Sunday Morning – 1 Apr 2018 11:21:36 am – Pastor James Yang
Today is Easter Sunday; but when I go to the shopping centre, I see rabbits and bunnies. I have no idea why Jesus is not promoted but Easter bunnies are promoted.
After I received salvation when I was 21 years old, I came to understand the Word of God. Then I could have this ultimate satisfaction and was deep, profound and true. Until then I never had such satisfaction. Folks, let us see what we are made of.
“And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”
Genesis 2:7 NKJV
Man used two ingredients to make mankind. First is the ground and second is the Spirit. Thus, for mankind to be satisfied, we need to satisfy the things of the flesh such as hunger (food) and tiredness (sleep). However, there is also the need to satisfy our heart. This is why the bible says that heavenly things need to come down to us.
Folks, can marrying a beautiful person satisfy your heart? Or if you increase your material wealth, does it increase your satisfaction? No! The heavenly things must come and then you can be satisfied in your heart.
A long time ago, a war broke out in Korea. There was a man called John. He is Korean but is an American citizen. The US back then helped South Korea in the war. In the war, he broke his arm and his leg. He became disabled. As he returned to the US, he could not help but think – “Will my girlfriend love me the same?”, “Will my friends accept me?” And he concluded that the answer was no. But he had hope in his mother. But as he journeyed and came to LA airport, he had fallen deeper into his thoughts.
He called his mother. “Mother, it’s me, John”, John said.
“Oh, my dear John, where are you?”, the mother exclaimed in a very excited tone.
“Oh, Mum, I am with my friend at the moment”, John said.
“Mum, I have a friend who has lost his right eye, leg and right arm. He is with me and has no family. Can he stay with us?”, John asked.
The mother said that he had become very emotional during the war. Then she began to say how inconvenient it would be for them to look after the friend.
John hung up the phone and he concluded that his mother disliked him. He concluded that he should die. And do he committed suicide and jumped off the hotel and died.
The mother on the hand, unknowing of what has happened, was very eager and excited to see her son on the next day. She cleaned his room, ironed his shirt, and made food that John loved. She was so happy. She could not wait to see her. All night long, she was too excited to sleep. The mother was so happy. Because she had always been listening to how soldiers in the Korean War died. She was thus so happy to hear from her son who was alive.
On the following day, at 10am, she got a call. It was not John’s voice. It was a formal, husky and authoritative voice. “Ma’am, your son has fallen to death. We believe it is your son. Would you please come and confirm?”, the police officer said. She nearly lost her consciousness.
She raced to the spot with her heart in chaos, in despair, unwilling to accept the news. As she reached the site of the incident, she flipped open the white sheet, and saw the dead person. And indeed it was. It was John, her son.
“John!!!! My John!!!! My only son!! Why did you not say this was you??? Why? Why? Why? If only you had told me, I would have become your eye, your arm and your leg. I would have boasted you proudly before my friends because you defended your country and fought for it.”, she cried her eyes out.
And so this is the story of John, who’s heart and his mother’s heart were significantly different.
Now in Luke 24, two disciples were travelling to Emmaus and they were so saddened by the fact that Jesus died. Their heart and the heart of Jesus Christ were not the same.
For God, there is no difference as to whether one is dead or alive. God said to Ezekiel once to speak to the dry bones that they would live and indeed the flesh and muscles came about and the bones so lived.
Abraham had a child when he was 100 and Sarah his wife was 90 years old. If you were 90 and you were found to be pregnant, would you be happy or worried?
There is a way God works.
“(as it is written, “I have made you a father of many nations”) in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did;”
Romans 4:17 NKJV
For God, He calls those things that do not exist as if they do.
One day, God spoke through an angel to Mary that she would have a son, although she was a virgin. Mary was shocked. It was not possible at all humanistically. But the angel said this “With God, nothing is impossible”.
When we believe in God, it means we believe that God can do anything.
For Christians, Easter is very important. Without the resurrection of Jesus, it is useless to believe in God.
So why did Jesus resurrect? It is because He paid for our sins.
A long time ago, by accident while driving, one of our elders had killed a child in a car accident. Because of this he had to go to jail. I am not sure how long he served but when his term finished, he was released. Why was he released? Because he had paid the price! Likewise, Jesus resurrected because the price of sin was paid for.
If you really believe that Jesus has washed away your sins of the past, present and future, then you have no more sins, and you can well say that you have no more sins.
Had John called his mother and said, “Mum, it’s me John. I am in the airport at the moment. Mum, in the war, I stepped on the landmine and so I lost my eye, leg and arm. My girlfriend and friends have now forsaken me. Mum, you are the most important to me, but in my thought, I feel that you will despise and forsake me too. What do you think?” And the mum would have most likely said, “Son, stay put right there! I am coming now!” And she would come and comfort him and promise that she would still love him forever. But since John hid his heart, and was dragged by his thought, John died.
Our thought is the enemy towards God.
There are people who follow their thoughts and there are people who follow the Words of God.
What does the Words of God say?
“who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification.”
Romans 4:25 NKJV
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.”
I Corinthians 6:9-11 NKJV
Through the eyes of God, we have been justified, washed, and sanctified. However, many people misinterpret the bible and try to be washed with their own effort. They try to be justified by themselves. They also completely ignore what Jesus has done for them.
Jesus has done everything to take care of our sins and this is why He says “You are washed, justified and sanctified.” He has prepared it and done it and finished it. This is why He can say that we are perfect.
The two disciples were heading to Emmaus. But as they met Jesus, they could return to Jerusalem. If you follow your thought, you will go a way that is completely different to the thoughts of God.
The Holy Spirit comes upon those who have received the Word of salvation of Jesus Christ. So how can it come?
“Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 2:38 NKJV
If you receive the remission of sins through the name of Jesus Christ, then the Holy Spirit comes upon you.
If you still have sins left in you, then the Holy Spirit cannot dwell in you.
In the books of Acts, there was a man named Cornelius. He gave alms generously and he prayed always. However, the Holy Spirit was missing in him. So God sent Peter to him to preach the gospel.
“And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead. To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.” While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word. And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.”
Acts 10:42-45 NKJV
In the heart of the people who received the remission of sins, then the Holy Spirit comes upon you as a gift. So many people do not know this procedure as to how to receive the Holy Spirit. Some say that they fasted for many days and nights and God came to them. Some say they prayed so hard and the Holy Spirit came upon them. These facts are not biblical at all.
Once we have received the forgiveness of sins in our heart, then the Holy Spirit comes upon us. Once the Holy Spirit comes upon you, then the Holy Spirit will guide you and testify of the Lord through you. You will experience great works of the Holy Spirit.
There are many people who are confined in diseases these days. Who are the ones who fall sick?
“Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.” When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.”
John 11:3-5 NKJV
It is written here, “..the one whom You [Jesus] loves…”
Then the heart of God will be connected to your heart.
I believe that the Word will lead you to the true perfect state.