December 17, 2023

Testimonies of New Members

Written by:
Rev (Dr) Prabhudas Koshy

Jeff Joish
Growing up in a Christian home with Christian parents and relatives, I have regularly attended church since I was young. I also had the privilege of attending Junior Worship and Gethsemane Children’s Ministry. Through these services, I learnt that I must believe in God and was taught many Bible truths. I also learnt that Jesus is the Son of God, who came to earth to save us from our sins. I believe that Jesus is my Saviour who died on the cross and rose again on the third day, defeating death and giving us everlasting life.

During the start of my first year in secondary school, I had difficulty making friends. I saw that my new classmates constantly did ungodly things that contradict the Scriptures. However, I sought God’s advice by praying, and I eventually discovered other Christians in my school. Through regularly attending worship services, singing hymns, praying every day and listening to God’s Word being preached by Pastor, I realised that God was testing me if I would give in to temptation and follow ungodly ways. However, God guided me and led me not to succumb to temptation, but to follow godly ways.

I thank God that He opened a way for me to attend the Catechism class. I thank Him for my loving and godly parents who brought me to church regularly and taught me about the Gospel. I pray that I can always bear a good testimony for Christ. I pray that God will continue leading me to worship and serve Him to the end.

Joel Tan
The Bible teaches us to worship in a church and to be a regular part of its membership and activities, so that we may progress in our Christian journey: “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25). Likewise, the Bible also teaches us – through the examples of various characters, such as Nathan the prophet, John the Baptist and our Lord Himself – to seek strong and sound preaching, and apply their lessons, as a remedy against sin and falling by the wayside in our walk with God.

I was born in a Christian home; my parents knew the Lord and regularly worshipped in Bethesda Frankel Estate Church. Like many other Christian parents, they brought me to church. I attended Sunday School and the Junior Youth Service. Having had special-needs issues since I was young, it was difficult to focus and sit by myself. One of my parents had to sit with me. As we grew up, the schedules of me and my elder sister changed frequently, and my parents had to find a church that could accommodate our rapidly-changing schedules. Hence, for a time, we attended the Saturday service of Trinity Christian Centre. However, due to my hearing problems, I could not tolerate the loud music and their way of worship.

I was blessed with knowledge of Gethsemane BPC’s doctrines and practices even before I stepped foot in Gethsemane. While my parents were looking for a solution to my problems, Sis Cecile let me listen to Bible Witness Web Radio and read Bible Witness Magazine. When Sis Cecile brought my sister to her tuition classes in Raffles Place, she also brought me to the former Bible Witness Bookroom in Chinatown while waiting for her class to finish. We would read some of the books there and browse through others. Eventually, she asked my parents if she could bring me to the “Scripture in Song” musical in 2013, and they agreed.

Since coming to Gethsemane, I have greatly benefited from the spiritual nourishment through the strong preaching of God’s Word. It is truly the case that I have learnt the “great and mighty things” of God (Jeremiah 33:3), through the sermons and exhortations that I had not known before coming to Gethsemane. While the preaching and exposition of God’s Word in Gethsemane can prick souls, I am grateful for the constant reminders to live by God’s Word and not fall into the trap of sin. In the modern world, it is very easy to lose sight of the ultimate prize that awaits every believer at the end of time, and do things the way we want and not what God would have wanted.

I also thank God for the many blessings I have received during my time in Youth Fellowship. While the preaching is just as strong, it is also quite relatable to me as the preachers seek to show how God’s Word can be applied to address issues faced by youths and young people of today, such as problems that come from academic studies and by ongoing trends in the modern world.

I praise God for the fellowship that I have experienced in both the Main Service, as well as the Youth Fellowship. Despite my condition, the congregants have come to accept me as I am, and not pass judgment or make fun of me. I am blessed by the concern and mutual encouragement shown to me by congregants and committee members alike, both in conversation with them as well as in presenting our prayers and requests to God.

In conclusion, I have truly benefited much from my learning in Gethsemane. May God continue to guide me and help me to walk close to Him even amid the trials I face now, and those that have yet to come. All glory and honour be to the Lord. Amen.

Nehemiah dela Cruz
Born into a Christian family, God had always been the centre of our house. I was granted the privilege of being born into a missionary family that served in the mission stations in Bogo and San Antonio. This allowed me to grow up witnessing the power of God’s saving grace first-hand, and seeing how God was the omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent God. However, I was still young and immature in the faith, and never really took the messages and devotions I heard seriously until much later.

When I was three years old, my father passed away, and the incident instilled great grief within my family. I was too young to understand the situation then, but when I grew older, I gradually understood it. This caused my mum and I to move back to Singapore. When we came back to Singapore, we started attending Gethsemane BPC. My mind was soon filled with doubts and questions. Why did this have to happen to me? What did I do wrong?

The question in my head soon caused me to, unfortunately, doubt God’s goodness and grace. I started to lose trust in God and His will for me. However, the messages preached in the church and in the children’s ministry reminded me that God is always in control, and that all are according to His marvellous will and plan. As I grew in age and went to public schools, I began to feel the world’s influence on me. However, I am glad for the strict reminders from my family and the preachers of the church that managed to keep me on the straight and narrow path through all the various temptations.

Although I cannot remember the exact date of my salvation, I am glad that I have been called from darkness into God’s marvellous light. I am thankful for the bountiful grace God has shown to me by sustaining me and my family. I am also glad that I can now confidently declare that I am a sinner saved by grace. My prayer is that I will continue to grow in the Lord, and serve my Saviour fruitfully in the years to come.

Ryan Skariah
By the grace of God, I was born into a Christian family. I thank God for godly parents who taught me God’s Word daily. From a very young age, I started to attend Gethsemane Children’s Ministry and Gethsemane Children’s Choir. I thank God for helping me to learn about Him and to understand that Jesus died for us to save us from our sins.

I thank God for my Junior Worship teachers and my GCM teachers, who taught me God’s Word faithfully. After listening to the Sunday sermons preached by Pastor and the regular GYF messages preached by Pr Cornelius and Pastor Koshy, I was convicted that I was a sinner and that all have come short of the glory of God. I realised that I had not been walking close with God, and that I did not pray to him with a true spirit. I have been attending church worship services and fellowship meetings regularly, but still did not obey God’s Word, and I was constantly sinning. I thank the Lord for Pastor Koshy’s messages that rebuked me, which made me ask the Lord for forgiveness for all my sins. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8). I prayed to the Lord for grace and strength to be able to walk closer with Him. I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Saviour and decided to go through the Catechism class.

Through the Catechism class, I was able to further understand the doctrines of the church, the Bible and God. I thank God for Elder Choy and Elder Francis, who taught us on these important topics. I pray that the Lord will help me grow spiritually and love Him even more. I pray for strength to serve Him and worship Him wholeheartedly. All glory be to God!

Titus Lim Rui Heng
I was raised in a Christian family from the day I was born. My parents brought my sister and I to church from a very young age. Throughout my childhood, I had the privilege of hearing numerous sermons and attending Vacation Bible School camps where I learned about the concept of salvation, such as the ABC acronym - Accept, Believe, Confess. I also learned many Bible verses, e.g. Romans 6:23 - “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord”; and 1 John 1:9 - “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
In 2019, during one of the youth camps, a question was posed during one of the invitations - “Raise up your hand if you know that you will be in heaven if you were to die right now.” This question left me deeply conflicted about the certainty of my salvation, and I approached my pastor for guidance after the service. He shared with me that if I was saved, the Holy Spirit would be the One who confirms and grants me inner peace about my salvation. We prayed together, but I left that evening still wrestling with doubt. It was during my devotion that night that I realised I was still a sinner in need of salvation. The many years of following my parents to church and the many sermons preached to me did not mean I was saved. That night, I confessed my sins and accepted Christ as my personal Saviour.

From 2019 to 2022, my family continued to attend church regularly, but it eventually became a routine for me—going to church on Sunday mornings and then heading home. Youth meetings were scarce, and my spiritual growth stagnated.

In mid-2022, my mum talked to me about our spiritual growth in the church, and asked if we wanted to visit another church where we could grow and serve God effectively. By God’s grace and providence, my family came to Gethsemane BPC through Aunty Annie’s invitation. Listening to the sermons and attending the many weekly activities, such as the YF, rejuvenated me and aided me in my spiritual walk with the Lord. I also thank the Lord for allowing me to attend this year’s Church Camp, where I learned about cultivating spiritual mindedness and living for Christ in these last days.

Earlier this year, my family and I attended the Catechism classes, where we delved into various topics, from God’s creation to Christ’s second coming. Coming from a Baptist background, I notice differences in practices between the Baptists and Presbyterians, such as infant baptism, baptism by sprinkling, and open communion. However, through the catechism class, I understood and accepted these differences, and have been assured that my salvation is only by faith in Christ. What is more important is the mutual love and respect we show to one another in the church, and not causing divisions so that we may all grow as one body in Christ. I pray for the Lord’s continual working in my life so that I may serve Him in spirit and in truth.

Phoebe Lim Jun Yu
I was born into a Christian family, and since our respective births, my brother and I have faithfully attended church at Ambassador Baptist Church with our parents. During the children’s Sunday School, I was curious and eager to learn more about God’s Word concerning creation, Ten Commandments, and Jesus’ parables. However, I did not understand much about salvation, and I had many questions pertaining to repentance from sins and being born again as a Christian.

In 2016, during the youth camp at Maranatha Baptist Church, I was deeply moved by the preaching on “Life’s Greatest Choice”, taken from Matthew 6:24 – “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” I realised that we were created by God and our allegiance should be to our Heavenly Father (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14). I raised my hand when the preacher asked if any unbeliever was interested in learning more about salvation. It was at this moment that a fellow sister-in-Christ approached me, prayed with me and shared the significance of salvation and the importance of repentance.

  • Romans 3:23 – “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”
  • Romans 10:9 – “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
  • John 14:6 – “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
  • John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

As I went home to ponder about it, I realised how sinful I was, and that my current way of life was filled with fleshly desires, which God hates, and would only lead to an eternal separation from God in the lake of fire. I cried out to God during that night, acknowledging that I was a sinner and asking Him to come into my heart to save me. I understand that doing good works doesn’t save and that I am a sinner in need of God’s love, forgiveness and mercy. Salvation is freely given to all those who genuinely believe and trust in Jesus. Only by faith through Him can I be free from the bondage of sins. As Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.”

From 2016 to 2022, my family had been attending church regularly, but over time it started feeling like a routine for me. Youth meetings were scarce, and I faced a period of spiritual stagnation, where I felt that I wasn’t growing much as a young Christian.

In mid-2022, my family and I were extended a warm invitation by Auntie Annie to Gethsemane Bible-Presbyterian Church, where we have been attending since then. Through my time in Gethsemane BPC, I felt that the church was of biblically sound doctrine, and was a God-fearing and God-honouring church. I was deeply encouraged by the warm fellowship, unity and encouragement of the brothers and sisters in Gethsemane BPC, and their yearning to learn and seek the Lord and serve Him in the different areas of service! I was immensely thankful that my brother and I were able to attend this year’s Church Camp, where we learned how we ought to be spiritually minded – to put off our fleshly desires and to put on the new man, which is to live by God’s desire and purpose for our lives. It reminded me of the importance of daily prayer and having a close walk and relationship with Him.

My prayer is that God will guide me, help me grow in my faith, and deepen my trust in Him as I continue to serve Him and be a beacon of light to the people around me in my words and actions. Matthew 5:16 says, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

Gethsemane Bible-Presbyterian Church adheres to the system of faith commonly known as the “Reformed Faith” as expressed in the Westminster Confession of Faith together with the Larger and Shorter Catechisms.
Our Worship Address
SingPost Centre
Level 5 Auditorium
10 Eunos Road 8, Singapore 408600
(next to Paya Lebar MRT station)
Our mailing address
Gethsemane Media Centre
33 Ubi Crescent
Singapore 408584
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