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3-minute Sermon
 
Official Service Sermon > Official Service
Official Service
Title
   Power - Feast of Harvest Sunday Morning    
Speaker
   Rev. Jaerock Lee
Bible
   1 Thessalonians 5: 23-24
Date
   2008-07-06



Passage

1 Thessalonians 5: 23-24

"Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass."

Introduction

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

The Feast of Harvest is a traditional feast of the Jews. They kept it after they harvest barely and wheat.

They began to observe this feast to give thanks for the first harvest after they came into the Canaan Land, and that is why it is also called the Feast of the First Fruits of the Wheat Harvest.

It is 7 weeks after the Passover, so it is also called Feast of Weeks. And since it is on the 50th day, it is also called the Pentecost.

But in churches in Korea, we observe the Whitsunday as the Pentecost, and the first Sunday of the second half of the year is observed as the Feast of Harvest. We observe it on the first Sunday of July, wanting God to be with us in the second half of the year, too.
And on this Feast of Harvest, God the Father has given us the message with the title, 'Power'.

God the Father has been showing us numerous works of His power, and now we have many powerful workers in our church. Just as Moses had Joshua and Caleb, many of you are becoming workers who are strength to the kingdom of God.

It's the same with all of you. As your faith grows up, power comes down from above to that same extent. You will receive the power to struggle against and cast off sins and to act by the word of God.

You can also receive greater response and blessings through prayer with the power of the handkerchief and prayer through the telephone automated response system. All these are the evidences that God the Father is showing us His power.

As we finish the first half of the year and begin the second, I hope this message will become the standard to check what kind of power you have in you.

Also, this message will help you receive more power from above. I pray in the name of the Lord that you will become more powerful workers through this message.

Body

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, we are at a crucial point.

It's because we are about to build the Canaan Sanctuary.

God the Father has arranged many things so that we are eligible to receive the blessing of the Canaan Sanctuary.

First, He has been guiding us in the circumcision of our hearts, to become more sanctified and also He guided the restructuring the church's organization.

This is same as what He did to the people of Israel who came out of Egypt just before they began conquering the land of Canaan.

Physically, it was impossible for the Israelites to conquer the Canaan Land.

There were already seven different peoples who had settled there. Even though God had given the land to the Israelites, it was not easy for them to take it.

However, conclusively speaking, they conquered it. It was something that was absolutely impossible in a physical sense.
So we understand it was not done by the power of the Israelites themselves. It was done by the power of God who was with them.

Then, how did they bring down the great power of God?

I will talk about it in three aspects, and this is also the secret for you to become powerful men of God.

The first of these is faith. It is the faith in God and the faith in the leader who was appointed by God.

It was the second generation of the Exodus who had this kind of faith and conquered the Land of Canaan. They believed the word of God delivered by Joshua. So, they sanctified and circumcised themselves as they were told.

As a result, God showed them something truly amazing. The flooded flow of the River Jordan stopped. God let them cross it like dry land.

Such a strong fortress and the city of Jericho fell in a moment and they conquered it very easily.

To bring down the power of God like this, faith is a must.

We have to trust God completely and also trust the leader who is appointed by God.

2 Chronicles 20:20 says, "…put your trust in the LORD your God and you will be established. Put your trust in His prophets and succeed." God the Father certainly gives His power to those who trust Him.
Also, if we trust a servant of God who is confirmed by God's power, God considers it the same as trusting God Himself.

Then, how completely do you trust God? The more perfect the faith you have, the greater that power of God will be.

The faith I am talking about is not the kind of faith that is merely knowledge. It is the kind of faith with which you know and you can practice what you know; it is living and spiritual faith.

Some think they also have great faith thinking they love God.

They think they trust their shepherd because they love him. Those who think this way, did you really march on with faith when you were faced with tests and trials?

If we really trust in God, we will rejoice even in any kind of difficult situations. It's because those with faith look forward to the reality that will be given to us.

You say you believe in the heavenly Father and the Lord, and you trust your shepherd.

But now you have to realize how much truthfulness of faith you have in that confession.

Is it 10%, 50%, 90%, or very close to 100%?

It's the same with your trust in your shepherd who is guaranteed by God's power.

For example, while Moses was away from the camp of the Israelite, they made an idol and worshipped it.

When Moses saw it as he was coming down from the mountain with the Ten Commandments, he threw the tablets down and broke them. At this point, what do you think Joshua thought? In fact Joshua never had any doubt or question about it.

He never blamed Moses for anything and never passed judgment on him.
He just understood the heart of Moses and any actions that he took.

Not only in that occasion, but in everything else, Joshua never had any question about what Moses did.

He just completely believed that Moses was following the will of God and followed him.

It was same with Caleb. Numbers 14:24 says, "But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it."

Dear church members, and especially you who are workers, how much of this faith of Joshua and Caleb do you have? Did you spend the first half of this year exercising spiritual faith?

Some workers do not follow the will of God and say that they acted that way because they loved the shepherd.

But if you truly love your shepherd you have to accomplish all things with spiritual faith. If you have faith, you will show the deeds to fulfill God's word with hope and love.

God the Father deems it as faith and shows His power to turn the impossible into possible.

But you should not say I did it because I loved my shepherd, while you are not following the word of God.

If you cannot completely trust, it means you cannot completely love.


Second, to receive the power of God, we have to be sanctified. To become a really powerful worker, we have to reach the level of sanctification that God wants.

You have heard countless words about sanctification, but how deeply have the words about sanctification touched your heart?

Even if you may think you don't have evil in your heart, you have to check again whether you really don't have any evil or it just looks like you don't have evil.

Being blameless on the outside doesn't necessarily mean you are sanctified. You have to be acknowledged by God who looks at the inner heart.

Please check whether how much peace you had with others, how much you accepted others, how much you were yielding and conceding to others.

Joshua and Caleb yielded to others and accomplished everything, systematically following the order. Because Joshua was appointed as the leader, Caleb just supported Joshua as he could. He didn't want to become the leader but just did what he was supposed to do.

But in times of difficulty Caleb was the greatest strength to Joshua.

Comparing the hearts of Joshua and Caleb, what kind of a heart do you have?

How much did you surrender to others in serving them? Those who serve others are always thankful, even though they themselves are not served.
Normally, when you give 1 to another person and that person gives you back 2, you will be very thankful.

But those who serve others, when they give three or four to others and other gives back only one, they are still thankful.

Also, even if others do not give them back anything at all, they do not become disappointed, but they are only thankful to have served them. This is the mindset of true service. Those who are sanctified will serve others this way. So, just because you are the leader, if you put your heart in high place and break peace, you are not meeting the level of sanctification that God wants.

Just because you are working on my behalf, if you cause discomfort to others, it's the same.

Or, if your own righteousness is so strong that you don't listen to others and ignore what others say, it means you have not yet become sanctified.

You have to understand something properly about being sanctified. It is not just to have clear distinction in all things. Sanctification is not just clearly distinguishing between the light and darkness.

It is natural for a sanctified person to have love and acceptance.

Dear church members, especially workers in the church, please check yourselves once again. How well did you accept others with love and generosity? How much did you bind up their wounds and not reveal their faults?

Do you do just as our Lord did and never judge, condemn, or slander any other person?

When you found shortcomings in others, did you cover them and not expose them to others? Or, did you speak about it openly to cause difficulties for that person? If you have done any of these things, it means you have to sanctify yourself more.

Even though you are the leader, when you lead an organization you should not just do what you want. You should understand the heart of your shepherd. You have to think about the kind of love and generosity your shepherd would show to the members.

If you think about how your shepherd served our pastors, workers and the church members, you can understand your righteousness is not all that matters.

You should rather trust them, forgive them, and cover their faults, and speak words of strength.

You shouldn't just insist on your righteousness saying, "How is it that this is all that you have been able to do? You have to do this to accomplish the kingdom of God!"

God's kingdom is accomplished in peace. We have to remember it can never be accomplished by force or pressure.

Those who think they are born with good natures, you should also carefully consider your sanctification more deeply. You think you are doing everything with a good heart, but from the viewpoint of others, and with an objective view, it may not be true.

The kind of sanctification that God wants is to cast off everything in us. Then, we have to fill it completely with what God desires and pass on this heart of the Father God to others. The heart of God the Father is righteous and truthful. So, light and darkness and spirit and flesh will be clearly revealed before Him.

But this is not all that God the Father has in His heart. He has the love to sacrifice even His son to save the sinners.

When we have this love to cover everything, we can say we have become sanctified.

And please remember that God the Father gives His power to people who are sanctified like this.

Third, to receive the power of God, we have to obey. God the Father gives His power to those who obey.

You have heard so much about obedience, too. But those who have their own righteousness do not obey. When I mention something, some workers say, "This is better so we will do this." Then, I just submit to what they want.

But please just think about it just once more. Which one is right in the sight of God, for the flock to obey the shepherd or for the shepherd to obey the flock?

Especially, when the shepherd is guaranteed by God's power, is it not obvious that the flock has to obey the shepherd!
But sometimes, it does not happen.

For example, we had a period of time to restructure the church's organization. At this point, the Lord does not want anybody to have their feelings hurt.

The workers also say they know this heart of the Lord. But with the justification that they are reorganizing the system, they show their own righteousness. Sometimes they cause situations to suppress and restrict people. This is very far away from the heart of the Lord.

So, as a result, it means they did not obey the will of God. Now, you should not oppose the will of God saying, "This is better."

If the shepherd mentions the will of God by saying, "Wouldn't this be better?" the workers have to obey it.

If you say, "Oh, you don't really know about that matter. This way is better," then, it means you are disobeying.

For example, it's the same with the church revival.

There will be a time when revival is automatic and many people will come and be great strength to our church according to the rules of justice of God. But right now, we will have revival when we obey. The pastors, workers, and members should all preach the gospel and care for the souls voluntarily. Of course, you have to keep the order of the system.

But if the workers have to do things because of the pressure that is coming down from higher levels, it is a burden on them. Even if they don't say it, the burdens will be accumulated in their hearts.

Then, it means there is no perfect peace, and the fruit of revival will be less.

Therefore, the leaders must pray and receive good wisdom. You should maintain an environment where all the workers can work joyfully, so that lives will be revived vigorously.

If the leaders try to do it, God will certainly give them His wisdom and power.

Conclusion

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, as God the Father gave Moses Joshua and Caleb, God has raised some powerful workers in our church, too. To become one of them, you have to achieve the level of faith, sanctification, and obedience that God desires.

It should not be faith, sanctification, and obedience in your sight but only the kind of faith, sanctification, and obedience that God can acknowledge. Then, God can use you as He wants.

There will be more important things in the second half of the year. We as a church have to do greater things as the end draws nearer.

Therefore, we are in more desperate need of workers who have firm faith and sanctified vessels, and who only obey completely. I pray in the name of the Lord that more of you will become this kind of powerful worker and be able to fulfill the providence of God together at the end time.

[Amen]

 
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