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3-minute Sermon
 
Official Service Sermon > Official Service
Official Service
Title
   Good Children    
Speaker
   Rev. Jaerock Lee
Bible
   Romans 12: 2
Date
   2008-11-09



Passage

Romans 12: 2
"And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect."

Introduction

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, members of over 8,000 branch churches in Korea and all over the world including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Argentina, Chile, Japan, Mongolia, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Israel, Palestine, Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, DR Congo, Gabon, Angola, Botswana, Swaziland, South Africa, Burkina Faso, Liberia, Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Greece, Russia, Sweden, Estonia, Belarus, Ukraine, Dagestan, and local sanctuary members, those who are attending the service on the Internet all over the world, and GCN viewing audiences,
The title of today's message is 'Good Children.' This message was actually to have been given for the 26th anniversary Sunday evening service.
But because of the time constraints, I couldn't fully deliver the meaning given by God in this message.
So, I am delivering this message once again.
Through this message, I hope you will understand what kind of a person a good child is in the sight of God.
Also, I hope you will check how much goodness you have cultivated in your heart.
It shouldn't be goodness that is seen on outside but the goodness that is really cultivated in heart.
God the Father wants more of good children beginning with the 26th anniversary. He wants His workers to become good children for they are the ones who accomplish God's works. It's because the more goodness they have in heart, the more of God's heart they can understand.
Through this message, I hope more of you will come forth as truly good children. I pray in the name of the Lord that in doing so you will be a delight in God's sight.

Main

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, the kind of good children whom God desires is first of all, those who don't have fleshly thoughts.
What is fleshly thought? First, flesh is the sinful nature combined with the body.
And fleshly thought is all kinds of thoughts that are generated by the sinful nature in the heart. Easily put, all untruthful thoughts and evil thoughts are fleshly thoughts.
On the other hand, the thoughts that are generated by 'good' attributes in heart are spiritual thoughts. God wants His children to have only spiritual thoughts, not fleshly thoughts.
Romans 8:6-7 says, "For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so."
People cause pain to themselves or to others because of fleshly thoughts that are different from the facts.
Even in situations that are not really offensive, they become offended because of their own fleshly thoughts.
Also, they may pass judgment and even condemnation on others.
By doing so, the peace is broken, and furthermore, they may even have quarrels and arguments.
For example, there is a woman who still has pride and envy. She thinks that she is recognized and loved by others more than they love one of her friends.
And one day, only her friend was invited to an important meeting. This woman was very curious about this meeting and asked her friend what happened there.
But her friend, without telling her what had happened there in detail, only said, "It was OK." This seems that she is avoiding the woman's question.
In this case, this woman may become offended thinking her friend is not treating her as she deserves to be treated.
Also, because her friend was invited while she was not, she may think her friend is looking down on her.
If this kind of thought develops, she may even condemn her friend thinking she has become very arrogant. Then, she may even convey her thoughts to others.
In this case, is what this woman thinks right? It is quite far from the truth.
Most of her thoughts were fleshly thoughts that were generated from the untruth in her heart. The arrogance, envy, jealousy, and other things worked together to generate this kind of fleshly thought.
Maybe her friend could not tell her in detail about the meeting because she was not supposed to talk about it, not because she looked down on anybody.
Or, maybe she really didn't have anything to say other than, "It was OK." Perhaps something not good happened in the meeting, and she didn't want to talk about it, so she could only say, "It was OK."
If this woman had understood her friend's standpoint or heart, she wouldn't have been offended. She wouldn't have judged or condemned her friend. Even if she didn't know her friend's standpoint, she could just think in goodness and in spirit.
Therefore, we can understand that fleshly thoughts do not come from anybody else but only from our own evil.
Most people cause pains to themselves because of their own fleshly thoughts.
Furthermore they judge and condemn, and even slander causing quarrels and dissensions that break peace.
God wants His children to have spiritual thoughts, not fleshly thoughts. Whatever we see or hear, God wants us to understand in goodness and have good thoughts and good deeds.
In the above situation, even if the woman didn't hear the answer she wanted, she could have just said something warm from a warm heart. She didn't have to think any more than that, and she could have just been satisfied with what she was doing.
But there are times when people think that they are having 'good thoughts' while they are actually having fleshly thoughts.
For example, suppose a person starts thinking that he only has minor duties. So, he becomes a little disappointed with himself and then thinks, "I am not capable of taking on greater duties."
Even concerning the duty he has right now, he is willing to quit at any time thinking that somebody else will do it better than he is doing.
At this time, if he is abandoning his duty without any selfish motive, purely thinking about the kingdom of God, then his heart will be full of peace and joy.
But his heart is not full of peace and joy. Rather, he is sad and troubled. The fact of the matter is that he is disheartened and disappointed about his inability.
We have to acknowledge that being disappointed is also a fleshly attribute.
Therefore, wanting to abandon one's duty is also a fleshly thought coming from fleshly mind.
Those who have spiritual thoughts more earnestly ask for God's strength when they feel their shortcomings and feelings of incompetence.
They will have thoughts and true confessions of faith until the end saying, "Not by my might, but with the power of God I can do it."
Those who have spiritual thoughts and good thoughts will not have any misunderstanding in anything, so it's easy to unite hearts and work comfortably with others.
Now, I hope more of you will cast off fleshly thoughts completely and have only spiritual thoughts.
In doing so, I pray in the name of the Lord that you will come forth as precious workers who will accomplish important works of God.
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, the second aspect of 'good' children of God is good children give comfort to other people's hearts.
It's comfortable to interact with those who have good hearts. On the other hand it's not comfortable to interact with those who have evil hearts.
Their feelings are hurt even with small things, and their evil shows in their facial expressions, tone of voice, and their actions.
Even if they say it's "OK" with them, people around them can feel the uncomfortable feelings from them.
And we should realize that we cause discomfort to others as much as we have evil in our heart. Let me give you the example of 'arrogance' among the evil attributes.
Arrogance is to consider ourselves better than others. Therefore he who is arrogant cannot unite his heart with others in doing some work together.
He thinks that his opinion is better than others' opinions, and he insists that they follow his way. Also, the words and actions show that they look down on others.
That causes others' feelings to be hurt or even break their heart.
Some people have listened to the word of God for a long time so they don't show their arrogance on the outside.
But when they have a position in the church and they have authority behind them, they should really check themselves. For example, suppose a person has become a leader of an organization, whether it is big or small.
Being elected as the leader means that his work was officially recognized as being better than the work of others.
Also, he may have to exercise certain authority for the order of the organization.
Therefore, in proceeding with a certain work, the leader may propose his idea and insist that everyone follow it.
When the leader is able to quickly make a judgment on the situation and proceeds with the work with determination, sometimes people say he has good leadership skill.
But when the leader exercises this kind of strong leadership, some people in that organization may feel uncomfortable about it.
They may feel that the leader is being too coercive and commanding.
They follow him because the work itself is for the kingdom of God and to save souls, but they do it by feeling forced. They do not voluntarily follow the leader.
This kind of situation happens when the leader does the work with his own righteousness and framework that is connected with the evil attribute called arrogance.
This leader has strong self-righteousness and frameworks thinking that the people have to follow his way for the souls.
But because this righteousness and framework are interconnected with his evil nature called 'arrogance', it gives a hard time to other workers.
But those who are really good in heart do not cause any difficulties or trouble for other workers, no matter how high their positions go up and how much authority they have.
It's because they have the humbleness, the opposite attribute of arrogance. Those who are humble consider others better than themselves and they serve everybody in everything.
They become the leader not because of physical and fleshly attributes like knowledge or experience, but by the word of God that says, "The one who serves is the greater."
They respect and serve even very lowly persons from the heart.
They don't judge or condemn even those who have committed sins. They think from the viewpoint of others and have mercy on the weak mindedness of others.
They treat others with love and generosity in all things and show grace to them. They store up good deeds that come from a good heart for everybody in all matters.
According to the amount of goodness stored, other people's hearts will be turned toward this humble leader.
So, when this leader wants to do something for the kingdom of God, many people would volunteer to do it, even if he simply mentions it in passing. Even thought the work itself is physically demanding, they want to participate with joy.
How is it with you? Are you a person who gives comfort to your family members, colleagues and other workers? By any chance are you giving them any discomfort?
If a man has a very good heart, other people will feel the warmth just by thinking about him. They can gain strength through him thinking that is how a man of God should be.
I hope you will become such good workers and lead a great many souls into goodness.
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, the third aspect is that good children of God seek the benefit of others.
The nature of goodness is to give and share. Those who have goodness abundantly in their heart will keep on giving their possessions.
They do not seek their own benefit, but the benefit of others, and they are always considerate of others.
On the other hand the evil nature tries to hold on to one's own things while taking even more. Whether it is wealth, fame, or social power, it's all the same.
They feel like they will live only when they hold on to those things.
But God the Father has given His beloved Son to save sinners.
It was not just a simple death, but He took the wretched sufferings of the cross.
God sacrificed Himself completely for sinners. The reason why God could do it was because God is goodness itself.
Therefore, when He sees His children seek the benefit of others, He is very pleased.
Furthermore, when He sees His children sacrificing themselves for others, He will be moved in heart.
I hope you will be able to stand before God as good children who seek the benefit of others in all matters.
I urge you to check whether you are really good children who seek the benefit of others through the following example.
This case is when the result of your work or the event you took charge was either good or bad.
In case of men of flesh, when they achieve something in their work or duty, they give the credit to themselves.
On the other hand they try to shift the blame to others and they tend to shirk accepting responsibility if something goes wrong.
But a good child of God will not do that.
When the result is good, he gives the credit to other workers and gives thanks to them from the heart.
He doesn't do it thinking that acting that way is goodness.
Because he truly considers each coworker precious, he gives thanks to them.
If the result of the task is not good, he doesn't put the blame on anybody else but himself.
Even though it is evident that it was because of somebody else's fault, he thinks, "I should have cared for him more… I should have strengthened him more… then he could have done better."
Also, in taking responsibility for his work, he can accept any kind of disadvantage toward him.
If another weaker person is able to survive without losing his strength, he would sacrifice of himself by taking the responsibility.
This is what a man of goodness who seeks others' benefit, not his own, will do.
Since the opening of the church, I have always given glory to God for all the good things that took place. Next, I gave thanks to the people who worked together.
When there was a problem, I first repented before God saying, "God, it's all my fault. I taught them wrong and I didn't care for them enough."
And I offered with all my heart peace offerings to have peace with God completely.
In Colossians 1:24, the apostle Paul confessed, "Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body, which is the church, in filling up what is lacking in Christ's afflictions."
The apostle Paul could willingly take any kind of hardship or sufferings if only the souls could revive and the church of the Lord could increase.
Today, we are in desperate need of workers who can willingly sacrifice themselves for the souls and the kingdom of God.
If one's good work is not revealed, and if he is frequently taking the responsibility for the things that went wrong, others may think less of him.
But God who sees the heart will say such a person is really good; God will consider him to be a great vessel.
For the remainder of this year, I hope you will be acknowledged by God as truly good vessels.

Conclusion

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today's reading passage Romans 12:2 says, "And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect."
And I told you three aspects of good children whom God desires.
First they don't have fleshly thoughts; second they give comfort to others; and third, they seek the benefit of others.
If we understand the good will of God like this, it is the pleasing will of God to practice what we know.
And the perfect will of God is for us to continue such deeds without stopping.
Therefore, I hope you will keep this message in your heart and practice it from heart without changing in the middle.
Those who have good hearts can accept many souls with their generous heart.
They can also give grace to many souls and lead them to life, goodness, and spirit.
If all our pastors have such a good heart, how happy and spirit-filled our church members would be!
If all our workers have such a good heart, what a great strength they would become for the church and the Senior Pastor!
I pray in the name of the Lord that you will take this message as life and strength and come forth as good children whom God desires.

[Amen]

 
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