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From Burglar to Benefactor

This week, on June 26th, I have passed sixteen years of my faith in Christ. It is on this day, in the year 1996, I was saved and transformed by the life-transforming power of Christ Jesus. At that time, I was 19 years and now 36 years old. If there is any wonderful and unregrettable decision I have made in my entire life, it is the decision to give my life to Christ in my very young life. Hallelujah!

Stealing and Prospering
As I reflect on my past life, i.e. life before Christ, I feel ashamed of being a thief. I was clever at stealing from the time I was a small kid, stealing toys in carnivals. In my teens, I remember of once robbing a set of products from a big shop. My friend was a decent guy and was so afraid of joining with me in this theft. Nevertheless, I persuaded him not to fear and stole the products.

Somehow I was observed and was caught outright. My friend and I were dragged to the nearby police station. When we watched other thieves badly beaten by the police, my friend was…

What are Your Idols?

John, an apostle of Christ Jesus, ends his first epistle with these words, “Dear children, keep yourselves from idols” (1 John 5:21). Knowing that this epistle is written to God’s people, this seems to be a strange exhortation, for we associate idols usually with pagan worship. Reading the entire epistle reveals that just like the Israelis of the Old Testament who were influenced by the pagan customs and often fell into the sin of idolatry, we do not see such a problem with the believers to whom John was addressing.

So, what does it mean to "keep yourselves from idols"?

It appears that John wasn’t addressing a physical idol to which pagans pay homage. It seems to be a figurative language, using the term “idol” to make a significant point. An idol is anything that takes God’s place, robbing the attention, passion and devotion which belong primarily to God alone. Although believers may detest worshiping pagan idols, it is quite possible for us to erect earthly things in our …

Can Married Couples Watch Pornography Together? [Part 2]

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2) The object of sexual stimulation should be the body of your own spouse, not sexually explicit pictures and videos wherein the other person’s body is viewed for sensual provocation. 
Many don’t give careful thought to what happens when couples watch pornography together for the purpose of stimulating themselves to have sexual intercourse. Are they are not receiving sensual stimulation from others’ bodies, nakedness and sexual act? Don’t you think the bodies of other people would become more stimulating for them than the body of their own spouse? Who ultimately is your source of sexual pleasure—your own spouse or that sexually explicit person in porn?

Here is a fact which many are unaware. Porn stars often build up the structure of their bodies for public attraction. Their breasts and genitals are enhanced surgically. They project themselves in such a sexy way that they become irresistibly fascinating.

Now how does this impact the couple who watch these unusual bodies? The bod…

Can Married Couples Watch Pornography Together? [Part 3]

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3) Watching pornography together may create more distance between one another, particularly during interpersonal problems.

There are those who are misled into thinking that watching pornography together will build sexual intimacy in marriage. Let us examine this fallacy. 
I think, we all agree that marriage is not always a bed of roses. There are good times and there are bad times. When times are good, a husband and wife may enjoy each other sexually, but when difficult times come, i.e. interpersonal problems, where do you think they may turn to satisfy themselves?
When husband and wife offend each other and when wife is not in a mood to have sex with her husband, there is a great possibility for her husband to turn to porn for some physical satisfaction. He who is used to watch with his wife will now watch alone for his personal pleasure. This may even lead to addiction to porn, even to some extramarital affair, eventually leading to disastrous family life.
You know, sometimes …

Can Married Couples Watch Pornography Together? [Part 1]

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One day my wife and I happened to visit a married couple. As I was discussing about marital issues with them, the woman candidly asked me a question—“Is it okay for my husband and me to watch pornography together? Someone known to me suggested it is sexually healthy for a couple to watch porn together.”

There are many misleading voices these days, saying—“Watching porn together is one of the best ways a couple can connect.” “Watching porn together strengthens your sexual relationship.” “Watching porn together adds fuel into your dry marriage.” I have even found an article entitled, “Couples who watch porn together stay together.”

According to a debate on Times of India.com on whether couples are okay with watching porn together, 53 pct felt that it was perfectly natural, while 43 pct held it to be morally degrading. If this is the perspective in a more conservative and traditional nation like India, which is now becoming more liberal in moral issues, I can imagine the vot…

Hear O Servants of God

In His discourse with the disciples, Jesus said, “What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul?” (Matt. 16:26). Many make a mistake in assuming that this question chiefly applies to unbelievers who run after the earthly things. But coming to the context, we learn that Jesus was actually speaking to His followers, to His disciples, to His future apostles, teaching them the cost of true discipleship.
"What does it profit to us if we gain everything in the world, yet forfeit our own soul?" This serious exhortation applies to us, the leaders representing God, as to anyone else. As we live in this sinful world serving the Lord, are we not surrounded by numerous temptations to serve God with a worldly attitude? Is it not possible to do the Lord's work with selfish ambitions, eventually gaining the world but forfeiting our soul?

Few days back I met a brother in the Lord who wrote a song, in which one verse goes like this, "You who say …