Simpang Borobudur no 27 Malang

Rev. Jusak Widjaja Hendra - WR Supratman 4 Sby

We still confer around unshepherded church.
Jude 1:4
4 For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Unshepherded church are those who creep in unnoticed, that is to say, those who are not serious about, even reject the shepherding service system. Judas, for instance, seemed to be shepherded as he always followed Jesus. In reality, he was not serious and forsook Jesus eventually (meaning he rejected the shepherding system).

Unshepherded church consists of the following groups:

  1. ungodly men (especially of Gentiles); they are like the waves of the sea on which Babylon sits.
  2. those who turn the grace of God
  3. those who deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ

Those who turn the grace of God
Gentiles are symbolized with donkey -- born to die. It might live only if a lamb was slain to redeem. We now live just because of the grace of God. Thus, it is the real amazing grace of God if we were born and saved, even now being perfected. Lest we turn the grace of God accordingly!

Here are the practices of turning the grace of God:

  1. Springing up the root of bitterness, such as envy and vengeance.
    Hebrews 12:15

    15 looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;
    Those who practice such things have forgot and departed from the grace of the Lord. This is to manifest that they are of the unshepherded.
    Isaiah 5:24
    24 Therefore, as the fire devours the stubble, And the flame consumes the chaff, So their root will be as rottenness, And their blossom will ascend like dust; Because they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts, And despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
    The root of bitterness will spread out and become as rottenness; meaning they reject the true teaching word so that their spiritual life wither as the stubble waiting for fire.
    1 Timothy 6:10
    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.
    From the heart empty of the teaching word will grow a root of evilness, that is, the love of money. The emptiness will be filled with money that he will hunt money like Esau, leaving the tent and wandering in the field. We do need money, education, destiny, and other things to live in the world, but do not hunt them. The term “hunt” implies lusts and they will swing our feet to wander up and down. It brings no joy but sorrows. Esau went hunting but then went home with hunger and weariness; he asked Jacob for the red stewed. It means that Esau got nothing in the field. Just think about what Esau could have; he outside got nothing from his hunting and inside lost his tunic of many colors (for Jacob had taken it). In short, the unshepherded will get nothing, either physically or spiritually, but tears.
    Let us now keep our heart in order not to become far from the grace of the Lord. Or else, there will be the root of bitterness, rottenness (rejecting the true teaching word), and the root of all kinds of evil (loving/hunting money – seeking worldly thing until leaving God). The grace of God is evident to Gentiles that we are donkeys – born to die – but there is a lamb – we are shepherded - that we may live.
  2. Being quick to stumble and cause the others to stumble in ministry as well as daily life (in such as office, school, etc).
    2 Corinthians 6:1-3
    1 We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain.
    2 For He says: "In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you." Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.
    3 We give no offense in anything, that our ministry may not be blamed.

    (to receive the grace of God in vain = to turn the grace of God).
    The positive thing is not to stumble, not at all.
    2 Peter 1:10
    10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble;
    It is indeed the grace and mercy of God if we, the Gentiles, may serve and minister Him. Therefore, we must take heed to ourselves not to stumble or cause the others to stumble; otherwise, we will fall in the sin of Babylon.
    Matthew 18:6
    6 "But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
    “to sin” = to stumble (in the source language)
    Stumbling in ministry until leaving it and causing the others to stumble is the sin of Babylon.

Revelation 18:21
21 Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, “Thus with violence the great city Babylon shall be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore.

Those who stumble in ministry are sinking both physically and spiritually (falling into the sin of Babylon), even into the lake of fire and brimstone, which is the hell.
Warning: many stumble and cause the others to stumble in godliness, and they all will sink into hell.
In short, unshepherded church turning the grace of God has the root of bitterness and rottenness (hunting in life) and leaving service and ministry until falling into the sin of Babylon.
We cannot live without the grace of God. This is to manifest that we are of the true church, that is, the shepherded.

Facing the unpredictable world, we should learn to live by the grace of God by this practice:
Willing to suffer without committing any sin, but because of the word / the will of God.

1 Peter 2:19
19 For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully.

It is not just a willingness, but our joy to suffer the cross.

Acts 5:41
41 So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.

We are not worthy to suffer for Jesus due to too much filthiness. So if we may suffer with Jesus, it is just because of the grace of God and we should rejoice for that.

Students of Lempin-el, look your lives before you joined Lempin-el. We all are unworthy to clean the house of the Lord. Flowing from that, do not grumble but rejoice because it is the will of God. Much money we have in bank may give us joy but what will happen if the bank collapse? The joy will become depression. We can find the real joy none may charge against in cross.
Many people, either small or great, reject the cross; they just want to receive blessings without bearing a suffering. Nonetheless, let it be manifested as written in the Bible, that many are called but few are chosen.

Luke 6:20-22
20 Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: "Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God.
21 Blessed are you who hunger now, For you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, For you shall laugh.
22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man’s sake.

None is worse than the poor. The world may shake but the poor is still blessed and it is the joy in cross.
The hunger will be filled; meaning if we fast/feel hunger, we shall be filled.
An ex-student of Lempin-El rang and told me that as he was fasting, a pastor’s wife mocked him. She said that we do not need to fast for we have had the Bride Tidings. I told him to fast and not mock her in return. Joy is only found in the cross. Everything without the cross is worldly joy that leads to destruction.

The four kinds of suffering – poor, hunger, weep, hated – are the joy of the cross. The figure “four” points to the cross.

Now the question is: why God allows us to suffer whereas we commit no sin.
Here are the answers:

  1. That we follow the steps of the Great Shepherd and not go astray.
    1 Peter 2:21-25

    21 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps:
    22 "Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth";
    23 who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously;
    24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness––by whose stripes you were healed.
    25 For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

    The steps of Jesus are “Blood” / sufferings. Thus, if we just want to enjoy pleasures, we will not follow His steps and go astray (verse 25). Jesus goes to heaven, while we go to hell. To follow His steps, there is only one way: we must endure innocent sufferings.
    How to follow the steps of Great Shepherd?
    • By following His steps in death, that is, being dead to sins.
    • By following His steps in resurrection, that is, walking in righteousness as follows:
      • committing no sin.
      • speaking no lie
      • taking no vengeance
      • not returning reviling for reviling
      • not repaying evil for evil, but on the contrary good for evil.
        The law of the world is to return evil for evil - so natural -, but the law of God is to return good for evil. Jesus said on the cross, “Father, forgive them.”
  2. That we are shepherded for the salvation of our spirit, body, and soul.
    If our soul and spirit is preserved, the body must be also preserved and will not go astray.
    The steps of Jesus are death, resurrection, and glory. Death means being dead to sin, resurrection means walking in the righteousness. We therefore should not complain about death experience – since the dead cannot complain – and not return evil for evil. A time to be raised up will come afterward that we may walk in righteousness and be glorified with Jesus Christ.
  3. That we may know Jesus and His four personae.
    Only Peter knew Jesus, while the other disciples did not know who Jesus is.
    “Who do the crowds say that I am?” Some mentioned Him Elijah, but Peter said that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. Yet, as soon as Jesus told them that He had to go to Jerusalem to be crucified, Peter took Him aside. This is to evidence that Peter knew Jesus but not His Cross. At last, Peter denied Him by saying he did not know Jesus.
    If Christians simply want blessings and know nothing about His Cross, in threat they will deny Jesus Christ. Seeing that, we have to know Jesus by the Cross (sufferings with Him) until His four personae are found in us.

Below are the four personae of Jesus:

  1. Jesus as the Flesh
    Luke 6:21b

    21 ... Blessed are you who weep now, For you shall laugh.
    There were times when Jesus wept: as He was born (although it is not written in the Bible, we can boldly say that Jesus did weep for He was born in the flesh), as Lazarus died, and as Jerusalem killed prophets.
    Blessed are you who weep for following Jesus, for you have found the way of truth.
    Jesus wept for Jerusalem killed prophets = Jesus wept for the sins of Jerusalem, and we for our sins – regretting/confessing and forsaking sins – so we will laugh. This is how we receive the persona of Jesus as the Flesh.
    King David in Psalms 32 said, ”Blessed is he whose sin is forgiven.”
    Psalms 32:1
    1 <<A Psalm of David. A Contemplation.>> Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered.
    Many do not go to church and they laugh, whereas it is a sin. In such a manner, they do not know Jesus in the flesh yet. Jesus wept first, then laughed “Blessed are you who weep now, For you shall laugh.” Lest these words be perverted! Everyone who laughs in sin will weep in hell.
  2. Jesus as the King
    Luke 6:20

    20 Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: "Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God.
    Many claim: Jesus is the King, He is rich and so should we be and the poor becomes depressed. Servant of God like that will not be fervent in spirit in committing his ministry to the Lord. Jesus is rich in heaven but in fact, he was poor in the earth until he had no tomb.
    Jesus was rich in heaven but willing to become poor that we may become rich.
    2 Corinthians 8:9
    9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.
    We should not define “rich” with large amounts of money and “poor” with not even a cent. Rich here rather means the richness of liberality – although we have no money, we can still share with the others.
    2 Corinthians 8:1-2
    1 Moreover, brethren, we make known to you the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia:
    2 that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality.

    Riches mean an ability to share although not having any money. The wrong attitudes are as follows: (1) insisting wealth/much money because considering Jesus is wealthy, (2) not giving to others because of waiting to have much money but being stingy after having much money. It is better now that we have nothing but we can give what we have like the churches of Macedonia. The beginning is giving tithe and special offering for God’s works and others in need. Such is he riches of liberality (the persona of Jesus as the King).
    The rich man (in Bible) said that he would pull down his barns and build greater, and he never shared with the others. God therefore said he was not rich before the Lord.
    Good works will not pass away but become a clean and white garment, which is the garment of the Bride of God.
    2 Corinthians 9:8
    8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.
    (good work = sharing)
    Jesus Christ is the King / Heavenly Groom and we are kings / the Bride of God, wearing the same garment as Jesus’.
    Revelation 19:8
    8 And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
    Fine linen is the good works which will turn into the garment of the Bride, clean and bright.
  3. Jesus as the Servant
    Luke 6:21a

    21 Blessed are you who hunger now, For you shall be filled. …
    When Jesus had been baptized (Matthew 4), the Holy Spirit descended like a dove and alighted upon Him. Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to fast or feel hunger to do and satisfy the will of the Father. As Satan came and got Jesus to change stones into bread, Jesus ignored and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” If Jesus had concerned with His own interest, it would have been a benefit to demonstrate His power. In fact, He did not do it. Jesus fasted to do the will of the Father / to serve and satisfy the Father. This is the nature of a servant. Lest we serve the Father to satisfy our own flesh; instead, we must have willingness to be hungry/suffer that the others may be satisfied.
    In this act the nature of a servant is manifested in us: serving the Lord with hunger, meaning: “I need the ministry”, not “The ministry needs me”.
    The hungry need no command to eat; they will surely eat by their initiative and will not feel bored to take a meal. Why do we never feel bored of consuming food? Because we feel hungry and want to satisfy the hunger.
    Here are the understandings of serving Jesus with hunger:
    We serve the Lord with hunger because we need it and none needs to command us because we are already faithful and responsible and not boring. Such service will satisfy the Lord. Do not minister to satisfy man but the Lord and He will satisfy us.
    Luke 17:8
    8 "But will he not rather say to him, ‘Prepare something for my supper, and gird yourself and serve me till I have eaten and drunk, and afterward you will eat and drink’?
    The belt is to serve the Lord in righteousness and faithfulness.
    Isaiah 11:5
    5 Righteousness shall be the belt of His loins, And faithfulness the belt of His waist.
    Food and drink are our needs but God gives us them for sure.
    We do not need to worry about this life and future, since they belong to God’s concern. Our concern is to serve and satisfy God for it is the character of a servant.
  4. Jesus as the Son of God
    Luke 6:22

    22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man’s sake.
    The persona of Jesus as the Son of God is in holiness and glory, that is, as He was hated and persecuted. Thus, if we are hated and persecuted for the ministry, we get a chance to receive the persona of the Son of God in holiness and glory.
    Revelation 7:13-14
    13 Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, “Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?”
    14 And I said to him, “Sir, you know.” So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

    great tribulation = persecution.
    Holiness and glory are symbolized with white color.
    When we are hated and persecuted for God’s sake (ministry and teaching word), we can wash our robes and made them white in the Blood of the Lamb, meaning living in holiness and glory, even to be clean and bright sometime. Such a robe belongs to the Bride of God.
    God lets us know Jesus until w undergo the sprinkling of blood for these purposes:
    1. we can follow His steps. Or else, we will not reach the heavenly glory through being dead to sin, living in righteousness and shepherding.
    2. we receive Jesus personae in suffering, i.e. Jesus as the flesh suffering/weeping – we weep for our sins/confessing them; Jesus as the King who is poor to make us rich – we have riches of liberality that we may give although we are poor; Jesus as the Son of God in holiness and glory – we are quiet in suffering, not resisting or quarrelling; Jesus as the Servant – we serve the Lord because we are hungry, we need it and it satisfies others and the Lord and He will satisfy us.
      Now we know the steps and personae of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is good but not enough; we need to know His power as well, but lest we know His power first!

Matthew 11:2-6
2 And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples
3 and said to Him, "Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?"
4 Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and tell John the things which you hear and see:
5 "The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them.
6 "And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me."

John the Baptist knew Jesus “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”
Nevertheless, he doubted Him as he was in prison.

John 1:29
29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, " Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!

We will always praise and exalt Jesus Christ as we abound with blessings, but we may doubt Him in sufferings. That’s why, we need to know His power to help us all.

John the Baptist was actually a bold man.

Matthew 11:7-9
7 As they departed, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John: "What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind?
8 "But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses.
9 "But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet.

Verse 9 refers to John the Baptist, a bold man who knew Jesus as the Son of God. But as he was in prison, he doubted just as a bruised reed and as smoking flax.

Matthew 12:20
20 A bruised reed He will not break, And smoking flax He will not quench, Till He sends forth justice to victory;

At the beginning he was a bright flax to preach about repentance and baptism of water even he said bravely "Brood of vipers!” to the Pharisees. Nevertheless, he became week as a bruised reed and smoking flax, facing the prison.
Perhaps you were strong and burnt for your well being, but now frown as God let you be in troubles. Jesus will not quench the smoking flax, even He comes to show His activities in the power of resurrection.

Matthew 11:4-5
4 Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and tell John the things which you hear and see:
5 "The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

The answer shows Jesus’ activity with the power of resurrection He showed to John the Baptist and now we can see it too.
In short, we are in suffering in order to follow Jesus’ steps through living in shepherding and righteousness and to receive Jesus’ personae. If our lives now face no way out because of problems in economy, marriage, or household as a bruised reed and smoking flax, god will neither break nor quench. He comes in the midst of us to show His activity in the power of resurrection.
What is the power of resurrection for? To solve hard cases, to create things which do not exist, and to enable all the impossible. For example, the blind see (perfectly), the lame walk (perfectly), and the lepers are cleansed (perfectly). It is hard for us, but not for God by the power of resurrection. Moreover, the power of resurrection is to perfect and beautify the blemish (for all the blemish are not beautiful). By the power of resurrection, a bruised reed will stand upright and smoking flax shine again. Do not doubt, whatever conditions in us, there is God with the power of resurrection.
God bless you all!


Print Version

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Sermon transcript from church service in Malang and Surabaya, preached by Pastor Widjaja Hendra.

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