Prayer Service in Surabaya, September 10, 2014 (Wednesday Evening)
Preacher: Deacon Gideon Pakpahan
Peace and grace in the love of Jesus Christ. Good evening, let us listen to the Word of God. May the peace and grace from God be within us.
We still read from Revelation 2:1-7
Revelation 2 refers to the 7 letters to the 7 churches, or the 7 blood sprinkles, the last sanctification to the 7 churches to make them perfect and as glorious as God.
Verse 1 describes that the last sanctification to the church of Ephesus is to make them return to the Paradise and eat from the tree of life in the Paradise.
If it is seen from verse 2, the church of Ephesus had a good work and they were praised by God, but they still had an infirmity that they lost the initial love. Therefore, a blood sprinkle is needed to bring them back to the Paradise.
2:6 But this you have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.
2:7 "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God."'
God has promised to the church of Ephesus or to us, that if we win, He will give us to eat from the tree of life and we will return to the Paradise.
If we read from verse 1 to 5, the Ephesians have lost the initial love, which means they didn't have love until the perfect love, so that they can't enter the Paradise or they are beaten by sins.
There are 3 enemies of the Gentiles which make God's servants lose and can't enter the Paradise, even are left on the earth and undergo God's punishments, as follows.
2:16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;
2:17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."
3:2 And the woman said to the serpent, "We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden;
In Genesis 2:16-17, God commanded humans that 'Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat', while in Genesis 3:2, Eve deleted the word 'freely'. This makes God's servants be thrown away from the Paradise, that is the sins of disobedience to God's voice.
Eve added and reduced the true Word.
Being not obedient to the Word is a spiritual deafness.
The marks are as follows.
God will help us as follows.
- Not being willing to listen to God's word earnestly.
Pay attention when listening to the Word!This will determine whether we have deaf ears or the obedient ones.
8:18 Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever has, to him more will be given; and whoever does not have, even what he seems to have will be taken from him."
Don't listen to the Word while joking around, chatting, being sleepy, bored, or without any concentration.
The consequence is there is no hope to return to the Paradise.
- Mark 9:18-21
9:18 And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not."
9:19 He answered him and said, "O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him to Me."
9:20 Then they brought him to Him. And when he saw Him, immediately the spirit convulsed him, and he fell on the ground and wallowed, foaming at the mouth.
9:21 So He asked his father, "How long has this been happening to him?" And he said, "From childhood.
The second mark is being possessed by Satan (the evil and unclean spirit).
The sin of disobedience to the Word or deafness can attack us from our childhood.
Sunday school teachers should pay more attention! Bring the children to listen to the Word to avoid them from being deaf and possessed by the evil and unclean spirits.
If we are possessed by the evil and unclean spirits, the consequence is being thrown down (verse 18), which means living in miseries.
- Mark 9:25
9:25 When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: "Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!"
The first way is God will preach the Word, which is truthful and strong.
An example is we are rebuked by the Word about being sleepy while listening to the Word.
Being sleepy because of tiredness is different from the one that comes from being possessed by the evil spirit.
If we are sleepy because we are tired, we will be sleepy right from the beginning until the very end.
On the other hand, if we are sleepy because we are possessed by an evil spirit, we will be sleepy when the Word is preached, but not anymore at the end of the Word.
- Mark 7:33
7:33 And He took him aside from the multitude, and put His fingers in his ears, and He spat and touched his tongue.
'put His fingers in his ears' means we feel hurt while God shows our sins through the strong Word.
The Word may show our sins strongly, but don't reject it. Keep the Word.
7:37 And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, "He has done all things well. He makes both the deaf to hear and the mute to speak."
The result is God has done everything well. Tonight, God is able to help us whatever our conditions are.
- James 4:4
4:4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
The second enemy is the friendship with the world.
The friendship with the world is an enmity with God.
Where is God?
3:10 So he said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself."
God is in the garden of Eden. The other proof that God is in the Eden: Luke 23:43
"23:43 And Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise."
There are 2 proofs that show that God is in the Paradise.
If we are in friendship with the world, we will not be in the Paradise.
The practices are as follows.
- Being not faithful in the services and ministries.
- Leaving the services and ministries to look for worldly things.
It is not that we are not allowed to work. On the contrary, we have to work or study hard and not be lazy. However, if we work or study and we abandon our services and ministries, that is bad.
- Philippians 3:18-19
3:18 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
3:19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame--who set their mind on earthly things.
The third practice is only thinking of the earthly things and not thinking of spiritual ones, even looking for them by doing wrong or illegal things.
3:1 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.
3:2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.
3:3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
3:4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.
If we only think of worldly things, we will lead to death.
On the other hand, if we think of spiritual things, there is a hope that we will welcome God's second coming and come back to the Paradise and eat from the tree of life.
ONLY the mind that is controlled and anointed by the Holy Spirit can think of spiritual things.
- Galatians 5:16-21
5:16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
5:17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
5:18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
5:19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness,
5:20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies,
5:21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
The third enemy is the flesh with all of its wants and lusts.
The flesh is the wildest enemy.
If we obey the flesh, we will always be against God's will.
From the youth, pay attention, especially regarding the partner.
Eden was inhabited by Adam and Eve, but the marriage was destroyed because of sins and disobedience so that they were thrown away to the earth. Therefore, to return to the Paradise, first we have to pay attention to the physical marriage.
Pay attention to the marriage starting from the moment when we are in the relationship.
Following the lust of the flesh is through the eyes that we only see the wealth or fair face and we don't consider the spirituality.
This kind of marriage will surely not return to the Paradise.
"Last night when I preached the Word in Malang, I was very grateful. Honestly, I preached the Word without specifically preparing it to point to someone, and the Word reached into me. I testified that the pastor had said it many times, 'if you are married, I will send you.' However, I was only having physical mind, and I had to confess to the congregation, and up to this day I have not been sent. I believe that God has a beautiful plan, though."
6:1 Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them,
6:2 that the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose.
If our physical marriage only bases on flesh things, we will not reach the spiritual one, but the marriage will be stripped by Satan and lead to the marriage of blasphemy or the marriage of Babylon that will only wait for the death.
Don't play with the marriage!
To enter the marriage, we need to pay attention to the spiritual things, like unity in teaching, baptism, until we are united in 7 unities (Ephesians 4:3-6).
Herod was a life with a strong lust and in consequence his life and his marriage were destroyed.
The same thing applies on our services and ministries to God, if we only follow our lust, we serve God but denying the cross or the flesh suffering.
3:18 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
Let us marry, serve God, and do everything according to God's will, according to the Word and the will of the Holy Spirit (in truth).
"I came here by motorcycle from Malang. Everything was fine, but on the way, suddenly I had a headache and I couldn't stand it. I thought, 'God, what am I supposed to do? Will I faint?' According to my will, I am not willing to come here. It's better for me to stay in Malang and take a rest.
Once, I said to the pastor, 'Pastor, you may ask me to clean the whole church from the first floor to the third floor as long as you don't command me to preach'. If it is according to my will, I don't want to preach, because the burden is very heavy, I need hours of preparation even sometimes I can't sleep. I am telling the truth. If I mop the floor, even for three storeys, I still can sleep after that. However I pray to God, don't let me serve according to my will, but His."
We can win in a fight against these 3 enemies as follows.
20:6 Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed; He will answer him from His holy heaven With the saving strength of His right hand.
However wealthy or powerful we are in this world, we can't beat the flesh, the world, and the sins! David was strong and was used by God, but he fell on adultery.
To win, we have to live in the anointment of the Holy Spirit.
If we live in the anointment of the Holy Spirit, that is we are anointed, filled, and overflowed with the Holy Spirit.
This is what we ask for to God, because our flesh is weak, however strong we are, we will lose.
The usages of the Holy Spirit are as follows.
- The Holy Spirit is able to create miracles. The Holy Spirit is able to kill our sinful deeds within our lives.
8:6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
- Romans 8:11
8:11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
The second usage is the Holy Spirit is able to give us life, both physically and spiritually.
The Holy Spirit is able to revive us from death.
- Titus 3:5
3:5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,
The third usage is the Holy Spirit is able to change our lives to the spiritual human, as glorious as Jesus. We deserve to go back to the Paradise, we return to Eden.
This evening, we beg for God to come back to the Paradise. We have to be anointed, filled, and overflowed in the Holy Spirit. No matter how strong we are, our flesh can't return to the Paradise and even more the New Jerusalem.
We beg to God that our lives are controlled by the Holy Spirit, and not be controlled by the sins, the world, and the flesh.
Not being controlled by the sinsmakes us able to be obedient and not reject the Word.
Not being controlled by the world makes us faithful.
Not being controlled by the flesh makes us obedient to God's will, which is the Word. Everything in our lives have to be in accordance with the Word and we live in the Holy Spirit.
God blesses us.