Sharpening iron

We had a very interesting session in the church last Sunday. Ko Joni (for you who didn’t know him, he is an SBC student who is ministering in CLPC) is having an assignment to do a session on counseling for his course. So he asked us to do it after church instead of the usual bible study class. He did it along with his classmate Mrs. Debora (I hope I spelled her name correctly), with a focus on parenting.

The presentation itself, to be honest, was a little bit cramped here and there. There are too many information to process and a little too academic for a two-hour session. But having a 16 weeks course converted into a two-hour session is, of course, destined to go that way. Having said all that, I felt more blessed and satisfied than not. Ko Joni’s sharing on his own family were very touching and, I guess, those sharing were the real example on why we need to be more careful with our way of living, especially when other lives are involved.

I guess it does not limit the importance to parents, but also us as a community of believers. We can’t ignore the fact that some brothers and sisters are more mature in one aspect or another, and more often than not, these brothers and sisters are going to be an example to other believers. How we behave will indirectly affect their development as well. Now, it may not be as significant as parents, or PKTB or pastors, but I believe that we have the power to alter someone life and I do think that Jesus wants us to sharpen each other like iron is being sharpened by another.

On the surprising side, we did two tests: ISE and ISS, which are tests on Self Esteem and Self Shame. I scored 70 and 71 out of 100 respectively – a very high result compared to the others who stays around 30 to 50. They said that the higher it is the lower self-esteem I have or the bigger the self-shame that I put on myself. The healthy mark is 30, 100 being the worst. I stand at the apex of the church members with 141 points on aggregate. Cool.

Nobody believed. =.=’

Mark 13 - Part 2

Ok… Back to Mark 13

We left off last time as Jesus warned the disciples of the persecutions that lie in wait for them. The next things that Jesus said were this:

  1. The appearance of “Abomination of desolation” standing where he shouldn’t be (14)
  2. Run to the mountains when that happens, immediately (14-16)
  3. Pray that it will not happen in bad timing (17-18)
  4. The tribulation will be like nothing ever seen before (19)
  5. If the Lord does not cut it short, all will perish (20)
  6. Appearance of false prophets, christs, and signs (21-22)
  7. Be on guard since He has said that beforehand (23)

If Jesus was referring to the end of times, then most likely He is talking about the tribulation (and hence, pre-millennialism view). Verses 14-18 will means that someone can do something to avoid (or at least, lessen) the effect of the tribulation, and it would be detrimental if someone have his or her focus on something else, as they will most likely fall on the tribulations. The tribulations will be the worse the world has ever seen (worse than the signs in Signs 1) but God will make it short for the sake of the elect. Hence we, as those elect, must be on guard.

It is also possible, however, if Jesus was referring to the historical destruction of the temple. The “Abomination of desolation” refers to Daniel 9:27 and 11:31. The words “let the readers understand” (verse 14) is not a remark from Mark but a remark from Jesus, saying to the disciple to recognize what Daniel meant. If it is so, then Jesus is telling the disciple to be on guard and flee from Jerusalem when the “Abomination of desolation” is standing where he shouldn’t be, as the tribulation will be great on them if they stay.

In actual, this is what happened back before the temple was destroyed by Titus. In 67-68 A.D. Jewish fanatics occupied the temple, and they allowed people who had committed crimes to roam freely in the holy of holies, even those who had committed murder. They even committed sins inside the holy of holies. The apex of the monstrosity was when they elected Phanni as a high priest – and it was said that he was a clown. Jesus is giving them an escape plan: They are to flee to the hills as the Romans will pillage Jerusalem, they are to flee hastily (the rooftop in that time was flat, and it is such a way that you can run to the city wall from the rooftop), pray that it will not be in winter as the roads will not be passable, and not on Sabbath as the gates will be closed. The Christians actually follow these instructions under the leadership of Symeon (a cousin of Jesus) where they flee to Pella in Pyrea, in the hills east of Sea of Galilee. It was said by Josephus that no Christian died on the holocaust.

(In fact, there is another event which is regarded as an appearance of “Abomination of desolation” by the Jews. It happens before the times of Jesus in 168 BC when Antiochus Ephipanes slaughtered 40000 Jews in the temple, sacrificed a pig on the altar, sprinkling the blood on the holy ground deliberately and put a statue of Zeus in the altar. At the times of Jesus, all Jews knew about this and they can be really scared when Jesus said that the next will be worse)

Again, we can’t determine the context of the text, whether it is only on the end of times or end of the temple, or both. Let us just say these points as “Signs 3: Tribulations”

Jesus continues by saying:

  1. About how the Son of Man will return after the tribulations (24-26)
  2. The elect shall be gathered from everywhere (27)
  3. Again, to be ready as they know what will happen when it is near (28-29)
  4. This generation will not pass away until all these things pass away (30)
  5. Jesus’ words will ever be true (31)
  6. Regarding the time of the second coming, only the Father knows (32)
  7. Again, be on guard (33-37)

Let us say that these signs are “Signs 4: Second Coming”. Now, we all know that Jesus did not come when the temple was destroyed. However it does not mean that Jesus is not talking about the destruction of the temple. On the contrary, if Jesus is talking about the end of times all the while, the saying of verse 30 will not make sense. The statement will be “This generation will not pass away until the end of times and the tribulations pass away”! So this last part is, in my opinion, in favor of either “end of the temple” or composite context. The “end of the times” context is not able to stand alone without making the whole arguments confusing.

What is clear however, is that when the times of tribulation is over (depending on how you see it, we can conclude two different ways, that the tribulation has started and we are still there, or that it is still in the future) the Son of Man will return. And He will return in His full glory such that we can’t miss it. All of His elect will be gathered from everywhere, further supports that the second coming will not come until the Gospel is told to all nations. For that we must be ready.

I have not been able to reach into any conclusions, even though I have written all these. I’ll try to wrap it up in the next post.

On Mark 13

So, this Sunday I'm supposed to lead the Bible Study. We are at 3rd study of the topic "End Times" now, and the topic is about "Signs of the Times". The passage is taken from Mark 13 (which is parallel to Luke 21 and Matthew 24, the similarities are striking, so I guess this is why they think Luke and Matthew referred to Mark's account when writing theirs).

Usually, I prepared it on Friday or Saturday. However, I wanted to be more prepared so I do it today (Wednesday). Little that I know, my decision to prepare it on Wednesday was a really big help. The passage was very hard for me to understand. It's like a cocktail of imagery, prophecy and sayings about past, Jesus' present, our present (reflectories), and the future. In short, my head is filled with things jumbled up together. Hence, I try to write this post. Just to help me sort out things. If you feel that this post is not written systematically, then please do understand that the writer is really dazed. Haha.


So let's start with the context. Mark 11 talks about Jesus going to the Temple in Jerusalem after the Palm Sunday. So He went to the temple on Monday (Mark 11:12), 'cursing' the fig tree in the way to the temple, cleansed it, taught the people (Mark 11:18, Luke 19:47) and went back on the evening (Mark 11:19). He came back the next day to teach (Mark 11:27, Luke 19:47) and here He told various parables, and amongst them are the hard critics to the state of Judaism and the Pharisee's hypocrisy (Mark 11 and 12). Mark 13 comes when Jesus is going back from the Temple (13:1) when one of his disciple (unnamed) talk about the temple.

And as he came out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, "Look, Teacher, what wonderful stones and what wonderful buildings!" (13:1)

Now, the temple at that time is built by Herod (thus nicknamed Herod's temple), most likely to win the hearts of the Jews. It was said that the temple was indeed enourmous, Josephus account told that the stones measured 12 ft high and 18 ft wide (4x6 metres - larger than my room.. man, that's huge) and it was filled with white marbles and gold. Some says that at this point, the construction is still going, some also said that it only takes 3 years to complete (from 20 B.C.). Jesus' answer to that statement was this:

Do you not see these great buildings? There will not be left one stone upon another that will not be thrown down (13:2)

And that is what happened in history. In 70 AD, this temple was brough down by Titus when the Siege of Jerusalem ended. The siege was done because of the Great Revolts of the Judah Province (there are a lot of revolts going on there, the Zealots are one of them - refer to my post on the twelve: simon the zealot). The temple was pillaged by the Romans, and there were nothing left of the marbles and the golds. Up until this part, not much problem.

So He walk out of Jerusalem, and they went to Mount Olives (13:3). This temple is located just outside Jerusalem, and with an elevation level such that they can see the temple and its glory clearly - see the map.

Then Jesus' four closest disciples (Peter, Andrew, John and James) came to Him privately and asked him: "Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign when all these things are about to be accomplished?" (13:4, ESV) and this triggers the sermon.

Now, two things piqued my interest here:

  1. Why did Jesus went to Mount Olives? Was it a routine, or was it because He is preparing to make a reinforcement to what He is going to tell?
  2. Mark and Luke state that the disciples said "when all these things are about to be accomplished" (13:4 and Luke 21:7) interestingly, Matthew said that the disciple said that "of Thy coming and the end of the world" (Matthew 24:3, the Indonesian translation to Mark 13:4 also refers to end of the world). It seems that the disciples equates the destruction of the temple with the end of the world! They are actually asking about the destruction of the temple.

Ok, moving on. Then Jesus said about these things:

  1. To be careful as not to be deceived (13:5)
  2. Many will say that they are Christ (13:6)
  3. War and rumors of war will take place, and it needs to be, but it is not yet the end (13:7)
  4. Nations will rise against nations (13:8a)
  5. Earthquake and famines (13:8b)
  6. But all those are only just the beginning (13:8c)

Now, was Jesus talking about the destruction of the temple or the end of the world? I mean, it is easy for us to come into conclusion that Jesus is actually talking about the actual end of the world and is trying to tell the disciples that destruction of the temple is not the end of the world. But if we are to be objective, it is still inconclusive. (1) and (2) is more reasonable if it is talking about the end of the world, but does not mean that the otherwise is an impossibility. (3) and (4) is acceptable for both, as in the timespan from 30 A.D. to 70 A.D. there's got to be much war. (5) is actually happening today, and I'm not sure whether it happened between 30 to 70 A.D.

So I began to ask myself: what is Jesus talking about, really? Does He answer according to the context of the questions raised by the disciples? Or does He talks about the actual end of the world?

Or, maybe He is talking in parallel. Both about the destruction of the Temple (as a prelude) and the end of the world (as the real deal). As all five points are progressive, and is 'not yet the end'. Whatever it is, let's call this part as "Signs 1: The beginning of the end"

Now comes the confusing one, Jesus told the disciple that:

  1. They need to be on guard, as they will be prosecuted and questioned (13:9)
  2. The Gospel need to be told to all nations (13:10)
  3. When those happens, speak according to the Holy Spirit (13:11)
  4. Betrayal by brothers and parents (13:12)
  5. The disciples will be hated (13:13a)
  6. Those who perseveres until the end will be saved (13:13b)

If "Signs 1" are more suited if we think that Jesus is talking about the end of the world. However, these next points are sayings to the disciples on what will happen to them after His ascension. If we want to be consistent with the context, we need to conclude that Jesus must be talking in the context of the destruction of the temples in this part.

Well, to be fair, the other also fits if you apply it to our time/end of the world context. But consider the fact that Jesus is talking to Peter, Andrew, John and James in private, and the 'you' in verses 9 to 13 refers to them, it would be more natural if Jesus is talking about what the first disciple are going to face, which means, He is talking in their context.

Again, these part can also be regarded as talking in parallel, the near future and the future. As these points are also progressive, and it is a fact that disciples, be it the first or now, are facing all of the above. So let's leave it there for the time being, and call it "Signs 2: Persecutions"

It wouldn't make sense if "Signs 1" talk about "End of the world" and "Signs 2" talk about "End of the Temple". It's either both are talking the same thing, or both are talking in parallel. And now you see why I am confused. Haha...

I guess I'll stop here for today and continue tommorow ;)

To Be Continued =P

Pring reketeg gunung gamping ambrol...

I got this cool Javanese Rap Song from my flatmates =P it's cool and have a quite some Javanese philosphy in it. Scroll down for the translation =D (I put the youtube video featuring Jogja's pride: PSS sleman.. haha... other videos are a bit.. disturbing ;).. LOL)

Ngelmu Pring

pring reketeg gunung gamping ambrol, ati kudu teteg ja nganti urip ketakol 
pring reketeg gunung gamping ambrol, uripa sing jejeg nek ra eling jebol 

pring deling, tegese kendel lan eling, kendel marga eling, timbang nggrundel nganti suwing 
pring kuwi suket, dhuwur tur jejeg, rejeki seret, rasah dha buneg 
pring ori, urip iku mati, kabeh sing urip mesti bakale mati 
pring apus, urip iku lampus, dadi wong urip aja seneng apus-apus 
pring petung, urip iku suwung, sanajan suwung nanging aja padha bingung 
pring wuluh, urip iku tuwuh, aja mung embuh, ethok-ethok ora weruh 
pring cendani, urip iku wani, wani ngadepi, aja mlayu marga wedi 
pring kuning, urip iku eling, wajib padha eling, eling marang Sing Peparing 

pring iku mung suket, ning omah asale seka pring, 
usuk seka pring, cagak seka pring, gedhek iku pring, 
lincak uga pring, kepang cetha pring, tampare ya mung pring 
kalo, tampah, serok, asale seka pring, pikulan, tepas, tenggok, digawe nganggo pring 
mangan enak, mancing iwak, walesane ya pring,
jangan bung, aku gandrung, jebule bakal pring 

nek ngono pancen penting, kabeh sing nang nggon wit pring
pancen penting tumraping manungsa sing dha eling
eling awake, eling pepadhane, eling patine, lan eling Gustine
wong urip kudu eling, iso urip seka pring, tekan titi wancine ya digotong nganggo pring 
bali nang ngisor lemah, padha ngisor oyot pring, mulane padha eling, elinga Sing Peparing 

ora bakal bubrah marga iso melur, kena dinggo mikul, ning aja ketungkul 
urip kuwi abot, ja digawe abot, akeh repot, sak trek ora amot 
mulane uripmu aja dha kaku, melura, pasraha, ra sah dha nesu 
aja mangu-mangu ning terus mlaku, sanajan ro ngguyu aja lali wektu 
kowe bakal bisa urip rekasa, ning kudu percaya uga sregep ndonga 
Gusti paringana, luwih pangapura, marang kawula ingkang kathah lepat lan dosa 
aja nggresula, aja wedi, dudu kowe, ning Gusti sing mesti luwih ngerti 
ngatur urip lan mati, nyukupi rejeki, paring tentreming ati, 
cukup sandang pangan papan, bakal mukti pakarti


Well, roughly it meant (In Indonesian):

*Pring = Bambu

Pring reketeg, gunung gamping (kapur) runtuh, hati harus tegar jangan sampai hidup (tertatih?)
Pring reketeg, gunung gamping runtuh, hiduplah yang lurus kalau lupa jebol

Pring deling, artinya berani dan ingat, berani karena ingat, daripada menggerutu membuat bibir sumbing
Pring itu rumput(?), tinggi tapi lurus, rejeki pelan jangan pada sedih
Pring ori, hidup itu ujungnya mati, semua yang hidup pasti mati
Pring apus, hidup itu ujungnya mati, jadi orang hidup jangan suka berbohong
Pring petung, hidup itu gila, tapi meskipun gila, jangan pada bingung
Pring wuluh, hidup itu bertumbuh, jangan cuma ngga peduli, pura-pura tidak tahu
Pring cendani, hidup itu harus berani, berani menghadapi, jangan cuma lari ketakutan
Pring kuning, hidup itu harus ingat, wajib untuk ingat, ingat kepada Yang Memberi

Pring itu cuma rumput, tapi rumah itu dari bambu
rusuk rumah dari bambu, tiang juga dari bambu, gedheg itu bambu
lincak (bench bambu) juga bambu, kepang jelas bambu, tampare juga cuma dari bambu
kalo, tampah, serok asalnya bambu. pikulan, kipas, tempat nasi, dibuat dari bambu
makan enak atau mancing ikan, alas duduknya juga pakai bambu
jangan bung (sayur rebung), aku suka, ternyata juga bambu!

kalau begitu memang penting, semua bagian tanaman bambu
memang penting buat manusia yang mengingat 
ingat diri sendiri, ingat sesamanya, ingat kehidupannya dan ingat Tuhannya 
orang hidup harus ingat, bisa hidup dari bambu, sampai akhir hayat ya akhirnya diangkat pakai bambu (peti mati biasa diangkat pakai bambu kan..) 
kembali ke dalam tanah, dibawah akar bambu, makanya ingatlah, ingat pada Yang Memberi

ngga bakal rusak karena bisa melar, bisa dipakai mikul, tapi jangan ketungkul
hidup itu udah berat, jangan dibikin tambah berat, kalo terlalu repot nanti satu truk ngga cukup
makanya hidupmu jangan kaku, melebarlah, berserahlah, jangan marah-marah
jangan termangu-mangu tapi terus berjalan, sambil tertawa, tapi jangan lupa waktu
kamu bakal hidup menderita, tapi tetap harus percaya dan rajin berdoa
Tuhan anugerahilah: lebih banyak maaf, kepada hamba yang banyak salah dan dosa
Janganlah menggerutu, jangan takut, bukan kamu tapi Tuhan yang pasti lebih tahu
Dia mengatur hidup dan mati, mencukupkan rejeki, memberikan ketentraman hati
cukup sandang pangan papan, bakal memberi pengertian

Pring reketeg itu frase bahasa jawa yang artinya bambu yang mengeluarkan bunyi mengerenyit, suaranya kedengaran seperti reketeg
Pring deling, pring ori, pring apus, pring wuluh, pring petung, pring cendani, pring kuning adalah tipe-tipe bambu dalam bahasa jawa


A small taste of what I've been doing on my office for over a week


And what the hell is that? Friends, that's an Applet that is going to be installed on a SIM Card. Well, part of it.

My PL gave me an objective to study the structure of an applet bytecode. It was not a pretty sight haha. Anyway, I'm supposed to do a knowledge sharing this year on this topic as well, and the more I try to learn, the more I'm convinced that my audience will go to sleep instantly.

Hope it's not as bad as I think... Or maybe I should study more to find what we can do with these hexes..

Let there be bytecodes!

P.S. This is not a proprietary data, it's only a crappy applet that I used to develop on my training. I'm not stupid enough to post a product hex inside here. Anyway, I'm putting only the common and not-so-important part here >:)

Is there hope for every man?

This is a video montage for my church's Easter Service. The theme is a call for us Christian to act and to care about our surroundings.

For those who came to our Good Friday Service or visited Hezron's blog, yes, this is a continuation from that three videos. Those three was made by Hezron (give you a big hat tip bro), and this last piece was an unplanned, rushed, "continuation" from the the third video. (I volunteered to do this piece right after the Good Friday Service). But it was fun, doing something that I have not done for a while -- and I do have been thinking of making a piece using this song.

The title "Ojo mung nyangkem wae kowe le" is taken from javanese language, and is not included in the version that is shown in the service. Directly translated to Singlish, it means "Don't just talk lah you!" - Hezron actually asked me to put the Surabayans Javanese "Jok cangkem tok rek!" but I will not have peace with it. lol.

The song "Every Man" is performed by Casting Crowns. It's a nice song right? short, simple, but yet it really transferred the message across the audience.

All pictures are courtesy of its respective owners, we apologize for any inconvenience caused. I took most of the pictures from Hezron's collection (you might realize I intentionally put some pics here, just to let those who have seen the previous video realize that it is a continuation), deviantart (this is where i have to give my deepest apologize for taking their works indiscriminately).

So is there hope for every man?

Yes there is.

Let there be light!


There was a time when I lost my desire to write and to share. There was a time when I didn't see the point of doing a blog to express my thought. I am who I am though, inconsistent as I am in doing this blog, but I do want to share and I do long to write. Today I'm giving it another go. Fingers crossed. But I still wish that "Let there be light" is the message that I convey.
  • January 1st 2012, Kristo