Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Congratulations, Steven and Jorin!

On a personal note, hearty congratulations to Steven and Jorin for starting on the wonderful journey of marriage. It's good to see the gang together again in this photo!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Christian Spirituality of Vocation

Discovering our vocation is a key element of discipleship. That's why I am excited to discuss this topic later this month in Klang. If you happen to be around, do join us at the worship service below:

Date: Sunday (30 Jan 2011)
Time: 11 am

I also hope to attend the event below by an eminently qualified professor Dr Scorgie who will speak on the topic: “A Christian Spirituality of Vocation” : The Gift of Purpose and Significance...

What is the significance of my life?

The modern way of life leaves this need largely unsatisfied…

But the good news is that the Christian faith offers something that satisfies this need for meaning. It is called the gift of Christian vocation. The word vocation comes from the biblical ideal of a calling upon one’s life—that is, a divine assignment or commission to do certain things, things that will matter for eternity. It is a calling to participate in the larger purposes of God.

But still the question: How do we discern our personal calling in life? How do we know where we fit in the grand scheme of things?

Come and find out more in a session with Dr Glen Scorgie at Canaanland, Ara Jaya!

10 February 2011, 8pm to 9.15pm
(Free Admission but pre-registration required)
Venue: Canaanland HQ @ Ara Jaya
25 Jalan PJU 1A/41B
NZX Commercial Centre
Ara Jaya, 47301 PJ
Tel : 603-78850540/1/2

Glen G. Scorgie, a Canadian, has been professor of theology at Bethel Seminary San Diego since 1996. He is a past president of the Canadian Evangelical Theological Association with a Ph.D. from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.

Dr. Scorgie’s regular seminary teaching is in systematic theology and ethics, plus courses in historical theology, Christian spirituality, world religions, apologetics and movie theology. He has written A Little Guide to Christian Spirituality (2007) and is the general editor of the Zondervan Dictionary of Christian Spirituality (forthcoming 2011). His current research interests include gender, ecology, Christianity’s global mission, and theologically-informed approaches to Christian spirituality.

For years he has been involved in the ministries of a Chinese church in San Diego, and lectures regularly in Asia. His wife Kate is a professor of graduate education at the San Diego campus of Azusa Pacific University. They have three young-adult daughters, two sons-in-law, and a grandson.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Reason For God @Puchong

Do you have thinker friends who ask questions and searching for reasons to believe?
Do you have believer friends who want to address such questions with clear thinking?

CDPC Puchong will organize a series of 6 sessions discussing difficult objections that people have regarding the Christian faith.

1. Isn’t the Bible a Myth?
2. How Can You Say There Is Only One Way to God?
3. What Gives You the Right to Tell Me How to Live My Life?
4. Why Does God Allow Suffering?
5. Why Is the Church Responsible for So Much Injustice?
6. How Can God Be Full of Love and Wrath at the Same Time?

The first session will start on
Date: 13 February 2011 (Sunday),
Time: 12.00 pm
Venue: City Discipleship Presbyterian Church Puchong

Frequency: Once a month
Recommended Reading: The Reason For God by Tim Keller

If you are keen to join the discussion group, please contact David Chong at "hedonese at yahoo dot com"
The discussions will kick off with a 20 minute DVD featuring Keller in conversation with a group of people to address their doubts and objections to Christianity. Captured live and unscripted, Keller and the group explore the truth of Christianity.

The point is not about getting armed with generic arguments and answers, rather to be equipped to become conversant with ways to sensitively, humbly and gently talk about the objections in an informed way in the context of friendship or a group.

The study guides can be downloaded here

With you in finding the reason for hope,

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Zeitgeist The Movie

Some friends have been asking about the Internet film Zeitgeist that "attempts to make the case that Jesus was a fiction created by cobbling together pieces of various myths... The challenge in “Zeitgeist” is why we should consider the stories of Adonis, Osiris, and the other pagan mystery saviors as fables, yet treat as factual essentially the same story told in a Jewish context."

Greg Koukl did a good job responding to these charges  and here's a good soundbyte:

"Michael Shermer raises this myth challenge in his debates with Christians. He says there are other dying messiahs and rising messiahs all over ancient literature. Jesus is just another one of them.

Part of my response to that is this. I could go up to Michael Shermer and say to him that he was Michael Shermer, right? And when he responded he was, I could say no, he couldn’t be. Why not? Because I just met five different people who said they were Michael Shermer in the last three weeks. Of course, it doesn’t mean this isn't the real Shermer no matter how many imposters there are. The existence of impostors doesn’t undermine the possibility that there could be the real Shermer. That fact is determined by different information and not by counting the heads of the impostors."
John Dickson of Public Christianity and Dr Chris Forbes set the historical data straight here:

Zeitgeist: Time to discard the Christian story? from CPX on Vimeo.

For more download details, check out Public Christianity

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Sermon Podcast: Thirsting After God in the Desert

Many times we relate to God in terms of rules and regulations, a list of do’s and don’ts, of duties and obligations. Of course, there is right and wrong and holy commandments that God has given us to keep.

But God’s worth, beauty and manifold excellencies are not glorified by joyless duty, but by our joyful, willing and obedient delight in all that He is. We obey and serve Him because we want to, because we desire to honor and please Him. Not because we grudgingly have to. God loves a cheerful giver. He also loves a cheerful worshipper.

To put it another, our duty is to delight in God. (Psalm 37:4) The Westminster Shorter Catechism would say that the main purpose of our existence is to glorify God and ENJOY Him forever.

Check out the sermon podcast here and let me know what you think.

Sermon Podcast: Discover Your Calling In Life

Now how do we find out what is God’s call for us? What are our spiritual gifts?

Must we hear audible voices from heaven before we know it? This is not something overly difficult or mysterious that only super spiritual Christians can attain.

I’ve found these FIVE simple questions in Gordon Smith’s book “Courage and Calling” to be helpful to discern our Life Calling. The idea is not to get easy formulaic answers that pin down God’s will right away. Your answers may change as you explore and learn more in life, but they are helpful to me, at least, in the process of discerning God’s calling for us.

1) What do you feel joy doing? What is my deepest desire or passion?

2) What are you good at doing? What are my abilities, skills, spiritual gifts, mutant powers?

3) What do you feel are the biggest needs of the people around you?

4) What is your unique personality?

5) What do others in school, family, circle of friends, church community say about me? Is there confirmation from the Body of Christ?
Check out the podcast here and let me know what you think

Sermon Podcast: Rojak Spirituality

Recently, Malaysia was engaged in a public debate over the meaning of pluralism and how it relates to civil society. The need is pressing for a dialogue platform for the various religious communities to be able to come together and discuss issues affecting our lives together.

Yet some Muslim scholars are understandably concerned that pluralism as an ideology may confuse or weaken their faith. In this podcast, I discuss briefly how Christians can, at the same time, hold to a conviction in the uniqueness of Christ and yet be eager to participate in respectful dialogues with other faiths without fear or compromise.
Check it out and let me know what you think.