26 October 2008

Were you really repentant?

My buddy and I got into an interesting disscussion not too long ago.

The whole thing really began with myself. I was supposed to preach at a school last thirsday night, it has since been postpone to this coming thirsday evening. Its a whole other story! I don't preach publicly at all. I last preached at the same school for the very first time about two or so years ago.

Anyway, my other buddy, one of the leaders from the same school (DK), had asked me to speak on, "The previlages of being a Christian", from an evangelistic point of view. Being a very controvesial individual, I immediately had a problem. In essence I was being asked to show the non-Christians the previlages of being a Christian inorder to, as it were, entice them into becoming Christians. Unfortunately, or fortunately rather, Christianity doesn't work that way. Its not like convincing or luring someone into changing political parties by telling them the advantages of doing so!

Christianity comes from true repentance, being contrite. And thats where all the problems emanated from with my buddy.

If you agree with the above statement, "Christianity comes from true repentance", you may want to look at the statement alittle more thoroughly! If you don't, let me try to convince you otherwise.

When my buddies and I go out evangelising, we tend to parallel the relationship between our hearer and God as that of the relationship between a son/daughter (who has wronged their father) and his/her father. It is very useful, as it knocks out certain potential problems when we preach the way of slavation.

For example, It knocks out good works as a way of salvation. We say, suppose you have wronged your father and you, perharps, are no longer on speaking terms, would you sending him a gift to rectify the situation? Will your buying him a gift, putting fuel in his car or washing his car or preparing him a great meal or doing anything good for/to him, will any of those things reconcile you to your father? Ofcourse not! You fathers interest is your coming to him and repenting, i.e. saying you are sorry and stopping to do that which upset your relationship in the first place. If anything, he will reject those gifts because things are unwell between you. In the same way, going to church, tithing, giving to the poor, singing in the choir, even getting baptised doesn't reconcile one to God, those "good deeds" only please the father when things are right between you, i.e. when you repent!

Alright, now to convince those who may not agree with the statement, "Christianity comes from true repentance". Using the above principle, A son wrongs his father. We've already seen that sacrifice or gifts don't help the situation. Would you say the son is truely sorry if he decided to make things right because, for example, he hears that his father is contemplating removing him from his will or his father is prosecuting all those who owe him money and jailing those who can't pay. He remembers that he owes his father money and thus rushes off to make things right lest he end up behing bars. Would you call the son truely sorry for what he did? ...I don't think so either! Why? Because fear is driving his apology and that is not true repentance! Well then, if you agree, what would you say about those who say, I became a Christian because I feared that I would go to hell? Is that really being sorry for sin? Is that really someone who has realised his sin and God's love for him inspite and despite his sin? Is that one who truely regrets the life he once led? Or is it someone driven by fear? Well, I leave it to you to decide.

When, then, is a son who has wronged his father truely repentant? As my dad says, "no prize for guessing". It is when one realises that he has sinned against God and that God loves him and will take him back if he genuinely confesses his sin and stops doing that which he used to do, 1 John 1:8-9, Romans 10:9.

I don't cry much. I really don't cry at all, but I remember the day I got saved, 10 years ago this month, I wept like a baby. I sat down to ask myself why I cried like I did that late evening years later, I realised that I was really moved by my sin. I was truely sorry for my sins. I saw myself as one who had wronged a God who did nothing but love me. I'm not saying, if you didn't cry, you aren't saved, by no means! I'm saying if you were not sorry for your sins, you may not be saved. To disagree would be to refute the earlier mentioned example.

As I pondered these thoughts while preparing my sermon, in my heart, I discovered that, I could not for the life of me remember any true christian say that they decided to become a Christian because they were scared of hell. I've probably heard a true Christian say they did become a Christian for fear of hell but as I said, I can not remember any.

I decided to test this on my buddy. He is a christian. I asked him how he got saved and what led him to salvation. It was clear from what he seemed to be saying that it was for fear of God's wrath-hell. Well, from what he said, I really think even though he says it was fear, he definately seemed to have realised he was a sinner when he recieved Christ. That is why in the paragraph before last, I state that you may not be a christian, its because, I know someone who is and yet says he was in essence driven by fear.

How then do I explain my buddy's case? Well, the first thing that trigered his thoughts of God was his watching a graphic movie about hell. He was so scared, he rushed home to pray! But according to him, he says he became a Christian some time later through Christian literature. If you ask me, through that literature he came to faith by true repentance.

In terms of application, I think it is wrong to share the gospel as christians by scaring people by speaking of hell because that is not the gospel. The gospel is, You are a sinner who has wronged a holy God, God loves you despite and inspite of your sin, Repent and believe because he wants you so bad-he really, really loves you! It was good enough for a wretch like me, it should be good enough for the world!

Give me that old time religion
Tis the old time religion,
Tis the old time religion,
And it's good enough for me.
It was good for our mothers.
And it's good enough for me.
Makes me love everybody.
And it's good enough for me.
It has saved our fathers.
And it's good enough for me.
It will do when I am dying.
And it's good enough for me.
It will take us all to heaven.
And it's good enough for me.

Give me that old time religion
Tis the old time religion,
Tis the old time religion,
And it's good enough for me.


20 October 2008

Shocking revelation!

No verse has ever hit me like Ezekiel 33.1-9!

Ezekiel 33:1-9

1 The word of the LORD came to me:
2 "Son of man, speak to your countrymen and say to them: 'When I bring the sword against a land, and the people of the land choose one of their men and make him their watchman,
3 and he sees the sword coming against the land and blows the trumpet to warn the
4 then if anyone hears the trumpet but does not take warning and the
sword comes and takes his life, his blood will be on his own head.
5 Since he heard the sound of the trumpet but did not take warning, his blood will be on his own head. If he had taken warning, he would have saved himself.
6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes the life of one of them, that man will be
taken away because of his sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for his
7 "Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of
Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me.
8 When I say to the wicked, 'O wicked man, you will surely die,' and you do not speak out to dissuade him from his ways, that wicked man will die for his sin, and I will
hold you accountable for his blood.
9 But if you do warn the wicked man to turn from his ways and he does not do so, he will die for his sin, but you will
have saved yourself.

Here is a crystal clear analogy of a man whose job is to watch over a city by being on the lookout for any threats to the city. This particular watchman fails to perform his duty to warn the city of oncoming attackers. The bible tells us that the blood of the city will be upon the watchman's head.

If you think about it, this passage make absolute sense! Suppose I discover that the apples in the fridge at home, have gone bad and will result in a stomach upset if ingested. Suppose I, for whatever reason, do not warn the rest of the family of the danger of eating those apples. Who is to blame when, the next day, everyone is sick?! Who will feel guilty if one of the family members die of complications caused by eating those apples? On whose head will the blood of the deceased be? Who is accountable for the death? Me, me, me!

This scripture shook me to the core!

As a child of God, I have been given the responsibility to preach the gospel of the Lord Jesus. If I have ever come in contact with anyone and not warned them of the wrath to come, should they perish, their blood will be upon my head! Yes, they will be punished, but there blood will be on my head!

When I realised this, I thought of all the people I have come in contact with since I came to know the Lord, cousins, uncles, aunties, inlaws, classmates, schoolmates, visiters at church, guys I play soccer with a couple times a week, neighbours etc. How many of them have I warned?! How many of them have I lost contact with? How many of them have I failed to minister to by being a testimony of God's grace? How many of them have I, not only, never preached the gospel to but never lived the gospel to? How many have I, myself, mislead by not correcting their ways?

Names began to flash through my mind. People who i'll never be able to speak to about God love because i've lost contact, people whose blood is upon my head.

This passage tells me that I should warn all those I am in contact with, all my classmates, all my teachers, all my neighbours and family. Its a huge task but it is not optional or else their blood is on my head.

Psalms 1:5,

"Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the
congregation of the righteous."

is clear on the fact that the ungodly will not stand. It is truly by God's grace alone that I shall. It is truly by God's grace that we, Christians, shall.


Getting the camera out and having some Fellowship!

Saturday afternoon after the youth meeting was really fun! A couple of us were sitting on the lawn infront of the church entrance. We got the Camera out and got a couple pics, I thought i'd share a few. By the way, I am the guy with the glasses.

From left to right: Henry, Ann, Mwindula, Nelly, Edwin, Esther and Abraham.

Yup, I am a member of KBC.

Finally, while we were still busy taking pictures, some other youths found us and we took a shot of all those who joined us.

I learnt quite a while back that fellowship is not just when a group of Christians spend time attending to spiritual matters or topics. Fellowship is alot more than that. Getting the camera out and just having fun together is really nice. Sitting on the lawn just chatting away and laughing is really nice. So long as sin is absent, God delights in his children having fun together to the glory of his name. Fellowship glorifies the Lord's name.


19 October 2008

He almost got away with it!

Last night was unique for my family. Usually when it’s a family member’s birthday, we have a small party in the evening. We cut the cake, bring out the confectionaries and sit around our dinning table. Each individual gets to ask the birthday man, woman boy or girl any question in the world and it must be answered! After that is done, the birthday man, woman, boy or girl is given the opportunity to tell each family member, anything that is upon their heart to do with the particular person, be it advise, rebuke, praise etc. Dad says it’s the only time we [the children] get to tell “dad and mom” whatever we want and be able to get away with it!

Anyway, my brother and I have birthdays under 3 weeks apart. None us had any evening party but last night we gathered in the sitting room to perform the “question and answer ritual”.

Actually we [the kids] were busy watching “Pirates of the Caribbean” when dad interrupted the movie. Well we all gathered round and got started. I was first as my birthday came before my brother’s. My interest is not what happened during that session but what happened afterwards. When we were done my Dad asked us to get our bibles so we could look at something.

About a month and a half ago my cousin got expelled from school for drinking, bless his heart. Two of my cousins live with us but are only home 3 months a year because they are in boarding school. Well, they are in their final year and were returning to school after their final break before they finished high school when one of them got expelled after arriving drunk (or rather arriving, having drunk alcohol) at school on his first day after holiday. Well, he came right back home.

Its worth mentioning here that my dad is a very calm man. You could come home from killing someone and he won’t pounce on you but greet you almost as though nothing happened [hyperbole (!)]. Well that’s how he greeted my cousin, with a smile on his face, of course telling my mischievous cousin that “they needed to have a chat”.

Dad’s an extremely busy man and did not have that “chat” with my cousin. It was beginning to look like he was going to get away with it. Well, didn’t he get the shock of his life last night when dad not only addressed the issue but addressed it quite strongly, for lack of a better word!

My cousin leaves for his boarding school to write his final exams (as that is where he is registered) tomorrow, Monday.

After we got our bibles that eventful evening, dad asked us to turn to Matthew 5:44.

"But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" - Jesus
of Nazareth, as recorded in Matthew 5:44 (NIV translation)

We discussed the passage a while, then dad asked, “Why is it important for Christians to love their enemies?”

Dad wanted a particular answer and after a while it was crystal clear. If Christians do not love their enemies they will misrepresent their Father who is in heaven and will cause the world to mock God.

Then came the punch line! Dad used this same analogy in the home setup. He said that when we as children of the home go out of the house to school or whatever we are perceived as reflections of our parents. Therefore if we carry ourselves in any way, whether positive or negative, people will say “So this is the way this child’s parents have brought him/her up.” Therefore, if my parents have brought me up with Christian values and I go get myself drunk on the first day of school, I a misrepresenting my parents.

Dad went further to illustrate how that my cousin had misrepresented dad and mom. It was really embarrassing for him, he must have wanted to sink 6 feet underground but I think it was well worth it, especially if the point was driven home. We love him and care for him too much to see him wind down the spiral of alcoholism and drunkeness. We will do everything in our power to prevent it!

Dad said in closing that it is not easy to represent parents correctly as children or God correctly as Christians, but we should be driven by gratitude for our parents and for God.

In the case of our parents, they have clothed, fed, educated, loved, cared and served us each and everyday of our lives, surely the least we can do is not make them the subject of mockery by misrepresenting them.

In the case of the Christian, God has chosen, called, justified, adopted, set free, transformed, imparted peace, joy and love and redeemed. The list is endless! Surely the least we can do is not make him the subject of mockery by misrepresenting him.

It was quite an evening that Saturday, the 18 of October, 2008.


11 October 2008


Someone once told me that she couldn't write without inspiration. I have found that I am always inspired to write. For me the thats the norm. Catch me on any day, anytime, give me pen and paper better still a blog, and I will write some thing. So am always inspired but unfortunately, my inspiration goes, I have come to realise, when I am upset. Whether I am the upsetee or the upsetter, I lose my inspiration. Anyway, what do I have to say about courtship?

I know that many older folks at church would be suprised to see young Mwindula, posting or discussing courtship probably because am still rather young or still regarded as young (It is especially so when people watch you grow or as they say, "you grow up in their eyes"). Anyway the issue of relationships is really huge among teens and post teens. I myself am under pressure to be in a relationship. When I shared this with three of my buddies, two of them said they too were under pressure. The third denied.

Most of the guys in my age group are in their early college years, a couple years away from independence and thus nowhere ready for marriage and yet are under pressure to be in relationships. I mean if we got into relationships now, we would be in courtship for atleast 4 years. Relationships should therefore be the last, well, second last thing on our minds. This is not the case.

The question is, where is the pressure to be in a relationship coming from?

I think it comes mostly from seeing our older friends bragging about their girlfriends and, you know, being in love and being with those they love. This, coupled with the predominant "relationship talk", among youths, could account for the source of the pressure.

I have some thoughts on the whole issue of relationships:

When an individual finishes school and begins college, he should, at that stage of his life, be able to relate to girls freely. In other words, that phobia of girls should be gone. At that point relationships are definately out! It will be years until he is independent and so it would be too early to get into courtship. It is during this period that he should continue to interact with his girlfriends or rather "friends who are girls". He should do this with all purity, i.e. No intention! His motive must be entirely pure. He should seek to relate to ladies like he would his sister, spuring and encouraging one another in love and ofcourse just enjoying each others company.

That is why youth meetings are so, so important. They facilitate this interaction. As he interacts with ladies during youth trips, evangelism, sports and so on, he will begin to appreciate the opposite sex and get to know how they are different from men. All wrong notions of women will begin to be cleared, for example, because of ones background, one may see women as objects. Interaction with ladies in ones youth group will help such an individual realise that they are not objects and thus one begins to regard women as they really are.

This topic is getting a little broad, perharps I should do it in parts...I'll end here for now though,


10 October 2008

Mwanawasa's Family Pictures

Here are some pictures of our late president and his family. If you want to know more about the amazing thing he did, read the precurrent post. Very few things are as beautiful as family...

You gatta love family,
Mwindula Mbewe.