Posted in myJournal

To do good or to do evil?

Mark 3:1-7

A Man with a Withered Hand Healed
3 And he entered into the synagogue again, and a man who had a withered hand was there. 2 And they were watching him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath, in order that they could accuse him. 3 And he said to the man who had the withered hand, “Come into the middle.” 4 And he said to them, “Is it permitted on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent. 5 And looking around at them with anger, grieved at the hardness of their hearts, he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And he stretched it* out, and his hand was restored. 6 And the Pharisees went out immediately with the Herodians ⌊and began to conspire⌋ against him with regard to how they could destroy him. 

SINS TO AVOID:

  1. Trapping someone to commit mistake or conspiring to kill an innocent person. There is no love here. 
  2. Having a hardened heart that’s not responsive to God’s love or rebuke. 

PROMISE TO CLAIM:

  1. Receive physical and spiritual healing from God who has big compassion.

EXAMPLES TO FOLLOW:

  1. Always seek the presence of God in the church despite the hardship we are facing. Problems or physical illness should not be a barrier for us to go to church. 
  2. Any tradition or belief should never contradict doing good to others. Loving our neighbors should always be above any other law (except for loving God).

COMMAND TO OBEY:

  1. Always be ready to obey God. Be sensitive to His voice – like the man with the withered hand he obeyed Jesus when he was asked to stand in the middle of the syngogue. Maybe God will perform a miracle in your life now but you must be willing to obey first. 

SOME OTHER TEACHINGS:

  1. The Lord Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath. He can do miracles and work to help others even on a Sabbath day.
Posted in myJournal

Fasting – at the right time

Mark 2:18-22

On Fasting
18 And John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting, and they came and said to him, “⌊Why⌋ do the disciples of John and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” 19 And Jesus said to them, “The ⌊bridegroom’s attendants⌋ are not able to fast while the bridegroom is with them, are they? As long a time as they have the bridegroom with them, they are not able to fast. 20 But days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast in that day. 21 No one sews a patch of unshrunken cloth on an old garment. ⌊Otherwise⌋ the patch pulls away from it—the new from the old—and the tear becomes worse. 22 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. ⌊Otherwise⌋ the wine will burst the wineskins and the wine is destroyed and the wineskins too. But new wine is put into new wineskins.” 


SIN TO AVOID:

  1. Judging others because they don’t cope up with our standard.  Extend mercy as God extended mercy to our own shortcomings. 

PROMISE TO CLAIM:

  1. Fasting is not needed when the Lord Jesus was with His disciples – physically.  Listen to God’s direction and guidance in your life. 

EXAMPLE TO FOLLOW:

  1. Fasting has a role in the maturity of our faith. John’s disciples did and Pharisees’ disciples did. The Lord Jesus said that when He’s gone, then His disciples would fast (v20). 

COMMANDMENTS TO OBEY:

  1. Do a fast – ask God for direction when and how long. We can also fast on things that takes higher priority in our life instead of spending time with God such as games, movies, TV, FB, Youtube, etc.  
  2. New teachings from the Holy Spirit needs a renewed heart that can only be obtained by having a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.  Without this relationship and trust in God, change for the better is difficult to attain. 

SOME OTHER TEACHING:

  1. The teacher/pastor/leader is responsible for the behavior of his students.  As a leader, take responsibility for the growth of your members and start caring for them. 
Posted in myJournal

Dining with Jesus

Mark 2:13-17

Levi Called to Follow Jesus
13 And he went out again beside the sea, and all the crowd was coming to him, and he began to teach them. 14 And as he* was passing by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me!” And he stood up and* followed him.
15 And it happened that he ⌊was dining⌋ in his house, and many tax collectors and sinners ⌊were dining with⌋ Jesus and his disciples, for there were many and they were following him. 16 And the scribes of the Pharisees, when they* saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors, began to say to his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?” 17 And when* Jesus heard it*, he said to them, “Those who are healthy do not have need of a physician, but those ⌊who are sick⌋. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” 

SINS TO AVOID:

  1. Don’t be judgmental like the Scribes of the Pharisees who questioned the Lord when He ate with the tax collectors. Don’t judge other people because of what they do as we don’t know their stories and their struggles. For instance, how would you treat a prostitute? How would you treat a pastor ministering to workers of a beerhouse? God works in a mysterious way and if you were put on the spot, ask God for wisdom how you can show love and still tell the truth.  How we say the truth has a big impact to our listeners whether they will listen or become defensive. Key here is loving the person but hating sin.
  2. Pride – the scribes of the Pharisees failed to enjoy fellowship with Jesus because they don’t think they need Jesus. They can’t enjoy forgiveness as they think they don’t have something to confess. We must be humble enough to receive something from God. 

PROMISES TO CLAIM:

  1. Jesus came to call sinners like me. 
  2. Jesus is like a physician, he came to heal me especially my heart. 
  3. Jesus will dine with me and have a deeper fellowship if I follow Him.

EXAMPLES TO FOLLOW:

  1. Jesus ministry focused to the lost and those who have life issues. Any ministry should have goals of helping the needy, lifting the oppressed, & empowering the weak to the point that these people would do the same to others. 
  2. Like Jesus be always ready to teach if opportunity provided. Key is be always ready in your heart, in your mind, and prepare well. As a preacher, my goal is to always have 1 sermon outline and prezi presentation ready for any impromptu preaching. Also be ready to preach even if there is no projector.
  3. Be hungry for wisdom like the crowd who kept following Jesus but be careful to apply what you learned in your life and not just a passive listener. 

COMMAND TO OBEY:

  1. Follow Jesus like Levi to the point of having a relationship with Jesus and spending time to have dinner together (deeper fellowship requires time investment). Have a regular and consistent Quite Time with God. 

SOME OTHER TEACHING:

  1. Food is vital in the ministry. I heard several testimonies of believers who started with just interest in the free dinner provided but as they heard the Word of God preached, God started to change their hearts until they believed.  Ministry is expensive but as the saying goes “A million dollar spent to save one soul from going to hell is money worth spending.”
Posted in DUA

The Inner Voice

The Four Voices by Bro Joseph
SERMON NOTES:

1st voice – the voice from heaven
from Jesus — go and make disciples
voice – teaching them to obey

Matthew 3:1. And a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased

“Jesus must increase , I my decrease.”
Where are the lost in Guangzhou?

2nd Voice within you. Luke 15:17-20 – “… and he arose, and came to his father.”

3rd  Voice – voice from out there

Acts 16:9
And a vision appeared to Paul in the night. There stood a man of Macedonia, and begged him, saying, come over into Macedonia, and help us.

4th Voice – The voice from below

Luke 14:24-28 – the rich man begged Abraham for Lazarus to dip his finger on water and let it drop to cool his tongue.

Psalms 126:5-6
5 Those who sow with tears
shall reap with rejoicing.
6 He who diligently goes out with weeping,
carrying the seed bag,
shall certainly come in with rejoicing,
carrying his sheaves.

 

This DUA bible study guide focused on the inner voice (the 2nd voice).

 

Passage: Luke 15:17-20

Luke 15:17-20English Standard Version (ESV)
17 “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! 18 I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ 20 And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.

 

DISCOVERY:

  1. What is the man’s situation in verse 17? Why did he thought about his father’s hired servants?
  2. How did the man showed his humility in verse 18 & 19?
  3. How did the father treated his son in verse 20?

 

UNDERSTANDING:

  1. How did the man realize to go back to his home in the midst of poverty? Did anyone tell him?
  2. How does the man’s humility helped him? The father ran to his son even before the son can speak (verse 20) – so do you think the father’s reaction would change if the man is not humble? Why or why not?
  3. Who do you think owns this inner voice that the man heard?

 

APPLICATION:

  1. If we are confused or hopeless, how can we listen to the inner voice? How can we hear it?
  2. What hinders you from doing what the inner voice tells you? How can you overcome this?
  3. How can we stay humble if we are really good about one thing or how can we show our humility if we won in a contest?

 

Posted in DUA

The Power of Kindness

Sermon Notes:

David said “Mephibosheth”
You will always eat at my table. For your father’s sake.

Imitate Mephiboseth’s humbleness. Imitate David’s kindness.

Matthew 10:8 – Freely you have received, freely give.

 

Passage: 2 Samuel 9:1-11

David said, “Is there still anyone who is left for the house of Saul that I may show loyal love to him for the sake of Jonathan?” 2 Now Saul’s household had a servant whose name was Ziba, so they summoned him to David, and the king asked him, “Are you Ziba?” He said, “⌊At your service⌋!” 3 Then the king said, “But is there still anyone of Saul’s household that I may show the loyal love of God with him?” And Ziba said to the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan who is lame in the feet.” 4 The king said to him, “Where is he?” And Ziba said to the king, “⌊He is here⌋ in the house of Makir the son of Ammiel in Lo Debar.” 5 So King David sent and brought him from the house of Makir the son of Ammiel from Lo Debar. 6 So Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David. And he fell on his face and did obeisance. David said, “Mephibosheth,” and he said, “⌊I am ready to serve you⌋.” 7 Then David said to him, “Don’t be afraid, for ⌊I will certainly show⌋ loyal love to you for the sake of Jonathan your father, and I will restore to you all the lands of Saul your father. And you shall always eat food at my table.” 8 Then he did obeisance and said, “What is your servant that you have paid attention to the dead dog like me?”

David summoned Ziba the servant of Saul and said to him, “All that was Saul’s and all his household I have given to the son of your master. 10 You shall till the land for him, you and your sons and your servants; you shall bring in the produce and it shall be food for the son of your master that he may eat. But Mephibosheth the son of your master may always eat food at my table.”

 

DISCOVERY:

  1. Why was David looking for anyone that belongs to the house of Saul (v1,3,7)?
  2. How did David showed his love to Mephibosheth in verse 7?
  3. How did Mephibosheth responded to David’s action in verse 8?

 

UNDERSTANDING:

  1. Why David was so kind to Mephibosheth?
  2. Does Mephibosheth deserved David’s kindness?
  3. Do we deserve God’s mercy? Why or why not?

 

APPLICATION:

  1. Who is your bestfriend? What can you do to him/her that you haven’t done before?
  2. Do an act of kindness to someone this week. Share how will you do this?