Tag Archives: trust in God

PRAYER OF JABEZ

10 Aug

Summary of the Sermon by Pastor Irwan Fransiskus, at Bethany International Service, on Sunday, 6 Aug 2017.

Prayer of Jabez

The prayer of Jabez teaches us how to depend on God and to call upon Him.

1 Chronicles 4:9-10 – Jabez was more honourable than his brothers, and his mother named him Jabez saying, “Because I bore him with pain.” Now Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my border, and that Your hand might be with me, and that You would keep me from harm that it may not pain me!” And God granted him what he requested.

Jabez’s mother gave birth to him in pain. She named her son “Jabez”, which means “pain.” Perhaps she led a painful life, so she decided to name her son “pain” literally. Jabez’s prayer is made up of four parts. First, Jabez asks God to bless him. Second, he asks God to enlarge his territory or increase his responsibility. Third, he prays that God will be with him and stay close. Lastly, Jabez asks that God keep him from harm so that he will be free from pain.

The Bible mentions that he was an honourable man because of his prayer.

1. Jabez asked God to bless him.
Jabez understood that the blessings of Abraham in Genesis 12:2 – ask the Lord to bless us to glorify Him. Jabez understood the purpose of God’s blessings. Jacob wrestled with an angel at the Jabbok river until he was blessed (Genesis 32:26).

Power, fame, wealth, beauty and health cannot satisfy us. We can learn from the life of famous people like Marilyn Monroe, Michael Jackson, Thierry Costa and Getulio Vargas. They did not find the meaning of life in their status, and these successful people ended up committing suicide.

2. Jabez prayed for God to enlarge his border so that God’s hands may be with Him.
Jabez understood the prayer of Moses in Exodus 33:15 “If Your presence do not go with us, do not bring us from here”.

If the Lord is with us, His favour is also with us. It is very important to stay close to God and rely on His continued support and guidance throughout our life.

3. Jabez asked God to keep Him from harm.
Jabez clearly knew and prayed specifically to the One who could protect him from evil and pain, 1 Chronicles 4:10 – Keep me from harm so that it might not bring me pain. The Hebrew word for harm in this verse correlates with 1 Corinthians 10:1-11 – these are the examples of harm or “evil”.

How do we keep ourselves away from harm/evil? There are four examples of the word “harm/evil” in the Bible:

1. Idolatry – anything we love more than God is our idol.
It could be our hobby, our occupation or even the love of chasing money (Ecclesiastes 5:9-10, Ephesians 5:5).

2. Sexual immorality is a sin we must avoid.
We live in a world where society is experiencing moral degradation, where same sex marriage is legal in some countries. Genesis 49:2 records that Ruben slept with his stepmother (one of Jacob’s wives) and as a result Ruben was denied of his first-born birth right.

Lot and his daughters committed incest, and their two descendants from this relationship resulted in constant battles between the Israelites and the Moabites and Ammonites (Genesis 19:32).

3. Putting God to the test is to demand God to prove Himself to us in our own way.
Pastor Mark Wolford, from the US State of Virginia, was bitten by a rattle snake and was killed during a church service for putting God to test. He was well-known for handling dangerous snakes in a test of faith. We need to practise godly discernment by not doing dangerous acts to demonstrate God’s protection upon us. When we view God through our doubt and demand something of Him as a way of determining whether or not He can be trusted, we are in danger of testing God.

In the Bible, there are examples of both acceptable and unacceptable kinds of testing God. It is acceptable to “test” God concerning tithes and offerings (we give because we have faith in Him), for example, but unacceptable when the test is to demand something from God to prove Himself to us because we lack faith in Him.

4. Grumbling is a harmful attitude and it is evil in the sight of God. Proverbs 20:19 It is that faith-inspired action of obedience that God loves. As seen in the example of Israel’s journey out of Egypt, they developed a habit of grumbling.

How do we value the love of Christ in our life? God has given us everything, even His precious blood on the Cross (John 3:16). There is no greater love than the love of Christ. Jacqueline Kennedy’s love letter to the British Ambassador to the US, was sold in an auction for a price for USD$190,000. The Bible is God’s love letter to us, and is priceless. Our food is to do the will of God and to accomplish His work, John 4:34. Let us work out our salvation and work for food that endures to eternal life (John 6:27).

At the end of the prayer of Jabez, it is clear that God approved of this faithful prayer by granting it. It is also important to see that Jabez was passionate in his plea to God: "He cried out to the God of Israel." God wants to hear that we need Him through passionate prayer.

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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.

WHO DO YOU WORSHIP?

23 Nov

WHO DO YOU WORSHIP?

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

In the end, many people live only pursue worldly pleasure, pleasures of the flesh, and most people have become servants of mammon. Every day, from waking up late and what the human thinking is making money and building a business that wishing it will grow bigger, and the greater also the power and influence. As a result, people become greedy; there is no love of God let alone for others. But the Bible clearly says that man cannot worship two masters, because people will hate the one and love the other.

Because of the influence of mammon also the image of God in man is gone. Human beings forget their identity as worshipers of God that has been created by the hand of God Himself. Formed confirmed to the image of God means that man first and the sacred are creatures who always worship and fellowship with God.

Today God is a reminder for us to rebuild the house of God, do not forget the worship, fellowship with God and come back as holy creature worshipers. But know that the Lord’s command today is not meant literally for each of us to build a house of worship but more than that is to bring the presence of God in every aspect of our lives, the way we live is holy, fear and respect to God so in any of what we do and do God’s name be glorified.

TODAY’S WORD: 1 Timothy 6:6-10, NKJV

6 Now godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. 9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

“No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”  (Luke 16:13)

TODAY’S ACTION:

Entrust your whole life to God.

TODAY’S QUOTE:

We cannot worship two masters.

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

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: James 5

Night: Ezekiel 20-21

THE MEANING OF SUCCESS

22 Nov

THE MEANING OF SUCCESS

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

What is your view about the successful and unsuccessful? Maybe it should people who succeed are those who never have failed and never fall. Then there is another question: Are there people in this world never fails? So if you say no, then the people who succeed are those who have fallen / fail, do not give in to failure, get up and keep trying.

Today we will reflect on the measure of success. A success is not a situation that a lot of treasures, always appear in public, became a favourite for many people. It is all the result of a success and also point of test / processes from God for success. Success is the ability to remain strong in the problems, persevere in the issue, the issue fought and won on the issue. This process will be useful for shaping the humble with and in God’s guidance.

David was the king who was the figure and examples of successful people. In his life he often falls up in the problems, the ups and downs in sin, but he never gave up and always seek God and His guidance, so at the end of his life, David was described as successful.

Let today we have a new paradigm of the meaning of the word success. That success is a strength, perseverance, struggling over the issue. Therefore, if you are in a major or minor issue, smile because there is a success awaits you.

TODAY’S WORD: Psalm 37:23-25, NKJV

23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and He delights in his way. 24 Though he falls, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the Lord upholds him with His hand. 25 I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

“Though he falls, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the Lord upholds him with His hand.”  (Psalm 37:24)

TODAY’S ACTION:

When a problem is hitting you, never give up, be assured that you will see a rainbow of love from God.

TODAY’S QUOTE:

Problem may come up, but those who hope in the Lord will never fall lying, because God upholds them with His hands.

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

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: James 4

Night: Ezekiel 18-19

WHAT IS YOUR DREAM

20 Nov

WHAT IS YOUR DREAM

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

A dream is something that has not happened this time. Sometimes dreams can tell something so great that people say “Oh it’s just a dream.” Therefore, most of us fail to achieve a dream because we think the dream was too oversized and too far and have less faith or lack of trying to make it happen.

But did you know that in many ways God speaks through dreams. Bible records, Joseph had a dream that he would be the young king to whom all his brothers would bow down. The Bible also recorded well and knew that Joseph believe God-given dream even to achieve those dreams, Joseph had to pass through life’s journey full of misery that is very different from the dream. After 13 years later the new Joseph had his dream come true. Against the plan of God, Joseph took the attitude of believing without hesitation and look forward to God-given dream patiently and faithfully. Not all dreams come from God because there are a lot of dreams that came from the desire of the soul/mind which is not accomplished. But in many cases God uses dreams to speak and God gives the Holy Spirit to discern a dream that is not true or a dream from God. If the dream is the way God speaks, He will give a series of stories that regularly and repeatedly emphasized.

But know that God does not want us to stand idly by and so we have a dream to sleep and waited in silence. Fulfil God but God wants us to like Joseph who continue to work with God to live their lives even to be able to realize the dream/purpose in life they have to undergo suffering and misery to bring perseverance and fortitude.

TODAY’S WORD: Habakkuk 2:1-5, NKJV

I will stand my watch and set myself on the rampart, and watch to see what He will say to me, and what I will answer when I am corrected.

The Just Live by Faith

2 Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. 3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, It will not tarry. 4 “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; But the just shall live by his faith.

Woe to the Wicked

5 “Indeed, because he transgresses by wine, He is a proud man, and he does not stay at home. Because he enlarges his desire as hell, and he is like death, and cannot be satisfied,

He gathers to himself all nations and heaps up for himself all peoples.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

“For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, It will not tarry.”  (Habakkuk 2:3)

TODAY’S ACTION:

Dreams will come true as long as we believe in God who gives the dream will make it true.

TODAY’S QUOTE:

God has never changed from the past, now and forever, God can use dreams to speak to us. God will also give us the strength to wait and walk with Him until that dream becomes a reality.

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

 

TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: James 2

Night: Ezekiel 14-15

FAILURE = THE BEGINNING OF A SUCCESS

19 Nov

FAILURE = THE BEGINNING OF A SUCCESS

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

Thomas Edison, before he found light bulb he had suffered 9998 times a failure until he managed to find a lamp that can really light up. During school, Edison always got so bad that his mother let him go and tach Edison at home. But Edison never stops learning, and his spirit was never broken. Of a failing, but because the determination never to give up and get back up when they fail, that’s what makes Edison is considered as one of the most prolific creators of his time, holding a record 1,093 patents in his name. he also helped in the defence of the U.S government.

Do not judge a failure as the end of everything. Many people who have lost hope and even lose their lives because they judge failure as the end of everything. But let the time we already know Christ and trust Him to change the paradigm of failure is not the end of the world but the beginning of a success to another.

Therefore, have the Holy Spirit to enable us to enter in the thoughts of God that enables us to understand the plan of God so that when we encounter failures, we will remain optimistic through life. Not discouraged, the faithful and loyal to God because of our faith, he could open a new path of success.

It is true what the Lord Jesus, that with God nothing is too difficult case because in every failure, we always had faith and positive thinking to maximise the working of God’s miraculous.

TODAY’S WORD: Proverbs 24:16, NKJV

For a righteous man may fall seven times and rise again, but the wicked shall fall by calamity.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

“But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”  (Matthew 19:26)

TODAY’S ACTION:

Never give up on your failures, that today you have failed to make that as a lesson you to rise you to a higher level.

TODAY’S QUOTE:

A failure can be a jump toward the beginning of a success to another.

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

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: James 1

Night: Ezekiel 11-13

BELIEVE IN GOD

18 Nov

BELIEVE IN GOD

TODAY’S INSPIRATION

Anxiety arises when we are not sure about our future. Very often the anxiety caused by the failures of the past are constantly used by the devil to accuse and destroy us. If anxiety is not soon broken, our lives become fragile, wobbly, not live, or walk in place. God’s word tells us to cast all our worries to God. The meaning of the word surrender is not releasing fully half to God who truly is experts in wonder matters, He is capable and can be trusted to keep our lives.

However, very often we do not ever want to let go of that worry. We always carry it and think about it, if we are willing to let go and even then only to the extent when we would get into the church. We took off worries at the door of the church and by the time we returned home from church to bear. Also not uncommon, because of our own thought patterns that limit the power of the Lord, we give our concerned with the allocation system because there are parts that we are not sure if God can do it. When this happens to us then do hope we’ll get the providence of God because the word of God is very clear in James 1:6 against a fence-sister, especially those who falter because of the love of God who falter will never get anything from God.

Even confirmed in the book of 1 Peter 5:7, that we have to throw as far as possible all the worries, like throwing stones lest it concerns a burden that holds the grace of God. Have you read the word of God says if we pay attention to and obey His commands today to cast all our worry, God promises He will make us more than conquerors. But if we do not listen to God’s word, if not do it (give up all worry us) then we will never get the answers to our prayers, because our prayers are hindered by the attitude of our doubts dubious promises of God.

TODAY’S WORD: Proverbs 3:5-6, NKJV

5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding;

6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.

TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

“Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.”  (Psalm 55:22)

TODAY’S ACTION:

Have you given your worries to God?

TODAY’S QUOTE:

Give your worry to God, never to be taken back again!

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

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Morning: Hebrews 13

Night: Ezekiel 8-10