Becoming Bitter or Better by Matnur Sijabat 4/3/2018

Becoming Bitter or Better

Brother and sister,

On one of our trip to Indonesia we are called by a lady to pray for her son who have been very very sick for a long time. This lady was so distressed with his son’s sickness. She has lost one son and a daughter previously. This lady could not bear the possibility of losing another son. Dian and I come to her house. We pray for salvation and healing for his son, while this lady was crying besides his sick son. We also pray for the father, mother, the son’s wife and then we left. A couple days later we heard that the son die…….

You can imagine how devastated this lady is…

We have seen a lot cases like this everywhere we go…

This world we live is full of sorrow, sufferings, heartache, disappointments, illness, abuse, betrayal,  injuries and death, brokenness, and disasters.

But the question that millions of people want an answer to is why? Why does there have to pain and suffering?

That question was first asked thousands of years ago by Job, and it’s repeated through out the Psalms. Why God? Why is this happening?

Throughout the wars, 9/11, earthquakes , the tsunami, the famines of Africa, and many more,  many lives were lost. Why God? Why would a God who is good and full of love allow these things to happen?

All of us have had personal times in our own lives of disappointment and tragedy and we too have wanted an answer to that question.

Back in 1999 I received a phone call from my brother informing me that my father was very sick. I flew home. A couple days later my father passed away in my arm. Two days after the funeral another tragedy struck. My sister had an motor accident, bleeding and  unconscious. A nearby truck rushed her and me and my wife to hospital. On the way to hospital on top of that truck I hold my sister in my arms, covered by the blood from her injury, I looked to the sky and cried out to the our Lord….Why Lord….why…?

In a matter of days I lost two persons that I love…

In 2011 I lost my son after fighting leukaemia for 4 years. Again…I cried out…why Lord…what sins did I do  to deserve all of this?….

That was a parent’s worst nightmare to bury a son…and on that day I was faced with that nightmare…

Brother and Sister,

The Bible said in 1 Corinthians 13:12 says that in this life, we only see dimly, and from our perspective, we don’t understand life or God at times.

(“12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”)

Yet there are some things that we can understand and I’d like to share with you some possibilities for why God allows suffering in our lives.

There are some key biblical truths that provide enough light for us to find the right direction. We may not clearly understand everything, but we know we’ll eventually get to the right destination and understand it better.

So what are those biblical truths that will help our understanding?

1) God is not the Creator of evil and suffering-

The question has been asked- “Why didn’t God create a world where suffering and evil did not exist?” The answer is simple: He did. The Bible said in

Genesis 1:31 “ God saw all that He had made and it was very good.”

So if God is not the author of pain and suffering, where did it come from? God created humankind with a free will, which is necessary if we are to be able to express our love to God and to one another. We are all created, not like puppets on a string, but with a free will. We have the choice that we can love God or we can reject Him. We choose to be kind and generous or selfish. We choose to be good or bad. God gave us that ability with a free will

Because humans have made a choice to reject God and His way of life, evil exists. The evil exists when we choose to be selfish, arrogant, uncaring, hateful and abusive and the results are pain and suffering. Some have estimated that at least 90% of the world’s suffering is due to our choices of selfishness and sin.

For example, people look at famines and wonder why God allows starvation. There is enough food in the world to feed everyone. It’s our own self centeredness and lack of caring that causes this suffering.

Then there is natural evil like what we saw in the power point.  Earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, tsunamis, etc…The pain and suffering from these are astronomical.

Why would a God of love allow this to happen? The Bible said in Genesis 3:18 says it’s because of sin and selfishness that the world got corrupted and “thorns and thistles” entered the world. The earth and all of nature was cursed when sin entered our world. Mosquitoes, blow fly, deadly spider, weeds in your yard, cyclone and hurricanes are a result of natural evil.

So from a biblical point of view, we must understand that God did not create evil or suffering.

But couldn’t He have foreseen that evil would happen? There’s no doubt that He did but think of it this way. As parents, before you had children, didn’t you know that there was a real possibility that your children might suffer disappointment, pain, heart ache, that they might even endanger themselves or rebelling against you?

Even so, you had them because you knew of the even greater potential for love and real meaning in life. It’s the same with God, He knew that we would rebel against Him but He also knew that many would choose to love Him and follow Him and live eternally with Him. It was worth it to Him, even though He would have to go through the great pain of giving up His Son on a cruel cross.

So this is the first truth that sheds light on our understanding of suffering, that God did not create evil or suffering.


2) Although suffering isn’t thought of as good, God can use it to accomplish good. God can use this to draw people to Him.

Throughout the Old Testament, we recall how the people of Israel would turn back to God only after a period of suffering.

There are times in all our lives when suffering gets our attention. Only suffering lifts our eyes off ourselves, and makes us lift them towards God. God wants you to notice him, to hear what he has to say to you.

The King of kings, the Creator of the universe wants your attention.

Suffering may be the only means of doing that. It may be the only means of getting you to slow down, quieten your heart and mind, removing all the clutter and all the noise.

We are a people who live such hectic lives, racing around, being busy and God sometimes just pulls us up short and says – Okay, if I have to make you lie on your back to get you to look upwards.

I can testify to that on many occasions in my life, and I am slowly learning that, since all of my suffering and tragedy.

Now let me ask you a few questions:

Would David have turned again to God if Nathan had not confronted him with his?

Would Pharaoh have let the people of God go without the plagues and the angel of death?

Would Joseph have become the humble man with love and compassion for his brothers if God had not allowed him to be sold into slavery in Egypt?

Would Namaan have turned to the living God if he had not been struck by leprosy?

Would the woman of Samaria had a life changing encounter with Christ if she had not gone to the well in the heat of the day because of her past life?

Brothers and sisters, we could list many examples not only from the bible but from our own lives when God used suffering to grab someone’s attention – to deliver them from sin, to draw them closer to Himself. It is because He wants you to hear His voice, to know His love, …to experience His grace.

We saw that in the life of Joseph who was sold into slavery by his brothers, falsely accused and falsely imprisoned. After many years, he was put into a role of authority and was able to save the lives of his family. He said, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done”. When you are in a loving, committed relationship with God, He will take your pain and use it to bring good to your life and glory to His name.

If we could see the big picture, we would know that pain is sometimes a way of God disciplining us for our long term good. God can accomplish something positive out of our negatives. The Bible said in Roman 8:28 “And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose.” If we are committed to following Jesus, He will take the pain that we can’t understand and turn it into good.

God took the worst event in the history of man and brought forth the most wonderful thing that has ever happened for man. God, in the form of His son Jesus, died upon a cruel cross so that we could be forgiven and redeemed. His death seemed like the end, it seemed like the worst thing that could ever happen. But on the 3rd day, He defeated death by rising from the grave giving us the opportunity of eternal life, which is the best thing that could ever happen. God will take our suffering and bring good out of it even though we don’t understand it in the midst of our pain.

So let’s understand that God didn’t create evil and suffering; and He will use our suffering for our own good and draw us to Him



Here is another reason God uses suffering in our lives. It is a means of encouragement and building in our faith. When we come through a time of testing, of trial or of suffering, our faith in God is strengthened.

We know that when all seemed lost and hopeless, when all the things of earth failed us, when friends deserted us, when those who were supposed to protect us didn’t, when the pain seemed unbearable, we experienced his arms around us, protecting us, lifting us back to himself. Without the suffering we would never have known the depth of His love, the power of His strength and the wonder of His grace.

Most of you are familiar with Psalm 23, if not please take time when you go home and read it. Notice some things when you read it that the sheep does nothing but follow. The Shepherd does it all. It is only after the valley and the shadow of death, in the presence of enemies that the goodness and mercy flows.

Some examples from the Bible

Peter – his faith must have been encouraged by those few steps out of the boat into the storm waves. He must have learnt even more, when he began to drown and Jesus rescued him. His faith was really shaken when he denied Jesus three times. How much must it have been restored when Jesus told him ‘feed my lamb Peter.’ Don’t you think his sermon on the day of Pentecost, where 3000 people saved, was helped and shaped by those experiences?

Would Paul have been the compassionate and passionate missionary without his thorn in the flesh? Would he have had the strength of faith without the experiences of jail, of being shipwrecked and the numerous whippings? Would he have known God to be sufficient in all and every situation without such experiences?

Mary and Martha – ever wonder what happened to their faith after Lazarus was raised from the dead? How could it have been encouraged if their beloved brother had not died?

Thomas – how his faith must have changed after going through that period of doubt. How his heart must have been encouraged to see Jesus again and have his questions and doubts answered. Yet without the suffering he would not have had the experience.

Zaccheus, the tax collector (Matthew), the Samaritan woman at the well, the prostitute who anointed Jesus’s feet with tears and Nicodemus who came by night. Don’t you think that the suffering these people experienced helped, shaped and moulded them for Jesus.

So God also use suffering  to help build our faith


4) There is no comparison between our suffering and the good God has in store for those who love Him.

I don’t want to minimize anyone’s pain but it helps if we take a long term perspective on our sufferings. Paul said, (2 Cor 4:17)“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” This said by a man who went through more suffering than most of us will ever know. He also said, (Rom 8:18) “For I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” Paul had a long term perspective on pain, he looked at things from an eternal point of view and we need to get in the habit of doing that as well.

And the same will be true for us in heaven, we may have suffered for 66 years, or 96 years on earth but when compared to the goodness and joy of eternity, we won’t even remember the pain we had on earth.

Paul said in 1 Corinthians 2:9 “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived, what God has prepared for those who love Him.”

God didn’t create evil, man did. He will take our suffering and pain and turn it into good when we love Him and trust Him. Suffering and pain will be over soon and there will be no more of it. And all of our suffering and pain can’t compare with the goodness and joy we’ll experience in eternity one day.

The question may be asked, “if God is all powerful and loving and good, why doesn’t He do away with evil in the world?” The answer is, just because He hasn’t yet, doesn’t mean that He won’t. It’s kind of like reading half way through a book and wanting to know why the author hasn’t made things better before we get to the end of the book. The bible clearly teaches that one day all suffering will end and people will be held accountable for the evil they’ve done. So when is that day coming? Why does God wait so long?

One of the answers is that we as people are delaying God from doing away with evil.

The Bible said in 2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”

The day for suffering and evil is coming to an end, but out of His great love for us, God is patiently waiting and giving us opportunities to turn to Him.

Have you turned to Him brother and sister? Don’t wait until it’s too late.

At the end of this service I invite you to come forward for prayers and I will ask our Pastor and the elders of the church to pray for you

Brother and Sister,

Most of us have been through challenging times and our attitude in the midst of these moments has shaped who we’ve become—bitter or better.

We’ve all seen examples of how the same suffering that causes one person to turn bitter, to reject God, to become hard and angry.

There are people who rejects God after relationship that does not work, prayers that has not been answered, sickness that has not been healed, tragedy and death thats happening to them.

But we  also have seen examples of where sufferings  can cause another person to turn to God, to become more gentle and more loving and more tender, willing to reach out to compassionately help other people who are in pain.

So when tragedy strikes, as it will;

when suffering comes, as it will;

when you’re wrestling with pain, as you will—

and when you make the choice to run into his arms, here’s what you’re going to discover: you’ll find peace to deal with the present, you’ll find courage to deal with your future, and you’ll find the incredible promise of eternal life in heaven.

If ever there was a man who had the right to become bitter it was Joseph. Joseph’s mum died when he was just a young boy. His own brothers were so jealous of him that when he was seventeen years of age, they sold him into slavery to get rid of him. It looked like everywhere Joseph turned, things went wrong in his life.

He tried to do a good job. He decided to keep himself sexually pure, and he was accused to rape and put in prison. Then he was forgotten in prison by a butler, a man servant, after he had done a great favour for him. If ever anyone had the right to be bitter, it was Joseph. Yet, Joseph chose against bitterness towards God. Joseph chooses instead to obey God.

Another example, David. He does not have a trouble-free life. We’ve discovered that his life consisted of one trial after another. He spent years in the wilderness, running for his life even though God had already anointed him as king. His family was a dysfunctional family. His son Absalom was going to kill him. David committed adultery and murder and he suffered the consequences of his sin. But David chose instead to repent and to be closer to God.

Like David, we can’t control much of the difficulty and suffering that comes into our lives, but we certainly can control how we respond to those afflictions. And depending on how we respond, we can either become bitter or better.

 Brother and Sister,

Whenever I go through a difficult time in my life, I have a choice. I can let my anger against God control my life, I can sit there and get stuck in self-pity. Or I can, like David, choose to humble myself and enter into God’s grace and mercy. I can reflect on the fact that I am a sinner, saved only by the grace of God.

The Apostle Paul, was able to apply the very same lessons in the midst of his suffering. We know that Paul was tormented by his thorn in the flesh, whatever that was. We also know that he was arrested, beaten and persecuted for his faith. But Paul faced all these trials with a deep sense of humility.

 Are you hurting today and don’t understand why?

Are you suffering and has been praying and are you still waiting for an answer?

Or do you have a specific prayer request? Or do you want to receive Jesus for the first time…

 Turn to God and let Him assure you that He loves you and that one day, you will indeed “understand it better “

He understands your brokenness and sorrow, He understands betrayal and forsakenness. For He went through all of these things on our behalf when He suffered and died on the cross simply because He loves us.

Lets pray,

Closing Prayers

Father God,

Each of us has a choice to become better or bitter in our lifetime. The better is that God loves, forgives, and makes a way for His people to escape bitterness. The bitter is a lifetime wasted in regret and anger—burdened and burdening others.

We repent and humble ourselves Lord…Help us Lord…In Jesus Name.



2018Series3-Developing and Growing a servant’s heart Feb 25 by Snr Ps Ay Nee Ng


 What picture or idea comes to mind when we hear the word “servant?”

The picture or idea would be :- a person who is lowly, poor, subservient

Picture this :-taken from ODB Growing a Servant’s Heart January 10, 2018                                                                     I am among you as one who serves. Luke 22:27

The writer writes:-It was a long day at work. But when I got home, it was time to start my “other” job­: being a good dad. Greetings from my wife and kids soon became, “Dad, what’s for dinner?” “Dad, can you get me some water?” “Dad, can we play soccer?”

I just wanted to sit down. And even though part of me really wanted to be a good dad, I didn’t feel like serving my family’s needs. That’s when I saw it: a thank-you card my wife had received from someone at church. It pictured a bowl of water, a towel, and dirty sandals. Across the bottom were these words from Luke 22:27: “I am among you as one who serves.”

Don’t we all have this cry, “Lord, help us to become more like You.” I do whenever I feel I don’t measure up to His call on me.

That statement of Jesus’s mission, to serve those He came to seek and save (Luke 19:10), was exactly what the writer needed. If Jesus was willing to do the dirtiest of jobs for His followers—like scrubbing His followers’ no doubt filthy feet (John 13:1–17)—I could get my son a cup of water without grumbling about it. In that moment, I was reminded that my family’s requests to serve them weren’t merely an obligation, but an opportunity to reflect Jesus’s servant heart and His love to them. When requests are made of us, they are chances to become more like the One who served His followers by laying down His life for us.

Before I begin on my message on “Developing and Growing a servant Heart” Let’s start with this prayer:- Lord, sometimes it’s hard to serve others’ needs. Help us to become more like You, willing to express Your love in the many opportunities we have to serve those around us each day. Thank you for opening our understanding and we commit this time to You.” In Jesus Christ name, Amen

This is what is required to Develop  and Grow a servant heart:-

A)Idea of Servanthood                                                                                                                                 

B)Heart has to be right                                                   

C) Is a Mindset Change.How can we grow in our thinking as servants?  

Let us look at the First requirement:-                                                                                                              

A)Idea of Servanthood                                                                                                                                  

God’s love for us empowers us to serve others. Developing a servant heart is about cultivating an attitude of servitude through the love of Jesus Christ and growing is about building that attitude of servitude that becomes second nature to us.

The idea of servanthood is not our everyday idea and yet Jesus Christ demands it. Servanthood is counter-cultural. The American culture which is no different to any western culture, worships  autonomy. The Aussies, we love to be independent instead of interdependent, self-sufficient, make our own decisions, be our own boss/persons, be egalitarian and the thought to do what people tells us to do and when to do affronts us. The norm of western society proclaiming the values of many of our culture today would be signatured by Frank Sinatra’s song “I did it My Way” but definitely not for the Christians–we are called to be servants, serving in servanthood.

Cultivate is an awareness that is necessary for every believer to develop a servitude attitude and not mumble, grumble nor complain nor be complacent in society.

So I come to my next point – Developing the right heart and growing in our love for Jesus

B)Heart has to be right                                                                                                                                        

Growing the Servant Heart encourages the growth of a Christ-centred character for believers and especially leaders and as we serve we grow our love for Him. We follow the example of our leader and Master , teacher and Saviour, Jesus Christ- the greatest servant of all.

Our heart must be right. If we are laden with the cares of this world, it will entrap us . The Bible has this saying, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:21)  In the previous two verses Jesus explained why one should store one’s treasure in heaven rather than on earth.

If we have all the cares in this world and chase after these worldly possession, we will find that submission and humility may be out of our equation in life but the attitude of succeeding and conquest becomes our mission and goal.

When our heart is soften, available, compassionate , understanding, without any bitterness and humbled, in my new year’s message on having a heart that God can move, well, these attitudes would allow God to move our hearts and then the subject of “servants” will bring a more compassionate, wise understanding to our call to servanthood as well as lead with a Servant Heart.

When we take up our cross for Jesus, our self and everything that does with “me,” “my,” and “I” no longer exist. It is no longer about our pride nor our independence, but a humbled and contrite heart that grows in loving and serving our Lord Jesus Christ. It becomes second nature to us to serve with gladness, happiness and joy. In a way, the Asian culture has this servitude attitude instilled upon a child’s growing years.

As we continue to build this servant heart of ours there will come a time when our hearts no longer war within ourselves to question our living standards nor what we wear or what roof is over us. We understand His hand on our lives and learn what is to be contend with what we have.

Let us now Read the passage: Luke 22:24–30 and learn from our Lord Jesus Christ

C)Develop a servant heart–Is a Mindset Change                                                                                                            How can we grow in our thinking as servants?

I took this from Kevin Halloran –his 5-questions-to-help-you-grow-as-a-servant-of-christ/ Oct 3, 2014 Here are a few questions relating to being a servant of Jesus Christ that he has been challenged to ask himself daily in light of the insights (and convictions) gleaned and I have come out with my own understanding as well:

  1. Am I a servant of Jesus Christ or do I make Jesus my servant?
  2. Is being a servant of Jesus Christ at the core of who I consider myself?
  3. Do I realize that being a servant is the way to greatness?
  4. Knowing what Christ has done for me, how can I be anything other than a faithful servant?
  5. Do I as a servant value my Master’s Word?

Let us look at His 5 Questions raised and I will also add in my thoughts

  1. Am I a servant of Jesus Christ or do I make Jesus my servant?

So often instead of serving Christ, we seek to make Him our servant even in our prayers. Instead of being grateful and thankful, we are insatiable in asking our Lord to fulfil our so called needs which actually are our wants in life. Don’t we all make God serve us with this attitude?

Church, we should have our prayers focusing on asking God what we can do for Him instead we focus only on what He can do for us .

So church, when we try and make God our servant, what happens is that, we focus on ourselves, our wants, our needs, and our problems though small somehow gets magnified.

Church, God isn’t our servant! God isn’t your servant! He is God–the Almighty One who created each one of us and has rights as Creator on our very existence. We are not our own, we have been purchased with a price (1 Corinthians 6:20). Let’s take our eyes off of ourselves and lift them up to joyfully serve our Master. Turn back your ways to the Lord!

  1. Is being a servant of Jesus Christ at the core of who I consider myself?

How do we profile ourselves? Are we more incline to how Paul profiles himself? Paul started in the book of Romans by addressing and affiliating himself to being a servant of Christ Jesus (Romans 1:1). Paul at his core was a servant.

How about us? If we are the redeemed how do we profile ourselves? Do we identify as a Christian? How many of us do read in our blog/ facebook, “we are the redeemed, saved by grace, loving Jesus?” The first thought is that, “they must be weird”

When we describe our identities, we may sound like many facebook/Twitter profiles listing relationships (husband, brother, father, wife, mother, etc), business associates, favourite sport teams, political affiliations, or foody lover or like us –we have a whatsapp group called “Makan group”.

Seldom do we see someone stating themselves as loving God or a believer but more of the world value system!! There is nothing wrong with a profile like that, but we can’t let those descriptors fuel or govern our core identity.

Then you may ask, “What is our core identity” As my topic is developing and growing a servant heart- “ Our core identity is a servant of Jesus Christ, loving God!” We are the redeemed, cultivating a servant’s servitude and building a heart after God


Church, there is a challenge here- Will we make it our goal to wake up each morning asking our loving saviour and Master, “How can I best serve You today? How can I please You, my Lord God almighty?”

  1. Do I realize that being a servant is the way to greatness? Many people want to do great things for God, but fewer people want to do mundane things for God. The fact is, servants are often called to the mundane–boring work that nobody wants to do, like arranging the chairs each Sunday or cooking or doing welcome and hospitality duties. We all want the limelight of being worship leaders or preaching each Sunday. It has been said to me that the person is not called to be greeters at the door nor hospitality but called to greater things in the Church like preaching!! Only thing is that they are not regular attendees!

Remember what the Lord said, “if you want to be great, be a servant first” The first shall be the last and the last shall be the first!” Being a servant is not glamorous–in a worldly sense. Jesus told James and John that the way to greatness was through servanthood. “…Whoever would be great among you must be your servant” (Matthew 20:26). We are to be of the same mind of Jesus who, “…emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:7-8).

Christ is the ultimate servant who stripped himself of His Divine privileges and laid down His life to take our sins upon Himself and reconcile us to God. It is only through the Ultimate servant that we can serve God, which leads to the next question.

  1. Knowing what Christ has done for me, how can I be anything other than a faithful servant? The natural outflow of understanding God’s grace towards us in Christ is to, “present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God” (Romans 12:1). Knowing God’s grace in a deep, experiential way, will transform us to godliness and good works and forge servanthood into a core identity (Titus 2:11-14). Jesus’ apostles had the greatest view of God’s mercy toward us because they saw the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. The majority of them gave their lives for the sake of serving Christ.

Meditate on the grace of Christ shown to us on the cross and recognize that He has freed you from your slavery to sin and enabled you to live in a way that pleases Him. You serve a new Master. Sin is no longer our master, but now our enemy. God is no longer our enemy, but now our Master–a Master more loving and gracious than we could ever imagine. Serve Him joyfully.

Remember how Abraham Lincoln fought to free slavery in America. We are not bound to each other but the bond of the Love of Jesus Christ has set us free to fight injustice and to serve each other as equals. Our only master is our Lord Jesus Christ!!

  1. Do I as a servant value my Master’s Word? Church, how do you feel right now? Honest, some are tired, some may be bored or just feeling lazy that the thought did enter in our minds that we want to chill out after church and not do anything but sleep! You must be wondering where am I getting with this thought.

Well, lazy and ungrateful servants don’t care much about their master’s commands. All they care about is their own comfort and doing the least amount of work as possible but getting the best pay, and don’t pay careful attention to what their masters ask of them. Don’t let that describe your service to God. We need to be men and women of highest integrity and dedicated to our Master’s Word, knowing that it is the Master’s training manual for godly living and service

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17)

The Word is our training manual to be servants of Christ. Without the Word, it would be like running a marathon after we have starved ourselves. We would not race effectively and would pass out due to exhaustion because we lack the fuel our bodies need. Servants of Christ need the spiritual sustenance provided to us in the Word for energy, training in righteousness, and equipping for good works of service as well as redirecting our path with His rebuke.

“Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).

Since our identity in Christ transforms us from slaves of sin to servants of Christ, we should no longer ask God, “What can you do for me?” but rather ask, “What can I do for you my Lord?”

Recap. Developing or Growing a servant heart , there are a few requirements. We look at:-

A)Idea of Servanthood

B)Heart has to be right

C)Is a Mindset Change                                                                                                                                                        -How can we grow in our thinking as servants?


The goal of Developing is cultivating a servitude attitude  and Growing is building strong the Servant Heart as a second nature, loving Jesus Christ more each day. Every child of God is to be Christ- centred, Bible based and Holy Spirit empowered modelling after our example- our Lord Jesus Christ himself.

That when we are at our race in our lives and face the seasons of our lives, may we remember that it is not how great we are or what we have done that God seeks in us but having a servant heart of contriteness, humility that clings on God’s word for our living standards and learning to lean on God for our every existence in life.

This Hymn by Edith Gilling Cherry was sung by five young missionaries as they prepared to make their fateful journey into the jungle to evangelise the Auca Indians of Ecuador. All five were martyred that day in January, 1956.              We Rest on thee                                                                                                                                                                We Rest on thee, our shield and our defender!                                                                                                             We go not forth alone against the foe;                                                                                                                              Strong in thy strength, safe in thy keeping tender;                                                                                                            We Rest on thee, and in thy name we go.                                                                                                                          Strong in thy strength, safe in thy keeping tender;                                                                                                            We Rest on thee, and in thy name we go ….

We Rest on thee, our shield and our defender!                                                                                                          Thine is the battle, thine shall be praised!                                                                                                                     When passing through the gates of pearly splendour;                                                                                            Victors, we rest with thee, through endless days.                                                                                                      When passing through the gates of pearly splendour;                                                                                                       Victors, we rest with thee, through endless days. –Edith Gilling Cherry (1895)

Church let us first develop a servitude attitude and grow our servant heart that our lives oozes with the love of Jesus Christ that continues serving Him at our local church.The Lord Jesus Christ seeks our growth in every area of our lives.

Let us pray.

Lord thank you that I do want to cultivate a servitude attitude and grow this heart of mine to have a servant heart like yours. Thank you that I am in a local church and I am ready to serve in anyway that will glorify Your name. Thank you that I can find my help in You. In Jesus name, Amen

2018 Healing Service- God’s Medicine Bottles Feb18 By Snr Ps Ay Nee Ng

Hello folks! Happy Chinese New Year ! Gong Xi Ni!!

We all do take medicine from time to time when it is needed. This is normally prescribed to us by our Doctor or the pharmacist or guess what, we try to be our own doctor. Occassionally we add extras –popping vitamin tablets to give us a boost in our health.

Church, we have the best Doctor in the whole world and the medicine cuts deep into our veins and blood stream, our joints and marrow and brings forth life into areas that most need His healing powers.

Today my message is on God’s medicine bottles.

In God’s bottles, you have:-

A) God’s Medicine                                                                                                                

B)Application of God’s medicine to receive healing                                                                                                  

C)His prescription on the Bottles                                                                                                 

D)Different Medicine in the Bottles

Ai)God’s Medicine                                                                                                                                                                      Well, do you want to know who is our best doctor and what is His medicine that is ever powerful that is prescribed to us?

First, Jesus Christ is our greatest Doctor (Exodus 15:26-“I am the Lord Your Healer) and Second, His medicine is the “word of God” which we understand as healing seeds in our spirit, soul and body.

Many make the mistake of substituting belief in healing for the actual taking of God’s medicine – His Word for healing. Many when in need of healing would say, “I believe in healing” without actually taking the medicine. Most of us like the quick fixes in our lives and prefer short cuts to anything, even healing!

What would you do?                                                                                                                                                         Folks, what good would it do to you to believe in food if you didn’t eat it? You would starve. What good would it do to you to believe in water if you didn’t actually drink any? You would die of thirst. What good would it be to you if you have medicine and not open the bottle to take the medicine. You would remain sick or become worst. Same with God’s word. You need to open the Bottle, that is, the Bible and take what’s in it-the medicine, ie, His Word which you need to read and meditate on.

God’s Word is His medicine. There are several parallels between God’s medicine and natural medicine. First, God’s Word is a healing agent just as natural medicine is a healing agent or catalyst. In other words, the medicine itself contains the capacity to produce healing. God’s Word contains inherent within it the capacity, the power, the energy, the ability, the nature to effect healing in your body.

His Nature to Effect Healing                                                                                                                                                    It is important to understand that it is God’s nature to effect healing and is found in God’s Word. These are Healing seeds into our spirit, soul and body                                                                                                                                     

Psalm 103:2-3 “Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases”                                                                                                                                                                              Psalm 107:20 “He sent His word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.”                                        Proverbs 4:22  “For they (His Words) are life to those that find them, and health to all their flesh.”                                        Isaiah 55:10-11 “the Word of God will accomplish what it was sent out to do.”                                                        John6:61-64 -Many Disciples Turn Back-61Aware that His disciples were grumbling about this teaching, Jesus asked them, “Does this offend you? 62Then what will happen if you see the Son of Man ascend to where He was before? 63The Spirit gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life 64However, there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray Him.)                                                                                                                                                                      John6:63 NLT  “The Spirit alone gives eternal life. Human effort accomplishes nothing. And the very words I have spoken to you are spirit and life.”                                                                                                                                                  John 5:21 For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom He wishes.

Church, this is so powerful to our receiving Healing .                                                                                                  Further example of His nature is reflected in the word of God.                                                                                            The Word itself contains the power to produce what it says, the promises in His Word produces spirit and life just as when God said, “Let there be light … and there was light.” Healing Seeds are Healing Scriptures- our Medicine to take. It contains and acts as a catalyst that within them the capacity to produce and initiate healing through the spirit, soul and body.

Hebrews 4:12NIV  “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. ”

Let us read again this time from Heb4:11-13 NIV “Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following the same pattern of disobedience. 12For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it pierces even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight; everything is uncovered and exposed before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account”

Barnes noted the fact that God cannot be deceived; that His word is “what God speaks”. There can be no escape from the penetrating, searching application of the Word of God. His “truth” is adapted to bring out the real feelings, that truth has power to show what man is– whether preached, or read, or communicated by conversation, or impressed upon the memory and conscience by the Holy Spirit, and is like a penetrating sword that lays open the whole man. There should, therefore, be the most faithful investigation of the heart, lest they should fail of the grace of God, and lose the hoped-for rest.

According to Gill’s Exposition, Christ is “the Word of God”; He has life in himself as God, he is the living God; he is the living Redeemer and Mediator; he is the author and giver of life, natural, spiritual, and eternal: and he is powerful, as he appears to be in the creation and sustaining of all things; in his miracles and ministrations; in the work of man’s redemption; in the preservation of his people, and in his advocacy and intercession

B)Application of God’s medicine –the Word of God to receive healing                                                                                  I)Feed, Read, Absorb and Meditate                                                                                                                                     The key to partaking of the life and healing power in the Word is feeding on it, taking and meditating on it daily until it penetrates your spirit where it deposits that life and energy back into your soul and body.

2)Stay on course-All Medication takes time to have its effect                                                                                           Let us understand that medicine is no respecter of persons. It will work for anyone who takes it and to some, a little longer than others. It is not a matter of God willing or not willing the healing of any individual, but whether or not the individual will receive healing by taking the medicine that produces it. Time will tell.

3) Take what you need, Don”t overdose and read the prescription                                                                                        All medication has prescriptions written on the bottle. Most importantly, medicine must be taken according to directions-what is prescribed to be effective or it may not work.                                                                                      Some medicine bottles have varying labels on it, either  “Take orally either once a day or three times a day or just at night” or this is not to be taken but ointment to apply. No matter how good the medicine is, it must be taken according to directions, or it won’t work. So it is with God’s medicine. It must be taken according to directions to work.

C) God’s Prescriptions –Clear Directions

There is clear directions for taking God’s medicine and this is found in Proverbs 4:20- 23.

Let us read :-Proverbs 4:20-23 (NIV) “My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words. 21 Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; 22 for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. 23 Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”

This little short excerpt is taken from Derek Prince, author of “God’s medicine Bottle” For many years Derek have known those verses from Proverbs 4:20-22 as “God’s medicine bottle.” But I have added verse 23 to my version of God’s Medicine Bottles. God declares that if we will rightly receive His words and His sayings, they will be life to us and health to all our flesh. The marginal translation for the word that is translated “health” is “medicine.” That’s why Derek say it’s “God’s medicine bottle.”                                                                                                                          And God says His medicine will provide us with health in all our flesh. In every area of our physical body it will provide health, but remember, the directions are on the bottle. The medicine only works if you take it according to the directions which I call prescriptions on God’s medicine Bottles.

So church, What are the directions on the bottle- the bible?

There are 5 directions- 5 Prescriptions:-                                                                                                                               1) Attend to God’s word.                                                                                                                   

2) Incline or bow down your ear and listen to His sayings.                                                                    

3) Let them not depart from your eyes, keep them before your eyes continually.                                                                                                                                       

4) Let them settle and abide in the midst of your heart.                                                        

5)Guard your heart

If you take the Word of God according to those 5 fold directions- as I call it God’s prescription, you will find, as Derek did many years ago, that God’s medicine bottle produces just the results that He claims. It brings life and health to all our flesh. Derek found that after a year on end in a hospital when doctors couldn’t heal him, God’s medicine did the job.

You can see again that God’s way of healing is spiritual. Power is ministered first to your spirit and then distributed to your soulish area to bring about lastly to your body. God’s medicine must be taken orally, internally and daily.

Church, listen, instead of wondering whether you have enough faith to be healed, just take the medicine. There is a list of healing Seeds/Scriptures under different medicines to take for different ailments– feed on them several times a day, meditating by repeating them over and over again to yourself out loud. The medicine itself will work if you will get it inside you.

 “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” Romans10:17ESV

Church, remember that it takes time for medicine to work. Most people give natural medicine a lot of time and patience and money to work. They take the prescription back for refills and more refills. They are diligent about it. They don’t just take one dose and expect a miracle. Keep taking God’s medicine. Give it time to work.

D)God has different medicine in same bottle or bottles for different ailments in our lives .

Remember the Bottle is the Bible but in any Bible we have different Bibles – the New International Version, English Standard version, New King James Version or Chinese Bible or Hebrew Bible, Or German  Bible as well as different books of the Bible. So different versions of the Bible but the inside is the same. That is, the medicine is the word of God. Different word of God applies to different circumstances and ailments that brings a breakthrough with our soulish area – mind, emotions and will then the body comes in line with God’s healing powers! Our spiritman needs that revival first to bring stability back into our lives of thankfulness.

1)Stomach ailments –medicine is a little wine to take then                                                                                             The evidence from the Scriptures indicates that Timothy had either an ulcer or had problems with his stomach due to some other ailment. Timothy had “frequent ailments,” either from the stresses that he was under as a pastor, or from the severe persecution that he was facing from the Jews. We do know that some were despising Timothy because of his young age, perhaps, in their opinion, too young to be a pastor. This may explain why Paul wrote, “Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity” (1 Tim 4:12)..                                                                                                                                                           1 Timothy 5:22-24 “Do not be too quick in the laying on of hands and thereby share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure. 23Stop drinking only water and use a little wine instead, because of your stomach and your frequent ailments. 24The sins of some men are obvious, going ahead of them to judgment; but the sins of others do not surface until later.”                                                                                          

That doesn’t mean that Paul condones drinking of course. In the New Testament the wine in Holy Communion represents the blood shed that has victory over sin and sickness. Claim your healing in Holy Communion

2) Crushed spirit, Depression- Medicine is a Joyful Heart  

Proverbs 17:22 “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”

Science has proven that how a person feels in life is directly related to their health. As the person feels, the typically body follows. It’s as the old Proverb says “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he” (Prov 237a), and so when we are depressed, under great stress, and feel hopeless, that’s how we are going to be in reality, and it absolutely negatively impacts the persons’ health, as the end of the above proverbs says that “a crushed spirit dries up the bones,” and is certainly a detriment to his or her health. However you deal with life, it deals with you in the same manner. That’s why a believer’s joyful heart is just like medicine.

3)For the sick and Paralyzed man called Aeneas(Acts9:32-34)- Medicine as a sign-Ask Jesus for healing                                                                                           

“But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.” Matthew 9:12

4)Wounded man – Medicine is oil and wine(Wine also in Holy Communion)                                                                        “He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him.” Luke 10:34

5) Sickness that comes from sins committed-Confession, repentance, renounce and anoint head with Oil and prayer offered                                                                                                                                                                                  “And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.” James 5:15

James indicates that healing can come if a person prays in faith, and the Lord Himself will raise Him up. This destroys the false idea that we can heal anyone. It is God alone Who heals and it is only His prerogative to do so, but if there was some sin involved, which may sometimes be the case, James says “if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.” That is obviously predicated on the assumption that the man who was sick, if he had sinned, would have asked for forgiveness.

6) Nations need healing                                                                                                                                                          “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land” 2 Chronicles 7:14

“Through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.” Revelation 22:2

This verse speaks of the New Jerusalem and the healing of the nations, perhaps not from an actual illness, but from their previous disobedience. the prophecy of Psalm 86:9 which said that “All the nations you have made shall come and worship before you, O Lord, and shall glorify your name,” and where the Apostle John foretold that “All nations will come and worship you, for your righteous acts have been revealed” (Rev 15:4b).

7)Loving Discipline –God’s Hand on His child

“For he wounds, but he binds up; he shatters, but his hands heal.” Job 5:18

Job is writing about the fact that the one who God reproves will be blessed, “therefore despise not the discipline of the Almighty” (Job 5:17), because He wounds in order to heal, just like it says, “the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb 4:12). The difference being, God cuts in order to heal, so the above verse is dealing with the loving discipline of God, so we know that “the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives” (Heb 12:6).

8)Healing from demonic oppression

Acts 10:38 (ESV) “how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.”

“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4

What demons could do in Bible times, they can still do today. Just because we cannot see their activities, does not mean that they aren’t there and functioning. Demons are fallen angels who followed Satan’s rebellion from heaven and are organized under Satan in hierarchical levels known as rulers, authorities, powers, and spiritual forces of evil.

The best weapon we have in consistently defeating Satan is effective and constant discipleship. God freely provides the spiritual armor necessary to stand against Satan and to unveil his dastardly schemes: truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, the Bible and prayer.

The Armor of God-10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6:10-12NIV

“You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!” James 2:19

And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Rev20:10

How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! 13 You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; ….I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” 15 But you are brought down to the realm of the dead, to the depths of the pit. Isaiah14:12-15


Physicians are a great blessing to us and our society, and the points of these verses are that, how one feels about life, affects how one feels, our emotions are affected, but when we know our God as our Greatest Physician that doesn’t change with time (Malachi3:6), we have the best Doctor in town and the best Medicine. He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds and those who are crushed in spirit. He will disciple us, His children because of His great love for us. Where there is no discipline, there is no love…only apathy, so the opposite of love is not hate; it is indifference.

Medicine need to be taken according to clear directions labelled on the Bottle . The Bottles(Coming in different shapes and sizes) being the Bible and the Medicine is the Word of God that has Spiritual Power.

In God’s bottles, you have:-                                                                                                                                              A) God’s Medicine

B)Application of God’s medicine to receive healing                                                                                                   

C)His prescription on the Bottles                                                                                                 

D)Different Medicines in the Bottles          

There are many different kinds of ailments but one Lord Jesus Christ that heals through His Word, in His name and Power of His Holy Spirit. Let us now seek our Lord Jesus Christ for our healing.

Church, where do we stand with our Lord? Have we been disappointed that things don’t go our way and things have been shut for us? Hang on and continue to believe that God heals. He works miracles, if you allow yourselves to be changed and take His medicine.

Let us Commit this time in prayers and then open this time for prayer

God is here to touch those who sick after Him and are sick. Is there Someone with sharp right side back pain and tooth ache, please reach out to God now and ask Him to heal you and give thanks and praise to His name!