총 게시물 462건, 최근 1 건

'Those who leave their marks on history'

글쓴이 : 관리자 날짜 : 2018-02-08 (목) 06:37 조회 : 222
설교일 : 2018.02.04
설교자 : Rev. Kwon
본문말씀 : Ezra 3:8-13

February 4, 2018

 

‘Those who leave their marks on history’

Ezra 3:8-13

 

Rev. Tae Hong Kwon’s Sermon at the KUMC of Metro Detroit

 

 

Hallelujah! In the name of Jesus Christ, may the great love, abundant grace and overflowing blessings of God be upon you, your home and your children on this holy and blessed Sunday!

 

Let us greet those sitting next to us with a broad smile, and please say these words to them, while gazing into their eyes, “Best wishes for a victorious February!”

 

Today’s passage is from the chapter 3 of Ezra and the title of this sermon is ‘Those who leave their marks on history’.

 

It seems like yesterday we were celebrating the New Year’s Day, but January has already passed by and this is the first Sunday of February.

 

I am wondering what kind of resolutions you have made at the start of this New Year.

 

According to a recent survey done with the staff of Samsung Electronics, the answer to the question of what they want to accomplish most anxiously this year was to go on a diet. But this is not the wish of Samsung Electronics staff only.

 

There was an online survey done by Home Shopping about the New Year’s resolutions and again the most popular resolution was to go on a diet.

 

Well, do you think it will be easy for those people to accomplish this resolution this year?

 

For your information, in case you are new to our church, I have lost 46 Kg, over 100 pounds, in the past, I am sort of an expert on dieting, and I know how difficult it is to go on a diet. Perhaps some of you are on a diet at present and I wish all of you well.

 

All of you have set goals for this year, and some goals are beginning to look good for you to accomplish and some goals are already beginning to collapse.

 

When we are faced with the collapse of our plans or goals, our favorite expression is, “It feels like the sky has fallen down upon me.”

 

I am sure that most of you have experienced some forms of extreme disappointments that made you feel like the sky had fallen upon you. There are several types of painful collapses in our lives.

 

First: The collapse of our expectations.

We go through the collapse of our expectations from time to time.

 

Our expectation about our children’s future:

Having cherished a certain expectation about the future of our children, we face big disappointments, in their pursuit of completely different paths, in their failures and mistakes, or in their lack of faith and distant relationship with God.

 

Our expectation about our business venture:

We invested enormous amount of money and time in our latest venture, but the result was   mediocre at best, then we experience a big disappointment and frustration.

 

Our expectation about people and about what they are going to do:

We have expectations about the people in our lives; about spouses, about employers and employees, and about pastors, parish leaders and cell group leaders in our church. When our expectations are crushed, we feel disappointed, frustrated and bewildered.

 

If someone expected to hear a short sermon from Rev. Kwon this morning, that person may be disappointed already, as we have not reached the thoughts on today’s passage yet.

 

Second: The collapse of our relationship.

We experience the collapse of our relationships once in a while, with our spouse at home, with our parents and children, with our colleagues in our workplace, or with the pastors, our parish leaders and cell group leaders, or with our fellow church members.  I hope your relationship with God has been healthy and intact this past week.

 

The collapse of our relationships bring us emotional conflicts.

 

Third: The collapse of our health.

Have you ever experienced the collapse of your health? With a sudden collapse of our good health, we really feel like the sky has fallen down on us.

 

Fourth: The collapse of our heart.

We go through the collapse of our expectations, of our relationships, of our health sometimes, but we also experience our hearts being broken by others; by their remarks, or by their indifference, or by their false accusations.

 

No one can get accustomed to the collapses in their lives.

 

The Israelites in today’s passage had experienced the compounding of all these collapses in their lives.

 

The Israelites were defeated by the Babylonian forces, so they experienced the collapse of their country. Then they were taken as captives to Babylon and they lost their families and their community.

 

Their life as slaves in the foreign land was utterly miserable. Even without getting sufficient food, they had to work so hard every day that their health was collapsing. Additionally, without their temple, their worship was collapsing and their relationship with God was crumbling also.

 

The Israelites felt that the 70 years of time spent as captives in Babylon was the time that had been lost and that they wanted to forget.

 

But we have to remember that the time that had been lost and should be forgotten in our eyes was not lost in God’s eyes, as the time had been spent according to the will of God

 

Proverbs 19:21  Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.

 

We may plan many things, but only those God approves will succeed.  

 

In today’s passage, the Israelites felt they were totally broken down, but God did not think so, as He had other plans for them. God never stopped caring for them, and He was waiting to bestow His grace upon them. God’s eyes were constantly on them during their 70 years of captivity, and now they returned to their homeland which had turned into a wasteland.

 

Ezra 3:1  When the seventh month came and the Israelites had settled in their towns, the people assembled as one man in Jerusalem.

 

The most important part of the above passage is ‘assembled as one man in Jerusalem’.

 

After meditating on the above, I had one question in my mind; “What were they looking at?”

 

What they looked at was the ruin of the temple of God, as God led them to the most painful place for them. No one wanted to go there, but they went there as one man, quietly and patiently.

 

My second question is, “What were they going to do at the most painful place in the world?”

 

Ezra 3:2  Then Jeshua son of Jozadak and his fellow priests and Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel and his associates began to build the altar of the God of Israel to sacrifice burnt offerings on it, in accordance with what is written in the Law of Moses the man of God.

 

At the site of their total disappointments and frustrations, Zerubbabel and his associates began to rebuild the altar of God, as one man, with one heart and one mind.

 

The altar of the Word,

The altar of Praises,

The altar of Prayers,

The altar of Worship, was rebuilt first.

 

Ezra 3:8  In the second month of the second year after their arrival at the house of God in Jerusalem, Zerubbabel son of Sheatiel, Jesua son of Jozadak, and the rest of their brothers (all who had returned from the captivity to Jerusalem) began the work, appointing the Levites twenty years of age and older to supervise the building of the house of the LORD.

 

All who had returned to Jerusalem from captivity began the work. They returned to their God and to the Word of God, and began the work of rebuilding the house of God. They worked quietly and patiently, but they left their marks in history. During the rebuilding, the people were singing praises and giving thanks to the LORD.

 

Ezra 3:11  With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the LORD: “He is good; His love to Israel endures forever.” And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.

 

They responded with praises to the LORD. All those people were thankful to God for His love for Israel and for allowing them to rebuild the temple. May the love of the LORD be upon the Korean United Methodist Church of Detroit and upon you, your home and your children! Amen!

 

The love of the Lord is more precious than life itself! I will praise Him with my lips throughout my life and raise my arm to praise His name!

 

Ezra 3:12  But many of the older priests and Levites and family heads, who had seen the former temple, wept aloud when they saw the foundation of this temple being laid, while many others shouted for joy.

 

These older priests had seen the temple as small children more than 70 years ago and remembered the grandeur of the temple, the glory and the presence of God there. Now after 70 years of sufferings and humiliations of the captivity, they saw the foundation of the new temple and were touched by it tremendously. They wept tears of thanks, while many others shouted for joy.

 

We notice two things here when the temple of God was being rebuilt, and they are tearful prayers and joyful praises.

 

Tearful Prayers & Joyful Praises

 

These are the ingredients needed to rebuild and restore the Altar of the Word, the Altar of Praises, the Altar of Prayers, and the Altar of Worship.

 

My beloved congregation, are you experiencing the collapses of expectations, relationships, health or broken heart in your life?

 

How are you going to rebuild them? Your worries and thoughts cannot do the work of rebuilding them. I believe only tearful prayers and joyful praises will rebuild and restore our homes, our children, broken relationships and our hearts.

 

I have a dream for the members of our church that they will confess their goals and hopes as follows.

 

“This year I really hope to have the tearful prayers restored in my life. And I hope to live with joyful praises, no matter what my circumstances are.”

 

This is the first Sunday after the resignation of our Senior Pastor Chan Young Jang, and we are one week away from next Sunday when Rev. Kyung Lim Shin will start her new post as our Interim Senior Pastor.

 

During this time of uncertainty at our church without the spiritual leadership, I am reminded of the Philippian church. How did the church and the members keep their steadfast faith, while Apostle Paul was imprisoned? We can find the answer in Paul’s letter to the Philippians, which has only 4 chapters, but 12 verses of Paul repeatedly asking them to rejoice and be joyful.

 

Philippians 2:18  So you should be glad and rejoice with me.

 

Philippians 3:1  Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord!

 

To the Philippians who were suffering from the lack of spiritual leadership, Apostle Paul only asked them to rejoice.

 

Philippians 4:4  Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!

 

Even when we have nothing to be happy about, we are happy because we remain in the Lord. We rejoice because we have a Bible, the Word of God, in our hands, we have our lips to praise God, and we have the place to worship where we can pray to the Lord as loud as we want.

 

I want to share some photos taken while our church was being built. Some of you may remember these scenes very well, and to many others, these are new and unfamiliar.

 

We know that the foundation of this church was laid by the people of God, and in this church, which is the body of Christ, the Words of God have been proclaimed, and the praises to God have been sung and our loud prayers to God have been said. Most importantly, this church has always experienced the love and glory, and the presence of God.

 

I believe that the blood of Jesus Christ on the cross is protecting the church and embracing all the members.

 

I believe that the grace and love of Jesus Christ are upon our homes and upon our children.

 

Even when we experience the collapses of our expectations, our relationships, our health and our hearts, we believe that Jesus Christ is enabling us to keep hold of our lives, our homes, our children and our church, by the power of His blood on the cross.

 

We rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance produces character, and character produces hope. And we have our hope in the eternal kingdom of heaven. By the power of the Holy Spirit, we live our lives trusting the love of God for us.

 

Romans 15:13  May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

 

May God fill all of you here with joy and peace and also fill our church with joy and peace! May your homes and your children be filled with joy and peace!

 

Just like those Israelites who had gathered in Jerusalem as one man, all we can do together is having tearful prayers and joyful praises.

 

Today God is looking for one person who prays, sings praises, and says prayers, at a place where no one else does, and He will bestow His love and His power on that person.

 

Even when we think there are crushing disappointments in all areas of our lives, our Father God will raise us up in our homes and in our workplaces, and especially in our church by the power of the Holy Spirit.

 

It takes only one person who rebuilds the Altar of the Word, the Altar of Praises, the Altar of Prayers, to raise up our church. I believe in the power of the footsteps of those who come to church early in the mornings to worship.

 

Tearful prayers and joyful praises of one person can raise up the community and leave a mark in history.

 

God has always worked with those who were anointed with the Holy Spirit by the power of the blood on the cross, and God is continuing His work, even today.

 

The Israelites returned to Jerusalem from their captivity in Babylon, and by laying the foundation of their new temple, they left their marks in history with their tearful prayers and joyful praises. And just like them, we hope to leave our marks in history. I pray in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ that all of you assembled here will leave your marks in God’s new history with your tearful prayers and joyful praises.

 

 

 

 

 

 


   

총 게시물 462건, 최근 1 건
번호 설교일              제목 본문말씀 설교자
462 2018.05.20  A MEANING OF PENTECOST Acts 2: 1-21 감리사님
461 2018.05.13  The Source of Miracles John 6:3-14 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
460 2018.05.13  기적의 근원 요한복음 6장 3~14절 신경림 목사
459 2018.05.06  The Most Precious Inheritance Proverbs 22:6 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
458 2018.05.06  가장 소중한 유산 잠언 22:6 신경림 목사
457 2018.04.29  The Acts of Apostles is still being written Acts 1:8 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
456 2018.04.29  사도행전은 지금도 쓰여지고 있습니다. 사도행전 1장 8절 신경림 목사
455 2018.04.22  Cain, Abel and Us Genesis 4:1-15 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
454 2018.04.22  가인과 아벨, 그리고 우리 창세기 4장 1~15절 신경림 목사
453 2018.04.15  Flowers that bloom, even as shaking in the wind Revelation 3:7-13 Rev. Kwon
452 2018.04.15  흔들리며 피는 꽃 요한계시록 3장 7~13절 권태홍 목사
451 2018.04.08  The Last Stand of David 1 Kings 1:1-4 Rev. Taegyu Shin
450 2018.04.08  다윗의 마지막 모습 열왕기상 1장 1~4절 신태규 목사
449 2018.04.01  "Come and have breakfast" John 21:1-14 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
448 2018.04.01  와서 아침을 먹어라 요한복음 21장 1~14절 신경림 목사
 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  다음  맨끝

제목 : A MEANING OF PENTECOST
설교일 : 2018.05.20
본문말씀 : Acts 2: 1-21
설교자 : 감리사님
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