Spirit, soul and body(24) – The 3rd lecture on – Spirit, soul and body(3)

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[Scripture]

Galatians 5:19-21
“Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, [20] idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, [21] envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

[Introduction]

Dear brothers and sisters, our God is omnipotent and omniscient.

God, who created all things in the universe and rules over them, has promised us that He would answer to our prayers. He is our Father who delights Himself in blessing His children.

Then, why do some believers who say they have faith and are faithful suffer from trials and hardships like worldly people?

Why do some believers not receive the answers to their prayers even though they pray so earnestly?

We have a clear answer in Isaiah 59:1-3. It says, “Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear. [2] But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear. [3] For your hands are defiled with blood, And your fingers with iniquity; Your lips have spoken lies, Your tongue has muttered perversity.”

No matter how much we pray with tears, if we have a wall of sin, we cannot experience God’s works not to talk about receiving blessings.

Also, today’s passage says, “Those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” Therefore, they will not even be saved.

So, if a person who is committing works of the flesh prays to God saying, “God please give me answers to my problems,” God will say, “You first get away from sins. Repent and turn back and then ask me.”
So, continued from the last session, I will explain each aspect of the works of the flesh one by one today.

When I preach about sins on the altar, some people feel offended or uncomfortable to listen to the message. But I hope you will realize these are the words of blessings and be thankful to God.

The secret of receiving answers and blessings and of gaining the kingdom of heaven and eternal life is to throw away sins through the precious blood of Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 5:8 says, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light.”

Even though you were living in darkness before, I bless in the name of the Lord that you will dwell in light through the word and come out to the way of blessings that God is opening.

[Body]

Dear brothers and sisters, members who are attending the service through the satellite all over the country, members of branch churches, local sanctuaries, Light and Salt mission, Restaurant Mission, members who are attending the service on the Internet all over the world, [children of Sunday school] this is the 3rd session of the 3rd lecture on spirit, soul, and body. Today, I will explain about the works of the flesh continued from the last session. Works of the flesh is to commit sins with actions.

For example, if you do not just think about adultery with your sinful nature but puts your thought into action with your body, it is the work of the flesh called adultery. There are two kinds of adulteries. The physical adultery is when unmarried man and woman have physical relationship with each other. Spiritual adultery is when God’s children do sorceries and worship evil spirits.
Today, let us look into ‘uncleanness.’ Uncleanness is not physically being dirty with dirt or something but being spiritually dirty.

It is not only about one particular sin but in any kind of sin, if it goes beyond the ordinary level and comes out as a messy thing, it is uncleanness.

All men have sinful nature they inherited from their ancestors, so they have hatred, envy, and adultery. And because people just live being stained with sins in this world before they accept the Lord, even though they are not so evil, they can commit sins with thoughts and actions.

But being unclean is going beyond ordinary level. It is about sins that go beyond morality and ethics.

When people commit things that are not understandable at all and cause so much pain to other people, we say it is unclean.
Just look at adultery, and there are many shocking ways of committing adultery rather than just committing ordinary adultery.

It is not easy to explain about these things on the altar, but let me explain in detail so that you will be able to keep yourself from this sinful and dark world.

For example a robber rapes the wife and the daughter of the family he is robbing while the family members are looking at them not to let them report to the police. Or some people commit adultery together in a group.

Leviticus 18:6 says, “None of you shall approach anyone who is near of kin to him, to uncover his nakedness.” In the following verses, God says we must not uncover the nakedness of step mother, mother, mother-in-law, sisters born at home or elsewhere, son’s daughter, daughter’s daughter, father’s sister, mother’s sister, or father’s brother’s wife.

Also, Leviticus 20:15-16 says, “If a man mates with an animal, he shall surely be put to death, and you shall kill the animal. [16] If a woman approaches any animal and mates with it, you shall kill the woman and the animal. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood is upon them.”

Likewise, these adulteries that are going over the ordinary level and morality and are so shameful to talk about are unclean things among adultery.

After God said all these things, He says in Leviticus 18:29, “For whoever commits any of these abominations, the persons who commit them shall be cut off from among their people.”

Also, in the New Testament, God says about those who commit unclean adultery in 1 Corinthians 5:4-5, “In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, along with my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, [5] deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” God has prohibited these things not only in the Old Testament but also in the New Testament.

For another example, in case of jealousy, if it goes too much, it comes out as an unclean thing.
When people feel that they are inferior than or behind other people, they have jealousy. Most people generally have jealousy.

But in history dramas, sometimes we can see they devise some ways to harm others. They shoot some arrows on the portraits of other people or make a doll of the other person and pierce the doll with a needle.

This act of curse is uncleanness going beyond the limit of jealousy.
When evil thing goes beyond the limit, this kind of unclean thing comes out that cannot be accepted by ordinary people’s conscience.

The next is lewdness. The dictionary definition of lewdness is tending to behave in an obsessively sexual and offensive manner. The Bible has similar meaning.

It is doing all kinds of things that are not right following adulterous mind; it is to live in words and actions stained with adultery and following adultery in every aspect of one’s life.
If a person follows adultery too much, he can commit adulteries that are beyond ordinary level.
As explained above, in unclean things, there are mating with animals, doing adultery in groups, homosexuality, using instruments and many other things.

But as the world is getting more and more stained with sins, people’s minds become numb against these adulterous things.

For example, Leviticus 18:22 says, “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.”

Also, Leviticus 20:13 says, “If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.”

However, nowadays, there is a trend that people acknowledge these things prohibited by God.

For example, they form an organization that works for the rights of homosexuals. They claim that homosexuality is not something against the nature but they are born with it. They argue that we should not look at it as a sin or something but as a merely different sexual tendency.

Recently, even in the church they acknowledge homosexuality. In some churches in the United States or in Europe, they ordained homosexual ministers. Some churches even acknowledge homosexual marriage. We, however, must know that it is standing against God and the Bible.

Romans 1:26-27 says, “For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. [27] Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.”

It is certainly something against nature and shameful, and these people will receive the penalty of their error.

Also, 1 Corinthians 6:9 says, “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites.” It tells us that these people will not inherit the kingdom of God, namely, they will not be saved.

Also, Deuteronomy 23:18 says, “You shall not bring the wages of a harlot or the price of a dog to the house of the LORD your God for any vowed offering, for both of these are an abomination to the LORD your God.”

God does not even want to receive the offerings of those who commit adultery and lewdness. Rather, God says it is abominable before His eyes.

No matter how much the worldly people try to deceive us, we believers must keep in mind the Word of the Bible and not be deceived by the world or get stained with sins.

There is one more thing I should tell you. I want you to remember that changing the sex you were born with is not acceptable by God. If you consider yourself like a man being a woman, or vice versa, it is not right in the sight of God.

Deuteronomy 22:5 says, “A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman’s garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the LORD your God.”

Dear brothers and sisters, the things I explained so far, namely adultery, uncleanness, and lewdness are most evident things as the world is getting more and more filled with sins, as it is said ‘the works of the flesh are evident.’

It was the same when the city of Sodom was destroyed. It is also well known how corrupted the customs of the Roman Empire were when it was destroyed.

Even the remaining of Pompeii, which was destroyed by a volcano eruption, tells us how adulterous and lewd they were when they were destroyed.

It is same today. These things were hard even to talk about just a couple of decades ago and were not acceptable in the society.

Being a single, especially in case of single women, if they committed something bad, they could not get married.

But today, because adultery is so prevailing all over the world that they don’t even realize how shameful it is and that they are going against God’s will.

We should be able to realize that the end is so near through these things. I urge you in the name of the Lord that you will not be stained with sins but come out as holy and pure children of God.

The next work of the flesh is idolatry.

Idolatry is worshipping images made of wood, stone, or metal, not seeking God. Idolatry is one of the most abominable sins in the sight of God.

Exodus 20:4-6 says, “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; [5] you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, [6] but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.”

If the iniquity of the fathers goes down to the third and fourth generations, the family will fall completely.
The family will be messed up if they have difficulties and trials for 3 to 4 generations.

In reality, if you look at the families that have been worshipping idols for generations, you can see that their children have diseases and hardships constantly.
Especially, many of them get spiritually disturbed by demon-possession or becoming alcoholics.

Even when the children accept the Lord and try to believe in God, the enemy devil constantly disturbs them, and they face much more hardships than others in leading a life in Christ.

Going to a fortune-teller and doing sorceries are also idolatry.

Especially, if a believer does this kind of thing, as I explained in the last session, it is spiritual adultery and such a great disappointment to God.
And in idolatry, there are both physical idolatry and spiritual idolatry.

Not only worshipping and serving false gods is idolatry, but if a person who believes in the true God loves something else more than God, that object becomes an idol spiritually.

If they believe in God, they must love God first, but by not doing it, they are forsaking their duty.
Why, then, do we have to love God first?

It is because we can live by God’s Word, receive salvation, and advance into better heaven only when we love God.

As said, ‘one servant cannot serve two masters,’ if you love something in this world, it means that you do not have the love for God as much, and you will seek fleshly things rather than spiritual things.

Ananias and Sapphira in the book of Acts loved God in the beginning and sold their land to give to God. But they had a wrongful desire and hid some of the money they got by selling the land. Finally, they were cursed for deceiving the Holy Spirit and died.

Because they loved money more than God being a believer, they finally went to the way of destruction.

That is why Colossians 3:5 says, “Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”

Other than covetousness, if you love your physical family members or your children, worldly entertainment and luxury, fame or authority more than God, they can all become spiritual idols.

For example, some parents tell their children not to keep the Sabbath to make them study while professing that they have faith. Or they tell their children not to go to church meetings or prayer meetings but to attend cram schools. Even though their grades go up that way, what would happen spiritually?

It is eventually making their children worship studying as idol and to keep away from God. It is in fact leading their children to the way of destruction.

Some people do not keep the Sabbath to watch some TV programs, to enjoy sports games or their hobbies. Also, some of the people who used to lead a good Christian life now sacrifice prayers and church activities to spend their time dating a woman or a man.

All these things are to love physical things more than God and are idolatry.

I urge you in the name of the Lord that you will not give your heart to the worldly things but love God only with all your mind, heart, strength, wisdom, and life.

Today, we learned about uncleanness, lewdness, and idolatry. I will continue with the works of the flesh in the next session.

[Conclusion]

Dear brothers and sisters, Revelation 18:4 says, “And I heard another voice from heaven saying, ‘Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.'”

God is warning His children to be separated from the city full of sins. Just as Lot came out of Sodom and escaped from the punishment and just as Noah was saved because he was in the ark, God wants His children to be separated from the world that is filled with sins.

Today, many churches are still spiritually asleep although signs of the end of the time are taking place around the world. God will let the wind of the Holy Spirit blow to awake His children all over the world.

Those who wake up will come out of darkness and reach salvation, but those who are still asleep will not be ready but suffer a great sorrow on the day of the Lord.

Now, God lets us know about sin, righteousness, and judgment, and gives us the gospel of holiness that cleanses us like clean water. So, I urge you to accomplish holiness and become the instrument of the Holy Spirit waking up the churches during the last days.

I urge all of you to reveal God’s glory all over the world with the power of God that comes upon His children who are distinguished from the world with holiness.

I bless in the name of the Lord that you will be with the Lord as holy and pure bride of the Lord and God’s child who is faithful in all His house.

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