Tag: Recent

Help keep this website online for another 12 months

Greetings all in the Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

It is that time of the year again when we are reminded by WordPress to pay our annual subscription fee of US$300.00.

This website is now five (5) years old and in this short span of time its impact around the world has exceeded our expectations. It now has constant viewership in Israel, China, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Vietnam, Russia, Japan, United Kingdom, Bangladesh, Turkey, and India, just to mention a few countries. What has been most encouraging is that there are some believers living in places with no church to go to and they rely on sermons posted on the website for their spiritual food. In June this year we further introduced a Whatsapp Group where the Word is taught everyday. Again testimonies have come through from people who depend on this group for their fellowship.

Apart from the Sermons and Questions and Answers pages, the most referenced resource on the website in 2019 this far has been the “Notes on Daniel” series, an in-depth study of prophecy and history. To-date the website has recorded 45,262 views. To all my friends, brothers and sisters, who have supported us in the needs of this little ministry (you know yourself), all this wouldn’t have been possible without your commitment and love!

It is such positive and encouraging results that encourage us to press on and keep the website going. If you would like to help in contributing towards our annual subscription fee, send an email to voiceoftheword@live.com and you will be advised on how you can transact  the offering. We will post an update as soon as the target amount is achieved from contributions.

Yours in Christ

A C Phiri

Prayer Clinic

Prayer Clinic Sessions

Note: When you join the Prayer Clinic Whatsapp group, kindly go through the following sessions we have had in the past in order to understand the current activities of the group.

Introduction: The ‘old man’ must die!

Lesson 1: Take responsibility

Lesson 2: Understanding the Law of Attraction

Lesson 3: Influence of Fellowship

Lesson 4: Being aware of the Spiritual War

Lesson 5: Redeeming your Time

Lesson 6: The Holy Spirit living in You is your Victory

Lesson 7: DISCHARGE WEEK: Eating healthy

Lesson 8: DISCHARGE WEEK: Spiritual exercise

To be part of current prayer-mentorship activities join the Prayer Clinic Whatsapp Group. Send your request to voiceoftheword@live.com

Notes on Daniel: Rise of Constantine and demise of the Tetrarchy

Note: This is a continuation of the series “Notes on Daniel“. To see preceding notes go to the “Sermons” button above, click and locate “Notes on Daniel“.

In 303 AD (the year the Edict Against the Christians was issued), after visiting Rome, the health of Diocletian broke down. He could not continue ruling. On 1st May, 305 AD he stepped down from power. He retired to his large spacious home in Dalmatia. He encouraged his deputy to also step down to let their two caesares rise to the rank of augustus. The joint abdication thus led to Constantius and Galerius becoming augusti for  the western and eastern parts of the empire respectively. At this time it seemed obvious that Constantine, the son of Constantius who had been a right-hand man of Galerius and for which it had become certain that he was being groomed for rulership, would be appointed  caesar. However, the unexpected happened: Galerius considered  Constantine to be too ambitious and so bypassed him to appoint his nephew, Maximinus, as the new caesar in the eastern empire. Galerius went further to influence the outcome of who would become caesar in the west. He conspired to install a man called Severus instead of Maxentius, the son of Maximian the former augustus.

The maneuvers of Galerius were a dangerous plot which soon turned disastrous. The following year, in 306 AD, Constantius died and a power struggle ensued: the army proclaimed Constantine as their new augustus but Galerius promoted Caesar Severus of the West to the rank of augustus.

Down in the south Maxentius was declared emperor. This Maxentius also had North Africa under his control. It is important to note that these regions under the control of Maxentius supplied the Roman Empire with grain, a staple food, and thus the usurper controlled a  region which was crucial for the food security of the empire.

Emperor Severus marched with the army to go and fight Maxentius. This army had previously been led by Maximian, Maxentius’ father. Maxentius managed to win the hearts of the commanders and soldiers and turned them against emperor Severus who got arrested and was forced to abdicate.

In 308 AD Diocletian and Maximian called for an emergency meeting at Carnuntum, a Roman fortress on River Danube, during which it was decided that Licinius be appointed as the new augustus of the West and Constantine be recognized as his caesar. Galerius remained as augustus and Maximinus as his caesar in the east. Maxentius was deemed an illegitimate ruler.

The council at Carnuntum did not produce the desired results: Constantine and Maximinus could not accept Licinius as their senior. The following year, in 309 AD, both Constantine and Maximinus had to be recognized as augusti. The empire now had four augusti!

Power struggles and civil wars continued in the coming years. However, with time, Constantine was rising to take over the whole empire. In 312 AD Constantine invaded Italy. The first battle was fought at Turin and Constantine had a resounding win against Maxentius’ forces. Another victory followed at Verona. The crucial struggle would occur on the Milvian Bridge over River Tiber.

The battle of the Milvian Bridge

This was not an ordinary battle; it changed the course of world history! According to Eusebius of Caesarea, an eye-witness historian of the 4th century,  On 27th October, 312 AD, the day before the battle Constantine saw a vision of a cross in the sky and underneath it the words, “in hoc signo vinces” which means “in this sign, prevail”. Awaking from the vision Constantine needed no further explanation. The next morning he ordered the painting of the cross on the soldiers’ shields,   to march into the war as Christian soldiers.

Maxentius and his army sabotaged the Milvian bridge to hinder their foes from crossing over. In case of defeat, they made a temporal bridge of boats which they could use to run over and retreat to Rome. However, in the heat of the battle which ensued, Maxentius and his army fled over the temporary bridge but which collapsed causing many, including Maxentius, to drown! The body of Maxentius was retrieved from the river and beheaded.

River Tiber

After the battle of the Milvian Bridge Constantine committed himself to giving liberty to the Christians. He met with Emperor Licinius to confirm important political arrangements.

Artistic portrayal of the Battle of Milvian Bridge (Image created in 1666)

He believed that the Christian God had caused his victory. Britannica Encyclopedia notes:

Shortly after the defeat of Maxentius, Constantine met Licinius at Mediolanum (modern Milan) to confirm a number of political and dynastic arrangements. A product of this meeting has become known as the Edict of Milan, which extended toleration to the Christians and restored any personal and corporate property that had been confiscated during the persecution (Matthews and Nicol, 2019).

Constantine went further to do more than what was in the Edict of Milan. He became so devout to the cause of the Christian religion that he built Christians many structures and raised bishops to positions of power in society.

By 313 he had already donated to the bishop of Rome the imperial property of the Lateran, where a new cathedral, the Basilica Constantiniana (now San Giovanni in Laterano), soon rose. The church of St. Sebastian was also probably begun at this time, and it was in these early years of his reign that Constantine began issuing laws conveying upon the church and its clergy fiscal and legal privileges and immunities from civic burdens. As he said in a letter of 313 to the proconsul of Africa, the Christian clergy should not be distracted by secular offices from their religious duties “…for when they are free to render supreme service to the Divinity, it is evident that they confer great benefit upon the affairs of state” (ibid).

This was a big turn in history! By the year 313 AD the tetrarchy system was no more as there were only two rulers in the empire – Augustus Constantine in the West and Augustus Licinius in the East. In 324 AD a war broke out between the two halves of the empire in which Constantine emerged victorious. Constantine reunited the empire and established himself as the sole ruler.

Next: Rise of Papal Rome


Matthews, J.F.  and Nicol, D.M. ( 2019). Constantine I. Britannica Encylopedia [Online]. Available from https://www.britannica.com/biography/Constantine-I-Roman-emperor#ref22045 [Accessed May 6, 2019].

Does 1 Corinthians 7:14-15 mean babies of believers will be saved because their parents are holy, or that an unbelieving husband or wife is made holy by their believing spouse?

Question

“Shalom Sir, could you please explain 1 Corinthians 7:14-15 to me: Does it mean all babies of believers will be saved because their parents are holy?”


Reply

When 1 Corinthians 7:14-15 is read casually it surely seems to imply that an unbeliever who is married to a believer automatically becomes sanctified or holy in a salvational sense. Similarly, it also seems to imply that children born of such a union are also automatically holy. This idea is stretched further by some churches to justify the baptizing of infants. However, we know that salvation is never obtained by inheritance through a sexual or marital union. If a person is an adult, apart from God’s foreknowledge and predestination, he or she has to call on the Name of the Lord to be saved (Rom.10:13). So, what is the explanation?

It is important to note that the misunderstanding of 1 Corinthians 7:14-15 comes from looking at the words “sanctified” and “holy” in a wrong context. It is important to know that the two terms may mean different things in different passages of Scripture and so one has to understand the context of their use.

In Haggai 2:12-13 we find the term “holy” being used to describe meat as “holy flesh“. Just how holy was this meat: was it holy in a manner that a child of God has to be holy as God is (1 Pet.1:15-17)? Not so, it was holy in a ceremonial sense. It had been set apart according to the requirement of the Mosaic Law. This should bring us to analyzing another term closely related to holiness or sanctification, the term “righteousness”.

In Romans 3:10 (and also Psalm 14:3) we read that “There is none righteous, no, not one“. However, in Luke 1:5 there is a record of a couple – Zecharias and Elizabeth; “they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless“. Did Scripture contradict itself? Not so, it should be clear to see that there was that ceremonial or religious righteousness that required adherence to statutes or commandments. In Israel there were devout men who were determined to do what was right before God. However, sin was still in the blood and nature of mankind and it was only through the pure and sinless blood of Jesus Christ that we could receive the righteousness of God. Like apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans, “For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ). Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous” (Rom.5:17-19).

Note that the righteousness of a ceremony or of the Law was by works but that which is of Christ is called “the gift of righteousness” in Romans 5:17 because a true believer is dead to the flesh and lets the Holy Spirit live himself through them to manifest the holiness of God. That holiness comes by faith and not through a marital union.

Now, let us understand the subject Paul is dealing with in the sixth and seventh chapter of 1 Corinthians. In 1 Corinthians 6:16-20 he admonishes believers to never defile themselves in sexual union with a harlot. Note that acts of fornication and adultery involves committing a right act with a wrong person. However, when a man and woman are married, the bed or their union is ‘holy’ so to speak – “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge” (Heb.13:4). The word used for undefiled in Greek is amiantos and means to be pure and it is derived from miaino which is a verb meaning to ‘sully’, ‘taint’ or ‘contaminate’ in a ceremonial or moral way.

In the  seventh chapter Paul continues to teach believing couples on how to relate with each other. He tells a believing couple to never divorce and further warns  that if a marital relationship so much deteriorates that one spouse decides to leave, “let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband” (Rom.7:11). When Paul got done speaking to believing couples, he began to address those who were in mixed marriages (i.e. marriages in which one spouse was a believer but the other was an unbeliever). In 1 Corinthians 7:12-14 he explained that a believer who is married to an unbeliever should not consider divorcing his or her spouse on the excuse that their marriage is not acceptable before God. Whilst a believer who is single should only marry a fellow believer (cf. 1 Cor.7:39), there are those who came into the faith whilst already married. It is this category of people Paul was addressing. A believing spouse in such a marriage should know that their union (or ‘bed’) is not defiled; their marriage is ceremonially clean and acceptable, and through a godly and sanctified life of a believing spouse, the unbeliever and children may come to salvation. “For what knowest thou” Paul wrote, “whether thou shalt save thy husband ? Or how knowest thou, O man, whether thou shalt save thy wife” (Rom.7:16). Note that Paul wouldn’t have said these words if in verses 13 and 14 he meant spouses or children could automatically be saved through a relationship.

But, a question may be asked, “Where do babies go when they die?”

When a child dies prematurely someone may exclaim, “Oh, that child could have been doctor or a president!” That is true but there may very well be a possibility that the child  could have grown to be a murderer or a Hitler. No one knows the future of children. We can only dedicate our children to God and do our best to raise them in the right path. A time will come when their senses of judgement will be mature to make a decision. However, if they die prematurely I can only say God’s  Election will take course. If a child was ordained to Eternal Life by God’s foreknowledge he will surely be saved. “As many as were ordained to eternal life believed” the Scripture says (Act.13:48).

What is the “secret place” of the Most High in Psalm 91:1?

Psalm Chapter 91 presents the world as a battle ground where various evils occur. The passage mentions about the “terror by night“,”arrow that flieth by night“, “pestilence“, and “destruction“. Woe to him that walks about with blindness in such a terrible place. Apostle Paul described the situation as a war with evil spiritual forces of darkness-“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph.6:12).

In those ancient times cities or nations use to have fortresses or towers. These were places of safety. They  were characterized by thick walls and high raised portions on the wall wherein a watchman would stand to observe and alert people in case of any approaching danger.

In case of danger and you were outside the gates, you would run into the fortress for your protection.

As a Born Again child of God you also need to live in the fortress of God’s Word. This world is dark and our true protection lies in the revelation of God’s counsel to our lives. When one develops a closer walk with God he or she will live by the speaking of God in his life. When God reveals his counsel to you, that gives you joy and out of that joy comes strength. The revelation of God’s will gives you sight to see and walk not as a blind man but one who sees. That is not the situation for many people. Their lives are open for the devil to play around with. They are naked before forces of darkness. But a believer walks with God and is actually hidden in Christ – “For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God” (Col.3:3).

When you live by the counsel God reveals to you, what you do is  being done in the name of the Lord. As a believer “whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Col.3:17). That name is your protection and no amount of devils can defeat that. The name of the Lord is his presence and hedge around you; it is your ultimate tower of protection – “The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe” (Pro.18:10).

Now, having explained the above, let us read Psalm 91. Note that the word used in the Hebrew text for “secret place” is sether sithrah and refers to a shelter of protection. It is because of this that other versions like NIV states, “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty“. When you read the whole chapter you will realise that the shelter being referred to is actually a fortress or tower. The Jerusalem Bible puts it very well as follows:

If you live in the shelter of Elyon and make your home in the shadow of Shaddai, you can say to Yahweh, ‘My refuge, my fortress, my God in whom I trust!

And verses 14 and 15 continues to say:

I rescue all who cling to me, I protect whoever knows my name, I answer everyone who invokes me, I am with them when they are in trouble; I bring them safety and honour.

These verses clearly strike a chord with what we read in Proverbs 18:10, “The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe”.

Was the conception of Jesus the transformation of theophany into human flesh?

Question:

“I thought that the Word or Logos (the Theopany Body) became literally flesh and that was the flesh body of Jesus Christ. Does it mean that the Body dwelleth in a Human body which was Jesus’ body? Hope you will give me the difference between these two statements. God bless”

No, the Word did not transform itself into flesh as a foetus in the womb of Mary. Again no, at the baptism of Jesus it was not the Word Body entering another (human) body.

In the New Testament the Word Body vanished (i.e. ceased to exist) in order for the Word to now be expressed through a human body. That human body had to grow and feed. When Jesus was born as a baby he breastfed just like all babies. That was not a theophany breastfeeding; it was a normal human body being prepared. It had to grow in stature until such a time when the Spirit would indwell it so that it would now be the new mask of the invisible God (Col.1:15, Heb.10:5). When Jesus began his ministry the power and glory of the Word was manifest through his ministry. That was the Word becoming flesh! Like in the words of Paul, “God was manifest in the flesh” (1 Tim.3:16). On page 22 of his book on the subject of the Godhead Richard Gan puts it in this good simple way:

In the old, the LOGOS was expressed in and through a spirit body; in the new, the LOGOS was expressed in and through a human body…

And on page 24:

The newborn baby Jesus became a living soul and grew up to express the Life of God. From thence there was no longer any manifestation of the Spirit (Word) Body. Theophany ceased but the WORD was still with God.

In Hebrews 1:1-2 we read that “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son”. So, in that Old Testament era the Word would at one time take on a manner or form or body of what appeared like fire and at another time like a cloud. That doesn’t mean when it appeared like a cloud then the cloud was an incarnation of the previous manifestation of fire. The fire is ANOTHER FORM through which the LOGOS manifested or expressed itself. Hebrews 1:1-2 thus makes it clear that the body of Jesus was another (and actually the final) form through which the Word would manifest.

On his baptism we read that “the heavens were opened unto him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him” (Mat.3:16. That is what indwelt Jesus on his baptism, the Spirit of the Word, which is God (cf. Joh.1:1). When that Spirit was in Christ it manifested the Spoken Word of Life – “For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him” (Joh.3:34); “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life” (Joh.6:63).

May I conclude with these words: if the body of Jesus was the theophany-turned-human, the question arises: what will become of that ‘theophany-turned-human’ when Christ hands the kingdom back to the father so that God may be “all in all” (1 Cor.15:28)? Please note that in the Old Testament when God manifested in form of fire, the fire wasn’t God. When God manifested in elements of dust fashioned into a human body like he did to Abraham, the dust or body of flesh was not God! When God was done with his use of that body, the dust went back to the ground, the theophany ceased until another time that there was need for its manifestation.

Was Jesus God when he was a baby?

Questions asked during India visit

Question No.5

“Was Jesus God when he was a baby?”

In Acts 2:36 we read that, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ”. This one passage of Scripture shows us that there is God and there is Jesus the man and it is God who made Jesus both Lord and Christ. Secondly, the verse also tells us that Jesus was not Lord and Christ from eternity or from birth but that he was made Lord and Christ at a certain time of his life.

It is important to know that Jesus was a ‘mask’, so to speak, or a body,  through which the invisible God manifested. Like Paul stated in his letter to the Colossians, Jesus was “the image of the invisible God” (Col.1:15). However, he did not become that body or mask right from birth. The body had to be prepared until such a time when the glory of God would manifest through it : “Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith…a body hast thou prepared me” (Heb.10:5). Jesus grew in “stature” (Luk.2:52) and when he was about thirty years of age, he was ready to be endowed with that Spirit without measure (Joh.3:34).

At his baptism when the Spirit of God came into him God declared “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Mat.3:17). From that time mankind saw the God of heaven living among them through Jesus. It was for this reason he was named Emmanuel which means “God with us” (Mat.1:23), and Thomas called him, “My Lord and my God” (Joh.20:28) . That was the mystery of godliness – “God was manifest in the flesh” (1 Tim.3:16).

It is when that glory of God began to manifest in Jesus’ life that the Word was made flesh. The Word being made flesh does not mean the Word became blood cells, skin, or muscles as a fetus! Rather, it refers to the manifestation of the power of the Word through the flesh, that is, “God was manifest in the flesh” (1 Tim.3:16).  The Amplified Version phrases it this way – “He (God) was made visible in human flesh“, and in the NIV it states, “He appeared in a body“. Yes, God appeared in that body WHEN it was fully prepared for its work (Heb.10:5). John wrote that “the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, AND WE BEHELD HIS GLORY” (Joh.1:14). That refers to the power of the Word that began to manifest through the Lord and made people to behold the glory of God. That cannot be said to have occurred when Jesus was born as a baby or during his childhood years.

2019 India and Singapore Visit

The following is a report of my recent visit to India and Singapore. The first part of the report (for the India visit) has been written by Brother Hubert D’souza my host.

Report by Pastor Hubert D’souza

The 9th of April 2019 was a great day with lots of excitement in the hearts of the saints at Faith Assembly church in Mumbai. It brought joy to us as we saw Brother Andrew Phiri of Zambia arrive at the airport. The flight arrived almost 20 minutes before its scheduled time.

Pune

The first convention meeting was scheduled in Pune, a city that is about 180 kilometres from Mumbai. A two day meeting was organised on the 10th and 11th April 2019. The church at Pune is led by Pastor More together with Brothers Balerao and Sona Dethe of Ahmednagar. This convention was organised at the Christi Seva Ashram Swargate Pune, a beautiful place with cool greenery in the campus. We started off from Mumbai by car by 5:30 AM and reached Pune around 10:00 AM.

We had four sessions in two days. It was a true feast around the Word of God. The large number of people that gathered from far and wide confessed that it was a great time of spiritual blessing. The messages left us spell bound in understanding “the mystery of His will”. On both days it was a good time of music, melody and worship with God’s anointed Word.

Finally the end of the two days meeting winded with a benediction by Pastor Balerao of Ahmednagar. In returning to Mumbai we started off at about 9:00 pm after having dinner in a fine restaurant in Pune. We reached Mumbai safely around 1:30 am.

Welcoming brother Phiri in Pune with a bouquet of flowers

Note: I was particularly touched to see some believers who had traveled great distances to attend these meetings. There was Sister Valentine D’souza (a former Catholic nun) who despite being badly sick had traveled from Mangalore to Mumbai and then to Pune. Through these meetings I also noticed how far our books and website ministry has reached out to many people. A number of them expressed their testimony of how they have been blessed. Others have made efforts to print out and distribute various articles on the website. The efforts are so much appreciated.

End of meetings and all set to drive back to Mumbai. From L-R: Flossy Dsouza, Andrew Phiri, Bhalerao, and Hubert Dsouza

Mumbai

The 12th, 13th and 14th of April 2019 were the scheduled dates for the Mumbai meetings, three consecutive evening services suited for the busy Mumbai crowd. The venue was Faith Assembly Church. All the services were packed and every one rejoiced in the meetings. The last service was a Sunday service and was a fully packed service.

The story of ‘Lot standing at the gate’ was an eye opener to all of us. There were saints gathered from Mangalore, Bangalore, Pune and Ahmednagar to hear the message of the hour.

It was indeed a precious moment around the Word of God.

Delhi

On the 15th of April 2019 we started our journey to the capital of our country (Delhi). Brother Phiri and myself started the journey by the Rajdhani Express to New Delhi. After 16 hours of travel we reached New Delhi and were received  by Brother Sanjeev Emmanuel, the Pastor of a local church in Delhi.

With Bro. Sanjeev Emmanuel

The 16th and 17th of April 2019 were the two lovely days of fellowship. Seekers of Truth and believers gathered at the pastor’s residence for fellowship. The saints were blessed and enriched by the Word of God. Brother Phiri expounded on the message ‘The Speaking of God’ and everyone was delighted in the truth of the scriptures.

It all came to an end with a typical Biryani dinner (Indian Style).

Utter Pradesh

The next day,18th of April 2019, we started off to Uttar Pradesh. By afternoon we reached Bhaisya. We were received by the local pastor, Brother Gulzar Masih, and the members of the church. Pastor Gulzar Masih’s house was under renovation and he did so much work to expedite everything just in order to make our stay comfortable. It was a warm climate yet some unexpected rains had made the climate cool and windy.

This place is a village with lots of greenery and fields in the background. The saints were very hospitable and kind. Brother Phiri was so much loved and taken care of. He was also made to indulge in a variety of Indian cuisine and sweets. The two days of meetings in Bhaisya were a great delight and a time of feasting around the Word of God. The believers were found rejoicing in every aspect of the revelation expounded. Brother Phiri spoke on a message of “Stiring up the Faith in You”.  It was beautifully expounded with illustrations.

The only problem brother Phiri had was how to communicate with the saints. Hindi is the only language spoken and understood in this place and so interpretation was the only way of relating with people. The two days were amazing and every bit of it became a cherished memory.

In one service in Bhaisya, my message took a turn. I decided to speak on the issue of Law and Grace. At the end of the service I understood why that happened. An Adventist couple came forward to testify of their desire to be in the faith. They asked for a place where they could start fellowshiping where the precious truth they heard was being taught. The couple requested that I pray for them and I gladly did that. I pray that the Lord may help them grow and become fruitful in the faith.

The next day, 20th April, we started off to Sata Keda, another village which is about 30 kilometers from Bhaisya.  We all headed to a river where water baptisms were arranged. It was a quiet place and peaceful environment. About 16 persons got baptized in the river and put on Christ. They were men, women, youngsters and even old grannies.

This was a very touching moment as these people gave their lives to Christ. After this baptism service we all headed to the prayer service where a lot of ministers and saints gathered to hear the word of God.

Brother Andrew Phiri spoke on living a consecrated life in waiting on the promise of the coming of the Lord. The saints rejoiced and received the Word gladly in their hearts.

This gathering ended with a sumptuous meal prepared by the church elders. After talking and sharing for a while we then started to Rampur the next destination.

We went to the home of Pastor Nazaad Masih, a renown pastor in the area who has labored for Christ for over 40 years, preaching the gospel and proclaiming the Message of the Hour. A truly humble servant of the Lord.

Pastor Nazaad Masih

After a cup of tea and snacks we gathered at the home of one of the church elders – Brother James –  for an evening service. This area is a small town in Rampur and is a historical place in the state of Utter Pradesh. Brother James is the church elder and worship leader of the Rampur church. He is a loving and caring brother in the Faith. It was a small gathering of about 25 to 30 people and Brother Phiri encouraged them on how to walk the Christian walk and be grounded in the present truth. After the service we had a typical north Indian meal for dinner. They had been informed to use less spice in the food for our visitor but yet brother Andrew Phiri appreciated the Indian delicacies. We were made to stay for the night in one of the brother’s home where we had a causal discussion for a couple of hours and later we went to bed.

The next day being a Sunday, on 21st April, we started off to a village where the church is located. This Kashipur church was built by Pastor Nazaad Masih. We were welcomed with great enthusiasm. This place was a real village with fields and greenery all around. Beautiful small village houses, it was a great pleasure to visit these people and meet them in their homes. The church service started at about 10:30 am and the worship service was  characterized by good Hindi classical songs, and the saints worshiped God from all their hearts. We were welcomed to the stage and Brother Phiri ministered from the Word of God. The church was packed to capacity with believing saints and ministers from various churches.

The message spoken by Bro. Phiri  was a great blessing to all the saints in Rampur.

After ministering in this church one thing that I kept being told by people was, “My questions have been answered!” I spent time to teach on the nature of the Serpent in the Garden of Eden. After the services a group of zealous brothers, most of them youthful, took me out to a quite place under a tree where they expressed so much joy of what they had learned. It was a good time of fellowship and asking questions. I pray that God may establish His children in India and around the world in the revealed truth of Scripture.

There was lunch prepared by the church members for all the people gathered. The people gathered from far and wide and assembled for this morning and evening services. The evening service started at about 4:30 pm and went up till 7:00 pm. We gave a token of our love and appreciation to Pastor Nazaad Masih for his faithful service unto the Lord for over 40 years.  This gesture was highly appreciated. That evening we had the meals at one of the members in the vicinity, who belongs to the church.

Truly every bit of time we spent in Kashipur (Rampur) was a memorable one. The next morning we boarded a train back to Delhi and then to Mumbai. That morning we visited another Pastor from Rampur Pastor Malan Masih. We had a short visit to his place where we had a short prayer and then we went to the railway station to board the train to Delhi. At Delhi we were received by bro Sanjeev Emmanuel to his home and then the next day we took a train back to Mumbai and were back home after a 15 day journey in the mission. Many thanks to Bro. Andrew Phiri for his precious time with the saints in India.

Pastor Hubert D’souza


Singapore

From Mumbai I traveled to Singapore through Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. I arrived in Singapore on 26th April feeling so weary and tired. I was received by Brothers Richard Gan and Jonan Gan. At Changi airport I was astounded at the beauty of the airport. It has been rated the best for the seventh time in a row and it sure deserves the rating. I was especially stunned by an artificial waterfall structure.

With Brother Richard Gan at Jewel Changi Airport

However, what was more important for me in this prosperous city-state was spending some time of prayer and fellowship with Brother Richard Gan and saints at the Prophetic Revelation fellowship on a Sunday before proceeding home to Lusaka. This ministry holds a special place in the hearts of many people around the world and I was thankful to have had another time of visiting for the third time now.

I came to know of Brother Gan’s ministry in 1999. In that year a Pentecostal reverend had warned me not to read his white ‘Prophetic Revelation’ books, telling me that they were just not right. The reverend however recommended that Spoken Word books by Brother Branham were fine to read. One day I was with a friend in the reverend’s home. He reached out to pick a Spoken Word book, and as he also wanted to pick a ‘white’ book on the shelf, I echoed the warning to him, “Don’t take those white ones, they are not good!” Here I was, preventing a person from reading that which I had never read nor understood myself! Well, from the same bookshelf I decided to pick a golden-colored book. It had a strange title which I didn’t understand – “THE FINALE”. Although strange, the book was alright for me as long as it wasn’t in white color!

That evening I began to read the book and everything was too new. Then came an experience that frightened me. I went into a trance and saw a man walking barefoot in a dark corridor of a house. In his hand was a torch. He screamed saying, “Behold, the Bridegroom cometh!” I  woke up from the experience and went on my knees praying and repenting. Later I came to realize that the author of the book which led me to the truth was the same one for the white ones. What could it be but a real illustration that we should not  judge a book by its cover.

Bookshelf  at Prophetic Revelation prayer hall

We had two services in Singapore during which I preached on a message titled The Speaking of God. 

Notice board

The video messages are available both on our YouTube channel (For Your Edification) and the Prophetic Revelation website.

Bro. Jonan Gan leading praise and worship during the church service

I flew back home on 30th April, arriving on 1st May. My first week back home I felt sick from the stress of the journey but later recovered. Our prayers are now towards Malawi, where I will be travelling next for a series of meetings. May the Lord bless all who love His appearing. Amen.