Wednesday, October 11, 2017

All in the Family- Abraham | Colin D

This message was preached  by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on October 8th, 2017. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

We just finished the series on Jonah, so when a couple of people asked me what I was preaching on next, I said, Matthew 1: 1-16. It’s the genealogy of Jesus. How many of us skip a list of names in the Bible? Most of us do that! But behind each name is a story of amazing grace. Most of these names are from the Old Testament. But we tend to ignore it. Old testament is the New Testament concealed and the New Testament is the Old Testament revealed. So we are going to preach on each of these characters mentioned in this genealogy of Jesus. So, today we are going to talk about Abraham

Abraham is known as the friend of God. He started as an idolater, but then earned this distinction. He is the Father of the Jews and also the Father of believers. He is an important character who has been mentioned a lot in the New Testament.

In Gen 11 he is first mentioned. Before Abraham, 4 big incidents took place- Creation, the Fall, the Flood and Tower of Babel. Gen 11: 27- 3227 This is the account of Terah’s family line. Terah became the father of Abram, Nahor and Haran. And Haran became the father of Lot. 28 While his father Terah was still alive, Haran died in Ur of the Chaldeans, in the land of his birth. 29 Abram and Nahor both married. The name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milkah; she was the daughter of Haran, the father of both Milkah and Iskah. 30 Now Sarai was childless because she was not able to conceive. Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But when they came to Harran, they settled there. Terah lived 205 years, and he died in Harran.”

Gen 12: 1- 9The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Harran. 5 He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Harran, and they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there. Abram traveled through the land as far as the site of the great tree of Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. 7 The Lord appeared to Abram and said, “To your offspring[c] I will give this land.” So he built an altar there to the Lord, who had appeared to him. From there he went on toward the hills east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to the Lord and called on the name of the Lord. Then Abram set out and continued toward the Negev”   

God has great plans for Abraham Josh 24:2 talks about Abraham and says “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Long ago your ancestors, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, lived beyond the Euphrates River and worshiped other gods. 3 But I took your father Abraham from the land beyond the Euphrates and led him throughout Canaan and gave him many descendants. I gave him IsaacGod chooses people not because of anything good in them, but says, You did not choose me but I chose you. God chose one man and encountered him and met with him.

In Acts 7 when Stephen was being stoned, he spoke about the history of the Israelite nation. “Brothers and fathers, listen to me! The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham while he was still in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Harran. 3 ‘Leave your country and your people,’ God said, ‘and go to the land I will show you.’ “So he left the land of the Chaldeans and settled in Harran. After the death of his father, God sent him to this land where you are now living.” So we see that Abraham moved whereas his brother stayed back. Mesopotamia was a grand civilisation. So God is calling Abraham to go from this comfortable city and went to Harran. Then God is asking him to move without his family.
Abraham is revered by Jews, Muslims and Christians. So his name did become great. The purpose of God exalting Abraham was for a greater purpose. God blesses us so that we can be a blessing. A pot can only hold some water as per the capacity of the pot. But a pipe can take thousands of litres. We are called to be pipes.

We see the promises of God unfolding in Abraham’s life.

1.      Abraham was saved by faith- Genesis 15:6 “Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.” God saves the same way whether its Old Testament or New Testament. We have the Word of God today. As we give people the Word of God, salvation comes to them by faith. It sounds so easy! But it is by believing in Jesus at his word. Abraham was saved by faith. God called Abraham to leave his family because the idolatrous environment was probably hindering him from living a life of faith. This morning, is God calling you to leave something that is hindering you? It can be a physical move, or a move by cutting off things etc.

2.       Abraham lived by faith: he heard the voice of God and he obeyed him. 7 times God appeared to him and he obeyed immediately. Hebrews 11: 8-19 in the great hall of faith Abraham is mentioned- “By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. 9 By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she considered him faithful who had made the promise. And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore. All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” 
It means hear the voice of God and just obey. He obeyed God at every stage. There is sacrifice involved. In Gen 17 God changes his name from Abram to Abraham. Abram means exalted father, but Abraham means Father of a multitude. Imagine a person who has no hair changing his name to ‘O hairy one’. Can you imagine what the neighbours think of it? That is exactly what it was. The next year, Sarah was blessed with a child. So they declared and believed what God has said to them. We have been doing that through our daily declarations.

3.      His obedience was the evidence of his faith: Genesis 22 after his promised son, Isaac was born, God says, “Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!”“Here I am,” he replied. Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, whom you love—Isaac—and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you.”” This was the son through whom he was promised nations. But this was Abraham’s response “Early the next morning Abraham got up and loaded his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about.” So he was going to kill him and God asks him to stop. Genesis 22: 6-13Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together, 7 Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?” “Yes, my son?” Abraham replied. “The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them went on together. When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10 Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. 11 But the angel of the Lord called out to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!” “Here I am,” he replied. “Do not lay a hand on the boy,” he said. “Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.” Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram[a] caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.” Then God makes this amazing blessing in verse 15- 18 “The angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven a second time 16 and said, “I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, 18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.””  This is a wonderful picture of the gospel, because the Ram provided was Jesus himself.
Jesus says, if you love me, obey my commands. Nothing we do or not do can un-save us, but our faith must follow works. Augustine says, “We are saved by faith alone, but the faith that saves is never alone.” Let us be eager to do works of faith. What can we do today in obedience to God? It begins with faith and ends with faith, so in the end it is all about faith. We are the spiritual descendants of Abraham.


Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Why Wisdom? | Chris B

This message was preached  by Chris B at Word of Grace Church on October 1st, 2017. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.


Write down 3 things that are good about your life. For me, one of the things that really blessed me specifically today is Music. It reminds me of Dec 2013 when we were called to my Home church because the worship leader Caroline Johnson was retiring. Before I knew my theology, I was singing it. When the time came to articulate it, I had all the words because Caroline already did it for me.

Today we are going to spend time in the Book of Psalms. We will answer 3 questions:

1.      What are the Psalms?
The psalms are a song book for God’s people to carry the word of God. King David wrote a lot of these songs, to teach us to express ourselves to God. It teaches us how to rejoice, how to grieve, express thanksgiving, etc. Just like my son watched and learnt how to do a somersault, the Psalms show us how to express ourselves to God in a Biblical way. It is a blessing to have that kind of

2.      What is wisdom literature?
Just like the Torah is 5 books, the wisdom literature is also 5 books- Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs. The Biblical idea of wisdom is to align ourselves with God’s thinking. That’s why Proverbs says that the beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord.

Romans 12:1-2Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

3.      How do they help us?   
Wisdom Literature helps us in fighting sin. In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve fell into sin. They trusted in the word of the serpent rather than the Lord. Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding”. If Adam and eve understood this, they would have fought that sin.  It transforms us to the image of God by listening to this literature.

Psalm 16

1 Keep me safe, my God, for in you I take refuge. I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.”

If you take out your list of 3 good things and see how these things are from God. If you can’t trace this good back to God, then you need to ask yourself, is this thing really good?

3- 6 “I say of the holy people who are in the land, “They are the noble ones in whom is all my delight.” Those who run after other gods will suffer more and more. I will not pour out libations of blood to such gods or take up their names on my lips. Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.

It points us back to Joshua, where when God’s people entered into the Promise Land, God says this- your boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places. One of the blessings of being a part of God’s people is contentment. He is our portion and that is enough for us. The world doesn’t have contentment.

7-8 “I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”

In 1970 the NASA sent out three rockets. The Apollo 13 had a malfunction and they had to get home safely. At one point, they didn’t have enough power to get them home. That led to having to burn the rocket to propel themselves forward in space. They had to look at the earth in the window and fire the rockets to propel themselves forward. So they had to keep the earth in front of them at all times and they made it home safely. The same idea is in this word. The psalmist is saying I put the Lord in front of me, because he propels me forward. 

9 - 11“Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, nor will you let your faithful one see decay. You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand

The lie of sin is that it will make me happy. But the truth is that in His presence there is fullness of joy. When we fill our mind with truth, the appeal of sin is lost. The word of the Lord is sufficient in to keep us in our path.

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Jonah Part 3: Cruise-ship or Warship | Colin D

This message was preached  by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on September 24th, 2017. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.


Jonah 3:10-“When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened.”

Jonah 4:1-11But to Jonah this seemed very wrong, and he became angry. He prayed to the Lord, “Isn’t this what I said, Lord, when I was still at home? That is what I tried to forestall by fleeing to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. Now, Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.” But the Lord replied, “Is it right for you to be angry?” Jonah had gone out and sat down at a place east of the city. There he made himself a shelter, sat in its shade and waited to see what would happen to the city. Then the Lord God provided a leafy plant and made it grow up over Jonah to give shade for his head to ease his discomfort, and Jonah was very happy about the plant. But at dawn the next day God provided a worm, which chewed the plant so that it withered. 8 When the sun rose, God provided a scorching east wind, and the sun blazed on Jonah’s head so that he grew faint. He wanted to die, and said, “It would be better for me to die than to live.” But God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry about the plant?” “It is,” he said. “And I’m so angry I wish I were dead.” But the Lord said, “You have been concerned about this plant, though you did not tend it or make it grow. It sprang up overnight and died overnight. And should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left—and also many animals?”

What an amazing story! Here’s a prophet of God who has been instrumental in the greatest revival known to mankind- a whole city turned on 5 word- 40 days and Nineveh will be no more. Imagine this happening to you! You’d be ecstatic! And here we see that in the midst of this great spiritual outpouring, there is a prophet of God, responds with anger. What an anticlimax!

We see the mystery of why Jonah ran away. He says, I knew you are a gracious God and merciful, abounding in steadfast love. He knew God would not destroy them if they repented. He is so disappointed that he asks God three times to kill him. But God did not take his life. God loved the ninevites, but also Jonah.

Jonah went out of the city and made a tent for himself. He still wanted to see what would happen to the city. We see God’s mercy and kindness. He made a plant grow up and give Jonah some comfort. Jonah is exceedingly glad about this plant. When dawn came up the next day, the plant withered. There was a scotching east wind and he was faint. Jonah has the refrain, kill me.

Jonah was sent in the midst of a dangerous people and he proclaimed the word of the Lord and he was successful. But he was more concerned with his self-interest than the heart of God. He was not happy for the salvation of those who are enemies of Jews.

Exodus 34:6- “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness” When God delivered the Israelites from Egypt, and Moses went away to the top of the mount Sinai, the Israelites had made idols and God wanted to kill them. So Moses pleaded with God and he relents. Then Moses remarks this. God is gracious to the weak humanity, merciful to the guilty, slow to anger in the face of grevious sin, abounding in love to the unlovely and relating from disaster to the one who repents. That is our wonderful God.

Jonah was entrusted with the very words of God that could transform cities. In the midst of that revival he was concerned about his own comfort. Who would Jonah remind us of today? The church!

We can be people who are so happy we’re saved. But do we have the heart of God for God out there? We were like that at one time and the mercy of God drew us to repentance. Like Jonah who was so concerned about his own comfort, it can become our preoccupation.

Titus 1:2-3in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, 3 and which now at his appointed season he has brought to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior,

You and I have been entrusted with the word of God.

1 cor 1:21- God chooses to save poepel through the foolishness of what has been preached. When we proclaim the word, there is power to transform individuals and save cities. Are we concerned more with the plant than the people? A church can get so preoccupied with meeting the needs of the people. we are here for the lost.

2 Cor 5:11- “Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade others.” Verse 18- “All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation”

Imagine the church is like a ship- what kind of ship would it be? A cruiseship where you have all the comforts of the world? Or a warship? A warship is where are on amission where we roll up our sleeves and get to work because we are on a mission.

Daniel  12:3- “Those who are wise[a] will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.”

Matthew 12:30- ““Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.” There is no neutral. If we do not gather, it is like being in the river, where if you don’t paddle in the opposite direction, you are scattering, going away in with the river.  

If we are not fishers of men, how closely are we following Jesus?   

We see who God is in this story

God is sovereign. He is in control of the fish, the plant, the worm to eat the plant, the sun to shine and wind to blow. Let’s proclaim the gospel boldly because he’s in control of everything in the world. We need to seek the kingdom. seeking the kingdom is also about using out time and talents to reach the lost.

Have we become complacent or do we have the heart of God for people? Let’s engage the world around us!



Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Hospitality: Loving one another | Colin D

This message was preached  by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on September 17th, 2017. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

Over time, the meanings of words change. Gay used to mean happy. Now it means something else. Nice used to mean foolish. But today the meaning has changed. It’s the same with the word silly- it meant, a blessed person. Hospitable today means having your friends and family over. But earlier, in Hebrews 13, where it mentions hospitality it’s derived from two root words, xenos and philio- which means love for strangers. So hospitality means inviting people you don’t know.

We have digressed from Jonah, but we are going to look at Biblical hospitality. The role of the leadership in the church is to help each of us to obey. We do that in two ways- by teaching, exhorting, etc. and secondly by putting it into practice.

Romans 12: 9- “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”

Showing love is through hospitality. Hospitality is not having your relatives for a meal. It is love for strangers. It doesn’t mean you pick someone up from the street and have them in your house, but it is someone you do not know very well.

1 Peter 4: 9- Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.”

In 1 Timothy Paul states hospitality as one of the qualifications for a leader. This is not just for leaders but for everyone in the church.

Q. Why should we be hospitable?

It starts with genesis 18 with Abraham. He offered hospitality to strangers. In the next chapter, Lot pursues some people so that he could be hospitable to them. In the New Testament, we see Jesus, Peter, Lydia and many more practicing hospitality.
In the modern time, we consider it an intrusion when people come over. So I want to share this morning about loving one another. The way we outwork love is to practice hospitality.

Q. What is hospitality not?

1.      Hospitality is not putting out a massive spread. It can be a simple meal. Hospitality is not entertaining- it is to spend quality time with one another. It needs to be loving.

2.      Hospitality is not about you but the person who you invite. It is not for us to boast and share about all our achievements. It is for you to share life with one another. We need to make it about Jesus because that’s why we are doing it in the first place. Often it leads to connection.

3.      In our culture the women stay in the kitchen. But the key thing is the fellowship that is happening over the meal. So the women need to participate in the conversations.

Q. What is hospitality?

You are inviting people without expecting anything back. There is a reward and we need to look to Jesus for the reward, not to be invited back.

One of the things in Word of Grace is that we invite people over for a meal soon after the Sunday meeting.

To the singles- in India, when we say I’m single, it sounds like they are helpless. But my exhortation to the singles is to practice hospitality anyway. What can you do? You can invite people to a restaurant. You can team up with someone who are a home and invite someone there. To a potluck, bring more than a loaf of bread.

Leviticus 19: 33-34 “‘When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. 34 The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.

We might not have been in Egypt, but we were dead in our transgressions. Now, he made us alive. And because we have this great salvation, we practice hospitality. We must put our heart into it. Hospitality will cost us something. It is all about them and not about us.

I want to commend the church because we are a hospitable people. It doesn’t depend on the size of the house, but the size of the heart.

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.