May 2014


A psalm of remembrance

“We have known and believed the love that God hath to us.” 1 John 4:16

Suggested Further Reading: Habakkuk 3:16-19

“Hast thou considered my servant Job?” “Ah,” says Satan, “he serves thee now, but thou hast set a hedge about him and blessed him, let me but touch him.” Now he has come down to you, and he has afflicted you in your estate, afflicted you in your family, and at last he has afflicted you in your body. Shall Satan be the conqueror? Shall grace give way? O my dear brother, stand up now and say once more, once for all, “I tell thee, Satan, the grace of God is more than a match for thee; he is with me, and in all this I will not utter one word against the Lord my God. He doeth all things well—well, even now, and I do rejoice in him.” The Lord is always pleased with his children when they can stand up for him when circumstances seem to belie him. Here come the witnesses into court. The devil says, “Soul, God has forgotten thee, I will bring in my witness.” First he summons your debts—a long bill of losses. “There,” says he “would God suffer you to fall thus, if he loved you?” Then he brings in your children—either their death, or their disobedience, or something worse, and says, “Would the Lord suffer these things to come upon you, if he loved you?” At last he brings in your poor tottering body, and all your doubts and fears, and the hidings of Jehovah’s face. “Ah,” says the devil, “do you believe that God loves you now?” Oh, it is noble, if you are able to stand forth and say to all these witnesses, “I hear what you have to say, let God be true, and every man and everything be a liar. I believe none of you. You all say, God does not love me; but he does, and if the witnesses against his love were multiplied a hundredfold, yet still would I say, “I know whom I have believed.”

For meditation: The question is bound to be asked sooner or later (Psalm 42:3,10). The apostle Paul gives the greatest answer (Romans 8:35-39).

Sermon no. 253 22 May (1859)

A sense of pardoned sin

“Thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.” Isaiah 38:17

Suggested Further Reading: Psalm 32

We are saved by faith, and not by feeling. “We walk by faith and not by sight.” Yet there is as much connection between faith and hallowed feeling, as there is between the root and the flower. Faith is permanent, just as the root is ever in the ground; feeling is casual, and has its seasons. Just as the bulb does not always shoot up the green stem; far less is it always crowned with the many, many-coloured flower. Faith is the tree, the essential tree; our feelings are like the appearance of that tree during the different seasons of the year. Sometimes our soul is full of bloom and blossom, and the bees hum pleasantly, and gather honey within our hearts. It is then that our feelings bear witness to the life of our faith, just as the buds of spring bear witness to the life of the tree. Presently, our feelings gather still greater vigour, and we come to the summer of our delights. Again, perhaps, we begin to wither into the dry and yellow leaf of autumn; nay, sometimes the winter of our despondency and despair will strip away every leaf from the tree, and our poor faith stands like a blasted stem without a sign of greenness. And yet, my brethren, so long as the tree of faith is there we are saved. Whether faith blossom or not, whether it bring forth joyous fruit in our experience or not, so long as it be there in all its permanence we are saved. Yet we should have the gravest reason to distrust the life of our faith, if it did not sometimes blossom with joy, and often bring forth fruit unto holiness.

For meditation: True joy cannot exist without saving faith (1 Peter 1:8-9), but sometimes our salvation needs to have its joy restored (Psalm 51:12).

Sermon no. 316 21 May (Preached 20 May 1860)

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Ndoa na jamii

John huamka mapema kila siku ya ibada. Yeye hupeleka mkewe na watoto kutumia gari lake hadi kanisani. Yeye huwaeleza kwamba hataweza kuhudhuria ibada kwa kuwa anaenda kutafuta pesa na anawaahidi kuwapeleka matembezi wakitoka kanisa.  Jumatatu asubuhi, Yohana huwapeleka watoto wake shuleni  kule mjini na kupeleka mke wake kazini kule viwandani lakini huwa hawana mazungumzo yeyote kwenye gari.  Anapofika ofisini anajulishwa na mfanyikazi mwenzake wa kike kuwa kuna mkutano wa kiofisi wanapaswa kuhudhuria. Wakiwa kwenye gari wakienda kwa huo mkutano yeye na huyu mwanamke wanakuwa na mazungumzo matamu sana, na kwa unaweza fahamu kuwa hapa kwamba hawa wawili wako na mengi ya kuzungumzia. Sio la ajabu mtu mmoja alisema kwamba, “Ukiona mwanamume na mwanamuke wako kwa mazungumzo ya furaha kwenye gari wakiendesha kuna uwezekano kwamba hao wawili sio mke na mumewe”.

Sehemu ya A

Somo

Waefesso 5:22-25

Maswali ya kujadili

1. Kwa maneno yako mwenyewe unaelewa aje neon hili “Kunyenyekea kwa mumeo”  kama  ilivyo tumika kwenye kifungu hiki.

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2. Je kuna waume ambao hutumiaa vibaya kunyenyekea kwa mkewe? Kama ndio eleza.

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3. Je waume wameamriwa kufanya nini?

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4. Eleza wazi wazi ni mambo (matatizo) yapi unapambana nayo katika ndoa yako na uliza kikundi wakuombee.

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Soma Waebrania 13:4

a) Je unaelewa vipi huu mstari wa Biblia?

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b) Je ni kitu gani hufanyika kwa wale watu wanakosa kuheshimu ndoa kwa uzinzi au uasherati ?

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c) Je, kuna hatari gani kwa wale hujihusisha katika uasherati? Jadili

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5. Soma 1Petero 3:1-2

a)Je, kutokana na kifungu hiki ni mambo gani yapaswa kutendwa na wamawake waumini ambao waume wao sio waumini ili waweze kumwamini Kristo?

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Soma 1Petero 3:7

b) Je, waume au wake waumini wanapaswa kuwatenda wenzao mambo yapi?

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Sehemu ya B

Soma Mithali 22:6

Imekuwa ni jambo la kawaida kusikia migomo katika shule za msingi, za upili hata vyuo vikuu vya masomo. Kutokana na ukosefu wa wakati kwa wazazi wengi wa nyakati hizi ambapo waume na wake wao hujihusisha sana katika kazi waliko ajiliwa , kuwapa nidhamu imewachiwa walimu huku wazazi wakiipuuza ilehali hii sio wajibu wa kuwachiwa mtu mwingine awaye yote.

6. a) Taja njia tekelezi ambayo watoto wanastahili kufunzwa kulingana na mienendo ya Biblia.

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b) Yaonekana kana kwamba watoto wengi ambao tabia zao sio nzuri mara nyingi hutoka katika jamii za wazazi waumini? Je, ni kwel au sio kweli? Jadili

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Soma Waefeso 6:1-3

7. a) Watoto wanaamriwa kufanya nini na kwa nini?

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b) Eleza matokeo ya watoto wasiotii wazazi wao.

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Soma 1Samueli 1:11

1. Je, ni mambo gani wakristo hutazamia kuona katika watoto wao>

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2. Je, wewe kama mkristo unafanya nini ili kuona watoto wanafikia yale mmetaja japo juu (1)?

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Kuna mbao maarufu ambayo huning’inia kwenye kuta za nyumba nyingi isomayo kwa kiingereza, “Kristo ndiye kichwa wa nyumba hii, mgeni asiye onekana tunapokula,msikilizaji aliyenyamaza kwa mazungumzo yote.” Ujumbe huu humwuonyesha Yesu kam a mtu ambaye yuko pale bila ruhusa ya kufanya lolote au kuingilia kati. Ukweli ni kwamba katia nyumba nyingi hawamtabui Kristo hata kidogo. Mume na mke hujihusisha katika vita mbele ya watoto wao. Wakati mwingine wao hukaa hata wiki kadhaa bila kuzungumziana  wala wakati wa kuomba na kusoma neon la Mumgu na watoto wao. Wakati mwingine mke akiwa hayuko nyumbani mume humbadilisha na mfanyikazi wa kike wa nyumbani au huendea mke wa jirani yake ambyo ni kinyume na neon la Mungu.  Kristo hawezi kuwa kichwa wa nyumba au jamii kama hii. Mungu anaamuru jamii kama hiii kutubu na kubdilishwa.

Utendaji

a) Je Yesu ndiye wa nyumbani anamoishi? Eleza

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b) Kama umeoa/umeolewa taja mabo unayofanya kuimarisha upendo wako na mwenzio

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c) Kama wewe ni mzazi je, unamheshimu Kristo vipi katika jami yako? Taja jia zile unatumia kuwalea watoto wako kwa maisha ya kumpendeza mungu.

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d) Ni kitu gani hufanyika kwa jamii inayoishi pamoja?

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