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Pastoral 2012

This Week’s Church Camp

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Dear brethren,

This year’s church camp begins tomorrow. We thank God for 164 campers who will be joining the camp held in Hotel Equitorial, Bangi, Malaysia. Most will be travelling by the four coaches booked by the camp committee, and others in their cars.

Among the participants are brethren from our sister churches. Let us welcome them heartily and extend our hands of fellowship with joy.

Let us pray for our camp speaker, Rev Dr Jeffrey Khoo (Pastor of True Life BPC & Principal of FEBC), and the children’s speakers, Ho Xiao Wei, Tammy Ho and Choong Yi Jie. Remember also to pray for our own preachers who will be expounding the Word during the devotions, the Chinese Service meetings and night meetings.

We thank the Lord for His grace that has helped us hitherto in all the arrangements. Let us continue in prayer for all those who are in charge of various programmes and the logistics of this camp. Let us also cheerfully co-operate with them and readily follow all the instructions given to us that we may have a safe, peaceful and well-coordinated camp.

The purpose of our church camp is threefold: (i) to learn from God’s Word how we should conduct ourselves as His church in these last days; (ii) to foster Christian fellowship among our brethren and (iii) to seek His gracious guidance and blessings upon our church and every participant through times of prayer. Let us always bear in mind this threefold purpose.

Be punctual for all meetings. Be kind and helpful to one another. Be patient and forgiving. Speak with grace. Serve one another with love and humility. May we bear a good witness of our faith among ourselves and before others who occupy the hotel. Remember to be courteous to the hotel staff.

If you need any assistance, please do not hesitate to approach the Camp Master, Dn Francis Lee, the camp committee members or the Session members. For information on the children’s programme, please approach Pr Kelvin Lim.

We have been praying for many months that God would bless our souls through the preaching of God’s Word. So let us come for every session of this camp with great anticipation to hear the preaching of the Word and be renewed in our hearts. God will bless us as we wait upon Him for His blessings. “He will bless them that fear the LORD, both small and great” (Psalm 115:13).

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Prabhudas Koshy

 

 

Fearful Days: An End-Time Experience

 

Jesus repeatedly tells us that terror and fear will increasingly grip the hearts of the people in the days that lead to the end of the world. “But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by. Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven” (Luke 21:9-11). He also said, “Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken” (Luke 21:26).

A former US President, F.D. Roosevelt, in an address to Congress in 1941, said that one of our essential human freedoms is the freedom from fear. Since then, much is said and done to get fear out of human minds. Though this is a good and just cause, it is an utter impossibility. The events of our times only aggravate the sense of fear in human hearts. Whether it be terrorism, wars, pestilences or natural calamities, people everywhere live in fear. Just as Jesus said, “Men’s hearts are failing them for fear.”

The root cause of troubles and fears is sin and rebellion against God. As long as sin increases, there is no hope for calm and tranquillity. The Lord God Almighty says, “The wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt. There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked” (Isaiah 57:20-21).

No man can fully free himself from fear until he is “born again” through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the Prince of Peace, and He alone will be responsible for peace on earth. Man is absolutely unable to rid the world of fear, as evidenced by the long history of wars and rumours of wars that have permeated the globe to this day. According to the unfailing Biblical prophecy, this world is not heading towards a man-made utopia but towards the Great Tribulation, the time of greatest suffering the earth has ever known (Revelation 6:15-17).

Of all the hundreds of things that men fear, perhaps the greatest is the “fear of death” (Hebrews 2:15). Anyone who has never been saved by the grace of God and washed in the blood of Christ has every reason to fear death, to die in his sins. “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31; cf. 9:27). Death is not the end for man. God’s Word says that after death, each of us will forever be either in the torment and punishment of hell, or in the joyful bliss of heaven (Luke 12:4-5; John 14:1-3). At the moment of physical death, one’s eternal destiny is forever sealed. The greatest fear anyone could ever have is an eternity in hell.

Jesus died on Calvary’s cross for our sins, bearing all the judgment that we deserve. Now, He offers salvation to everyone who will confess his sins to God, and trust Christ as his Saviour, believing that He died for him. You cannot be free from fear until all your sins are forgiven. Believe on Christ “in whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins” (Ephesians 1:7).

Once we are cleansed of our sins and are delivered from eternal damnation, we can be sure that the Lord will be with us, even in death. Jesus also assures us, “Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death” (Revelation 1:17-18). If, at anytime you feel afraid, as the terrors of the end time increase, pray to the Lord for His peace. He promises, “My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).

 

Pastoral Exhortation