Arise Pt. 4 - Do You Do Well...?

Preached by Rev. William Min


Jonah 4

1 But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was angry. And he prayed to the Lord and said, “O Lord, is not this what I said when I was yet in my country? That is why I made haste to flee to Tarshish; for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and relenting from disaster. Therefore now, O Lord, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live.” And the Lord said, “Do you do well to be angry?”

Jonah went out of the city and sat to the east of the city and made a booth for himself there. He sat under it in the shade, till he should see what would become of the city. Now the Lord God appointed a plant and made it come up over Jonah, that it might be a shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort. So Jonah was exceedingly glad because of the plant. But when dawn came up the next day, God appointed a worm that attacked the plant, so that it withered.When the sun rose, God appointed a scorching east wind, and the sun beat down on the head of Jonah so that he was faint. And he asked that he might die and said, “It is better for me to die than to live.” But God said to Jonah, “Do you do well to be angry for the plant?” And he said, “Yes, I do well to be angry, angry enough to die.” 10 And the Lord said, “You pity the plant, for which you did not labor, nor did you make it grow, which came into being in a night and perished in a night. 11 And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?”

Arise Pt. 3 - Going To Nineveh

Preached by Rev. William

JONAH 3 

1 Then the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying,
“Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it the message that I tell you.”
So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, three days' journey in breadth.
Jonah began to go into the city, going a day's journey. And he called out, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”
And the people of Nineveh believed God. They called for a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them.

The word reached the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.
And he issued a proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything. Let them not feed or drink water,
but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them call out mightily to God. Let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands.
Who knows? God may turn and relent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we may not perish.”

10 When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God relented of the disaster that he had said he would do to them, and he did not do it.

Arise Pt. 2 - In The Belly of the Deep

Preached by Rev. William Min


Jonah 2 
English Standard Version (ESV)

Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the belly of the fish, saying,

“I called out to the Lord, out of my distress,
    and he answered me;
out of the belly of Sheol I cried,
    and you heard my voice.
For you cast me into the deep,
    into the heart of the seas,
    and the flood surrounded me;
all your waves and your billows
    passed over me.
Then I said, ‘I am driven away
    from your sight;
yet I shall again look
    upon your holy temple.’
The waters closed in over me to take my life;
    the deep surrounded me;
weeds were wrapped about my head
    at the roots of the mountains.
I went down to the land
    whose bars closed upon me forever;
yet you brought up my life from the pit,
    O Lord my God.
When my life was fainting away,
    I remembered the Lord,
and my prayer came to you,
    into your holy temple.
Those who pay regard to vain idols
    forsake their hope of steadfast love.
But I with the voice of thanksgiving
    will sacrifice to you;
what I have vowed I will pay.
    Salvation belongs to the Lord!”

10 And the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah out upon the dry land.

Arise Pt. 1 - When We Run

Preached by Rev. William Min

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Jonah 1

Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it, for their evil has come up before me.” But Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish. So he paid the fare and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord.

But the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship threatened to break up. Then the mariners were afraid, and each cried out to his god. And they hurled the cargo that was in the ship into the sea to lighten it for them. But Jonah had gone down into the inner part of the ship and had lain down and was fast asleep. So the captain came and said to him, “What do you mean, you sleeper? Arise, call out to your god! Perhaps the god will give a thought to us, that we may not perish.”

And they said to one another, “Come, let us cast lots, that we may know on whose account this evil has come upon us.” So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah. Then they said to him, “Tell us on whose account this evil has come upon us. What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? And of what people are you?” And he said to them, “I am a Hebrew, and I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.”10 Then the men were exceedingly afraid and said to him, “What is this that you have done!” For the men knew that he was fleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them.

11 Then they said to him, “What shall we do to you, that the sea may quiet down for us?” For the sea grew more and more tempestuous. 12 He said to them, “Pick me up and hurl me into the sea; then the sea will quiet down for you, for I know it is because of me that this great tempest has come upon you.” 13 Nevertheless, the men rowed hard to get back to dry land, but they could not, for the sea grew more and more tempestuous against them. 14 Therefore they called out to the Lord, “O Lord, let us not perish for this man's life, and lay not on us innocent blood, for you, O Lord, have done as it pleased you.” 15 So they picked up Jonah and hurled him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging. 16 Then the men feared the Lord exceedingly, and they offered a sacrifice to the Lord and made vows.

17 And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.

Never Once Left Alone

Preached by Rev. William Min
June 9, 2019

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Acts 2:1-13

1 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language.And they were amazed and astonished, saying, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, 11 both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” 12 And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13 But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.”

John 14: 15-18; 25-31

15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, 17 even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.

18 “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 

25 “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. 28 You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. 29 And now I have told you before it takes place, so that when it does take place you may believe. 30 I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me, 31 but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here.

The Clear Sign of Supernatural Unity

Preached by Rev. William Min
06/02/2019

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Philippians 1:27-30

27 Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. 29 For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, 30 engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.


John 17:14-23

14 I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15 I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19 And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.

20 “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.

Through Faith, For Good Works

Preached by Rev. William Min
05/26/2019

Ephesians 2:1-10 

1 And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

***

James 1:19-27

19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.

22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.

26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless. 27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.

To Love As God Says To Love

Preached by Rev. William


Acts 11:1-18

1 Now the apostles and the brothers who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcision party criticized him, saying, “You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them.” But Peter began and explained it to them in order: “I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision, something like a great sheet descending, being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to me. Looking at it closely, I observed animals and beasts of prey and reptiles and birds of the air. And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ But I said, ‘By no means, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ But the voice answered a second time from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, do not call common.’ 10 This happened three times, and all was drawn up again into heaven. 11 And behold, at that very moment three men arrived at the house in which we were, sent to me from Caesarea. 12 And the Spirit told me to go with them, making no distinction. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man's house. 13 And he told us how he had seen the angel stand in his house and say, ‘Send to Joppa and bring Simon who is called Peter; 14 he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.’ 15 As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. 16 And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 If then God gave the same gift to them as he gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God's way?” 18 When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, “Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.”


John 13:31-35

31 When he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him. 32 If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself, and glorify him at once. 33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. You will seek me, and just as I said to the Jews, so now I also say to you, ‘Where I am going you cannot come.’ 34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”


A Woman Who Fears The Lord (Mother's Day)

Preached by Rev. William Min

Proverbs 31:10-31

10 A capable wife who can find?
    She is far more precious than jewels.
11 The heart of her husband trusts in her,
    and he will have no lack of gain.
12 She does him good, and not harm,
    all the days of her life.
13 She seeks wool and flax,
    and works with willing hands.
14 She is like the ships of the merchant,
    she brings her food from far away.
15 She rises while it is still night
    and provides food for her household
    and tasks for her servant-girls.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
    with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17 She girds herself with strength,
    and makes her arms strong.
18 She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
    Her lamp does not go out at night.
19 She puts her hands to the distaff,
    and her hands hold the spindle.
20 She opens her hand to the poor,
    and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid for her household when it snows,
    for all her household are clothed in crimson.
22 She makes herself coverings;
    her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the city gates,
    taking his seat among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them;
    she supplies the merchant with sashes.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
    and she laughs at the time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
    and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27 She looks well to the ways of her household,
    and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her happy;
    her husband too, and he praises her:
29 “Many women have done excellently,
    but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Give her a share in the fruit of her hands,
    and let her works praise her in the city gates.

For His Name's Sake (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On May 5th, 2019

Psalm 31

In you, O Lord, I seek refuge; do not let me ever be put to shame; in your righteousness deliver me.
2 Incline your ear to me; rescue me speedily. Be a rock of refuge for me, a strong fortress to save me.
You are indeed my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake lead me and guide me,


The Lord's Prayer (pt. 7): For Yours Is... (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On February 17th, 2019

1 Chronicles 29:10 - 20

10 Then David blessed the Lord in the presence of all the assembly; David said: “Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of our ancestor Israel, forever and ever. 11 Yours, O Lord, are the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and on the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. 12 Riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might; and it is in your hand to make great and to give strength to all. 13 And now, our God, we give thanks to you and praise your glorious name.

14 “But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to make this freewill offering? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you. 15 For we are aliens and transients before you, as were all our ancestors; our days on the earth are like a shadow, and there is no hope. 16 O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a house for your holy name comes from your hand and is all your own. 17 I know, my God, that you search the heart, and take pleasure in uprightness; in the uprightness of my heart I have freely offered all these things, and now I have seen your people, who are present here, offering freely and joyously to you. 18 O Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our ancestors, keep forever such purposes and thoughts in the hearts of your people, and direct their hearts toward you. 19 Grant to my son Solomon that with single mind he may keep your commandments, your decrees, and your statutes, performing all of them, and that he may build the temple for which I have made provision.”

20 Then David said to the whole assembly, “Bless the Lord your God.” And all the assembly blessed the Lord, the God of their ancestors, and bowed their heads and prostrated themselves before the Lord and the king.

Matthew 6:9-13 

9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
12 and forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from evil.

The Lord's Prayer (pt. 6): Deliver Us (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On February 10th, 2019

Psalm 37: 23-29

23 Our steps are made firm by the Lord,
    when he delights in our way;
24 though we stumble, we shall not fall headlong,
    for the Lord holds us by the hand.
25 I have been young, and now am old,
    yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken
    or their children begging bread.
26 They are ever giving liberally and lending,
    and their children become a blessing.
27 Depart from evil, and do good;
    so you shall abide forever.
28 For the Lord loves justice;
    he will not forsake his faithful ones.
The righteous shall be kept safe forever,
    but the children of the wicked shall be cut off.
29 The righteous shall inherit the land,
    and live in it forever.

James 1:12-18

12 Blessed is anyone who endures temptation. Such a one has stood the test and will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. 13 No one, when tempted, should say, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil and he himself tempts no one. 14 But one is tempted by one’s own desire, being lured and enticed by it; 15 then, when that desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and that sin, when it is fully grown, gives birth to death. 16 Do not be deceived, my beloved.

17 Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. 18 In fulfillment of his own purpose he gave us birth by the word of truth, so that we would become a kind of first fruits of his creatures.


The Lord's Prayer (pt. 5): Forgive Us (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On February 3rd, 2019

Matthew 18:21-35

21 Then Peter came and said to him, “Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “Not seven times, but, I tell you, seventy-seven times.

23 “For this reason the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his slaves. 24 When he began the reckoning, one who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him; 25 and, as he could not pay, his lord ordered him to be sold, together with his wife and children and all his possessions, and payment to be made. 26 So the slave fell on his knees before him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ 27 And out of pity for him, the lord of that slave released him and forgave him the debt. 28 But that same slave, as he went out, came upon one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii; and seizing him by the throat, he said, ‘Pay what you owe.’ 29 Then his fellow slave fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ 30 But he refused; then he went and threw him into prison until he would pay the debt. 31 When his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their lord all that had taken place. 32 Then his lord summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked slave! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33 Should you not have had mercy on your fellow slave, as I had mercy on you?’ 34 And in anger his lord handed him over to be tortured until he would pay his entire debt. 35 So my heavenly Father will also do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”

Matthew 6:9-13

9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
12 and forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13
And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from evil.

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The Lord's Prayer (pt. 4): Our Daily Bread (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On January 27th, 2019

Genesis 50:15-21

15 Realizing that their father was dead, Joseph’s brothers said, “What if Joseph still bears a grudge against us and pays us back in full for all the wrong that we did to him?” 16 So they approached Joseph, saying, “Your father gave this instruction before he died, 17 ‘Say to Joseph: I beg you, forgive the crime of your brothers and the wrong they did in harming you.’ Now therefore please forgive the crime of the servants of the God of your father.” Joseph wept when they spoke to him. 18 Then his brothers also wept, fell down before him, and said, “We are here as your slaves.” 19 But Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid! Am I in the place of God? 20 Even though you intended to do harm to me, God intended it for good, in order to preserve a numerous people, as he is doing today. 21 So have no fear; I myself will provide for you and your little ones.” In this way he reassured them, speaking kindly to them.


Matthew 6: 9-13

9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
12 
and forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from evil.

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The Lord's Prayer (pt. 3): Thy Will Be Done (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On January 29th, 2019

Genesis 28:10-19

10 Jacob left Beer-sheba and went toward Haran. 11 He came to a certain place and stayed there for the night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place. 12 And he dreamed that there was a ladder set up on the earth, the top of it reaching to heaven; and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 And the Lord stood beside him and said, “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and to your offspring; 14 and your offspring shall be like the dust of the earth, and you shall spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south; and all the families of the earth shall be blessed in you and in your offspring. 15 Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” 16 Then Jacob woke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place—and I did not know it!” 17 And he was afraid, and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”

18 So Jacob rose early in the morning, and he took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it. 19 He called that place Bethel; but the name of the city was Luz at the first.


Matthew 6:9-13

“Pray then in this way:
Our Father in heaven,
    hallowed be your name.
10     Your kingdom come.
    Your will be done,
        on earth as it is in heaven.
11     Give us this day our daily bread.
12     And forgive us our debts,
        as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13   And do not bring us to the time of trial,
        but rescue us from the evil one.


It is said that one person dies of hunger every 10 seconds.  This is about 8500 people who die every single day.  Many of us have lived through wars and seen acts of senseless violence.  Even in the last couple of years there seems to have been one terrible event after another.  When we look closer to home we see sickness and conflict.  Broken families and the passing of people for no apparent reason at all.  All of this makes no sense and we conclude that life is not fair.  In the midst of these kinds of suffering, who has not asked God “Where has You been?”  Which of us have not asked God;  Why do you allow certain things to happen?

However there is alway a time for us to be reminded that as the children of God, we are to be strong. and bold. When we have no answers to some of life’s most difficult questions, we just learn to boldly and faithfully look at what Scripture tells us about life here on earth.  We do this so that we can be reminded of how God has been faithful in the lives of those in scripture and those who have gone before us. We must remember the ways in which God has also been faithful to us in our lives. 

We must be reminded of these things: because in the face of dire circumstance, we will often forget.  We may be wrongfully putting the blame on God. 

“Why have you forsaken me?”

Scripture reveals to us that God’s will for this world has never been pain, violence or suffering.  It has been; from the very beginning, love and peace.  We know this to be true because we see it in God’s will for Jesus and His ministry.  We see how God was more than willing to give up His beloved Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the Cross to bear the shame of all humanity so that He could put an end to suffering.  We could be reconciled to Him as His children, as it was meant to be. Christ hung on that Cross and gave up His last breath to put an end to violence. To put an end to oppression, to injustice and to suffering. 

He died on the Cross to ultimately bring us peace. 

THIS is God’s will. 

Humanity has many times perverted God’s will for its own bigoted and selfish needs. God’s will was (and is!) for the salvation of us all.  God has been doing this work since the beginning of time.  We are the witnesses to this. 

To pray “thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” is an expanding of the heart behind “thy kingdom come”.  To pray for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven calls us to do more than just be the hands and feet of Christ in building His kingdom.  In fact it calls us to do more than bring healing and reconciliation, to feed the hungry, clothe the needy or to care for the orphans and widows.  To pray “Thy will be done” calls us to have faith.  It calls us to have the faith, and the eyes of faith, to see how God has been and continue to work in the world today. 

In other words, it pushes us beyond simply being good people doing good deeds.  It calls us to shed our cynicism and hopelessness. It asks of us to surrender our exasperations, frustrations and pessimisms. 

It calls us to remember and to believe, that this very same God:

Who brought the Israelites out of Egypt to the Promised land

Who has time and time again restored, saved and redeemed His people.  

Who had been proven in scripture to be faithful to His promises 

Is the very same God we worship today

In Genesis 28 we see the story of Jacob fleeing from all that he knows and holds dear.  Although he is carrying with him this amazing blessing from his father, he also carries the shame, guilt and fear of having cheated his elder brother Esau out of both his birthright and his father’s blessing. His life has been plagued with shameful acts which result in him fleeing for his life.  His circumstances were less then great… they were terrible!  Here we find him alone laying his head down on a stone which was the only thing that could give him comfort.  

But God shows him a dream in which the angels of the Lord are marching up and down on a staircase from heaven to earth. And he hears the voice of God say:

“I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and to your offspring; and your offspring shall be like the dust of the earth, and you shall spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south; and all the families of the earth shall be blessed in you and in your offspring. Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” (Gen 28. vv13-15)

This is an amazing thing because God is re-iterating a promise a covenant He made to his grandfather Abraham.  God tells Jacob that it is HE who will become Israel.  It is by him that God would make His people. 

Now to Jacob, this made no sense.  He was a cheater and a liar who stole from his brother and tricked his father.  He was a carrier of a blessing that he received on dishonest terms.  How could it be that God would uphold His promise through Him?

Yet God takes this Jacob just as he is; shameful, terrified. And set him up to become the father of God’s people. 

Jacob wakes and exclaims: ““Surely the Lord is in this place—and I did not know it!”

Jacob’s epiphany here is that God and His angels were at work and were present not only in Bethel where he set the stone as a pillar, but always and everywhere!  In other words, God was showing Jacob (and is showing us) that even when we are absolutely oblivious to what God is doing… Even when our circumstances absolutely suck… That God and all the heavenly hosts are doing His work!  Though there are many times when we may sit in silence and frustration because God seems to be absent… God and His angels are at work, even now!

We are in many ways more like Jacob than we would think.  We who believe carry the blessing and presence of the Spirit of God within us and yet we often live life like we are running for our lives.  We live like our lives are out of control.  We live like we are alone.  When God is reminding us “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; … Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go…for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”

What an incredible reminder! That God’s will for us is that we know that He is with us, and that He will keep us, and never leave us, until He has made good on His promise to us!

When we pray “thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” we are being called not only to know what God’s will is for the earth, but also to bear witness to it!  It is a call for us to have faith in His promise to us and to live like it!

Not only are we to be the hands and feet of God in the building of His kingdom, but we are also to be a people who’s faith proclaims the gospel truth of Jesus Christ in every facet of our lives.  We are praying that the entirety of our lives, in all we do and say and are, proclaim that God, Christ and the Holy Spirit are here AND at work, even today! It is a call and vocation that calls us to have the hope and faith in a God who was, and is, and is to come!

If we are the witnesses to this truth… Then just as Jacob set up a pillar to show this to the world, so ought we to set up pillars in our lives in how we live to proclaim to the world that we know, without a shadow of a doubt, that God is good. Yesterday. Today. And forever. 

Amen. 



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The Lord's Prayer (pt. 1) : "Our Father..."

Preached by Rev. William Min

Isaiah 40: 12-17 & 21-26

12 Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand
    and marked off the heavens with a span,
enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure,
    and weighed the mountains in scales
    and the hills in a balance?
13 Who has directed the spirit of the Lord,
    or as his counselor has instructed him?
14 Whom did he consult for his enlightenment,
    and who taught him the path of justice?
Who taught him knowledge,
    and showed him the way of understanding?
15 Even the nations are like a drop from a bucket,
    and are accounted as dust on the scales;
    see, he takes up the isles like fine dust.
16 Lebanon would not provide fuel enough,
    nor are its animals enough for a burnt offering.
17 All the nations are as nothing before him;
    they are accounted by him as less than nothing and emptiness.

21 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
    Has it not been told you from the beginning?
    Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?
22 It is he who sits above the circle of the earth,
    and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers;
who stretches out the heavens like a curtain,
    and spreads them like a tent to live in;
23 who brings princes to naught,
    and makes the rulers of the earth as nothing.
24 Scarcely are they planted, scarcely sown,
    scarcely has their stem taken root in the earth,
when he blows upon them, and they wither,
    and the tempest carries them off like stubble.
25 To whom then will you compare me,
    or who is my equal? says the Holy One.
26 Lift up your eyes on high and see:
    Who created these?
He who brings out their host and numbers them,
    calling them all by name;
because he is great in strength,
    mighty in power,
    not one is missing.

•  •  •

Matthew 6:5-13

“And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

“When you are praying, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

“Pray then in this way:
Our Father in heaven,
    hallowed be your name.
10     Your kingdom come.
    Your will be done,
        on earth as it is in heaven.

11     Give us this day our daily bread.
12     And forgive us our debts,
        as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13     And do not bring us to the time of trial,
        but rescue us from the evil one.

*Some manuscripts add “For the kingdom and the power and the glory are yours forever. Amen.”


The beginning of a New Year always brings about a hope for a kind of fresh start.  Yet we often struggle with things like New Years Resolution because they do not always stick!  Even though I have never been able to follow through on any of my resolutions, I still wanted to begin this year meaningfully.  Last year my wife Tori and I had read through the Bible (I think my wife read through it twice in fact!). I wanted to do this again and have committed to reading 5 chapters of the Bible a day (this way you would finish the Bible in roughly 6 months.)  On top of that I felt that I was being invited to fast from social media (which can be quite challenging for a millennial!) and spend more time in devotion and in prayer. I would invite you to think about how you could start this year meaningfully as well… It is never too late!

One of my hopes for this year is that we rethink about what it is to pray, how it is we pray, and why it is we pray. 

In the passage from Matthew, Jesus warns us to take care of how we pray.  Instead of simply doing it out of some form of religious obligation, or as a way to prove to others (and even ourselves) how “holy” we truly are… Jesus invites us to take prayer seriously.  He says “…whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (v.6)  I believe what He’s trying to say is that we ought to value prayer as much as we value our deepest passions, for what we care about most we do in secret. (Perhaps you can remember the last time you wrote a love letter in secret?)

Jesus then says “When you are praying, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” (vv.7-8)  This is a challenging one for me because I know exactly what I should be saying when I pray but often pray words that I do not really think about!  Jesus wants us to take care with the words we choose when praying to Him.  Rather than praying the same prayer everyday (though they are not said in vain!) Jesus’ invitation to us is to be more intentional and present when we pray. 

One of the greatest gifts that Christ gave us is what we know as the “Lord’s Prayer”.  It is something that Christians have recited a billion times week after week, but not often really thinking about what it is saying.  The power and significance of the Lord’s Prayer is that essentially covers all the bases for what it is we ought to (and need to) be praying about. 

Simon Weil, in his book “Waiting For God” says that the Lord’s Prayer can be broken down into six petitions as follows: 

1. Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be they name

2. Thy kingdom come

3. Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven

4. Give us this day our daily bread

5. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us

6. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil 


Over the next 7 weeks we will be looking at each of these petitions… with the seventh week looking at the line “For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever and ever.”

The first line “Our Father, who art in heaven” is significant because it reminds us that all things, even our prayers, begin with God.  This prayer begins with adoration and worship.  It is what sets the tone for our prayers, our faith, and for all of life and creation.  It is the embodiment of the first of Jesus’ greatest commandments: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy should and with all thy mind and with all thy strength” (Mark 12:30).  

Prayer is powerful not only because it is how we speak with the living God, but because it allows works to open up our hearts and live to what God is doing.  Prayer, as much as it is “lifted up” to God plays a significant role on the ground: in our lives.  When we pray the words “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be thy name” we are doing MORE than simply stating the obvious.  We are being REMINDED of this truth. 

These words are calling us to think upon the character of God and what He has done.  It is an invitation to contemplate on the Lord of all creation who resides in heaven and who’s name is Holy.  In other words, as we pray and as we live… PAY ATTENTION to God.  Just as you would pay attention to every detail and hang on to every word on someone you adored… so we are to ponder and think and look at God.

Prayer is meant to shift our focus from the trials and distractions and busyness of this world so that we can not only turn but be intentionally, thoughtfully and wholly engaged with God.  To look upon him and be present and attentive.  To bask in who He is.  To adore Him. In other words… Prayer begins not with you.  It begins with Him

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams says this…

Understand what you’re talking about when you’re talking about God, this is serious, this is the most wonderful and frightening reality that we could imagine, more wonderful and frightening than we can imagine.

Jesus understood this.  As we pay attention to how the Lord’s Prayer begins, we are reminded that in so little words that we ought to take seriously who we are speaking with. 

To utter the words “hallowed be your name” is to remind ourselves and to those around us that indeed God is Holy, Holy, Holy.  That the Lord is far beyond. He is the beginning of all things.  We get a glimpse of the greatness of God in the passage from Isaiah that begins with “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and marked off the heavens with a span, enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance?” (v. 12)  Who indeed?

Pay attention to who you’re talking to! Take prayer seriously!

Prayer begins with God.  This is the right attitude and mindset we ought to bring every time we pray the Lord’s Prayer, and every other prayer we say.  Get it straight in your heart, mind, soul and spirit!  You have the ability, freedom and great honour to be able to talk to the God.  That’s a pretty big deal

Though we continue to have confidence that God hears and answers all of our prayers according to His will and time… Though we are reminded that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us with groans too deep for words and that we are never left to our own devices… Though we know that the grace of God is sufficient to cover us in all our needs, whether we pray for them or not…  Jesus says to His disciples “Pray then in this way…” for a reason. 

As you pray through this year, may you continue to grow in your knowledge of God’s amazing grace, in the peace of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit… That you would allow your prayers to not only be worshipfully given to God but give you eyes to see, engage and participate in all that God is doing in you and those around you.  And that your prayers would continue to open and shape your heart and get them in sync with God’s. 


I know that this year I have to pray more… 

As we pray together, may we begin with our loving, heavenly and holy Father. 


Amen.

On Your Lips, In Your Hearts (Audio Only)

Preached by Rev. William Min
On November 18th, 2018

Deuteronomy 26:1-11

1 When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess, and you possess it, and settle in it, you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name. You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time, and say to him, “Today I declare to the Lord your God that I have come into the land that the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.” When the priest takes the basket from your hand and sets it down before the altar of the Lord your God, you shall make this response before the Lord your God: “A wandering Aramean was my ancestor; he went down into Egypt and lived there as an alien, few in number, and there he became a great nation, mighty and populous. When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labor on us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 So now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground that you, O Lord, have given me.” You shall set it down before the Lord your God and bow down before the Lord your God. 11 Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.

Responsive Reading: Psalm 91:1-2 ,9-16

You who live in the shelter of the Most High,
    who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress;
    my God, in whom I trust.”


Because you have made the Lord your refuge,
    the Most High your dwelling place,
10 no evil shall befall you,
    no scourge come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways.
12 On their hands they will bear you up,
    so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the adder,
    the young lion and the serpent you will trample under foot.
14 Those who love me, I will deliver;
    I will protect those who know my name.
15 When they call to me, I will answer them;
    I will be with them in trouble,
    I will rescue them and honor them.
16 With long life I will satisfy them,
    and show them my salvation.

Romans 10:5-13

Moses writes concerning the righteousness that comes from the law, that “the person who does these things will live by them.” But the righteousness that comes from faith says, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) “or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say?

“The word is near you,
 on your lips and in your heart”

(that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For one believes with the heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. 11 The scripture says, “No one who believes in him will be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and is generous to all who call on him. 13 For, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”