Text Box: We Write For You! You Decide For Us!
Pittsburgh Standard

Text Box: I'm putting my rainbow in the clouds, a sign of the covenant between Me and the Earth. (Gen. 9:13, The Message)



Mission Of Paper

PS 2008 Board
Monthly Archives 
NOV - DEC 2007

Best of 2005-2006

Best of 2004-2005

Best of 2003-2004

Best of 2002-2003

Best of 2001-2002

Our Coverage  

Express Your View

Search this site or the web powered by FreeFind

Site search Web search




Posted on Wed, Jan 16, 2008 at 8:36 a.m. EST



AUG 2006 - JULy 2007




Video: SGB's Shady Henien Spoke Sensational Speech


"Coulter Comments Concerning Liberals Leaving Land!"


Slideshow: "Sodexho Serves Recepients the Champion of Diversity Award "


Photo: "Circle of Christians come to communicate with Christ at the Cathedral of Learning fountain"


Photos: Light Up Night Lights with Liveliness!



“Pitt News wants you to believe Shady Henien is the wrong guy for SGB President, but we don't"


Photos: “Egyptian-American Ascends to SGB Presidency with INTEGRITY believing in Almighty!"


Will Powers of TRUE slate attacks Shady Henien of INTEGRITY slate"



Video: Delta Zeta Deliciously Delivers Lusciously with Lambda Chi Alpha

Video: "Kappa Kappa Gammas Go Groovie Partnering with Pi Kappa Alphas!"

Video:"Delta Delta Delta's Dominate Delta Chi's Circus!"

Video: Chi Omega's Operation Offers Nothin' But a Gangsta Party at Kappa Alpha Psi's Place

Video: "Alpha Delta Pi & Kappa Sigma Sing in School"  



"Dennis Muttu Delivered Before His Death!"




Photos: “Egyptian-American Ascends to SGB Presidency with INTEGRITY believing in Almighty!"


Will Powers of TRUE slate attacks Shady Henien of INTEGRITY slate"


“Powers Promotes Preposterous Resolution to be Ratified Regarding Racism!"  


"Russia’s renegade attitude alienates and aggravates War on Terror"




Slideshow: "Peer PGSIS 2006 Poster Portfolio Presentations! "


“Top 25 candy cane responses given by Pitt students eating at Schenley Cafe in 2006!"


"If Cocaine were an alien, what it would not want you to know!"




Food and Culture Sample Exam I


Nutrition Exam II Sample Questions on Energy Balance, Water Balance, Vitamins, and Minerals 


Nutrition Exam I Sample Questions"  


Nutrition Exam II Sample Questions on Energy Balance, Water Balance, Vitamins, and Minerals 


Nutrition Exam V, Sample II for FinalNutrition Final Sample Exam

"Point Out Immanuel's Nurturing Truth" (P.O.I.N.T)

By Ramesh C.Reddy
Pittsburgh Standard

ay, Jan 16, 2008

 "And so John came, baptizing in the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River. John wore clothing made of camel's hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And this was his message: "After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit." (Mark 1:4-8, NIV)

I asked myself who are all the CHARACTERS mentioned directly or indirectly in verses 4-8:

  1. John

  2. Whole Judean countryside

  3. All the people of Jerusalem

  4. One more powerful than I

  5. Holy Spirit

I asked myself what I can learn about John from verses 4-8:

1.  John came baptizing in the desert region.
  John came preaching a baptism of repentance.
3. John was able to draw huge crowd towards him.
 John baptized those who first confessed their sins in the Jordan River.
 John wore clothing made of camel’s hair.
 John wore a leather belt around his waist.
 John ate locusts and wild honey.
 John knew he was a messenger.
 John shows his humbleness.
 John was prepared to draw crowds to the One more powerful than he was.

I asked myself what was the significance of each point?

Points 1 & 2:  John came baptizing in the desert region, preaching a baptism of repentance.

It is interesting that John did not go right into the cities to preach a baptism of repentance but isolated himself in the desert region, baptizing there. This fulfilled prophecy regarding ‘a voice of one calling in the desert!' Yet, he was able to accomplish something significant which is evident by point 3.

Point 3: John was able to draw huge crowds to him.

John must have been a powerful speaker or a speaker that drew interest that the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Now as I think about it, a desert region has lots of space that can be used for all those who wanted to listen to him. Also when the people found out that there was someone in the desert region preaching a baptism of repentance, they could have been reminded of the Book of Isaiah and wanted to check it out. Human tendency is that if a lot of people are flocking to an area other people will usually follow even if they do not know anything about the prophecy. This could have happened too. Now they are in the desert region and put themselves in a place to receive. This is evident by point 4.

Point 4: John baptized those who first confessed their sins.

I found it very interesting that John did not take baptism lightly but only baptized in the Jordan River those who confessed their sins. In essence, he was symbolically washing them clean. This happened only after he first preached a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. This showed me the connection there is between repentance and confession. These two became prerequisites to baptism. Only after people decided to repent (turn from) their evil ways and then confess their evil ways did he agree to baptize them in the Jordan River.

I also found it so interesting that desert region was mentioned first before the Jordan River. This made me realize that many times our lifestyle can be likened to a desert region. It is dry and like a parched land. We may want to get out of it but we are figuratively surrounded by the desert and hope for water to quench our thirst and give us hope. Yet, there seems to be a condition to receive that water into our lives. It starts with admitting when our lifestyle is wrong and deciding to confess and turn from it. When that happens we do figuratively receive that water into our lives. Now we have moved from the desert region of thirst into alleviating our thirst. Even then, it is interesting that John does not stop with just baptizing them in the water which is evident later.

Points 5-8: John, who wore clothing made of camels hair, wore a leather belt, and ate locusts & wild honey knew he was just a messenger.

I believe whatever the Bible mentions, there is a reason for it.

So I thought to myself, why mention John’s clothing attire and his food?

In olden days, emissaries used to come first to prepare the way for someone important who was going to come. They would lay out the groundwork and preparations for that person to come. They themselves would have some important title that would draw people to them.

For me clothing made of camel’s hair reminds me of fur and the expensiveness of it. The leather belt also reminds me of expensiveness. Leather can sure be expensive. Now the food he eats is significant too. He eats locusts and wild honey in the desert region. I believe God provided them for him. Honey to me is expensive and not cheap even in the supermarkets now.

For me all this pointed to John being someone important with a message. He knew he was a messenger and not just a messenger but a ‘powerful messenger’ and crowds were flocking to him.  Yet, he does something that is evident by points 9 & 10.

Point 9&10: John shows his humbleness by wanting to lead the crowd to someone else.

John does not take the opportunity to boost his own resume, getting excited about all the people that were coming to him. Instead, “this was his message: "After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."

John made three very significant points to prepare the way for the One who was to come:

  1. After me will come one more powerful than I.

  2. The thongs of whose sandals, I am not worthy to stoop down and tie.

  3. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.

Statement 1:  After me will come one more powerful than I.

This shows me that John was powerful but did not let that power go to him. Instead he is humble and tells the crowd that he is not the one to be followed because there is One who is more powerful than he who will come.

Statement 2: The thongs of whose sandals, I am not worthy to stoop down and tie.

He tells the crowd that even though he is seen as powerful, he does not feel worthy to even stoop down and tie the thongs of the sandals of One who is to come and that’s how powerful the One who is to come is.

Statement 3: I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.

John lets them know that there is a baptism more important than water baptism and it is being baptized with the Holy Spirit which he cannot do but the One who is to come will.

John has prepared the way for the One who is to come!

(To be continued)

I saw important implications for my own life. What stuck out to me was ‘pointing’. Whatever John did, his mission became to point others to Jesus. Even when the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem came to him, he was telling them not to focus on him but the One who would baptize them with the Holy Spirit.

When I was in full-time ministry for many years with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship as a volunteer/staff, I had the desire of wanting the fellowship to grow and all the people to come there. Even through that hope, my desire was to point people to Jesus Christ and Him glorified. Yes, it would have been exciting to see the fellowship grow in leaps and bounds but the purpose of the fellowship existed because of Jesus Christ.

Even now Jesus reminds me of the impact the fellowship made in pointing people to Him. We were a small fellowship but it was exciting to see people grow strong in the Lord and be impacted by the Lord. Every year while I was there, the fellowship existed even when we were losing students to graduation amidst of being small. We wanted Jesus to be the central focus of the fellowship and majority of the time, I believe He was in whatever we did. We did not have the numbers but we had the love and heart to see others grow in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Why am I sharing this with you, you may wonder?

I learned that numbers can just be numbers sometimes and it can give us a sense of false satisfaction even in fellowships and churches. Numbers necessarily do not always mean people are being drawn to Christ and growing in Christ.

Now as the Pittsburgh Standard is being published, there is the temptation to want to work on the paper only when I know a lot of people are coming to it and reading it. The paper is not here to build my ego but the paper is there to glorify Christ and to try to help people grow in the Lord and at the same time give coverage of events that are happening on campus, in the county, city, country, and continents of the world as time permits. This means even if only one person is pointed to Christ and is growing in their faith, it is worth it. Even if only one person looks at any article, it is worth it!

The awesome thing is that one of the students shared with me the impact the devotionals in the Pittsburgh Standard had to draw her to Jesus Christ! For that one person being pointed to Christ this paper's existence is worth it!

I ask you now dear friend, who do you point to?
Dear friend, if all you do is point to yourself, then this passage should lead you in another direction. It is awesome there are so many fellowships on campus and hopefully all continue to exist to point people to Christ and not just be happy with numbers that come. The same thing goes for churches.

I want to encourage you from experience that amazing things can happen with just few people too who are passionate and have a heart to glorify the Lord and bring people closer to Him carrying the vision of pointing people to Jesus. In my time in ministry with my brothers and sisters in the Lord, I have seen that happen! We were small but every leadership team we worked with at one time or other had a glowing and fiery passion to reach students with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and those who were already believers to help them grow in their faith. The fellowship was also honored at one time by the Student Government Board of the past.

You may have a passion and vision to help people grow strong in the Lord and point people to Christ, but may feel inadequate because of size. Don’t! For the Lord can use you where you are and help you as you seek Him diligently and become humble. If you have a desire to point people to Christ, He will open the doors and make a way.

I am part of Oakland International Fellowship every Sunday morning where their passion is to know Jesus and make Jesus known throughout the international community. You do not have to be an international student to be part of the church.

The church meets at North Dithridge Street opposite to Webster Hall. Prayer meetings start at 9:00 a.m., worship starts at 10:00 a.m., Sunday School at 11:30 a.m., and free lunch at 12:30 p.m. We also have Bible study cell groups on Friday nights. If you want information on any of these please email me or call me at 412-720-4579.

When we let Jesus be the focus, He will take care of the rest! Amen!

"Point Out Immanuel’s Nurturing Truth!"  (P.O.I.N.T)/”Who do you point to?”

Dear Lord Jesus, I want to thank you for this devotional time you have let me have and learn from. Thank you for helping me to share it with others. Oh Lord, thank you for John the Baptist's example in showing humility. Help us to be humble and not be carried away with numbers but be thankful to what we have and have a desire to point others to you and to help them grow strong in you Lord. Help us please to live for you and serve you. Thank you Jesus for being there for us and that you baptize us with the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit come reign in our lives. We confess our sins to you and repent of them. Help us and lead us by your Spirit that we may lead others into your radiant presence in their lives. Thank you Jesus so much for hearing us and answering us. Thank you Jesus for being our Lord and Personal Savior! In Your Name I Pray Jesus! Amen!

If you would like to invite Jesus Christ into your heart and make Him a daily part of your life, you can this very moment. You will never be alone. You can claim God's promises for you in the Bible and see them come true, before your eyes, in His wonderful timing. You don't have to wait for a special time to come to the Lord. You can come right now as you pray the prayer below, meaning it in your heart.

God I am a sinner. I am invaded by this deadliest virus. Many times I feel so guilty and yucky inside. I need forgiveness. I am so sorry for my sins. I have not obeyed you with my whole heart! I have gone my own way and done my own things. I still struggle with sin. I need you Jesus in my life so I can receive forgiveness and a new beginning. In the process, I can forgive others as you help me to. Thank you so much Jesus. I accept the antidote you have sent me. I believe Jesus you died for me and your cleansing blood will cleanse me from all my sins. You came back to life to save me. Thank you God I am set free, free from the bondage of sin. Hear my cry Oh Lord. I accept you Jesus into my heart. I make you my Lord and Personal Savior of my life. Thank you Father God for giving me Salvation. Thank you Jesus for coming into my heart and making my heart your home. Thank you for living in me Jesus and I will live for you and serve you the rest of the days of my life. Thank you for being my Lord and personal Savior! I can live a life of peace with you on my side. Thank you that you have heard my prayer and answered me! In your Name I Pray Jesus! AMEN!

No matter what you feel in your heart, know that Jesus has come in and resides with you! You are not alone! To make your walk strong with the Lord, spend time in prayer talking to Him as you would to a friend. You don’t need special words to talk to the Lord. Spend time in His Word reading Psalms and turning them into prayer. Next allow God to heal you and speak to you through the Gospel of John or Gospel of Mark before moving on to other Books of the Bible! Slowly, let the Lord show you to which Scriptures He wants you to go to next. It is also important to be part of a body of believers to help you grow in the faith. Find a Bible believing church that preaches the Word of God from Genesis to Revelation proclaiming Jesus Christ our crucified and risen Lord who brings us hope, healing, and help! But beware of churches who do believe in the Word of God completely but there is no freedom in Christ but legalism involved.

As a student, it is not too late to join a fellowship on campus too this blessed New Year of 2008! May the Lord's presence and peace fill you with His love now and forever! Amen!

Feel free to email me at reddy4hisglory2004@yahoo.com if you want to meet to study the Bible, pray with, talk about spiritual issues or whatever is on your mind! My number is 412-720-4579.

"This is my work and I can do it only because Christ's mighty energy is at work within me." (Colossians 1:29, TLB)

Love in Christ,

Express Your View


.Click picture to read my dad's memoriam:

' I AM ' Series Archives:

What kind of L.I.G.H.T do you follow? (Dec 13, 07, 10:09 a.m.)

"What kind of B.R.E.A.D do you eat?" (Dec 08, 07, 10:10 a.m.)

"Who is your S.H.E.P.H.E.R.D?" (June 30, 06)

Gospel of Mark Archives:

Mark 1:1: "What does the G.O.S.P.E.L mean to you?" (Jan 15, 08, 1:15 p.m.)

Mark 1:1-4: "How seriously do you T.E.S.T.I.F.Y about prophesy?" (Jan 12, 08, 11:18 p.m.)



Copyright 2008 Pittsburgh Standard

Reproduction or reuse for profit prohibited without written consent from Pittsburgh Standard