August 2008


Today, I will continue sharing regarding the Biblical examples of Faith written in Heb 11. The next few verses talks about Issac, Jacob and Joseph (Heb 11:20-22)

Issac
As talked about in the previous post regarding Abraham sacrificing Issac, we already have some idea of Issacs faith. Issac would have a very clear idea of Gods plan and promise. However Rebekah was barren. Issacs first sign of faith is when prayed to God for his wife Rebekah (Gen 25:21). That was when Esau and Jacob was concieved.

That was when God revealed to Rebekah the future of the children. (Gen 25:23). Issac and Rebekah both have their own favourite child.

The incidents written by the Author of Hebrews is found in (Gen 27) Where Rebekah convinced Jacob to take away the blessings of Esau. Although in Issacs heart, we all knew that Issac loved Esau more then Jacob (Gen 25:27-28).  But I am very sure that Rebekah must have told Issac regardings God’s talking to her in (Gen 25:23).

Issac wanted to bless Esau, and instructed him to hunt for game. At that time, Jacob came in disguised as Esau. As Issac is hard of seeing, he can only identify his sons through their voice, smell and feel (Gen 27:17-29). Issac had his doubts whether the child is indeed Esau because of his voice, but he just tested to his best ability (By feel and smell) and proceed to bless the child (Believing that God will allow the right child to be blessed regardless)

When I was a kid, I always wonder whether did Issac did this knowingly or unknowingly. Why is it that Issac did not know that hairy skin, clothing can all be added while the voice can never be changed. But after reading what the author of Hebrews said, perheps he does it knowingly, understanding Gods will that the older will serve the younger. Although he wanted to bless Esau, but he still proceed holding the belief that Gods will come to pass by itself. Therefore the conclusion that Issac blessed his sons by faith.

Jacob
To most of my friends who reads the life of Jacob, we would all realised Jacob spent many parts of his life grabbing for worldly processions, and God is never a focus of his life until he met Brother Esau. that was when God wrestled with him and name him Israel and he erected his first altar called El Elohe Israel (Gen 33:20). All along, Jacob only address God as Lord (and not his God) (CF: Gen 28:16-17, Gen 31:42) He said he would only view God as his God if he return to Bethel safely (Gen 28:20-22). So onwards in his life, he was cheated by Laban, but God protected him. 

We see a dramatic change in Jacob’s life, on how he viewed his lifetime (Gen 47:7-9) , and how he acknowledges God protected him all his life (Gen 48:15-16)

Like most of us, he was busy chasing and grabbing after many prizes that we all hold dear to, but the Author of Hebrew only commended on one thing that he has grabbed correctly, which is God. He grab hold of the last opportunity to worship God as well as to bless his descendants. (Gen 47:31). Jacobs faith is best backed by the fact that he know Gods love for him, and his backed his faith by worshipping God till the last possible moment in his life.

Joseph
In Hebrews, the author talks about the instructions given concerning his bones. The faith of Joseph can be seen in his belief in what God told Abraham many years ago that his descendants will be slaves in Egypt for 400 years (Gen 15:13-15). And Joseph is aware of his part, that God has planned for him (To bring the family to Egypt and to save the lives of the chosen people (Gen 50:19-21).

As a prime minister of Egypt, I am very sure that Joseph can have his share of a grand funeral just like the one he gave Jacob (Gen 50:7-11). But strangely, he did not, and he gave a strange instruction, to ask the brethren to carry his bones out of Egypt only when God is ready to take them out of Egypt (Gen 50:24).

Joseph is indeed a man a wisdom, I remember once I heard in the sermon that this instruction is good, because Joesph must have understood
1. 400 years ia a long time, and you would never know what the people of God would become
2. After 4 generations have passed, perhaps the hope that God will take them out of Egypt will be
    forgotten.
3. Perhaps the people may have grown too comfortable and refuse to leave Egypt.

To ensure Gods will be done, Joseph has backed this faith with a instruction, to only carry his bones, after God has taken the people out of Eygpt. So whenever the Israelites sees his coffin, they will remember their oath and remember God. It serves as a good reminder to the people of the plan of God

We can see that the effect of this act of faith is active even in Moses time, as when the Exodus began, the first thing Moses did was to recover the bones of Joseph and bring it with them (Ex 13:19)

With these in mind, I would be talking about a few more characters to conclude the studies on the Heroes of Faith. The remaining characters are Moses parents and Moses

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I remember I first heard Brother Daniel singing this hymn in one of our informal hymnal sessions in church. I find the melody very interesting, and I realised it originated from India. As the church only put the term “Hindustan Melody” at the hymn.

So I decided to do a google on this hymn, then I realised this hymn had many other verses that were not found on my hymnbook. So I decided to place them together for everyone to read.

Just a bit of background on the hymn i found on the web

“This folk song originated among the Garo Indians, one of the hill tribes in India. The Garo tribe lives in an area that is now the state of Meghalaya, but was until 1970 the state of Assam. The northern part of Meghalaya borders on the Himalayan Mountain range. The earliest appearance of the hymn in the United States seems to have been in Choice Light and Life, a 1950 publication of the Free Methodist Church (Winona Lake, Ind.), compiled by LeRoy M. Lowell.” In some other places, I found they attributed the lyrics to this person called S. Sundar Singh .

The latest comments to this post reviewed that it was written by Nokseng
This hymn is written by either Ramke W. Momin or Obed W Momin, who were the first converts of the Garo tribe. And if you read their translation, you can imagine why they sang that.

Title: I have decided to follow Jesus (The verses not found in the church hymnbook are marked in Bold)

I have decided to follow Jesus;
I have decided to follow Jesus;
I have decided to follow Jesus;
No turning back, no turning back.

Though I may wonder, I still will follow;
Though I may wonder, I still will follow;
Though I may wonder, I still will follow;
No turning back, no turning back.

The world behind me, the cross before me;
The world behind me, the cross before me;
The world behind me, the cross before me;
No turning back, no turning back.

Though none go with me, still I will follow;
Though none go with me, still I will follow;
Though none go with me, still I will follow;
No turning back, no turning back.

My cross I’ll carry, Till I see Jesus;
My cross I’ll carry Till I see Jesus, :
My cross I’ll carry Till I see Jesus,
No turning back, No turning back.

Will you decide now to follow Jesus?
Will you decide now to follow Jesus?
Will you decide now to follow Jesus?
No turning back, no turning back.
Play the hymn here (Right Click and open a new window)

Thanks to the latest comment, I manage to get a glimpse of the Oringinal Hymn in the language of the Garo Indians

Jisu-ni ja’man anga ja’rikgen (After Jesus I will follow) –X3
Re’piljawa, re’piljawa (Will not go back, will not go back)

A’sak-ko wate, Chisol-ko de’e (Leaving the ways of the world, Carrying the cross) –X3
Re’piljawa, re’piljawa (Will not go back, will not go back)

Darang re’jaoba, anga ja’rikgen (Though none go, I will follow) –X3
Re’piljawa, re’piljawa (Will not go back, will not go back)

I feel alot of this hymn,  because lately I have been facing quite alot of setbacks in my plan. Just when I was thinking I have an idea where God wants me to go and what Gods wants me to do, that is when everything suddenly comes to an stop.  Almost every verses that I uncover offered loads of comfort from God to me.

The hymn started to remind me of the time I wanted to follow Jesus, about my encounters with death when I was a boy (Yes, I ever saw a man dying before me when I was 10). And how actually makes me wonder how death is like, and why is that man so afraid. So when I decided to follow Jesus, it is a good start for me. As I never seriously considered who I believed in before that

The second verse reminded me of the blog entry I wrote about the Heros of Faith,where Abraham started to move out of his home in Ur of the Chaldeans. At that time he has no idea where God is leading him to, yet he moved off, holding on to his faith. At that time though he wonder, yet he held on to his faith and follow God. (Heb 11:8-10,13-15)

The 3rd verse only reminded me to look at Jesus all the time, and look less into the world, as the world is slowly perishing away.  (1 Jn 2:15-17)

The 4th verse, tells us that in our life of faith, although not many people would move on this heavenly path. Especially when you see that many other people who are not holding the same faith as yours. In face of that, Do we still have the faith to follow Jesus all the way to the end? (Matt 7:13-14)

The 5th verse reminded me to hang on to this faith till meet Jesus in the very end.  (Matt 16:24-25)

And Finally, the last verse is a challenge to all the readers, will you then decided to follow Jesus? I have make my choice how about you?

Actually I am writing this blog entry to encourage myself to hold on to the faith I already have in Jesus, that although thing may not seems like how I would view it, I am sure God will lead us through at all times.

I have been finding a nice youtube for the hymn. I always wanted to put the original hymn sang in the language of the Garo Indians. By grace of God, I came across a skit made by a church regarding the hymn. In It feature the original hymn in Garo. I would love to share the skit here.

The Original Garo Hymn is featured from 5:30 onwards, after the Indian chief killed the son of the author. The other verses were played when his wife, and himself was killed.

You can read more about their work here

 

 

It has been a long time since I last blogged, I went on a long trip to Bali to meet alot of my church brothers and sisters in a fellowship. Bali is a very beautiful place, but I guess the real beauty lies in the fact that you are together with many fellow brothers and sisters in christ

Today, I decided to splash the song “We Can Be Lovers” Which is extracted from the Musical Moulin Rouge. In this particular story, there are a few characters here
1. Satine: A Beautiful Courtesan that is trying to gain a place as actress.
2. Christian: A Poor Poet a naive and idealistic writer who believed in the Bohemian ideals of freedom, beauty, truth, and love.

One of my favourite tagline of the movie is “The greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love, and be loved in return.”

Christian:
Love is a many splendid thing,
love lifts us up where we belong,
all you need is love
Satine:
please don’t start that again
Christian:
all you need is love..
Satine:
A girl has got to eat
Christian:
all you need is love
Satine:
or she’ll end up on the street
Christian:
all you need is love..
Satine:
Love is just a game..Christian:
I was made for loving you baby,
you were made for loving me
Satine:
The only way of loving me baby is to pay a lovely fee
Christian:
Just one night, just one night
Satine:
There’s no way, ’cause you can’t pay
Christian:
In the name of love
one night in the name of love
Satine:
You crazy fool, I won’t give in to you
Christian:
Don’t.. leave me this way
I can’t survive, without your sweet love
Oh baby, don’t leave me this way
Satine:
You think that people would have had enough of silly love songs
Christian:
I look around me and I see it isn’t so, oh no..
Satine:
Some people wanna fill the world of silly love songs
Christian:
Well what’s wrong with that,
I’d like to know
’cause here I go again..
Christian:
Love lift us up where we belong
where eagles fly, on a mountain high
Satine:
Love makes us act like we are fools
Throw our lives away, for one happy day
Christian:
We could be heros
Just for one day
Satine:
You, you will be mean
Christian:
No I won’t!
Satine:
And I.. I’ll drink all the time

Christian:
We should be lovers
Satine:
We can’t do that!
Christian:
We should be lovers, and that’s a fact

Satine:
No, nothing will keep us together
Christian:
We could still turn, just for one day
Both:
We could be heros, forever and ever
We could be heros, forever and ever
We could be heros..

Christian:
Just because I.. will always love you
Satine:
I cant help loving
Christian:
you..
Satine:
How wonderful life is
both:
now you’re in the world..

I found this very beautiful dub of the song sang by a pair of youtube users you  can view their channel if you like. Hopefully this would not get taken out again.