Summary of the Sermon by Pastor Abraham Lalamentik, at Bethany International Service, on Sunday, 17 February 2019.
The Kingdom of God
If we can invent a time machine that can bring Jesus and His disciples to this place at this time, they will build an organization. The organization will have its own stationery and tag line [one liner].
BCS’s one liner is Raise Up, Reach Out, Impact
Nike – Just Do It
Adidas – Impossible is Nothing
Jesus’s organization tag line will be – The Kingdom of God is among you.
People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. (Hebrews 11:14-16)
Abraham was rich and lived in the city of Ur in the land of the Chaldeans – a prosperous and modern city. However, he felt empty. He longed to live in a city founded and built by God Himself. He was willing to lay behind all that he had. He longed to experience something that he had never experienced before.
CS Lewis shared his experience of Heaven. Every time he look at his toy garden, it created in him a feeling of plushness, a longing for another world. Fish live in water but it cannot explain what wetness means. It is the way of life for the fish.
Lot looked around and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan toward Zoar was well watered, like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt. (This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah). So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company: (Genesis 13:10-11)
Abraham took Lot, but Lot couldn’t see the city that his uncle, Abraham saw. Lot saw what was physical, immediate, and sensual that were right before his eyes. Abraham could see the invincible.
The Word of God says unless you are born again you can see the kingdom of God.
Matthew 13:31-33 – Jesus put forth another parable -
Jesus explained to them about the Kingdom of God using two of the smallest objects that we can see with our naked eyes – the mustard seed and yeast. In the Kingdom of God, everything starts small (almost invisible) but will grow into something great, powerful and mighty, that can impact the surrounding.
There are four things we need to know if the Kingdom of God is with us.
1. We begin to become aware of the presence of God in our lives, guiding us. Genesis 17:1 - walk before Me and be blameless. This is a continuation of Genesis 12, where Abraham felt he had to leave his city. God called Abraham to go to an unknown place. I will bless the people who bless you and curse the people who curse you. With courage, Abraham left everything behind and started to follow the calling of God. In Genesis 15 and Genesis 17, God asked Abraham to walk with Him.
2. It’s the atmosphere of the Kingdom of God around us. Romans 14:17 - For the Kingdom of God is not about eating or drinking, but righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Embassies represent their home country. The place we step into becomes the Kingdom of God, as our lives have God in us. Any plane that carries the President of USA is called Airforce One. So if we are the ambassadors of God, we bring God’s presence wherever we go.
3. We begin to bear the fruits of the Kingdom in our lives. Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. (Matthew 21:43) Therefore let our conduct, how we carry ourselves, be transformed because of the culture of the Kingdom of God.
4. We begin to display the power of the Kingdom. It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age (Hebrews 6:4-5) If I cast out demons with the finger of God, surely the Kingdom of God has come upon you. (Luke 11:20)
Abraham saw the glorious and gleaming city whose builder is God (Hebrews 11:10), there is no hospital in that city as there will be no sickness there. As we live in the power of the Kingdom of God, that power of the Kingdom will back us up in all our dealings. Start from the awareness that God is with us, guiding us. When we have the Kingdom of God in our hearts, we have the peace, love and joy. It will transform the way we talk, act, and how we see. When this happens, Singapore will be transformed. Start by being born again to be able to see the Kingdom of God.
Pray that God opens up our hearts and eyes to be able to see the city, like Abraham did.