Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Getting back into the Word| Chris

This message was preached  by Chris at Word of Grace Church on April 24th, 2016. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here


Habakkuk 3: 17-18- “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Saviour.” Because I rejoice in him, if everything else should go wrong, still I can be content.

George Muller said that “It is essential for joy in the lord continue that the scriptures be read regularly.” We began this year with an encouragement to be in the Word.  

Q. How are we doing with the word? Maybe you are in the need of a reset.

Mark 1:1-8: “The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God, as it is written in Isaiah the prophet:“I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way. A voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’” And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River. John wore clothing made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And this was his message: “After me comes the one more powerful than I, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.””

When we read this passage, we might be thinking, there is so much weird stuff here- Eating honey and bugs and wearing camel hair in the heat. A lot of those seemingly weird details are actually incredibly valuable. They are not random at all. Things that would be obvious to the original audience would really make sense.

Q. John the Baptist- what's his deal? Eating bugs in the desert, etc. 

When it comes to his clothes:
2 Kings1:8- Elijah the Tishbite wore similar stuff. Mark includes the details of the dress of John the Baptist, it is a big deal. People recognized him by his clothes. He was a prophet.
Matt 11:7-10. People saw the clothes and knew that he was a prophet.

Q. What was John proclaiming?
They see him, they know who he is, they go into the wilderness and get baptised.

Q. Why the wilderness?
John in the wilderness. A voice crying in the Wilderness.

Isaiah 9:1 speaks about wilderness- Why are these places blessed?
Ezekiel 36:24 also refers to the same place. The people during the time of Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah were rebellious. The first places that fell to invasion were Galilee.
God makes us a promise during this time that after a time of discipline I will bring you back into fellowship. 

Q. How was he going to come? The same way the conquering army came, to redeem his people. Then John appears in the very spot that God spoke of. Proclaiming make the path straight. What's that about? The prophesy itself is difficult to understand.

Every culture has phrases that are understood in context. The first part of the prophesy is given by John. People are supposed to understand what he is referring to.

Isaiah 40:9- 28 This is who is being proclaimed and whose path is being made straight in the wilderness. That's why people were being baptized for repentance of their sins. The knowledge of God that they have from Isaiah propels them to know his greatness.
Now we see that's it's from the very beginning that it's the gospel of Jesus Christ. What is so good? It is the that the very God we just saw is coming to take his redeemed. His power is limitless

Prepare the way of the Lord- A prophet after 400 years is proclaiming. All these weird details fall into place as we labour to understand the Bigness of the God who is coming.
Mark 1:7- After me comes one who is mightier the strap of his footwear

Q. Why is he talking about sandals?
It is a way of showing respect for sure, but it also means that he is coming as a man. The very God who accounts the nations as nothing is coming as a man to redeem his people and has come and has redeemed. And he didn't leave us alone. He filled is with His Spirit and His Word and that we might continue on in the path.

We were challenged at the beginning of the year to stay in the Word. We know its power and its beauty.

Isaiah 40: 6-8: A voice says, “Cry out." And I said, “What shall I cry?” “All people are like grass, and all their faithfulness is like the flowers of the field. The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of the Lord blows on them. Surely the people are grass. The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever."


If you need to do-over, this is the day to do it. If you want to dwell with him, you don’t have to wait. You can do it right now. The Word of the Lord will stand forever.

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.
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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

What are we here for? | Justin J


This message was preached  by Justin Jaykumar at Word of Grace Church on April 17th, 2016. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here

What are you doing on this earth? What are we here for- this question disturbs me.
To make disciples of all nations- that’s what we are here for, as God’s children. These are the last words of the Lord Jesus.

The last words of some famous people- Winston Churchill said I’m bored with it all. Steve Jobs- Oh, wow! No one knows what it means. When Osama bin laden was targeted, his last words- don’t turn the last words. Saddam Hussein said, there is no God, there is no God. Jesus’ last words were not his dying words. They are the words of a resurrected one.

Matt 28:16-20-Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

This is the command- to go into all the world and make disciples of all nations. That is the emphasis.

Q. What does it mean to make disciples?

It means urging them to be followers, and become disciples of Jesus. You become an apprentice. You learn his teachings and his lifestyle. We must help them to grow.

3 ways Jesus wants us to make disciples:

·       By going- to all the nations. Means going to all kinds of people. Group of people with similar culture and outlook. In our nation there are thousands of people groups. Many times we understand that those who go out of the country are missionaries. But we are all called to be missionaries wherever we are- in our neighbourhoods, workplace, schools and colleges.  Stephen and Philip were caterers. But the Bible says that they were men full of wisdom. Stephen was the first martyr who died preaching the gospel. Philip was with a minister from Ethiopia who was reading Isaiah 58. Philip spoke to him as the Holy Spirit revealed the truth to him and shared the gospel. The minister was saved and that became the entry point for the gospel in Ethiopia. We are called to make disciples. We are caterers of the gospel.

How do we make disciples? The best example is to learn from the very person who gave us this command.

Q.     How did Jesus make disciples?

§  Jesus went where people were and invited them to follow them. Mark 2: 14- “As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.” Matt 4: 18As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”” Jesus went to them and called them.

§  Jesus not only invited them, but did it with a purpose. Come follow me, he said and I will make you fishers of men. Jesus had an encounter with Peter and the very presence of Jesus made peter realise how sinful he was. His very presence was changing people.

§  He allowed people to get into his life: In John 1:39, 2 of John’s disciples were following Jesus. They said, “Rabbi, where are staying? Jesus said, come and see.” Come into my life. He allowed people to get into his life. We make disciples by allowing them to see into our lives.

§  By being gentle and caring: 1 Thess 2:11-12- gentle and caring. That is how they made disciples. Like a father encouraging, comforting and urging. We need to take the step of launching out and caring, urging, encouraging... no flattery or deceit.

§  They presented a clear claim of Jesus. Jesus makes it very clear about what it means to follow him. Luke 9: 23 Jesus says- “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” There is a cost of discipleship. Making disciples is a command.

·       Baptising- It is the immersing in water, a declaration that we belong to Jesus. When peter gave his first sermon, 3000 people believed, were baptised and were added to the church. Identifying with God and God’s people is very important in making disciples.

·       Teaching them to obey all that was commanded. It is a very important part of making disciples. We are to teach the whole truth to people who want to follow Jesus. In Acts 2:42 we see that the early church met together, broke bread together, listened to the Apostle’s teaching. Disciple is a person who will obey.

If we believe in Jesus, our sole purpose is to make disciples. We do that by going into the lives of people and allowing them to come into our lives, presenting a clear gospel. Because all authority in heaven and earth was given to Jesus, we can go into the world and make disciples. All the nations belong to Jesus and we are called to go to the nations in his authority.


We are not alone. Jesus promises to be with us to the end of the age. When we are sent, the presence of God is with us- to be filled with power and to be witness. Let us trust God for making disciples.     

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.