A Plumb Line Cornerstone

As a young boy growing up in rural America, I was around a lot of building projects. Though I couldn’t do much, I’d carry things around the site, help hold a board, or a tool, or take measurements. Occasionally, I got to pound some nails.

Sometimes I’d get to hold or check the plumb line. This simple yet remarkable instrument was used to ensure a vertical line was ‘true’ or plumb. It was employed to make sure what you built wasn’t crooked; that, as the structure grew taller, it wouldn’t topple nor resemble a ‘Tower of Pizza’ (oops, Pisa – effect of being quarantined for too long!).

‘For these seven rejoice to see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel, They are the eyes of the Lord which scan to and fro throughout the whole earth.’ Zechariah 4:10

The Holy Spirit inspired Zechariah to prophesy to the Children of Israel to take courage and rebuild the temple after they returned from Babylonian captivity. As he does, his vision grows beyond their present predicament. He had much to say about the coming of the Messiah, and the End Times. Chris Berglund is among God’s servants who has prophesied the significance of the book of Zechariah to our church in this season.

Whenever Jesus is about to build, He drops a plumb line. It’s a sign that He must test us first. Are we well-aligned (plumb)? Can we bear weight? Like a Chief Architect or Inspector, He needs to assure that the structures we’ve built for Him will support the awesome things He’s about to do on earth.

This pandemic has been a divinely-orchestrated separator – a plumb line. God’s eyes are scanning to and fro to see who’ll ‘pass inspection’, and qualify to build His house to the next level. Some clearly will be found wanting. Beloved, we must not respond in fear and disqualify ourselves; God is looking for faith (Luke 18:8). We must not be preoccupied with other distractions like the foolish virgins who were caught without oil in their lamps. We’d all do well to ‘buy for yourselves’ while we still can! (Matthew 25:9).

We also don’t want to be like those who merely make God their refuge – appealing to Him for shelter, protection, and salvation. This ‘save me’ attitude may qualify people for Heaven, but it’s not the character of the ones the Lord of Hosts is looking for to align with Him as great battle lines are being drawn up at the End of the Age.

Tragically, many Christians around the world have inherited a weak spiritual disposition because the emphasis of the Church’s message has been on what we’re being saved from (Hell), rather than what we’re being saved for (Kingdom)! We’ve worked hard to get people saved, then fed them milk week after week. We’ve raised toddlers when God has need of warriors. A steady diet of the ‘Grace Message’, self-help sermons or the ‘Prosperity Gospel’ will not produce people ‘useful for the Master’ (2 Timothy 2:21).

If we’re going to conform to the King’s will in these end times, we’ve to change our mindsets to be like our father Abraham’s. Though he had never seen warfare, he trained all 318 servants in his household to fight in times of peace (Genesis 14:14). Though unlikely champions, these herders, gardeners, cooks and dishwashers defeated four fierce and experienced foreign armies to deliver Lot and his entire family from certain death.

Many things we’re doing show that we too have Abraham’s blood running through our veins. Whether it be through serving hungry taxi drivers, or providing cards, food, and health supplies to foreign workers in the dorms, we’re reaching beyond ourselves. Each week, testimonies with pictures of hundreds of families being fed through our CGN churches also reveal that we, as a people and tribe, are hearing the call to not only be safe, but to save; not just to stay healthy, but to heal.

God will have an end-time army. When the plumb line is dropped, a people – through and upon whom He can build His Kingdom – will arise. Our goal is to make sure that we all ‘pass inspection’ and qualify for the exciting things God is about to do.


Pastor Kevin Graves

The Pain of God

We’re already at the halfway mark of an unprecedented year – a year that nobody in their wildest dreams would have imagined playing out the way it has. Prophets in days past had given us inklings of such probable scenarios, yet the suddenness and magnitude of the devastation which ushered in this new decade was beyond human imagination and comprehension.

The shakings prophesied in the book of Hebrews certainly made a tumultuous entrance with a global bang, shaking everything that could be shaken, and violently!

Thus, it was with a sober spirit that I earnestly pursued the Father’s heart during the 50 days between Passover and Pentecost, inquiring of Him with an expectant heart and open ears. And He graciously revealed not just His plans, but a facet of His heart which took me by surprise. I read more…

Convenient Christianity?

In this ‘new normal’ of the post-Covid 19 era, companies, organisations, and churches must rethink their strategies and reinvent themselves from being a ‘physical organisation with digital presence’ to a ‘digital organisation with physical expressions and locations’. We’re very grateful that our weekday programmes featured on our social media platforms, our online teaching classes, and weekend services have reached people and places far and wide.

Now, with most things being accessible online and on-demand, I can have them delivered to me without leaving home, whenever I want it. But herein lies my concern – the ‘Oh, so convenient’, on-demand, instant gratification mentality.

I’ve not heard of anyone who changed their world (secular or sacred) and impacted their generation by living a ‘convenient life’. All paid a high price to see their dreams, visions, and burdens come to pass.

Imagine waking read more…

Happy 25th Anniversary!

Andy Goh is a pilot who has been in Cornerstone for many years. This week, he posted on his Facebook page a bulletin from the church dated Dec 10, 1995. That brought back so many sweet memories. I love that he has kept this for over 25 years and, if you want to buy it, I hear he is selling it at $10,000. Good buy! Mint condition. 
 
I recall in those days, our bulletins were photocopied, our songs were projected on an overhead projector, and we all had funny haircuts and wore strange clothes. Who could forget the bright and loud fuchsia pink and yellow blazers our ushers donned while proudly serving? But what was so timely was, just a few days ago, we quietly crossed our 25 years as a church. June 2, 1995 was the read more…

Radical Discipleship

Recently, while reading the Acts of the Apostles and preparing to teach a class on it, two characters in the book caught my attention – Stephen, the first martyr of the New Testament Church, and the Evangelist Philip (not to be conflated with the Apostle Philip) were not part of the apostolic leadership. Some may even argue that they’re peripheral to the main narrative of the Book of Acts. Yet their significant acts left a deep impact on my heart.

Stephen was described as being full of faith, power, and the Holy Spirit. He did great wonders and signs among the people. The men who opposed him were not able to resist the wisdom and the anointing by which he spoke. They were cut to the heart as Stephen preached, Saul being one of them. As they stoned him, the read more…

A Mind-Blowing Truth

It seems so easy to gloss over the weightiness of Scriptures because we’ve become so familiar in our Christian walk. I think one Scripture deserves much more attention from all of us.

“To Him Who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.” Rev 1:5-6

With one and half verses and 37 words, John the Revelator postulates something so profound and earth-shaking (I don’t mean to exaggerate here, but I mean it earnestly).
 
Consider the magnitude of what Christ has done for us here:
 
He loved us.
He washed us from our sins.
He washed us with His own blood.
He elevated us to become read more…

Words of Truth

I’ve heard this said, “Don’t mix your words with your mood, you can change your mood but you can’t take back your words.”

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recently complimented our Prime Minister for controlling the Covid-19 situation effectively. It said his words turned out to be meaningful compared to other leaders. Two months after his first speech, we got over some huge bumps in the ‘controlled’ environment.

He communicated the situation to Singaporeans and I don’t think they’ve an easy job manoeuvring through some of the landmines. But what was key was their commitment to communicate, to keep the country in a state of peace and security amid uncertainties.

Our Lord Jesus was a master communicator and people were always amazed at His authority, power, and insights. His words evoked mental and emotional read more…

Caves of Hope

“David… escaped to the cave of Adullam.” 1 Sam 22:1

While you may not necessarily think so at the moment, staying home for a few weeks may not be so bad. Consider 3,000 years ago, David was involuntarily quarantined in a cave called Adullam. Now, a cave is not a very inviting nor desirous habitat. The indoor plumbing is horrendous. Beds are rock hard. Even a 2-watt bulb would be cause for celebration. Your wife will definitely not like the kitchen. And, no Netflix.

Still, if you plan to be there for long, you ought to head over to the stores to pick up a broom, mop, and a few supplies to make your cave a bit more homey. Put a few pictures up on the walls (if you can figure out how!) You shouldn’t have to walk far to read more…

Fulfilling The Great Commission Amidst Covid-19

For the past 10 years, our Couriers short-term missions programme would’ve been launched around this time to send our people out to the nations. Without fail, God always shows up in wondrous ways as they go – thousands are saved, healed, and blessed. Our Couriers volunteers come back rejoicing and transformed!

However, the Great Commission is not just an annual short-term missions programme. If that was our perspective and endpoint of missions, we’d have greatly failed. The Great Commission is Jesus’ final commandment to His disciples to “go and make disciples of all nations” (Matt 28:16-20). Mission opportunities abound around us while we’re homemaking, working, commuting, etc, in Singapore or anywhere in the world. It’s to be our daily mission.

There’s a greater urgency for The Great Commission in the COVID-19 global pandemic. Many people read more…

The Key Is In The ‘Beginning’

If you’re like me during this ‘Circuit Breaker’ lock-in with young children, you start your day early with your morning devotions and emerge full of faith and grace. Then, when the clock strikes 8am, the first giant called ‘Home-Based Learning (HBL)’ is unleashed, followed by the second giant called ‘Work From Home (WFH)’ at 9am.

As the day wears on, these giants often end up fighting each other, competing for the trophy called ‘Wi-Fi connectivity’, with the winner enjoying smooth and seamless video conference calls and online streaming.

If you and your spouse are working, there’ll be this internal struggle within you – “Whose job is more important?”, so that the one with the ‘less important’ job will have to fight that HBL giant and rescue the helpless child. When it’s lunch-time, you think it was just read more…

’Ritardando’* Time

2020 began with a bang for me. On the first day of the New Year, I was caught on camera for speeding and slapped with a hefty fine and demerit points for failing to conform to a red light signal. The traffic light had just turned amber and I had thought I could make it across at my current speed. I was wrong! It wasn’t the happiest way to start the year, but I felt that the Lord was teaching me some precious lessons in preparation for the coming days of peril. 

Slow Down to Stop

For those like me who need a refresher course, amber means slow down and prepare to stop! Period. 

One of the characteristics of modern life is that of ever-increasing speed. Let’s be honest; even during this period of quarantine and enforced rest, it’s still very read more…

Unprecedented

In all my life as a believer, I’ve never seen what I’m witnessing right now – this Covid-19 crisis is certainly setting the Church up for the ‘Return of the King’!

Everywhere in the world, there’s a spiritual awakening. It’s unprecedented. Various ministries are launching major global prayer initiatives, and seers are exploding with incredible visions. I believe this growing crescendo is building up to that one moment where we’ll see the spark light up a massive global revival. Yup, the day we’ve all been speaking about is now here. It has come!
 
For starters, this week we celebrate Passover on Apr 8. It’s epic. For the first time in 2,000 years, Passover 2020 will be celebrated the way they did on the 1st Passover evening in Egypt, in family units. I find this remarkable. In the read more…

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