Let’s talk business :: From the Cross – 3rd Saying


When Jesus was twelve years old, he questioned, “Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49) and on his crucifixion, he spoke seven sayings that are often expanded upon on Good Friday services, all over the world. This series, ‘Let’s talk business’ is a look at the seven sayings of Jesus Christ from the Cross, from a business perspective. Today we shall look at the third saying from the Cross, “Woman, behold thy son … behold thy mother” as recorded in John 19:26-27.

According to BusinessDictionary.com, the term “Merger” is used to describe a voluntary amalgamation of two firms on roughly equal terms into one new legal entity. Mergers are effected by exchange of pre-merger stock/shares for the stock of the new firm.

When Jesus told his mother, ‘Woman, behold your son’, referring to the disciple whom he loved and to the disciple, ‘Behold your mother’, referring to his mother, he was in a sense, establishing a merger between two families into one. This merger was effected by the exchange of his life for ours and after his resurrection, he called his disciples, ‘brethren’, establishing the fact that the disciples who believed in him were part of his family and joint heirs in the kingdom of God.

Points to ponder:
Are you part of God’s family? In other words, have you believed in the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. In business terms, that would be akin to asking, ‘Have you merged with Jesus Christ?’

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

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Let’s talk business :: From the Cross – 2nd Saying


When Jesus was twelve years old, he questioned, “Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49) and on his crucifixion, he spoke seven sayings that are often expanded upon on Good Friday services, all over the world. This series, ‘Let’s talk business’ is a look at the seven sayings of Jesus Christ from the Cross, from a business perspective. Today we shall look at the second saying from the Cross, “Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.” as recorded in Luke 23:43.

According to BusinessDictionary.com, the term “Promissory Note” is a written, signed, unconditional, and unsecured promise by one party (the maker or promisor) to another (the payee or promisee) that commits the maker to pay a specified sum on demand, or on a fixed or a determinable date. Promissory notes such as bank and currency notes are negotiable instruments.

When Jesus said to the repentant malefactor who hung alongside Jesus, that ‘Today shalt thou be with me in paradise’, he was making a promissory note. The malefactor name was written in the Lamb’s book of life and signed by Jesus’ blood (Revelation 1:5; Revelation 20:11-15). It was unconditional as the malefactor did not have to do anything to receive what was promised to him and it was unsecured in the sense that the malefactor had nothing to be used as collateral to receive the promise that Jesus made. The determinable date was that very day (Today) and it committed Jesus, the promisor, to pay with his very life, so that this malefactor could enjoy the benefits of being in the presence of God (with Jesus), when he recognized Jesus Christ and believed in him as Lord and King (for the malefactor said “Lord, remember me when thou comest  into thy kingdom” (Luke 23:42).

Points to ponder:
In business terms, Jesus’ saying “Today shalt thou be with me in paradise” is a promissory note of being with him in paradise and it is for all mankind who repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as Lord and King. Have you received this promissory note from God? If you have not, don’t tarry, for the Bible says, that Today (now) is your determinable day; your day of Salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2) and you can come and negotiate (reason) together with God, for though our sins are like scarlet, He shall wash them white as snow (Isaiah 1:18).

Revelation 20:11-15 (KJV)
11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

Isaiah 1:18 (KJV)
18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool

Luke 23:39-43 (KJV)
39 And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.
40 But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?
41 And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss.
42 And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.
43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.

Let’s talk business :: From the Cross – 1st Saying


When Jesus was twelve years old, he questioned, “Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49) and on his crucifixion, he spoke seven sayings that are often expanded upon on Good Friday services, all over the world. This series, ‘Let’s talk business’ is a look at the seven sayings of Jesus Christ from the Cross, from a business perspective. Today we shall look at the first saying from the Cross, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” as recorded in Luke 23:34.

According to BusinessDictionary.com, the term “Absorbed Account” is used to describe an account that is merged or combined with another related account and once absorbed, the original account ceases to exist, even though a paper trail remains showing proof of how the funds have been moved.

When Jesus said, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do”, he was indeed absorbing the debt (the wages of sin is death) of all mankind into his very own account, for He who knew no sin, became sin for the Salvation of mankind (2 Corinthians 5:21). Now our debt ceases to exist, even though our conscience may exist to remind us of how unworthy we were, yet now without condemnation for having believed in Jesus Christ, the Only begotten Son of God and Savior of all mankind.

Points to ponder:
In business terms, “Father, forgive them for I am absorbing their account/debt”, said Jesus. Question: Has your life’s account been absorbed by Jesus Christ?

Luke 23:34 (KJV)
34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

1 Corinthians 5:21 (KJV)
21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

I volunteer, I volunteer as Tribute!


In its weekend debut, the movie “The Hunger Games,” which is an adaptation of Suzanne Collin’s book came in as the third-best opening till date, surpassing expectations and pulling in $155 million. Hunger Games is a story of love and survival. Set in a future where the Capitol selects a boy and girl from the twelve districts to fight to the death on live television, Katniss Everdeen volunteers to take her younger sister’s (Primrose’s) place for the latest match. One of the tag lines in the movie is the saying of Katniss, where she says “I volunteer! I volunteer as Tribute!”

Come to think of it, as we reflect on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, this saying is not very different from what Jesus Christ, the one who personifies Love, has demonstrated. When God who is Just  required that the soul that sins must die (Ezekiel 18:3), as the tribute of sin is death (Romans 6:23), Jesus volunteered to take the place of every man and woman (Philippians 2:6-7), willingly offering his life for ours (John 10:18). By doing so, Jesus vanquished the devil by his death and resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:26,55). In other words, when God asked, “Who shall be the acceptable sacrifice for sin?”, Jesus stepped in to say, “I volunteer, I volunteer as Tribute!”.

Points to ponder:
Jesus volunteered to give his life so we may live. Can you/I volunteer to give our life to Jesus so that we may live? Are you and I willing to say, “I volunteer, I volunteer as Tribute!”

Philippians 2:5-11 (KJV)
5
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
8And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

John 10:17-18 (KJV)
17 Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.
18 No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

In Biblical terms :: Opportunity Cost


Opportunity Cost according to BusinessDictionary.com is a benefit, profit or value of something that must be given up to  acquire or achieve something else.

The bible counsels us to not give the devil an opportunity (Ephesians 4:27), which in layman’s terms is “If you give the devil a ride,  he will end up driving.”
The opportunity cost of giving the devil an opportunity is extremely high.

Giving the devil an opportunity in our lives will make our lives have no opportunity for the Holy Spirit of God to work in our lives, for God is light (1 John 1:5) and light cannot co-dwell with darkness. It is one or the other.
We must first submit to God so that his light fills our life and subsequently resist the devil who and he will flee from us (James 4:7).

Points to ponder:
Who is driving your life? Who is driving my life?

Ephesians 4:27 (ESV)
27 and give no opportunity to the devil.

Crave and Cry and Burp


As Reuben, our six year old son and I tended to the needs of my beloved wife, Sangeetha, and our two day old son, Ittai Aidan Paul, in the hospital, post delivery, I was observing how Ittai would cry without ceasing with a craving for milk whenever he was hungry and once he was fed, he would be uncomfortable until he was burped. Pondering deeper into such a simple yet natural phenomenon, revealed some deep spiritual insights that we can apply to our Christian walk as well.

Like a baby, we must crave with an unceasing desire for the word of God and not be satisfied till we have had our full until we need to feed on God’s word again (1 Peter 2:2). Jesus himself said, man does not live by bread alone but by every word (not just some words) that proceeds from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4). We must be hungry for the word of God always.  Secondly, when the word of God has been taken into our lives, the unclean things of the world that are trapped in our hearts need to be burped out (James 4:8), for out of the heart comes the wellspring/issues of life (Proverbs 4:23) and Jesus told us that the greatest commandment is for us to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, soul, strength and mind (Luke 10:27).

Points to ponder:
We must not be satisfied until filled with the word of God, craving and crying for it unceasingly.
We must burp out of th things of the world that conflict with God’s ordinances found in his word.

1 Peter 2:2 (KJV)
As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

James 4:8 (KJV)
Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. 

Proverbs 4:23 (KJV)
23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

Gasp for the Breath of Life


As I sat in the operating room awaiting the birth of our second son, Ittai Aidan Paul, the similarilities of physical and spiritual birth dawned on me.

When a child is born in the physical sense, the baby gasps to take in the first breath of life. We are indeed joyous to hear the cry of the baby that results from the intake of the first breath, as the baby is assured into a new world and in a practical sense a new life.

This is not any different than how it ought to be when it comes to our spiritual birth; when one is born again by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ as the Savior of their soul. When one is born again, in Christ, they are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). We must gasp for the breath of life that is found solely in the Holy Spirit of God (John 20:22) and such allegiance could cause us to suffer and cry for his name, but failure to take in that breath of life, who quickens our Spirit (1 Corinthians 15:45), has far greater consequences, than mere tears, in this life and the one to come.

Points to ponder:
Have you been breathed upon with the breath of life? Have you received the Holy Spirit of God who comes when you believe in the name of Jesus? (John 20:22; Ephesians 1:13)

John 20:21-22 (KJV)
21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

Ephesians 1:12-13 (KJV)
12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,