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Crown of Rejoicing (1 Thessalonians 2:19)

Sermon on 4 Apr 2021 by Ps Justin

1 Thessalonians 2:19 - “After all, what gives us hope and joy, and what will be our proud reward and crown as we stand before our Lord Jesus when he returns? It is you!”


These are the topics for our new series - The crown of life, The crown of glory, The crown of righteousness and the The crown of rejoicing.


Imperishable crown:

1 Corinthians 9:24-25 - “Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize.”


This is our 2020 new year message theme, to run the race to win the heavenly prize. In a race, everyone runs but only one will get the prize. In the world, people will compete but to us, it is an imperishable crown.


Shortly after, the pandemic hit and we had a lockdown. The church faced a great challenge but thanks to God, we could hold on to this verse and run the race with determination, endurance and faith. Many would dress up on Sunday Services at home, watching the online service. We don’t have big equipment to do recording but the recording was so well done and some big churches even asked us to do their recordings. They were shocked when our equipment was so mediocre. It took us a while to get used to the changes. When Phase 3 entered, we could come back and preach face to face. This is the imperishable crown that God is rewarding us. The grace is so sufficient.


Many people get frightened by evangelism. When Jesus resurrected, he told every Christian that we have to go and preach the gospel and make disciples, not only carrying the Cross but also abiding. We are all pre seasoned in evangelism. We are called to share good news. We must live up the good news. Our conduct and speech draws people to Jesus or draws people away from Jesus.


1 Thessalonians 2:19 - “After all, what gives us hope and joy, and what will be our proud reward and crown as we stand before our Lord Jesus when he returns? It is you!”


1 Thessalonians 2:20 - “Yes, you are our pride and joy.”


Pointers:


1. The crown of rejoicing is a crown for the evangelist


It is a crown for people like Apostle Paul, for people who not only reach out but through their living. We must live according to the Cross. To preach about the good news is easy but to preach with power is not easy.


Acts 4:33 - “The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God’s great blessing was upon them all.”


You must live the Cross then you can preach the Cross with power. When we save one soul, heaven rejoices. This is wonderful in the eye of the Lord.


Luke 15:10 - “In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels when even one sinner repents.””


Luke 24:47 - “It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’”


1 Corinthians 11:26 - “For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are announcing the Lord’s death until he comes again.”


Acts 1:8 - “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.””


2. Crown of rejoicing - the reward for the soul-winner


We want to preach that we want to follow what Apostle Paul is doing.


He is bold and courageous, doing it with a pure motive, to please God, is like a caring mother and an encouraging father and he also lives out the gospel.


We don’t please men. If we please men, we aren’t worthy to be a servant of God. We must live out the gospel. He encourages the disciples that he got in. God moves mightily in them. Between life and death, choose life. It is a blessing.


Adopt the way of the Cross in order for us to share the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. We need to live our life as a crucified Christian. We make sacrifices everyday. We sacrifice our pride and anger. Every morning when we come to the altar, we kneel before God. We live in a way that we are lowly and humble. We need to have a meek spirit then we can inherit the earth.


Matthew 11:29 - “Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”


Matthew 5:3 - ““God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.”


If we haven’t been going out to share the joy to others, we won’t be able to experience this joy too.


Proverbs 11:30 - “The seeds of good deeds become a tree of life; a wise person wins friends.”


Romans 10:14-15 - “But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!””


Acts 1:8 - “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.””


If you are not there to preach, others cannot hear about Jesus Christ. It is a tremendous blessing to bless people so that we can inherit the blessing. If we want to inherit the blessing, be a blessing. If you want great grace upon you, you must live a life adopting the Cross. When you live out a life demonstrating the power of God, great grace will be upon you.


Amen.

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