Some of Moses’ Laws are Sinful

How can you say that you are wise, and that you know my laws? Look, the laws have been changed by dishonest scribes. Your wise men are put to shame; they are confused and trapped. They have rejected my words; what wisdom have they got now? So I will give their fields to new owners and their wives to other men. Everyone, great and small, tries to make money dishonestly. Even prophets and priests cheat the people. (Jeremiah 8:8-10)

Moses’ Laws contained laws that do not match up to the will of God, but the people are not excused from these errors. Jesus mentioned some people’s hearts have been hardened. (Mark 10:5) Laws under such people’s distortions are unjust and full of spite.

We can also find here that greed is a contributing factor as well. The Hebrew people’s insistence on keeping slaves were a cause of their downfalls.

Against unjust laws we have to rely on Jesus, for he has set us free from the laws of sin and death. In him we can claim our holiness, and nothing in this world can separate us from Jesus.

Attributes of God

God is Love

God is love, and those who live in love live in union with God and God lives in union with them. (1 John 4:16)

We love because God first loved us.  If we say we love God, but hate others, we are liars.  For we cannot love God, whom we have not seen, if we do not love others, whom we have seen. (1 John 4:19)

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.  (John 3:16-17)

God the Creator

God looked at everything he had made, and he was very pleased.  Evening passed and morning came – that was the sixth day.  (Genesis 1:31)

God is Good

Every good gift and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.  (James 1:17)

God the Merciful

But God’s mercy is so abundant, and his love for us is so great, that while we were spiritually dead in our disobedience he brought us to life with Christ.  It is by God’s grace that you have been saved. (Ephesian 2:4-5)

God the Helper

Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the merciful Father, the God from whom all help comes!  He helps us in all our troubles, so that we are able to help others who have all kinds of troubles, using the same help that we ourselves have received from God.  (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

God longs to be with us

The Lord says, “Let my people return to me.  Remove every obstacle from their path!  Build the road and make it ready!  I am the high and holy God, who lives forever.  I live in a high and holy place, but I also live with people who are humble and repentant, so that I can restore their confidence and hope.”  (Isaiah 57:14-15)


Lord, you are the God we can know. We are your children, and we wish to be close to you. In you we have our hope eternal. You sent helpers to us when we are suffering or discouraged. May you bless us to become other people’s helpers as well.  Amen!

Recovery of my Emotions

When I was suffering with the burden of social anxieties, survival was all I cared. I was terrified of my fears and anxieties that I tried to suppress my emotions.  I reasoned that if I felt nothing, then fear should pop up less.  However, this did not work for me.

Sometimes I tried to fight my anxieties. This might work for a few seconds, but I would get an adrenaline burst, then things would just fall apart. Sometimes I would try to be passive and stay limp, but I would just end up suffering in silence.

In year 1992 I started seeing a psychologist. At my first appointment with my therapist I dumped a lot of my sad stories on her. I probably cried a river during that session. I was a little embarrassed, but I felt quite relieved afterwards.

If tears could make me feeling better, then I realized that I might not need to suppress my emotions. Rather, I wished to experience emotions like normal people do.

I had one book that my therapist recommended me to read, and it had a practice on how to uncover emotions. When I initially read it it sounded far-fetched to me. I was supposed to lie on a bed, and be very relaxed. After reaching this point then I should prompt myself to bring out my feelings.

After a while I felt an emotion starting to emerge. I was feeling a very strong sense of anger coming out; I was raging against all the suffering that I had to go through. The unfairness of it! My anger was so strong that I was literally shaking.

I felt a different emotion wanting to come out. It was sadness. I felt all the sadness when I was forced to be by myself without friends. This was also very intense and overwhelming. I had another bout of crying.

After my emotions subsided I felt more peaceful and more hopeful for a reason that I could not explain. I vowed to experience all my emotions as they were, and no longer suppress them.

I told my experience to my therapist in the next session. She did not criticize my rashness, but commented that I did very well, and that I might begin to recover soon. I felt happy after hearing that news.

Open Dialog Wins the Day

The Irish people just had a referendum on same-sex marriage. The enthusiasm of the young people who wanted to right a historical wrong was impressive.  We saw the hashtag of #hometovote, and the array of photos demonstrating a heartening spirit of caring.

There were massive voter participation, and outreach as well.  Ireland had a significant Catholic identification. The church bishops urged voting ‘no’, but the laity evidently decided to follow the examples of Jesus, whose ministry showed concerns for the welfares of the marginalized people.

We cannot guarantee the same result in a different location, but when the people involved are open to an honest dialog, the Holy Spirit can help people of different backgrounds bridge a gap that has separated us for thousands of years.  For now we can be grateful because God’s grace is open to us even in this broken world.

Happiness Fights Back

Love one another.

God loves everyone, for we are all his beloved children.  We have to fix our own hearts, in order to do the same.

The best is yet to come!  Our God is the God of the Good News and hope.

Turning focus from a perfect world to an intimate relationship with God. It does not mean that we can’t change the world, but changes have to start from within first.


(Credits: notes from Twelve Small Group training)

Jesus Standing with Gay People Too

One thing I know for certain is that the Scripture belongs to all of us.  It is not solely reserved for the religious conservatives.  The Scripture told a story about our God who stands with people nobody will love by sending his beloved son to live with us for a time.

Jesus talked about loving our neighbors: “If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that?  And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others?” (Matthew 5:46-47)

Why does God creates gay people to live among us?  God did this not to provoke us, but to see who among us will truly love them as our neighbors.  It is only by loving the people who are different than us can we fulfill Jesus’ commandment to us.

Matthew chapter 19 has been long used to justify the value of traditional marriage, how God created man and woman, and that God blessed their joining with marriage.  All that was true, but gay people also received a blessing when Jesus talked about the fact not everyone can be in a traditional marriage.

“For there are different reasons why men cannot marry: some, because they were born that way; others, because men made them that way; and others do not marry for the sake of the Kingdom of heaven.”  (Matthew 19:12)

We know Jesus did not marry for the sake of the Kingdom of heaven.  Some males lost the ability to marry because they were castrated as a condition for providing royal service.  The people who were born unable to participate in a traditional marriage included gay people.  Jesus made a point that castrated people as well as gay people can be included in the circle of holy people.  Jesus stood with these people on that day, and he stands with these people today.

Gay marriage is not the same as traditional marriage, but for an instance of gay marriage to be successful it requires blessing from God as well.  One of my favorite Scripture passage was from Galatians:

But the Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control.  There is no law against such things as these.  (Galatians 5:22-23)

A gay marriage based on love carrying no laws of prohibition is not that hard to imagine. If that indeed come to pass then we have to remember again that the Scripture belongs to all us, yes even to the gay or the castrated people too.


Heavenly father, may your justice stay with our nation.  We pray for your people who cannot marry right now; they are our brothers and sisters too.  We also give thanks because you send Holy Spirit to sustain us, even though people do not listen to each other but talk past each other.  May your will tame our hearts so we can accept all the blessings you intended for us.  In your name, Amen.

Our Voices Will Not Be Silenced

Heavenly father, we lift up a mother’s testimony to you. We share her concerns with our community. Lord let your Holy Spirit cleanse out our worldly prejudice so every teen who come out can be recognized as a beloved child of God. May truth guide our honest dialogues. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

knitting soul

voice

In 1988, I met Jesus on a muddy hillside in Pennsylvania.

I had caught glimpses before, but there, with the smell of pine needles and the body odor of a few hundred unwashed humans, I saw him clearly and I fell in love. I had been raised in the Church, but it took a long haired man in jeans and a t-shirt to tell the story in a way that broke through my teen mind and show me just how much God loved me.

I stood on that hillside, tears running down my cheeks, my normally loud voice quietly whispering the prayer that I finally understood. I experienced something revolutionary in those woods, and was unable to turn away. I had felt the love of a Parent who would never turn their face from me, and I was changed. A voice that wanted to speak that love to others was awakened…

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