Simpang Borobudur no 27 Malang

Rev. Jusak Widjaja Hendra - WR Supratman 4 Sby

We will still be learning the epistle of Jude, which is in Tabernacle structure referred to the covering of badger skins and named the covering of judgment. The term “covering” shows the protection and attention of God towards the true church as well as the separation from the false one, as if the wheat were separated from the tares. The wheat was gathered into the barn but the tares into the fire.

There are four kinds of the false church as follows:

  1. unshepherded church (vs. 4)
  2. law-based church (vs. 5)
  3. satanic church in the appearance of Sodom and Gomorrah (vs. 6-7)
  4. fleshly church (starting vs. 8)

We have learned the signs of the fleshly church starting verse 8, now we are about to see the next sign.

Jude 1:13
13 raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.

The fleshly church is like the shining stars for which is reserved the black darkness. In other word, they are the falling stars, whose end is destruction forever.

People in the world badly want and win the predicate “star”, such as radio star, soccer star, and so on. And they do struggle to achieve it. To be a soccer star, for example, a man does not only come into the field and thus he be. He must go through a process, for sure; joining a football club, then practice and practice. So he will be the star someday. Nonetheless, stars of the world will fade away.

Now we talk about the heavenly ones, they are:

  • shepherd of the church
    A shepherd is the angel (Revelation “And unto the angel of the church …. write;”) as well as the star of the church.
  • ministers of God = priests and kings

To be a star never goes instantly. Here is the process to become a heavenly star:

  1. being called
    1 Peter 2:9

    9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;
    We are called out of darkness into His marvelous light, from being sinners into the justified and saved people because of these four matters:
    1. faith in Christ = the Gate of Tabernacle (
      We all were sinful men in the wilderness of the world but God calls to save us through our entering the Gate. God commanded Moses to build Tabernacle in which wandering people in the desert may enter the gate, referring to people in the world who believe Jesus through hearing Gospel.
    2. repentance = the Altar of Burnt Incense ( = to stop sinning and return to God. In ancient times, the people of Israel settled their sins by offering up animals on the altar of burnt offering. But now the offerings have been fulfilled in the Sacrifice of Christ on the cross, so that we do not need to offer up anymore sacrifice.
    3. water baptism = the Laver (
    4. baptism by the Spirit = the Door (
      Baptism by water and the Spirit results in the new life, a life of righteousness. This is called salvation. We should look into every life aspect and make sure that all things are right. Simple things like citizenship documents, finance, driving license must be according to the effective law. Driving motorcycle without driving license is wrong and none may guarantee the salvation.
    Therefore, we must be true to righteousness, which is as precious as the Blood of Christ. If we retain something unrighteous, we were to go out of the gate and wander again in the black world and wait for nothing other than everlasting destruction.
    After being saved, however, we should not be proud for many are called but few are chosen. Many proclaim themselves in the fullness of the Spirit and they feel greater than their pastor, and so they think that they do not need to go to church anymore. Don’t hurry, please! Please remember this second process:
  2. being chosen
    From among the many people called, only one is chosen to be sanctified because God has very strict election people. Thus, the elected are those who are sanctified and live in holiness. Holiness has higher value than righteousness.

Men of the flesh can only stand on ambitions, emotions, and lusts. Nothing in man is right; all are sin. How then shall we live in holiness?

  1. We must be sanctified by the word sharper than any two-edged sword / the word of sanctification / the teaching word.
    The word of gospel is important to call the new souls and these called people must be then brought to the election of God by the teaching word. Seeing that, the teaching word must in any case be preached in every church.
    Hebrews 4:12-13
    12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two–edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
    13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.

    What must be sanctified?
    • heart and mind
      Matthew 15:18-19
      18 "But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man.
      19 "For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies.

      There are seven sins and the number “seven” itself symbolizes perfection. If the seven sins are not sanctified, the sinner will be perfect in the uncleanness of the woman of Babylon. On the contrary, if he is sanctified, he will become as holy and perfect as Christ is.
    • joints = connection between two bones = relationship of men.
      A disturbed joint (a broken relationship) may cause pain and defect. They need sanctifying, therefore.
      2 Corinthians 12:20
      20 For I fear lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I wish, and that I shall be found by you such as you do not wish; lest there be contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, backbitings, whisperings, conceits, tumults;
      Apostle Paul feared not of the congregation’s physical conditions, but it was all about the spiritual matters; lest there be continuous broken relationships among them. Whisper not and speak frankly!
    • mouth
      Psalms 149:6
      6 Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, And a two–edged sword in their hand,
      Let “yes” be “yes” and “no” be “no”. We must be honest until we do not stumble anymore in word.
      James 3:2
      2 For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body.
      A man who does not stumble in word is able to bridle his whole body. He is a perfect man; he is part of the perfect Body of Christ.
  2. We, the priests, must dwell in the Holy Place.
    Although a priest has been sanctified, he might be defiled again. That’s why, he must dwell in the Holy Place.
    Leviticus 21:12
    12 ‘nor shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God; for the consecration of the anointing oil of his God is upon him: I am the LORD.
    In the days of Moses, the three objects - Golden Candlestick, Table of Showbread, and Golden Altar of Incense – whose measurements were ordered, had to be in the Sanctuary.
    The Golden Candlestick was made of a talent of pure gold, which is equal to thirty-four kilograms. It was not poured but molded.
    Many people claim that Tabernacle teaching is the law. If it were true, we had to make the three objects. In the spiritual meaning, Tabernacle teaching turns out to fulfill the law, so that the physical matters become the spiritual ones. For example, it is written in the law: You shall not commit adultery. This is a matter of the body and it has been fulfilled in the New Testament to become more defined like this: whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. This is the spiritual meaning with a higher value.
    Therefore, priests shall not go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of God. Going out of the sanctuary, one may not become holy. Even though the word of God has pierced our hearts and joints, we frequently sin again. That’s why, we do need to dwell in the holy place. We are priests and we may not go out of the sanctuary to keep the anointing of the Spirit upon our heads, for the holiness of life and being specialized. Joseph, for example, was the only one among his father’s children who was specialized, shepherded, and sanctified. He truly walked in holiness. Without regarding the hatred of his brothers, he rejected to compromise with their wickedness. What about us? In fact, we often sacrifice righteousness and holiness to seek praise for a position or something else. Don’t do that! Joseph did not care himself; he was beaten and thrown into a pit, but he stood on his calling and election (righteousness and holiness). This is what made Joseph so special and because of that, he was given the colorful tunic, which speaks of gift of the Spirit.
    Genesis 37:2-3
    2 This is the history of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers. And the lad was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives; and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father.
    3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. Also he made him a tunic of many colors.

    Feeding means patience. Parents must bring their young children to continue steadfastly in the shepherding as youths have the strong condition of flesh. They will find it is difficult to live holily if they are not in shepherding because the strong flesh is wild.

Here I am telling you a testimony. Someday a university student came to me and said that we need to learn much like Jesus did. Hearing his words, I then asked him to know which part of the Bible says it. But he answered, “Jesus learned from teachers.” So I told him to read the verses precisely because it is written “all who heard Him were astonished at His understanding and answers.”
This story is to open our eyes and we can see how people like to inverse the word. We must be extra careful. Jesus Himself had given us an example. When He was twelve, He had been taught in the teaching word. Another example, Joseph in his seventeen-year-old had been shepherded. Thus, the ages ranging from twelve to seventeen are an effective period to be shepherded in the teaching word as the flesh reaches the utmost strength at these ages. If youths are not shepherded, they will be unrestrained. If parents think that it is hard to bring their young children to the shepherding, they will see how it becomes harder when they grow up unrestrainedly anymore. I am not talking about physiology, but the Bible: Jesus in His twelve and Joseph in his seventeen.

Genesis 37:2b
2 … And the lad was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives; and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father.

This is called ‘mouth sanctification’. Joseph might have told his father that his brothers had been good – even though he witnessed their wickedness – in order that he was not hurt. But Joseph refused to hide their wickedness. His courage to bear a risk for righteousness and holiness portray the character of well-shepherded sheep. On the contrary, not being shepherded causes the wild flesh.

Genesis 37:3
3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. Also he made him a tunic of many colors.

Joseph was specialized from among his father’s children because Joseph was shepherded and walked in holiness. He thus was given a colorful tunic, signifying a gift of the Spirit and priest’s office. We must have the colorful tunic so we become priests and kings; otherwise, we will be naked, which means not beautiful but ashamed. No matter how great a man is in this world, his life is not beautiful before having the colorful tunic. Besides, he just lives for a shame. Therefore, we cannot put off the tunic after we get it.

Ephesians 4:7, 11-12
7 But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift.
11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,
12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,

grace = the gift of the Spirit = the marvelous gift given to do the work of ministry. The gift is precious much more than intelligence, seniority, experience, money, and any other thing. Not to the senior or the junior, the rich or the poor, but to the saints God gives the gifts and priest’s offices.

The holy ministry is obviously aimed at the forming of the Body of Christ. In fact, many servants do the work of ministry without holiness. Such ministry is directed to the forming of the body of Babylon. It is irony because they think that they minister God but they enter the forming of the body of Babylon.

I am personally pleased much with serving God only once a week. It is absolutely my pleasure, but I know it breaks the word of God. Will I then lead the congregation to Babylon? Certainly not! Therefore, we must be true to the calling and election of God, living in holiness by continuing steadfastly in the three main services, so that the gifts and the offices having granted to us become more obvious and steady. The more we are sanctified, the more we are used for the work of ministry. We are the stars in heaven, we are the priests and kings of God.

However, it is written in the epistle of Jude that the fleshly church was previously a star, but it was then cast into the black world. This is the falling star. Seeing that, we must keep our offices very well – no matter what we are: pastors, apostles, teachers, evangelists, church cleaner, music ministers, or others - lest we be the falling stars / the fleshly church.

Lucifer, for instance, was a music and song leader in heaven. He was the morning star but then cast into the bottomless pit because of his pride of saying “I will” five times.

Isaiah 14:12-14
12 "How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, You who weakened the nations!
13 For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation On the farthest sides of the north;
14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.

Song and choir leaders have to be careful because they have tends to become arrogant . The five times “I will” shows the top of pride, which brings to the lowest part of the earth (death). Why do I name it ‘the top of pride”? Since Jesus died with five wounds, which is the top of His humility. Jesus was obedient to death on the cross with five wounds, so that He was exalted to the highest place on the right hand of the Lord.

Judas was formerly a star, but he then became a falling star because of his love of money. He was a thief of God’s possessions called tithe and special offering. A Christian who does not return a tithe and special offering is a thief, but a pastor who teaches about a tithe but does not return it is an excellent thief.

It happened that Lucifer fell because of pride and Judas fell because of the love of money. There were two people: a Lucifer and a Judas, but later there will be a third of the stars of heaven falling down.

Revelation 12:3-4a
3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads.
4 His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth.

The tail points to heresies, they bring impacts worse than pride and money can do.
Falling to the earth = falling into the bottomless pit (perdition)

Isaiah 9:15
15 The elder and honorable, he is the head; The prophet who teaches lies, he is the tail.

The tail will draw a third of the stars of heaven, a third of the servants and ministers of God, including shepherds. The late Rev. Pong Dongalemba always said, “If a shepherd commits adultery, he will go to hell alone. But if a shepherd teaches a heresy, he will bring to the hell himself and as many as the number of the congregation. For example, he teaches a thousand people; these thousand people will go to the hell. This is how Satan works. We need to be extremely cautious. It is wonderful to become a star, but we must still be careful with Lucifer, Judas, and the tail of the dragon.
These steps will keep the stars above and not going down:

  1. Be the shining stars
    Philippians 2:12-15

    12 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling;
    13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.
    14 Do all things without complaining and disputing,
    15 that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,

    No gray star will stay above; it must fall down. That’s why, we must keep on shining, which means being a blessing to the others. There are some requirements to become a shining star as follows:
    • Work out the salvation with fear and trembling (vs.12) = do the service and ministry with faithfulness and responsibility to God.
      The presence and absence of a shepherd may be a good test of the congregation’s faithfulness. When the shepherd is absent, will the stars keep on shining? Remember David; while the others were going to war, he was relaxing himself. He fell, finally. The shining stars depend not on anyone, but God alone.
    • Do all things without complaining and disputing (vs. 14) = always give thanks and worship God.
      For instance, a husband and his wife both are stars but often fall into strife. The stars collide and they will fall. The same condition will happen to priests in strife. Do not murmur and dispute but give thanks and worship God more so that the stars shine more.
  2. Hold fast the word of life
    Philippians 2:16

    16 holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.
    Have you ever seen the stars above supported by a stick on the earth? They are unlike traffic lights with support sticks. The stars have no stick; they only hold the word of life. Our mistake is: we become stars but depend on the earth.

What does the word of life mean?

1 John 1:1
1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life––

The word of life is the word which can be heard, seen, and handled.

Luke 2:20
20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.

The word that can be heard and seen is called the shepherding word; and the term “handled” means “practiced”. Thus, to hold fast the word of life means to hold fast the shepherding word, which we have practiced and experienced. The practiced shepherding word will become our flesh and blood. Never we release it! Remember, each star only has one orbit. If we continuously move from one orbit to another, we will gradually fall down.

The word of life we hold fast will guarantee our present and future life in heaven. You may have high education, good business, and high salary, but you may not depend on them. If you do, you will probably worship antichrist when he reigns over the world. Although we have everything in the world, we as stars depend on the word of life (the shepherding word which we have practiced and experienced). Only the word of life can ensure our lives keep going to the eternal life. The more we hear and practice the shepherding word, the more we see the care of God apparently for this life on the earth and the future life in heaven.

The stars holding fast the word of life will reflect light and will not fall down for the Right Hand of the High Priest holds them.

Revelation 1:16a
16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two–edged sword,

What will the High Priest do with His Right Hand?

  • The Right Hand will deliver us from every bondage: sins, lusts, the world (pleasures, sorrows, bustles)
    Deuteronomy 7:7-8
    7 "The LORD did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any other people, for you were the least of all peoples;
    8 "but because the LORD loves you, and because He would keep the oath which He swore to your fathers, the LORD has brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of bondage, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.
  • The Right Hand will give help and victory over all problems.
    Isaiah 41:8-10
    8 "But you, Israel, are My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, The descendants of Abraham My friend.
    9 You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, And called from its farthest regions, And said to you, ‘You are My servant, I have chosen you and have not cast you away:
    10 Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

    When there seems to be no way out of a problem, we should not be despaired. Just let the Right Hand hold and help us!
  • The Right Hand will exalt us to heavens and to the throne of God.
    Psalms 118:15-16
    15 The voice of rejoicing and salvation Is in the tents of the righteous; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly.
    16 The right hand of the LORD is exalted; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly.

    People may close their eyes for us because we hang on to the colorful tunic as Joseph did; so that none wants to see, everything is limited (as in dungeon) , and people treat us with contempt. Nonetheless, it all will end sooner or later by our right position, in the Right Hand. God will exalt us in due time, in this world until in heavens to see Him, even unto the highest throne.
    To conclude, we must be stars that keep on shinning and not fall down. Hold fast the shepherding word we have practiced, experienced, and witnessed! The Right Hand of God will give deliverance and victory as well as exalt and glorify us on earth and in heaven.

God bless you!


Print Version

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Sermon Summary


Lfe experience with the Word of God

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

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