your annual leave early to avoid disappointment.   Online registration begins in Jan 2015.

5) Filipina Service (11am) will use Rm 1-6 (Beulah House) from 28th Dec onwards.

6) ERBL Lectures (Jan-May 2015) commencing 12 Jan 15. Please complete registration forms and place them in the box, together with payment.

7) Available at the front counter are: Daily Devotional (The Believer’s Daily Remembrancer), Scripture Memory Verse booklets and Life B-P Church Calendar.

8) Our condolences to brother Wu Yong Lin and family on the homegoing of his mother on 14 Dec 14.

Preaching appointment: Rev Seet at Thai Service, 2.30pm. Rev Wong at Life Chinese Service, 9.30 am and Life Evening Service, 6.00 pm.

Vision & Mission

 

To build a united church family that is committed to making disciples through Salvation, Sanctification and Service, to the glory of God.

Verse for the Week

October 15 & 22 - The Cost of Discipleship

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. Matthew 16:25