Summary of the Sermon by Pastor Hanny Yasaputra, Bethany Brisbane International Church, at Bethany International Service, on Sunday, 7 January 2018.
A New Beginning 2018
In order to experience a new beginning, we need to change. Change affects many things in our life.
We may feel uncomfortable, but the result will be good if we persevere. We need to experience a change in our thinking.
Jonah 3:10 - When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened.
Jonah 4:1 - But to Jonah this seemed very wrong, and he became angry.
Jonah was disappointed and he prayed in verse 2. If we look at Jonah, it may reflect us all in some way. Jonah was a drama king. Jonah was longing to see calamity upon Nineveh. If we repent from old habits, we don’t need to wait for the beginning of the year to experience God. If we read the whole chapter, we can see that God prepared everything.
Our lives will never change if we do not change our way of thinking. The Bible says in Proverbs 23:7, “For as a man thinks within himself, so he is!”
In Jonah chapters 1 to 3, tells us what Jonah did towards the command of the Lord. The verse 4:11 ends the whole book of Jonah. It doesn’t say much. We may be interested to know what happens. Nineveh is situated in the modern-day Iraq. Truly it was a great city because God said it was a great city (Jonah 1:2, Jonah 3:1, Jonah 4:11).
For God, Nineveh was a great harvest of souls. For Jonah, he thought that Nineveh was an exceedingly wicked city. Jonah was a manipulative person – emotional unbalanced. Three times he had said: “It’s better for me to die than to live.” God uses weird people like you and me. If you are good in one thing, it does not mean that you are good in everything. Jonah was a good preacher and prophet, but was not good in caring for others.
Jonah was angry and we too can be angry at times. However the Bible tells us that in Proverbs 19:11, “A man’s discretion makes him slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook a transgression.” “Anger” is one letter short of “Danger”. We need to have victory over our emotions through Christ.
A Conversation with God.
Jonah has openness with God – he did not deny he was angry. Eventually he is in touch with himself – so many people blame others for their failures. Jonah’s perspective on God’s mercy and grace is right on! But … He COUNTED IN GOD’S MERCY that he thought he could escape from prejudice spirit: “Finally I did what you want me to do I know you see me…. I know you understand me but YOU WON’T PUNISH ME with this sin. I WILL GET AWAY from this. “That’s WHY I SIN!” We will suffer the consequence of sin and we need to repent.
A Servant of God
A servitude heart is TAKING YOUR GIVEN TASKS AS YOUR OWN PERSONAL ISSUE. TAKING SERIOUSLY AS YOUR KIN. The servant of God must ‘kin’ to the one whom he serves … if there is NO COMPASSION there won’t be an effective ministry but it will be raised up on SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS.
Numbers 12:3 - Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth. We should follow Moses’ attitude.
A Self-Made Shelter
Jonah sat under a shelter and was expecting to see what may happen to the city. People who ‘stuck’ – look at you as a show for them. Sometimes people look at us because they need an example for their ‘stuck’ lives. People who busy – don’t have time to watch the show
A self-made shelter: the STORY you tell yourself is often a shelter that shades you from the TRUTH what it takes to change you.
The victim of more power you have: FAIRNESS … you can become Unfair. Learn to treat others fairly when you are in power or leadership position that you may glorify God.
A Fish, A Plant, A Worm
God PREPARED a great fish, a plant and a worm for Jonah. Withering things happened to the believers – IT’S GOD! It’s the hand of God! We can TRUST GOD in the wilderness or in withering seasons… CAN GOD trust you when HE sends A WORM? Will we still praise God when something bad happens to you?
Jonah wanted to die three times – before, during and after the Nineveh repentance. There seemed “NO LIFE”. When the job is slow, when relationships turns sours, and when health is deteriorating. Give our life unto God’s Hands – eventually you will see God’s hands on everything in your life. If you feel like dying – stay strong. Have a heart of gratitude in every season of life. Expect God for UNUSUAL MIRACLES to happen to you.
Prospect for 2018
Change Mind, Change Heart – Change Life – becoming a NEW PERSON, BE KIND TO EVERYONE
Ask for God’s perspective on lost souls – the HARVEST IS READY! HEART OF COMPASSION is required!
Give our life unto God’s hands. If we are in sync with God, God will provide a new beginning for you.