行善來自「老我」還是「新人」Good deeds from old self or new creation

John Wen, 2/25/2010

In Taiwan, people traditionally worship gods due to depending on the sea for livelihoods in early years and suffering losses from frequent natural calamities.

Since Taiwan has become a well off country, the tradition is carried on with amplification of various gods leading to the worldwide Buddhist HQ Mountain (佛光山), and later on to the famous charity organization Tzu Chi (慈濟會) just as said in Romans 1:23. However, Taiwanese inherited Chinese traditional culture virtues which are basically God centered; not like Romans, godless and pursuing personal glory. So, Taiwanese society in general did not fall into the traps described in Romans 1:24-32.

The Bible’s saying about God is true that we can know invisible God from the clearly seen creation of the world. But for many Taiwanese they are blinded, became futile in their thoughts and their senseless hearts darkened by years of worshiping idols (Rom 1:20-21). But how then shall they worship God whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?(Rom 10:14) 然而,人未曾信他,怎能求他呢?未曾聽見他,怎能信他呢?

So as we embark on Taiwan mission, be mindful of local peoples’ devotion to their gods and respect their good deeds. As schools incorporate our VBS programs into their formal curriculums, all school teachers will present in the classes. That’s good or bad. The good is that all classes will be well displined. The bad is their suspicion or even outright objection to our teaching on God in the classes, since majority of them are members of Tzu Chi (慈濟會).

But, no fear, for God did not give us a Spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control/ sound mind (2 Tim 1:7). 因為神賜給我們,不是膽怯的心,乃是剛強、仁愛、謹守的心。This actually is an EV opportunity first time ever for them. For that I prepare the following brief of our faith for your praying whenever answering their questions about our God.

神愛我們的大愛 :

  1. 神賜我們從死在過犯中, 活過來的恩典成了新人, 與復活的主耶穌在( 2:4 -3:21)          

 2. 使我們與神和好, 與人和睦, 成了耶穌的善行, 不是自誇的行為, 出於神的愛 

 3. 藉著主耶穌人死傳的和平福音, 我們同感聖靈而得以神面前.

Those unique points of our faith are quite different from theirs.  Especially, we, new creatures in Jesus, become His good deeds for loving people with His power.  For that He carried our pains, was crushed because of our sins and died to redeem us.  He resurrected later from death for our eternal life, now a living God forever with us in our hearts and heaven, not those lifeless idols they are so bonded to.  And He shall return to reign with us in a new heaven and a new earth.

With that in mind we don’t fall into stupid and senseless arguments which will produce quarrels with them. But, we, as Lord’s servants, must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged.  Perhaps God will grant them repentance and then knowledge of the truthand they will come to their senses and escape the devil’s trap where they are held captive. “然而主的僕人不可爭競,只要溫溫和和地待眾人,善於教導,存心忍耐,用溫柔勸戒那抵擋的人;或者神給他們悔改的心,可以明白真道,叫他們這已經被魔鬼任意擄去的,可以醒悟,脫離他的網羅” (2 Tim 2:23-26) 。

As a final note, let our light shine before men, that they may see our good deeds and praise our Father in heaven (Matt 5:16).  We “overcome devils by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of our testimony” (Rev 12:11).  “弟兄勝過他,是因羔羊的血和自己所見證的道”。

慈濟會簡介:

慈濟基金會, http://www.tzuchi.org.tw

1966年證嚴上人於台灣花蓮,以克己、克勤、克儉、克難的精神創立慈濟,初期由六位同修弟子,每人每天增產一雙嬰兒鞋,三十位家庭主婦每天省下五角錢,投入竹筒裡,開始慈善濟貧的工作。

四十幾年來,慈濟的志業,由慈善而醫療、教育、人文;從偏遠的花蓮一隅開展至全球五大洲,已有四十七個國家設有分支會或聯絡處,迄今援助過六十九個國家,慈濟人以感恩心,付出無所求,為每一位受難者真誠關懷與膚慰。

慈濟十戒(2009年2月06日)

一、不殺生                                             六、不抽煙、不吸毒、不嚼檳榔
二、不偷盜                                             七、不賭博、不投機取巧
三、不邪淫                                             八、孝順父母、調和聲色
四、不妄語                                             九、遵守交通規則
五、不飲酒                                             十、不參與政治活動、示威遊行

「慈濟十戒」是慈濟人的根本戒,缺一不可。上人慈示:「人間紊亂乃因不守戒律,喪失心靈道理,致人倫失序。每個人都有責任要保護好自己的身體、家庭、社會,要做到這分責任,須從自己守好規矩開始。而慈濟十戒亦是個人明哲保身之道。」凡慈濟委員、慈誠隊員等正式參與慈濟團體的慈濟人,都必須遵守虔持,保護身心的健康,做一個踏踏實實的慈濟人。

  1. 信仰不同宗教的慈濟人

(http://www.tzuchi.org.tw/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=297%3A2008-12-19-07-52-57&catid=81%3Atzuchi-about&Itemid=198&lang=zh)

證嚴上人常鼓勵信仰不同宗教的慈濟人,要對自己的信仰忠實;這和做慈濟兩者之間,可以並行而不悖,都是端正自己心念、行為,並對他人無所求付出。因「信人有愛」、「克己復禮」、「愛灑人間」的信念行善,相信每個人皆有不忍眾生受苦的愛心,慈濟人方能廣邀不同宗教與文化的人,加入淨化人心、救苦救難的行列。許多外籍慈濟志工也發現,做慈濟不但不會動搖原有的宗教信仰,反而因為關懷他人、克制私欲,讓自己的思想與言行,更實踐原來信仰的要求、更貼近親人教友眼中「虔誠信徒的形象」。

再次的提醒了我們雅各所言:「信心若沒有行為就是死的」。但我們行善的愛心是因基督而有根有基(3:17),  不是自恃的「信人有愛」。且靠聖靈行善靠聖靈得生(

5:25), 而不是「克己復禮」、出於自克制。信耶穌不是為了「虔誠信徒的形象」

, 在於行公義、好憐憫、存謙卑的心、與神同行(6:8)。我們要「愛灑人間」,

要「灑」神永遠的大愛,揚「所盼望的福」( 2:13)

基本上, 我們在基督裏成了「新人」而行善, 慈濟人「克己」行善。我們得救是本乎

恩、也因著信; 慈濟人不講赦罪及救贖, 就不知永生也沒有榮耀的盼望。

因此, 慈濟人傳福音: 神的大愛愛他們、信靠神大能行善、活出永生的喜樂

的恩召有何等指望、在聖徒中得的基業、有何等豐盛的榮耀(1:17-22)

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