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Thanksgiving Day is full of beauty, being the day in which we look our Creator in the eye and tell Him in a unique and special way, “Thank you”. It seems banal, but it is divine. It seems too little, but it is enough. It seems unimportant, but it is indispensable... Read more...

Pastor Luigi Mițoi - This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

October 2018

 
 

paSTOR`S PAGE

October 2018

October 7 

            

    Relationships among people are absolutely necessary and generally very pleasant but sometimes become hard to manage. This is why normalization was invented, and as a result, agreements have emerged in relations between people. At the social level, laws are voted into place and at the international level, treaties. In Christianity, the norms are given by God through the Bible and the quality of the spiritual life of practicing Christians depends on their fulfilling of the norms and commandments in the Bible. Spiritual normalization is given by God, and it can never be changed by men.
    In social terms, the two most important normative acts are the Civil Code and the Constitution. The current Civil Code of Romania was enacted in October of 2011, replacing the old Civil Code enacted in December of 1865. The Civil Code is adopted by the Parliament, the supreme representative body and the sole legislative authority of Romania. In addition, the Civil Code may be modified by the majority vote of the two houses of Parliament, the Senate and the House of Deputies. The Constitution is the fundamental law of the Romanian State that regulates the principles of state organization, the rights, freedoms and duties of every citizen. The current Constitution of Romania was enacted in December of 1991 following its approval by a national referendum. This Constitution was amended in October 2003 by a national referendum. Organic laws in the Civil Code are subordinated to international treaties, but the provisions of the Constitution are not subordinated to any law, inside or outside the country.
    The national referendum on October 6-7 was initiated by three million Romanians. The concrete purpose of this Referendum is to explicitly define marriage in the Constitution as being between man and woman. The Civil Code already has this explicit definition, but the Civil Code can be changed at any time by the vote of the members of the two Chambers of Parliament. The Constitution can only be modified by the National Referendum, by the vote of the citizens of the country, and the Constitution is not subordinated to international treaties as the Civil Code is. For example, the Istanbul Convention is an international treaty adopted by the Council of Europe in May 2011. The stated purpose of this Convention is to prevent and combat violence against women and domestic violence. Through this statement, the Istanbul Convention insinuates that the man is a potential aggressor, despite statistics stating the reciprocity of domestic violence. Then, behind the apparent concern about violence against women, the Istanbul Convention imposes gender identity, the re-education of parents, and the deconstruction and reconstruction of the "new man." It also explains the social and legal mechanisms that will control and constrain the population. Romania is one of the countries that ratified the Istanbul Convention in 2016, despite the fact that many of our neighbors did not sign this treaty: Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Greece, Hungary, Russia, Ireland and the United Kingdom. The Istanbul Convention calls the marriage between a man and a woman established by God a "stereotype" and has effectively declared war against it by implementing the idea of gender identity.
    The referendum on the 6th – 7th of October is the only method through which we can protect the country and future generations from this forced process of paganizing and perverting that is irreversible. God has called us to reaffirm what He affirmed in the Bible. If not us, then who?

 

 October 21

The Church was designed and created by God as the bride of His Son Jesus Christ. The value of unity in the Church is given by several factors:
1. Value through belonging – The Church belongs to Jesus Christ. When Meghan Markle married Prince Harry, she became a princess and her wedding was one of the most publicized in history.
2. Value by achievements – The Church is the place where God works, where the lives and eternal destinies of people truly change.
One of the greatest achievements of the Church is unity, and the benefits of unity are essential for the mission of the Church:
1. The evangelization of the world: “I pray that all of them may be one, as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, ... that the world may believe that You have sent Me" (John 17:21). The unity of the Church is the most efficient method of evangelization, this being the testimony, reputation, and honor of the Church. We come to God in worship and we go to people to evangelize.
2. Peace and joy in the Church; “The Church enjoyed peace in all of Judea, Galilee, and Samaria; it was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers” (Acts 9:31). A unified church demonstrates repentance, hope, peace, joy and peace of mind.
3. It demonstrates the presence and power of God. “The Church enjoyed peace in all of Judea, Galilee, and Samaria; it was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers” (Acts 9:31).
The unity of the Church of God has many enemies:
1. The external enemy – the world. Definition: “the social systems that function outside the authority of God”.
2. The internal enemy – the flesh. When there are people in the Church led by the flesh, there is competition, envy, greed, pride, gossip, unforgiveness, strife, dissentions, division… The Savior said, “If a kingdom is divided against itself, it cannot stand” (Mark 3:24).
   Unity needs to be built, maintained, and promoted by certain attitudes:
1. Common teaching: “union of faith and knowledge” (Ephesians 4:13-16).
2. Living in Love: “Because I am confident that neither death nor life, nor angels nor dominions… will be able to separate us from the love of God…” (Romans 8:38-39). Whoever has unity with God on the vertical level will have horizontal level unity with his brothers in the same way.
   Is there unity in diversity or only in likeness? Can people be different in principle, faith, priorities, methods of working, vision, goal, objective, choices… and still live in unity? How much unity can there be among religions, ethnicities, different cultures? Is there unity between a husband and wife when they have different ways of life in terms of mentality and lifestyle? Why do so many families separate because of differences, arguing “our characters do not match”? There may be unity in diversity in the presence of tolerance that harmonizes differences. But how large should the tolerance be? How much can different people in a relationship really tolerate? Is unity in diversity a theoretical slogan or can it be a real way of life? Can there be unity in the presence of diversity or only in likeness?
   Unity is a commandment, a condition for happiness in a relationship, an expectation that God has of us, a test of character, a condition for heaven.

 October 28

The cursing of the unfruitful fig tree still sparks controversy today. Some believe that the Savior was not entitled to act the way He did because it was not yet time for the harvest; others believe that the Lord manifested this weakness due to hunger. It is at least bold to claim that the Lord was unfair or angry in the circumstances surrounding the cursing of the fig tree. In order to correctly understand the divine message of the incident, we need to observe a few things:
I. ESTABLISHING THE CONTEXT:
a. The Savior is at the end of His three and a half year mission; in order words, the end of the period of time in which he continuously taught the Jewish people, explaining the Scriptures to them
b. The incident takes place on a Monday, the second day of the Passion week. In this week, the Lord became very direct with the Pharisees and Scribes and most of His dialogue is with them. He spends Sunday night in Lazaraus, Martha, and Mary’s home in Bethany and Monday morning he leaves for Jerusalem, disciples which is approximately 2 miles in distance, with His disciples. On the way to Jerusalem, the Savior becomes famished and, finding a fig tree on the road, he curses it because He finds no fruit in it. It is interesting to note the fact that the Lord was so hungry, that he was famished on the road, despite the fact that He had just left the home of His friends. Why? Perhaps to teach the disciples something about the grace of God wasted on foolish Jews?
II. THE SPECIFICS OF THE FIG TREE. The fig tree is the first tree mentioned in the Bible (Genesis 3:7) and the Jewish people are the first people of the Lord (Genesis 12:1-3). The fig and the vine are two of the most profound symbols of the Israelites. The fig is a tree about 3 – 4 meters tall and has the peculiarity that fruit appears on it before leaves do. In Israel, the fig tree bore fruit twice ; the first harvest took place in March – April and the second in the fall season (Hosea 9:10). The spring figs were small and not very tasty, while the fall harvest was very tasty and numerous.
III. THE COURSE OF EVENTS. On the way to Jerusalem, seeing a fig tree with leaves, even though it was not the time of the October harvest, the Lord expected to see small figs, because it was sometime around 30-33 March (BC). Not finding them, the Lord intentionally said out loud so that the disciples would hear, “Forever no man shall eat any fruit from you” (Micah 11:14b)
IV. INTERPRETATION OF THE EVENT. The cursing of the fig tree is the second time that the Lord does something that brings the judgment of God, the first being in Gadara, when he allows the demons to enter the pigs that have thrown themselves into the sea. Why does the Lord curse a fig tree that does not have fruit, if it was not the time of the fruits? If the Lord actually had a weakness, how did His disciples allow themselves to expose Him, recording this event in the Scriptures? It is true, it was not the time of ripe figs in October, but the presence of leaves tells of the presence of early figs. The fig tree was not cursed for lack of fruit, but for the presence of leaves that promised early figs but did not deliver. The issue was not the big and tasty fruit, but simply some early, green, small, and tasteless figs. What is the meaning of the incident?
As was the fig tree, so was the Temple, so was the land. Like the fig tree that promises, so also were the Jews, full of religious appearances, hiding the their lack of bearing fruit. The curse of the fig tree was a prophecy about what would happen to the Jews 30 years later when they were destroyed by the Romans for about 19 centuries. This nation trusted in themselves, not in God. In this period the branches of the Gentiles were grafted into the fig tree (Romans 11:11). The curse of the fig tree takes place after the Lord tells the parable of the fig tree, warning that it has no fruit, and the gardener is defending the tree for another period of time. Even after the required period of time was allocated to the fig tree, the tree did not bear fruit, so it was necessary to cut it. Neither the person of the Savior nor his sermons and miracles helped the tree bear fruit. Full of leaves, but without fruit.
Happiness is not only for Israel, it is equally available for the Church: "For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either" (Romans 11:21). The tree is known according to its fruit, not according to its leaves. The fruit nourishes others, saturates them, helps them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
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"The Good Shepherd" is a Christian TV program that was established in 1997 in Portland, Oregon, as part of The Messengers Mission. In the beginning, this TV evangelization project was broadcasted locally only, in several Romanian cities. Starting with 2003, the program began to be broadcasted on TELE7abc channel, and starting with 2004, on OTV national channel.

 

The program is now broadcasted twice a week on OTV channel, and through the INTELSAT 1002 satellite, it can be viewed throughout Europe.

 

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