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Showing posts from April, 2020

THE NECESSITY TO CONGREGATE

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THE PROBLEM


Often we have encountered Christian brethren that have stopped assisting to Church and to worship in community with other fellow Christians. Most of these people allege to have suffered some sort of abuse or disenchantment with the way they were treated in the congregations they assisted originally. They, without being expelled from the local Church, chose to stop assisting in order to live a life in solitude, while still reading the Bible, praying and even watching religious programs through the media, which they consider to be enough for a healthy spiritual life in communion with God.
As justified as it may appear those claims, the decision to isolate it is not the correct one according to the spiritual advice of Scripture.
CHRISTIANITY IS NOT A PHILOSOPHY
Christianity is not just a philosophical theory that can be adopted and lived out in everyday life individually. Christianity is a religion, and like any other religion, it has a mystical aspect and a physical reality at…

CAN CHRISTIANS MARRY PEOPLE OF ANOTHER RELIGION?

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In his second epistle to the Corinthians, St Paul states:
“Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever?” (2Cor 6:14-15)
Even though Paul may be referring to social connections in general, marriage, as one of the most important “social connections” in human life, is certainly included here.
Marriage binds a man and a woman in a single unit that has physical and spiritual dimensions unique to this status, so special that it is compared to the union of Christ and the Church (Gn 2:24; Mk 10:6-8; Eph 5:25-33). For a marriage to be successful there must be coherence in moral beliefs and a common view on life’s purpose. Without this cohesion the harmonious unification of a couple “as one” in the full sense of the word, would be impossible.
Furthermore, St Paul also says: “Bad company ruins good morals” (…

THE DISCIPLES AT EMAUS - LUKE 24:13-35

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COMMENTARY
Two disciples of our Lord were going from Jerusalem to Emaus, a small town to the upper west of Jerusalem, towards the Mediterranean Sea but far from it, on the Sunday that He had resurrected.
It is hard to identify them. The narrative mentions the name of one of them, called Cleophas. We do not know if this is the same husband or father to ‘Mary of Cleophas’ (John 19:25), and father of James and Joseph (Matthew 27:56), or someone totally different. But taking into account the fact that he knew the women who had seen the Lord resurrected (Luke 24:22-23), and being Mary of Cleophas among them, it is hard to believe that it was her husband, in total unbelief, and going away from Jerusalem alone.
The other disciple’s name is not mentioned at all.
Our Lord appeared many times to comfort his disciples in their faith for 40 days. So, He also appeared to these two to test them and confirm them in what they were lacking. He blocked their understanding in order that they could not rec…

THE FATALITY OF THE MARK OF THE BEAST

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The concept of the ‘Mark of the Beast’ comes from the book of Revelation 13:16-18; and it is the ‘mark’ the Antichrist and the False Prophet would demand from all humans in order to ‘buy and sell’.
Many times, afterwards, in the same book of Revelation, this mark is mentioned as a reason for condemnation, mentioning that:
“there will be no rest for those who worship the beast and its image, or for anyone who receives the mark of its name." (Revelation 14:11)
WHAT IS THE MARK
Different theories have been given at different times in Christian history about what exactly is ‘the mark of the beast’.
Some have suggested that historical people’s names like Nero or Mohammed, through future literal electronic insertions into the human body, to simply being symbolic representations. But what ever these theories have suggested, they all agree that it represents conformism to the antichristian system that will persecute Christians at certain time in history, whether past, present or future.
PERS…

JESUS APPEARS TO THOMAS - JOHN 20:19-31

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COMMENTARY
The Gospel today contains three lessons:
The authority of the Church to pronounce absolution of sins, the call to trust in God through Jesus, and the sufficiency of the biblical records as containing all things necessary for salvation.
ABOUT FORGIVENESS
In the evening of the Sunday that our Lord resurrected, He appeared to his 11 disciples and ‘others that were with them’ (Luke 24:33), and after proving to them his physical resurrection, He told them that they would go to announce ‘that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his Name’ to all nations (Luke 24:47). 
Following this, Jesus proceeded to blow on them, not only the 11 apostles, but also all the ‘others who stayed with them’ and after telling them that He will send them with the same command He received from the Father, He also told them:
“Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.” John 20:22-23
The Churc…

A SWORD WILL PIERCE YOUR HEART

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Saint Mary was a humble woman, who gave herself totally to God without reservations, and remained faithful to her call throughout her life until her death. She could have rejected her mission, but without fully understanding it, she accepted it and trusted in God.
With the greatest responsibility she cared for Jesus during his infancy and childhood. She bathed him, fed him, dressed him, and loved him; the God of the Universe Himself in human form.
She probably taught Him to walk, to read and write, to dress up and to prevent danger; everything a mother does for a child she loves.
She felt more than anyone else on earth his pain, during his life, during his Passion and especially during his crucifixion, because she was connected to him physically, genetically, and spiritually. The anguish she felt was that one that Simeon prophesied 33 years earlier in the Temple (Luke 2:35). No one has ever felt so close to the pain of Jesus than Mary, and no one else ever will.
The Humble Servant, who by…

RESURRECTION OF JESUS

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MATTHEW 28:1-10
COMMENTARY
The four gospels tells us that on Sunday morning, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, Joses and Salome (Mark 15:40), followed later by other women (Luke 24:10) came to the tomb of the Lord to anoint Him, but found the stone gate rolled away from the tomb’s entry, and a couple of angels (Luke 24:4; John 20:12) told them that Jesus had resurrected as He had promised (Luke 9:22).
Seems that nobody understood or believed the words of Jesus when He spoke of his physical resurrection. We have no word of Mary, the mother of Jesus being anywhere near the tomb or in expectation of his resurrection, neither the apostles believed it until they saw the body missing (Luke 24:10-12). Mary Magdalene went to the tomb to anoint the body of our Lord because she supposed Him dead (John 20:13-15).
Our Lord Jesus had, to the marvel of Romans, Jews and his own disciples (Matthew 28:12-14), resurrected from the dead, manifesting his power over life and death. He demonstrated no…

A REFLECTION ABOUT EASTER

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The celebration of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus is not strictly a ceremony prescribed in the Bible as a command. The closest thing to it spoken by our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the object of this celebration, it is the memorial of the Holy Supper (Luke 22:19-20; 1Corinthians 11:24-26).
However, it is the first ‘church established’ celebration ever to be kept by Christians since the second century (1). Christians overwhelmed by the greatness of God’s grace poured over humanity, and specially themselves, opted to relive the suffering of our Lord, his crucifixion and his glorious resurrection, so much as to honour Him, as to pass on to further generations the historical reality of this event, the greatest of human history.
Nevertheless, through history, this has been occasion to many discrepancies than point of union among Christians.
At the beginning, Christians celebrated the passion of Jesus according to the Jewish calculation of the Pascha, starting in the evening of 14th…