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Embrace the Call by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

Embrace the Call by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

In the Book of Judges, we have learned the Israelites’ Cycle of Sin, which made God raise Judges to be their leaders. Today, we are about to open the story of the 4th Judge named Deborah. She’s a woman whom God called to be Israelites’ Judge. It is unusual for a woman to be a leader but Deborah trusted and embraced God’s call.

The story began when Israelites fell into sin and idolatry again. So the Lord gave them in the hands of King Jabin of Canaan who enslaved the Israelites for 20 years. Desperate and struggling, Israelites cried to the Lord for help. (Judges 4:1-3) King Jabin has a commander of his army named Sisera, he has nine hundred chariots fitted with iron, enough to defeat anyone by that time.

Now, Deborah, a prophet and wife of Lappidoth was leading Israel. They came up to her to have their disputes be decided. So she called Barak, son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali and said to him, “The LORD, the God of Israel, commands you: ‘Go, take with you ten thousand men of Naphtali and Zebulun and lead them up to Mount Tabor. 7 I will lead Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River and give him into your hands.’”

Upon knowing this, Barak became hesitant and told Deborah that he will only go if Deborah will go with him. Deborah then said, “Certainly I will go with you, but because of the course you are taking, the honor will not be yours, for the LORD will deliver Sisera into the hands of a woman.”

So Deborah and Barak went to with 10,000 men who went up in their command. The battle went on and Sisera, summoned his 900 chariots fitted with iron but the Lord has already given them by the hands of Barak. Sisera was forced to flee by his foot, which made him gone up to the tent of Jael, wife of Heber from the descendants of Hobab, Moses’ brother-in-law.

Jael went out to meet Sisera and gave him a glass of milk then let Sisera fall into sleep. When Sisera was asleep, Jael took a tent peg and hammer and drove it straight to Sisera’s temple and he died.

Just then Barak came by in pursuit of Sisera, and Jael went out to meet him. “Come,” she said, “I will show you the man you’re looking for.” So he went in with her, and there lay Sisera with the tent peg through his temple—dead. (Judges 4:22)

Sisera did fall into the hands of a woman just what Deborah told Barak. The lesson here is sometimes God is calling us to do something but we refuse to answer and obey. We are sometimes ruled over by our own fears and doubt. This very resistance to our callings makes us undeserving of every blessing that we could have got. To help you out, here are some points to embrace our own callings.

1. Step up in Faith – We don’t become a Christian just to look and observe what’s happening around us. As Christians, we should be the first ones who initiate that in the Name of Jesus anything could happen—that miracles exist in His Name. As Christians we are called to step up in our faith in Him, in His Name and in our faith we could be His medium to show His miracles.

2. Step out of the Normal and Usual – Romans 12:2(a) “2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” Don’t be bothered if there are people laughing at your faith or mocking you when you praise, for these people are not against us but is against Jesus. We are called to step out of the norms of the world and make the Kingdom of God reign anywhere we are. Never stop doing what is pleasing to God.

3. Step Into His Will and Power – Believe and have faith in Him! And when you step in, be sure to (1) Hang on! Don’t lose hope on God even if you see no changes despite all your efforts to do what He has been telling you. (2) Dive in! Drench yourself in His power because if you’re still hesitant to soak in His power you’ll never experience His fullness. (3) Be empowered! Encourage yourself to step in and plug into God! Make Him your source of empowerment. Know that we are nothing when we’re apart from Him.

Sunday Evangelism by Pastor Peter Aguila

Sunday Evangelism by Pastor Peter Aguila

As Christians— faithful believers of God, we must welcome the year with a hopeful heart that this year given to us will overflow with God’s grace.

 

Luke 4:15-19 15 He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.

16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
19     to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”[

 

Sometimes, our problem is we doubt what God has planned for us. We doubt His presence surrounding us, and we doubt His power that He can do miracles through us if we only put our faith and trust in Him.

In His presence we must soak our selves and we can guarantee to be showered with His blessings as well as we can bless other people. Seek His righteousness, and declare that you, as loving son and daughter of God, will minister to those whom God told us just what Jesus did in Nazareth.

This year, as we remain in His presence, He will give us the favor that we deserve. Our genuine relationship with Him will result into grace upon grace and blessings upon blessings.

Sambang Gabi Day 3 – Children Massacred by Bro. Daniel Cosico

Sambang Gabi Day 3 – Children Massacred by Bro. Daniel Cosico

As we talk more about the prophecies of Jesus from Old Testament to new testament, and how we can relate it to our daily lives we will learn that Jesus is the way and real messiah. And as we accept that Jesus is the savior sent for us, our Christmas will be more valuable than how we see and celebrate it.

In the book of Jeremiah, the Lord said, “A voice is heard in Ramah mourning and great weeping, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.” (Jeremiah 31:15) And in Matthew 2:16-18 it was fulfilled, 16 When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi. 17 Then what was said through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled: 18 “A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted because they are no more.”

No one’s exempted with problems; Israelites were in exile, and yet there is a prophecy that there will be killings of innocent. Imagine the great distress that Israelites are feeling.

In our modern generation, how do we normally cope up with our problems? There are three actions we tend to do whenever we struggle in life. (1) Escape—our initial reaction to every problem is to escape and “save” our selves; and escaping comes in different shape, it can be excessive drinking, vices, and worst—suicide. There is no man that is problem-free, even Daniel once said that if he had the wings of a dove, he would fly away and be at rest! (2) Ignore—we tend to deal with our problems a little later or not at all! We entertain our selves with nonsense delays just to forget or ignore our problems—it’s either we hang out with our friends, socialize or go out somewhere. But in the end, when no one’s around, there’s still our problem. (3) React—one of our most common responses to our problems is to react! To use emotions—we burst into anger, cry out loud, or throw tantrums at the world. To escape, ignore and react wrongly to our problems is what we normally do but what we ideally need to do in times of struggle is to (4) BE STILL. In every problem, be still and (1) think what God wants you to learn in your situation. (2) What God has given you—what options that God laid down for you? (3) What does God want you to do? If you are not still, you will only get tired of thinking about your problem.

Luke 22:44 “And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.”

Just like you, and everyone else around us, Jesus also faced great distress. If you thought that He doesn’t know what you’re going through, believe that He knows because He had experienced worse. The difference is Jesus, in His most trying times; He became still and prayed more earnestly. And that is how He wants us to react in each trial we face. We turn to Him, pray intently and earnestly before anything else.

Psalm 46:10 [a] “He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;”

Real Christmas isn’t about the holiday rush and the pressure of gift giving—it is Jesus being separated from God so we could go home to Him; it is being comforted amidst our trials and problems because we have Jesus.

Sambang Gabi Day 2 – Sojourn in Egypt by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Sambang Gabi Day 2 – Sojourn in Egypt by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Hosea 11:1, “When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son.”

Israel was brought out of Egypt, of their “comfort” zone, so they could come to the Promised Land and fulfill God’s will for them. Jesus was brought out of his simple life to fulfill his Father’s plan to save mankind. All of us will soon be brought out of our own self-built safe zones if God says so. It is not to put a burden on us or persecute us but so we can fulfill His plan for us and experience His blessings.

Here are some pointers on how to leave your comfort zone so you can fulfill God’s will for you:

1.) Connect with God – First thing is to stop giving excuses. Maybe the reason why you cannot experience God’s fullness is that you don’t make an effort to connect with Him. Give time for prayer, open your Bible and read the Word.

2.) Don’t confuse stepping out with recklessness – There will be instances wherein we will think that our risky actions are instructions from God. But never confuse your reckless actions with God’s instructions because not all of your “stepping-out” is what really God wants you to do.

3.) Don’t be afraid to do things differently – Since we settled with our safe zones, we never tried to look at a different perspective. We dealt with everything in the same manner but God’s way is better than our way. To get out of your comfort zone, don’t hesitate to be up for a change.

4.) Don’t let fear and responsibilities stop you – Lead, disciple, evangelize if you must. God is always with you to back you up so don’t let your fear intervene. Don’t be afraid to responsibilities that may occur because in those situations you will experience God’s provision and guidance towards His plan for you.

Sambang Gabi Day 1 - Emmanuel by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

Sambang Gabi Day 1 - Emmanuel by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

This advent season, excitement should fill our hearts—not for the gifts or the Christmas rush but for the coming again of Jesus.

Some of us may have grown tired of waiting, some may feel the Lord is unreachable, and some may feel that they don’t need the Lord in their lives. But the truth is God is always with us. He is always the one who calls us, trying to reach us but sometimes we are resistant to His presence. We are so important to Him that even if we drift away from Him he will always reach for us.

God is right here right now, and we can experience His presence by asking for it, focusing, and considering Him on our daily and hourly life. If we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us, which is why through worshipping, reading His Word and in our prayers, we can experience His presence.

God is never silent, He is never a snob, He is personally interested in each of us and wants us to feel His presence because, in His presence, we see miracles, blessings, and breakthroughs. If we only let Him move upon us, we can experience these. We may not know how but if we obey and let Him in our lives, He will be the one to show us His great miracles.

The Book of Judges by Pastor John Mateos Ong

The Book of Judges by Pastor John Mateos Ong

In the book of Judges, Israelites have forsaken the Lord again. They have served Baal and the Ashtoreths and followed and worshipped various gods of people. And because of this, the Lord gave the Israelites into the hands of the enemies, whenever Israel went out to fight the hand of the Lord was against them.

We are all aware that the Lord is helping us, but sometimes we forgot everything He did for us when we are in a great situation—worst, we tend to turn our backs on Him. There are also times when we are again in distress we blame everything to Him or that’s when we only come back again to seek Him.

Israel was in great suffering; then the Lord raised up Judges who saved them in the hands of the enemies. Israel called for the Lord, and the Lord made Othniel the first judge. He defeated the King of Mesopotamia and there was peace in Israel for 40 years.

Israel seeks the Lord again, and He helped them. If we see it, the story had a happy ending, but why is there 12 judges if the first judge brought Israel peace and back to the Lord. This is because Israel had sinned again. This is a cycle that people cannot seem to get out from. When we’re in success, we forget the Lord and when we suffer, we return to Him but then again we will commit a sin again until it repeats itself.

The power of the Lord came upon us when we give 100%. But sometimes we only give 50% of our trust in Him yet we expect to experience His 100%. Let’s reflect on this and ask ourselves, do we already give our hundred percent for the Lord r do we still have rooms inside us that are still locked for Him to enter? Are we bargaining our sins with the Lord? Are we still not ready to surrender every evil act we hide?

Application:

Lamentations 3:22-23 “Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

God’s love for us is unending, it never stops, it never ceases. No matter how much you sin as long as you call on Him, He will embrace you in His arms. His great love for us is not a license for us to commit sin all the time but this is a license that whenever we commit sin but decided to return to Him, we are welcome.

Return, Repent, Receive by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Return, Repent, Receive by Pastor John Mateos Ong

All of us want blessings. But the question is, what kind of blessing do we want?

There are two kinds of blessing—the temporal blessing and eternal blessing, or in easier words, worldly and heavenly. Worldly blessings can be money, family, work, fame, and even health while heavenly is God’s favor for us. It may be hard to choose over the two blessings but the truth is we are easily drawn out to choose the worldly blessing because it is more tangible and deceiving for us humans.

In Matthew 6:19-24

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.  “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy,[c] your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

Sadly, in our current era, only a few people are choosing God over money. There may be some who truly follow Jesus but there are also people who say they commit to following Jesus but turns out they serve and follow with the spirit of idolatry. Worse, they become fanatic of a religion that they miss out on God.

Let’s reflect on this verse: Jeremiah 2:5 What Injustice did your fathers find in me that they went far from me and walked after emptiness and became empty.

God is telling us that He wants to bless us with His eternal blessing—we just need to return to Him.

Jeremiah 4:1-2

“If you, Israel, will return, then return to me,” declares the Lord.

“If you put your detestable idols out of my sight and no longer go astray, and if in a truthful, just and righteous way you swear, ‘As surely as the Lord lives,’ then the nations will invoke blessings by him and in him, they will boast.” 

The same way God asked the Israelites before, He is asking us today, do we want the real blessing? If your answer is yes, then obey to return to Him.

 

Here are the three points in receiving God’s real blessing: 

  1. Return – There is nothing worse than having a hard time deciding if you will return to Jesus. He is saying, my door is open for you; if you want to return, then return to me.

  2. Repent – Stop playing games with Him and take your relationship with Him seriously. Because if you truly believe that Jesus is God you will drop everything that hinders you in making Him #1 in your life.

  3. Receive – You may have an ideal blessing that you want, but know that this blessing might not the one you want but be confident that it is the only blessing you will need in your life. Accept it with arms wide open and you will see the blessing you never imagined receiving.

 

True Worship: Jesus Reigns by Pastor John Mateos Ong

True Worship: Jesus Reigns by Pastor John Mateos Ong

A Christian missionary once said, “When the heart submits, then Jesus reigns. When Jesus reigns, there is rest.”

How can you tell that Jesus really reigns in your heart? We know that we are all a work in progress when it comes to total submission, but what makes us true worshipper is when we strive hard to submit to the Lord completely, not 95% but a total 100%.

Jesus Reigns isn’t just another event; it is a current state of us Christians that there are people out there, surrounding us, worshipping gods but their hearts are not for Jesus. This celebration is here to unite everyone in the body of Christ, and reach the unbelievers and declare that there is hope in Jesus.

Why must Jesus reign? Here are the 5 Core Values of Jesus Reigns that will help us understood why we must let Jesus reign in our hearts and our lives:

1. Prayer – 2 Chronicles 7 tells us, no matter how bad you were before if you will humble yourself, pray and repent on your sins, God will listen from heaven and forgive you. God loves it when you call upon Him; it shows our dependence on Him for our life. It shows that we value our relationship with Him despite our state, we pray not because we need something, we pray because we want to talk to Him.

2. Anonymity – Anonymity means it is only Jesus that we need to lift. His name, be the only name to be known and us be the anonymous people lifting Jesus’ name so He will be praised, glorified and enthroned in His rightful place. John 3:30, “He must become greater, I must become less”, this is because glory is not for us, it is all for Jesus.

3. Unity – Psalm 133:1, “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” As God’s people, we celebrate our differences by uniting in the body of Christ. We unite because we are the End Time army, in the coming of Jesus. We unite for the full release of God’s authority and for His presence to overcome the world.

4. Sacrificial Giving – 2 Samuel 24:24, “…I will not sacrifice to the LORD my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” Bless are those who give not out of their own convenience but who give because they want it to be an act of worship and for the advancement of the kingdom of the Lord.

5. Excellence – All believers, we are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood to the One True King, and a Holy nation. We are not just some people that believe in God, but we are the ones who will declare the praises Him. Since we are a chosen generation we are expected to do everything with our best for the Lord.

Joshua and the Gibeonites: Building Hedges by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Joshua and the Gibeonites: Building Hedges by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Israelites took down the land of Jerico and Ai, and the news reached the kingdom of Gibeon. Knowing that the land of Ai is a great empire yet it was taken down by the Israelites, Gibeonites tried to make a treaty with Joshua. But the truth is they only deceive them only not to be attacked. Israelites sworn before God which what happened, they did not kill the Gibeonites but they made them woodcutters and water carriers which they are up until today. Then the day came where 5 kings came after the Gibeonites for their trained men and wealth. And because Israel made a treaty with the Gibeonites they protected them and before the Israel Joshua said, “Sun, stand still over Gibeon and you, moon, over the Valley of Aijalon.” 13 So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on[b] its enemies,” Lord gave the Amorites to Israel’s hands before it ever began. It is true that no matter what happens, the will of God overpowers everything. If He can stop the sun for the Gibeonites what more can He do for us His children.

In the story of Joshua and the Gibeonites, it tells us that we still commit sin even we know that we depend on God. But why do we still commit sin knowing it is not what God wants? Why do we still stumble on our journey towards Holiness? This is because we do not build hedges and the story of Joshua and the Gibeonites is the best example why sometimes the enemy fools us. Hedges that will serve as our barrier and protector from the enemy that wants to penetrate us.

Here are 4 points that we can do to build ourselves strong hedges against the enemy.

1. Make God your first option not last – Joshua’s mistake is he depended on his own might and did not ask God first about the Gibeonites. That is a common scenario for us that we only remember to seek God when times are rough and difficult for us to deal with. Keep in mind that when making decisions always involve God and you will never be in enemy’s hands. In Proverbs 3:6 it says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.“

2. Always wear the full armor of God - Ephesians 6:11 tells us, “11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” The enemy is always up to deceiving us; it is on a stakeout to devour you into its evil works. So it is crucial for us Christians to be geared up with the full armor of God and always be ready to combat the forces of the enemy.

3. Get Accountability Partner – It is biblically true that two is better than one, for when one falls the other can lift him up. It is said in Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, “9 Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor: 10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.” It is a lot easier to resist sin when there is someone reminding you to avoid it. Someone who truly care for your spiritual growth and won’t let you fall for the works of the enemy.

4. Put Allowances – 1 Corinthians 10:12 “12 So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” We may say that we are truly Christians and we don’t fall for sins immediately but it is important that we put allowances, and in that allowance is our hedge against the devil's schemes. We cannot lean on our own because no matter how strong and firm we are about ourselves we will need God as our protector and source of strength to finish strong.

Stumbling Blocks by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Stumbling Blocks by Pastor John Mateos Ong

The story begins with Achan, the son of Karmi, the son of Zimri, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, who took some of the things that God forbids them to take from Jericho because it was all meant to be destroyed. So the Lord’s wrath came upon the Israelites.

Near the Beth Aven to the east of Bethel, Joshua sent men to Ai and told them, “Go up and spy out the region”. When the men returned they said to Joshua that only two to three thousand soldiers are needed to take down the land of Ai. So, three thousand men were sent to Ai, but they were easily routed by the men of Ai and about 36 Israelites were killed.

Joshua called upon God, fell facedown before the ark of the Lord and asked why did He let them pass the Jordan if He will only let them get destroyed by the Amorites. God answered Joshua, “Stand up! What are you doing down on your face?11 Israel has sinned; they have violated my covenant, which I commanded them to keep. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have lied, they have put them with their own possessions. 12 That is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies; they turn their backs and run because they have been made liable to destruction. I will not be with you anymore unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction” (Joshua 7:10-12)

God told Joshua to consecrate the people and surrender what they took. He told them that Israel couldn’t stand against their enemies until they remove them. So Joshua called Israel by tribes and Judah was chosen. In Judah’s tribe, Achan was chosen, and right there he confessed what he has done. Joshua told him, “Why have you brought this trouble on us? The LORD will bring trouble on you today.” And on that day, he was brought to the valley of Achor where he was stoned to death and burned with all his possessions.

In life, we thought it would be a smooth walk in the park where everything will go according to what you had planned. But there will always be an Achan or stumbling block that will trip and make us stumble. A stumbling block can be something, someone or even you yourself who forbids you to progress, an obstacle that forbids your plan to succeed. If ever you discover that you are someone’s stumbling block try to change and never be anyone else’s obstacle again. Here are three points you can do so you can prevent being a stumbling block:

1. Don’t Give Excuses – Stop making excuses because sometimes these excuses are the stumbling blocks in your life. Just like in the parable of the great banquet, where Jesus invited people to come to His home but each of them has their own excuses. Despite Jesus’ offer of a great banquet they chose to refuse for some petty reasons, their wealth, their work, and their own personal lives.

2. Watch Your Actions – Sometimes the littlest actions that you thought isn’t doing any harm can be your stumbling block. And some of it is littering in public places, loading, and unloading in no loading and unloading areas, smoke belching, and even the wearing/doing what is trending. These things may not matter to you but it has consequences that can make you stumble.

3. Double Check Your Beliefs – As Christians, we spread the gospel of love of God. But sometimes, we became so passionate about our belief to the point that when we meet someone that does not share the same belief that we have, we easily judge him or her. This unintentional act can be our downfall, so it is important for us to double check our belief.

The Great Faith in God by Pastor Peter Aguila

The Great Faith in God by Pastor Peter Aguila

A new Christian is expected to elevate his relationship with the Lord in time through his personal bible because faith comes from hearing and knowing constantly the word of God. But there are some Christian that lack the knowledge about the bible, which hinders him/her to level up from being just a Christian to a faithful one.

In Matthew 8:5-13, it tells the story of a centurion with whom Jesus said is a man with great faith. When the centurion said, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed.” Jesus was amazed how great is the man’s faith to Him knowing he is a high-ranking centurion but with Jesus and His word, he knows he is under the authority.

If you are a Christian you know that Jesus is enough, His word is enough, and His power is enough for you to have faith in Him. Because a true Christian, don’t just settle for a belief, because they know God deserves faithfulness.

Matthew 6:33 said, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Surrender yourself to the Lord, have a total faith in Him, remove your doubt and anxiety of what could go wrong and all things that matter will be provided for you.

White Washed Tombs and Skeletons in the Closet by Pastor John Mateos Ong

White Washed Tombs and Skeletons in the Closet by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Many of us believers are still struggling to show the real us. We have this fear that forbids us to tell all the truth about us. This makes us have either of these two, a whitewashed tomb or hypocrisy, and skeletons in the closet or too many hidden truths. Hypocrisy comes when we cover up our sins while secrecy of sins comes when we hide the truth that needs to be addressed.

As true believers of Christ, we’d rather be exposed in the light of truth than to hide our sins in the dark just as the evil wants. And to help us clean our own skeletons in the closet here are some points as our guide:

1. Be Real – God can’t bless what you hide. It is very simple, first of all, you need to accept and be true to yourself. It is said that no one’s perfect, everyone has his or her own weakness but what can you do about this weakness? Do you use it to paralyze yourself or you expose it so God can help you with that part? God wants to heal you, He wants to forgive you, and He wants to bless you but first, you have to be real and admit that you need Him.

Proverbs 38:13 “Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.”

Some things you need to be real about:

• Financial Situation

• Emotions

• Love for the Lord

• Capacity

• Sickness

• Reality

• Sin

2. Repent – God can’t set you free from what you don’t confess. Repent and do not go back to the sin that you admitted. If you do not give up your sins you will just be in a cycle of returning to something that holds you from being free. Sometimes we want to clean up our closet of skeletons but we do not give repentance to our sins, which is why we tend to be chained with these sins.

Acts 2:38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

3. Put Your Identity in Jesus – When you don’t know who you are, remember whose you are. A true Christian is identifiable. They are the ones who proudly say that they want to be clean and set apart for the Lord. A believer of Christ is the ones who do not think of what others will define them because they already define themselves as for the Lord.

John 1:12 “Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God—”

Christian Life and Witness Course

Christian Life and Witness Course

EVERYONE IS WELCOME!

TAKE PART IN THIS LIFE TIME OPPORTUNITY TO RE-IGNITE YOUR FAITH AND SHARE IT WITH OTHER THROUGH A WORLD CLASS EVANGELISM AND DISCIPLESHIP TRAINING BY THE METRO MANILA CELEBRATION WTH WILL GRAHAM!

TOGETHER, LET’S LEARN THE BASICS OF EVANGELISM AND DISCIPLESHIP IN SIMPLE FORMAT WHILE WE PRAISE AND WORSHIP THE LORD WITH THE “CHRISTIAN LIFE AND WITNESS COURSE” ON NOVEMBER 5 — NOVEMBER 25, 2018.

SEE YOU THERE!

—FOR MORE DETAILS, YOU MAY CHECK THE FOLLOWING POSTERS.—

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The Wall of Jericho by Pastor John Mateos Ong

The Wall of Jericho by Pastor John Mateos Ong

The book of Joshua presents a character named Rahab, a prostitute living in Jericho who holds a vital role for the success of Israelites in invading the land of Jericho. She was the girl who let the two spies of Joshua into her house and who hid them from the soldiers of the King of Jericho. Continuing the story, Israelites was now in front of Jericho when the soldiers closed the gate so that they can’t enter the land. God then told Joshua that He already gave the land of Jericho in Joshua’s hands. God gave instructions to Joshua, and with God’s help and faith and obedience of Joshua and the Israelites, the walls of Jericho came tumbling down.

We can see in this that first, God uses the lowest of the lows to fulfill His promise to Joshua. So if you’re thinking, can God use you? Yes, God will use each one of us for His plans for everyone. Second, if God promised you something, consider it good as done. Third and most important, we have to act and persevere; we have to continue the plan even if things seem impossible to be done.

Here are three points we get in the story of Joshua, Rahab and the wall of Jericho.

1. Faith Requires Action – If God just gives us commands that are easy, then how can we show that we have faith in Him? What kind of faith do we give to God if we want Him to show us a sure success beforehand? Sometimes, our problem is we say that we commit to the Lord, but when the time comes that we need to act according to His plan we doubt or worst we do not obey. This means our faith doesn’t only need to be announced, it also needs and requires an action regardless of the success and blessings that God may give afterward. It is said in James 2:14, faith without action is dead. Just like Rahab, she acted on her faith, which leads her from being labeled a prostitute to an upright woman.

2. God has won your Battle – Before the battle of Jericho has started, God already told Joshua that He gave the land to his hands. It shows here that even if we haven’t seen God’s action to our battle, He already won it for us. And the other thing that He needs to win is the battle inside of us. We are sometimes get overwhelmed by our worries because we have a huge problem in front of us. We have our own wall of Jericho that hinders us to claim that God already won our battle for us. But take heart, no wall or hindrance can stand against our God who is willing to empower us to break down our walls.

3. Do it Anyway – This is how perseverance works. You do it anyway, even if you see no progress yet. Even if it’s not yet clear but God told you so, you do it anyway. Because time will come that every perseverance and faith we give for His plans will pay off. Just like the Israelites who put their effort for 6 days, without knowing the reason why God’s instructions need to take that long but they do anyway, and on the 7th day God fulfills His promise to Joshua and He bring the wall down.

The Rise of a Leader by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

The Rise of a Leader by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

Who among you are leaders? The truth is, every one of us can be a leader or is already a leader— you’re already a leader if you’re a parent, or simply assigned by your teacher to lead your group, and even in work if there are people under you. In the Bible, one of the most known leaders is Moses; and when the name Moses was raised to conversation it was always followed by the name of Joshua. Today, we’re going to tackle about Joshua, the leader next to Moses, and how God reminded him to be strong and courageous.

Moses was very old by the time of their journey towards the Promised Land, but after his disobedience to God’s clear command, he was told that he cannot proceed to the Promised Land, and so God called him to the top of a mountain to just show how wide and beautiful it is and then there died peacefully, no one knows what happened to Moses by that time but as God’s promise, he was personally buried by God in a place that up until now no one knows the exact location. In Deuteronomy, before Moses died, he already passed the legacy, the leadership and the reminders to Joshua before the Israelites. The story continued by God telling Joshua that Moses already died, and so he must be ready and the Israelites to pass the Jordan river towards the land He had promised. God, provided everything for them and promised that He will guide Joshua just as how He guided Moses.

In Joshua 1:6-9, we see that God said three times to Joshua to be strong and courageous, and not deviate from the word, because He is the next leader of the Israelites. God knows that His plans for Joshua is difficult but God also promised that He would always be with Joshua, He just needs to be strong and courageous.

It is true that it’s hard to lead, mostly when no one’s going to follow you. There are instances when the leader’s gone, the group tends to forget the teachings and reminders and become disunited. But how can we overcome these? How can we become strong and courageous just what God wants us to be? Here are three points that can help us to grow stronger and more courageous leaders of God:

1. Read it Aloud – Do not let this book of the law depart from your mouth. Some of us are guilty of falling asleep while reading the bible. Which is why it is more ideal to read the Bible aloud, in this case, it sinks into our minds more making us remember and understand more the Word of God. There is power in tongue, when we say the word aloud we are already declaring his Word.

2. Keep in Mind – Meditate on it, day and night. The Holy Spirit raises verses that really strike you, when this comes, you can highlight it on your bible, write it on your journal, and you will read it several times asking the Lord what He really wants to tell you. And while we meditate on these verses, we must keep it in our minds. How? Ideally, we can create a tune out of it so it is personal, and we can memorize and remember the Word very well, this fills us with the Spirit again making us strong and courageous.

3. Apply It – So you can be careful to do all that is written in it. This means God’s promise in order to prosper us is to apply His Word. There are some people that suppress God’s plan because they are too afraid to apply His word in their lives. They know God, they believe in Him but they do not want to move for His Word. But God empowers us to move, to apply His Word and to be leaders that will show the people that he’s willing to be strong and courageous for the one true King.

The Great Big Question by Pastor Peter Aguila

The Great Big Question by Pastor Peter Aguila

The world is in between left and right chaos. Local and international turmoil is disturbing many. Questions are popping all around, why are we experiencing these? How worse these suffering and danger could get?

In Matthew 24 Jesus tackled how the earth will be destroyed and that no stone will be left on another, deceivers will come to Him calling Him the Messiah, wars, and rumors will arise as the end times will come. And in John 16:33, in this world we will experience trials and sorrows. It is long ago prophesied that the world will be shaken and will be in tribulations; now we’re experiencing these because the so-called worldwide chaos is nearly here. But God said all of these so that we may find peace in Him.

Take heart, because I have overcome the world. – Jesus said. In times like these where everybody’s questioning why all of these are happening? Will we be saved? Who is saying the truth? We must be glad and put our trust in Him because only the ones who believes and has his faith in Him will be saved. As soon as the world crash down in wars, crisis, calamities, and unbelievers, He will save those who are His child for He said HE HAS OVERCOME THE WORLD.

Waters of Meribah by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Waters of Meribah by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Israel had finally reached the banks of the Jordan River after their deliverance from Egypt and the long march through the wilderness. God was ready to fulfill his promise to Abraham and give his people possession of the Promised Land. God was ready, but Israel was not. They believed the faithless report of the 10 spies and were afraid to enter in, so God turned them around and allowed them to wander in the wilderness for another 40 years until a new generation could grow up to become his chosen nation.

38 years later, a whole new generation of children of Israel was born and raised; they were only 2 years away from coming to the Promised Land. The problem was they began to be like their fathers who doubted God. The new generation knew of the miracle-working power of God, of the guiding hand of God and of the promises of God, but they were still a rebellious nation. They would not trust God and they were constantly murmuring and complaining.

We quickly forget what God has done for us in the past. If we would only remember how he healed us before, how he delivered us before and how he has provided for us all along, perhaps we could have greater faith and trust that He will do it again. But no matter how many promises God fulfills in us, we still doubt whether he will fulfill the next one. No matter how many times God provides our needs, we still wonder if he will supply our next need.

This was proven when the new generation of Israel grumbled upon Moses and ranting about their thirst. In fear of his life, Moses appeals to God that leads to God telling Moses, 8 “Take the staff, and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water. You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink.” Moses did what God said, he took the staff, gathered the assembly but he struck the rock twice that caused the water to gush out from it. God said to Moses, “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.”

In our lives, we see some of our sins as too small to anger God, but in His eyes, a sin is still a sin no matter how small or big it is. Because of Moses’ distrustful act, God’s holiness vanished in the eyes of Israel. God’s Holiness is what sets him apart from us to let us know He is our powerful and capable God. And as His children, He also wants us to be holy because we are His chosen people. God was disappointed to Moses because He chose Moses to lead, he set Moses apart but he failed to trust God.

Here are 3 points how to remain set-apart for God’s use:

1. Believe His Word – when God said something, he means it so you need to trust it. Disobedience makes you forfeit His promise. Promises that are shown to you through Word, visions, and prophesies. We are set apart for God’s use but sometimes we are used by other means. And through those distractions, we forfeit God’s promise to us.

2. Know your Destiny - to what are you set apart for? Before anything else, we should know where we’re going. Each of us has own destiny that awaits us. God wants you to achieve something, which is why it is important for you to know it because, if not, it will be just another nonsense achievement. When you knew the plan God has set for you, then work with all your heart and avoid these 3 distractions.

a. Lust of the Flesh – ways of the world, addiction, wrong relationships

b. Lust of the Eyes – no contentment, comparison

c. Pride of Life – fame, money, achievements, applause of men

3. Respond in Obedience – why do we need to respond in obedience? Because sometimes we thought God will always wait for us to be ready for His plan. But what we need to know is that despite any circumstance, we must trust and obey God like how Moses obeyed and trust Him after being told he cannot go to the Promised Land.

As it is in Heaven by Bro. Ron Jaworski

As it is in Heaven by Bro. Ron Jaworski

According to the Lord’s prayer, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven”. The will of God is to have Heaven here on earth. The question is, why is there sickness here on earth? Why are there killings, addiction, calamities and heinous acts of mankind? Is that what heaven looks like as it is said in the prayer the will of the Lord be done on earth as it is in Heaven. If it’s God’s will to bring his will in heaven here on earth, what is happening to our world?

We are aware that God wants the earth to be like heaven but we are far from being like Heaven. Is there poverty in His kingdom? Sickness? Death? None! His will is to make the heaven and earth alike but His will is not being done here in our world. The problem is the dominion of the earth has been given to man and man sinned. We have normalized bad things being the will of God to us, but it is a misconception that leads the mankind to sin more. It all started with one sin of a man, Adam, the sin that gave dominion to Satan. It brought death, sickness, and disease. This caused sin to rule over many— blinding the minds of those who don’t believe. The good news is God has corrected it through the death of His Son Jesus Christ. We have been freed from the works of evil the moment Jesus Christ died on the Cross.

Now, it is up to us, the kingdom of God is within us. We’re now in charge of bringing a piece of heaven here on earth. It is not God’s will for us to suffer in the hands of evil; he doesn’t want us to be destroyed because it is only the devil that kills. God has no pleasure in destroying or seeing anyone die, God simply wants us to repent and be healed. The truth is God gave us the solution not the problem and the solution is Jesus Christ.

He paid for your healing with His life. Your life has been paid for you to be healed. There are two kinds of healing—the gift of healing and healing received by Faith. Not all people have the gift of healing but everyone can still be healed. How? By faith. Believe that Jesus paid for your healing and believe that it is not dependent on God but it is up to you to receive. Receive it, believe it and you will be healed.

How come not everyone gets healed?

Remember that as far as God is concerned, healing is already fully paid for by the blood of His Son Jesus. To be healed is to believe 100% and have no doubts that God is able to do what He promised. If your faith has 1% doubt it is now equivalent to total unbelief. We must know that our healing depends on our faith that we will receive God’s grace. Sometimes we don’t get healed not because of God’s sending problem but our receiving problem, our faith. Just because we don’t see it, doesn’t mean it is not there.

Remember: There is no sickness in Heaven. The kingdom of God is within you. Jesus paid for your healing. Sometimes, not everyone gets healed, but it is not God’s fault. It’s not a sending problem it’s a receiving problem. In our faith we receive healing, and in our faith, we bring Glory to him. Mostly, believe God’s promises 100% and do not doubt no matter what.

Romans 4:18-24 “In hope, he believed against hope. He did not weaken in faith.”

Blessings and Curses by Pastor John Mateos Ong

Blessings and Curses by Pastor John Mateos Ong

The story of Balaam, Balak and the Israelites is an exciting story. It tells how God guided the Israelites in their sojourn in the plains of Moab. The Israelites have defeated two kings already which alarmed King Balak; and so he sent his men to Balaam, the one who give blessings and curses through God, to curse the Israelites. God showed Himself to Balaam through a dream and told him to say and do only what He says him to do. Balaam obeyed but his error and the source of his wickedness came from sabotaging the Israelites as they entered the Promised Land. He tipped the king how to get the Israelites to commit sin by enticing them with sexual immorality and food sacrificed to idols. The Israelites fell into transgression due to these traps and God sent a deadly plague to them as a result (Numbers 31:16).

As humans, we still don't know how blessings work and received. We cannot expect to receive a blessing if we are still slaves of sins. In order to be blessed, we must first know how to be in a position of blessing.

  1. Be Righteous – Blessings are important for us but we ignore the importance of being righteous for God. We can ask ourselves, how important is holiness in our lives? Are we ready to give up things that are not pleasing to God? Take a heart check and see if being right in God's eyes is more important than following our own desires. Keep in mind the verse in James 5:16 which says that the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

  2. Bless Others – In Proverbs 11:25 it says that the one who blessed others is abundantly blessed. Blessing others doesn't just mean telling them "God Bless", it is the affection and pure thought of really praying for them to be blessed by God. In fact, the most beautiful blessing we can do is wholeheartedly and selflessly blessing our enemies.

  3. Bounce Curses – There will be people who will curse us but we can always cancel curses in Jesus name. As the Genesis 12:3 say, "and whoever curses you I will curse." Let God do the punishment and judgment, don't revenge because God will be the one who will avenge for you. Continue to do good deeds and just bounce back the curses thrown at you.

Know God by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

Know God by Pastora Monique Lopez-Ong

Moses was called by God to go to the top of Mount Sinai, so he assigned his brother Aaron to lead while he’s gone and he was gone for days. Israelites start to get confused again, they asked Aaron to make them a god that they can worship. Out of pressure and lack of belief in God, Aaron collected all the gold jewelry of Israelites and there form a golden calf which the Israelites worshipped. Moses got angry with the idea of the golden calf; mostly about the fact that Israelites turned to be forgetful and ungrateful about the one true God that brought them out of Egypt. It’s just a proof of how shallow their knowledge and relationship with God is.

We cannot tolerate the attitude of Israelites, as a true Christian, we should build a strong relationship with Him. But how can we know God better? Here are some tips to improve our connection with our Father:

1. Make it personal – there’s a huge difference between knowing God and just attending church. You got to make a relationship, the intimacy of your personal relationship with God is way a lot better than just hearing preachers and making it to Sunday services. He wants to know you, not just what you want to pray for, He’s more interested with his child more than anything else.

2. Trust Him – We are guilty of being impatient with God’s promises. Sometimes, we question if He would really fulfill those and there are also times that we make compromises and do it ourselves. God is never late nor early, He is always at the right time that is why it is important for us to trust Him and Him alone.

3. Talk to Him – Moses talked to God like how two friends talk to each other. God wants a tireless and intimate conversation that builds a strong foundation of faith in one’s heart. He wants you to know him more by talking to Him in prayer. He is alive and he can hear your words if you just choose to make a pure conversation with Him. Tell Him how you feel, how grateful you are that you are still alive, how excited you are for His return. Drop those meaningless prayers comprise of a long wish list, he wants to hear what your heart says.

Let’s not be afraid to turn to Him— always. Forget the unnecessary fear that He will punish us, because he tends to do it until we clearly see that He is the only one we need to seek. We must create a relationship with him because if not, we will just worship deceitful false gods.