Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Changing Lives | Colin D

This message was preached by Colin Dcruz at Word of Grace Church on  January 6th 2019. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

Last week, we heard the word about Word of Grace tagline – Enjoying God, Making friends and changing lives.
We also heard the word about Jesus’s return and how to live our lives on this earth in the meantime.

God’s Word began with TWO people (Adam and Eve) and ends with a multitude of people.
Rev 7:9 – After this, I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.

That is in the end of time.
From 2 people in the Garden of Eden, it’s going to be a multitude of people.

In 2019, how do I live?
Gen 1:28 - God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

When God created man, he commanded them to propagate and fill the earth. The same command is made in Matthew – Go and make disciples
From the beginning, God’s plan has always been the same.

Why do we need to proclaim?
Rev 20:11-13 - 11 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. The earth and the heavens fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead that was in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that was in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done.

In the end, every person will stand before God, books will be opened, and people will be judged. On earth, we can escape but not when we are in front of God on the Day of Judgment.

Rev 20:14-15 - 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. 15 Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.

This is what happens to the people who are dead by then. The seas and Hades will give up the dead that has been in them and each and every person will be judged according to what they had done.

We may get discouraged by the things happening in this world. Things like persecution are very scary. In the case of persecution, India is in 10th place in the world. We have a choice to make. We can either get disheartened and discouraged or encourage ourselves by looking at the Word.

In Dan 2:1-16, King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream and he wanted to know the interpretation of it as it troubles him. Hence, he summoned for all the magicians, enchanters, sorcerers and astrologers. He told them to find out what the dream is and then interpret it. When they replied to King saying there is none on this earth who can find out the dream without King telling them, the King issues an order to kill all the wise men. In this process, men were sent out to bring Daniel and his friends. Daniel pleads the King for time to find out the dream and also interpret it. The King agrees.

Dan 2:17-19 - 17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 18 He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven 

Find out the dream which only the King knew was impossible. Yet, Daniel PRAYED to God and God revealed to Daniel what the dream was and also revealed the interpretation.

In Dan 2:31-35, Daniel reveals the dream to the King. In the dream, a rock that is cut out not by human hands is thrown at the statue and the entire statue gets smashed and become like chaff on the threshing floor. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. But the rock that struck the statue became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth.

Dan 2:44-45 - 44 “In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever. 45 This is the meaning of the vision of the rock cut out of a mountain, but not by human hands—a rock that broke the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold to pieces.
When Daniel interpreted the dream to the King, the King trusted in that dream

Dan 2:46 - 46 Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell prostrate before Daniel and paid him honour and ordered that an offering and incense be presented to him.

The Kingdom that is set by God on this earth is the rock that is going to increase and fill this earth. All through God’s word, we have seen God’s Kingdom increase. In Acts, God added people to church. That’s an increase. The Kingdom of God will only increase.

In our own nation, 250 years ago, not many Christians were there. Even in China, God’s Kingdom is ever increasing.

In Matt 24, Jesus said that the end will come only after the gospel is preached to the whole world.

Still, 7000 people groups are not reached out yet. We need to reach out. Our lives are going to be glorious. But right now, we’re placed here on this earth, to extend God’s Kingdom.

Ask yourself – Am I proclaiming the gospel?
Jim Eliott was a young student, married in America. He and his 4 friends, wanted to meet one of these 7000 people groups. One of the groups was Auca tribe in India. They were dangerous. They kill anyone who enters their territory. This group of friends decided to reach out to this tribe. Initially, the 4 people made contact with them and they were killed. One of them who died had a pregnant wife. Later, she told her daughter that she’d show her daddy in heaven. Elizabeth Eliott and her daughter went to the same tribe and lived with them. Today, many people from that tribe are followers of Jesus Christ.

Picture yourself at the gates of heaven. Peter meets you and asks you if you know jump dancer. Then he tells you the story of the lame man who meets Peter and John on their way to the temple. The lame man asks for alms. But Peter says, “Silver and gold have I none but what I do have, I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” The lame man jumped to his feet. He went walking and jumping praising God. That man is the jump dancer!

What stories have we got to tell people in heaven?
1The 2:19-20 - 19 For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? 20 Indeed, you are our glory and joy.

Where are we heading now? Day after day, we’re so busy doing things like breakfast, routine, children, that we are missing the main mission of the Gospel.

Let’s start somewhere now.

I like watching movies. But I get very nervous when I don’t know if the hero survives in the end or not. I like to watch movies where I know how it ends.

We all know how the world is going to end. Jesus will come. He will come for the second time. That’s his return. People of every tribe and tongue will fall on their knees.

Let us be bold like Jim Eliott and Paul and ask God to use us. How do we do that?

  • What is your goal for 2019 in terms of making an Impact in your world/community?
  • What plan do I have to reach out to people this year? As a commitment, make a list of names and think and plan how you will engage them. Pray for them every day.
  • Do you have stories that people will talk about in heaven?
  • How would you describe yourself - engaged, eager, distracted, fearful, not interested as yet?
  • Do you know how to share your testimony in one minute? (Tell people what your life was before you met Christ. Then tell them how you met Him and what is the gospel. How did your life change? What is yoru future in eternity going to be. Give them an invitation to know the same)

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 has 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.  Word of Grace is a part of a wider international family of Churches called RegionsBeyond.To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 

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