October 29th, 2017
ICA Sunday Pulpit Message
<Intro> The meeting with God (action), personal worship (ceremony), summit time (status)
As time passes, truths are revealed. We used to think that Hitler committed suicide after the WWII, but after the secret report was uncovered, we now know that Hitler was alive for a long period of time after the war. Likewise, in the world, many things are being uncovered. However, one thing has always been hidden. It is strange. It is like a miracle. That is the Gospel. Unseen to our eyes, God is alive and is with you. Because we cannot see or meet the Almighty God, He came to us. That God is Jesus Christ. Who is the Christ? Christ is Jesus who came to earth two thousand years ago. Jesus carried out three important tasks that no one can imitate.
First, Jesus died. Everyone dies. Some people agree that Jesus died quite unjustly. However, His death was not unjust. He was judged and died for all our sins. His death was intended and planned. Second, Jesus resurrected. How could a person be revived after death? It seems like a rumor, but Jesus actually overcame the curse and the disaster of death and resurrected. What does this mean? He showed the authority that transcends the power of death. Last, Jesus ascended into the heaven. How could a person ascend into the heaven? Maybe you saw some kind of fantasy. In actuality, Jesus sat on the right hand of the throne and sent the Holy Spirit to be with His chosen people. He liberated us from eternal damnation of sin. Because He died, we completely came out from our fate. He gave us the authority to overcome Satan who brings death, curses, and disasters. Although He is unseen to our eyes, God is always with us, guides us, and answers us. This is an amazing miracle and a blessing. When you confess that Jesus is your Lord, these three blessings will become yours. God’s Word has always been fulfilled. Numerous believers have realistically enjoyed these blessings. This is the promise of the Bible.
I want to share this with you. Fear God and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord. I hope that you would be guided by the Holy Spirit. This is the blessing of saved people of God. Because the blessing of salvation is so good, we continue to look toward God. We want to be with God and meet God. That is why God taught us how to worship. We worship together once a week on the Lord’s Day. Also, we worship individually throughout the week to be with God. When you love someone, you want to be with that person all the time. When we experience the things of God, we realize the value. Although we may be lacking, God works through us.
When we have this experience, we come to believe that God has a big plan for us and that He is guiding us. We can enjoy this through worship. Time of worship is to meet God. Also, it is a summit time. It means that we are meeting God at the status of spiritual summit. It is important to meet other people of the world, but meeting with God is more important. The most important time is when we give personal worship and have our summit time. Often times, Christians seem like they are not well off than nonbelievers. That is because they do not have the summit time. This doesn’t mean that you are going to hell. Heaven is already guaranteed for us, but you remain powerless on this earth. In the world, there are lots of successful politicians, celebrities, and economists. They all have their personal time during a day. Nowadays, people call it a time of “meditation”. They have a time to focus on the spiritual, mental, and physical statuses. That’s how things are nowadays. What you are concentrate on is very important.
1. Why must we continuously meet God?
(1) It is the privilege of the one who has the Gospel. (Heb. 4:16)
(2) The future changes depending on what you are imprinted by. (Eph. 3:17)
(3) If you don’t have enjoyment, you will eventually fall into unbelief. (Gen. 3:1-6, 12:10, Mt. 16:21-23)
There is a reason why we must continuously meet God through personal worship and summit time. You should grab hold of this reason. Or else, you will be shaken even though you received salvation. You will lose to nonbelievers even though you possess this privilege. Why must we meet God? It is a privilege for Christians to meet God. Who are the ones that have the Gospel of Christ? They are the ones who accepted Christ as their Lord. How does the Father God view His Son? God calls His Son beloved. He takes joy in Him. If you have Christ in you, how would God view you? He will be joyful and love you greatly. You will receive God’s mercy. God will help you when you are in need. So we can boldly go before God. We have the privilege to go in front of God. Personal worship is not a simple thing. I hope you enjoy this privilege.
Depending on what you are imprinted by, the future changes. We change when we are imprinted by God’s Word. My mother is here. She knows me very well. I used to be weak. I only ate what I liked. I would start on a project but never finish it. My mother was worried about me. While I was working for Korean government, I met this person. He had something I didn’t have. He was tall and handsome, and he was an army instructor back in the days. Because I didn’t have an older brother, he was like an older brother to me. I have never seen him angry. Although we are both males, I thought he was charming. It was God’s work. Because he was a devoted Christian, he shared the Gospel with me. We started to memorize the Bible verses. Back then, I didn’t know the value of the Bible because I had no knowledge about it. However, since the senior wanted me to memorize the verses, I gladly did it. There were more members beside me, but I wanted to memorize the most verses so that I can be complemented by that senior. He made me memorize the same Bible verses over and over again. Without me knowing, the verses were slowly imprinted in me. I started to change. Now I can eat anything. Although I haven’t tried snake, I even tried dog meat. My personality changed. I used to not like meeting people, but now I meet too many people. I was quiet, but now I am so talkative that sometimes I make mistakes. I was completely changed. That is the power of the Gospel and God’s grace. What is imprinted in you changes you. This is a fearsome thing. By continuously worshiping God and receiving His grace, you will be completely changed. With what are you imprinted by? I hope you would be imprinted by God’s love, grace, and power.
When we read God's Word, the spiritual blessing roots down. Our thoughts and mind become firm. It is promised in the Ephesians that God will fill us. Maybe there are people who struggle with past scars. The people with communism ideology, they are hard to change. That is why the imprint is important. If you are imprinted by God's authority through your summit time and personal worship, then fruits will bear. We should be imprinted by the Gospel. We must be rooted on this in order to receive blessings. Christ solves all our problems. He solves our past, present, and future problems. He answers to our prayers. He even gives us the things we have not asked. No one can take away the true peace that comes from this. If we are imprinted by other things, the spiritual blessing cannot be rooted down. I hope you enjoy God's peace that no one can take away.
I always say this. Even though we don't do anything, our lives are blessed. All the figures of the Bible were like this. They didn't try hard. All they did were holding on to God's promise and praying. They waited and God changed everything. In the morning when you wake up, if you read God's Word and pray, amazing works will arise. By reading, writing, and speaking God’s Word, you become imprinted. We humans are different from other animals that we need to have the spiritual time. If we don't enjoy this time, we fall into unbelief. When we have unbelief we tend to find other people of the world instead of God. Then, Satan will deceive us. We have to keep pretending in this world. Eventually we will fail. Nothing works out as we want. How did Eve see the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil? God said “you will surely die,” but Eve doubted it. God called Abraham. God told him to stay in the land of Canaan. God said He will be with him and Abraham will become the source of blessing. However, when famine came, Abraham forgot about God's Word and went to the land of Egypt. When God's Word is not rooted down on you, you will fall into unbelief. In Matthew 16, Peter confessed that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the living God. Upon hearing this Jesus was very pleased. Jesus said, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not reveal to you by flesh and blood, but by My Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven." Jesus blessed Peter tremendously. Then Jesus said that He would face great trials. He explained that He would die on the Cross. However, Peter, who made the great confession, told Jesus that He shouldn't die. Jesus replied to Peter, "Go away, Satan." Why did this happen? It is because Peter did was not rooted down. Sometimes we assume things and we are easy to give up. We are easy to blame others and fall into unbelief. When we listen to the words of others and look at the reality, we are easy to be shaken. We must change this.
This is a confession of a pastor’s wife that I know. The pastor and his wife had to found a church. Because the pastor used to be an assistant pastor, his wife had to work here in there to support the kids. But now, the assistant pastor had to found a church. At that time, the wife concentrated in prayer. She gave the money she earned through her part-time job as an offering and carried out her personal worship to God for three days in concentration. She entrusted everything to God and prayed for a new church. She confessed to God that she would go out and evangelize in the field. She grabbed hold of God's covenant and concentrated in prayer. By God’s grace, the couple found a church and received amazing blessings from God. They received answers from their concentrated prayers. If you experience this, you can find your personal method and flow. I hope you and I will have this blessing.
2. How must we give personal worship?
(1) Focus on the Sunday pulpit message. (Ac. 2:42-47)
(2) Receive all answers within deep prayer. (2 Co. 12:1-10)
(3) Create your own flow. (Ac. 3:1, 16:13)
How must we give personal worship? The key is the time of concentration. What you concentrate on is very important. We must concentrate on God's Word. Then the Holy Spirit will bound to work because God's Word is alive and active. When we focus on God's Word, God’s Spirit works in us. On the other hand, if we focus on something else other than God's Word, different kind of spirit comes upon us. We can have the quickest experience of this when we focus on the Sunday pulpit message. When you grab hold of the pulpit message and concentrate in prayer, you will receive answers. When the answers accumulate, you can find your own message, system, and flow.
The early church focused on the pulpit message. They gave worship, prayed, and commemorated according to the teachings of the apostles. If you are able to do this, you will be successful in your life. You will receive all answers within the pulpit message. The Apostle Paul had a weakness. He had a chronic disease. He concentrated in prayer because he wanted to get rid of the disease. Then God answered. God didn't get rid of the disease, instead, He gave him a solution. Because Paul received a lot of grace, God didn't want him to become arrogant and that is why God allowed him to have the disease. So that at his weakest state, he can rely on God's power. That was the solution. Do not be quick to assuming things; please find the solution in God's Word. Then you'll be able to find important blessings and the flow. To do the scheduled worship, Peter went to the temple. Many miracles of healing took place. They happened because Peter continued to carry out his personal time of worship. I hope having scheduled worship, personal worship, and summit time will become your nature. If you go into that flow of life, you will experience unexpected blessings and power. God wants us to enjoy this lifestyle. God wants to meet us. I hope all the Remnants, lay leaders, and the congregation will be in this blessing. Inside of this is the life success. Inside of this is the answer to our walk of faith. I hope you challenge to receive this blessing.
3. What do you gain through summit time?
(1) You can organize your thoughts and mind within faith. (Ac. 16:25)
(2) You can win only if you gain new strength. (Ac. 1:8)
(3) You can conquer and rule the future. (Dan. 6:10, 10:10-14)
Lastly, what do we gain through summit time? First, we receive healing. Our physical body is healed. What kind of healing is more important? The true healing comes when we organize our thoughts and mind in faith. Often times, we struggle with internal conflicts. Because of the conflicts, we let ourselves and others down. Therefore, when we can organize our thoughts and mind in God's covenant, answers are bound to come. Even if you do good deeds and pray in tears, things might not work out. Our thoughts are still anxious and we feel uncomfortable. That’s why we don't receive true answers. Our thoughts and mind should be organized in whatever situation we face. Only then, you'll receive blessings and miracles will arise.
In Acts 16, the Apostle Paul evangelized and healed the demon-possessed servant girl. Although that is praiseworthy, people put Paul in prison because now they cannot earn any more money through the demon-possessed servant girl. Paul was beaten up and he was knocked out in the prison. However, Paul's thoughts and mind were well organized. Average people would think, "I did what God wanted, but why am I beaten up and imprisoned?" Even worse, Paul's disciple, Silas, was there with him when he was beaten up. While they were evangelizing together, the event occurred and Paul was imprisoned. If I were Paul I would be embarrassed to say that God blesses those who does His work. However, Paul, while having his personal time of worship, organized his thoughts and mind. It doesn't mean that Paul was ignoring the situation. He realized that he should have already been dead, but by God’s grace, he was privileged to share the Gospel. He realized that he is following after the steps of Jesus Christ who was also persecuted for doing God’s work. He was thankful. So he praised God. He sang joyful songs and prayed to God. After organizing his thoughts and mind, he received tremendous strength. At that time, God raised miracles. The door of the prison opened. Also Paul was able to share the Gospel to the people who work at the prison. They become important members who established the church of Philippi. Paul realized God' grace in the midst of his trial. He gained strength from God. With that strength you can overcome any problem. It is the power to go to the ends of the world.
Also, you can conquer and rule the future if you receive God's grace and strength. You will be placed to the seat of summit. Today's Scripture was about Daniel. Daniel already knew the new law that has been passed. If he worshiped other gods beside the king, he would lose his job and be executed. However, Daniel carried out his scheduled personal worship like before. He gave a worship of thanksgiving. At that time, Jesus raised a miracle. He made Daniel victorious in the future. Without fighting, Daniel was completely victorious over the enemies who passed the law. In Daniel 10, Daniel enjoyed something even more amazing. God's message was upon Daniel who enjoyed scheduled worship, personal worship, and summit time. "Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding into humble yourself before your God, your words will heard, and I have come in response to them." In the end of Daniel chapter 10, God said He would tell Daniel about the things that will occur in the future. God blessed Daniel to prepare for the future. Daniel was able to conquer the future as a summit. Likewise, summit time and personal worship are very important and they bear important results. I hope your life will be like this. Have your time of personal worship.
<Conc> Those who have their summit time will become the main figure of God’s time schedule. (7 Remnants of the Bible)
Let’s come to a conclusion. Those who have their summit time will become the main figure of God’s time schedule. You will absolutely be successful. All the important figures of the Bible enjoyed this blessing. Especially the seven Remnants were the model of this blessing. "Because Jehovah was with Joseph," "Moses, I will be with you always," "wherever you go, I will be with you," "The boy Samuel continued to grow in stature and in favor with the Lord and with people." The Prophet Isaiah shared God's message that he experienced. "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand." God who was with Elisha, Elijah, the early church, and Paul is knocking on the door of your heart right now. "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me." I hope you will be able to share important things with God. I hope all the Remnants and the congregation would enjoy summit time. As sons of God, have time to meet the Father God. Have a personal time to meet God one on one. Then surely you will be able to move the universe.
Let us pray. Dear Almighty God, thank You for being our Father. Thank You for letting us know how to be victorious in our walk of faith. Help us to set aside a personal time to be with You. Help us to be filled with the true joy, and I pray that Your will be done. Help us to mobilize everything with God who created the heavens and the earth. We pray in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.