Tag Archives: pride

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.

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REVIVAL

4 Mar

Sermon Notes of Pastor Hanna Handojo at Bethany International Service, Sunday, 1 March 2015, summarized by Sister Stella Ho and edited by Brother Gilbert Khoo

Revival is not a big crusade or mere evangelistic meetings.

Revival is when the people of God pray seriously and sincerely with perseverance to shake the heavens so that the will of God will happen on this Earth. It will transform the city or nation, as The Holy Spirit will be convicting the people of their sins even without any preaching.

Pastor Duncan, a Scottish pastor, in his book “the uniqueness of revival” he was mentioning about grandma Peggy, 84 years old and her burden to bring the people on her island to know Jesus Christ.

Grandma Peggy had a dream and she conveyed it her church pastor that she saw many people coming.

Her church pastor agreed to gather the leaders of the church to pray twice a week

And without anybody inviting the prayer group grew larger. The Holy Spirit Himself touched and convicted the people of their sins. Everyone was under the strong conviction of the Holy Spirit and the church was overflowing with people.

What started as a 3-day evangelistic meeting continued for 10 years!

It is important for us that Jesus is our all in all.

For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour my Spirit upon your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants. They shall spring up among the grass like willows by flowing streams. This one will say, ‘I am the Lord’s, ’

another will call on the name of Jacob, and another will write on his hand, ‘The Lord’s, ’

and name himself by the name of Israel (Isaiah 44:3-5)

Today, the whole world is gripped with fear and looking for solutions and we as believers we have Jesus as our security. God allows this situation to happen for the world to turn to Jesus.

Do we have compassion for those who are yet to be saved?  Are we longing to see God’s glory moving tremendously in these last days?

Check ourselves do we posses the compulsory qualities:

  1. Genuine fear of the Lord

It is important to have genuine fear of the Lord.

  1. Conviction of our personal sins

We must not let our hearts become numb such that we no longer feel anything when we sin against God. We should be ashamed when we sinned to be spiritually healthy.

The choice is in our hands.

Don’t pretend to be holy; we need to do a spiritual check against the Bible.

  1. Genuine Holiness

Are we willing to learn under the greatest Teachers Jesus and the Holy Spirit?

Do we love holiness?  Don’t live a double life. “Be Holy for I am Holy.” (1 Peter 1:16) Without holiness we cannot see the Lord.

  1. Repentance

Many churches do not want to talk about Repentance.

In Matthew: John the Baptist ministry focused on the repentance for the kingdom of God is at hand. The book of revelation also closes with the message of repentance to the 7 churches, 5 churches were rebuked.

a. The church of Ephesians: left even lost their first love to Jesus. Is our love for God increasing?  Go back to our first love to Jesus.

After the rebukes there is always this message: “Those who have ears, let them hear what the Holy Spirit says”

b. Church of Pergamum: wrong doctrine

The Moabites women enticed the men of Israel so that the Israelites compromised to worship other God. Don’t minimize the meaning of the Cross

c. The church of Thyatira: immorality, adultery. Stop making excuses or even fooling God. “… and you may be sure that your sin will find you out.” (Numbers 32:23). Run away from temptation like Joseph.

The enemies try to destroy us at all cost: let us be grieving of what grieves the Heart of God

d. The church of Sardis: wake up, strengthens the things which remain, actually you are dead revelations 3

What things are still alive in our life or is it Jesus that is living in our life?

e. The church in Laodicea: a lukewarm church, neither hot nor cold. We need to be on fire for God.

Are we like one of these churches?

5 warnings were presented to us; how is our spiritual life condition today?

It is important to return to the ways of the Lord and search our hearts be strong in the Lord in order to withstand the challenges, trials, and shaking we are going to face in the near future.

We are encourage to ponder and reflect upon Proverbs 6:16-18.

16 These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: 17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, 18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief.

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ARE YOU HUMBLE ENOUGH TO BE CARE-FREE

19 Sep

ARE YOU HUMBLE ENOUGH TO BE CARE-FREE? by John Piper

1 Peter 5:5–7

You younger men, likewise, be subject to your elders; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety upon Him, because he cares for you.

Introduction

Humility is not a popular human trait in the modern world. It’s not touted in the talk shows or celebrated in valedictorian speeches or commended in diversity seminars or listed with core values. And if you go to the massive self-help section of B. Dalton’s or Barnes and Noble you won’t find books on humility.

The basic reason for this is not hard to find: humility can only survive in the presence of God. When God goes, humility goes. In fact you might say that humility follows God like a shadow. We can expect to find humility applauded in our society as often as we find God applauded—which means almost never.

In September (12th) the Star Tribune carried a guest editorial that captured the atmosphere that asphyxiates humility:

There are some who naïvely cling to the nostalgic memory of God. The average churchgoer takes a few hours out of the week to experience the sacred . . . But the rest of the time, he is immersed in a society that no longer acknowledges God as an omniscient and omnipotent force to be loved and worshiped. . . Today we are too sophisticated for God. We can stand on our own; we are prepared and ready to choose and define our own existence.

In this atmosphere humility cannot survive. It disappears with God. When God is neglected, the runner up god takes his place, namely, man. And that by definition is the opposite of humility, namely, pride.

So the atmosphere we breathe is hostile to humility. And this text is utterly foreign to our times and utterly necessary. If what is said here doesn’t take root in our lives, we will not be a Christian church; and we will not be salt and light for a perishing world.

Humility Is Essential to the Christian Life

The main point of this passage is that we Christians should be humble people. Three times the command comes in one form or another.

  1. Verse 5a: “Younger men, be subject [i.e., be humble toward] to your elders.”
  2. Verse 5b: “All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another.”
  3. Verse 6: “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God.”

 

So the main point is plain in these three verses: humility is essential in the life of a Christian. It is a defining mark of a true Christian.

Four Incentives for Humility

So Peter also gives reasons or incentives—at least four.

  1. Verse 5b: “God is opposed to the proud.” Nothing could be worse than to have an infinitely powerful and holy God opposed to you. So don’t be proud.
  2. Verse 5b: “God gives grace to the humble.” And nothing could be better than to have an infinitely powerful and wise God treat us graciously. He does that to the humble. The reason is not that humility is a performance of virtue that earns grace but that humility is a confession of emptiness that receives grace. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  3. Verse 6: God will use his mighty hand to exalt the humble: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time.”
  4. Verse 7: God will use his mighty hand to care for the humble: “Casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you.”

 

Be a humble person because, if you are proud, God will be against you in your pride, but if you are humble he will give you grace, exalt you in due time, and care for you along the way so that you don’t have to be anxious.

Two Questions

That’s the basic message of the text. Now how shall it take root in our minds and hearts and make a powerful difference in the way we live to God’s honor? Let me try to make it sink deeper into us by asking two questions:

  1. What is pride and humility?
  2. What is the connection between humility and not being anxious?

 

How Do Humility and Not Being Anxious Relate?

I’ll start with the second one. Did you notice (in the NASB) the grammatical connection between verses 6 and 7? “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, 7 casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you.” It’s not merely a new sentence. It’s a subordinate clause. “Humble yourselves . . . casting your anxieties on him.” I think this means that casting your anxieties on God is an expression of humility. It’s like saying, “Eat politely . . . chewing with your mouth shut.” “Drive carefully . . . keeping your eyes open.” “Be generous . . . inviting someone over on Thanksgiving.”

“Humble yourselves . . . casting your anxieties on God.” One way to be humble is to cast your anxieties on God. Which means that one hindrance to casting your anxieties on God is pride. Which means that undue worry about your future is probably a form of pride.

Now there is more to say about that. But to feel the full force of it we need to answer the first question, and then come back to this connection between pride and anxiety.

What Is Pride and Humility?

The second question was, What is pride and humility?

I’ll try to answer that with ten biblical observations about pride. Humility is the opposite.

1. Pride Is Self-Satisfaction

God says to Israel in Hosea 13:4–6,

I have been the Lord your God since the land of Egypt . . . 5 I cared for you in the wilderness, in the land of drought. 6 As they had their pasture, they became satisfied, and being satisfied, their heart became proud; therefore, they forgot Me. (Cf. Jeremiah 49:4.)

2. Pride Is Self-Sufficiency and Self- Reliance

Moses warns the people of God in Deuteronomy 8:11–17 about what will happen when they have rest in the promised land:

Beware . . . 12 lest, when you have eaten and are satisfied, and have built good houses and lived in them, 13 and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and gold multiply . . . 14 then your heart becomes proud, and you forget the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt . . . [and you] 17 say in your heart, “My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.”

God’s goodness is turned into self-sufficiency.

3. Pride Considers Itself Above Instruction

In Jeremiah 13:9–10 God says to the people of Judah,

I will destroy the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem. 10 This wicked people, who refuse to listen to My words, who walk in the stubbornness of their hearts.

Pride stubbornly refuses to be taught the way of God, and makes its own wishes the measure of truth.

4. Pride Is Insubordinate

Psalm 119:21 says,

Thou dost rebuke the arrogant, the cursed who wander from Thy commandments.

When the commandments of God are spoken, pride turns away and will not submit. It rejects the right and authority of God to command.

5. Pride Takes Credit for What God Alone Does

One of the most vivid illustrations of this is the case of Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon.

[Nebuchadnezzar said], “Is this not Babylon the great, which I myself have built as a royal residence by the might of my power and for the glory of my majesty?” 31 While the word was in the king’s mouth, a voice came from heaven, saying, “King Nebuchadnezzar . . . sovereignty has been removed from you . . . 32 until you recognize that the Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind, and bestows it on whomever He wishes.” (Daniel 4:30– 32)

Then, after his season of humiliation grazing in the fields like and ox, Nebuchadnezzar is restored and confesses,

Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise, exalt, and honor the King of heaven, for all His works are true and His ways just, and He is able to humble those who walk in pride. (Daniel 4:37; cf. Isaiah 10:12)

6. Pride Exults in Being Made Much Of

Jesus indicted the religious leaders in Jerusalem:

And they love the place of honor at banquets, and the chief seats in the synagogues, 7 and respectful greetings in the market places, and being called by men, Rabbi. (Matthew 23:6)

7. Pride Aspires to the Place of God

In our family devotions we just read the story of Herod’s pride in Acts 12:

And on an appointed day Herod, having put on his royal apparel, took his seat on the rostrum and began delivering an address to them. 22 And the people kept crying out, “The voice of a god and not of a man!” 23 And immediately an angel of the Lord struck him because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and died. (Acts 12:21–23; cf. Isaiah 14:12–14)

8. Pride Opposes the Very Existence of God

Psalm 10:4:

The wicked, in the haughtiness of his countenance, does not seek [God]. All his thoughts are, “There is no God.”

Pride knows that the simplest solution for its own survival would be that there be no God at all. That would be, as the Nazi’s might say, “The Final Solution” for the survival of pride.

It doesn’t come as any surprise then that . . .

9. Pride Refuses to Trust in God

Proverbs 28:25 contrasts arrogance and trust:

An arrogant man stirs up strife, but he who trusts in the Lord will prosper.

Pride cannot trust God. The posture of trust is too weak. Too dependent. It calls too much attention to the strength and wisdom of another. Trusting God is the heartbeat of humility, the opposite of pride.

When pride keeps us from trusting in God to take care of us, there are two possibilities: one is that we feel a false security based on our own imagined power and shrewdness to avert catastrophe. The other is that we realize that we cannot guarantee our security, and so we feel anxious.

Which brings us to the tenth trait of pride and the final explanation about the connection between 1 Peter 5:6 and 7.

10. Pride Is Anxious About the Future

In Isaiah 51:12–13 God says to anxious Israel that their problem is pride.

I, even I, am He who comforts you. Who are you that you are afraid of man who dies, and of the son of man who is made like grass; 13 that you have forgotten the Lord your Maker?

Who do you think you are to be afraid? Sounds strange, doesn’t it? But that’s how subtle pride is. Pride is the root of our anxiety.

The Full Force of 1 Peter 5:6–7

Now we can see clearly and feel the force of 1 Peter 5:6–7,

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time . . .

How? In what way shall you humble yourselves? Answer (v. 7): by “casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you.” In other words, the humblest thing in the world is to do what 1 Peter 4:19 says, “Entrust your soul to a faithful Creator.” Casting your anxieties on God means trusting the promise that he cares for you and has the power and the wisdom to put that care to work in the most glorious way.

That trust is the opposite of pride. It’s the essence of humility. It’s the confidence that the mighty hand of God is not over you to crush you but to care for you just like the promise says. Don’t be proud, but cast your anxieties on him because he will care for you.

Whenever your heart starts to be anxious about the future, preach to your heart and say, “Heart, who do you think you are to be afraid of the future and nullify the promise of God? No, heart, I will not exalt myself with anxiety. I will humble myself in peace and joy as I trust this precious and great promise of God—he cares for me.

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