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Behold, What Love!

Behold, What Love!

Sermons, Sermons by Pastor Jason Lim, The Real Life Series, Transcriptions0 comments

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.” 1 John Chapter 3 verse 1

Download the sermon slides: SERMON-2014-10-26

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Sermon :

As a church, as we go through the Bible and we are in the book of 1st John. That’s one of the last few books in the Bible in the New Testament. So if you can turn with me to 1John and chapter 3, we continue this wonderful book about real life, about the life, God desires for His people. Let me start with a simple illustration.

There is this company set up during Christmas to answer questions about turkeys, alright. So, during Christmas if you bought a turkey or you want to buy a turkey, or you want to cook a turkey, anything you want to ask about a turkey, you can call this hotline. And so one day, a lady called up and she said well, I, I am not sure whether you can help me, but this is my question, I just discovered that at the bottom of my freezer is a turkey I’ve kept for the past 23 years, do you think, I ca eat it ? The operator on the other end says, Well, ma’am, if your freezer have always been below 0, all these 23 years, it’s probably safe to eat. But I would also like to caution you because it’s been there for 23 years, it probably would have deteriorated and it wouldn’t be worth eating anyway.” The lady then says, “Ah that’s what I thought too, well, it’s okay, I can always give it to my church.” (Laughter in the congregation)

Time stamp in audio 0:01:28.7.

Well, it is both funny and sad at the same time, because that’s how we look at God. That’s how we look at our relationship with God, we give Him our spares and our leftovers but this is in such a sharp contrast with the disciples of Jesus Christ, John the apostle is one of the disciples who left all, family and possessions to follow Jesus, and according to tradition, John followed Jesus and stood for Jesus, that he was even thrown into a cauldron of boiling oil. But then he never stopped living for his master, Jesus Christ.

Time stamp in audio 0:02:10.2.

What is the difference between a lady who wants to give the frozen turkey of 23 years and John the apostle, who gave his life for the cause of Christ. What makes the difference, what’s the difference, for you, what would make a difference in your life? I struggle sometimes in that question and I thank God for His Word in 1John chapter 3 and verse one. We catch a glimpse of the heart of apostle John, he says, “See what kind of love the Father has given to us that we should be called children of God, and so we are.”

John is now giving an exclamation, “Behold, see, what kind of love the Father has given to us, he is shocked, he’s astonished, he is amazed in the depth of his being of God’s love for us. He says , “See what kind of love.” You say, what’s so special about what kind? Well it’s interesting because the original Greek, is one word, which is potapos, it’s not platypus, but potapos and what is a potapos, well, literally in the Greek, it means what country. So, if you read it, it goes like this, see what country of love the Father has given to us. It’s is a idiom, it’s an idiom, idiomatic expression and it says, wow, this is so out of the world, this is so unearthly, this is something that is never seen, never heard, never known before. This is off the charts kind of love, see what indescribable, outrageous, amazing love, the Father has given to us.

Time stamp in audio 0:04:03.3.

I suggest to you, that the difference between a lady who will give a frozen turkey of 23 years and an apostle John will give his life is that he has beheld that out of the country, potapos, indescribable amazing love of God.

Behold, What Love !

This morning, I have a very simple message, it is just these 3 words, in particular, Behold, what love! That’s it, and that is all we are going to look at this morning, but I believe that if we really get this in the depth of ourl beings, it will change our lives. You see all of us, must have tokens of God’s love in our lives. If you have known Jesus, if you have been seeking God, you might be able to say well, I experienced God’s love in my life because he answered my prayers, because he healed me, because he helped me out of a very difficult situation, because he gave these breakthroughs in life. Well, I for one have experienced God’s tokens of love in many ways.

Time stamp in audio 0:05:14.7.

One of the most significant ways in my life is in my son’s life, Shawn, he tells you his name is written, like this. There are four ways to spell Shwan, Shawn, Shaun, Sean, and Shone. Huh, huh, all right, but the right one is Shawn, all right, this is my son Shawn. Most of you know that when he was younger, he was diagnosed with autism and I regularly share that both my wife and I, we went through the, probably the most difficult points of our life, then. We felt that we were devastated, life is never to be the same because we were told that Shawn, would probably not be able to say anything. He would not be able to hug us, he might never be able to say, I love you and he might be dependent on us for the rest of his life. For me, I felt that the son, I knew died and in his place, is another one, which I best never expected.

Time stamp in audio 0:06:17.4.

But God is so good to us, by the way, if there are people in your life, that are going through struggles and not healed, it doesn’t mean God doesn’t love you. It’s just that, His ways are above our ways. But in our case, we are grateful to the Lord, how He has allowed Shawn, to move, and progress and grow in a way we never expected. For the past, for the past four and a half years, he is now 6, he has shown tremendous improvement and growth and and you know when he was growing up, we were told he could maximally handle one language, so we only spoke to him in English. But when he was able to pick up English, we, we thought let’s try Chinese and that’s quite late. So we decided to send in for tuition, I I know your few this, tiger dad or tiger mum, very kiasu, send, send and send, a lot of things, okay, we sent him for Chinese, enrichment not tuition, all right, I sent him for Chinese, enrichment classes, and I think he went through it, for the past one or two years. Three weeks ago, we got a report from the school and this is what the report says. Hao’en which is my son’s Chinese name, in English, it says, it says Shawn is a bright, cute or adorable and sensible boy. The words that struck my heart, deeply was the word told me, chong ming, (meaning, bright) because I never thought he would be, I never thought he would be able to learn and study and I was, I was really excited, so when I got home I told my wife, hey, have you seen his report card, have you seen his report book, I was so excited about it not because he’s bright or what, but because God is so good in Shawn’s life and as a answer to our prayers. I was moved, not because of his intelligence, or anything like that, but I was moved by God’s love.

Time stamp in audio 0:08:19.7.

Maybe, in your life, you can think of God’s provisions, answers, blessings to you and they are great tokens. They are great reminders of His love. But you know something, that’s not what John is talking about. Yes, God has been very good to Shawn, to Winnie and myself, but that’s not the kind of love, he’s talking about. You say, why? Because of its something even greater than that. What we have, yes it is amazing, but it is nothing, compared to what He has done for us.

You see, John, he says “See what kind of love.” John must have experienced, many kinds of love, many experiences and incidence of God’s love, but he says this is not what I’m talking about, what I’m talking about is this, very, very, unique aspect, shown in my life and that is, “We should be called the children of God.”

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.(1 John 3:1 ESV)

Time stamp in audio 0:09:20.2.

You see, so often we think God’s love is seen when he gives me tio beh pio (sound like – and meaning colloquilly meaning I hit the lottery. OK, I hope none of you buy Toto. God’s love is seen to me when I have this sickness and He cured me out of it. Now these are great things. Let’s not say that they are not important, but, I am saying if you put this side-by-side with what he is saying here, these things pale in comparison to the amazing love of God in calling us His child. We don’t understand how rotten and sinful and filthy we are, so we failed to grasp how amazing this salvation is, that we were children of disobedience, children of wrath, we belong to our father the devil that he would now call us children. That He will cleanse us, wash us, justify us, forgive us and call us children. No more an enemy, not even a servant nor a friend. He says, my child, not a child of Bill Gates, not a child of a president or a king, but a child of God. He says this is amazing.

If you today were to adopt children, you go to the center and you, you want to adopt a kid, what do you look for? Almost invariably people look at the physical appearance of the child. They ask the parents, the natural parents, they ask the agency, does this child have any disease, can you tell me more about the parents? Why? because we want to adopt a child who is healthy and beautiful and wholesome. Nobody today would say, Oh, I know he has congenital heart disease, I want him as my child; very rare. Oh, I know he has genetic disease, he’s deformed, he has HIV and I want to adopt him, very rare. But you know something about God, He adopted us as children, when we were ugly, deformed, diseased, in our sins and He says, “You are My child, you’re My heir, you are co-heirs with Jesus Christ. Whatever is in Jesus bank account, is in your bank account, you’re joint account holders, you are heirs and co-heirs with Christ. I do not just call you a servant, I do not call you a friend, you are my child, you’re an heir and you have all things.

Time stamp in audio 0:12:02.2.

Most of all, you have Me. What, amazing potapos love and this is not just a legal transaction. This is an actual transformation, because he does not just say, you shall be called, but, so we are.

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.(1 John 3:1 ESV)

So it’s just, not just a name or title, it is your nature that will be changed, not just a position you have, but your person is elevated, that He will save you from the power and a filth and the contamination of sin, to have a heart that loves Him. That you will have a heart hates sin, that you will pursue Him, that you will be truly glorious and righteous and holy, He made you really His son. This is amazing! And that’s why, throughout history people write Christian songs that center on God’s love. For example, when this song was sung before in church,

My song is love unknown,
My Saviourís love to me;
Love to the loveless shown,
That they might lovely be.
O who am I, that for my sake
My Lord should take, frail flesh and die?

The writer says, my song is love unknown, he could have easily said, my love is love, my song is love, potapos, it’s out of this country, it’s out of this world, nobody has known this world, this love. What kind of love, my Savior’s love to me, love to the loveless shown, to those who deserve nothing, to those who are ugly, to those who are deformed, to those who will never love God on his own, He loved us why, so that we might lovely be.

God’s love is not given to the lovely, it is given to the ugly so that we might become lovely. That’s the magnitude and the amazing thing about God’s love and I say to you today, if you are truly a recipient of God’s love, if you’re truly a recipient of the good news of Jesus Christ, that He died, to save you from your sins, you will have a sense of wonder and awe in your life.

Do you really know you’re Christian, let me ask you, do you awe in amazement? This is the litmus test, because if you are a receipient of this astounding grace, you walk in your life, knowing this is miraculous, how could God save me?

Time stamp in audio 0:14:57.4.

Suppose today, in the good old days, when you work and are at the end of the month you turn up at the boss’ office and he will look at your work schedule and pay you, that you turn up like this one day, you say, boss, I work for 25 days this month and this is supposed to be my salary. And then he gives you your cheque, he gives you your cash, he gives you your money, when you take the money, do you say, boss, this is amazing, you gave me my salary, you are so good, would you do that?

If you are like that any boss would love to have you work for them. None of us do that, you say why? Because when you turn up at the end of the month, what you say, I worked for it. When you received that money, you say thank you, boss, this is what we’ve agreed upon, but you realized deep in your heart, you deserved it.
And if you are someone who things that Christianity, all the way to God is what you work for, you will never have the sense of wonder. So, you say, of course, I am a saved, of course, I am a Christian, I go to church, I helped the poor, I give to charity, I do so many things in church, of course, you are filled with a sense of wonder at yourself.

Time stamp in audio 0:16:16.3.

But, the true man or woman who has been touched by grace says, how can it be, that God, you will save me, this is astounding, amazing love. That’s what Charles Wesley, he says,

And can it really be, I mean, this is really beyond my comprehension, Wesley says that I should gain an interest in the Savior’s blood. Why, because I caused His pain, I brought nothing but pain, to my Savior, but He pursued death for me. He did not stumble into death, He pursued death for me. Amazing love, how can it be, that You, my God, should die for me.

And can it be that I should gain
An intírest in the Saviorís blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

He says that he is amazed and shocked at the amazing love of God.

Time stamp in audio 0:17:16.3.

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.
(1 John 3:1 ESV)

See what kind of love, that amazing love, that filthy, disobedient ugly and deformed people like as we are, now the heirs of God, children of God, this kind of love. Is out of this world, because it is unconditional. The Bible tells us.

but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
(Romans 5:8 ESV)

God loved us while we were still sinners, we were not seeking Him, we were His enemies, we hated Him, we would spit at Him, in our lives, but He loved us. The world has not known such unconditional love.

I was speaking to someone this week about adoption, she was adopted, I asked,why were you adopted? And she said, this is because my mother who adopted me, wanted to someone to take care of her when she gets old. That’s one of the ways people provided for themselves and of course there is love shown during the years of upbringing, but there is still a reason behind it. But God loves us, because He loved us. He didn’t need anything from us, He is not needy as if oh, you must love me otherwise I’m not satisfied, I’m not supremely joyful. No He didn’t need us, but He saved us and loved us.

Time stamp in audio 0:18:37.7.

This morning as I was taking a cab to this place, the taxi uncle, is is just venting his frustrations, so interesting. He says, aiyah look at this stupid wedding invitation, it’s in the afternoon, never say, I went in the night and it was all over. (Laughter in the congregation). And, he complained and complained and then he mentioned that his wife nagging at him, I say this, literally, his words, this old woman, this smelly woman, kept nagging at me, I cannot take it, I cannot take her nagging he says, “If only I could kill her” (Laughter in the congregation). Wow, I am in his car, he says, if, if, if I could, I would have killed her. Then, he says, is because of his karma, bad karma that he accumulated in his past life. He says, never mind, I would pay off this debt and when I pay off this debt of my bad karma, I would leave her.

Time stamp in audio 0:19:42.2.

He is married for 40 over years. (Laughter in the congregation). But, he is waiting for the day to divorce. I am sure, 40 over years ago, when they were patohing (colloquial for dating), they were going together and when they were married, she must be head over heels over her, oh, you are so pretty, oh, you are so beautiful. Oh, my life would be so happy and we would be happily ever after, he thought it would be true, but, 40 years later, if I could, I would kill you. (Laughter in the congregation).

Because she doesn’t meet his needs anymore, because he doesn’t find joy in her anymore, because he is irritated by her from now onwards and therefore he says, I don’t love you anymore.

but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
(Romans 5:8 ESV)

This love is so out of the world, when we irritate not irritate, we grieve God, we rebel against Him, He gave His Son for you, it’s an amazing love. This love is in a sense unfathomable, do you realize that, there is no way you and I could really understand God’s love. Yes, we may talk about it, I’m even preach it, but there’s no way I can really understand fully God’s love, because Jesus tells me this love is, it’s so, so infinite in its magnitude, he says, God, I pray to You that the world may know that You sent Me and You love that even as You love Me.

Ö..so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.
(John 17:23 ESV)

Can you start to wrap your head around this simple phrase that You love them as You love Me. I say nobody here can really understand how much the Father loves the Son, no way, the infinite God, Who is love, would love the infinitely worthy Son of God. Wow, I can figure it out. And that same love is the love God has for you; it blows my mind. And if you still don’t get it, he prays again that the love with which you have loved me, may be in them.

I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.î
(John 17:26 ESV)

Why, shocking, matchless, infinite love, therefore, Paul prays :

óthat you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
(Ephesians 3:17-19 ESV)

I pray that you will understand more and more and more about the dimensions of God’s love, but let me tell you something, it surpasses knowledge. He says, I pray that you know more and more and but like the galaxy is always expanding and expanding and it is endless. It is, it is boundaries. There is no boundary, it’s the infinite matchless love and again, the songwriters help us so much, this song, the love of God, is apparently scribbled or scrawled on to the walls of an asylum.

The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell.
It goes beyond the highest star
And reaches to the lowest hell.
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled
And pardoned from his sin.

Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made;
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.

O love of God, how rich and pure!
How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endureó
The saintsí and angelsí song.

People feel this guy is a mad man, but he wrote these words in an asylum, he says,

The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell.
It goes beyond the highest star
And reaches to the lowest hell.

God’s love reaches to the most defiled, exceeds all sin and guilt.

The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled
And pardoned from his sin.

Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made;
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.

Time stamp in audio 0:23:47.5.

Everyone of us a scribe, every blade of grass, a pen, every stretch of this heavens, a parchment and every drop of water in the oceans, ink, we could never finish writing about the love of God. We could never, unfathomable, unsearchable, love of God.

He goes on to say,

O love of God, how rich and pure!
How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endureó
The saintsí and angelsí song.

This is an unbeatable love. It is an everlasting love,

the LORD appeared to him from far away.
I have loved you with an everlasting love;
therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.
(Jeremiah 31:3 ESV)

This is a word spoken to Israel, Jeremiah, spoken to Israel. I tell you, today, look around you in the world events, look at world history and God is saying, look at my people Israel, they are the evidence of my undying love for Israel. By the way, Israel messed up big time, many times, messed up. Really, really rebelled sin against God, but you know what God never gave up on Israel.

Time stamp in audio 0:25:02.0.

So, God is using, all these tokens and reminders of His amazing love for us and so, Paul with great confidence is saying,

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 8:38-39 ESV)

I am sure that neither death nor life nor angels or rulers nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. It is an unbeatable love.

Nothing separates you from God’s love, because it was unconditional to begin with. It is deep and wide in its magnitude and it lasts forever more. Even when we fail Him, even when we disappoint Him, even when we grieve Him with our sins, He doesn’t stop loving you. He doesn’t stop, He doesn’t love you any less, even when you fail, that’s why so out of this world.

Time stamp in audio 0:26:01.4.

Back to Shawn, I was teaching Shawn maths. Okay, this is the kiasu parent again, Chinese, English, mathematics, I was teaching Shawn maths. Three weeks ago, I hate to teach him maths, because it really gets me, how come you can’t get it, so, I was teaching him addition. Addition, in a tens, So 57+23, you are supposed to add up, la, of course not mental sums, but writing it down, you have written is it? So, I was teaching him mathematics, I did it over and over again and every time, the question is set, he looks around and, you know, he gets distracted, he doesn’t quite pay attention and I taught and I taught and I taught and I taught until I tor (colloquial for vomit) (Laughter in the congregation), until my blood began to boil. I know I wanted to help Shawn of course, that’s why we started maths, I wanted to help him think, acquire some skills in logic and thinking and I realized I’m getting nowhere, I got frustrated, I got really impatient and began to shout at him.

Time stamp in audio 0:27:12.9.

When you’re teaching, you shouldn’t shout lah. (Laughter in the congregation) but I shouted at him, I even begin to hit him. I was really worked up. I was so very… One thing that really gets me with worked up today is teaching mathematics. (Laughter in the congregation. Seriously, I lost myself, I think. I just shouted at him and he became, he, he was terrified.

I know you look at me differently from now onwards, (Laughter in the congregation) but, he was really terrified. He started to cry. Well, we, we, well we got through the exercise. I think he learned something and for the next day and that was Saturday and the next day, on Sunday I was playing with Shawn, I said Shawn come, look at daddy, Shawn, daddy wants to say, I am sorry. He look at me and says, why? he is clean forgotten that day, yesterday because he is playing with his Lego and stuff like that. He says why? Because, daddy shouldn’t have shouted at you and hit you yesterday. I was angry for the wrong reason. Honestly, I love you, Shawn, and I’m sorry. He didn’t know how to react, (shook his head in a funny way) (Laughter in the congregation) Paiseh (colloquial for embarrassed) I don’t know what, but I think he had a tear in his eye. Now I love Shawn. I love Matthias, I love my kids, but is not the same kind of love as God’s that is unbeatable. Frustration got the better of me, impatience got the better of me and when I think about God’s love for me and I think about what I did to my son, I said, “This is out of the world.” So constant, so deep, so infinite, so matchless, so unconquerable, the amazing love of God, see what kind of love. John says

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.
(1 John 3:1 ESV)

This is not of the world love, it’s not just God’s healing you of cancer, not, these are great things, don’t tell wrong but when you put it beside how Jesus came to give you sonship, to give you heirship, it’s amazing.

Time stamp in audio 0:29:47.9.

I want to and with one word here in this verse, it’s the first word “see”

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.
(1 John 3:1 ESV)

The word means to behold, to inspect, to examine, to study, to discover, to discern, to look very closely. It means, don’t just glanced over it, don’t just gloss over it, but to really work into your heart, to really, really get it. And by the way, when John wrote this in the Greek, this is in the imperative mood, the indicative mood and in imperative mood are that indicative is about a suggestion, something that is suggested to you, but the imperative mood is something that is commanded of you.

John wrote this in the imperative, he is commanding us, look,see, behold, examine, don’t just gloss over it, because it’s so short, don’t just forget it, because you take God’s love for granted, but really get it, see it, examine it, because this is what you need. You know when I prepared, I was preparing 1John and I did glance and gloss over over verse one, wow, this is so common, we’ve always been talking about love in this church, but I said, I can’t do that, if he says this is a command. Behold, and this morning, as a church we need to behold, we need to behold because we really to, because we live in a very broken and hurting world and some of you are living with scars. What scars, past hurts and it is deep in your life today, and you know it. You may come from a broken family, your parents are divorced and you always had that sense of inferiority. You, you feel that you are ugly, not accepted because you have a broken home. Or, maybe some of you today are divorced, you are a divorcee, there is a scar in your life and maybe, as a child have been abused, you never had love from God, errr from your parents, or, maybe when you are young you were deprived of certain things then and you grew up with this struggle with identity, with acceptance, and, and you feel inadequate, you feel unloved and so, in life, you’re craving, and grabbing love, but deep down down inside, you are struggling, you try to be someone you are not. And you are tired, and you are frustrated because you been looking at your scars.

Time stamp in audio 0:32:16.6.

John says to you, look at God and His love. We all have scars, but when we were ugly and deformed and diseased, He still chose to love you, He pursued death for you. He gave His Son for you, let this love be assimilated into your life, let this love fill your heart, don’t just gloss over this. This is therapeutic, this is healing, this is God’s Word speaking to you, He is calling you to finding joy, supreme joy in Him.

Time stamp in audio 0:32:56.1.

Some of you today, struggle with present struggles, not past, but right here, right now. You struggle, because you’re going through some trials, your father is sick, your son is not well, your company is folding, your relationship is breaking up and you feel like nobody cares. Your family has forsaken you, your friends have forsaken you and you feel like nobody cares. See what kind of love, not just a sentimental feeling, but there is something very objective, something very clear, that 2000 years ago, Jesus came for you and God is saying, I love you, even as you go through the sufferings of life.

Some of you here are single people and you struggle with love, because, as singles, unless you are a 15-year-old and then, no problem, but if you are older, you are single and you say, I must have a partner, because otherwise I’m not loved, I cannot experience love. You know, someone wisely said, God never promises us a spouse, He doesn’t say that in the Bible”, so what if God has called you to singlehood, does it make it seem like God doesn’t love you as much? No, he says, behold, my love.

Time stamp in audio 0:34:29.8.

Some of you today are in strife. You are disagreeing with someone, bad blood has come about and your mind today is transfixed on his picture, his face. If you could, you print it out and paste it on the wall and you can can play darts on it. I want to get back at him. You know, if are fixated on the man and you are not fixated on God’s love, you will never be able to forgive. See what kind of love.

Maybe today you want to grow as a Christian and you are frustrated with your own spiritual journey, you say, where do I start, how can I be a better follower of Jesus Christ? Luther says one of the necessary things to discipleship to Jesus is to know the Gospel and to teach the Gospel. He uses very violent terms, he says, you must beat the Gospel into your head, wah, quite violent but it’s true, you could be drive it into your head and into your heart. He says, you need that because the devil, the world and the flesh is a powerful triumvirate to lead you away from God, through lies and deception, he weakens you and the best counteroffensive to that is that we will be filled in the heart with the love of God in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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You see, christian living is not about following a set of rules and regulations like why can’t I do, but that you are motivated on the inside by God’s love and you say, how can I even do that if God loves me. You see, it is not about outward legalism, it’s the expulsive power of a new affection and the expulsive power of a new affection comes when you realize, see what kind of love the father has given to us.

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.
(1 John 3:1 ESV)

My friends, that’s the key to giving of ourselves radically to discipleship to Jesus. This is the key to us living a self abandoned life that will serve Him, will not give the turkeys of life when it’s convenient, when it’s easy, when whatever I have left in my pocket or in my time I give to God. No, you’ll be like a John. You are so amazed by love that even if God calls you to enter the cauldron of boiling, you say, I will go, because I’ve seen and my heart is absolutely stunned and shocked and amazed and blessed and enthralled and thrilled, with the supreme indescribable love of God.

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How’s your heart today? My friends, would you, would you have the Gospel saturate your life, would you read the Scriptures to see God’s love, would you read good books today about God’s love? Would you be with God saturated people and to share and to teach and to say to one another God, would you preach to yourself, God’s love, would you sing about His Majesty would you meditate, would you ponder, would you soaked yourself in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, would you do what John commands, See what kind of love.

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.
(1 John 3:1 ESV)

You want to be a lady that gives 23 year old frozen turkeys to God, or would you want to be like a John, who will give yourself to Jesus Christ, because Jesus Christ gave Himself for you, behold what love, it begins right here.

Let’s bow for a word of prayer together. I stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene and wonder how He could love me a sinner, condemned, unclean, how marvelous, how wonderful and my song shall ever be. Is that the song of your life, is that the language from your mouth, is that the direction of your discipleship, how marvelous, what kind, what country of love is this.

Maybe today you are having scars or struggles, or you sincerely desire closer discipleship to Jesus, you want to give your life for Him and though you theoretically say you want to but you never been able to. Maybe it’s because you’ve been trying too hard in your own strength, would you begin this morning and say, God would you help me to really behold, your love, not just this morning, but every day of my life. Then my Christian journey will be a work of wonder, of amazement that your love for me, that calvary would not become an old, old story, but it will be my story every day of my life.

My song is love unknown my Savior’s love for me, love to the loveless shown, that they might be lovely, what love to make You love me today, you lovely people would you love and would you live for you lovely Lord. Behold what love, there is healing, there’s comfort for your soul today. There is strength, there’s passion that can be ignited with God’s love today, wherever you are, would you come to God that we, that He will make you a lovely person, made in the image of Jesus Christ, beyond your scars, beyond your wounds, beyond your hurts. What a joy, what power and what grace.

Maybe today, are here and you say, I do not know this love. What can I do to get this love. Do I have to earn it? No, you don’t, you can’t, you never could deserve it. But this love is poured out to those who would repent and believe in Jesus Christ. So my friends, if you’re here today you do not know Jesus, I say to you, the Bible tells you to repent and believe in Jesus Christ. Because Jesus tells you, come unto me, all ye who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest, because the Bible tells us, look unto me all ye ends of the earth, and be ye saved. There is salvation, there is the offer, the genuine offer of God’s love for you today if you would turn and believe. Jesus loves you, for God so loved the world He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life. May this be the day for you to repent and believe in Jesus Christ.

Father, we thank You for Your Word, we failed to really grasp Your love, You know it. And so we pray this morning that Your Spirit will take whatever has been taught and heard and received and drive it deep into our hearts, anchor it there that we will always live and serve from that foundation of amazing love. May our lives be radically transformed and loyal and given for You because You 1st loved us. We asked this in Jesus Name, Amen.

Do You Want to Go Away As Well

Do You Want to Go Away As Well

Sermons, Sermons by Pastor Jason Lim, The Real Life Series, Transcriptions0 comments

“Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth. Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father also. Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that he made to us[e]—eternal life. I write these things to you about those who are trying to deceive you. But the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie—just as it has taught you, abide in him.
1 John Chapter 2 verses 18 to 27

Download the sermon slides: SERMON-2014-10-19

We come now to the book of 1John and chapter 2. In particular, we are looking at verses 18 to 27, so it’s a rather long stretch, quite unusual because normally, we look at 2, 3 verses at one go, but today, I thought that we should look at verses 18 to 27 of chapter 2, at one shot because it gives a coherent picture as to what John, the writer is saying in 1John.

Well a story is told about four boys who are notorious for always playing truancy. They come late for school, they skipped school and one day they came late again. So the teacher got them together and says, “What is the excuse this time?”. The boys says what excuse, it’s true, our car broke down, because one of the tires were punctured, was punctured. The teacher was not very convinced, but as they kept explaining, they sounded, more and more convincing and so the teacher put them to a test.

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Raise up your hands, he says, and they raise their hands and it was spotlessly clean. So, the teacher knows, this may not be quite true, let me put you through another test. He gives to each of the student, a piece of paper and a pencil and he sends them each to the 4 corners of the classroom and he says to them, now, I want you to answer a question. Tell me, which is the tire that is punctured? And of course, all 4 of them gave different answers.

You know, sometimes, we need tests to show up what is true or what is false and in the book of 1st John, the apostle is giving us tests to see if we’re really have eternal life, if we really have the Zoe the life from God, are you really a Christian. Because, so often we assumed we are believers of God. We assumed we have a changed, we change our name, we change the way we use Christian words, we change our Sunday morning activities and we think that makes us a Christian. John says no, there are real objective tests by which you can know for sure if you like child of God. He says number one, this is a test, you need to pass and that is the test of obedience. Not sinless perfection but sincere progression. In other words a true Christian will keep growing in obedience, not perfect but he’s growing, but the general direction of his life, is I want to and I do obey God’s Word. That’s what a Christian is all about. He doesn’t obey to be saved but if he is truly saved he will obey.

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Number 2, a second test is that he will love for one another. He will love the people God loves. He will love the brothers and sisters in Christ because his heavenly Father loves his brothers and sisters, so this will be the 2nd mark of a true believer. So someone who is bitter and harboring animosity and hatred against another brother, you really have to ask yourself, are you willing to repent, are you truly a believer.

Number 3, you will not just love God and love one another, but you will not love the world. You will not be strickened with worldliness. The world will not dominate your heart, you will love not the world. So, notice, these 3 tests, one is with regards to the Word, two is with regards to the church, three, is with regards to the world, and the fourth which are going to look at today is with regards to time, because a true believer will endure. A true believer through the passage of time will keep on believing. He does not forsake and deny the Lord ultimately.

When Jesus was on earth, He was very popular, many people crowded around Him. In particular, there was a time when He performed an amazing miracle of 5 loaves and 2 fishes, multiplying to feed the thousands that were gathered around Him. They follow Jesus wherever He went, but Jesus came to a point of time when He said “I came to be the bread of life, you must eat My flesh and drink My blood. You must receive Me into your life in order to have eternal life, and when He spoke about these things and revealed that it is not really about the physical bread or physical fish. But the Bible tells us in John chapter 6, all of them except for 12 left Him.

Thousands came, thousands left and then Jesus turned to His 12, He asked them, do you want to go away as well? That is a question for you today, would you go away as well? Well Peter, the spokesman for the group, the 1st person to speak, he says, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life and we have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.

ìLord, to whom shall we go?
You have the words of eternal life,
and we have believed, and have come to know,
that you are the Holy One of God.î

(John 6:68-69 ESV)

So, Peter says, even when people will forsake, even if people would leave, we will keep on believing. Today, you are looking at 1John, where the apostle says, in effect, the same thing.

He says they went out from us, they quit from following us, following the way of Jesus, together with us, but they were not of us. For if there had been of us, they would have continued with us, but they went out, that it might become plain that they are all, they all are not of us.

They went out from us, but they were not of us;
for if they had been of us, they would have continued
with us. But they went out, that it might become plain
that they all are not of us.

(1 John 2:19 ESV)

So John is saying, that the reality in this church, that he is speaking to, there’s some who have left, why? Because, like those who casually follow Jesus, they never really believed in Jesus. What’s true in Jesus’ time and John’s time is true today. Thousands of people go churches this morning, millions, I would say, millions upon millions, go to church this morning. Does that mean everyone is a true follower of Jesus Christ ? Maybe, but most probably not. And this question that Jesus asked the disciples were still, is still very relevant for us today, do you want to go away as well. You see a true believer will say, No I will stay, but a false believer, ultimately, one day, will say to Jesus, I want to go away.

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I share with you about church. When I referred to church today, I’m referring to the external visible church, alright. And in this church in this hall, we just have a few hundred of us, but even in this hall, they are 3 categories of people that can arise, in 1John chapter 2, number 1, in this church, there can be false believers. This is not very positive start, I know, but this is the reality.

The Bible tells us there will be false believers because he says in verse 19, they went out from us. These are people who were with us, but now they left the faith, they left Jesus Christ. It is not just leaving Gospel Light Christian Church, but they left Jesus entirely, they forsook their original profession of faith and they went out from us even though they were with us.

I mean they looked exactly like the believers, the true believers of God. They have Christian names, they use Christian lingo, they sing hallelujah praise the Lord, grace be to you. They say those things, they dress like a Christian, I mean, they, they changed the way they look, maybe on the outside. They come to church services on Sunday morning, to be part of, they may be part of this congregation, they may join your care group, they may even be serving together with you. But they went out.

They went out from us, but they were not of us;
for if they had been of us, they would have continued
with us. But they went out, that it might become plain
that they all are not of us.
(1 John 2:19 ESV)

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I’ve been in this church for 19/20 years. I remember those days where I had great friends in this church, but now that I look back, I realize some of these friends are no more with us, not that they went to another Bible believing church, but they totally leave the faith altogether. They won’t talk about Christ. They don’t want to talk about God, there is no desire for God, there is no desire to come back to church and that was 19 years ago, it has not changed since then. You say why?, I mean they were, they were attending Bible studies, they join every week, we went out, meet together, we serve.

But why, over the past 15 years, they have not been back and each year goes by these verses become more and more real. They went out from us even though they were with us. Ah!, Pastor, I know why they went out, because originally 19, 20 years ago there saved, but somehow in the middle of their journey, they lost their salvation. Now, that’s what people think, that a Christian loses his salvation. I say no, he did not lose his salvation., In fact, I will show you later on, nobody who is truly saved by God ever loses his salvation.

But what has happened is that they went out from us even though they were with us because they were not of us in the beginning, they were never really saved, they look saved, they acted like they were saved, they talked like they were saved but their hearts, were never really changed.

They went out from us, but they were not of us;
for if they had been of us, they would have continued
with us. But they went out, that it might become plain
that they all are not of us.

(1 John 2:19 ESV)

In Chinese, we have this saying, complete it for me, alright,

For all those who don’t understand, it means the stamina or strength of a horse is seen in the distance it travels. The heart of the man is seen best with the passage of time. How do you know a strong horse from a weak horse, how do you distinguish that? Run one step ? No one is ever going to tell, isn’t it, one step, both horses will be the same, but multiplied by 1,000,000 steps, then the strong horse is going to be shown up. The weak horse will be exposed.

How do you know the heart of a man ? Some of you date for one day, you get married, you you can’t tell lah, he may be a crook for all you know, lah, but if you date for 10 years, you probably know better lah, but even then, it’s never complete. But with the passage of time, you know a man’s heart.

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You see these people, are with the true Church of Christ, but they were never part of the kingdom of God in a real way. They looks like one of us, but they were never of us. So, with the passage of time, no wonder they would depart, from us. He says, for if they had been on us, they would have continued, they would have. If they are truly changed by God’s Spirit, if they have really received Zoe into their lives, they would have continued. But they went out, because they were not of us, they were false believers.

I think John can speak of this experientially. He had a group of close associates and one of them, one of them, turned out to be not of them. He preached with them, he did miracles with them, he learned from Jesus together with them, he was even the trusted treasurer for the group but Judas Iscariot eventually denied the Lord for 30 pieces of silver. Did Judas, lose his salvation? No, he’s shown up that he went out from us because they, he was not of us to begin with.

So, in the church today, a 1st category, a scary category is that of false believers, they sing, they raise their hands, they jump, and they cry, they may read the Bible, they use Christian words, but heart was never saved. Can it be you and if it is you, I pray today, it will be the day you will come to Jesus really for salvation and life. This is not a message to condemn you, this is a message to say, there is still forgiveness and hope in Jesus, don’t pretend, because what really matters is, do you have Zoe in your life.

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A 2nd category, in the church. Some of these false believers would move even further and become false teachers. Now I really don’t personally like to talk about these things, but this is found in Scriptures, and we faithfully declare. So I hope you, you realize I’m on a pet subject, oh, I love, to talk about, no, I hate to do that in a sense, but we have to do it because the Scriptures here says, very clearly “Children. It is the last hour and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore, we know that it is the last hour, they went up from us.”

Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us
(1 John 2:18-19 ESV)

So, actually, John is saying that these false teachers, these,antichrists, where did they come from? They come from the church, the external, visible church. If you think about it, many cults today, I can’t name those cults because of sensitivity, but if you have heard of Christian cults you can Google that, is all over. Most of the religious leaders, most of these cult leaders, Christian cult leaders, where do they come from? From Taoist, from buddhist background, no, they come from the church, they went out from us.

Jesus says, or rather, Paul tells us this in Acts 20, he has been with the church at Ephesus for 2 to 3 years. He says he’s been daily with tears, warning them that when he leaves, that fierce wolves, false teachers would come upon them, where do they come from? Some from outside and some from inside. They will be from among your own selves.

I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.
(Acts 20:29-30 ESV)

He could survey that church and he may not have an idea of who that false teachers would be, but they will come, they will arise from within you. That’s scary, that’s scary that false teachers would come from within us, but that is just another sign of the last days.

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We live in the last days. You say, how long has been last days, about 2000 years, from the time of John to now it’s 1900 over years, we are in the last days, and many antichrists have come.

It’s not unusual and John is not saying something strange because his Master, Jesus actually said “Many will come in my Name, saying, I am the Christ, and they will lead many astray.” These are signs of the end times. The reason is because you know that the antichrist is coming, he’s saying to the people, you know that the ultimate super villain, we have studied him in great detail in the book of Daniel. For those who are interested, referred, to our sermons in Daniel.

There is going to be the ultimate super villain. He’s called the antichrist, the lawless one, he will destroy, he will mislead, he would receive many people and he is the antichrist, I think with a capital A, but before that antichrist with a A comes, before the spirit of lawlessness is already at work. Satan is already at work and even within the church, he is moving and stirring people to arise as antichrist, antichrist with a small a, who go around teaching falsehood and leading people astray, away from Jesus. And so there are many, will come up, but you say, pastor, I don’t see so many leh?. I thought, just a few, but, how, how, how come it’s many, I don’t spot many. The reason why, it’s because they’re not obvious to you, they are not going to be saying, ” we are the antichrist church”, no church is called the antichrist church, today.

Have you ever found in antichrist church, they may call themselves cults openly, but they won’t say, I’m the antichrist church, it’s weird. You see, if you want to cheat, if you want to lie, if you want to lead astray, you don’t come in your red underwear and your horn and your pitchfork and say, I am the antichrist, I will lead you, you don’t do that,, what you do is you disguise.

Exactly what’s happening in 2nd Corinthians 11, no wonder, Satan doesn’t come and scare you right in the face. He disguises himself, so no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise, if his servants, false teachers are the servants of the devil. Yes, they serve themselves, they serve their belly, they serve their greed. But behind the scenes. The devil, like a great puppet master is using them and they are serving him and his servants likewise will also disguise themselves.

And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness.
(2 Corinthians 11:14-15 ESV)

So they come as the angels of light. Like I said, they are not going to come, saying, oh Jesus, don’t talk about Jesus, talk about some, no, no, no, they say, talk about Jesus, talk about grace, talk about goodness, talk about Bible, talk about these things. Use Christian lingo by all means, graduate from a Christian seminary, by all means. Disguise you see, so that you won’t suspect, so that if you’re not watching for it, you would think family church in the world is a good church, every church in the world and every preacher in the world, is a true preacher of Jesus Christ and when you believe that lie, that’s where he leads you astray.

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And it is so powerful because it is also coupled with great success on the outside. These false teachers don’t assume that they have small followings. The Bible tells us, they have big followings, many will follow. They will have many people going to their church, they have big services, big church buildings probably, if you go to their facebook or their twitter account, many followers, many likes, every statement like, like, like…very popular, very big, they may be very charismatic, very persuasive, very eloquent, very slick, very polished, highly successful and the great titles and credentials, graduated from this, study that, did this, did that and he looks so beautifully disguised on the outside.

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What’s more, the Bible actually tells us, they can perform, some of them can even perform great signs and wonders, now not all signs and wonders are from God, obviously. Back in Moses days, they were magicians in Pharaoh’s court who could perform this similar wonders, but they were not of God. And these false teachers are sleek, successful, subtle, powerful, with great signs and wonders and what they do is that they lead people astray.

For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.
(Matthew 24:24 ESV)

How do they do that? They lead by lies, they do all these great things on the outside, you buy into their personality, you buy into their church brand, as it were and they feed you lies. You know, pastor, don’t teach you lies, they teach very good truths. Look at their polls, look at their teaching, wah, very good sermons.

Hey, and I know that some little problems, no, no, overall, very good. Of course, it will be very good, of course, it would look generally wonderful. But look at how they actually slip in lies. The Bible says in 2nd Peter, false prophets also arose among the people. Just as there will be false teachers among you, Peter, Timothy, they all understand the same realities, and how they do it is that they secretly bring in is not going to be blatant, is not going to be obvious.

If it is obvious, he’s a lousy wolf in sheep’s clothing. No clothing, wah lau, a lousy, I will run away from you. But they’re smart, they are disguised, they are clothed.

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——————-

Secretly bring in. When I think about this secretly bring, secretly bring in I think about my friend, my neighbor are my neighbor’s name is Glenn. Glenn, if you watching, I’m sorry. But we use to play Monopoly together, play games together and whenever, I play Monopoly, I seem I always lose to him, I have no idea why. I thought my properties are more than his property, but I keep losing to him. And then I realize one day, when we were playing and we are all having fun, I saw him (slipped his hand motion) Wah, a few thousand dollars, just like that leh, because he’s the banker, huh, he takes the money and puts it into his pile, no wonder, he never loses, his money is never ending, he secretly brings in money.

Time stamp in audio 0:22:43.1.

Now of course he doesn’t want me to see it. And, if I’m not watching, I, I would not know. Do you realize that false teachers, watch you and when you are looking there, he takes a lie and inserts into your life. Secretly, it’s not going to be obvious; secretly tell you of something that would destroy your soul, destructive heresies. Not small problems; real fundamental problems and what he does is that he denies that Jesus is the Christ. Ultimately, this is the core, this is the heart of the Christian message, it is about Christ and he tells you that this Jesus is not Christ. This Jesus of the Bible, not Christ, he is not the chosen one, he is not the Messiah, he is not the Savior that God has sent. Let me tell you of another Jesus, let me tell you of another gospel, so they still call themselves apostles of Christ, but they are false. They use the name of Christ. This is the disguise, this is the way they get away with you, this is how they slip into your, your mind, I am a servant of Jesus Christ. Look at my titles, look at my church, look at my teachings, look at my popularity, look at the building, look at how God has blessed me, I am of God and listen to the message I have, this is how he slips right in and what he gives you, is not the true Jesus. What he gives you is not the true Gospel, he gives you another Jesus, he gives to another gospel, and because he is so slick and professional and polished, you put up with it readily.

For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, Ö. or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough.
(2 Corinthians 11:4-5 ESV)

Doesn’t matter if that is not quite according to the Bible, he’s such a charismatic man, he is such a powerful preacher, he has such a big church, so many people following you, he must be right.

Can you sense that reasoning? Do you know of friends who right now are in false teaching? This is how it works, it’s the same thing year after year, generation of the generation, the devil uses disguise. Subtly giving you a substitute Christ, not the Christ of the Bible. He uses his name, but is a pseudo-Christ, it is a counterfeit God and it is not the true God of the Bible and what happens is that you deny the Lord Jesus Christ.

For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
(Jude 1:4 ESV)

Yes, you say, Jesus, you claim Jesus, you pray to this name Jesus, but it is not the Jesus of the Bible, I’m sorry. Just because you call it Jesus doesn’t make it that you are praying and knowing and walking with the Jesus of the Bible. It’s another Jesus, you are actually denying our Lord.

No one in the last day, people would say, ” Lord, Lord, didn’t we do these things? I never knew you.” It’s not me, and what happens is that people not are now plunged into sensuality, lasciviousness or sinfulness.

For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
(Jude 1:4 ESV)

The mark of a false teaching church, is that the people of God are not trending toward godliness. They may talk all you want about loving God, grace and God loves me and so on, but their lives will go to the opposite direction. They lead to godlessness, they lead to sensuality, lasciviousness, that’s the word there, sinfulness. By their lives, you can know, by the fruit, you can see the tree. But you see, people who are deceived already, says, no lah, that’s okay just a few of them, God will forgive their sins. No, no, open your eyes, look at the lives of the people, look at the lives of the pastor, look at the lives of the preachers and you will know.

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That’s the end result. You see, they, they, they do that that because false teachers entice you by the sensual passions of the flesh, they know what the flesh wants.

ÖÖthey entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error.
(2 Peter 2:18 ESV)

So, they come up with a great disguise I’m an apostle of Christ, they give you a great message, whereby you can indulge in your sin, you can you can be satisfied with the sensual passions of the flesh. No wonder, they have a big following, no wonder, many people will follow the pernicious ways. And false teachers, do this out of greed.

And in their greed they will exploit you with false words.
(2 Peter 2:3 ESV)

They are not here to serve you, they are not here to help you, to grow you, they are here to exploit you. Note these words, exploit you. Why? Greedy, they want you and your money. The devil knows, man wants to be rich, be greedy and of course, with this willing partnership between him and a false teacher, he has a successful formula to sway and to lead many astray.

They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed.
(2 Peter 2:14 ESV)

They entice unsteady souls, they are not learned in Scripture, they do not have the necessary defense, and they are absolutely vulnerable and they have now trained their hearts in greed. It gets worse and worse and worse and worse.

Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.
(2 Peter 2:3 ESV)

Time stamp in audio 0:28:27.0.

God is still sovereign, even in the midst of great deception in the last days, we know that God is in control, but it is so sad, when we are not on our guard and we fall prey and we allow people to fall prey to false teachers. So they went out from us, sign of the last days, they come from within our churches, they are subtle but successful, they secretly bring in damnable heresies, gives you a substitute Jesus Christ, entices you with sensuality, gives you what you want, gives you what you are excited about, but it leads you to sinfulness, it leads you to deny Christ, they do it, because they are selfish, they do it because they are greedy and their judgment will not be withheld. In the midst of such an environment where we have false believers, where we have false teachers, it’s a very intimidating environment, don’t you think?

Time stamp in audio 0:29:29.8.

It is a very hostile environment, even in the church, yet the Bible tells us, there is a 3rd category of people, they are the true believers and this is the amazing thing about God’s work in the midst of so many counterfeits, in the midst of so many false teachers, the true believers hang on to truth.

They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. (1 John 2:19 ESV)

He says they went out from us, but they were not of us, for if they had been of us, they would have continued. It’s amazing, they will continue, they won’t fall out. Yes, they may be tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine, they may be disturbed for a moment, but ultimately they will continue with us. They will keep believing in Jesus Christ, they will not be ultimately deceived and again, Jesus said, these words for false Christ and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray if possible, even the elect.

For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.
(Matthew 24:24 ESV)

How thankful I am for the words, if possible. You take away these two words, if possible, we are done for, isn’t it? False Christ will lead astray, even the elect, that will be horrendous. Thank God for the words if possible, that means it is impossible. They will not be successful in leading astray the true elect, those were chosen and secured by God.

They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. (1 John 2:19 ESV)

They will continue with us. You say, why? Is it because the elected people are very smart, God chooses the smart ones, God chooses the alert ones? Wah is, is that the reason, is it the reason being in us? I tell you the reason is not in us. The reason is in God. The reason why they will continue with us is because John explains in verse 20,

But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge.
(1 John 2:20 ESV)

You have been anointed by the Holy One. The word anointing is used in the Old Testament of a king who is drizzled? as it were, with olive oil. It’s a picture of God’s anointing, God’s blessing the Holy Spirit empowering him. In today’s day and age of course, we don’t anoint ourselves with oil, we turn greasy and oily, we are anointed today by the Holy One with the Spirit of Christ. And because of this anointing, because of the work of the Holy Spirit in us, if you truly believe in Jesus, you have knowledge. This knowledge in the Greek is not one that is gained by experience, it is the other word that is intuitive knowledge, you know intuitively, you know, because the Holy Spirit teaches you.

But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie
(1 John 2:27 ESV)

This anointing teaches you about everything, and is true and is no lie. No wonder you will not sway, because that’s the work of the Holy Spirit in your heart, leading you at every step calling out to you and establishing you.

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
(John 14:26 ESV)

So, the Bible tells us, this is an affirmation of what Jesus has called in John 14. The Holy Spirit will teach you all things. John 15:26,

But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.
(John 15:26 ESV)

The Spirit of truth, He will bear witness about me.

John 16:13,

When the Spirit of truth comes,
he will guide you into all the truth
(John 16:13 ESV)

The Spirit of truth will guide you into all the truth. And this is just an affirmation of the old testament teaching of the new covenant. That there will come a day, when God will take away the stony heart and replaced with a heart of flesh and he will send His Spirit so that we don’t have to ask anyone who is the Lord, we know who is the Lord, because that’s the work of the Spirit, the anointing, the promise of the Comforter of the Holy Spirit in the elect, the children of God.

Time stamp in audio 0:33:40.6.

And therefore, even in the midst of great deception, they continue with us, they endure until the end.

Gospel light Christian church, in our congregation, I wish everyone is a true believer. In reality, however, according to the Bible, is that there will be, and they may be false believers. And sadly, some with the passage of time, may turn out to be false teachers, they went up from us and to become liars, they deny Christ and they lead people astray. But, we thank God that they are true believers as well. I want to close with some applicative thoughts.

Great Deception in the Last Days

1. We live in days of great deception and Jesus tells us don’t be blur, please, don’t be asleep, don’t be complacent, don’t take things for granted, but be on guard.

For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand.
(Mark 13:22-23 ESV)

You see, some of us, we look for churches without a mindfullness today, now, if you are in GLCC Gospel Light, I hope you will not keep looking around (huh, huh) we hope you will serve and grow together with us. But if you online, if you listening somewhere and you are looking for a church today, what is ultimately most important is, does the church teach, preach, live truth. That’s what really what matters.

Does the church live, preach, teach the Jesus of the Bible., You see, so often, people look for churches like this, I am I want, aiyah (colloquial expression) to look for a church that makes me feel good, a church that I like that kind of music I like, that the kind of lightings I like, the pastor, I like, I must, I must go for the handsome type. I am not kidding I’ve heard people saying I like that church, because, pastor very handsome, wah lau (colloquial expression), like that also can. (Laughter in the congregation)

Time stamp in audio 0:35:47.2.

There are, I like that church because it is just beside my house. I mean, you’re not buying, you are not buying kang kong (a local vegetable ) or vegetables, you are looking for a church. Please, don’t look for things that are convenient, okay if they, if both churches preach the truth, by all means, you can consider secondary factors, but you don’t the secondary above the primary. The primary is number 1, are they faithful to God and His Word.

For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand.
(Mark 13:22-23 ESV)

Be on guard, that’s what it means. I think, a true church must be willing to expose errors, must be, if you preach truth, error will be shown and I think we got to be on guard this way, the church today, the leadership of any church must be willing to expose errors and not play compromise games, just to be popular, just to be accepted. We are called to be loyal to God, not to be popular. Now we must be all things to all men, but number 1 loyalty to Jesus Christ and His Word.

I also say that if we live in great deception today, there will be friends and family members, you have that are now in false teaching churches. What you do? What you do? Do you have a responsibility towards them? I think so.

Time stamp in audio 0:37:11.4.

In Jude, it says and have mercy on those who doubt, save others by snatching them out of the fire, to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh, you say,what is this all about.

And have mercy on those who doubt; save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.
(Jude 1:22-23 ESV)

If you read Jude, it is about false teachers again. And Jude is saying there will be people who are in a sense, victimized by false teachings. What do we do? 3 categories of people here. All are deceived or affected, but 3 categories. There are those who doubt, these are people who are confused, not very clear, but they are doubting now, they are being rocked, they are being enticed, that they are right at the door of that false teaching, they are not so sure, they are vacilitating, he says, have mercy on those. I think it means, go help them, save them.

But there is a 2nd, 2nd category, those who are in the fire already, these are the people who are convinced. Now quickly go and snatch them. That’s what Jude is saying, so there are those who are confused, those who are convinced and then there are those who are absolutely committed to false teaching.

Do we give up on them? No? We can still show mercy, but you have to be very careful with fear. You should hate even the garment stained by the flesh, you should be careful in helping them, in case you yourself get affected, but it doesn’t mean we give up on them.

These are days of great deception and right after service, 1st service I have people who tell me, yah, I have this and that and I mean it’s everywhere. There are many antichrist, many will follow, it’s not a small percentage of people, big number. The Bible tells us, to help, great deception in the last days.

Time stamp in audio 0:39:14.9.

Don’t be Surprised by Defection

Number 2, because there is great deception in the last days, don’t be surprised by defection, defection refers to people who depart from the faith, not that they leave a local church but that they leave Christ entirely. Don’t be surprised, don’t be shocked, there can be Judas, there can be the wheat and tares, they look so similar, but eventually they are different, and the Bible tells us

Now the Spirit expressly or clearly says that in later times some will depart from the faith. How, by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared.

Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,
(1 Timothy 4:1-2 ESV)

You know, deception is a partnership, it’s a super partnership, it’s a partnership between the devil and a false teacher, it’s also a super partnership between a false teacher and the person who is deceived. Three of them are happy, you know, in false teaching. They are very happy, the devil is happy because people are led away from Christ, the false teacher is happy because he gets his money and then those who are deceived I have the because they love to hear what they like to hear.

Time stamp in audio 0:40:31.7.

Happy happy happy, but when it comes to judgment, all will be tragically damned. Don’t be surprised that there will be defection because they love to hear these things, they, can we know them in advance, can we know these people who will drift and stray in advance? Is there any advance warning, just like the tsunami before it comes, there is and advance warning, can we have advance warning on, oh because I am not sure whether my family members, they would…is there any advance warning? I think so.

And I’ve actually experienced it with dealings with people. It is found in 2nd Timothy 4 where it says “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions and were turned away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.
(2 Timothy 4:3-4 ESV)

So what is it? Well there will be people who say, Wah, preaching the Bible is so boring. Can you give us something new? You know, you are always talking about the same things? When I hear that I need to improve myself. Number 1, that as a communicator, I need to be, maybe engaging in different ways better, but number 2 I’m a bit concerned because I’m afraid that you may fall into this category, when you cannot endure sound doctrine, you don’t want to hear the same good old truths of the Bible, you want something new, you want something exciting, you want something like a vision and a dream, God spoke to me and I tell you this and and you love these things, you love the new stuff.

Time stamp in audio 0:42:13.2.

Be careful. Paul tells Timothy “Teach the Word, preached the Word, but there will be people who will not like the word, but you still preach the Word because that’s what people need. But there will be people who have itchy ears not chiu jion (colloquial for each itching hands) how do you call that ears jion (meaning itchy ears) you just want to hear nice things, hoh, I just want to hear this, yes, there, there is something about us that loves to hear lies alright. Am I pretty? Yes, you’re very pretty. I have just used to, even not, may not be true, you also love to hear that lah, just human nature. Just a flash, and so we love to hear things we love to hear and we depart.

Now you may not say it, eh no lah hearing this, these are little errors only, it will not cause us to wander. No, no, no, no be careful. It will turn away and ultimately lead you to wandering off into myths. That’s how deception is, it doesn’t start blatantly, it starts subtly, secretly brought in and when your guard is almost down, you are you devoured by the evil one.

Time stamp in audio 0:43:41.1.

True Believers Hold on to the Gospel

Don’t be surprised by defection, but ultimately and lastly, true believers hold on to the Gospel. Real followers of Jesus Christ, even in the midst of great deception, even in the midst of great discouragement when people defect away from Jesus. They hold on to the Gospel. Paul or John says

Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. Keep holding on to it, let it stay in you.

Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that he made to usóeternal life.
(1 John 2:24-25 ESV)

It’s the old, old story of Jesus and His love. It’s the old old story of how He came as God’s Son to be man to die for our sins, He rose again, He finished it all and who will repent and believe, shall not perish but have everlasting life.Let that abide in you.

A true believer keeps holding on to this. This is the human aspect. The divine aspect as to why true believers hold on to the Gospel is because God will ensure you hold on, He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion. That’s the beauty about regeneration, that’s the beauty about God saving work in a man’s life.

Time stamp in audio 0:44:51.3.

Absolutely, permanent and life-changing and you must remember Jesus is still praying for you, God holds you, you will never lose that salvation if you are truly saved. So you see, how does God persevere a Christian in that he will ultimately be saved. He perseveres a Christian by working in us, both to will and to do. Do what? Hold on to the Gospel!

That’s how He works, it doesn’t work, He doesn’t work independent of you, such that oh, God has secured my salvation so I can anyhow depart from the faith, and I will still be saved, no, no, no. If you anyhow depart from the faith, it shows that you were never saved in the first place, you went up from us because you were not of us, but a person who truly has the grace of God in his life will have the perseverance of God, because he will continue to hold on to the Gospel and the reason why he will continue to hold on to the Gospel is because he has been anointed. It is not apart from God, apart from your perseverance. It is through your perseverance.

True Believers Hold on to the Gospel

True believers hold on to the Gospel, a an elderly man was about to die, he was sick and he got his family together, he can’t see very well and so he got his family and told them, can you flip the Bible to Romans chapter 8 where it says “For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor anything else, shall separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus”. His family came and place his finger on that verse. He says, are you there, yet? Yes, we have placed your finger on that verse. He says to them, “Now I can go. I had breakfast with you in the morning and tonight I shall sup with Jesus”. And indeed, he died that very time.

Here is a man who holds on to the Gospel till the day he dies. My friends, will you hold on to the Gospel to the day you die, because a true believer will do so. The question we have asked ourselves this morning.

Do You Want to Go Away As Well?

Multitudes say yes, but there will be those who says no, we will stay. To whom shall we go ? You alone have the words of eternal life.

Let’s bow for a word of prayer together. I understand this is a very difficult message, never pleasant, never pleasant to talk about these things. I guess it was never pleasant for Paul to speak about these things to the church at Ephesus when he had to warn them with tears everyday. Truth be told, I fear for many of you, I do, I hear what you say, I read what you post, and I’m concerned because not that you leave Gospel Light Christian Church, but that you will leave Christ, that you have itching ears, and depart from the truth.

My dear friends, my dear brothers and sisters, true believers and you’re unto the end, they hold onto the Gospel, even in the midst of great tribulation, they hold on. Will you hold on. Would you love truth, would this church be unashamed about saying, we are about truth, it’s not about hype, it’s not about fancy things, it’s not about how impressive we look on the outside, it’s just a faithful following of Jesus and His Word. Nothing more, nothing less.

Time stamp in audio 0:49:02.9.

Maybe this morning, you can think of your friends, who are right now in cults, in false teaching churches, maybe even your own family. I am not asking you to pull them out forcibly, you can’t, but would you pray for them, would you be concerned about them or would you say it’s fine, they would eventually come back, Jude tells us, save them out of fire.

Or maybe today, right here, right now, you have been a false believer. You have been coming to this church, day after day, week after week, year after year, you are active in care groups. You may be even active in serving people. But today, you know in your heart, you’re not a Christian because you don’t see any signs, you don’t see obedience. You don’t see, a growing love for others, you are still loving the world and if there is great trials today, you know you will give up on your faith. Then I tell you, you never have the real faith. Would you humble yourself today, honestly humble yourself and come to Jesus Christ, would you do that?

I don’t want to be mean, that’s not my purpose, I am not speaking this message as if I want to push you guys away, no. I really hope you will come to know Jesus. Jesus saves, He can change your heart. He can give you the anointing, the indwelling Spirit, He will, if you humble yourself, turn from sin and come Him. Whatever the Lord is speaking to you, would you make a decision, prayer, a commitment before Him. Would you pray for Gospel Light Christian Church, and for all Bible believing, living, preaching churches in this nation and across the world that God will keep His church pure, to allow His truth to sound out amongst the nations.

You see there’s so much deception, there’s so much background noise. I actually think that there is more false teaching than true teaching in the world today. What does the church, the true church do about it? Would you pray, would you preach, would you share, would you live this truth.

Don’t be fooled by superficial things folks, don’t be fooled by music and lights and dance and dress and appearance. It’s not about these things, for the Bible, about truth, about the true Jesus, of the Bible. Father, thank You for this day, we thank You for Your Word that still speaks to us today. I pray for those who are deceived, have mercy to draw them back, through Your people, through Your children, draw them back.

I pray today that You will guard this church, from falsehood, from lies, from deceit, from insincere liars. I pray, You will guard our pulpit. I pray today for all our friends seated here, Lord, You know all our hearts. We all look like we are following You, but maybe not all yet, and so be gracious to call each one of us truly to that Zoe life, the eternal life of God. Bless Your church, bless each one seated here. I pray that Your love will fill our hearts and draws to Yourself. Thank you for Christ, the true Christ, God’s only Son, who came to be man, God man that He may die for our sins, save us from our sins, not just from the penalty but from the lifestyle from the power of sin. We thank You, we praise You, we thank You for the privilege of knowing You, we asked all this now in Jesus Name, Amen.

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