10 Jan 2021

Bring It Home [Deuteronomy 6:4-9]


The home front is the missing piece in global missions. We often think that we can only be missional when we go overseas, but missions begins at home. We need to "give out the gospel" at home. This sermon helps you with the 5W1H- who, what, where, when, why & how of doing just that. We also need to "live out the gospel" at home. This is harder, but perhaps even more important. Our children watch our lives more than they listen to what we say with our lips. Actions speak louder than words. And parenting is thus a humbling and searching journey. We need to therefore drink in the gospel, live out the gospel & give out the gospel. Missional Church begins with me. Missional Church means we bring it home. It is not just an activity or an event. It is our way of life.


Sermon Transcript

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So, let's dive right in alright, to the message this morning. And we are really looking at this 4-part mini -series on ‘The Missional Church’. The pastors, the shepherds of Gospel Light would like to encourage God's people that we can still have joy and the privilege of service, even during these pandemic months.

Now, we began with a statement last week. We said, “We can't do church like we used to …”, because we can't gather in that big full capacity like we used to anymore.” We've all got to wear masks. We can't sing. We can't have lunch. We can't do church like we used to, but hey, it ain't broke because we need to be reminded we can still be the church God wants us to.

And the important thing is to distinguish between form and function. A lot of things about the form has to change. We have to wear masks. We can't sing. We can't have lunch. A lot of form has disappeared, but the function remains. The reason for the existence of the church doesn't change.

You see, we know that God uses His Gospel. The word, ‘Gospel’ means the Good News. The Good News of Jesus Christ, dying and rising to save us from our sins, in order to reconcile sinful men to the Holy God. God uses this message, this Gospel to call out His people.

He sends messengers into this world, bearing this precious message, so that when more men and women hear this Good News, they repent and believe in Jesus Christ. And together, we are the church. So God uses the Gospel to form His church. Likewise, God uses His church to do something for the Gospel. God uses the church in order to live out the Gospel and to give out the Gospel. In other words, God uses the people of God to demonstrate the Gospel in our lives, and to declare the Gospel with our lives.

And so the plan and the purpose of God for His Church is so that the Gospel might be made known to many more people, and that more people would come to a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ.
So this is our mission, Gospel Light's vision is to be leading generations into a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ, when we live out and when we give out the Gospel.

This is your mission! Now, we can't sing like we used to. We can't have lunch like we used to. We can't gather in a big group like we used to, but this still is relevant for us. And this must still be our mission and purpose.

Now, I know many of you now switch off because you say, “Pastor, this is not for me lah! I've got a job, I've got a family, I can't go overseas to tell people about Jesus. I'm not like Jim Elliot, and all these great men. I, I can't go. I've got to take care of things here.” I say, “Hold on a minute! Who says that you must go overseas to fulfill this mission.” You don't have to, because mission begins at home.

And when I say, “Mission begins at home, I'm not even talking about Singapore necessarily.” I'm sure we want to make a difference in our country and reach our fellow countrymen. But when I say, “Mission begins at home, I literally mean at home - in your family.” You see, that's why so many of us don't live missional lives because we don't realize that mission really begins right at home.

Look at some of the Scripture verses with me. We read about God speaking about Abraham. He says, “Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him … ” [Gen 18:17-19] So there is a grand global vision for this one man, Abraham.

But notice that the Bible goes on to say, “…. For I have chosen him that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord.” Now, there's a global vision, but it begins at home. That Abraham will teach, will lead and will command his children and his household well, to keep the way of the Lord.

Now, this missionality, this ministry, this teaching at home, again is repeated in Deuteronomy, chapter 6:7, “You shall teach them diligently to your children …” We read that earlier, “ … and shall talk of them when you sit in your house”, and so on and so forth. You've got to teach your children.

And then let me give you a third reference in Acts, chapter 2:39, “For the promise of forgiveness is for you and for your children and for all who are far off.” You realize that 3-part mentioned - to you, and then to your children, and then to those who are far off. So often we think it is from us, to those who are far off, and we miss that middle part. But the missional life, according to the Scripture does not neglect the home-front. In fact, I would say, “Missional living begins at home.”

So this morning, as we look into this series on the missional church, we are reminded last week that “It all begins with me”. It all begins with a right walk with God. You can't be missional if you're not walking right with God. You can't be abounding in fruit if you're not abiding in Jesus. So the first thing is that we need to realize during this pandemic, we need to walk right with God, we need to work on our roots in order to have good fruit.

But then, the second part is where we apply the missional life in and that is in our homes, we got to “Bring It Home”. So this morning, I want to just speak about how we can be missional at home. I'm going to neglect some of you, because I'm going to just be able to focus on how we teach our children.

Some of you are not married, some of you do not have children, I understand that. But perhaps the principles you learn here might be helpful to you, even as you will apply them in your workplace, in your schools, and even with your other family and friends, alright. So let's acknowledge that, first of all, it's got to be about how we raise our children and our household in the Gospel.
[1] Give Out The Gospel
So it's very simple, I'm just going to deal with this - how can we first of all give out the Gospel at home? I want to be missional. It means leading generations into a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ. And it begins by giving them the Gospel. They can't be saved, they can't know God without the Gospel.

So parents, fathers, mothers, we've got to give them the Gospel. So how do we look at this? I'm just going to deal with it in a - who, what, where, when, why, and how approach. Can't be simpler than that, right! Who, what, where, when, why and how.

[A] Who
So who should be giving the Gospel? Well, most of us will think, “Pastor lor or children ministry lor or Sundays …” And and some of you are very nervous that during these months, there is no children ministry, there is no Sunday school. But do you realize that whilst the pastors, the Sunday school teachers are can be helpful at times, they are not the ones that God has entrusted with the Gospel for your children.

So often, we think that we can send our children to piano lessons, swimming class, and therefore also for Bible studies. But the Bible is absolutely clear that, “You shall teach them diligently to your children.” [Deut 6:7] So the Bible says, “Who is the OIC for teaching the Bible to your kids?” You, as parents! And we need to understand that.

In fact, the Bible is very specific in Ephesians, chapter 6:4, “Fathers do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Now, this is interesting, because earlier on in Ephesians 6, I believe in verse 1, it says, “Parents …” Now it seems a specific male reference in the Greek word - fathers.

Now, in my family, my wife runs the show for many things - what groceries to buy, how clean the house should be, where this furniture … she … she makes many of these decisions. She handles many things for us, maybe even paying of a lot of the bills and so on. But there's one thing that I think I can't say, “You take it!”, and that is the instruction of the Lord for my children.

Fathers got to do this! Fathers cannot say, “Oh, I've got to work! I've got to bring food to the table. You know, all I need to do is to fetch my kids here and there, do all the chauffeuring and bringing back the bacon and so on.” You can't because the Bible says, “Fathers, you have to do this job. You are to teach your children.”

Now, we are thankful again for Sunday school ministry, but the ‘who’ in the Bible is very clear - fathers. How many of you are fathers? Wah! This one jialat eh! How many of you are fathers? Can I see by a show of hands? Alright, can you read this verse with me? One … ah! You can't read, I'm sorry. I forgot church cannot be what it used to be right, or what used to do! But read this in your heart as I say this again, alright.

“Fathers …”, all of you who raised their hands and those who are at home, “… do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” [Eph 6:4] The word there is to put God's truth into their minds - nouthesia.

[B] What
Now, what are you to teach? The ‘who’ is the father, the ‘who’ is the … if I may say, “Also the parents. Let's not neglect that the mother can also play a part.” But what is it that we need to give? We need to give them the instruction of the Lord, the teaching, the putting into the mind the truth of the Lord.

I just want to caution that we must be careful, we do not raise mini Pharisees at home. There's a way of teaching the Bible to force them and make them and lead them to become Pharisees. Pharisees who are self-righteous, legalistic. Pharisees who are moralistic. In other words, they … they think that the entire Christian faith is about - how I am going to prove I'm better than someone else, because I obey more of the law.

Now, we must be careful not to just therefore teach them morals and the 10 commandments and say, “You should do this and you should do that.” We must teach them the main emphasis of the Bible. Let me tell you, “The main emphasis of the Bible is not the law.” “Urggh! Are you saying something heretical?”

Well, you know why the law is given? The law is not the main thing. The main thing is the Gospel. The main thing is how God would bring about salvation to a sinful man. The law is given only to enhance and to help us see how sinful we really are. So when you teach the Bible faithfully, you will not only teach them the law of God, you teach them the law of God in order to help them understand the Gospel of God, the salvation plan of God.

So please don't just teach your kids - do this, do that. Help your kids realize God had done it all for us in Jesus Christ. Tell them about God's promise of a Savior in Genesis, chapter 3. Tell them about the birth of Jesus in Matthew, chapter 1. Tell them about the great end, the consummation of all things when Jesus returns for us.

And help them see that entire Bible is about God's plan to save man. And help your kids realize their sin that they may humble themselves, repent and believe in Jesus. Don't raise mini, moralistic, proud and arrogant self-righteous Pharisees. Help your kids see their sin, that they may turn to Jesus Christ. That's what the Bible is about. So gospelize your children, that's so important!

[C] Where
Now, where do we do this? Where do we give out the Gospel? For some families, they say, “Oh, we need to have a special room, we call this the family altar.” I don't know what you put on that altar. I don't know what you put on the table. But you have a family altar, every time must go there, and this is the instruction time.

I think it's a good thing to have a regular place, but the Bible tells me that. “When I teach my children, the Word of God, the teachings of God, “I can teach them everywhere.” [Deut 6:7] “When I sit in my house, when I walk by the way, when I lie down, and when I rise.” [Deut 6:7-8] You can teach your kids even when you're sleeping, you know? I mean, not that you're falling asleep lah, but when you're lying down, when you're just resting, you can teach your kids.

I always remember that scene when I was with my son, Shawn, when we were in Australia. Matthias was sleeping with mummy, I was sleeping with Shawn. We had not slept yet, we are just lying there and we talked about the Gospel, we talked about God. I always remember that scene and I say, “Yeah, that's fine. I don't have to be taking a ruler and whacking him before he will listen. It can be at any point of time, at anywhere.”

So where can you teach your kids? Anywhere. In fact, I think most of the time, the best teaching moments are not when you're seated down in the classroom. The best teaching times are when you're out there at East Coast Park, or you are drenched wet at Sentosa, when you are out there with your kids, because those may just be the most teachable moments you can seize upon.

So a parent needs to be always ready to give the Gospel to your kids at the most appropriate times. Everywhere.

[D] When
When? Every time, anytime. But let me just say this, “When we say any time, sometimes it means no time.” I know how that works, right? “O Pastor! Thank you, I'll teach my kids by and by lah! When I have a time lah!” And often times it becomes no time. It becomes you never get to do it.

So whilst we say, “The Bible does say you can teach the kids anywhere, and any time. I think it's also wise to have some regular times.” Okay, just to keep yourself regular, and faithful and that's what I try to do with my kids. We don't do that like every single day, but we do try to have a regular time where it's a short session, nothing long. My kids don't want it long, I can understand why. This is a boring dad.

But we would have short times of going through the Bible, we use a picture Bible. And the advantage, I think of going through the Bible in a systematic way is that they get to have a better idea of what this whole book is about. When you teach your kids by and by, when you see a butterfly, you talk about God. When you see the … the rain, you talk about this and that. It may be just bits and pieces, they can't frame it together. But when you teach the Bible from the beginning to the end, over and over again, they get a better idea.

Just this week, I was reading the Bible with my kids. And we … we hit a story about God's promise to David. And you know that story, without too much details, I just want to say that as I, as we read this, Mathias, my second son, he says, “Oh, really ah! The whole Bible is about Jesus.” Now, it's something for me to say it to them, but it's quite another thing for him to say, “Oh, I see it now, the Bible is all about Jesus!”

Now, that will not take place if you're only teaching them on random, occasional times. So I think it is helpful that fathers, you will set apart time. Okay, set apart time. I know you're busy, but then now most of us can work at home, right? You're busy, you should still set apart time to teach your kids.

Okay, so who? Parents.

What? The Word of God, in particular the Gospel.

Where? Anywhere.

When? Anytime and at regular times.

Who, what, where, when, why. Why do I bother to give the Gospel to my kids? I can't save my kids. I can't change their heart. That's true! But then the Bible also tells me, “So faith comes from hearing and hearing through the Word of God.” [Romans 10:17] This is my best human effort to give my kids an opportunity to come to faith. I give them the Word of God. I pray for them. I give them the Word of God and I think this is what a parent must do.

What profits a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul? What profits your kid if you gave them the best mathematics tuition, English class, they score well, they get to good schools, they have a good career, but they end up losing their soul? What profits a man? I don't think there's anything more important than to give them the Word of God. And to lead them to a journey of faith, by God's grace, that they may know the True and Living God.

[E] How
Who, what, where, when, why, the last one is how. Many, many things to say about the how, but I've only time to emphasize this one word, “You shall teach them ‘diligently’.” [Deut 6:7] The Hebrew word actually means repeatedly. So you shall teach them repeatedly.

In other words, it's not something you do once off, it's something you've got to do over and over and over again. It takes effort to do that! So that the Word of God may go right in to their hearts and minds. You know, I know it takes time, it takes effort, it's not easy. But I made a decision some time earlier in my life, that I will do it with my kids and I'm thankful for that decision. And I tell you, it begins with a decision on your part.

Acknowledging this is going to take time, you rather have your own time, I know. Fathers, I know you. You like to hide in our own caves. You like to do our own things. But there are some times you need to come out from your cave. After you train your kungfu, you need to come out and use your kungfu. So please come out from your cave regularly to teach your kids repeatedly, diligently. We need to give out the Gospel at home.

You know, I think God is merciful. When He gives us children, He does not give us a baby born into this world who is capable of being or who is capable of becoming an adult within two days. I mean, can God do something like that? Can. Once the baby pops out, you feed it lots of milk, it drinks lots of, lots of milk and overnight it becomes a grown man. That will not be hard for God to arrange.

But God does not give us fully grown adults in two days. It takes 20, 20 years - two decades. You say, “Why?” I think one of the reasons is so that the kid has no choice, but to depend on the parents to feed him or her, not just milk and food, but the Word of God. So please take advantage of this 20 years, your kids will have with you.

After 20 years, the kids, we say in Chinese, “翅膀长硬了” [chì bǎng zhǎng yìng le], the wings become hard and stiff and strong and he will fly away. And you have no chance to tell him about Jesus like you used to anymore. But whilst he is still with you, while she is still with you, give out the Gospel to your children. And excel at doing that! Work at doing that!

You know in your work, you would do your very best to learn how to up skill, up tool yourself, I would say, “As a parent, learn how to share the Gospel in the Bible effectively with your children.”

Okay, this is a segue to the advert. Join us at CEP on every Saturday for this next three weeks. We just had one yesterday, but join us for the next three weeks on how to do a Bible study. It's super simple, 15 minutes of 3, 3 sessions of 15 minutes. We have Q&A after that if you like, but I hope that would encourage you. I'm going to provide you free resources online that will help you whether you're mother at home, or a teacher or a lawyer or office worker. Doesn't matter, this is something simple you can pick up tool yourself with, so that you can be effectively giving out the Gospel at home. Don't waste these years, God has given you with your children.

A father had promised his two kids that he will bring them to the Circus. But he got a call on the phone from his business partner and the mom, the wife knew exactly what this is all about. He would have to go down to the office to talk about their business plan, and … and therefore not be able to bring the kids to the circus.

So the mom says, “Well, what time do you have to go to the office?” The father says, “I'm not going to the office.” “But why?” “But I want to bring my kids to the circus.” And she said, “Dear, you know that the circus will come back again, right?” “I know, but their childhood will not.” And I think there's wisdom in that little story. Yeah, you can have plenty of time you say - next time and so on, but their childhood only comes once. And you will not have the same influence in their lives as you may have, so please give out the Gospel.

Now, for all that I've shared - who, what, when, why, it's all about giving out the Gospel. For all that I've shared, I say, “That's the easy part.” I say, “Like that easy ah!” Let me tell you what's the hard part, okay, you know what's the hard part coming up next?
[2] Live Out The Gospel
To be missional at home, we must not only be giving out the Gospel, this is the hard part, alright? We must live out the Gospel, you guys are smart, you guys have learned well, you must live out the Gospel.
I left it here so that you understand. This is I think, the main thing because nothing turns a kid off, like a father who preaches like a pastor but lives a life as a hypocrite.

Isn't it true? Nothing turns a kid … I do not know why, but it seems to me that sometimes kids raised in a Christian home can be very angry with God. And they can be very resistant towards the Gospel. I wonder is it because they have been stumbled by people who … who behave exactly like Pharisees. They teach so well, but they live so terribly.

So this is the hard part, parents. I want to remind you that the Bible commands us not only to give out the Gospel, but we must live out the Gospel. We must live out a life of godliness because of the Gospel.
You see, that's what Deuteronomy 6:5-7 is all about. It says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul and with all your might …”

It's about passion and it's about obedience. It's about what you do. “… And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart and then you shall teach them diligently to your children.” You can't quite separate the two.

I had to learn primary school mathematics for the past two, three years at least. Because I need to teach my son who is preparing for his PSLE. Now, I never learned those things before. I mean, for those of you who are my age ah, when you did mathematics, I'm sure you never needed, need … you never needed to draw boxes.

That's a crazy concept, but okay is effective, is useful for some questions, because otherwise I only always turn to algebra to solve them. But they can't use algebra, so I got to learn a methodology in mathematics to teach my kids. But you know, after PSLE is over, I throw it away already. I don't want to think about how to draw boxes anymore until Matthias. It's Matthias' turn, maybe I'll get Shawn to help him then. I've done my part, gotta pass it on, right.

But when it comes to the Bible realities about loving God and knowing His love, this is not something I learn to teach and then throw away. Teaching the Bible has got to be a part of my life. It's got to be in my life. The Word of God has to be in my heart, and in my life in a real way, before I can teach them to my kids. It's got to be me.

And my friends, I think this is so wise because God knows and we know that actions speak louder than words. Say all you want, but your kids actually watch your life more than anything else. You know, when Jesus taught His disciples, not only did He teach them to love one another, He did it! He washed their feet! And right up till today, we can remember that story, even though we were not there, because actions speak louder than words. God says, “I love you.” Well, He proved it when He sent His Son, Jesus Christ to die for us.

And if we want our kids to understand the Gospel, we've got to live that out. If we want to teach our kids to love God, we've got to live that out. Your kids are watching you all the time. They watch the way you deal with people, you relate to people. They watch the way you spend your money. They watch the way you prioritize or not prioritize the things of God. They watch the way you behave.

They may not always be listening to your instructions. “Hey! Go and bathe”, they still go and play their toys. They don't always listen to you, I know, but they are always watching you. And like I said nothing turns a kid away from God, more than someone who says he loves God, but doesn't. But nothing impacts a kid's life more than when the father and the mother genuinely loves God. I absolutely believe this.

Now, parenting is therefore very difficult, okay. Parenting is not just going out there, earning some money and bringing some food home. Is not just sending your kids to school, it's about your whole life. It's about your whole life! And it causes us to be broken and humble. We need to turn to God for forgiveness so often.

But let me just say this, “Parents, I don't think parenting is about parenting out of perfection too.” We will never be perfect. We will never be good enough to be that perfect model for our kids. But I think we need to be that humble model. We need to … we need to be broken before our kids. We need to say sorry when we are wrong. And we need to be a people who sincerely strive forwards. That's all. That's what parenting is all about.

Now, John Piper he said this, “99% of the actions you perform that influence your children are unpremeditated actions …” You don't think about them, you just do. It's natural. “… There are hundreds, perhaps 1000s of these kinds of actions every day. Your facial expressions; your posture; your tone of voice; your gestures; your responses to the dog and the weather; and a slipping clutch and a dripping faucet or the tap and the late spouse and the TV news; and 100 other spontaneous expressions of who you really are. 99% of the behavior that influences your child is unpremeditated.”

What is he's trying to say? He's saying, “You can't fake it before your kids.” You know something, you can fake it in church, it's not hard. Church service, one, two hours, you can be Mr. Nice Guy, but when you go home, you can't. You will behave the way you really are. 99% of the actions you do, will be just a natural outflow of who you are.

So if this morning, you hear God's Word and you say, “I need to be a better parent. I need to do better at home.” I say, “It's not about acting it out. It's not about pretending to be a better follower of Jesus Christ at home. It is humbling yourself and saying, “Lord, my parenting experience has shown me up. And I do not want to fake it, but I really want to grow. I really want to be more like Jesus.”’

And so I bring you back to what we were looking at last week - missional living begins with me. What does it mean? It means I want to grow in a right relationship with Jesus Christ and I devote myself to SPACE [Scripture, Prayer, Adversity, Community, Elders/Examples] I want to create SPACE in my life, for the Holy Spirit to change me into Christ's likeness.

So if you've forgotten that message, maybe this morning it is an impetus for you to go back and revisit it.

[A] Drink In The Gospel
But it all comes back to this fundamental premise, we … we have in this church, and that is, we must first be a people who are regularly drinking in the Gospel. We must first be a people who are regularly knowing about God's love and His Gospel, in the pages of the Bible.

We pray that what we read in the Bible is not mere theory in our head, but it will be infused in our hearts. It is incorporated into our being. We are drinking in, drinking in the Gospel. And the Gospel community is helping me drink that in.

[B] Live Out The Gospel
So that when this is really internalized, God's Spirit will use it to change me and grow me, so that now I can live out the Gospel.

[C] Give Out The Gospel
I can be a man who loves God with all my heart, soul, mind and strength as best as I can. Then, I'm in the right position to effectively give out the Gospel at home. You see that? This is the goal, that we will be a Gospel conversant and Gospel-saturated people. So that our kids may see, so that our kids may hear.

So the missional church, what is it about? It's about fulfilling the Great Commission. It's about living out and giving out the Gospel. It's about leading generations into a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ. But it begins with me drinking in the Gospel, so that I can then bring it home, to live out and to give out the Gospel.

Well, if you have forgotten all that I have preached or you have been sleeping and say “Wah! You talk so long? Can you give me a summary?” I say, “Yes.” Let me give you a summary, and amazingly, I read about this statement from a father, I don't even know who he is, alright. He said these words about parenting and I think it's so appropriate. Let me read this to you.

He said, “My family's all grown and the kids are all gone. But if I had it, if I had to do it all over again, this is what I would do: I would love my wife more in front of my children …” I forgot to say this, but this statement reminds me that I should.

One of the ways you show Gospel living in your life is the way you love or you respect your spouse. Because that is meant to be a demonstration of the Gospel, isn't it, Ephesians 5? The way you treat your spouse will be the main thing, one of the main things your children would observe. When the chips are down, would you still love, would you still respect? Would you still believe the Gospel? Or is this Gospel just something academic to you? They will see that. And nothing would stumble your kids more than perhaps a broken home, and yet nothing would bless your kids more than a loving home.

Well, the father says, “If I had to do it all over again, this is what I would do: I would love my wife more in front of my children. I would laugh with my children more at our mistakes and our joys. I would listen more, even to the littlest child. I would be more honest about my own weaknesses, never pretending perfection. I would pray differently for my family, instead of focusing on them, I'll focus on me. I would do more things together with my children. I would encourage them more and bestow more praise. I would pay more attention to little things; like deeds and words of thoughtfulness. And then finally, if I had to do it all over again, I would share God more intimately with my family, every ordinary thing that happened in every ordinary day, I will use to direct them to God.”

Good summary! This guy said it in two minutes what I had to say in 40 minutes. But perhaps God could use either to help you live out God's mission at home. I pray pandemic or no pandemic, Gospel Light will be a Gospel-centered church - drinking in, living out, giving out the Gospel. This is why we are here. May God bless each of you richly. Let's bow for word of prayer together.

Thank you for listening attentively. I know it's not an easy message in some way, because it's very convicting, it's very humbling. And let me say, “It's not just for you, it's for me.” So easy to play hypocrite at home. So easy just to say, “I've taught the Bible, what's more to do!” But I believe like marriage, parenting is used by God to be an environment that forces us to realize our need to grow to be more like Jesus.

This morning, instead of focusing on the ‘how to’s’ in parenting, can I direct your attention to your being - who you really are in God? Maybe this is a time for us to confess our sins before God. This is the time for us to pray and say, “Lord, help me to be serious about growing, help me to make choices about S P A C E.”

Maybe this is a time for some of us to be praying right now for our children, that they will not be stumbled by our lives, but God would have mercy to turn them to Jesus. Would you also at this time, pray for our whole church that we will be a missional people? Don't waste our time. Don't … don't, please, Christianity is not just about gathering on Sunday mornings. We are deeply thankful for the ability to meet up on Sundays, but that is only just so that we might live out and give out the Gospel from Monday to Saturday. That is where the real game is. That is where the real spiritual arena of battle is.

So this morning, would you be still and bring all this to God in prayer? In your heart right now, ask God to give you a heart that would comprehend more and more the love of God. So that you may then be empowered by the Spirit to love Him with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, to keep His Word in your heart, and to obey Him.

Maybe some of you are here with us for the first time. I repeat what I said in the message, “The Bible is not mainly about the law of God as if these are things you try to do to gain favor with God. The Bible is really about God's plan in sending His Son, for sinners like you and me. And Jesus paid for all our sins on the cross, He rose in victory. And therefore the call and the appeal and the great command of the Bible, is that men and women everywhere will repent from their sin and turn to Jesus Christ to be saved.” So this morning, can I give you the Gospel? And I pray you will receive this Gospel. You'll repent and believe in Jesus Christ.

Father, thank You for this morning that we can hear Your Word. Bless Your people as we contemplate these realities. Give us godly homes. Lord, bless our homes. Help us to be the parents You want us to be. Have mercy upon our children. And again, we pray for friends and guests who are here. We ask that You too will lead them to salvation and life. For these we will be absolutely grateful. Thank You for Jesus, Your Son. We ask this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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