Tag Archives: church

CHALLENGES FOR EVANGELISM

6 Jul

The Summary of Sermon by Ps. Djohan Handojo at Bethany International Sevice on Sunday, 2 July 2017.

CHALLENGES FOR EVANGELISM

Pastor Djohan recently attended a conference at Wittenburg in Germany where the Reformation started by Martin Luther. 

The conference discussed how to bring the Gospel for every person and challenges in sharing it. The gospel brings freedom and transforms life. 

In sharing the gospel today, we faced several challenges :-

 1. Ideology 

People do not believe in God. 40% of the people in the Western world become atheist. They do not find God important in their lives.
2. Secularism  

People look into the world and there is less emphasis of God in the society. In South East Asia, many people still have strong faith in God. We still find Christian schools, many Church services in the malls and hotels.

3. Moral 

Today sexual disorder is considered normal and acceptable especially in the western world. The government in America and other western countries legalized the same-sex marriage. Even the schools are teaching it and educate the right to develop love and feelings beyond the gender which is gender disorientation.

(
James 1: 2-3) The world is constantly under temptation by the devil. Only the kingdom of God is unshakeable. 

We are dealing with self centeredness. People have the tendency to become self centered. Some of us struggle with sin but Jesus is waiting for us to come back when we have gone astray in the world. 
(2 Corinthians 5: 17-18) We are the new creation in Christ. It is important for us to walk in Christ every day. God will see us in a different way, God will see Christ who has redeemed us and see us as a new man or new woman in Christ.

When we are still living in the old self, the devil can attack us. When we live as a new man in Christ, the
devil cannot attack us. However, we can live a victorious life because God is in us.

(1 Corinthians 6 : 2 – 3)  For us as believers, one day, we will reign and rule with Jesus. We will judge the world and the fallen angels. 

Now, the Holy Spirit is in the world but one day the Holy Spirit will be taken away from the world. The world will turn into chaos.
(John 6:54- 55) Whoever eat of my flesh and drink of my blood remains in me, have the salvation and eternal life.

HOLY SPIRIT

28 May

Summary of the Sermon by Senior Pastor Djohan Handojo, at Bethany International Service, on Sunday, 21 May 2017.

HOLY SPIRIT

We are entering into the week of Pentecost. When Jesus was on earth He was led by the Holy Spirit. Today we will learn about the ministry of Jesus in the various historical places in Israel, and its significance relating to the Holy Spirit.

1. Jordan River – Be Filled with the Holy Spirit
The Jordan River is a very fertile river. Naaman, a captain in the army of king of Aram was cured at the Jordan River. Many people, including Jesus, were baptised at that river. Jordan River talks about being filled with the Holy Spirit. In Romans 6:23, the Bible tells us that, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Jesus obeyed God the Father and was baptised at the Jordan River. When He was baptised, the Heavens opened, and the Holy Spirit descended as a dove and lighting on Him, and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.”

In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory. (Ephesians 1:13-14)

We become the legal sons and daughters of God as we are sealed with Jesus.

There are many symbols of the Holy Spirit. For example –
a. water – symbolizes cleansing and is needed by every living thing
b. fire – symbolizes light which is needed for life, purification
c. oil – symbolizes healing and anointing
d. wind – symbolizes God is omnipresent

2. Judean Desert – Led by the Holy Spirit
The world is a place of temptation. In today’s modern world, we are tempted in many ways, including entertainment, games and self-indulgences that turn us away from God. Don’t let the devil tempt us. We are sealed by Jesus and let us draw near to God and resist the devil. We need to control our minds so that we don’t live like the world. Jesus was tempted by the devil three times, but each time Jesus replied with the Word of God. We need the guidance of the Holy Spirit as we go through our daily lives.

3. Nazareth – Empowered by the Holy Spirit
Jesus grew up in Nazareth and He was trained there. We need to raise our spiritual Nazarites (our children or spiritual children) and train them in the ways of God. Everyone who serves the Lord needs to be filled with the Holy Spirit. We need to learn to be led and empowered by the Holy Spirit and not depend on our own strength. We need to build an altar at our home to worship the Lord.

4. Capernaum – The Power of the Holy Spirit and Sharing the Good News
Capernaum was Jesus’ town and the centre of His activities in Galilee. It was the place where the Gospel was spread to many. Although many of the people were fishermen and farmers, yet the Gospel was received openly. The Holy Spirit will empower us to share the good news with people, even if we have difficulty sharing the Gospel. Trust and lean on the Holy Spirit as we share the good news to others.

5. Sea of Galilee – The Power of the Holy Spirit Brings Healing & Miracles
And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.” (Luke 24:49)

We need to have radical obedience to the Holy Spirit in order to be equipped and anointed to do the will of God. When we obey the Holy Spirit, God can use us to bring healing and miracles to those who need it. The apostles of Jesus brought healing and miracles wherever they went as they were filled with the Holy Spirit. Just like a fan which needs electricity to operate, healing and miracles need power from the Holy Spirit.

6. Upper Room Jerusalem – Wait Upon the Holy Spirit to Receive Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Some of us may not be baptised by the Holy Spirit and we need to be obedient to follow the Lord. The early disciples of Jesus obeyed Jesus to wait for the Holy Spirit in Jerusalem.

The Holy Spirit is a Person. Let us learn how to trust and lean upon the guidance of the Holy Spirit in our lives that we may shine for God and bring an impact to our families, communities, cities and the nation.

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CALL HIS NAME!

30 Oct

CALL HIS NAME!

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

When in trouble, when in his weakness, as there is no way, that’s most appropriate moment for us to experience the power of God working incredible, because human is no longer reliable. But at a time when there are two options that can be done:

  1. Running from reality. Humans are too selfish to raise their own strength and underestimated the power of God often do this when they are in trouble, when in weakness, when there are no roads. They will blame anything that can be blamed for self-justification. Because egoism they look for a shortcut to run away from reality.
  2. Humbling to come to Jesus and cry out to Him. It’s no easy to be able to come to God with a humble heart and sign of surrender to God on his knees. This step requires self-denial, self-discharge, which means we should be the dominant human spirit and our physical human beings should be increasingly lost. For only by the Holy Spirit, we will be able to kneel, bow down to worship and called out the name of Jesus.

Then the Lord to whom we called out His name will not stay silent, He will deliver us from the evil plans that come out from our mouths to glorify God’s name.

Will you call out His name called not only when distress? But also to continue to worship and praise God in all circumstances and He will deliver not only us but we defend like the apple of His eye alone will never let us be touched at all by the evil and influence.

TODAY’S WORD: Psalm 34:16-23, NKJV

16 The face of the Lord is against those who do evil, To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth. 17 The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles. 18 The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit. 19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them all. 20 He guards all his bones; Not one of them is broken. 21 Evil shall slay the wicked, And those who hate the righteous shall be condemned. 22 The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.” (Psalm 50:15)

TODAY’S ACTION:

Cried out to God not to shout in a loud voice, for God’s ear is no less sharp to hear. Crying out can be done with the earnest prayer of faith in the Lord by directly surrender to Him then He will definitely give the best for us.

TODAY’S QUOTE:

God wants you to involve Him in every aspect of your life.

[Taken from Today’s Word by Ps Djohan Handojo and Team]

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: 2 Timothy 4

Night: Jeremiah 20-21

THE BLESSINGS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN OUR LIVES

29 Oct

Excerpt from the Sermon by Pastor Dr Vincent Leoh, Senior Pastor of Glad Tidings Assembly of God, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia – Ministering at Bethany International Service, Sun, 25 Oct 2015. Summarised by Sister Stella Ho and Sister Susy.

THE BLESSINGS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN OUR LIVES

We are living in ever changing circumstances. This year, 2015, is a year of multiplied miracles.  In order for us to experience miracles in our life, we need the Holy Spirit.  The life and ministry of Jesus Christ was filled by the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus started His ministry after the Holy Spirit anointed Him.

The greatest miracle is from within when we are born again through the Holy Spirit.  Christian life is meant to be a supernatural life in the Holy Spirit.  Many important aspects of the Holy Spirit are found in the book of John.

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you (John 14:16-18).

John refered to the Holy Spirit as the “Paraclete” (A Greek word) – the blessings of the Holy Spirit.

“Parakletos” means somebody who is called alongside to be with the people of God.

A “paraclete” is one who comforts, cheers, encourages, strengthens and empowers.

What are the blessings of the Holy Spirit?

Blessings of the Holy Spirit

  1. The Blessing of His Person: Helper

Somebody who is exactly like Jesus, speaks of another of the same kind (allos).

“Parakletos” is not used anywhere else in the Bible, only in the book of John.  Therefore the Holy Spirit can be our Intercessor, Mediator, Counselor, Comforter Advocate and Friend.

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever (John 14:16).

The Holy Spirit is God and He is a Person.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble (Psalms 46:1).

Talk to the Holy Spirit daily and proactively in order for Him to help us.  He is our helper and friend.  The Holy Spirit is your best friend.  Don’t Facebook your problems but “Face God” and let the Holy Spirit help us in our struggles and in every situation.

  1. The Blessing of His Presence: Indwelling

The Holy Spirit has come to dwell within us.  We will never be alone.  We can commune with the Holy Spirit within us.  Learn to connect with the Holy Spirit.

Even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you (John 14:17).

  1. The Blessing of His Purpose: Instruction

The Holy Spirit teaches us and guides us in God’s will.  A great deal of our ineffectiveness can be attributed to ignoring the Holy Spirit (Oswald Sander).  His guidance is so real and we will become effective Christians.  Ask for the guidance of the Holy Spirit for whatever decisions we make.

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you (John 14:26).

  1. The Blessing of His Power: Impact

The Holy Spirit is our Source of Power. Life’s problems consume a lot of power.  It drains our energy, depletes our courage and we lose our patience.  The pressure of people around us gets us down and problems stir us up.  The power of the Holy Spirit will lift our spirit more than we can ever imagine.

“You heard that I said to you, ‘I go away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved Me, you would have rejoiced because I go to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. Now I have told you before it happens, so that when it happens, you may believe. I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me; but so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me. Get up, let us go from here” (John14:28-31).

There are 44 things that the Holy Spirit can do for us – written by Bruce Edwards.

How do we receive the blessings of the Holy Spirit?

❖ Love Jesus (John 14:15): “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”

❖ Obey Him (John14:21): Yield to the Holy Spirit and He will surely come.

❖ Seek Him (John 15:27): Desire for Him, wait upon Him.

❖ Depend on Him (John 14:17): Make the Holy Spirit not only the resident in our heart but the president of our life. The Holy Spirit directs our lives.

We cannot do without the Holy Spirit in this world.  The work of the Holy Spirit is vital to our faith individually and corporately.  Who do we go to when we face problems?  Do not forget the Trinity of God.  Do not settle for 2/3 of God (Father and Jesus only).  They are called Bi-tarians rather than Trinitarians.  We should not only know God and Jesus; we must also engage the Holy Spirit in our life.  Do we know the Holy Spirit, how familiar are we with the Holy Spirit?

Pray in the Spirit, honor the Holy Spirit and He will grant you the rewards of faith.  A person controlled by the Holy Spirit is unconquerable (Pastor Reinhard Bonnke).  We shall have the victory. Be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows (Psalm 23:5).

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IN GOD ONLY

30 Jun

IN GOD ONLY

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

The Word of God in Philippians 2:13 says that it is from God only that all good deeds in the world came from. Therefore, no single person in this world can do good deeds if he does not know God who is full of love and kindness.

A child who was born and lived in a tough neighbourhood and every day see their parents living in violence and crime, this child will come out as a though and nasty person until he finds and gets along with a personal who is soft and loving heart. Meanwhile, a child who was born and lived in a loving environment and every day see his parent live in goodness and do good, that child will become a nice person.

So it is clear that good works cannot be tried or made, because if people try to do good deeds without the spirit of God, then the circumstances or experienced by the Apostle Paul as record in Romans 7:14 will occur to us to be much worse. When the apostle Paul, who was trying to do good deeds with his own strength, sin always makes him do things that was not good, not understood or meant by him, because there is no good thing that can be relied upon in sinful life of human flesh. But only by the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the apostle Paul could be release and freed from the prison of sin that bound him.

Therefore, Paul writes in Philippians 2:13 that only by the love and power of God’s Spirit in our lives, then we are enabled to do the deeds of love according to God’s will.

TODAY’S WORD: Romans 7:13-26, NKJV

Law Cannot Save from Sin

13 Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful. 14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15 For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. 16 If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. 17 But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. 18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. 19 For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.

21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. 22 For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified.” (Philippians 2:13)

TODAY’S ACTION:

Have you noticed that only in God alone we are enabled to do good deeds?

TODAY’S QUOTE:

Every person who has a genuine love will surely be able to do good deed with sincere, but if a person does not have a genuine love then the good deed is limited only in human vision alone.

[Taken from Today’s Word by Ps Djohan Handojo and Team]

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: Acts 10:1-23

Night: Job 17-19

Our relationship with the church and other believers

2 Apr

Sermon excerpts Pastor Niko Prajogo, 29-Mar-15

… from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love (Ephesians 4:16)

God’s Design for the church

Members of the Body is Us

– We are to be closely knitted together

– It needs each other

The hand cannot function differently from the body. The body without the hand is handicap.

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)

  1. We can help our friend to succeed. (Ecclesiastes 4:9).

We need to lead our lives with our spiritual eyes and not with our physical eyes.

Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered (Proverbs 11:25)

In life, we need someone to help us. Be in business or workplace, we are bound to need someone to help us to succeed. As the bible says in Proverbs 11:25, we will be enriched when we bring blessings to others.

  1. Help your friend in need (Ecclesiastes 4:10).

All of us make mistakes from time to time. Help them to recover from their mistakes and direct them back to the right path.

Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted (Galatians 6:1)

Jesus told the woman who committed adultery to sin no more. (John 8). Although she was to be stoned to death according to the Law of Moses, yet Jesus forgave her sins and asked her to sin no more! Jesus demonstrated God’s grace to the woman. Likewise, we are to show grace and help our friend.

  1. Give Warmth to Your Friend (Ecclesiastes 4:11)

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. (Romans 12:15). When our warmth is genuine, people will be touched and they will respond to God. Pastor Niko shared about how he invited a non-believer friend to join his COOL cell-group. Initially the friend came a few times, but after a long period of absence he decided to come again. As pastor Niko continue to encourage him, he became more regular to join the COOL. Today, he’s now a believer and hungry for the Word of God!

  1. Support Each Other in their Struggle (Ecclesiastes 4:12)

Jonathan said to the young man who carried his armor, “Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised. It may be that the Lord will work for us, for nothing can hinder the Lord from saving by many or by few.” And his armor- bearer said to him, “Do all that is in your heart. Do as you wish. Behold, I am with you heart and soul (1 Samuel 14: 6-7)

Jesus prayed for Peter. Even though Peter failed (when he denied Jesus 3 times), when he turned back to God, he brought his brethren along to God.

Let us support each other in prayer. Pray for a person this week and together we can see God working in each other’s lives!

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A WORKING CHURCH

12 Oct

A Working Church by David C. Egner

We give thanks to God always for you all, . . . remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope. —1 Thessalonians 1:2-3

My wife, Shirley, and I enjoyed a cruise along the fjords of Norway in celebration of our 50th wedding anniversary. As we journeyed northward, we stopped in numerous towns and villages, often visiting churches. Among them was a 12th-century church that our guide described proudly as “still a working church.” I asked, “What do you mean?” She referred to the days of the state church, when the state-appointed pastors simply collected their paychecks but no one attended the services. But this church had been faithfully holding worship services and actively serving the Lord for almost 1,000 years!

I immediately thought of the seven churches of Revelation 2 and 3 to whom Jesus said, “I know your works” (2:2,9,13,19; 3:1,8,15). In addition, the church of Thessalonica was commended by the apostle Paul for its “work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 1:3).

I also thought of my church at home. For more than 130 years it has been faithful in preaching and caring for its congregation and community. It is truly a “working church.” What a privilege we have if we’re part of a local body of believers where we can grow and serve our Lord!

Lord, thank You for placing us into Your family and giving us the privilege and responsibility to serve You through our churches. May we be a shining light of Your love to our communities and the world.

The church is a living body and must have working parts.

Taken from “Our Daily Bread” by RBC Ministries.