Sunday Service | Mt. Zion Church | 19 March 2017
MP3 file: 20170319MP_PowerToReviveOthers.mp3
Thousands of years ago, God gave an ultimate Law for His people. That Law taught peoples to know God’s will and instruct them to do the excellent thing more than all people in this world Ro.2:18. That Law is holy, just, and good Ro.7:12. However that Law was not able to bring anyone come into perfection, the Law made nothing perfect He.7:19.
Jesus came to this world not to destroy the Law which Israel people already had for a long time. Jesus came to fulfil the Law and also gave us power to fulfil it even power to do more than the Law. In Matthew chapter 5 Jesus mentioned 5 times that His followers were supposed to do more than what the Scribes and Pharisees did, otherwise we can not enter the kingdom of heaven.
17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfil. 18 For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. 19 Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:17-20 NKJV
NEW TESTAMENT AND NEW POWER
Jesus never said that the Law at the Old Testament was inferior compared to His teaching. Jesus taught all peoples that the Law was good and no one should break the Law. The Law was talking about God’s love that we need to have and share to others Gal.5:14, Lev.19:18.
For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” Galatians 5:14 NKJV
But when it came to the new dimension of New Testament, Jesus led all of His followers to the higher level, not only just obeying the Law without any passion but Jesus gave us power so we not only doing His will but also loving Him with all of our heart and our might. Jesus did not break the Old Testament but He lifted up the Old one to the New one. There was anyone at the Old Testament could do this but the Son of God only could accomplish this mission so only in His name people can be saved Ac.4:12.
God Himself never be changed He.13:8. But the method how God interact with His people is different between Old Testament and New Testament. During Old Testament, we can see that God did not require His people as much as at the New Testament. Just for example, the Law allowed us to do any harm to other people that already harm us first Lev.24:19-20. But the New Testament teach us to forgive and let him go without doing any vengeance because it is God authority to do vengeance Ro.12:19. In the New Testament Jesus lead us and shape us to be a better and stronger person since He also provide the new power for us to do more!
1: POWER TO REVIVE OTHERS
21 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire. 23 Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. 25 Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the way with him, lest your adversary deliver you to the judge, the judge hand you over to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. 26 Assuredly, I say to you, you will by no means get out of there till you have paid the last penny. Matthew 5:21-26 NKJV
The Law only had concern when the murder already happened physically, people were told not to kill anyone. But Jesus told His people more than that. Jesus is giving us more power when He instruct a new thing. Jesus wanted to lift us higher so we are aware with what is happening in our heart first before it come into any action! Jesus warned us not to angry to anyone without a cause. In another place the Bible told us that the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God Jam.1:20. No one will be killed physically with our anger but God does not only see the outer but He looks at the heart 1Sa.16:7. The attitude of anger is actually the precedent for the murder.
Jesus also warned all people who like to reproach others. ‘Raca’ is Aramaic which transliterated into Greek. It means empty, a term of reproach used among the Jews in the time of Christ. The expression of people blaming others could be different at each country times by times, but no matter what people may say to blame God never agree with it! The sin of telling vain words and blaspheming is equal with the sin of murder. People who easily hate anyone and start to produce evil words from their mouth actually already become a murderer in the sight of God 1Jn.3:15.
Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 1John 3:15 NKJV
We always talk a lot of words everyday. From thousands of words spoken each day we need to aware not to killing anyone. Sometimes parents may kill their children with words and vice versa. Husband may kill wife with words and vice versa. Tongue can be like a sharp razor that doing a lot of deceit and destruction Ps.52:2. A heart filled with anger can bring out a lot of destructive words Mt.12:34. We always have a dynamic condition in each new day, even from hour to hour the situation may change dramatically and our mood could be affected as well. Apostle James wrote that if anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole-body Jam.3:2.
No matter how worst the condition we may have, Jesus teach us not to speak any evil words. Whenever hate start to reign in heart so the sin already overcome that people Gn.4:7. Jesus gave us heavenly power so we can always guard our heart from any devil’s trick. Moreover, Jesus gave us abundant peace so we can always deal others with heavenly manner. This truth is quite difficult to be accepted and applied for people in common. However, as a new creation in Christ 2Co.5:17 we are equipped with the new power and new character so we can always have a gracious speech just like Jesus Lk.4:22, seasoned with salt Co.4:6 so others can be edified and encouraged Eph.4:29.
Jesus gave us power so we can always reply others with good talk. No matter how sarcastic the words we may receive, the power from God could enable us to give a response with meekness just like what Moses did when Miriam and Aaron – people who very close with him – start to accuse him regarding the Ethiopian woman whom he had married Nu.12:1-3. Jesus gave us power not to repay evil with evil, Jesus teach us to overcome evil with good Ro.12:17,21. Anger may arouse within us whenever other people start to give unreasonable pressure for us, whenever we are being shamed, whenever we are blamed by others, but even in the worst circumstances Jesus teach us to always react with heavenly manner. Jesus was struck by the priest’s officer for saying truth, even though in that condition Jesus replied them with good words Jn.18:22-23. Jesus taught us to have a self-control and only the Holy Spirit can produce that fruit in our life Gl.5:23.
God give us power to do more! God give us power to reply others with God’s love. God give us power to rule our spirit and control our emotion. God give us power to revive others with our tongue. God give us power to bless and edify others with our speech. God give us power to be His messenger so we can deliver the message of salvation, message of encouragement, message of strength. From now on, let’s dedicate our mouth to speak God’s love. No matter how bad the condition we may have in each new day, just simply let God’s mercy fill our heart every morning Lam.3:23 so we know what to speak, how to pull out God’s grace through our words so we may bless others. AMEN.
19 In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is wise. 20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; The heart of the wicked is worth little. 21 The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of wisdom. Proverbs 10:19-21 NKJV