Sunday Morning – 14 Oct 2018 10:48:34 am – Pastor James Yang
When it rains, we cannot help but be wet; if hot, we will feel hot; if cold, we will feel cold; and when the disease comes, we just face it. There are very limited things we can do in our lives. But many people think otherwise and so they live a life completely different from God. That is why people live up to how much they can see. If you have seen yourself clearly, then you will know how limited and weak you are.
In Mark 4, there was a huge windstorm and the waves were tempestuous. The boat of the disciples and Jesus were almost sinking but when the disciples woke up Jesus, Jesus said, “Wind and waves, be calm” and indeed it was so. The disciples wondered who this person was that even the wind and waves obeyed him.
The more we know about Jesus, the closer we will be in the heart.
When you enter the Good News missionary school, you need to empty everything including your money, so that you can only rely on God. We were taught how to ask of God only and never to ask from people for the things we need. Because of this we obtained some very precious testimonies.
When I was in the missionary school, I could experience God tremendously. Now, my family went to the missionary school together with me. My son who was very young then always had this problem where his skin would swell tremendously when an insect bit him. I had to take him to the emergency many times (before my life as a missionary school student). As I entered missionary school, I gave all my money to the missionary school. On the following day, a brother came and knocked on the door – “Brother James, before you came here, did you bring any kind of ointment or medicine besides money?” And I had to even give up the mosquito medicine for my son. So one night, a mosquito bit my son’s ears and it swelled up like crazy. He complained, “Dad it hurts so much.” So I prayed. “Lord please heal my son’s ear” but he did not get healed. At 2am he woke me up and said, “Dad it hurts so much”. However, it was 2am and I could not wake up anyone. “Edward, come here, I will pray for you”…and he said, “Dad, you already prayed for me after dinner and I am no better”. So I said, “If I pray for you now then God would hear my prayer” and he did not even kneel down but just thruster his head forward. So I prayed, “Dear Lord”…and these two words were so sincere and so sweet. As I prayed, I gained this heart heart that “my son is not mine and even my life is not mine because I have no control over them whatsoever….” and I prayed like this and passed it all over to God.
On the following morning, my son went to school and I did the things I had to do in the missionary school such as witnessing and so on. In the evening, I was waiting in the queue to get food and someone tapped me, “Dad….look at this…” and I saw his ears, as if it was punctured and it was very flabby. When I saw and heard these words, I gained the heart that I prayed and God heard my prayer and I felt so thankful in my heart. From then on, I could feel that if I prayed then God hears my prayer.
On another occasion, one day my son had a gastro problem and he kept on having diarrhoea. For two weeks this happened. I changed hospital and there was no improvement. In the following week, I had to go to the retreat and it was not easy to leave my sick son behind. I prayed to God. I did not have peace in my heart thinking about my sick son. I fasted for three days. One day in the retreat it was about twenty to eight and it was the time when all ministers were resting. I prayed to God. “God please heal my son.” As I was praying, I felt that all the burdens I had passed on over to Jesus. I felt so peaceful in my heart. I felt that my son was healed. I truly felt that my son was healed. I thanked God. Then I went to service and after the service, we were fellowshipping with the new people who came and fellowshipped till late. From the following morning, I began to eat because in my heart I believed that my son was already healed. After I ate, I rang up the sister who was looking after our children. She said that my son was all healed now. She said that yesterday around after 7:30pm he started feeling better. I was very thankful in my heart. I felt that God was so precise.
A lot of people however do not know how weak they are and what kind of state they are in.
“And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?””
Luke 10:25 NKJV
This question is fundamentally wrong. This is because one cannot attain salvation or eternal life because of one’s accomplishment.
Spiritual life is God holding on to us. Religious life is we holding on to the hand of God. This represents deed.
A few days ago, I went to Eastwood with our church brothers. We met one accountant. I had to ask something. A church brother and an elder was with me and we went to eat together first with the accountant. I saw the accountant praying and so noted that he was a church goer. The elder told me that he goes to another church. So I preached the gospel to him vey briefly that Jesus Christ has washed away all of our sins. So the accountant asked, “so even if people commit sins, then are they still righteous?” The elder and the brother next to me said “Yes, that’s true” and the accountant was so shocked.
There was a huge difference between us and him. In his heart, he wants to try hard to gain eternal life. This is not biblical at all. Most of the religious people in the world are tied up like this asking what they should do to inherit eternal life. Thus, spiritually speaking, it means they do not have eternal life yet.
When I was young, I was taken by a friend of mine to drink beer. I felt it was like urine. I didn’t want to but my friend insisted, knowing that I was a church-goer, and he said that I could ask for forgiveness after drinking and so I went. I felt so tired of sin and going to church and so on. In my old church, I could see how all people fall asleep as soon as the pastor opens the bible.
A lot of people live but they have no idea that they are being tied up by the things of the world.
The donkey that is tied represents us. Like the donkey that is burdened, we are also burdened with the things of the world. For this reason, students study and they also feel burdened. People have so much burden in their world that they do not know why they are burdened.
Sometimes students complain to me that because of the church they are not able to do the things they and their friends want to do – party, go out, etc. So I tell them that doing the things you want is not necessarily freedom.
Now, for the donkey and the colt, they were able to enter Jerusalem. The donkey could only carry burdens of the world. But now, he carries Jesus, whose burden and yoke, as Jesus says, is easy. Carrying Jesus there is glory.
The city of Jerusalem represents heaven.
The donkey who carries Jesus represents us, who can enter heaven by carrying the blood of Jesus Christ in our hearts.
The Chinese character of righteousness has “lamb” on the top with “I” at the bottom and together, it represents righteousness. Likewise, the lamb represents Jesus Christ and the character “I” represents us. Jesus riding on us means righteousness.
“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?”
Romans 6:1-2 NKJV
The donkey was previously tied by its original owner. But now it is Jesus who is riding the donkey and in this way they both go to Jerusalem, which represents heaven.
Folks, can you even see what is going ahead of you? Have you ever had a traffic accident before? Do you plan for it in the morning? No! It just happens, right? You have no clue, isn’t it?
This same applies to couples and no one ever plans a divorce when they are getting married.
The bible tells us who we are before God.
Once you discover that there is nothing you can do by yourself, then Jesus begins to lead you. Jesus as how Jesus led the donkey, in the same manner, those who realise that they cannot do anything by themselves, in the same way, Jesus leads us.
For the woman caught in the very act of adultery (WCA), she was tied by the thought to commit adultery although she may have resisted. She may have fought it. But in the end, when the certain condition was given, she did commit adultery. In other words, we are tied by ourselves.
As Jesus met this woman, He was able to untie her. So many people were holding stones and ready to stone her. But Jesus freed her with these words – “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to cast a stone at her“ and one by one, everyone started walking away.
As soon as one Word was spoken by Jesus, she was able to be free from death. Then He stopped down and wrote on the ground again and then He Spoke “Where are those accusers of yours?” And when she replied that there was no one, He said “Neither do I condemn you”. Through this, she was free from condemnation as well.
All the things that were binding her thus made her free.
It does not matter our situation, as long as we are connected to the Word, we can be free.
In Thailand, pastor Kim told me that when he recruited volunteers, over 200 applied and about 50 of them were transgenders. So as he preached Jesus to them, they all became normal. One of the sisters who was lesbian even now lives happily married with a brother.
There are no problems in the world that cannot be fixed by Jesus. That means, all problems in the world can be fixed by Jesus. Drug addicts, alcoholics, etc. not a problem at all. But not having the Word in the heart is the key problem.
Believing in God sets us free from the condemnation and sin of the world.
The true church preaches the Word of God that sets us free. If you can receive the Word of God in your heart, then you can be free from sin and from whatever problems you have. A single Word that is given from Jesus completely freed the woman from death.
In John 4, there was a woman who lived with her 6th husband. Her life was so afflicted. And Jesus had to go through Samaria. Jesus wanted to save the woman. But Jesus was a Jew. Jews hated Samaritans because a long time ago, kings thought of Samaria as very strong and so decided to mix up the blood of Samaritans by sending in foreigners there. Thus, Jews hate it because Samaritans are mixed.
Yet, Jesus offered the fountain of the living life to her.
“Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans. Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?””
John 4:9-12 NKJV
The woman had never left the well of Jacob before. She lived with the well of Jacob but had never met the living water before.
Last night, I had a fellowship with brother Yele’s cousin. He said that what he learnt from the Cook Islands churches and what he heard from our church was too different and so he could not readily accept.
It was the same with me. I also found it so difficult to listen to the true gospel with my pre-conceptions. I was so happy that when I received the truth, I even wanted to share it with others. However, my sister refused to accept with her prior learning and thoughts.
The bible says that we ought to abandon our thoughts. With our thoughts we just cannot accept the Word of God.
Jesus said, “The water I will give you shall never make you thirst again”. The woman was so stunned and asked for it. But Jesus asked her to bring her husband. She said that she did not have any husband. But Jesus knew that the sixth person she was living with was not her true husband.
The bible says that our true husband is God. Once we meet the true husband, we can be free from whatever we are bound.
“The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men,”
John 4:28 NKJV
Something amazing happens here. She said to the men “Come and see”.
My wife, when we were in Townsville, just said to one lady “Come on” and this made the person come to the bible seminar and receive salvation. You need not be complicated or verbose. From all sins, difficulties and diseases, it does not matter but we can be free from it all through Jesus Christ.