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3-minute Sermon
 
Official Service Sermon > Official Service
Official Service
Title
   God''s Abundant Providence(2) - Thanksgiving Sunday Evening Holy Communion    
Speaker
   Rev. Jaerock Lee
Bible
   Psalm 50: 23
Date
   2012-11-18



Passage

[Psalm 50: 23]
"He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors Me; and to him who orders his way aright I shall show the salvation of God."
In the Bible, whether Old or New Testament, there are so many verses that tell us to give thanks.
We should not just give thanks with our lips, but we should profess all the things for which we give thanks with all our hearts.
The praises in Psalms, when they were singing about thanksgiving after the Exodus, they did not just say, "Thank God for bringing us out of Egypt and letting us go into Canaan."
They gave thanks in detail, for example, for killing the firstborns of Egypt; for bringing out people of Israel; for parting the Red Sea; for allowing for them to pass through the Red Sea; and for destroying the Egyptian army that was chasing them.
Philippians 4:6 says, "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." It tells us that even in physically difficult situations, we should pray with thanks and not with worries.
We should give thanks and not just for getting answers and blessings but in the midst of difficulties, too.
The reason why God puts such a great emphasis on thanksgiving is because it is the key to receiving answers and blessings.
Thanksgiving is the surest evidence of faith that can directly show one's faith.
Without faith we cannot please God, and we can receive as substance everything we hope for only with faith.
Even if it seems we are at a dead-end and there is no way of out of hardships, God can open the way any time.
Even the Red Sea can be parted and the flooding Jordan River can stop its flow.
Neither drought, nor wars, nor diseases are any problem for God to resolve.
If there are very complicated problems in families, workplaces, or among people, God can easily solve any problem.
If we really believe that God controls the history, the life and death, and the blessings and curses of men-- the very fact that He controls all things in the universe-- then how can we not give thanks in any circumstances!
Also, when we give thanks for small things from the depth of our heart, God will accept that thanksgiving and give to us more greatly.
Even the parents of this earth would do the same.
If the children always give them thanks even for small things, how happy the hearts of the parents would be!
They would want to give them more and better things.
Today's reading passage says, "He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors God."
Today is Thanksgiving Sunday.
I hope you will give God a deeper aroma of thanksgiving for the grace God has given you, and for the greater grace that He will give you.
I hope you will honor the Father in doing so. I also pray in the name of the Lord that you will have fullness of conditions of thanksgiving.


Main

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
In the morning service, I explained that justice and love are needed for the providence of God to bear rich fruits.
Let us review it briefly. When God fulfills His providence, He does not just do it as He sees fit saying, "I am almighty. I can do whatever I want!"
It is also in the nature of God that He fulfills everything according to the order and law of justice.
Saying 'there is justice' in other words means that the price has to be paid to achieve something.
It is same as that in order to bear abundant fruit we must sow the seed, and take care of it with the sweat of our labor until we harvest.
When the providence of salvation of the sinners was fulfilled, Jesus paid the price with His life to fulfill the measure of justice.
In the process of paying the price, sacrifice and dedication must follow.
To make sacrifice and dedication possible, there must be love.
Jesus had great enough love to go through severe sufferings for us.
With His love that was able to accept even the unimaginable pain He would suffer, He completely fulfilled the measure of justice to achieve the work of salvation.
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, what is the result that Jesus fulfilled justice with love?
It was the fruit of glory.
He opened the way of salvation for those souls who believed in the Lord and let them enjoy glory as children of God.
Jesus Himself was also glorified as the King of kings and the Lord of lords.
Furthermore, He gave great glory to God the Father who orchestrated all these things.
Dear brothers and sisters, the relationship between justice, love, and glory will be applied to this church in the same way.
Going towards the end of human cultivation, when God fulfills His providence for the end time and for this church, the price of justice must be paid.
In the 30 years of history of this church, there was not a single moment that was meaningless in regard to fulfilling the providence of human cultivation.
God guided us in every hour of every day to bear the fruit He planned and to receive glory.
When God gave us a certain goal, and as we went towards that goal, we sometimes encountered hardships for reasons that we couldn't really understand.
But as more time passed, we came to understand that everything went according to the schedule of God who planned to achieve all things precisely according to justice.
The times during which we were patient were the times given to us to fulfill the measure of justice according to God's plan -- to pay the price of love.
Through the church growth, great works of God, manifestation of the deep spiritual realm, mega size overseas crusades and world evangelism, and fruits of spirit and whole spirit – through all these fruits that have been borne, God received glory.
The moments that we are going through right now are a procedure to fill up the measure of justice.
And the glory that will be revealed is much greater than the glory we saw in the past.
It is a process to reveal the fruits of glory – to enfold the invisible glory of God over all peoples; to save countless souls from this sin-filled world; to receive the financial blessings to build the Grand Sanctuary and to have enough strength to stand against the power of the anti-Christ and proclaim the glory of God.
God's works are not being achieved slowly.
And our waiting will not be so long.
After all His providence is abundantly accomplished, we will sing in one voice that truly His providence is perfect.
Dear brothers and sisters, in order to participate in this blessing and glory, there is a part that you have to accomplish.
In the great providence of God, in order for you to enjoy the glory together, you yourselves must have the qualifications.
It is to recover the lost image of God.
In the second part of the service we will celebrate Holy Communion, which embeds the ways for the children of God to recover the lost image of God.
We can be transformed into true children of God when we eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of Man.
John 6:54 says, "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day."
Reversely speaking, it means those who do not eat the flesh nor drink the blood of the Son of Man do not have eternal life or the hope of resurrection.
That is why our church always explains the spiritual meaning of the Holy Communion every time with a great emphasis on it.
First, to eat the flesh of the Son of Man is to take in the word of God.
John 1:1 says, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."
John 1:14 says that God who is the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and He is Jesus.
So, to eat the flesh of the Son of Man in other words is to take in the word of God.
This does not only mean we know the words of the Bible as knowledge, but we have to change our hearts with them.
It is to cast off evil and replace that evil with goodness and love.
To 'eat' the word of God this way, we have to drink the blood of the Son of Man together with it.
This means, as well as learning the word of God, we have to put the word we learned into practice.
It is much in the same way that when men eat food, they have to take in liquids too.
Without liquid, if they just keep on eating dry food, they won't be able to digest the food very well.
Our body also can absorb the nutrients and eliminate the body waste only when liquid is available.
In the same way, once we learn the truth, we have to not just remember it in our head, but we must try to practice what we learned.
We have to obey the words that tell us to do, not do, keep, or cast away certain things.
Only then will the word of God that you learned become your life and strength.
To the extent that love is added, hatred will go out.
To the extent that humbleness enters, arrogance will go out, and as gentleness is poured in, anger flows out.

In 1 John 1:7, we can understand that we have life in us not just when we eat the flesh, but when we also drink the blood of the Son of Man together with it.
The scripture says, "...but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin."
Here, 'to walk in the Light' means to obey and practice the word of God.
For us to be forgiven of our sins through the blood of Jesus, we have to dwell in the light.
As you attend this church, you will listen to this message at least three times a year.
But sometimes a number of you have knowledge of the word because you have been attending church for a long period of time, but your circumcision of heart is taking place slowly for you do not have enough spiritual understanding.
For so many years, you just put a cover over the hatred, anger, hard feelings in your heart and just lead a superficial Christian life.
If you are one of them, you cannot recover the lost image of God and become his true child and you cannot become a valuable instrument to be used by God when He is fulfilling His providence for this church.
I hope you my beloved believers will make up your mind once again.
I urge you in the name of the Lord that you will not be lazy at all but try hard to cast off even the slightest bit of untruth, so that you will become God's children who are sanctified and holy.


Conclusion

Psalm 126:6 says, "He who goes to and fro weeping, carrying his bag of seed, shall indeed come again with a shout of joy, bringing his sheaves with him."
We are having the Thanksgiving Sunday, which is day to give thanks for the harvest of the year, but we have not accomplished everything yet.
We will not stop our work to sow the seeds and take care of them until the dear Lord will come to take us and human cultivation is over.
And we will have various moments of harvest in the grace of God, and not just at the end of the year.
While ripples continuously come on the seashore, sometimes big waves also rush towards the beach.
The grace and power of God also come both in small scales and in full scale from time to time.
But in any case, the amount of grace one can receive depends on each person.
It depends on how big a vessel you have prepared to receive the grace, by storing up your works that you do with faith and hope.
The grace of God given at different times will let you bear different sizes of fruits for your works that you do with your thanksgiving, effort on circumcising your heart, patience, and trust and love.
I ask you to prepare your vessel diligently so that you will be transformed into true children of God, whom God desires to gain.
I pray in the name of the Lord that, in doing so, you will become honorable instruments in fulfilling the abundant providence of God.

 
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