CFM – Christmas Day Hi-Tea 2017 Speech By Rev Dr Eu Hong Seng (Chairman Of NECF)

A very good afternoon, SALUTATIONS

1. It gives me great joy to welcome so many illustrious religious and community leaders from the various faith, gathered here today to celebrate Christmas.

2. It's always a good opportunity for occasions like this to reiterate that Malaysia is a multi-cultural, multi-racial and multi-religious nation as intended by the founding fathers of our nation in 1957, and reaffirmed in 1963.

Such diversity is the foundation bedrock and strength of our society and it ought to be embraced and celebrated.

Christmas in Malaysia in one sense is a celebration of that diversity.

So Thank You for remembering Christmas. What a joy to be in each other’s company in peace, joy, and harmony, amidst the many trials, turmoil and uncertainty in today’s world.

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Welcome Screen at CFM Christmas Day 2017 Hi-Tea
3. For Christians, Christmas is a time to be reminded of God’s grace and mercy in the gift of the child born on Christmas Day. Our Scriptures tells us in Matthew 1:23 He is the Son of God, who lived amongst us as “Immanuel,” which is translated “God with us.”

Later in the Gospel of John we are told of the true purpose of Christmas –
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

4. But Christmas is not only about the salvation of man’s soul. This gift of God to the world moves us as Christians to be giving to others and not just to be receiving. Every Christmas season is an opportunity for Christians to reflect on what they can do for others rather than to think about what they might receive from others.

5. In this season, we as Christians need to continue to ask ourselves how we have been a good neighbour to our fellow neighbours, our colleagues at work, our fellow students in schools, colleges and universities. But most of all we need to think about how we have given to our beloved nation MALAYSIA as a sign of our grateful thanks to Almighty God for granting to us peace, prosperity and harmonious relationships amongst the diverse ethnicity, cultures and religions.

6. Some Christians have formed organisations to serve those who are in dire straits during emergencies like floods. Others have helped to chip in with finances, food and supplies.

In the history of the Malaysian Church, we have always reached out to all communities. Today, we can say, hundreds of thousands, if not millions have benefited from our mission schools, medical clinics and hospitals, soup kitchens, dialysis centres, humanitarian aid, our drug rehab homes, old folks home, children orphanages, our financial literacy programs, our economic redevelopment programs, and other charities.

7. So on this Christmas Day, my main message is this - Iet us not forget to continue to give back to society, because God has given us so much, including the salvation of our souls.

Christians firmly believe in helping people of all races and from all religious backgrounds, be they Indians, Malays, Malaysians, Filipinos, Rohingas, Cambodians, Myanmarese.

We all must join hands and do more.

8. As the General Election is around the corner, I would like to take the opportunity to remind all that our Jesus is a non-partisan religious leader.

When John the Baptist was beheaded, there was no clamour for a public enquiry, though we need to keep in mind, such due process was not part of its system of government in the first century Roman colonial rule.

Similarly, when Jesus was sentenced to be crucified, there was no revolt against the government of the day. And when Jesus, the Emmanuel was resurrected, the focus was on repentance from sin, the salvation of souls and the kingdom of God, not the politics of the day.

But that does not mean that individual Christians cannot be involved in politics and social activism today.
On this Christmas day, let us remember the focus of Jesus: He was always mindful of the poor, the needy, the sick, the widows, the prostitutes, the children, the tax collector who needed to repent, be saved, and healed.

In other words, while the Church in Malaysia rightly prides itself as a positive contributor to social and relief work to society since her inception, we need to boldly state that the Church too stands up for justice especially for the poor, the oppressed and the marginalized.

That explains why the Church today is issue-centric and on some occasions, not even bipartisan but almost always non-partisan.

Allow me to reiterate, the Church rightly is non-party partisan politically as she is neither pro nor anti-government or any political parties. But we are always pro justice and pro righteousness.

We have Christians on both sides of the political divide, but vote we must. And after we have voted, in God we trust.

9. In conclusion, may the peace, prosperity and harmony we have enjoyed thus far abound. The Church has always been passionate about being a blessing to Malaysia. I am pleased to say, that passion has not abated.

God bless Malaysia, and once again, a very blessed Christmas to all.

Rev Dr Eu Hong Seng
National Evangelical Christian Fellowship (NECF), Chairman.
Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM), Vice Chairman.
Dated 25th December 2017

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