Christmas message from Southeast Asia

160

O Come let us adore Him!

Christmas reminds me of another year of my ministry has ended. The birth of Christ sparks the beginning of my full-time ministry. As I recollect the beginning of my ministry, it is like yesterday – it has just begun. I saw myself full of expectations and energy then, charging straight on like a bull and obviously made lots of blunders. There are sweet and sour, happy and sad, hopeful and disappointed memories over the last 34 years in pastoral ministry. The Lord has been good and faithful. I have grown so are the challenges. It is so soothing to know that during all my successes and failures, He has said that He will never leave nor forsake me. I count it all joy for the privilege to be included as one of His myriad servants.

The world today has changed tremendously and beyond recognition. The Church has and is constantly being challenged by the big 3 – Secularization, Extremism, Globalization. Generally, societies that emphasize on Secularization tends to restrict religious beliefs and activities. On the other hand, societies that hold to Extremism tends to restrict other religious beliefs and activities. Those on Globalization tends to favor religious pluralism and syncretism and restricts traditional faith-based mono-religio beliefs. The Church is a faith-based mono-religio belief, thus, has inevitably become a target of attack all over the globe. What can the Church do?

Jesus was born at a time when his world was supposed to be very religious, under one king, one religion and spoke one language. All these circumstances, supposedly, point to the fact that He has chosen the best time and perfect period to be born and took upon human nature. However, the fact is that He was not accepted and was eventually crucified by His own people. For Him, there was and is no best time or perfect period coming to this world. In other words, every hour and day is the best time and period to visit.

Similarly, every day and time is the best or perfect time to receive Jesus and to worship Him. We should worship and please Him in season and out of season. In fact, the best time to worship Him is when we still have our breath. So said the Psalmist in Psalm 150:6, “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.”    

Specifically, at yuletide, let us come to adore the King of kings, the Lord of lords, Almighty God, personal Saviour who has come at His birth – the first Christmas 2000 years ago, and will be coming again soon. In the book of Revelation 1:7, it was recorded: “Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.”

May the Almighty God remind us to constantly adore our Lord Jesus Christ in season and out of season, in good times and bad times, with good government or bad government, in sickness and in health, in riches and in poorer; let us not depart from your Love, bind us in the fellowship with the Holy Spirit, together with you and the Lord Jesus Christ, one God now and forever. Amen.

The Most Rev Ng Moon Hing, Archbishop and Primate of South East Asia and Bishop of West Malaysia