March 18th, 2018
ICA Sunday Pulpit Message
<Intro> Things that you realize the more you live
Today’s title of the sermon is “Slave or Son?” As we grow old, we realize a lot of things about the materialistic world. Whether you’re studying or managing your own business, there are things that you realize. You realize that the life you live cannot be controlled by you. That is the process of becoming a human, and it’s the process of knowing the world. Including myself, mankind is weak. The world that we live in is a dangerous and complicated world, and we will realize this. The parents, who have lived in the world longer than their children, will tell their children to be careful and to be diligent in their studies. Thinking of what they have experienced, the parents will tell their kids. “If you are not careful, you will get hurt. If you are not diligent, you will fall behind.” There are things that you cannot understand happen, and then you will think again. “Whatever I do, I cannot change the world, so I will just live as I please.” Not knowing the answers to this complicated world, you will say this and live as you please, and this is the cause of your sufferings. You will fail if you fall into this trap. We must realize the way to live correctly and live a correct life. Why is it that I cannot live my life the way I want?
1. There are things that the world cannot know, and can’t speak even if they know
(1) There is a being that makes people arrogant and make them fear. (Prov. 16:18, Gen. 3:10)
(2) There is a being that makes people to feel guilty and make them fail. (1Tim. 3:6)
(3) There is a being that trap people inside their fate and make them perish. (Jn. 10:10a)
You might wish to be a good person, but you will become an arrogant person. Without you knowing it, you can fall into this sense of guilt. Because you have a conscience, you can feel all of these emotions. However, you feel that sense of guilt continuously, and when you fall into it, you will fail. I was preparing for Wednesday worship, and this one man came to me to help him. I thought he was asking for money when he came up to me. He introduced himself, saying that he was about 60 years old and he was the owner of a construction company. When I saw him, I realized that his eyes were red, so I asked him what was wrong. He told me that he was addicted to alcohol for over 10 years, and his wife and children don’t know about that. When he drinks, he feels this fear, and he was so affected that he came to me and shared his concerns. With my broken English, I talked to him. When I checked if he knew about Christianity, he in fact was a Christian. However, I realized that he didn’t know the mystery of Jesus Christ. He didn’t know that Christ solved all problems, so that’s what I told him. I told him that, because he has a conscience, he can feel the guilt and fear, but that there was a being that can push away all of those fears and guilt. That being brings peace to the people, and all of the works of this being are only recorded in the Bible. Not even prestigious colleges such as Harvard can teach this mystery; only the Bible and the pastors who relay the message of God can tell others of this mystery. There’s a being that lies in our hearts. God’s method is to solve our problems through that being—Jesus Christ.
Who is the founder of arrogance? It is Satan, the devil. When things work out well, you can be happy and proud. However, that pride and happiness can continue, meaning that arrogance can continue as well. Since Satan is the founder of arrogance, wherever arrogance is found, Satan can infiltrate. Because Satan was a sinner, he was cast away from God. He became a being that was separated from God. Where did “being separated from God” began? It was from Satan. If you maintain this separation from God, what do you think will happen? If you don’t know God and be separated from God, what do you think Satan will think? He will think, “Oh, he is mine,” and take you as his own. What did God say to Satan, Lucifer? He said that Satan will fall into Hell. The placement of judgement was made for the Devil. Hell was made by God for Satan. It does not belong to us. The Devil knows the plan of God. He will have this fear. Because of that heart of arrogance, he has this fear and guilt, thinking that he is bound for eternity. These feelings belong to Satan.
Do you understand the life of the Devil? Satan is departed from God. He received the guilt and punishment and is bound to fall into Hell. Satan temporarily believed that he was reigning over the world. There is a great plan of God, but Satan is deceiving the world temporarily and bringing it to chaos. He takes people away from God. He implants those sins on people. Simply put, Satan becomes one with mankind, dragging them into Hell. The world does not reveal this. You cannot solve this with worldly power. Believers and nonbelievers will face death. The power of death belongs to Satan. The people are bound to die, and that death belongs to Satan. Then why is it that life doesn’t go the way you want to? It’s because this being, Satan, has become one with you. God gave a solution to this problem, but people don’t know this, so they fall into guilt and destruction. With that fear, they have no other choice but to go to Hell. When people who have kind hearts feel guilt, they will crumble and suffer. However, those people who are wicked will try to dispose of that guilt outwardly. They will compare themselves to others and form complexes. People know that they cannot fix these on their own, but because they cannot embrace that, they condemn others. If someone is better than them, then they form an inferiority complex. If they think they’re better than others, they form a superiority complex.
Since we have consciences, we can feel all of these emotions. Through all of your life, if you can feel these things, you are bound by something. The life style of the Devil, the arrogance of the Devil goes against God. God will not need those beings, and He will chase them away. Satan is filled with this guilt, and he will eventually face his destruction in Hell. Nonbelievers who are connected to Satan will face the same fate. They have a heart of arrogance that doesn’t have room for God. They fall short to God’s glory and will face disasters. (Rom. 3:23)
2. There is a way to solve the things that the world cannot solve
(1) There is a person who solved the fundamental problems of mankind. (Phil. 2:6-11)
(2) There is a master of true happiness that mankind can enjoy. (Jn. 10:10, Mk. 2:28, Isa. 9:6, Rom. 8:1-2)
(3) That person is Jesus Christ who resurrected from hell. (1Cor. 15:3-5)
These problems cannot be solved within the world. You see people trying to solve it, but all of them fail. That is why God sent his One and Only Son, Jesus Christ. The Offspring of the woman became the covenant. We looked at the life cycle of Satan and nonbelievers. Now, we must know the life cycle of Jesus Christ and His disciples. Jesus was one with God, but He gave up that position to come down to meet mankind. He was humbled to the extent of being crucified on the Cross. While Satan didn’t believe in Jesus and had a heart of arrogance, putting himself higher and higher on a pedestal, Jesus humbled Himself down. Instead of our sins and curses and disasters coming upon us, Jesus has died for them and obliterated all of those. He has given us this freedom from sin and the Devil. Satan will face eternal Hell, but Jesus, who was crucified on the Cross, was exalted to the highest place. Every nation will bow to the name of Jesus Christ. He will be acknowledged as the Lord. Looking at the life of Jesus, do you not realize anything? If we do not know the mystery of Jesus Christ, we will become one with Satan and face eternal suffering. However, if we know Jesus, if we become one with Jesus Christ, we will not fall into the pits of Hell but ride on the clouds of Heaven.
Will Jesus and God be separated? No, They are one with each other. That’s why, when we are one with Jesus, we will be one with God. That’s what it means to enjoy the mystery of Immanuel. Jesus, with the Word of God, with the power of God, went into the field. He healed incurable diseases and raised the dead. He didn’t perform those with special powers but did it with the power of God. The Devil, however, wanted to destroy all beings. That’s why Jesus Christ died on the Cross and resurrected. Just as Jesus ascended into Heaven, we will ascend as well. We have already given the background of Heaven. With God, you are sitting on the throne. We are trying to live a good life for ourselves, but we need to live a good walk of faith for God. What is the reason that we can go to Heaven? It is because Jesus finished everything with His crucifixion. God wants us to discover Jesus, to know who Jesus is. God wants us to confess who Jesus is. He hasn’t given us a nametag saying we are sons of God, He has given us the power of the Son of God. If you complete everything in Christ, everything will be restored. However, as you live your life on this earth, there is a being that makes you live like a slave and not like the son of God. That’s why God sent Jesus Christ to crush the power of Satan. Jesus has solved our fundamental problem. Because this problem is solved in Christ, we are able to enjoy happiness. What is the evidence that everything was finished? It was the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He has crushed the power of Hell and ascended. That person is our Lord, our God, and our temple. That’s why you have no choice but to go to Heaven in victory. I’m not saying that you will go to Hell if you commit a great sin and go to Heaven if you commit a small sin. We cannot overcome our own lives, but we realize that the things don’t work out the ways that we want. Everyone faces death. There’s a person who came in and crushed all of that, and that person is Jesus Christ. We are not servants who will have fear, but we will be strong as sons of God. For eight weeks, we will look at these messages.
3. When you know who you are, that’s when you will live true life.
(1) The sons of God who receive love from God the father. (Mt. 3:17, Zep. 3:17, Rom. 5:8)
(2) The sons of God who reveal the power of God the creator. (Ps. 50:1, Mk. 3:15, Lk. 10:19)
(3) The sons of God who save everyone following the will of God the savior. (Jn. 3:16, Mt. 28:18-20, Mk. 16:15-20, Ac. 1:8)
You must know the identity that God has changed for you in order to realize who you are and how to live your life. It’s neither by your feelings nor by your power. The righteous hand of God will always be with you. We are fickle, so we can let go. However, the great power of God’s hand will never let us go and take us to His kingdom. As Jesus did this ministry, there was something He received from God. He was baptized by John. At that time, He heard the voice of God, which said, “My Son, my love, you please Me.” The Holy Spirit then came down like a dove. God loves us so much. You need to know that you have become God’s son, someone that God loves very much. When you realize this, nothing will get in your way. You will know, in the end, that you don’t need to compare yourself to others. If you look at the elites, the world’s conglomerates, you might wonder what kind of world they live in. As they live in that world, they refuse to lower themselves. And they try not to deal with the people who are lower than them. They will leave them alone. For you and I, we are not people like elites; we are sons of God. Jesus came as Man and performed all those acts through the Holy Spirit. For us, who are one with Jesus, we can do those things as well. We need to be able to experience those things. We are not servants that are being dragged around, but we are sons of God. And if you realize your true identity, you are not trying to survive, but you’re trying to revive. What did Jesus do when He died on the Cross? People realized that Jesus died voluntarily and died to save our lives. What does this mean? From beginning to the end, Jesus’s life was for saving others. That’s why for those who believe in Jesus will be saved. You will live a life that can save others. You will not live like Satan, but you will live the life of Jesus who can save others. You do not steal, but you will give. If you know the mystery of Christ, you can give your heart. That is the heart of the parents. And the people who understand will accept it because they realize that they have their own time schedule made by God. We know that we will face hardship both spiritually and mentally, but we still share the message. Through Jesus Christ, we will become one big family. Become witnesses to the ends of the earth. That is the true life of a son of God.
<Conc> Jesus is the Christ who gives us different identity, different master, and different strength. (Rom. 8:14-15, 2Cor. 5:17)
In the past, we were one with Satan, but now we are one with Jesus. It’s not to the point that we will merely go to Heaven; we have become sons of God. Our identities have changed, our powers have changed, our lives have changed. Everything has changed, and it was finished through Jesus Christ. Everything in the past is now born anew. Know that you are a new creation of God. I hope that you can be freed from your fear and break from your mold as a son of God. You can enjoy those things by making disciples. “I am a happy person who is with God. I’m not boasting about my life, but I’m a son of God who lives my life through Jesus. Whether I am poor or rich, I will save others. Because I am not a slave, I am a son of God.”
Dear Heavenly Father, we give You thanks. We thank You for making us Your sons. Help us to discard the feelings given by Satan. Let us enjoy our identities. With that evidence of the Son of God, help us save others. Help us to enjoy true happiness and true blessings. Help us to restore everything within Jesus Christ. I give thanks and bless everything in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.