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Scottish Community Centre

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Vancouver, BC


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Vancouver, BC

V6P 6G5


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That Dreaded ‘S’ Word 1 John 1:5-2:2
Written by John Tsang   
Monday, 18 May 2015 20:19

I think that we all agree that sin is a tough topic to bring up in a conversation nowadays. The general lack of regard for authority structures combined with the predominant view of relativism make the notion of sin against a holy God somewhat difficult to grasp. We are not alone. The intended audience of John’s Epistle also had similar challenges against the Biblical notion of sin.


John began this section with a metaphorical image of the nature of God, “God is light and in Him; there is no darkness.” (1:5) John relied on the Gospel (John 1:4, 3:19-21, 8:12), for an explanation of light and darkness, and the Gospel of John relied on the Old Testament for the meaning, "God is light"(Gen 1:4, Ps 27:1, 118:27, Isa 60:19). Essentially, right at the outset of this section about sin, John reminded us that it is about the nature of God and much deeper than a list of do’s and don’ts.


The first claim that John had to correct was that you can have fellowship with God while you continue to walk in darkness (1.6-7). Walking in darkness implies a life of habitual sin. This is a lie. Living in darkness blocks one's relationship with God. We are to strive toward living in a way that is transparent, honest, sincere and open to God and others.


Last Updated on Monday, 18 May 2015 20:27
That Which We Have Seen, Heard, and Touched 1 John 1:1-4
Written by John Tsang   
Monday, 11 May 2015 20:54

We began our study of the book of 1 John this past Sunday. The central theme of this Epistle can be summed up in 1 John 4:10, "This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." As we reflect on this year's theme, Loving God With All of Our Hearts, 1 John reminds us to grasp God's immeasurable love for us first.


The opening few verses of 1 John is reminiscent of John's other work, the Gospel of John. While John focused on the divinity of Jesus Christ in the Gospel, in 1 John, the focus is on the humanity of Jesus Christ. John used words like “seen, heard, and touched” to testify to the physical reality of Jesus Christ. 1 John is a 'down to earth' Epistle with an emphasis on themes for the Christian life such as sin, forgiveness, loving others, true fellowship, and the test of genuine faith.


Last Updated on Monday, 11 May 2015 21:04
Who's the Best Kind of Missionary? Acts 7-8
Written by John Tsang   
Tuesday, 05 May 2015 05:22

Some of you are aware of the TV miniseries, A.D.: The Bible Continues. This miniseries is produced by the same people as The Bible and tells the story of the Early Church from the resurrection of Jesus to the first ten chapters of Acts. On Sunday night, I caught the last 10 minutes of the episode called, The First Martyr, the story of the stoning of Stephen. I was reminded of the sermon earlier that morning.


Our speaker took us on a reflection on the kind of people that God uses to bring the saving message of the Gospel to the world. God can use the ‘homeboy’, the castoff, and the refugee as missionaries to the unreached peoples. Both Moses's and Stephen's heritage allowed them to connect with the Jewish people. Christ became a human being to identify with us. Yet Moses, Jesus, and Stephen in some way were rejected by their own people and were seen as castoffs. Those who are refugees, simply defined as individuals who have no place to call home, are suited to be missionaries in unique ways. Perhaps it is the transient and mobile nature of refugees or migrants that enables them to be particularly effective in transmitting the Gospel to others. So whether you feel like an insider, a castoff, or someone who doesn't quite feel at home anywhere, God can use your circumstances for the furtherance of the kingdom.


Last Updated on Saturday, 09 May 2015 09:15
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