WHO DO I MARRY?

Marriage, as instituted by God, is a permanent union between a man and woman. As such, choosing a marriage partner should not only be done prayerfully but also in accordance to God’s stipulations. Marriage follows courtship; courtship begins with friendship; friendship begins with acquaintance between two mature persons of the opposite sex. That is the reverse progression. I do not wish to delve into the reasons for getting married here. Instead I will briefly discourse on choosing the right marriage partner.

“Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you”, says Jesus in Matthew 6:33. If you do not know what this means in practice, get in touch with me via the contacts below or go to a good pastor.

First off, you, the seeker must be born again and growing in Christ. Participate in Christian fellowships and activities. In other words, position yourself strategically. Then start relationships with fellow born again Christians. I presume that you have prayed and God has confirmed to you that you have the gift of marriage and not that of celibacy. Do not sin against God by getting married if you know God has, for the sake of ministry, granted you the grace to live a single life. You will not live optimally. You will definitely forfeit His blessings. (See 1 Cor 7)

Never court a non-believer. The Bible likens it to righteousness courting wickedness, light dwelling with darkness, Christ having fellowship with Satan, or God’s temple and idols. (2 Cor 6:14-18) If you disobey God on this one important undertaking, you fall out of favor with Him. You will never be compatible. You will not only compromise your profession, but you will also degenerate into the ungodly lifestyle of your partner. It takes less effort to make water dirty than it takes to make it clean. Come on! You are spiritually alive and he/she is spiritually dead. It does not matter how much of a gentleman/lady they seem to be. Sooner than later you are more likely to smell like him/her than he/she is likely to smell like you! On the other hand, if you both are born again and are growing in grace, then you are compatible, regardless of your family history or temperamental variations.

Marriage prospers only to the extent that the partners are prospering spiritually. What I mean is that the partners must be spiritually alive. Both must be born again and are growing in Christ. You may ask, “Hey, I know thousands of non-Christian couples who are living happily”. To which I will say; it depends on what you are calling happiness. Endless compromises and ceasefires don’t constitute happiness. Besides, if such a close relationship as a marriage doesn’t even remind the partners of their need for fellowship with God, it runs short of God’s purpose for it.

How will you know that he/she is born again? He/she will confess with the mouth. He/she will manifest the fruit of the Spirit. He/she will not only be attending church, but will be serving. You must know the Word of God yourself. Otherwise how will you know whether or not he/she is obeying it? If you are not sure still, examine his/her conduct against Galatians 5:22,23. You may also ask family members or church members to tell you what the testimony of this person is. Do whatever you have to do to avoid hypocrites.

And if he/she professes Christianity and acts as a non-believer, the Bible instructs you to terminate the relationship. But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat. (1Co 5:11)

Now you know the right thing to do. If you do not do it, you sin against God (James 4:17)

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LUNCH WITH THE PRESIDENT

On the 24th of November this year I had both lunch and dinner at State House, with president Uhuru. Not so big a thing but it certainly merits entry into my diary. I mean, not that we sat at the same table, no. We didn’t even share the dining room. We didn’t even share the VIP pavilion. But I was among the eight thousand or so people who were seated in the public tent. How did I get there, anyway?
It is Monday 18th November. Because schools are closed for vacation, I am at home doing some tire farming. At around midday my cell phone rings. It’s Eric, the Scouts Club patron. He sounds really excited. He informs me that I am to drive scouts club members to state house the following Saturday. Therefore my full names, national identity card and phone numbers are needed at state house ‘today’. As I hang up I wonder why my details are needed at state house a week before the visit. But that is protocol. You can only be allowed into the royal residence with prior appointment or invitation. Your name must be in the visitors’ book before you arrive.
On arriving at the gate, we stood there in our thousands as the state house orderlies and military personnel called names out, one by one. If you heard your name, you moved forward for confirmation, electronic scanning and physical frisking. Once cleared you proceed into the royal residence. After about four hours the function was over. As I was leaving state house I remembered what the Bible says about an invitation by God, into His eternal residence in Heaven. The day Christ consummates his union with the Redeemed will be like a royal wedding feast.
Rev 19:7-9 Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints.) Then the angel said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!’ ”And he added, “These are the true words of God.”

Blessed indeed are those who are invited. But how were they chosen? First of all, let us note that there is a book in Heaven known as the Lamb’s Book of Life. This is the equivalent of Heaven’s pre-appointed guests. And the Host’s criterion for qualification is this; Ac 2:38-39 “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” To repent is to acknowledge that you are a sinner and cannot save yourself. You need Jesus to give you a new heart. This is the one and only way of getting Jesus to write your name in that Book.

Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 15 If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

The lake of fire is Hell Mk 9:48 where “‘their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.’ It is also known as the second death, the final and everlasting. In Hell the punishment never stops; it is eternal. However, those whose names are in the Book of Life will told by Jesus;

Mt 25:34 ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

Rev 22:35 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.

God is asking you to submit your name to Jesus today. He will write you in the Book of Life, forgive you of all your sins and allow you to live with Him in glory eternally. You can do that now by inviting Him into your heart, submitting to his Lordship and studying and obeying the Bible.

The John 5:4 Controversy

The Bible, according to its own assertion, is entirely God’s own inspired Word. We Christians believe that it is without error.

2 Peter 1:21
“For these words did not ever come through the impulse of men: but the prophets had them from God, being moved by the Holy Spirit.”

It is fixed in the heavens. God Himself warned us sternly against adding or omitting any word or character.

Revelation 22:19
“And if any man takes away from the words of this book, God will take away from him his part in the tree of life and the holy City, even the things which are in this Book.”

The fifth chapter of the gospel of John begins with the account of Jesus healing a man who had been sick for thirty-eight years. Most Bible publications have either omitted the fourth verse or written it in italics or have it written on the footnote area with a note that other manuscripts don’t have it. Several theologians and students claim the words of this verse were sneaked into the Gospel by a Jewish scribe who, may either believed in the superstition concerning that pool or just wrote what the community believed.

If indeed the verse was inserted by a scribe, was he inspired by God? Of course not. Otherwise it could not be treated this exceptionally. Why then did he fix it there. According to the four gospel accounts and Acts, the Pharisees, Sadducees and Scribes were all totally opposed to Jesus’ assertion that He was the Son of God and that the Father had given Him all authority in heaven and on earth to do the Father’s will. Therefore whoever injected the fourth verse intended to make it look as if Jesus’ miraculous healing of this invalid was just a coincidence with the stirring of the water by the Angel of God (the Father) thus robbing Jesus of His divinity and omnipotence. Alternatively, the verse may actually have been there in the authentic manuscripts and what may been inserted is the disclaimer concerning the verse. 

And if that verse was never present when John wrote that book, could the sick man’s answer in the seventh verse have been this….?

John 5:7
“The ill man said in answer, Sir, I have nobody to put me into the bath when the water is moving; and while I am on the way down some other person gets in before me.”

These are words of a person who has been many times beaten to getting ahead of the other sick people. It seems as though he was the least immobile sickling or one without a helper, as he told Jesus. He had witnessed others get healed when the water had variously been stirred. Otherwise he could have told Jesus something such as, “I was told that an angel stirs the water but since I came the water has never been stirred. So I am waiting. If you can stay close to me and help me get in before these other sick people, I will appreciate it.” Or He could have told Jesus that this angel story is a hoax. 

If indeed verse four is a later insertion, then verse seven should be an insertion too. And if verse seven remains in the Bible so should verse four. In other words, it is the fourth verse which makes the presence of the seventh verse palatable.

To those Bible teachers who allege that if at all a healing took place, it was as a result of the healing properties of water, I have this to say; water was created by God. As such, whatever property it may possess, it has been put in it by Him. So whatever water does (including quenching thirst) God does.

In John Chapter 9 Jesus heals a blind man very creatively;

Jn 9:6 Having said this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. 7 “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means Sent). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.

In this incidence, can we say that it is the mud, or the water in the pool or Jesus who healed him? Of course it is Jesus. To claim that water or any other created thing has power to heal is being guilty ascribing glory to a creature instead of the creator.

There are preachers who claim that even if the water (was) moved, it was as a result of seismic activity. But God is always directly and personally involved in all seismic and cosmic movements. Whether it is a volcanic eruption or tectonic shifts, He is responsible!

Job 9:5 He moves mountains without their knowing it and overturns them in his anger. 6 He shakes the earth from its place and makes its pillars tremble.

And if He chose to heal one person whenever He shook the ground beneath the pool; who am I to suppose that He should have done it another way? In fact it was more pious of the Jews who believed that healing took place when the angel of God stirred the water than it is for a post-Pentecost Bible teacher who denies the involvement of God in this miraculous healing. Neither doctors nor herbal nor pharmaceutical medicines heal; they only treat and god alone heals.

Ps 103:2 Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits 3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases.