Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Compassion for the Lost and Networking by Dr.Tiong Tung Hui dated 24.1.16

Compassion for the lost and networking with other churches in demonstrating compassion is in our Church’s Mission Statement.
What is compassion?
Compassion is a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.
Splangchnon; plural splangchna
Originally referred to body parts specifically to the viscera of sacrificial animals – heart, liver, lungs and kidney (“guts” or “bowels”)
The followings are the verses used by Dr. Tiong for his sermon:
Matthew 9:35-38, Matthew 22:37-39, Matthew 14:14, Matthew 15:32, Mark 1:40-41, John 11:35
Several of these verses contain the word “compassion” and some about how Jesus showed compassion for the needy.
God’s compassion is the heart of salvation. Jesus is the expression of God’s compassion for us.  It is not about pity for us.
Jesus has the heart for two groups of people 
a) The lost
b) outcast, sick or poor.
Even though in many Bible stories we could see Jesus was very busy and yet he had compassion for these two groups of people.
How do we love God?  By loving others.
     1.       For the lost – we must share Christ whenever we have the opportunity.  In this modern time, we got to earn the rights to share Jesus Christ with the lost.  Our actions should tally with our sharing.  Do not say one thing and do the opposite.
     2.       Heal the sick – Jesus had compassion for the sick and He healed them.
     3.       The harvest is plentiful and labours are few, more so we must share Christ with those who do not know Him.
Being a Christian we cannot be uncompassionate.  He share about the work of Mother Teresa, and Amy Carmichael, how these missionaries sacrificed their lives for others.  Also in Borneo how SIB was started by the Australians who had compassion for those in Borneo who did not know Christ.  We must response to reach the unreached.  We are His hands and voices.  We are His channel and He wants to work through us.  God wants us t participate in His work.
As a Church how do we show compassion to the lost?
E.g. we have Salvation Amy works, Breakthrough, Hope Place, Tuition of English, Family Ministry and others.  There are so many avenue for us to participate.  It is not necessary to introduce new activity and organizations to do these work.
Dr. Tiong shared about his experience of serving in a hospice where a family have 4 retarded children who also suffered from kidney problems.  Last year one child died while his parents hold his hands.  Another is very sick now.  When Dr. Tiong asked them how they face such hardship and pain, they said it was God’s grace and mercy.  Dr. Tiong said he could not help but to show support and to hold their hands in the time of trouble.
In another story, he was helping a rural woman with her cataract eyes, the operation did not go well and yet the woman told Dr. Tiong that she could see.  Dr. Tiong knew she could not see.  On another occasion Dr. Tiong asked her why she said she could see when she could not ?  She said Dr.Tiong  and others had already showed her so much compassion and help and she could not say she was unable to see.
Net Working
God wants us to work with others and other churches.  Since, the “Allah” issue we can see how our Sarawak Churches of various denominations had united together for the same cause.  We have seen many churches under Kuching Minister Fellowship working together in many projects.
There are many organizations we can join, Salvation Amy, Alpha, FES, Boys Brigade, Girls Brigade, Breakthrough, Hope place etc.
Micah 6:8
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly[a] with your God.”

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Focused on Jesus by Song Ting Kee dated 3.1.16

Focused on Jesus is one of the ethos of FBC.  This sermon is based on Daniel 3:13-30.  It was about the story of King Nebuchadnezzar instructing the three Jewish men Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego to worship the golden idol he made, but they refused.  So he threw them into a furnace, but to his surprise they were not hurt.  He came to acknowledge the God of the Jews.

What made the three men so firm?

It was their identity with God.  It was the key to give them the confidence of His help in time of troubles.

Daniel 1:6-7

The men from Judah, their names changed by the Babylonians.  Daniel became Belteshazzar, Haaniah became Shadrach, Mishael became Meshach and Azariah to Abednego.

Meaning of their names

Daniel                               Belteshazzar
 God’s judge                     Nebuchadnezzar’s God
God’s judgement
God is my judge

Hananiah                        Shadrach
Yahweh is gracious        Command of Moon god (Shudur Aku)

Mishael                            Meshach 
Who is what God is        Who is what “Aku” is

Azariah                              Abednego
Whom Yahweh helps      Servant of “Nego”

Their names in the Jewish language were meaningful and they were related to God.  They knew God very well.  They had identity with God.  Whereas the Babylonian names were nothing related to the true God but related to idols and their gods.

The young Jewish men knew God and they will not bow down to any idol.  The Babylonians tried to shape their thinking and their identities, but they did not succeed in changing them into the Babylonian’ ways.  The young men were so sure that they told the king even if they did not survive being thrown into the furnace that was alright because God may have other plans.

Who am I in Christ?  What am I in Christ?

We often take the Communion, and we realized how much God loves us.  He died for us.  We do experience storms in our lives, but we know God is there for us.  Let us hang on to Jesus.  We in Christ are more than conquerors.  Conquerors of darkness, and inequalities to show love, grace, and sympathy to those who need them.  Christ in us help and shape us.

Bro. Song shared a story of a troubled teacher trainee who seems to give troubles to the lecturer.  Later Bro. Song and his wife found that her mother died while she sat for her Form five exam and later their father abandoned them.  She has to look after her brothers.  During school holidays, Bro Song and his wife found her a temporary work at a day care.  This shows the heart of God.

Focus on what?

Focus on love, sharing the Good News, helping the needy, pray for the people touch them.
Bro. Song shared a story of a former prisoner who was totally changed after he came to Christ.  After his release he went back to his kampong and kneed in front of all the villagers to ask for forgiveness.  They forgave him.  He asked the villagers to give him building materials to re build his house and they did.  This Christmas Bro. Song, Bro. Ben and Pastor George celebrated Christmas with him in his kampong.  This showed the heart of love.

In another story of a teacher who was about to retire.  He did not know what to do as his identity was his work as a teacher.  As he approached his retirement he began to forget usual things like locking his house.  One day he forgot to lock his house and his computer was stolen.

Focus on Christ alone, identify with Christ.

Reflect God.  We live for Christ and not for ourselves.

Galatian 6: 9-10
9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.