City Harvest Church’s annual Arise and Build campaign kicks off.
On Oct. 11 and 12 marked the beginning of City Harvest Church’s annual building fund campaign, Arise & Build. It is an opportunity for members to build the House of God, exercising faith, love and gratitude for the vision that God has given to the leadership as well as the life-transforming encounters they have experienced in this place.
Kong Hee, senior pastor of CHC, resumed the second part of his sermon Abiding in Christ by recapping his previous two points based on Psalm 15, in that believers need to adjust their walk and their works. He then shared the third point—adjusting one’s words.
“We need to adjust our words”
“He who walks blamelessly and does what is right and speaks truth in his heart (Psalm 15:2)”, Kong said. The Word of God says that out of abundance that the mouth speaks. As such, the conversation believers engage in is very telling as it can be a hindrance to dwelling in God’s presence.
Kong also illustrated the power of Jesus in Mark 11: 22-23; when Jesus spoke to anyone, including demons, the wind and the waves, they obeyed Him. Many miracles and deliverances happened as a consequence of God’s Word. Indeed, there is great depth of spiritual energy stored up in the Holy Spirit and God wants His children to speak what He says.
However, words are powerful as they can cut both ways—positively and negatively. Evil communication corrupts. According to Psalm 141:3, the moment believers release words through their speech, things begin to move into motion. For example, the moment we confess with our mouth, we will be saved (Romans 10:9). We need to speak the truth from our heart and meditate on His Words (Psalm 15:2).
“We are the children of God … God calls us His sons, not sinners … God is not a liar … And God does not flatter!” Kong said.
“He simply tells us the truth. You are an overcomer, you are a king and a priest and we need to speak it out,” Kong emphasized.
Speaking the truth brings with it many benefits. Firstly, speaking the truth sets one free (John 8:32). Secondly, speaking the truth sanctifies (John 17:17). “You got to pray and sing and communicate the Words such that it permeates into our conscious and subconscious mind,” Kong proclaimed. God wants His believers to be a powerful vessel for His glory. Thirdly, speaking the truth strengthens the inner man, as believers quote and read the Word (Psalm 15:3-4).
“To abide in his tabernacle is not a fleeting relationship but to have a continual communication with Him,” Kong said.
In Malachi 3:16, Kong shared that God has a special book of remembrance (Malachi 3:16-17). For people who love and worship God, God will remember and specially write down on what one says. Kong thus encouraged the members to edify one another, building each other up.
“We need to adjust our will”
In his fourth point, Kong said that believers need to adjust their wills, referring to Psalm 15:4 (TLB). The human will is the controlling force of life; as such, believers need to submit their wills and desires under the will of God.
Sharing the parable from Matthew 21:28-31 about a father who asked his sons to work at the vineyard, where the first son rejected but later went, while the other son agreed but did not turn up eventually, Kong reminded the congregation that it was the one who eventually did his father’s bidding. From this story, Kong encouraged the congregation to activate their will to fulfill the promises they have made to God.
Some people may feel that obeying God will rob them of their lives; yet, Jesus lived a happy life despite the challenges He faced. John 15:11 says that “My joy may remain in you”.
“Obedience opens the door to revelation,” Kong shared. “The more you obey Him, the more He reveals his divine knowledge.”
“When our emotions are stirred, we want to serve Him. But when our emotions are still, we change our mind.” Kong reminded the congregation not to be fickle-minded but be one “who stands by his pledge at any cost,” (Psalm 15:4 in the Jerusalem bible). Quoting CHC’s senior advisory pastor AR Bernard on the three key traits of character, he said that what God wants of every man is to be decisive, consistent and strong in one’s commitment to God.
Next, Kong said that God has created humans in His image, spirit and we have a soul and we live in a body.
“Our body is God’s most glorious creation,” Kong told the congregation.
Kong elaborated on the functions of the body, soul and spirit and how it can impact on our will.
Firstly, the body gives manifestation to life as it is the temple of the Holy Spirit; a person’s will is the controlling force of his life.
Secondly, the soul gives movement to life. “We have a certain style, for example in the way we move and carry ourselves. However, the real you is in the spirit,” Kong said.
Thirdly, the spirit gives motivation to life. “When you are not a Christian you are susceptible to sin. When you are a Christian, you have full control of your will again.” Kong then asked the members if they would submit and surrender to Him.
“The motivation to surrender to God is love (2 Corinthians 5:14)”, Kong said. Quoting Alfred Lord Tennyson, who said “Our wills are ours, to make them Thine,” Kong said that that God wants to move His believers by His love; supernatural intervention takes place when one submits his or her will to God’s will.
Just like the Apostle Paul, who was imprisoned for his faith, Kong encouraged the members to do likewise, and to desire that “the will of God be done” (Acts 21:14) for he who does the will of God abides forever (1 John 2:17).
A tremendous atmosphere of faith and expectancy was present in the hall as the service drew to a close when Kong announced that this service was the beginning of the Arise and Build pledge campaign for the year 2014.
Sharon Yap, a finance professional in her late 30s, said, “I feel impacted by the need to adjust my will as this is the determining point of my success and victory in life. I will learn to keep my promises to God as I know this is solely determined by how strong-willed I am in God!”