Proclaim the Good News

“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners…to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn…and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair…They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor” (Isaiah 61: 1-3).

“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you…See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn (Isaiah 60: 1-3)

“If you follow my decrees and are careful to obey my commands…I will send you rain in its season, and the ground will yield its crops and the trees their fruit… Your threshing will continue until grape harvest and the grape harvest will continue until planting, and you will eat all the food you want and live in safety in your land… “I will grant peace in the land, and you will lie down and no one will make you afraid. I will remove wild beasts from the land, and the sword will not pass through your country…You will pursue your enemies, and they will fall by the sword before you…Five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall by the sword before you…”I will look on you with favor and make you fruitful and increase your numbers, and I will keep my covenant with you…You will still be eating last year’s harvest when you will have to move it out to make room for the new…I will put my dwelling place[a] among you, and I will not abhor you…I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people…I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt so that you would no longer be slaves to the Egyptians; I broke the bars of your yoke and enabled you to walk with heads held high” (Lev. 26: 3 -13).

Oppressed for too Long, what next?

The Right to Fight Back?

Police killings of African -Americans in America sparks widespread demonstrations and riots. On the one side many so-called white folks put it down to a number of things, poverty, the Democrats who gave them handouts, and not allowing them to work for a living. They claim it has nothing to do with racism, being disenfranchised, refused jobs, and targeted by the police. They point black on black violence that in Chicago alone that killed 2,500 people. They do not see it has anything to do with white oppressing blacks. Some even claimed there was no slavery and black people are just lazy and not wanting to work. In effect whatever happens to African Americans, they have themselves to blame. In effect they are creating the greatest rape of historical fact and these is on the edge of insanity and lunacy. White folks (so-called will never accept the greatest crime of the history of the human second only to the atrocities committed against the Israelite nation.

Many who have never lived with the life of the oppressed, the life of the disenfranchise, in the environment of the poor and those unfairly targeted will often look for an easy answer when they respond or lashed out. A child crying for help will have parent dunning to the sound of wailing. When that cry is heard in society very few run to assist, because the world is shaped to satisfy the rich and privileged. To answer why people riot they look for easy solution that only cover the wounds. They will point fingers at poverty and violence and ignore the very obvious race, and poverty issues and the combination of other social deprivation issues at play in the inner cities. Do people have the right or should they be given the right to fight back?

We cannot and must not advocate violence, fighting fire with fire. We advocate fighting back through peaceful means but people must have the right to fight back. The justice system must be overhauled so justice is not only be done but must be seen to be done. Fight through the courts, fight through the education system, fight through the enterprise environments, cease the opportunity not to fall or fail because they say you will. Fight back with love, and though peaceful means, through education and knowledge, empower your personal self, as many great leaders advised, follow Dr Martin Luther King an advocate of peace but who was brutally murdered.

People who are generally happy and content with their personal lives and opportunities afforded them usually have very little or nothing to be discounted about. However financial and economic oppression, being dispossession and with little hope of breaking free of poverty, is a recipe for disaster, civil unrest and this breeds crime. One ethnic group being regularly and unfairly targeted by law enforcement, being only a fraction of the population yet more are in prison than any other ethnicity, this is a problem that needs solving.

When a citizen from an ethnic group are gunned down and killed so easily, sometimes only for breaking a traffic light sign. Something is wrong with the system, when someone is running away from police yet he is shot and killed! When a young man is wrestled to the ground and shot by the police, or a young boy shot by a security guard, and the justice system failed to punish him something is deeply and gravely wrong. When the time comes when black lives, matter equally as any other ethnic groups things will turn around and we have less riots.

Very importantly, a group existing under constant scrutiny disproportionately more than any other, and with a justice systems that holds no officer to account something is deeply wrong! This bears signs of the Klan days when African Americans men were lynched by white mobs, and both police and judges were involved. There is a combinations of many different dynamics at play here and which must be addressed speedily for their to be any sign of justice. I do not think we can trivialise it by saying it is only one thing or the other that provoke riots. If all the social, economic problems are addressed then there will be a civil society, packed with peace, contentment and respect for all. Treat all people with respect and as equal under the law, solve the socio-economic problems of the inner cities, give people a reason for living, give them hope for the future and people have less reasons to demonstrate against police brutality or riot.

While in Britain, the actions of police officers against Africans, are no way perfect, stop and search a bother, a few have been killed, so we cannot be complacent. Deaths after police contacts is no way near those in north America. However, we must fight all unfair target of a particular ethnic group with the peaceable fruit of righteousness, the way Christ fight yet never return fire with fire. We must walk and act with and in righteousness, but it must be married to justice. Kill our enemies,the world of unfairness with peace, they cant take it when you return peace in return to acts of bigotry and pettiness. Just go out of the way to be nice, empower yourself with knowledge, use your wisdom and fight for understanding, but fight. See and know that they would have you fight, then they will have reason to say I told you so, then they would have reason to shoot and kill you. Just never harbour hate in your heart, return with love for your enemy and they who will despite-fully use and kill you! Africans in the ghettos of America, and every where rise up, stand your ground, learn the lessons of life well. Pushed too far, targeted and oppressed, the easiest quickest human response is to fight fire with fire, but love heals all wounds. Fight with the love of God, and love for mankind.

Love & Accept your Unique and Individual self

Every person was placed on earth for a purpose and that means we merits being with someone who make us happy. However happiness is not an entitlement, it is a gift of who we are as an individual in the sight of God. Though our uniqueness does not merits  or guarantee success, that is something we work for, but our individuality threatens some, they want to make you, force you to be like them. Uniqueness and individuality in the presence of fools creates tensions and uncertainty, they cannot deal with you because you resides on another level, a power level they cannot understand. However in the presence of greatness, these differences are game changers, they look on the status quo and are not happy until something gives. They understand that they are place within their context as change agents, to make a difference for the better, not worse. They bring another element of inspiration, another level of possibilities, which the blind mind and heart cannot understand and cope with. They become defensive and intolerant to you, they label you impossible, and you are a threat. In the secular environment this is shameful, a tragedy even, but in the body of Christ, this is pitiful. But why is this so blatant in churches where leaders, are meant to be inspiration to others and not oppressors?

When God wants change agents, people who will not be afraid to tackle and sort difficult situations. People who will grab others by the scruff of the neck and pull them forward drag them into the twenty first century, while chiding them for hanging onto the nineteenth century for so long. The church was not born in the nineteenth century but in first century A.D! God broth people into the church and gifted them to serve in the office He alone chose, the church then should be engaged to find these people, train and give them their marching orders. They should not create offices, and put in the wrong roles, this is about saying to God, I hear what you say, but I will do it my way. Uniqueness and individuality should not be a threat to anyone who knows and walk with God. Their spiritual eyes should guide them to see, that the gifted among them are unique and add value to the offices God chose for them. They add value to Churches, to families and friends, to communities and our world.

It is not wrong for us to want someone in our circles who will not complicate life, someone who understands our values, who will not cause us pain or grief. This is everyone’s desire; however, life is not so narrow, we do not always get the people around that are free from pain or from inflicting pain. We live in a world made up of all sorts, but it is only our friends who can hurt us. I do not accept the phrase that “sometimes, the first step to forgiveness, is the understanding the other person is an idiot”! If anyone accepts this notion that would have only extended our own misunderstanding of an individual and the situation he is in. We are not just undermining his individuality, his personality, we are disrespecting his humanity.

One, who is created in the image of God, should be appreciated and respected. One’s mental state should not be a matter for criticism and put-downs. Luke remind us of Christ advised ” Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.’ Jesus never looked down on others; never undermine their mental state or ability. If they reject you, they reject God, because you are a child of God with uniqueness skills and abilities. Forgive, walk away, but never stop loving them in the same vain that you are loved, and forgiven by God.

Weep / pray for the Peace of Jerusalem (Israel)

“The Lord has rejected all the warriors in my midst;

he has summoned an army against me to crush my young men.

In his wine-press the Lord has trampled Virgin Daughter Judah.

“This is why I weep and my eyes overflow with tears.

No one is near to comfort me, no one to restore my spirit.

My children are destitute because the enemy has prevailed.”

Zion stretches out her hands,but there is no one to comfort her.

The Lord has decreed for Jacob that his neighbours become his foes;

Jerusalem has become an unclean thing among them. (Lam. 1:15 – 17 NIV)

This is what the Lord says: “A voice is heard in Ramah, mourning and great weeping,

Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.”

This is what the Lord says:“Restrain your voice from weeping and your eyes from tears,

for your work will be rewarded, declares the Lord. “They will return from the land of the enemy.So there is hope for your descendants,” declares the Lord.

“Your children will return to their own land.“I have surely heard Ephraim’s moaning:

‘You disciplined me like an unruly calf,and I have been disciplined.

Restore me, and I will return, because you are the Lord my God..

(Jer. 31:15 – 18 NIV)

Discreet Islamic Annexation of the West

Does Europe have reason to fear the unobtrusive conquest by Islam? More poignantly, does the west have reason to fear the creeping takeover by the Islamic religion of Mohammad? Make no mistake this is the most pressing issues the world is facing. For while the west take its eyes of the ball, being more concerns on who should be the next US president, and watching immigrants numbers, borders are being breached on every side. The conquest is not done through means of extremism only. The violence and killings in Europe, France Germany and Belgium targeted recently is but a side issue to repeat the lie, Islam is a peaceful religion.

Christians are mercilessly assassinated in Islamic countries, yet they will claim that their faith is peaceful and compatible with Christianity. They will even say that they believe in Christ. Well if they believe and accept Christ as a prophet, there would be no place for Mohammad and Islam in the world. Killings Pakistan and supported by people in Government, rejection of churches in Saudi Arabia is more than testimony they do not accept Christ and Christians. Recent report coming out of Turkey, government and supporters using the failed coup as a shield, are targeting Christians on a grand scale.

For many years’ streams of Islamic agents, in mosques stating the religion intent and goal, to conquer the west. Yet thousands more have flooded western institutions of learning and public places of authority spreading the message. They flood every radio talk show, TV audiences, and public debates to spread this religion so packed with vile evil extremism. This is more than a worrying development; it is a clear and present danger to the west, to Christianity and the message of Christ. The threat of the movement is obvious to keen bible watchers and some commentators, but the public seems to be a trance.

The mayor of London Sadiq Khan repeatedly says that Islam and western values are compatible and the west has nothing to fear. With Saudi Arabian funding, they have conquered the heart of Europe, and they are gaining grounds further afield. However, France is made up of 15% immigrant population, the growing threats and influence of Islam is causing panic among the French. Tariq Ramadan, a Swiss academic, philosopher and writer said, “Islam is a French religion and the French language is a language of Islam”. It is not surprising with the growing influence of the religion, the recent killings in France that such a prominent scholar holds such a view. Tariq, professor of Contemporary Islamic Studies in the Faculty of Oriental Studies at St Antony’s College, Oxford and also teaches at the Oxford Faculty of Theology is representing the views of many in Islam whose sole goal is to see Islam conquer the west in their lifetime.

However, if the west failed to see the role of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Turkey, and the rising influence of the brand of Islam they advocate as a threat. They should not be fooled by many others who are plainly and openly selling their brand. Many today may not remember the Iranian revolution and the rise of Ayatollah Khomeini in 1989. For a while Iran has been side lined, sanctioned and punished by the west for trying to develop a nuclear weapon. A recent peace deal by the Obama administration now see Iran returning to world acceptance, and now doing business with the west again. Israel is warning that this deal is dangerous, and is only allowing Iran to create a weapon under the guise of peaceful means. Iran constantly threatened the total annihilation of the state of Israel from the face of the earth was no small matter. However, Dalil Boubakeur, who is rector of the Grand Mosque of Paris, gave full and unequivocal backing to the Fatwa placed on Salman Rushdie by Khomeini. It was only in 2015 that, Boubakeur called for the conversion of churches into mosques, meaning that Christianity should be abolished.

If what is happening in the rest of Europe is not alarming enough, under prime minster David Cameron, Britain instituted sharia law, and so now British and Islamic laws are operating side by side. It means Islamic organisations are dispensing Islamic justice through more than 85 sharia courts attached to mosques in the British Isles. In most banks and lending institutions, if you apply for a loan, it is offered on either British or sharia law terms. No Islamic state will even consider let alone to institute Christian values or laws in their countries. In Russia, this would never be Russian law for all who reside in its borders. Yet in a modern democracy Britain, this is the state of play. The west is bending over to please Islam and Arabic state because they have oil money to spend, and the west will sell its morals, turn a blind eye to hate for the sake of money spent in their countries to boost their economies. Western morals is on sale, or sold to the highest bidder for the price of inward investments.

It has long been said that civil war in Europe is what the, Islamic State, new kids on the block, and extremist group is working for. Therefore, they are releasing a blind authoritarianism, targeting France, Germany, Belgium and Britain and other key European states to achieve their stated goal. Britain escape the horrors others are experiencing because she is separated physically of mainland by a strip of water, but many say it is inevitable that Britain will be hit. Their main aim is that the Muslim population of these countries will show solidarity with the revolutionary minority and take up arms. Britain is threatened equally with the rest of the west, but not yet, but there are still worse possible outcomes. That nothing serious happens up to present, the government increase armed police on the streets, and they continue to be on the alert.

Finally, though we watch with awe at the level of atrocities the extremists groups can muster. There are many real moderate Muslims who are targets silenced or murdered for speaking out or objecting to the violence. There are more moderate voices in Islam than the men of violence. So one cannot pool them all together as unfriendly, or dangerous. For many watchers it is not so much the absence of violence within the majority that is the problem, but that Islam is not the true message of God. That for many is the crux of the matter, the real issue and it will not change. Christians believe in Christ and Muslims believe in Muhammad, where is the confusion? In the messenger Mohammad, the message, Islam, it is about credibility, truth and accuracy. For many, Christ is the son of God, and the only prophet sent from God to save humanity. Muslims believe Mohammad is the final prophet and Christianity is wrong. History continues to prove, Christ the son of God came, died was resurrected, and returned to heaven where he came from. He fulfilled prophesies, worked miracles and heal the soul of many, no one, no religion can replace Him!

Killed any Giants Lately?

Giants, they are many but they must fall, they must die! We all see and experience life giants, faced them, struggle with them, fight with them daily, but too many of us cave in to them, they slay us instead. We lie wounded on the field of battle, because we give up the fight, and lose the battle before we even began. Don’t ever give up the struggle, fight for what you believe, for who and what you want to be in life. Of a surety when we give up, and stop believing, we stop fighting, then we will unashamedly be defeated in the race for life treasures. No matter how many times your hopes are dashed, your dreams blocked or shattered, your goals shaded, and you are knocked about, tossed around, listless, open your eyes, keep them open, stand firm and fight the enemy, even if you are punched drunk, fight. Role with the punches, knocked down many times yes. But the greatest of fighters never stay down, no matter the size of the opposition, they never fear and they don’t quit. They became great because they have someone in their corners, they mend the cuts, soothe the swelling and bruises, they tell them bob and weave, your winning. Though sometimes they know its time to throw in the towel, they allowed them to continue, sometimes unashamedly foolish. But they believe and encourage and soon, sometimes a lucky punch, they turn the fight around.

Giants issue intimidating threats, but never fear, never stay down, fight. If you messed up, pick yourself up, wash up, brush up, and start over again! Opportunities denied, fight. Plans shaded, your ethnicity, your skin,your age, becomes a problem. When they refuse you, scorn you, turn their backs on you, that should give you more gusto to fight, tell them you will do it anyway, fight. The price for the race of life never goes to the quitters, but to those who continue through the struggle to the bitter end. They persevere and win over seemingly insurmountable odds. Know and believe this my friends, you are a winner from your starting point – in the womb. The sperm that got to the egg that created you had to run a marathon, through hostile territories, and struggle through strong defences.

That person is you! Satan wants you to believe you are a looser, but God say you are a winner from the start. You are because He is! Slay those giants of fear, and fight for your life and the battle you must win. The greater the fight you face in life, the greater your victory, and the sweeter the price you will win! Learn a lesson from King David. “And David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with spear and javelin, and I come to you with the Name of the Lord of Hosts, the God of the armies of Israel which you have taunted”. (I Sam. 17:45). You must fight but not the kind of fight Satan wants. Satan wants you to get physical, and hate your brother. But your brother/sister are not the problem, Stan is. He is the father of lies and unaware Christians, those who let down their defences, whose shield have been compromised are his weapons of war. He will use us if we let him, to become torn in our brothers side, a pain in the neck of the saints of God, he wants us disjointed and disunited. But we must be smart, develop a well devised battle plan, seasoned with peace. Don’t give him an inch or he will take a yard, fight against him, slay him with the giant weapon of Love.

Giant taunters are in the ranks of God’s army, enemies are in the Christian camp, they presume to be for the Lord’s, but they are not. They Satan’s hoards, fight against seasoned, battle hardened soldiers of God. Instead of joining forces and fight against Satan, the real enemy of God, we allow him to turn us against each other. Satan and his battalion present themselves as angels of light, but they are impostors, they represents Satan’s kingdom, not God’s. We wrestle not against flesh and blood but against rulers of darkness, spiritual powers, giants in high places. If they who fight against you God’s elect, were God’s people, they would build you up, but because they are enemies of Christ they fight you. Yet my friends, if you hate them, fight with them, you are just like them, so kill these giants of hate with love. They who resist us, reject us, deny us, block us must be shown love in the morning, and in the evening too, we forgive them seventy times seven. The sure way of defeating, slaying satanic giants is by our gestures of love and peace. You must be different from them, you represent the kingdom of peace and love, where no Satanic giant can win or concur. The battle against Satanic forces, the giants of this world is not ours it is the Lord, stand back and watch the salvation of the Lord.

Is peace a present reality, a dream, or a future hope?

The cry for peace in our world is a constant. Every news outlet, every public speaker, every family in war torn areas are making their voices heard; this is a prevailing cry for peace. However, with the constant wars, bombings, and suicide deaths at no time in history is peace more necessary, yet it is more elusive now than in the history of human existence. For there exist such levels of hate, haughty spirit, people and nations so fixed in their ways, nobody is willing to take a step back and allows peace to reign in their hearts and ultimately in the world. It will take an injection of Christ, the light of the world to bring peace. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” Dr Martin Luther King Jr. Without the light of the gospel of peace in us, the darkness of war will prevail.

Dr King makes a very important link between peace and love. Love is the foundation to peace, without love between men and women and between nations, there will be little hope of peace. God promised to ancient Israel, “I will grant peace in the land, and you will lie down and no one will make you afraid. I will remove wild beasts from the land, and the sword will not pass through your country” (Lev 26: 6). Whatever hopes or dreams the world have of peace, it can only materialised when God gives it. For man with his sinful nature competitive and envious spirit, can never find peace without yielding to God.

The psalmist explained, “Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble” (Psa. 119: 165). People get so easily offended, you just have to look at them let alone touch them. We lose our cool when we imagined hate, or think someone is being distrustful and dishonourable. If we walk with God, even if we prove hurtful actions of others, we are not offended. The peace of God comes from within us, a gift that comes from God that reassures and comforts us even when war is waging on the outside. Christians, those who love the Lord, do recognise that peace exist somewhere within us all, and that there does exist a supreme being, that is creating and recreating  the inner self, that spiritual us is being renewed daily, and we are at peace, despite the battles around us and soon will be eternally.

The Hebrew understands that true peace is not just the absent of war, but is one internally, and so a present reality for Christ followers. One of the first and very important Hebrew words most people learn is “Shalom” and which carries three significant meanings. First, it is use as a welcome, when meeting or greeting Shalom used to say hello. Shalom is also use when someone is saying, Goodbye or farewell, the same as when we say bye in English. Shalom also means Peace, but this kind is not the absence of war. The root of the word is very significant in Hebrew as speakers and student of the language would understand. Importantly Shalom carries additional meanings of harmony, wholeness, completeness, prosperity, welfare and tranquillity. In addition, it describes someone or something that is complete or perfect.

When speakers of the language say goodbye to someone in Hebrew they convey a blessing on them, “Lech Le-shalom”, or accurately “go in peace”.  There are many ways to speak about God and one of them is, “the One who makes peace in the heavens”. Alternatively, as Hebrews speakers say in their prayers, “oseh shalom bi-meromav”, they are saying, He who makes peace in high places. That inner peace, the indwelling of the Spirit of God, and convey to the world through prayers and behavioural attitude, will inspire outer strength to cope with life’s wars. Moses and the patriarchs of Israel had come to know God as je-ho’-va sha’-lom (Yahweh shalom, “Yahweh is peace”), the God of all peace or “I am thy peace”. They understood easily, the strongest desire of our heart is to be at peace with our creator and with ourselves.

The proof that Israel and the patriarchs heart was at peace was that they were filled with praise to God. The Israelites had more troubles on every side, wars frequently in order to maintain their existence. Though it was God who delivered them from their enemies, the praise was not necessarily for what God had done for them, but for who God was and is. The psalmist says, “The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace” (Psalm 29: 11). Moses, David and the Israelite’s were living out the main purpose of humankind, which is to glorify God and delight in him forever. That is where true peace abounds. Peace for Christians is a present experience, we life in peace despite the turmoil that exist around us. The world without God and Christ do not have this peace, but we are the city set on the hill and cannot be hid. Therefore, today, take a lesson from the Hebrews and bring a blessing of peace into your environment, with a blessing for the home, church, friends, schools, and offices and in the transportation system.

Fly on Wings of Dream

When we imagined change, we vow at the New Year, for a new chapter, yet by the middle of the year, we find we are playing the same old tune, singing the same old song. We cannot envision change by doing the same old things, same failed people, same failed system; we will get the same results! Nevertheless, we can choose the right people, but with the wrong motives. Equally, the wrong motives used in choosing, though the people are right. The right and proper mix is having right motives with the right people, otherwise there is compromise in the system.

One cannot plan for change by using the same old leaky bucket. Then we complain about existing and unseen circumstances that constantly crops up and we are without a clue in the heavens how to solve them. We hide behind someone else, we point fingers and we blame someone else. Never did in the chronicles of history revealed, a king made by dwelling on his circumstances, hiding in his bedchamber. Staying in his closet, the crown be his may never be. Choices to be made, we all faced daily with dread, determines the future.

There is a crossroad before all, differing directions paved with danger, they points to uncertain destination. Nevertheless, a path we must take, only but one choice we can make though uncertain the result. So be sure of the choice, be lifted by your prayers, fly on the wings of your dream, rely on the strength and the depth of your faith, where the solitude of your soul take rest, in the Christ of peace.