총 게시물 511건, 최근 2 건

Plan G!!

글쓴이 : 관리자 날짜 : 2018-10-16 (화) 02:50 조회 : 79
설교일 : 2018.10.14
설교자 : Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
본문말씀 : Matthew 16:21-27

For the past 2 or 3 weeks, I have been thinking of my first sermon at this church; Let’s not go for a Plan B, as I didn’t bring any plan. Let’s pray together and go for the plan of God, ‘Plan G!’. At that time, all of us were anxious and fearful, as your beloved pastor had suffered such extreme pain for a long time and then he had to resign from his ministry in the end. And some members felt so bereaved and desolate as if they had lost their own father. Coming here as the Interim Senior Pastor of this large church at such a critical time, I was really worried and fearful and so were our Superintendent and our Bishop who had appointed me, I am sure.

 

When we are fearful, we begin to have too many worries, and to deal with them we think of many solutions, methods and strategies. I was worried that perhaps the congregation here might not like me or my sermons and then might not come to attend the services. After much deliberation, my first sermon here was about ‘Plan G’, which was going for God’s plan. Fortunately, all of you were very agreeable and compliant to the plan. When we didn’t insist on our own ideas and plans, God took over most of the responsibilities at this church. Soon I heard from the team leader of Parking that on Sundays there were just too many cars for our church parking lot, so some cars had to be turned away. I asked him to mobilize all the ways and means so that no car would be turned away on Sundays and I know that he has been very successful in accommodating all the cars that come into our church parking lot. At that time, when the person in charge of Hope College for Seniors resigned, some people thought we should just close down the school, but we didn’t and the school is continuing to do very well. English Ministry, Youth and Children Ministries are all flourishing and I hear the classrooms are full to the brim. I am very touched by the dedicated services of our church council members and thankful for our Cell Group leaders’ sacrifices and devotion. We are leaving a great legacy and I am just so grateful!

 

Lately, I am noticing that we, including myself, are beginning to rely on ‘Plan M’ – my plan. Now that our church has been running so smoothly, we may be tempted to give the credit to our plans instead of giving the full credit to God’s plan. We must be really careful now. According to the Christian history, when the believers were being persecuted, their beliefs and faith were steadfast and healthy, but when things were going well, they had the tendency to go astray. Therefore, we have to be careful, and on our guard to make sure that we are not going ahead of God with our own plans without seeking His will.

 

Let us go to today’s passage. When Jesus began to explain to His disciples that He must suffer many things and be killed and on the third day be raised to life, Peter began to ‘rebuke’ Him. Some Bible scholars find this behavior by Peter totally unacceptable, as he was a disciple of Jesus, the Rabbi. There were other disciples, and why did Peter had to do it? We think he had the utmost conviction that what Jesus said was wrong and he wanted to stop Jesus from going through it.

 

Now, Jesus turned and scolded Peter with the strongest word; He called Peter, Satan. What will happen if a Senior Pastor called a church member a Satan? I am sure there will be an uproar in the church. None of us will put up with being called a Satan, as we are all convinced of not being a Satan. Then, was it all right for Peter to be called Satan? I know Peter is far more superior than I am, and the Bible shows us the proof. Earlier in Matthew 16:13, when Jesus asked His disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” His was the most perfect theological answer. I could not have come up with such a perfect answer, if I were there. Jesus must have been satisfied with his answer and blessed him; “You are Peter, and on this rock, I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

 

What a tremendous praise and blessing for Peter! But, now he is being scolded and called the Satan. Jesus explained the reason; “You do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”In other words, anyone who do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men, is being scolded as Satan. Matthew in this Gospel wanted to point out as a warning to all of us that Peter who had been given the keys of the kingdom of heaven by Jesus made this big mistake and was scolded by Jesus. If Peter on whom the church is built can be a stumbling block to Jesus like Satan, we can certainly be the same. No matter how long the person has attended and served the church, no matter what position the person has, a pastor, an Elder, an Exhorter or a Deacon, if not careful, the person can become a stumbling block like Satan. This is terrifying and we feel very uncomfortable.

 

Then, what should we do? 

 

I have pondered over how we can have the things of God in our minds, not the things of men. The answer is by cherishing God in our hearts, we can accomplish that, as all of our thoughts, words and decisions come from our heart. When your heart is full of you, you will only have the things of men in mind. Therefore, when your heart is full of God, you can think of the things of God and make decisions based on what God wants and expects from you. When God is inside of us, we will think and act like Him, but when we are full of ourselves, we believe our ideas are right and our judgment is correct, and consequently we do not seek God or the will of God. Peter believed that it was wrong of Jesus when He said He must suffer and be killed and on the third day be raised to life, so he began to rebuke Jesus. If I were there, I might have reacted the same way. How could Peter accept that his Rabbi for whom he had given up his family, occupation and hometown would be persecuted and killed! Peter’s actions seem to be justified, especially because he as the chief disciple of Jesus was protesting on behalf of the others.

 

But Jesus scolded him and called him Satan. That is the reason why we should not rely on our own ideas and judgment only, as what we are convinced of doing the right thing can be the stumbling block of Satan. Therefore, instead of relying on our own strength, capability or our own common sense, we should cherish God in our heart.

 

And we should keep asking God for what to say, what to decide. When we reflect upon our own dialogue with God during our prayers to Him, we rarely ask for His opinion on things, but all the time we request God to give, to fix, to take care of things for us. We even ask God to discipline our child, a trouble maker. But, the right thing to do is to ask God, “What should I, the parent, do to bring my child around?” Likewise, we should ask God to tell us what to do to solve the problem at hand, instead of asking Him to take care of the problem. What we should request to God is to grant us the power to discern and fulfill His will.

 

After taking over the pastoral ministry here, I have been praying to God a lot, especially for His mercy. Without His help and grace, I would make bad decisions and wrong judgment and then I would stumble. Another thing I pray for is our church members be bestowed with abundant grace, as I have been feeling bad about not spending enough time to prepare the sermons. I know I should focus more on the true worship for God than the grace being bestowed upon our members, so I have been guilty of having the things of men in mind more than the things of God. The purpose of worship service is to worship God and to praise His holy name and offer ourselves to Him gratefully. We should make sure that our worship is pleasing to God.

 

By cherishing God in our hearts and at the center of our lives, and by focusing on Him, we can prevent us from doing the work of Satan. Then, we will have real joy in our hearts, say thanks every time we open our mouths and be strengthened by the true hope. We will see and treat others as fellow creatures of God who have been saved through the blood of Jesus, and if we do not, we have to make sure that we are cherishing God in our hearts. 

 

Let us remember that even Peter, the chief disciple of Jesus, made a momentary mistake and became a stumbling block to Jesus like Satan. Let us not be complacent for just attending the church services for so many years and for serving the church in important positions. Peter had been blessed by Jesus as ‘the rock’, but soon afterwards he was scolded by Jesus, “Get behind me, Satan!” We should not be ahead of Him, but stay behind Him and follow Him and do what He does. After scolding Peter, Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

 

Unconsciously, we may be only interested in receiving the grace of the Lord without taking up His cross, and we may be going ahead of Him with our own plans and asking Him to follow us. Instead of denying ourselves, we may be insisting on our own ideas and judgment while denying God, and instead of trying to please God, we may be trying to please people more. Instead of doing God’s work, we may be pushing our own agendas. Instead of seeking the invisible God, we may be pursuing the realities of the present world. Instead of listening for the fine voice of God, we may be paying more attention to the strong sounds of the world.

 

I want all of us to reflect upon ourselves and look deeply into our hearts. Get rid of your defense mechanism and take an honest look at your words and actions. We can pray about our thoughts, plans and hopes, but let us decide to go for ‘Plan G!!” May all of us have the things of God in mind and then fulfill the will of God!

 

Let us stand up and sing this hymn; “There is no one more precious than Jesus”


   

총 게시물 511건, 최근 2 건
번호 설교일              제목 본문말씀 설교자
511 2018.11.18  Where do you find your happiness? Matthew 13:44 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
510 2018.11.18  행복은 어디에 마태 복음 13:44 신경림 목사
509 2018.11.11  The Forgotten Identity John 1:14 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
508 2018.11.11  잊혀진 정체성 요한 복음 1:14 신경림 목사
507 2018.11.04  'After reaching the mature age of 40' 2 Kings 2:1-14 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
506 2018.11.04  마흔 즈음에 왕하 2:1-14 신경림 목사
505 2018.10.28  Reformation Sunday Matthew 11:29-30, Ephesians 2:8 Rev. Dr. McAllister-Wilson
504 10.21.2018  The testimonies of our lay people James 1:12 3 Lay people
503 10.21.2018  평신도주일 간증 야고보서 1:12 평신도 3인
502 2018.10.14  Plan G!! Matthew 16:21-27 Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
501 2018.10.14  Plan G!! 마태복음 16:21-27 신경림 목사
500 2018.10.07  'Must be born again to enter the kingdom of God' John 3:1-8 Rev. Se Jin Bae
499 2018.10.07  거듭남과 하나님 나라 요한 복음 3:1-8 배세진 목사
498 2018.09.30  'The Actively Working Faith' Luke 24:13-27 Rev. Sun Hyung Jo
497 2018.09.30  '작동하는 믿음' 누가 복음 24:13-27 조선형 목사
 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  다음  맨끝

제목 : Where do you find your happiness?
설교일 : 2018.11.18
본문말씀 : Matthew 13:44
설교자 : Rev. Kyung Lim Shin
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