Sunday service, Erlo Stegen, 10 Jul 2016
Wedding of Sebastian Merlo and Johanna van Vuuren (some photos below – more to come)
1 John 2:17
Whoever does the will of God abides forever
Marriage should start with God. Not according to man’s will but God’s will. Of course, once you’re married you must abide in the will of God. In other words you must continually abide in God’s will. So that your marriage will be a pleasure to God and a blessing to the people. We must abide in God’s will forever. Even here on earth already and not just in eternity. It’s like a wedding ring, it’s round with no beginning or end.
It’s a pity that there are people who say it’s God’s will to get married but after a few years they forsake that. That’s a tragedy.
One man asked Rev Stegen to ask a girl whether she would be prepared to get married to him. She prayed earnestly and then came back to Rev Stegen and said she had a dream in which she saw a beautiful vase, with two half crown coins inside. She took them and then these two half crowns melted together into one crown. What a wonderful picture of marriage. But today they are parted. I don’t know if they would be able to enter heaven, because they are liars, they didn’t keep their vows.
Jesus says in John 15:10, “If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love”.
You have died and your life is hid with Christ in God (Col 3:3).
If we abide in Him everything will go well.
How do we abide in Him? By doing His will. Keeping and doing what He had commanded us to do, for example:
Do not be anxious about anything (Philippians 4:6). He must increase, I must decrease (John 3:30).
You will keep Him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You because he trusts in you (Is 26:3).
Jesus was God Himself, yet He never did anything without asking His Heavenly Father.
See what example Jesus is to one and all of humility, obedience and love.
Moses said to Him, if your presence go not with us do not send us from here (Ex 33:15).
If Jesus lived in such obedience with His Father, how much more are we in need to do it!
If we do the will of God we do not die but pass into eternity.
Our text says whoever, that’s an invitation to each and everyone, every culture and background without distinction. With God there is no segregation.
The choice is ours to do the will of God. The question is, am I going to do the will of God for the rest of my life?
Not a god of our own imagination. A god who is like you think him to be, is the idiot of your imagination.
God’s thoughts are not our thoughts, neither His ways our ways, for as high as the heaven is above the earth so is His ways above our ways (Is 55:8-9).
To do His will we must know His will. Only then can we do His will.
The Bible says, I write to you young men because the Word of God abide in you (1John 2:14). We will be more than conquerors if we abide in His will. He must increase and we must decrease (John 3:30).
That one prays, create in me a clean heart o God and renew a right spirit in me (Ps 51:10).
Rom 12:2 says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
How can a young married man keep himself pure? By keeping God’s word. I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against You (Ps 119:9-10).
All things will pass away. All desires will pass away, but only His will and His Word abides forever (1John 2:17; Is 40:8; 1Pet 1:25).
We read in Col 3:1-4, “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”.
When we die we cannot take anything of this earth along but only what we have invested in eternity and what we have done for Him. Whether we’ve remained in Him or not. Wherever we’ve built on the rock or not and whether we’ve built with precious stones, gold and silver, or wood, hay and stubble (1Cor 3:12-14).
We read in Matthew 6:19-21, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”
May God give you His divine Agape love. We must be able to recognise His speaking to us. And the Bible will make it clear whether you’re doing His will or not.
Those who obey not the Gospel will suffer eternal punishment and it will start here already.
There’s a story of two friends who were walking through the desert. At some point they discussed something which turned into an argument. The one eventually slapped the other through the face. The one who got slapped didn’t retaliate but bent down and wrote in the sand, “today my best friend slapped me through the face”.
Then they got to a pool of water. The one that got slapped went in to wash himself but got stuck in the mire and started to drown. The other immediately jumped in and saved him. After he was saved he took his carving knife and wrote on a stone, “today my best friend saved my life”. His friend asked him why he wrote in the sand that he was hurt but on a rock that his life was saved. He answered that if we are hurt and write it in the sand, the winds of forgiveness can erase it, but if someone does something good we must write it in stone that nothing can erase it. In that way bitterness can never grow in your heart.
Paul writes in Philippians 3:13-14, “I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus”
Never forget that love covers a multitude of sins (1Pet 4:8). So that you’re not like the people of this world who uncovers a multitude of sins.