Wishing all my readers and dearest ones a very, very happy and blessed Christmas. This is the time of year we all look forward to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus in this world. On 25th of December, for thousands of years, the world has been celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
Many Christians celebrate this day by eating and drinking. Many people become debtors, many accidents take place and many people die or are maimed due to such drunken accidents on this day.
The Holy Scriptures warn us about this in Romans 14:17 “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” The birth of Christ is really, really true. People who expected the Messiah for 4000 years were proved right when He came in the flesh into this world. So rejoice and celebrate that the Messiah came for your sakes.
Long before Christ came into this world, His birth, His qualities and how He would be a blessing for us was prophesied, and many names were given to Him. His names in Isaiah 9:6 “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”
Among all the promises given in the Bible: He is the Messiah, He is Christ, He is Immanuel, the best promise for all of us is: “I will be with you, I will not leave you nor forsake you. I am with you always even till the end of the age”
God was with Abraham and multiplied his descendants as the stars in the heaven.Genesis 22:16-18 “And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son: That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.”
God was with Isaac when he sowed seed and He gave him a hundred times harvest yield. Genesis 26:12 “Then Isaac sowed in that land, and received in the same year an hundredfold: and the LORD blessed him.”
God was with Jacob and promised him to bring him back to the land. Genesis 28:15 “And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.”
Joseph suffered a lot in his young age, but God was with him and lifted him from glory to glory.
The Lord was with David: David says, “I have set the Lord always before me, because He is at my right hand. I shall not be moved. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me, Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”
The Lord was with Job, hence he blessed him double fold than before earlier. Job 42:10 “And the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.”
The presence of Immanuel be with you not only during Christmas, but surround you all through the coming year. When you pass through the waters, He will be with you, when you pass through the rivers they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you. For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but His kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall this covenant of peace be removed. Fear not for He is with you, be not dismayed for He is your God, He will strengthen you; yes, He will help you, He will uphold you with His righteous right hand.
Those who have kept Immanuel as their God are blessed people. Psalms 144:15 “Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the LORD.” All your sorrows will turn to joy. So rejoice in the Lord always. Philippians 4:4 “Rejoice in the Lord always and again I say, Rejoice.”
The joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10 “Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”
Even if the people war against you, since Immanuel is with you, fear no evil. Jeremiah 15:20 “And I will make thee unto this people a fenced brasen wall: and they shall fight against thee, but they shall not prevail against thee: for I am with thee to save thee and to deliver thee, saith the LORD.”
He is not far from you, He is within you. He will definitely give you victory upon victory. The real meaning of Christmas is knowing Immanuel, receiving Him and rejoicing in Him.
Wishing you all a Happy Christmas and a blessed New Year and may God bless you till we meet again in the New Year.
Pastor Saroja M.
Praise the Lord. I am sister Kalpana from Bulandshatir in Uttar Pradesh. I was suffering from severe headache for many months. No medicnes would work for me. Then I was watching the Rose of Sharon TV program and I called the prayer request number shown on the TV screen. The prayer warrior prayed for me and I praise and thank God that I am now totally healed from my headache. I now have absolutely no headache. Thank you for your prayers.
Sis.Kalpana, Bulandshatir, Uttar Pradesh
My son Irwin had fever for more than three weeks. The fever was not constant, and only at morning and at night the fever would rise to around 102° Celsius. We took him to the doctor and he suggested getting the blood test done. In the blood report some sort of infection was detected with symptoms of typhoid. To know the type of infection in the body, the doctor suggested we get a C.T scan and sonography done, for which he would have to go through anaesthesia. We immediately called up Pastor Saroja and told her the whole matter. After all the tests were done, the reports came normal and only routine medicines were given for him. I give all glory to Lord Jesus for saving my son from any sort of serious infections. I also thank Pastor Saroja for always remembering my family in her prayers.
Sis. Esther Patel, Goregaon
Praise the Lord. I am testifying on behalf of my daughter Disha who is 3 years old. She had chronic problem of passing stools. One day I was watching the Rose of Sharon TV program and called their prayer tower. The prayer warrior prayed for my daughter and she was well within 2 days. The doctors said she had to be operated for a cure but I called the prayer tower again and the prayer warrior asked me to give her phone to my daughter Disha and they prayed for her. I praise God she is totally well now and she needs no operation. I thank the good Lord for this miracle.
Bro. Malani Harrah, Jalna, Maharashtra
Sis. Manisha Saldana, Andheri East.
Praise the Lord. I had not checked my diabetic level for a long time. Recently when I tested my post meal blood sugar, I was very much worried as my sugar level was very high at 435. I informed Pastor Saroja about the same and Pastor consoled me and gave me some advice and also assured me of her prayers. I followed her advice and 3 weeks later once again when I checked my blood sugar it had come down to 190. This was very miraculous. Thank you Jesus for lowering my sugar level and I also thank Pastor Saroja for her precious advice and for praying ceaselessly for me. Thank you Jesus.
Sis Savita Roberts, Kalina
Praise the Lord. For 4 years I was at the same designation at work. Recently an opening came for a Team Leader in my office but it was a different process. I called up Pastor Saroja and asked whether I could apply for the same. Pastor prayed for me and through the Lord’s wisdom told me to go ahead for the same. There were a total of 14 applicants and out of all of them only I was selected for the position. This is only the Lord’s grace on me that I could become a Team Leader. I thank Pastor Saroja who prayed and guided me accordingly. Thank you Jesus for your grace on me.
Bro. Hardik Patel, Goregaon
Praise the Lord. I would like to thank my Lord Jesus for the daily wonderful miracles He has done for me in the past year. Every day I see His grace on me- let it be my professional or personal life. At my work I can see His grace so much on me. Thank you Jesus for all the wonderful blessings you have blessed me with though am not worthy. Thank you Pastor Saroja for continuously praying for me.Love you Jesus.
Sis Padma Jaykanth, Kalina
The decorating committee had just finished their beautification of the Sanctuary for the Christmas Season. All the greenery and bells and lovely bows were in place and on the altar was placed the creche with Mary and Joseph, all the animals, and in the manger lay the Baby Jesus. Satisfied with their work, the members of the Committee closed the Sanctuary door and left for home. The Church remained beautiful and inspirational for the season and for Christmas Day.
The day after Christmas, the Pastor arrived at the Church rather late, having visited those in the hospital before going to his church. He walked into the Sanctuary, and again looked at all the beautiful work the people had done, but noticed that the Baby Jesus was not lying in the manger. He couldn’t imagine what the trouble was; he knew Jesus had been placed in the manger and had been there Christmas Day. He looked everywhere, wondering what could have happened, but could not find Him. He raised his head and gazed out the window, and there, in the church courtyard, was little Bobby. Bobby was pulling a shiny, new, red wagon – and inside the wagon, there He was – the Baby Jesus!
Pastor went out and spoke to Bobby. “I noticed Baby Jesus was missing from the manger, Bobby,” commented the Pastor, “and now I see that you have him in your wagon. Would you like to explain to me why you removed him from the Church?” “Well, Pastor,” Bobby said, “before Christmas I prayed to the Lord for a shiny, new, red wagon, and I promised Him that He saw fit to get me one, I would give Him a ride. I had to keep my promise because He keeps His promises to me. I will put Him back in His manger now; He has had a long ride.”
Luke 18:17 Jesus said, “Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.” …
Romans 11:24 “For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert grafted contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree?“
When Lord Jesus lived on the face of this earth, He performed many miracles. One of the miracles was the healing of the blind man, where Jesus took him out of the village, healed his blindness and as ked him to look up and tell what he could see. What did the newly healed blind man see? Mark 8:23-24 “And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought. And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking.” He saw men walking as tall trees. In the Holy Scriptures, God compares the righteous men to the Olive and Cedar trees. The unrighteous men are compared to wild olive trees, which are not fruitful. But, our Lord Jesus Christ has come into this world to make the wild and unfruitful tree, fruitful. Even today many farmers graft fruitful trees to the unfruitful trees. During the reign of Apostle Paul, it was time to graft such ‘wild and unfruitful trees to fruitful trees’. Romans 11:17 “And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;“ This is what God the Father did, to reconcile the family of Abraham with the gentiles of the world. Jesus Christ was sent into this world so that the wild and unfruitful people would be grafted into Him and thus receive Him into their lives and become fruitful. We were all at one time sons and daughters of evil, we did not belong to Abraham’s family, but since Jesus Christ’s death on the Cross, by His blood we are all reconciled to Him and have become Abraham’s family. Here we see the marvellous works of our God, how He made our lives fruitful (just as He grafted the wild Olive tree into the fruitful Olive, thereby making our lives fruitful).
Apostle Paul says in Ephesians 2:12-13 “That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” After grafting, our life has become even more fruitful than the original fruitful Olive tree. As the wild Olive tree becomes stronger and more fruitful and its fruit gets even more sweeter and prosperous than the original fruitful Olive tree; similarly when we compare our lives now to when we came from the gentiles, Jesus having grafted our lives with Him, we see that our lives have become more blessed than the lives of the Jews who are God’s chosen people. This is the truth, for even today the Jews do not believe that Jesus Christ has already come into this earth and given His life for His people. Because of their disbelief, their life is still sorrowful and painful, and they have no peace in their lives, for even today they stand at the Wailing Wall and cry out for the Messiah to come and rescue them. For them Jesus Christ was only a carpenter’s son. But our belief is different, for we believe that Lord Jesus has already come into this world for us and has grafted us with Him i.e. we the wild olive unfruitful tree with Jesus Christ, the fruitful Olive tree; and has made our lives fruitful by sacrificing His life on the Cross for our sakes. He has made us as Abraham’s family and made us fruitful in life.
It is important for us to grow in the image of Jesus Christ, because God the Father has grafted us with His son Jesus Christ. Psalms 148:9–14 “Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars: Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl: Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth: Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children: Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven. He also exalteth the horn of his people, the praise of all his saints; even of the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the LORD.” Just continue to glorify, thank and praise God and grow in the image of Jesus Christ, this is the advice given to all, whether young, youthful, grown up or old. God asks all the fruitful trees to continue to praise and worship Lord Jesus. We must never forget the sacrifice of Jesus Christ in our lives.
God was in the midst of the Israelites during their travel through the wilderness, so that they may remain grafted with God. He spoke to Moses in Exodus 25:10 “And they shall make an ark of shittim wood: two cubits and a half shall be the length thereof, and a cubit and a half the breadth thereof, and a cubit and a half the height thereof.” He told them to be entwined with the Acacia tree. We see that God has given us one type of tree to be entwined with and another type of tree to use for God’s work. Exodus 25:13 “And thou shalt make staves of shittim wood, and overlay them with gold.” Exodus 26:15 “And thou shalt make boards for the tabernacle of shittim wood standing up.” God had asked the Israelites to bring offerings to Him from the Acacia tree itself. God further told them that He likes a cheerful and joyful giver; those who found this tree and cut it with great difficulty and brought Him the offering, He would bless them abundantly. Exodus 25:1-5 “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, that they bring me an offering: of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart ye shall take my offering. And this is the offering which ye shall take of them; gold, and silver, and brass, And blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen, and goats’ hair, And rams’ skins dyed red, and badgers’ skins, and shittim wood,” God told Moses that He wanted the Acacia tree only as an offering for Him from the Israelites. While all the other things were available within their encampment itself, the Acacia tree was found on the outskirts. Thus, whoever would take the trouble to find this tree, cut it and bring it as an offering to God, would be blessed abundantly. The Acacia tree was not easily available to the people since it was rare, and it was only after a great search that people could find this tree. As this Acacia tree offering could be brought to God only after a lot of effort and hard work, this offering would receive blessings. Many people when they work hard, do not like to part with their hard earned money; they grumble and murmur and are in two minds whether to part with their hard earned money or not. The word says that the Lord loves a joyful and cheerful giver. Thus when we are a joyful giver, you will always be like the Acacia tree entwined with the Lord. Our God does not measure His blessings – they are countless and beyond measure.
Joel 3:18 “And it shall come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drop down new wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and all the rivers of Judah shall flow with waters, and a fountain shall come forth of the house of the LORD, and shall water the valley of Shittim.” From where does God send His blessings upon us? From His Holy mountain, honey and milk will flow into all the rivers of Judea. These are the blessings of God, when we give back to Him joyfully. Whether it is our offering, time, faith, or heart, it must always be given joyfully. Isaiah 55:12-13 “For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree: and it shall be to the LORD for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.” When the Israelites (who did not like Moses and Aaron) started grumbling against God’s chosen servants, God sent a test for the people to see. Numbers 17:1-5 “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and take of every one of them a rod according to the house of their fathers, of all their princes according to the house of their fathers twelve rods: write thou every man’s name upon his rod. And thou shalt write Aaron’s name upon the rod of Levi: for one rod shall be for the head of the house of their fathers. And thou shalt lay them up in the tabernacle of the congregation before the testimony, where I will meet with you. And it shall come to pass, that the man’s rod, whom I shall choose, shall blossom: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, whereby they murmur against you.” Moses did as God spoke to him. Numbers 17:7-8 “And Moses laid up the rods before the LORD in the tabernacle of witness. And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.” This is the wonderful miracle that God performs when we remain entwined with Him. Here we see that from the lifeless and dried up rod of the house of Aaron, God blossomed flowers and fruits on it. Likewise, God can bless our sorrowful and unfruitful lives and blossom it once again. Hence our complete faith must be upon Him alone and we must never grumble and murmur against Him as the Israelites did. Moses and Aaron always obeyed God, hence God performed this miracle on their dried up rod before the Israelites. We must remember that there is no work that is impossible for God. From the dried up rod, flowers and fruits blossomed.
When we believe such a marvellous God, lets read Isaiah 40:29 “He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.” God strengths the weak and strengthens the tired. God honours His people who are always in His presence and entwined with Him. 1 Chronicles 16:27-34 “Glory and honour are in his presence; strength and gladness are in his place. Give unto the LORD, ye kindreds of the people, give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. Fear before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved. Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice: and let men say among the nations, The LORD reigneth. Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof: let the fields rejoice, and all that is therein. Then shall the trees of the wood sing out at the presence of the LORD, because he cometh to judge the earth. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.“
God will come to judge the earth now, hence, let us decide to dwell in His presence itself. Isaiah 60:13 “The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary; and I will make the place of my feet glorious.” These trees do not dry up easily in the heat. Isaiah 41:19 “I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah tree, and the myrtle, and the oil tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree together:” These trees are easily found in the wilderness.
Jacob recognised the importance of these trees. Genesis 30:37–39 “And Jacob took him rods of green poplar, and of the hazel and chesnut tree; and pilled white strakes in them, and made the white appear which was in the rods. And he set the rods which he had pilled before the flocks in the gutters in the watering troughs when the flocks came to drink, that they should conceive when they came to drink. And the flocks conceived before the rods, and brought forth cattle ringstraked, speckled, and spotted.” It is important to recognize the secret of these huge trees that God has spoken about. This secret was known to Jacob. In the wilderness when Jacob was in trouble, he knew how these trees were used for fertility of the sheep and how he could increase the numbers within his sheepfold. Genesis 30:43 “And the man increased exceedingly, and had much cattle, and maidservants, and menservants, and camels, and asses.” Because of this increase in husbandry, he became a rich man and this was because of the secret that Jacob learnt. Hence God’s children became prosperous, as these trees were blessed trees that brought blessings into the lives of God’s children. We are thorny and wild people, but when grafted with Jesus Christ we become fruitful and prosperous. Here we see that even the animals prospered, hence who are we?
We are God’s creation created in His own image and when we are entwined with God, God will reveal His secrets to us, just as He revealed his secrets to Jacob. Jeremiah 33:33 “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” This is how God revealed His secret to Jacob. Our God is a God of miracles. Psalms 32:8 “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.” God will give us wisdom and teach us in the way which we need to go. Our God is an impartial God. Isaiah 45:3-4 “And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the LORD, which call thee by thy name, am the God of Israel. For Jacob my servant’s sake, and Israel mine elect, I have even called thee by thy name: I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me.” Our God will show us mighty and great things in life. He will give us the treasures of darkness and the hidden riches of secret places, just as how He showed Jacob the mighty secrets. God has kept many secrets for us in life, so that we may become rich and prosperous in our lives.
May this Message bless us. Praise the Lord!
Pastor Saroja M
With the Christmas carols playing in every corner. Every Christian is busy shopping for the Christmas Eve, or has a thing or two left to be completed for Christmas.
As we enjoy the chilling winter breeze, the little ones at our Rose of Sharon Church are anxiously awaiting for the Christmas Eve. The practices are all set to a different level, as each week the practice gets rigorous.
As our little ones,youth and the elders are preparing to share the reason of God’s birth, request all readers to share with all your near and dear ones the real meaning of Christmas.
So let’s share the real joy of Christmas with all.
Wish you all a blessed and Merry Christmas.