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   2009 Prayer Subject(1) - Blessing    
   Rev. Jaerock Lee
   Deuteronomy 28: 1-6


[Deuteronomy 28: 1-6]
"Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the LORD your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. [2] "All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the LORD your God: [3] "Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country. [4] "Blessed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground and the offspring of your beasts, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock. [5] "Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. [6] "Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out."


Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Let us give all thanks and glory to God the Father who has kept us and been with us in the spiritual space during this year 2008.
God the Father, with His love for this Manmin Church, has shown us countless signs and wonders and powerful works in 2008.
He has been delicately guiding each of us so that many people could realize it is the end time and prepare themselves.
And in this New Year's service, I would like you to give heartfelt thanks and glory to God for giving us such grace.
I also give thanks to all those who have been dedicating themselves in many aspects during this year 2008.
I give thanks to all the church members for having been praying for the church and the shepherd, for working faithfully for the kingdom of God, and for trying your best to become sanctified.
God will certainly pay you back for your effort and dedication. Brothers and sisters, this New Year's service has also become a global event.
Many people have come from all over the world and all over Korea, and many others are attending this service through satellite broadcast of GCN and Manmin TV, and on the Internet.
They are attending this service with the earnest desire to give the first hours of the New Year to God the Father. I hope the aroma of your sincere hearts will touch the heart of God.
Like the title of this message, I pray in the name of the Lord that amazing blessings will pour down on you spiritually and physically in 2009.
And because of that, I hope Manmin church will be set high above all nations and its members will also be set high above all nations.
I hope that none of you will fall back from this flow of spirit, but you will march on vigorously in 2009.


Let us repeat the title of today's message. "Blessings"
Yes, it is good just to hear the word 'blessings'.
But what is considered blessings by worldly unbelievers and what is considered blessings by God's children is different.
What is the use in having received everything worldly people call a blessing on this earth if we don't someday receive the inheritance of Heaven?
Also, even if we inherit the kingdom of God, it will still be somewhat pitiful if we receive few or no rewards.
That is why we children of God should not desire earthly blessings that we can see, but look up to the eternal rewards and glory that will be given in the heavenly kingdom.
Then should the children of God not have any hope for earthly blessings, and look forward only to heaven's blessings? Such is not the case at all!
If someone is going to receive many blessings in heaven why wouldn't God give him earthly blessings as well?
3 John 1:2 says, "Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers."
If our souls prosper on earth, we will also receive great blessings in the heavenly kingdom as well.
And if our souls prosper, we will prosper in all things here on earth and be healthy.
Worldly people try their best and invest everything just to gain the earthly blessings.
However God's children look to the future with hope of receiving the blessings in the kingdom of heaven. Those who store up and sow in heaven will certainly receive blessings on this earth as well.
When we give our money, time, health, effort, and hearts to God with faith, we will surely bear fruit on this earth as well as heaven.
But the point in time of bearing such fruit can be different from person to person.
It may seem that two people each have sown exactly the same thing, however it is possible for the fruit to be different.
Then, are you reaping as you have sown? Are you receiving the blessings that you desire?
Now, during 2009, in this "Year of Blessing", how can we receive the whole blessing? We will be looking at three aspects to accomplish it.
Through this message, I pray in the name of the Lord that you will have hope for not only blessings on this earth but also the rewards and glory that will be given on the Final Day of Judgment.
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, to receive the full blessing, first, we have to check how much we have sown.
We cannot expect to reap something without sowing. If we do, it means we are looking for luck.
It's same as a person who is waiting under an apple tree for an apple to fall.
We cannot expect good fruit after sowing bad seed. After bringing in the harvest, the farmer will select the best seeds for the next year's farming.
If we sow bad seed and complain because we don't get good fruit, then, it just doesn't make sense.
We cannot expect an abundant harvest after sowing only a few seeds either.
Suppose we have a 10-acre field, but we sow seed in only 1 acre. Then, if we expect to reap from all 10 acres, does it make sense?
If we look forward to an abundant harvest, it is only reasonable for us to sow abundantly.
This is just in accordance with spiritual law as well.
Galatians 6:7 says, "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap."
2 Corinthians 9:6 says, "Now this I say, he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully."
Then, have you sown accordingly to be able to receive blessings?
Here, 'sowing' does not only mean giving monetary offerings.
Of course we have to sow monetary offerings, but we also sow other material and spiritual things such as prayer, voluntary service for the church, confessions of lips, thanks, and joy.
Even though we want to receive blessings, if we do not sow material things, or pray, or work for God's kingdom, then, we can never receive blessings. Even if we give a lot in offerings, the blessings will come slowly if we do not pray.
The blessings will be delayed if we do not work fulfilling our duties for God's kingdom.
It is the will of God to give material blessings to those who pray and work faithfully, and also to those whose souls are prosperous. This is complete blessing, the whole blessing.
Also, if we sow in offerings, prayers, and in diligent works for God's kingdom, but if it is done without faith and hope, it is not proper sowing.
Some people sow those things because others are doing so, but actually they are not sowing with faith and hope.
These people will try within their limitations, but if they don't bear any fruit, they will soon give up.
God the Father does not receive just the offering or the acts of working for God, but He receives the aroma of heart contained in them.
Only when we sow with faith and hope can the thick aroma of the heart contained in the act be accepted by God.
Some people sow wholeheartedly, but they pour out their blessings out because of their lips.
If we complain or make negative professions, it is same as digging up what we have planted or tearing down what we have built.
So, we should not just think we have sown a lot. We have to check how much we have really sown in the sight of God.
But when we sow before God the Father, we have to sow what is perfect so we can reap the whole blessing.
Leviticus 22:20-22 says, "Whatever has a defect, you shall not offer, for it will not be accepted for you. [21] 'When a man offers a sacrifice of peace offerings to the LORD to fulfill a special vow or for a freewill offering, of the herd or of the flock, it must be perfect to be accepted; there shall be no defect in it. [22] 'Those that are blind or fractured or maimed or having a running sore or eczema or scabs, you shall not offer to the LORD, nor make of them an offering by fire on the altar to the LORD."
Therefore, when we give offerings to God, we have to give what is acceptable to God.
We must not give any money that is earned by unrighteous means. Also, if we give out of stinginess, it cannot be considered a whole and proper offering.
If you think you are not receiving blessings even though you are sowing before God, I urge you to check whether you voluntarily gave to God with a cheerful heart.
Moreover, when we sow prayers or our service for God's kingdom, we have to check whether we are sowing properly.
I've always explained what kinds of prayers and service are proper in the sight of God. When we sow our offerings, prayers, and service before God in a proper way, God will bless us according to the measure of our faith.
He may give pressed down, shaken together, and running over, or 30, 60, or 100 times more.
Of course, the more we sow, the more He gives to us. But here, to give a lot is not about the actual amount of money in comparison with other people.
Some people may have only two copper coins, but it's all they have.
Also, some people may be able to pray only for a little while, but they try their best and pray fervently with all their heart while praying.
Though the God-given duty is something small, some people try all their best to fulfill it.
God knows the situation of each one of us. If we give all our heart with faith and hope and try our best, God does not say it is little.
Therefore, I urge you to check what and how much of it you have sown before God according to the Word.
I pray in the name of the Lord that you will check whether you have the proper vessel to receive blessings according to the rules of justice, and make yourselves proper vessels to receive blessings.
In order to receive the whole blessing, secondly, we have to check whether we looked forward to blessings with faith without using our fleshly thoughts.
Even worldly people believe that they will reap the fruit when they sow the seed. For example, they also believe if they invest well they will be able to gain much profit.
They also believe they will reap a lot when they sow a lot. But their belief is limited to only visible things.
If we tell them to sow in the kingdom of heaven that is invisible, they don't believe it. If we tell them to sow for something they cannot see or touch right now, then most of them will doubt it and they will not sow.
But Hebrews 11:1 says, "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen."
Therefore, those who sow with faith do not look at the reality of the current situations.
Even though they cannot see anything right now, they just rely on the word of God and sow. This is to sow with faith.
And I have been doing so since I met God.
Even though I didn't have any money in my hand, I relied on the word telling us we will reap as we sow. I enjoyed giving to God.
Because God says the more we sow the more we will reap, I always tried to do my best in giving to God.
Even after the opening of this church, I have been sowing in various areas only with faith.
I sowed to raise pastors, to establish the performing art committee, and for the evangelism in Korea and all over the world.
As I always say, we didn't sow because we had more than enough.
It's not that I sowed and invested because we needed many pastors and we needed the performing art committee urgently at that time.
It's not that I sowed because I could clearly see the fruit of evangelism in Korea and all over the world.
I only sowed relying on the word of God and looking up with faith for the fruit that would be revealed in reality.
That is why we didn't stop world evangelism even when we were in difficulties, but rather we showed even greater faith in those situations.
What is more important is that, while we were sowing, we didn't use any fleshly thoughts thinking, "When can we see the fruit? Can we really see the fruit of this?"
Likewise, sowing in faith does not refer only to giving offerings.
Since the opening of this church, we have been praying without ceasing for the Grand Sanctuary.
We didn't give offerings for the construction of Grand Sanctuary, but we have been sowing fervent prayers and offerings for the kingdom of God.
We didn't have fleshly thoughts like, "Can we really build this Grand Sanctuary?"
There are many things that are impossible by men's wisdom and thoughts, but for God the Almighty, nothing is impossible.
Because we have been sowing our offerings and prayers, the Grand Sanctuary will certainly be constructed by the methods of God when the time comes.
It is not in accordance with justice if we want to reap without sowing, and if we doubt using our fleshly thoughts, it is not in accordance with the justice to receive blessings.
Therefore, to sow is important, but it is also important to look forward to the blessing with faith without having any fleshly thoughts.
In 2 Chronicles 20:20 the latter half says, "...put your trust in the LORD your God and you will be established. Put your trust in His prophets and succeed."
To receive blessings and answers, we have to trust the LORD God and the prophet who delivers the word of God.
When Israel had three and half years' of drought, the widow in Zarephath trusted Elijah the prophet.
Elijah said something that was absolutely nonsense in a physical sense, but the widow of Zarephath trusted him and obeyed.
1 Kings 17:13-16 says, "Then Elijah said to her, "Do not fear; go, do as you have said, but make me a little bread cake from it first and bring it out to me, and afterward you may make one for yourself and for your son. [14] "For thus says the LORD God of Israel, 'The bowl of flour shall not be exhausted, nor shall the jar of oil be empty, until the day that the LORD sends rain on the face of the earth.'" [15] So she went and did according to the word of Elijah, and she and he and her household ate for many days. [16] The bowl of flour was not exhausted nor did the jar of oil become empty, according to the word of the LORD which He spoke through Elijah."
It seemed absolutely impossible to obey according to the situation at the time, but the widow trusted the prophet and obeyed him.
Even though it didn't agree with her thoughts, she obeyed the word of the prophet when he said it was a blessing to obey him.
You realized this fact very clearly through the trials in '98 and '99.
I told you many times that the three trials were the trials of blessings, and I urged you not to see, hear, or spread anything that was not truth.
And those who trusted that word and obeyed it received blessings from God.
God gave not only material blessings but also abundant spiritual blessings.
If you check your heart, thoughts, and deeds at that time, you will understand how precise what I am saying is.
And not only at that time, but even now many of our church members receive this kind of blessing and give their testimonies.
According to how much they trusted the words of their shepherd, they experience that the magnitude and the number of blessings they receive become different.
I urge you to check as to how much you trusted your shepherd and how much you trusted and obeyed his word.
Then, I believe none of you will say, "I have been sowing, praying, and working for God's kingdom but have not received blessings."
But is there anybody who really trusted your shepherd and obeyed his word but has not received blessings yet?
Then, I want you to realize that you are in the process of trials to receive the whole blessing.
That is why, in order to receive complete and whole blessings, thirdly, we have to pass the trials of blessings and feel the love of God that is contained in them.
God the Father has not always given me and our church the best and most comfortable situations.
In physical sense, He has rather given us difficult situations. And whenever we overcame each of the difficult situations with faith, endurance and love, He has guided us to the way of greater blessings.
It's the same with all of you who have been in Manmin church until now.
In fact, if we just consider the physical aspect, how many of you have been leading a comfortable life in faith?

Of course, in spiritual sense, we of Manmin church have the best environment to lead our Christian lives.
But in physical sense, there were also times of tests and trials, and times when we would not have been able to bear without faith.
Also, to achieve the highest level of spirit, there were many harsh trials.
Sometimes we had to run even to the point where we became short of breath to ride on the flow of spirit and whole spirit. At other times, we had the painful times of recovering from the wounds that were festering.
For the seed that is sown in the ground to grow up and bear fruit, it has to overcome rain, wind, and even storms, as well as the dangers from harmful insects.
Likewise, we are given the best spiritual circumstances, but for the best grain of wheat to come out from us, we need the time of trial.
Only the wheat that overcomes those trials will be the fruit of blessing, the joy to the farmer.
That is why God the Father has allowed our church and our church members these trials of blessings.
And even though such trials of blessings felt somewhat burdensome to us, we soon realize all of them were the love of God the Father.
It is the love of God the Father who wants to make us His true children, the best wheat. This is the same for the blessings in all the other areas.
To give us complete blessings, God always lets us pass the process of trials.
If blessings are given easily without having to pass such processes of trials, how can we understand the value of the blessings?
We can understand the value of the gold medal in Olympics only after going through the sweat and training, even if it feels difficult and tough for that moment.
We can feel the true value of and give thanks for the material blessings and blessings given to workers of God only when we receive them after going through the processes of trials.
I hope more of you will be able to give this kind of thanks to God in 2009.
But actually, you will be able to give complete thanks to God when you reach heavenly kingdom.
When you see all the things in the kingdom of heaven given to you, which is incomparably more than what you have given and done for God, you will feel the love of God the Father.
You will shed the tears of true joy and thanks before the love of God the Father who refined and changed us on earth and returns to us the whole and complete blessing in the kingdom of heaven.
I pray in the name of the Lord that more of you will be able to make this kind of confession of joy and thanks before the throne of God in New Jerusalem.


Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, for whatever you have sown and done in faith, God will certainly bless you to reap accordingly.
As said in Galatians 6:9, "Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary."
Whatever you have sown, if you march forward with faith having no doubt, you will surely reap when the time comes.
It has been the case with our church, too until now.
Even though we didn't have any fruit of blessing at the moment, we have looked up with the eyes of faith and prayed.
As a result, the fruit of blessings are revealed one by one here and there.
It is God who knows the best time and place to give us blessings.
Thus, we shouldn't decide a time and wait for the time to come. We should look forward to the best time in the sight of God with faith.
And in this year 2009, God has proclaimed it as the 'Year of Blessing' and the title of the message of this New Year's service is also 'Blessing'.
Today, the whole world is only talking about economic difficulties.
And in times like these, God is proclaiming, "Blessing!".
In today's passage, God says, "I will set you high above all nations of the earth." He also says, ""All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you."
God says that you will receive blessings in all the aspects of your lives, in your families, workplaces, and business fields, and He says you will receive blessings whether you come in or go out.
How hopeful this word is! But there is a condition on all the promises of God given to us.
It is that, "if you diligently obey the LORD your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today." We have to obey the word of God.
The world is going towards more and more difficult situations, and God the Father is looking for people who are spiritually well-trained.
God looks for people who cultivate faithfulness and follow the right way, and dwell in the truth in any kind of circumstances.
God wants to reveal His glory by blessing such men of God regardless of the physical flow of this world.
Now is the time for the men of God to be revealed and shine their lights.
The value of the genuine article shines out even more in difficult situations.
I hope you will thoroughly believe that this year 2009 is the year of blessings.
I would like you to perfect your faith through your deeds following the word of God saying, "by deeds your faith is complete."
By doing so, we have to receive blessings as the church as well as receiving blessings and personal levels.
I pray in the name of the Lord, in this year 2009, that Manmin will spread all around the world the glory of God the Father the source of blessings.


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