[The author explains how evil can be reconciled with the existence of God]

Charles Templeton, a well-known evangelist and friend of Billy Graham, renounced his faith. While interviewing him for his book The Case for Faith, Lee Strobel asked him if there was any particular thing that caused him to lose his faith in God. “It was a photo of a woman in Northern Africa (which was then experiencing a drought)”, said Templeton. “She was holding her dead baby in her arms and looking to heaven with a most forlorn expression. I thought, ‘Is it possible to believe that there is a loving and caring Creator when all this woman needed was rain?’” The existence of evil and suffering in the world is a prime reason that atheists give for refusing to believe in the existence of God. In this article, we shall attempt to give a Biblical response to the problem of evil.

Preliminary considerations

The knowledge or experience of any single human is a mere speck compared to the entire spectrum of human experience, and also minuscule compared to God (even those who question God’s existence will agree that if He exists, He must be big!). Therefore, it must not surprise us if we find it difficult to reconcile everything, we observe with our core beliefs. God’s ways and thoughts are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9). In Job chapters 38 and 39, we are reminded that we did not create this universe and we don’t sustain it. As Creator and Sustainer, God knows what He is doing or allowing, even if it stretches our mind. At the same time, God reveals what He does to His prophets (Amos 3:7) and through Jesus Christ. Therefore, we can understand something of God’s ways, including why He has permitted evil.

The Origin of Evil We learn from Genesis 1-3 that when God created the first man and woman, He gave them a commandment. However, they chose to disobey God. They became alienated from God and acquired a tendency to do wrong, which they passed to all their descendants. God judged Adam and Eve just as He had warned them. They would now experience toil, disease, and death. The whole of nature was also cursed when man fell.

Why did God make humans at all?

(So much suffering would be avoided if He didn’t make us) Answer: Because He had a redemption plan that will make the goodness in eternity outweigh the evil.

Why did God give a test to the first humans (and thus allow the possibility of evil)?

There are at least two reasons: One: Without a test, the obedience of our first parents would be “by default”. They would love God only because there was no other alternative. But such love is not true! A truly meaningful, loving relationship is possible only when it is voluntary, that is, the option of rejection is available. God wanted a meaningful relationship with intelligent beings because it brings joy – robots and puppets do not. The same principle also answers the question as to why God does not prevent human evil. If God struck Hitler and Mao dead or manipulated their minds when they were planning the murders, they would be puppets.

Two: The depth of a relationship depends on the extent to which the parties know each other. God’s wonderful attributes such as His grace and transforming power would be completely unknown if there was no evil.

Evil today

If we accept that God did not deliberately bring evil on earth (Adam and Eve did so) but He only allowed it, we still have to deal with present evil. Perhaps three of the most troubling features of present evil are: 2. The creation seems evil and seems to point to an evil creator – the cancer-causing sun that God has made, the earth’s crust that quakes and erupts, and the cruel animals that God made. 3. People seem to be suffering more than they deserve – the person who gets burnt alive in a car accident, the good doctor who dies in a plane crash, etc.

Let us address each of these concerns:

  1. An automated factory is more sophisticated than a factory where everything is done manually on an ad hoc basis. To display His greatness, God has made the universe “automated”. It runs according to fixed laws that He has decreed. The law of gravity will not change when a good person steps on a banana peel, nor will the weather change because there is a sudden need. The processes that make the sun send warm rays to the earth also produce harmful radiation. This constancy of the laws of nature points to God’s consistency and unchanging nature.
  2. After Adam and Eve procreated and the population increased rapidly, people refused to follow their conscience and treat each other well. The whole earth was filled with violence. To prevent the rest of human history from becoming violent anarchy, God had to bring a worldwide flood and start afresh. The earth’s crust cracked open to release water that had been stored beneath it. The cracked crust is now prone to earthquakes and volcanoes. The flood also affected the atmosphere and magnetic field of the earth. Some of the shielding mechanisms that the earth had against harmful sun rays are gone now, and the earth is now more prone to drought. It was not God’s original plan for lions to have brutal fights over territory. Adam and Eve were made the head of the creation. When they fell, creation fell too. On the cursed, post-Flood (and less luxuriant) earth, survival would be more difficult and nature would become cruel. Thus, evil in creation is a distortion due to man’s rebellion, and not God’s original work.
  3. How much do people deserve to suffer? The Bible says that the redemption of a soul is infinitely costly (Psalm 49:7-8). Why? God is infinitely great, holy and good. Therefore, sin against Him is infinitely serious, and thus calls for infinite punishment. This is shocking and frightening, and we are tempted to protest that it is not so. But think about it: how bad would it be to insult an ordinary person? Wouldn’t it be worse to insult the king? Wouldn’t it be worse to insult a good king than a bad king? Now extrapolate this to God! Thus, while our suffering seems great, it is less than what we deserve. When God metes out punishment after we die, He will take into account the suffering we had during our earthly life (Luke 16:25). Thus, the intense suffering on earth does not violate God’s justice.

Mercy in suffering

Here are some more observations we make about some of our sufferings:

  • Childbirth is painful. Although human life is beautiful, it begins with great anguish. Strategically placed suffering like this suggests to the thoughtful person that although life is wonderful, something has gone wrong and needs to be rectified.

Earning one’s living is often hard and painful: In a world where people have a propensity to do evil, work keeps people occupied and thus reduces evil.

We hurt when we touch something hot or sharp: In a world where things go wrong, this kind of pain is a helpful warning signal. Our bodies would be permanently damaged if we couldn’t sense this type of pain. · The quality of life is generally better in countries that have had a deep and lasting influence of the Bible in their heritage. Again, this shows, for those willing to accept it, that the God of the Bible is true, and thus helps them approach Him for their good.

In all the above examples, we see that God’s mercy and grace shine even amid our suffering. He intends to use suffering for our good, drawing us to Him.

Human responsibility

According to SOS-USA, a relief organization, 226 million Africans are starving. Among the causes for the situation are unfair trading practices, corruption and mismanagement of resources, and armed conflict. According to the Drinks Business magazine, in 2018, Americans spent $254 billion on alcohol, and in 2016, $117 billion on tobacco (according to a Wall Street Journal article dated April 23rd, 2017). This means if Americans would give to Africans instead of smoking and drinking, each poor African would get more than $1500 a year – more than enough to come out of starvation. “If you say, “Behold, we did not know this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work?” – Proverbs 24:12. So dear friend, God wants to help the starving children– through you.

According to Patent Pilot, Israel filed 155 (USA: 129) patent applications per million citizens in 2015, which was more than five times the world average.

The Nazis killed six million Jews in World War 2 and Americans aborted more than 46 million babies from 1970 to 2017 (Centers for Disease Control, counting only voluntary reporting). Thus, humans have chosen to kill the most innovative members of their race. So, is God to be blamed because the world has so many unsolved problems? Examples like these can be multiplied. They prove that when we want to blame someone for the evil around us, we should look around, not up.

God’s remedy

God has not just sat back and watched humans do evil. He has sent Jesus Christ to the world as a Savior. Jesus died on the cross for the sins of the world, bearing the punishment that was due for us. If anyone turns around from their rebellion against God and believes in Christ, God will forgive him, and transform him so that he can become part of new heaven and earth in which there will be no evil!

If a person openly preaches Jesus Christ in an Asian village, he will probably be driven away, assaulted or lynched. In the light of such hatred towards God, we should not be surprised that God allows evil, but that He allows good!

To summarize, God created a universe running according to fixed laws and gave man the freedom of choice. Man has brought evil into the world and continues to do evil. Although God has allowed evil, He will judge it. Evildoers will get what they deserve according to His strict standards. The existence of evil does not preclude the existence of a good and powerful God.

By  Johnny Varghese


That still, small voice

When Jezebel in her fury threatened to kill Elijah, he got so overwhelmed; ‘he arose and ran for his life’. He took a day’s journey to the wilderness and prayed a heart-wrenching prayer. 1 Kings 19:4 says, “And he prayed that he might die, and said, “It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!” In just the previous chapter, we read of Elijah’s Mount Carmel victory in the name of the Lord. A battle like no other – Baal’s 450 prophets against one prophet of the Lord. A divinely thrilling conquest is described in 1 Kings 18: 36 onwards. Finally, “Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, “The Lord, He is God! The Lord, He is God! (vs. 39)” Isn’t it hard to keep the emotions inside on reading this text? Such a glorious display of God’s sovereignty!

And yet, Elijah, who knew the power of God and had seen the wonders of it, simply gave up. He just gave up to the extent that he even accepted death. He let his fear take over him. God already knew what was wrong. He sent his angels to care for Elijah, refreshing him with food and drink. He went in the strength of that food for forty days and nights as far as Horeb and hid in the mountain of God.

God knew and yet He asks him with a ‘still small voice’ not in the fire or earthquake – “What are you doing here, Elijah?” We know the voice of the Lord is powerful, as appears by the effect of it; for it works wonders. I love how God’s voice is described here as ‘still small voice’ as compared to how His voice is described in Psalm 29 (vs. 3 to 9). God gently asks Elijah as a father tenderly speaks to his hurt child. You can feel the pain within Elijah as he responds to his heavenly Father, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God of hosts; because the children of Israel have forsaken Your covenant, torn down Your altars, and killed Your prophets with the sword. I alone am left; and they seek to take my life.”

The servant of God had done everything in His power to prove to the children of Israel that God is the Lord of Hosts. He just didn’t seem to understand why his life was being threatened, he felt like he was the only one standing for God, he fled and hid in a cave. But God knew. He knew Elijah was afraid, discouraged and dejected. He knew zealous Elijah had reached the end of the rope…but little did Elijah know that it was only the beginning of hope. Elijah heard God’s still small voice, came out of hiding, stood at the entrance of the cave and listened to God. We read in the following verses as to how God gives him specific directions and instructions on what to do next. God ends with an encouraging statement (19: 18), “Yet I have reserved seven thousand in Israel, all whose knees have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.” Elijah was not alone, there were 7000 in Israel standing tall for God with him! Elijah immediately departs and goes on to do wondrous things for the Lord!

I always used to wonder, if Elijah – God’s chosen prophet – couldn’t handle fear and discouragement – how can I handle it? We may feel discouraged, defeated, dejected by the noise of sin, guilt, fear, failure, exhaustion, anxiety and pain in our lives. We all have those days when we feel like we are in the wilderness, alone and with no strength to carry on. We may feel like taking flight and hiding in a cave away from the painful reality before us. I certainly do. We may not understand why but like Elijah, may we flee to the mountain of God and wait on Him to refresh us with His word, speaking to us in a still, small yet powerful voice assuring us to, “Be still and know that I am God (Ps. 46:10)”.

Amidst all the noise going on in our lives, God whispers in our ears – do we choose to listen or do we drown His voice out in the cacophony of our despair? When we pause to listen, He tenderly and lovingly directs our paths. The sooner we focus our eyes on Him and His power, the quicker we will be released from our fear, self-pity and spiritual exhaustion. “Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass. (Ps 37:5).”

What’s more? God assures us that we are not alone in our suffering, He has provided to us just as he did to Elijah, his own ‘reserved’ people, the church, who are standing with us and by us. They are “rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer (Rom 12:12)” for us “with one accord (Acts 1:14)”. Whatever it is that you are going through today, pause and listen to His still small voice.

By Ruthy Joby Varghese



The Lord created man in His own image and placed him in the Garden of Eden to work it and to keep it. “…God said, Be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the air and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.” Gen 1: 28-29 After the fall of Adam i.e. mankind, God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. Thus, the farming started. His firstborn Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord but God didn’t accept his offering. Jesus spoke many things unto His followers in parables to know the secrets of heaven.

The parable of a sower and the soil is recorded by three gospel writers, Mt 13:3-9, Mk 4:3-8 and Lk 8:5-8. He said, a sower went forth to sow; the seeds fell at four different places. (a) along the way side (b) stony places (c) among thorns (d) good soil. Here the sower is the preacher, the seed is the word of God and soil is heart of the unbelievers. Jesus was preparing the disciples for the preaching work they have to do after his departure, that is the great commission.

He explained them that devil will come like fowl and catch away that was sown in few hearts. The scorching sun means the persecution and the tribulations ariseth after preaching the gospel. Thorns represent the cares of this world which choke the word and make sown seed unfruitful. Like seed sown seed into the good soil, those who hear and receive the word will bear fruit and bring forth hundredfold, sixtyfold and thirtyfold. He also warned about the antagonists of the gospel.

We know the saying, Sow today and Reap tomorrow. Four thing happens when we sow.,

a) One who sows will reap: A farmer plows the soil, waters it and puts the seed with a hope. Yes, he hopes that he will surely reap in future. So, he sows. Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy. Ps 126:6. Apostle Peter preached gospel and three thousand souls were added to their number (Acts 2:41) and again he preached the word, then many believed the word and the number of men was about five thousand. We know God called Simon Peter when he was casting a net into the sea. Jesus said, “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” (Acts 4:18). Philip preached in Samaria. God called Paul (which was Saul’s Gentile name) to preach about Jesus to Gentile people and he did this fearlessly throughout the Roman Empire. He planted many churches in Asia and Europe.

b) Sow some reap few and sow more reap abundantly: Like the seeds that fell on good soil and yielded hundredfold, Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold as the Lord blessed him. God’s desire is for man to increase and flourish. The more we preach the gospel the more souls we can win for Him. We have to enlarge our territories. Regarding a cheerful giver New Testament says: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

c) Same thing will be reaped: Gal 6:7 Whatever one sows he will also reap. but he will reap the same thing. For e.g., if we sow wheat, we will reap wheat itself not rice. Hos 10:12 says Sow for yourselves righteousness and seek the Lord till He rains righteousness upon you. God will open the heavens above and showers down righteousness. If we sow trouble, we will plow iniquity. If we sow injustice, we will reap calamity. Abraham said of Sarah his wife, “she is my sister” Gen 20:2. His son Isaac said of Rebekah his wife, “she is my sister” Gen 26:7. This is a great lesson for parents that whatever we do, our children follow/copy.

d) Don’t sow, Never reap:. Immediate person we recall is the slothful servant who hid the one talent in ground with a handkerchief and returned the same. Master answered him, you wicked and slothful servant. You take what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow. So the Master told to take the one talent from him and give it to the one who has ten talents. The worthless servant was thrown into darkness. (Mt 25:24-30). Jesus said; “Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes and see that the fields are white for harvest. Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together.” Jn 4:35,36. Good sowing is done with confident hope that God will give the harvest! Let us ask the Lord for wisdom, faith and guidance in knowing how to be the best spiritual farmers he wants us to be.


By Sam Valluri



Regular reading of the Bible and meditation of the word of God are indispensable for spiritual growth. Here we need to ask the primary question as to how far we are living according to the word in our daily lives – whether in our homes, or in our relationships with the immediate family members or in the society at large. Some other related ponderable questions are: As Christians, how far are we able to positively influence the people around us? Whether are Christians held in high esteem by people of other religions? Are we honest, law abiding citizens of our nation? Why many Christians are labeled as ‘namesake Christians’? Ultimately, how far can we say that we are having a right relationship with God?

Let us admit the fact that knowingly or unknowingly, we are prone to commit sins, whether they are ‘minor’ sins or ‘major’ sins. No wonder, David cried out to God ‘Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults. Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; Let them not have dominion over me. Then I shall be blameless, And I shall be innocent of great transgression’. ( Ps 19:12,13 NKJV).

We are created in the image of God to glorify Him in our daily lives. God has commanded us to keep His precepts diligently (Psalm 119:4, NKJV). It must be a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path. We must consecrate the word in our hearts so that we become conscious of God and will not sin against God. All the laws and commandments with their interpretations in the Bible are meant for our guidance. East or West, God’s laws and commandments remain absolute. They do not change with culture or times.

The 500th anniversary of the Reformation movement was observed recently. One of the major offshoots of the movement was that Bible was made available in the believers own languages, which helped people to grow in the knowledge of God and His commandments, which has definitely caused transformation of lives. The revival movements in the subsequent centuries can be traced to personal reading of Bible and obedience to God’s ways as given in the scriptures. Thus, individual access to the word rather than depending on the clergymen was a big development. The believers are individually responsible for righteous, godly living. ‘As many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law (for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified’ (Rom 2: 12b-13, NKJV).

It is very necessary that we should not try to read and understand the Bible merely with our intellectual skills. We should meditate on the Bible verses as the Holy Spirit leads us (1 Cor 2: 13-14). The scripture is God-breathed and as such the readers will get enlightenment as the Holy Spirit inspires and guides them. Further, the Holy Spirit enables the believer to walk in the laws and statues of God (Eze 11:19 -20).

Understanding of the scriptures as guided by the Holy Spirit would help us to stay away from interpreting the scriptures to suit the individual needs. It is also necessary that we do not become judgmental, by means of our Bible knowledge. ‘Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not and you shall not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven’, says the word of God (Luke 6:37). ‘Holier than thou’ approach adversely affects our relationship with God and inter personal relationships. Victorious Christian living should be a reflection of our personal relationship with Jesus and that will be possible only when we live according to His word. ‘Jesus said ‘If you love Me, keep My commandments’ (John 14:15). ‘If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed’ (John 8:31). Further, searching the Scriptures will be in vain if one does not have a personal relationship with Jesus (John 5: 39-40). Unless we know Jesus personally, reading of scriptures will be futile and will not pave way for a good witnessing among others. How we hear the Word is equally important. Believers are constantly exposed to umpteen number of sermons and Biblical expositions. Hence, great responsibility is cast to listen to the Word carefully and put it into practice in our lives. We are accountable to God for several messages that we hear. In the parable of the sower, the diverse responses of different types of hearers should be an eye opener to us (Matthew 13:3 – 23).

We have to overcome the crafty designs of the evil one and be faithful to our God. Fruitfulness in Christian life is definitely linked to right hearing of the Word, its proper understanding and wholeheartedly practicing it in our lives. From the Old Testament times, God’s people were warned against spiritual blindness and spiritual deafness. Our Lord was grieved by the fact that His people honored Him with their lips while their hearts were far away from Him. Is it not a hard reality that there are lots of dissension and strife and hypocrisy among Christians such that they are hardly able to impress non Christians with their lives. As we are the salt of the earth and light of the world, we have to positively influence the secular world through our lives and testimonies. This is possible only when we live according to the Word. We can march towards perfection as to our heavenly Father who is perfect, only when we obey His commandments.

In the Bible we find all the signposts for godly practical living. (2 Tim 3:16). A few verses, for example, are listed here: The need for holiness and purity in our lives as we are the temple of God (1 Cor 3:16) ;Victorious Christian living ( 2 Cor 2:14);Imbibing the fruit of the Spirit in our daily lives (Gal 5: 22-23); Overcoming our weaknesses (Philippians 4:13); Offering our lives as living sacrifices to God (Rom 12: 1, 2);Godliness in our conversations (Col 4:6; James 3: 1-12);Warnings against the greed for money. (Mathew 6:24; 1 Tim 6:6); Casting our cares on God and not to worry ( Mathew 6: 25- 34); Sanctity of marriage : (Eph5:22- 33;Heb 13:4); Children and parents Eph 6: 1-4);Loving neighbours Eph 4:32; Right , godly thinking ( Ph. 4:8); etc. Christians have a great responsibility to live according to the word of God. Ignoring this fact can have disastrous consequences- losing the divine privilege of having the fellowship with God. (John13:8).

By George John



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

It is being sounded in the whole world these days: WASH YOUR HANDS, The Lord says, “And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.” (Isaiah 1:15) Though this is a true requirement in the Covid-19 pandemic yet it gives us food for thought for our lives.

Never has the whole world been shut down at the same time as it is today. Don’t you think that this is something extraordinary and that God is telling all mankind something very specific and solemn? The busiest people have been slowed down and shut in that they would ponder and think.

A widow lived with her son and they were poor and did not have enough to eat during a famine. But they were miraculously provided for when she first gave food and shelter to a man of God. Sometime later her son died suddenly and she said to the man of God “.. have you come to me to call my sin to remembrance?” The world today is passing through the valley of death. Fear of death is all around. Is God saying something to this world? Is the world being reminded of its sins? Are your sins being called to your remembrance? What are you going to do about it?

The Lord says, “And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.” (Isaiah 1:15)

Many people have hardened their hearts. Let us consider just one example: the abortions that took place in the world from January 1, 2020 till date are 11,529,167 and continue increasing as you read this article. At an average 45 million babies are aborted every year, the daily rate being 1,25,000 (1.25 lacs). The Corona virus related deaths have been less than 88,000 when this was written. But so many babies in the womb have been just put away and their sufferings have gone to deaf ears. Babies in the womb sucked out piece by piece and ‘crap’ pieces later cleaned out. A doctor advertises himself saying he performed 1200 abortions at the start of his career. In Western countries they call it “Planned Parenthood”. In North India they call it “Cleaning up” in the local language.

“World Health Organization says abortion is “essential service” during pandemic. Women’s choices and rights …. should be respected, irrespective of whether or not she has a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection.”

So where is this crooked world going? Will God be silent forever? Count this as a WAKE UP CALL. It is time for you to introspect and set your life right with God. Come near to Him and He will come near to you. Some are comforting themselves saying, “this too shall pass. There were much more serious pandemics than this centuries ago. After all this is just a virus. We will get the vaccine tomorrow if not today”. But God says, “Cleanse your hands and purify your heart from sin”.

There was a hill called Calvary more than 2000 years ago on which stood a Cross. It was there that The Son of God, born of a Virgin, was Crucified for your sins and mine. On that Cross The Lord Jesus Christ took our punishment and died to set us free from the unbreakable chains of sin. Hung there by three cruel nails, His Precious Blood was shed to cleanse you and me. He rose again the third day from the dead so we may believe that He is God and victorious over death. The motive behind His Great Sacrifice is His Love for you. God loves you and does not desire that you or anyone perish forever in his or her sins.

Be Holy for God is Holy. Believe in the Lord Jesus and you shall be saved and your household. Invite Him in your heart today!

By Deepak Jariwala




We live in the age of internet, artificial intelligence and smart devices, and are constantly bombarded with an overdose of information. Though this explosion of information can be wielded to benefit people, one cannot deny that the easy access to all sorts of input can corrupt innocent minds. In this article, let us look at the addiction that most Christians are unknowingly indulging in and let us prayerfully look at ways to break free with God’s help. The smart phones in our hands give us a round the clock access to a plethora of information that may serve as inputs that will eventually work its way to defile the mind of a righteous person. In the Bible we see how Joseph escaped from Potiphar’s wife who planned and presented the former with an offer that would give him all things that belonged to his master (Read Gen 39:7-12).

The Bible says that she spoke to Joseph day after day and proposition to him the same way the serpent beguiled Eve in the Garden of Eden. She tempted Joseph with the Lust of the eyes, Lust of the flesh and Pride of life, covering all grounds to enable the young man to succumb. However, the Lord was with Joseph and the fear of the Lord kept him from sinning against God and Potiphar. Joseph physically removed himself from the temptation presented to him by fleeing from this master’s wife. But, how is one to flee if the pawn used for tempting sits in our hands or pockets? We are witnessing a steep rise in daily screen time which in turn is positioning our generation to be soft targets of the enemy. The screen addiction not only corrupts our minds but also keeps us away from the only cure to this addiction – the Word of God. If you are a phone/technology addict, below are a few ways that can help break free. ·

Pray: Ask God to strengthen you to choose Godliness over worldliness. Also, to instil in you love for the Written Word (Bible) and the Living Word (Jesus). ·

Word of God: Psalm 119:9 says, Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word. Yes, the Word of God has the power to convict and cleanse us. Discipline yourself to read the Bible several times a day at preset timings. (A daily reading plan can help with this.) ·

Phone detox: Make it a point not to carry your phone around with you when you are at home. Also fix time to check messages and social media. A successful phone detox includes turning off all social media notifications. The time that is saved by keeping aside the phone can be utilised to dig deep into the Word.

Sin and Slavery: If we fail to check this (any) addiction which on the outside looks very harmless, it is most likely that our thought life will be compromised. This in turn will provoke the addict to convert his/her thoughts into actions leading the person to wander away from God into the clutches of sin. Once a person is gripped in sin, (s)he is a slave to the same. Galatians 5:1 says, It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

In his letter to the Romans, Apostle Paul compared the slavery to sin with the Roman slave market. In ancient Rome, the number of slaves a person owned was equated to his standing in the society. Slaves were bought and sold as commodities. It is shocking to know that slaves were rented out for a set period of time, and second hand slaves were also sold in the market. A slave had no rights whatsoever. He/she had to do anything that was commanded by  his/her master. Men, women and even children were showcased in the market for the wealthy to assess, bargain and buy. Whenever a slave(s) was put up for sale, a spear was erected on the ground or on a pedestal to let people know that the slave sale had begun.

A slave seen under the spear would be the slave up for sale. The spear is a sign that notifies passers-by that slaves are being sold under public authority. The Bible says in Romans 6:20, that we were slaves to sin; which means that we had a master – the devil. We had no rights and we were to blindly obey that master. Our situation was no different from that of a slave in the Roman slave market – gruesome. In Romans 7:14, Paul states that he was sold under sin. Sin in a person is the sign that he is up for sale in Satan’s slave market (sold under sin) just as the spear was a sign in the Roman slave market (sold under spear).

The only way to break free from the bondage of sin is to receive Jesus as master and saviour. It is only the blood of Christ that can cleanse us from all our sin. The precious blood of Jesus (once we believe) redeems us from the clutches of the devil. Once we are purchased possessions of our Lord Jesus Christ, we are no longer slaves of sin but of righteousness. We are set free from the bondage that we were in and Jesus has paid in full to redeem (buy back) us out of the hand of the enemy. Dear friend, If you are still a slave of sin or any kind of addiction, turn to the Saviour – Our Lord Jesus Christ. Call upon His name and he will deliver you (Joel 2:32). Once you are free from the clutches of the evil one – declare your freedom with the word of your mouth (Psalm 107:2). Also, be vigilant so you are not drawn away and enticed by your own lust (James 1:14) – this will require you to watch the inputs you feed your mind.

By Sheba Franklin



The name Abigail means “Her father’s joy” or “fountain of joy”. The story of Abigail and her husband is found in 1 Samuel ch 25 “Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. “Proverbs 31:30 Abigail had both beauty and understanding. She feared God which is evident in all her dealings and actions. Abigail was the wife of a very rich man named Nabal. Nabal means “fool” or “senseless”. He was of the house of Caleb and had great possessions which included three thousand sheep and three thousand goats. He was from Carmel which was a town near Maon. “Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. “Proverbs 31:30 David and his men had gone to the Wilderness of Paran, probably to get away from King Saul. One day David sent some of his men to Nabal to ask him for a gift of food and water in return for the protection they had given to Nabal. Nabal being the kind of man that he was answered David’s men rudely. He made it clear that he was unwilling to share any of his provisions with David’s men.

David was angry and sent 400 of his men to punish Nabal and his household. Nabal’s beautiful and discreet wife Abigail learned of the plight of her husband and the plot by David to kill the entire household of Nabal. Abigail wasted no time and got food ready to take to David and his men. She got ready a feast fit for a king..200 loaves of bread, 2 bottles of wine, 5 sheep ready dressed, 5 measures of parched corn, a hundred clusters of raisins and two hundred cakes of figs. Abigail sent her servant ahead of her and she followed. When she saw David, she lighted off the ass, fell before David on her face and bowed herself to the ground, and took upon herself the iniquity of her husband and asked for forgiveness. To make a long story short, David not only forgave her but also received the food that she had brought and turned away from his plan of destroying Nabal and his household.

Abigail had acted on her own but now the time had come for her to tell her husband. However, Nabal was busy with a feast in his house and he was very drunk. She told him about David the next morning when the effects of the wine had gone out of him. When Nabal heard about what David intended to do, his heart became like a stone. The scriptures tell us that 10 days later the Lord smote him. Very soon David asked Abigail to become his wife and she readily agreed.

This is a very interesting story but there are valuable lessons to learn from Abigail:

  1. She was a woman of good understanding. “As a jewel of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman without understanding. “Proverbs 11:22. Because of her wisdom and understanding she was able to act quickly and prevent the destruction of her household. 2. When the young man told Abigail about David’s intentions to kill Nabal and his household, she wasted no time.
  2. 1 Samuel 25:18 says that Abigail made haste to prepare a sumptuous meal for David and his men and thus appeased the anger of David. “A prudent man (or woman) foresees evil …” Proverbs 27:12 3. She took the iniquity of her husband on herself. “Upon me my Lord, upon me let this iniquity be.” 1 Samuel 25:24. Abigail reminds us of Moses in Exodus 32:32 which says. “Yet now if thou will forgive their sin and if not blot me, I pray thee out of thy book which thou has written.” 4. I have wondered about what kind of marriage Abigail had with Nabal. She was a woman of great understanding and her husband was rude, mean and evil in his ways. She still cared about Nabal and therefore she took that quick action of saving Nabal and his household. She did not walk out of her marriage but God in His time smote Nabal and Abigail became David’s wife. 5. Abigail’s great humility is noteworthy. In 1 Samuel 25:23,24 we read that she fell before David on her face and bowed to the ground. We also see her humility when David asked her to be his wife. “ And she arose and bowed herself on her face to the earth and said , Behold let thy handmaid be a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my Lord .” 1 Samuel 25:41 God exalted Abigail and she became the wife of the future king of Israel. In life’s difficult and fearful situations, we can ask God for wisdom to do the right things. And after having done our best, we can wait for God to bring about deliverance just as He did for Abigail.

By Mercy Samuel



Eagles are one of the largest birds and admired the world over as a living symbol of power, freedom, and transcendence. Four distinct species of eagles have been noticed in Palestine, so it is no surprise that the writers of Scripture were inspired to use them to portray strength, power, vision, and even destruction. Eagles are proficient flyers. They can climb high into the air and swoop down on prey at incredible speed. They regulate the speed of their flight just by altering the position of its huge wing. The hollow bones, large and strong flight muscle and well aerated layers of feather are body designs that make them skillful flyers. In his eulogy to Saul and Jonathan, David describes them as mighty warriors swifter than eagle and stronger than lions (2 Samuel 1.23). King Solomon personifies transiency of worldly riches to the flight of an eagle in Proverbs 23.5.

‘Eagle-eyed’ is an adjective in English language to represent keen sight and vigilance. The most efficient and prominent sense of an eagle is its vision. Lateral position, anatomical features, large number of cone cells and large size of the eyes are some of the remarkable characteristics that impart enhanced perception and long distant sight to this bird of prey. God, while confronting Job, displayed before him the wisdom with which He designed and prepare each creature for its unique mode of living (Job 39. 27-29). The flying skill and sharp vision of eagle are two prominent features that make them expert hunters. An eagle swooping down towards its prey is a picture of destruction. Devastation that was to come upon the Jews was foretold using the illustration of eagle (Jeremiah 48. 40-41; Jeremiah 49. 22; Deuteronomy 28.49; Hosea 8.1).

Eagles not only fly high but also build their nest on Rocky cliff / Tree Tops, for the reasons of better vision, protection of eggs and open flight path. Bible addresses man’s insatiable greed for worldly success or man’s pride through the illustration of eagle’s nest (Jeremiah 49. 16). Eagles also exhibit a stage of molting that lasts for about 150 days wherein it loses its old feather and get replaced with new ones. This restoration is compared to the Holy Spirit’s renewal in a believer’s heart (Psalm 103.5).

Another remarkable characteristic of the eagle is its tenderness toward its young. No member of the bird family is more gentle and attentive in watching over its young. It builds its nest high up on a mountain crag. Both parents bring food to the little eaglets, and when they teach them to fly, both parents are involved in the training. As the little one takes off from that dizzy height and attempts to follow its parent in flight, the eagle swoops beneath it and bears the little one on its wings when he seems exhausted. ‘Bore you on eagles’ wings’ in Exodus 19.4 is a graceful expression of the Lord’s fatherly compassion to His own children (Deuteronomy 32:10,11) and the salvation He provided through the blood of His beloved Son Jesus Christ.

Eagles generally build their next on rock cliff, which offers a view of the world below. It is therefore an important aspect for believers to build their lives on the Rock (Lord Jesus Christ) and seeing the world below and not being not attracted to the pleasures it offers.

By Dr. Lizby Anu Mathews

Taken from Harvest Times April 2020 Edition